It’s winter, which means we have plenty with between freezing temperatures and intermittent snow storms. In New England, we spend too much time removing the snow from our cars, driveways and roofs. And in return, we expect a nice warm and cozy home when we return to our homes.
But what if home isn’t as warm as it should be?
This could be a sign of HVAC problems that may mean repair. The same can be said for that hot drive in the summer, sticking to your seat and wanting to come home to a cool house. Below is a list of signs your home may have HVAC problems that need of repair.
1. Inconsistent Temperatures
With an HVAC system your home should remain at an even temperature throughout the day. If you notice a change, or feel like your system has been sluggish, call and schedule a professional to come out and have a look at it. Your HVAC system may need a repair or it may need to be replaced.
2. Strange Odors
As with many things in life, if there is a strange smell coming from your HVAC system, it probably needs repair. There are a few different smells that mean different things.
If you smell rotten eggs coming from your HVAC, this could be a sign of a natural gas leak. Do not do anything except turn your HVAC system off and then notify the gas company. Never try to meddle with gas.
Another odor sign that signals possible HVAC problems is the smell of something burning. If you smell burning hair or something like burning food coming from your HVAC, turn it off and call a professional to have a look. There may be times that a slight burning smell is normal, such as when you turn it off after having it on all winter or summer, but that smell should dissipate within a day. If, after 24 hours, you can still smell something burning near your HVAC system, then it is a problem and you should contact a professional.
3. Leaks Where There Shouldn’t Be Any
Your unit should never have water leaking from it. There are parts on your HVAC that keep any occurring condensation from leaking or dripping. If you see water, then there is a good chance those parts need repair.
Leaks from your HVAC may not be the obvious leaks you see from your faucets. These will be more like condensation, though dripping can happen. If you see water collecting near vents, under the unit, or from any exhaust ports, you will need to turn off the unit and take a look. Remove the vents and look inside. Is there water? Then you will need to call a professional to have a look. Mold is another sign that your HVAC may have a leak and needs to have someone come look at it.
There are other things that can happen to your HVAC, as with all machines, that can mean there is a leak. Sometimes the fix is simple, other times not. If you see water where it shouldn’t be, it’s better to be safe and call a professional to come and have a look.
4. High Energy Bills
For the most part, you know what you’ll be paying each month in energy costs. It may spike with the change of seasons, but you prepare for that. However, if you notice a change in energy costs in the middle of the winter when you haven’t changed the temperature in your home for months, then you may have a potential HVAC problem. If you notice a change, especially if the bill is higher than usual, you will want to contact your trusted HVAC tech to check on your HVAC system.
5. Unusual Noises from Unit
Machines are built to run as smoothly and quietly as possible. When your car squeaks, you know there’s a problem and it needs to be taken care of. The same goes for your home HVAC system.
If you hear a loud scraping sound, like that of nails on a chalkboard, you may be looking at a broken blower wheel in the motor shaft. Loud thumps, humming, and rattling are all indications that there are HVAC problems. Loud rumbling may indicate something more serious if your system is gas or oil-fired. In any of these situations, turn off your system and call a professional to help.