Preferences over the temperature inside a house can make good people turn on each other. There are grizzled men that fix cars when it’s 25 degrees without gloves, then come inside and complain that someone turned the thermostat up to a reckless and selfish, balmy 68 degrees. Simultaneously, others are in flannel pants under a flannel blanket drinking tea while watching Hallmark Christmas movies filmed in Georgia about women wearing scarves by a fireside. But...everyone agrees that seeing the white billows of breath on a cold morning when getting out of bed due to a malfunctioning heating system is unacceptable. Don’t let this be you.
So what happened? Did the electricity go off? Did I forget to pay the electric bill? Am I about to be visited by the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come? Well, let’s look at several things that could cause a home to be colder than you would like:
- Have you noticed a gas or burning smell? These smells, and the odorless carbon monoxide, are very dangerous. If you suspect any problems, don’t delay, call your HVAC company immediately!
- Do you have low heat or low air flow? Commonly, replacing a dirty air filter will do the trick. Cleaning the vents and making sure all of them are open can help as well. If you’ve done those things and still have problems, you may need a pro. Your coils could be dirty, the blower may be malfunctioning, it could be a lot of issues. Give us a ring.
- Do you have leaks around ductwork, windows, or doors? It’s worth checking. Those places can start to leak just by aging or expanding and contracting with the weather. Schnelle Heating & Air loves to help people prep for winter with HVAC preventative maintenance. The service also helps with cooling, but right now we’re trying to keep family members from starting a fire in the living room using old swimsuits for warmth.
- Is your heat pump not working? It’s likely dealing with frost problems. The fans and coils in a heat pump need to be frost free to work properly. Fully functioning, the heat pumps are designed to defrost themselves, but there are a few reasons it might not be defrosting correctly. Fast accumulating ice may be overwhelming the capabilities of the defrost feature, the system may be low on refrigerant, or the timer or fan might be out of commission.
- Is your thermostat malfunctioning? The problem could be that it needs new batteries, recalibration, or replacement. If the system seems to run when it shouldn’t, or should run when it doesn’t, then the thermostat is a prime suspect. While you’re at it, ask us if it would be wise to replace the thermostat with a better model. Your return on investment is almost always high when utilizing the features of a good, programmable thermostat. It will help you not waste energy and money heating too much when your household is sleeping or away from the house.
- Are your pipes frozen? Just like the heat pump issue, ice is a serious foe to an HVAC system and does significant damage to your home if the pipes burst. Be sure to turn the water off to the system and call your HVAC professional.
- Is the problem just in certain rooms? Some rooms are often colder than others. Usually this has to do with the fact that heat rises and cold air sinks. The common solution is to adjust the vents to be more open where you need more heat and less open where you need less heat. The newer approach is to install a smart system, which uses wireless sensors and climate zones to manage air flow and temperatures on a room-by-room basis. Contact Schnelle Heating & Air for more information on smart systems.
At Schnelle Heating & Air we can’t help you win the war of the thermostat, the Second Cold War - a war with traitors and secret alliances. But we can help to keep you safe and save you money through not just our repairs but also our HVAC preventative maintenance. Contact us here or give us a call at 417-781-4500.