Quick Tips attempts to cover most of the pressing heating and air-conditioning issues we see on a frequent basis. If your issue isn’t addressed here, please don’t hesitate to contact our office about what your heating or air conditioning unit is experiencing. We have a highly trained office and on-site team of experts ready to help you resolve your particular issue.
How often do I need to clean my filter or system?
The type of filter you have determines the frequency. Some filters are 1” thick and need to be cleaned or replaced monthly, while others are 4” to 5” thick and can last up to 6 mths or even a year before changing. Filter changes or cleanings are determined by how much dirt your filter collects, not necessarily by time. The more often your fan/blower runs on your system, the dirtier your filter becomes.
Call our office now to discuss the type of filter you have and we’ll be happy to offer our expertise and suggestions for regular filter maintenance.
My electric bill is very high this month.
Your electric bill is most directly affected by the working condition of your heating or cooling system. All residential central systems need electricity to run their fan motors, compressors and other high and low voltage parts. Compressors, heat pumps, gas/electric/oil furnaces and air conditioning units can cause a spike in utility bills if they are not running at maximum efficiency. If you are experiencing higher than normal utility bills, call our office to have one of our trained technicians check your system. We will ensure it is working within the manufacturer’s specifications.
My thermostat screen is blank.
A blank digital thermostat screen indicates a low battery or no power to the thermostat, which may indicate no power from your heating or cooling system. Turn your thermostat setting to “off,” then call our office. We’ll help you locate possible sources of power loss, which may result in a quick fix. If not a simple switch or battery issue that you can handle, we’ll schedule a time to have one of our trained technicians out to perform a check.
Why do I need to keep my HVAC systems clean?
Most people assume that a clean filter means a clean system. This is not always the case. A filter cannot bar all debris, so, over time, your system will accumulate dirt and debris. Dirt and dust can accumulate and build up on refrigerant coils, preventing the refrigerant from removing or releasing heat to cool or heat your home, causing your system to have longer run times. Build-up on motors can cause the motor to overheat, thus shorting or burning the motor out. When a system accumulates dirt and debris build up, the system’s capacity can be greatly reduced. Add to that a filter that gets dirty enough to start slowing down air flow, and your system starts working overtime or fails. The only way your system cools itself or the refrigerant reacts to the heat is through air flow. This can affect your heating or cooling comfort and add additional costs to your utility bills. When this occurs, you may notice changes in your comfort level causing you to move your thermostat up or down more. This is an indication your system’s efficiency may be affected.
Did you know your air conditioner can condense up to 5 gallons of water per hour and your condensate drain is typically 3/4-inch in size? Think the number of hours your air conditioner runs to cool your home in the summer: That can be an immense amount of water your AC produces. Don’t wait to find out if your system has been compromised by dirt and debris. Sign up for our Home Comfort Club and we’ll clean your system as part of our regularly scheduled maintenance.
I can hear my AC running inside but no air is coming from the vents.
This indicates that an inside coil may be frozen. Typically, the evaporator coil is enclosed in a metal casing or inside your indoor unit. Either way, it is sealed to allow air to flow correctly across or around it. The evaporator coil is not visible without opening up the casing. Immediately turn your thermostat setting from “cool” to “off.” Then, call to learn whether you should run your fan or leave your fan on the “auto” setting. We’ll schedule one of our trained technicians to be dispatched to you as soon as possible.
The air coming from the vents is not cool or cold.
There are many issues that can prevent your refrigerant system from running correctly. Your best solution (to prevent possible compressor damage), is to turn your thermostat setting from “cool” to “off” and the fan to “auto.” Then call our office to have one of our trained technicians check your system as soon as possible.
My AC is running but my heater inside is leaking water.
A typical residential central split system has an interior evaporator coil located on top or below your heater, which condenses water in AC mode. The evaporator coil has a condensation drain system to catch and remove the water away from the system. Sometimes this system is clogged or breached, but there are other factors that could be causing water. To prevent further damage to your heating system, turn your thermostat setting from “cool” to “off,” then call our trained dispatchers to confirm the issue and determine if our services are needed.
I see ice on my lines inside or outside.
Immediately turn your thermostat setting from “cool” to “off” and your fan to “auto” in order to defrost your system. Typically, the ice you see is not even a 1/3 of what’s really frozen, so you want to check your indoor unit to make sure there is no water on the floor. Then call our office to have one of our trained technicians out to check as soon as possible.
My basement is very cold but my top floor is very warm.
This may be as simple as a dirty filter or duct damper not in the correct position for summer or winter airflow, but it could be a strong indication your system is having trouble and can’t keep up. Whatever the cause, we suggest that you immediately turn your thermostat setting from “cool” to “off.” To prevent any possible damage, call our office to have one of our trained technicians out to check your system.
I have my thermostat turned to heat but nothing is coming out of the vents.
If the heater is not making any noise, a lack of power to the heating unit may be the cause. If the heater is making noise but no air is flowing, it could be a variety of issues.
Your best solution is to turn the thermostat setting from “heat” to “off.” Make sure the fan is set to “auto,” then call our office. Our trained dispatchers will begin by asking you easy-to-answer questions in order to determine if a service call is truly necessary. Or, if you’d prefer, call us to schedule an on-site inspection, and one of our trained technicians will be dispatched to take care of your concern in an expert and professional manner.
My heater is only blowing cold air.
Many issues can cause your system to blow unheated air, including several serious problems. If your heater is blowing only cold air, turn your thermostat setting from “heat” to “off.” Then, call our office and we’ll dispatch one of our trained technicians to diagnose the issue.
I can’t see my pilot light or my pilot light is out.
Some systems have a standing pilot or pilot light. However, some systems are electronic ignition and they no longer have a pilot light you can see. If you don’t have heat, please turn your heater to “off” at the thermostat. This will stop the furnace from attempting to start or light up, and will halt the risk of a gas build up. This situation calls for a trained professional to check for safety. Call our office NOW to have one of our trained technicians out to your location as soon as possible.
My heat pump has ice on the exterior.
The best solution is to immediately turn the thermostat setting to “off” and the fan to “auto.” Then call our office to schedule an immediate service call. Freezing-up is typically caused by a restriction or a refrigerant problem. If it is a restriction, it can be as simple as a dirty air filter. However, freezing-up can cause refrigerant pressure to be driven out of the normal manufacturer’s specifications. You want to avoid damaging your compressor, which is akin to damaging your car’s engine. Let one of our trained technicians run a thorough diagnostic system test in order to pinpoint the problem precisely.
My heater is leaking water inside my house.
If your heater is leaking water, chances are you have a specific type of gas furnace that condenses water, or maybe a humidifier that is not draining properly and is in need of service. Sometimes the water issue is caused by something else other than your heating system. Whatever the cause, your safest bet is to call our office immediately. We’ll ask you a few simple questions in order to narrow down the possible source of the water issue. Then we’ll schedule an appointment with one of our trained technicians, if needed. We are here to help you prevent further water damage to the system and your home!
Reduce your heating and cooling costs and your need for unexpected service calls.
Our Home Comfort Club offers the following benefits:
- Spring and fall heating and air conditioning system maintenance checks and cleaning services to ensure your equipment is in top working order.
- Priority service and scheduling for all your heating and air conditioning needs.
- Discounts on repairs and new installations.