It always happens at the worst time.
Maybe your heat calls it quits before the family is due for Christmas dinner. Perhaps the air conditioning breaks the day of your son’s July birthday party. While there are several factors that can influence the life and function of your heating and air conditioning system, here are five reasons they fail—and how you can avoid them.
Five Things That Hurt Your Heating and AC System
- Broken thermostat
This is a common problem that, thankfully, is easily fixed by a heating and air conditioning professional. A problem with your thermostat leads to horrible energy bills and can damage your system. Solution? Get it fixed as soon as you suspect there is a problem, which will minimize any damage. Even better, take advantage of maintenance plans that include a system checkup twice a year, during which your thermostat will be calibrated to ensure it’s in working order.
If your refrigerant is leaking, your AC is in trouble. This starts a troublesome domino effect: When the unit doesn’t have enough refrigerant, it can’t cool your house. Because your house is now too warm, the condenser works overtime. Low refrigerant can also cause coils to freeze. This is a job that should be handled by a professional, but thankfully, it’s usually easy to fix.
When was the last time you changed your filters? Dirty or clogged filters restrict airflow and block ductwork. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, replacing a clogged filter can lower your AC’s energy consumption by 5 to 15 percent. If you have debris around your heat pump, that can also cause problems. Remember that you should have 18 to 24 inches of “breathing room” around it.
- Wrong size
Is your heating and air conditioning system large enough to do the job? A professional can accurately calculate how much heating/ cooling energy you need per square foot.
- Fan motor malfunction
Normal wear and tear, electrical problems and dust can all play a part in fan motor failure. All of these can create “hot spots” that damage the electrical components. If your unit seems to be louder than usual, or you’re not getting the heating and cooling from your system, then call your HVAC professional. Delaying help could cause more extensive damage.
The easiest way to deal with these five common problems is to not deal with them at all! A preventative maintenance program can add five to six years to the life of your system and increase efficiency—saving you time and money!
Betcha didn’t know that!