Many homes in the United States rely on their heating systems during the cold and winter seasons to keep everyone inside warm throughout the day. Living in a home without an effective heating system can cause adverse health effects such as excessive shivering, colds, chills, and in extreme cases, hypothermia.
You must always take care of your home’s heating system and ensure it keeps operating throughout the cold season. Most homeowners don’t know when to do the necessary repairs to their heating system. In rare cases, they aren’t even aware that they can access their heating system through a stainless steel access door with a surface mount. If you’re one of the few who don’t know much about repairing heating systems, you can find ten signs telling you it’s time to contact a technician.
- When you’ve owned your heating system for more than ten years
Any machine will always have a specific lifespan until it doesn’t provide the same service it had when you first bought it. You can say the same with heating systems because the standard heating system usually has a maximum lifespan of 10 years. You’ll notice that the heating system will have poor performance when you use it to heat your home.
You might even have to replace the entire heating system if you bought it ten years ago because it may have a freon coolant or other components that don’t exist anymore. It’s also not advisable to purchase used freon coolants because it’s not worth the money. You’ll save more money when replacing your ten-year-old heating system with a new one.
- When it can’t warm your home effectively
Another clear sign it’s time to repair your heating system is when it can’t warm your home as it used to before. When you turn on the heating system after your home’s temperature drops below the comfortable level, you expect your entire home to become warm within a few minutes. If it’s been more than one hour and your house still feels cold, you must contact an HVAC technician at once so that they can diagnose and find the problems.
- When it has poor airflow
As mentioned a while ago, a heating system should blow out warm air right away once you turn it on. While it may provide warm air, you’ll notice that the airflow isn’t powerful. That’s usually a sign that your air filter may need cleaning because tons of dirt and debris block the air. You might also need to replace it with a new one because the debris gets stuck in-between the fibers due to constant use and cleaning that damages it over time.
- When it creates loud noises after turning it on
It’s normal for some heating systems to create noise because it’s generating heat and distributing it around your home through air ducts. However, a healthy heating system will never generate a ton of noise because its parts are still in good condition. Whether it’s a loud buzzing or rattling sound, you must assume that it needs a check-up at once before it destroys other parts.
- When it changes the temperature on its own
The only way for your heating system to change temperature is to manually change it or have an automated thermostat that follows a schedule for increasing or lowering the temperature. If the temperature frequently changes without touching or adjusting the thermostat, you may need to repair or change it with a new one.
- When it emanates a foul odor
Homeowners will feel uncomfortable when they smell a foul odor coming out of their heating system’s air ducts. No heating system should emit a bad smell, especially when scheduling regular maintenance with a technician.
If that happens, your system’s unit may have severe problems. A musty smell could mean mold or mildew have already invaded the ventilation ductwork. Burnt metal or melted plastic is a sign of severe HVAC damage, and you should avoid using the unit until you call a professional to take care of the repairs.
- When it starts leaking water or moisture in specific areas
Air ducts should always have a seal tight to prevent water or moisture from going through the other side. Even heating systems should not cause any leaks to avoid damaging electronics and other components. Hiring an HVAC technician can help you find areas that you wouldn’t usually know will have leaks to keep your system in top shape.
- When it experiences frequent short cycles
A heating system will flip on and off because it needs a slight interval before providing more heating for your home. However, the system may encounter a short cycle at one point, and that’s an indication of a damaged unit. A short cycle happens when you have a small HVAC unit that can’t handle your home’s extensive air duct.
- When it increases your energy bills
When your heating system works twice as hard, your energy bills will gradually increase. But if you adjust it to the highest temperature and still do not get enough heating, you’ll have to make the repairs at once. The issue happens when you overwork your heating system, so it’s best to turn it off every time.
- When it needs more repairs than usual
Finally, doing more repairs on your heating system than your usual monthly check-up is a sign for replacement. You have to keep tabs on how many times you repair the system to find out if you need to replace it with a new one. Keep in mind doing more repairs on an old heating system is costly.
Hopefully, the ten signs mentioned above can better help you manage your home’s heating system. Make sure to talk with your HVAC technician because they may have additional knowledge of determining if your heating system needs replacing or repairing.