Do you know the condition of your home’s heating system? As the cold temperatures roll in, staying warm for the winter is top of mind. It’s the perfect time to start thinking about the efficiency of your home heating system, and how to keep it running in top condition.
To put your mind at ease and help you get ahead of heating issues this winter, we’ve compiled a list of the most common heating problems, what causes them, and the best ways to address them.
- Dirty Filters
If you notice that your heating system isn’t working efficiently, check the filter. Over time, filters get clogged with dirt and debris which restricts air flow. This means your furnace needs to work harder to circulate air, limiting air flow and the release of heat. Luckily, there’s an easy fix. To keep your heating system running well, change the filters at least every three months in the winter, and up to once a month if you have pets, excess hair, smoke, or other allergens and pathogens in your home.
- Irregular Maintenance
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? Not exactly. Just like any other mechanical device, your heating system requires attention and maintenance to keep it running at optimal levels. Annual maintenance, inspection and service can help prevent the need for premature repairs and high energy bills. Stay on top of it and avoid common heating problems with a Heating System No-Breakdown and Tune-up from the experts at Ashton.
- A Faulty Thermostat
When you troubleshoot your home heating system, be sure to check the thermostat. Sometimes the problem isn’t with the system itself, but with the controls. Any glitch or incompatibility in the thermostat will impact the performance of the whole system. Thermostat complications include low batteries, misused settings, misread temperatures, or lack of compatibility. If you haven’t already, consider switching over to a newer model or a programmable thermostat.
- Lack of Circulation
Another common heating problem is lack of airflow. This can happen when the integral parts of your heating system become old and start to fail – including fan motors, belts, bearings, and ducts. Keep an eye on aging components in your system so it doesn’t overheat. Ensure that regular maintenance (whether it’s done by you or a professional) includes testing the essential parts and replacing any that are showing signs of wear and tear.
- Uneven Heating
If you find some rooms are warm and others are cold, it could be a sign of leaky ducts. Ductwork is the pathway through your home that distributes heat, and if one of these ducts has a leak, the efficiency of the entire heating system will suffer. If you have access, check for leaks by walking alongside the ductwork in your attic and feel for blowing air. Leaks can be hard to find, but once you’ve located them, they can be sealed off with silicone caulk or aluminum tape.
- Mold in Your Heating System
It’s no secret that Vancouver has a moist climate, especially in the winter. Moisture build-up in your heating system can be an issue due to lack of insulation or faulty ductwork, causing mold to grow. The best solution for this is to have a professional have a look and clean the system. It may be necessary to install proper insulation and seal your ducts so moisture doesn’t have a chance to accumulate.
- High Energy Bills
We all know energy bills rise in the colder months when it’s time to crank the heat, but if you notice an unexpected spike in cost, it might be a sign that something’s off in your heating system. It could be dirty filters or a tripped breaker – a dirty filter can increase your heating cost by up to 15%! It may be moderate issues like an iced-over outdoor unit or refrigerant leak, or severe complications, like a damaged compressor. If you’re not sure, call the experts at Ashton to assess your energy bill rise.
Use this list anytime you need to troubleshoot your heating system this winter, and know that we’re just a phone call away at Ashton Service Group for all your HVAC and heating service needs.