HVAC systems are a basic household essential that is required across America. Can you fathom everyday life without a functioning heating system? Fortunately, we don’t have to imagine this because over 90% of households in America have central air. But were you aware that because furnaces are vastly used during this season, it is a normal thing for them to act up right around this time? Though we don’t wish that this will happen to you, it does make sense if you think about it. As the weather continues to drop, we often raise the temperature on our thermostats. This means our furnaces are continually running, which can lead to them getting overworked. But don’t get us wrong, we know this is the whole purpose of a furnace. We just want to stress why preventative maintenance is so important. Nevertheless, unpredictable circumstances will still surface, and we just have to stay ready for them. So, without further ado, here are seven insightful reasons from your Hilliard-Dublin Heating & Air professionals on why your HVAC system may act up this winter.
1. HAVE YOU CHECKED YOUR AIR FILTERS?
The functionality of an HVAC system’s air filter is to trap loose dust and other airborne debris that may be floating about your home. Generally, we recommend that an air filter should be changed every 1-2 months. So, if you are experiencing issues with your HVAC system, clogged air filters can lead to an array of HVAC issues. For example, an overloaded air filter can cause reduced airflow or even poor indoor air quality (IAQ) or result in your furnace being overworked, ultimately affecting its efficiency. So, take note that double-checking the air filter first wouldn’t hurt!
2. HAVE YOU CHECKED YOUR THERMOSTAT?
A thermostat is the main component of your HVAC system that operates to regulate the various desired temperatures and settings. Thus, if the thermostat isn’t functioning as it should, naturally, it makes sense that the heating system will not also perform as it should. First of all, check to see if the thermostat is still turned on and responds to the different controls. A malfunctioning thermostat may just need to be cleaned, or it may simply require a new set of batteries. It may also need to be recalibrated. Whatever the case – if your thermostat is still not responding appropriately at this point, this is a good signal that you may need to call a service expert to diagnose the issue. It may be that your thermostat needs to be replaced.
3. HAVE YOU CHECKED IF YOUR HVAC PIPES ARE FROZEN?
Frozen HVAC pipes are another frequent HVAC issue that takes place during this season, especially here in Ohio! Cold temperatures can cause the water within your HVAC system’s pipes or coils to freeze, and on especially cold nights, combined with accumulated pressure, they are susceptible to bursting. Of course, this is not a welcome situation we wish upon anyone. If you are currently experiencing issues like this, give us a call as soon as you can!
4. HAVE YOU CHECKED FOR AIR LEAKS OR AIRFLOW RESTRICTION?
Have you ever sat in a specific room in your house only to feel cold due to a draft? If this is something you are encountering at the moment, this can be attributed to two potential reasons. The first could be due to uneven airflow from an air leak caused by a draft, so be sure to verify that all your windows are properly sealed and have no gaps or cracks. The second reason could be because of airflow restriction. If this is the case, you should confirm all the vents in the room are open and are not closed. You also want to make sure nothing is in front of or placed over the vents that can hinder the line of airflow.
5. HAVE YOU CHECKED THE PILOT LIGHT?
Older gas and propane furnaces need a pilot light to work properly. So, if you are dealing with your furnace turning on but not giving off heat, you might just be dealing with an unlit pilot light. If you’re wondering how this occurred, there are two possible reasons. It’s possible that a draft blew in and caused the pilot light to flicker off. The other potential reason is the sensor may have somehow gotten damaged. If so, this would also cause the pilot light to go out. You probably won’t be able to narrow down the issues unless you try relighting it yourself. If you feel comfortable enough to try doing so, you can relight it yourself. Generally, there are instructions from the manufacturer on the furnace’s side. If this doesn’t resolve the issue, it’s time to call in a service professional.
6. HAVE YOU CHECKED YOUR HEAT PUMP?
Did you know that heat pumps are another piece of your HVAC system that is prone to having frosting issues? Fortunately, most heat pumps come with an automatic defrosting feature, but if yours doesn’t have this, and you suspect your heat pump may have frozen because of frost or ice, you should call an HVAC professional as soon as you are able to.
7. HAVE YOU ENCOUNTERED ISSUES WITH YOUR FURNACE CYCLING?
Cycling is the process in which your HVAC system is stuck in a perpetual loop of turning off and on again. Typically, when this occurs, it doesn’t provide your system with enough time to warm up your whole home adequately. So, it results in a large amount of consumed energy, leaving your home cold and uncomfortable. To sum it up, you’re essentially throwing money out the window on wasted, unused energy. So, if you are dealing with HVAC system issues, you should try changing out your air filter first. An overloaded air filter will confuse your system, sending mixed signals to the system while it is obstructing the airflow.
The frigid weather of Ohio’s winter can summon a vast amount of HVAC issues to your household. This is why preventative maintenance is essential! However, sometimes some circumstances can’t be prevented no matter what, and sometimes you just have to take whatever Mother Nature sends our way in good stride. If you are encountering any problems with your HVAC system this winter, call Hilliard-Dublin Heating & Air at (614) 490-7520, or schedule an appointment online now by clicking here! You don’t have to get stuck in the cold this winter; we’ve got your back!