Something’s wrong with your HVAC unit, but you don’t know what the cause is. How can you figure it out, and how can you tell a weekend project from a serious issue? Here are five common HVAC problems, the side effects, and how to fix them. Read over the list below and decide if one of them may the culprit behind your HVAC woes.
- Dirty coils The evaporator coils on your air conditioner’s condenser help release the heat gathered from your home. However, this isn’t possible if the coils become too dirty. Airflow issues can arise as a result, such as uneven cooling and reduced heat transfer. Compressed air, brushes, commercial cleaners, or even mild detergents and water can be used to clean coils. You can also ask your service provider to clean them during a maintenance visit.
- Blocked condensate drain Ever look at that dripping line on the outside of your unit? That’s the condensate drain, which removes condensation produced by the evaporator coils. Algae, mold, or condensate sludge can build up inside the drain. If you hear dripping inside your unit or find pools of water on the floor, it’s likely blocked. To clean it, use a bleach rinse and remove the clog. You can also ask your service provider to check and clean the drain during a maintenance visit.
- Clogged filters It may be a hassle, but changing out the filters in your unit is important. Filters remove dust and debris from the air, keeping your ducts and the equipment clear. When these filters are clogged, airflow issues pop up. These can include an overall stuffy atmosphere or random hot and cold spots in the home. Change the filters according to the manufacturer’s instructions and your system usage. As an extra precaution, make sure the air ducts are also routinely checked and cleaned.
- Restricted airflow For your unit to perform its best, it needs an efficient way to get rid of built-up heat. To do this, the unit takes in fresh air through side grilles and blows hot air out of its top. Nearby walls, fences, or plants can interfere, increasing operating costs and decreasing effectiveness. In order to make sure the airflow is not restricted, keep at least one foot of clear space (also called clearance) next to the intake grilles and at least four feet above the unit.
- Worn refrigerant lines The outdoor lines on your HVAC system carry refrigerant to and from the compressor, with one line dedicated to each job. These lines can develop wear and tear over time, like leaks, torn insulation, and rips in the lines. If you notice ice on the evaporator coil, hissing sounds, or a drop in cooling power, check the lines. Though it may be tempting to replace the insulation yourself, it is best to call your service provider to make sure there are no underlying issues with the lines.
These common problems in HVAC units cause a variety of issues, but there’s no need to panic. With some research and work, your system will be back to working perfectly in no time. To schedule a checkup for your system or to troubleshoot another problem, call Miller’s today at 757-695-3143.