How to Use Your Senses to Detect HVAC Trouble
With weather quickly heating up, now is not the time for HVAC problems. That’s why it’s important to catch issues early – before you end up with a broken-down system on the hottest day of the year. But do you know the warning signs of HVAC trouble?
Even if you’re not an HVAC expert, you can tell if something is wrong with your system simply by using your senses to spot small issues before they become big problems:
- Periodically take a look at your system
Keep a keen eye out for water droplets, or condensation, on your ductwork or around your system. That’s a telltale sign of poor humidity control. Adding insulation can be an easy fix, but if it persists, you should consult a professional.
- Listen for worrisome sounds
Machines like an HVAC system have a way of sounding off when there’s a problem. A grinding sound, for example, can be an indication that moving parts aren’t moving as well as they should. A squealing sound could mean a belt needs to be replaced, while repeated clicking can indicate an electrical issue.
- Be aware of an unusual smells
HVAC systems are designed to keep your home comfortable year-round, but they aren’t foolproof. Roughly 12 percent of home fires reported every year are the result of central heating units. If it smells like something is not quite right, it’s best to shut the system down and call in a professional.
There are other unpleasant smells that might fill the air if there’s an HVAC issue. The smell of burning oil could mean there’s a leak that needs to be addressed. The smell of mold or mildew in the air could mean the unit isn’t draining properly.
- Pay attention to how the air feels
Of all our sensory experiences, an HVAC system is most geared to the sensation of feeling or touch. The air is supposed to feel pleasantly warm in the winter, and refreshingly cool in the summer. The thermostat is supposed to regulate the temperature of the air, so you’ll know right away if it isn’t doing its job.
There’s no way for your sense of taste to get involved with the HVAC diagnostic process, and that’s for the best. But your other four senses can all get involved, and when one of them detects something suspicious, the best thing you can do is contact a local reputable HVAC expert.
If you live in the Washington DC area, you can find quality and affordable service at Mitchell Heating, a family owned and operated business. Their trained and certified staff can provide the most important sense of all: the feeling of relief.
To schedule a home visit, go to mitchellheatingdc.com today or call (202) 621-2247.