Most often, issues that arise with your HVAC will have obvious symptoms that you can point to — your vents are blowing warm air in July, the unit simply isn’t turning on at all, or perhaps it can’t seem to stop running long after the house has been cooled to your specified temperature.
While our clients may be picturing belching smoke, strange noises, or outright breakdowns as signs that something is wrong, there are a few more ‘invisible’ problems that may not provide readily obvious symptoms but can affect your family’s comfort and safety. Here are a few of the symptoms you might see that need looking into right away.
1. Sudden Fluctuations in Your Power Bill
It’s easy to assume that a sudden increase in your energy bills isn’t necessarily abnormal, especially if you’ve headed into a cold winter or the summer temperatures have begun to rise. It may not be that simple, though. There are a few different issues that can cause you to have an average bill one month and a huge increase the next, and many of them don’t have anything to do with whether it’s 32 or 102 degrees Fahrenheit outdoors.
Common causes for sudden energy bill increases can include:
- Problems with your thermostat, especially if your thermostat is older than 7 years
- Clogged air filters or air ducts that are forcing your HVAC to work harder and harder to provide the same level of comfort
- Worn-out parts in need of replacement
- Other internal issues
If you’re concerned about a sudden unexplained increase in your monthly energy bills, give Donnelly’s Plumbing Heating and Cooling a call. Our service professionals would be happy to come out and take a look at your system to help you pinpoint the source of the problem.
2. Inadequate Cooling Ability
If your home seems to be cooling to a generally comfortable level, but isn’t quite reaching the temperature you’ve set your thermostat at, it may not seem like it’s important to schedule service, since, well, it’s mostly working, right?
When it comes to your home heating and cooling system, never settle for ‘mostly’. Ten degrees can be the difference between comfort and misery when it’s the middle of December, and if your HVAC is starting to malfunction even a little bit, it’s very likely that the problem will continue to worsen until it’s checked out and the issue is discovered and repaired.
3. Allergies Seem to Follow You Inside
If your seasonal allergies aren’t even a little better after you walk through your door, you may be dealing with poor indoor air quality.
Your air filters and air vents are designed to whisk pollen, dirt, dust, and other airborne debris away and capture them in the filter, ensuring that your air quality stays clean and safe. If you can’t stop sneezing, even indoors, then check your air filter first. If it’s looking dingy and covered in dust, switch it out. People with severe allergies may want to buy higher-end air filters that say they are designed for 3 – 4 months use, but switch them out monthly just to maintain the highest possible levels of air quality. If switching out your air filter doesn’t help, have someone come take a look at your air ducts. You may discover a buildup of dust and dander in there that, once cleaned, makes the air much easier to breathe.
If you don’t have outdoor allergies but are dealing with respiratory illnesses or issues that seem strongest when indoors at home, you are regularly switching out your air filter, and there isn’t an issue with your air ducts or HVAC, beware of toxic mold. Mold problems are more common than most people realize, and can cause serious health concerns until dealt with by a professional.
Avoid These Problems: Schedule a Tuneup Today
The easiest way to avoid falling prey to any one of these easy-to-miss HVAC issues? Scheduling a tuneup with Donnelly’s Plumbing Heating and Cooling. Our service professionals will come out and thoroughly inspect your system, as well as provide services such as cleaning up grass and other yard debris from around your outdoor unit and cleaning your evaporator coils. You can get a detailed walk-through of the average tuneup here.
Members of our Gold Star Program receive twice-yearly tuneup visits, giving you the peace of mind that we are keeping up to date on your home heating and cooling system at all times. If you’re worried about your HVAC or just feeling like something is ‘off’, give Donnelly’s Plumbing Heating and Cooling a call to schedule service today! Reach us at (215) 855-2014 or contact us online at any time.