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5 Common HVAC Problems

Dealing with HVAC problems can be a huge headache. From paying exorbitant electric bills to feeling uncomfortable in your own home, if your HVAC system isn’t performing well, it’s going to affect you.

Sometimes your AC out of whack, your thermostat might need adjusting, or you may just need to do a little cleaning.

There are a few HVAC problems that arise frequently enough for us to put together the following list of 5 common HVAC problems and ways you can remedy them - let’s get started:

Clogged AC Drain Line

Drain lines are designed to ensure proper drainage of condensation water during the air conditioning process.

Over time dust, sludge builds up and can block the drain line. This often occurs because of poor maintenance after a long time. While a little material buildup is alright, when it grows large enough, blockages stop the water from flowing.

Here are some signs of a clogged drain line:

You can easily remove the blockage from the drain line by yourself if you have some basic knowledge about your HVAC system. For that, you’ll need gloves, bleach, a funnel, and some warm water.

First, turn off the breaker of your AC. Then find your AC drain line - they’re generally located outside, right near the condenser unit. 

Now open the access hole and remove the cap from it. Then, take a look at drainpipe to see if the clog is visible. If it is, attempt to remove it manually, wearing protective gloves. 

If you can’t remove it by hand, don’t worry, the unclogging of the drain line is easy to do with the tools you already have at your home. Start by mixing a bleach solution (with the warm water) into an access hole with the help of a funnel. This helps to dissolve most blockages. After 30 minutes check on the line. 

If the blockage is still in the drain line, however, you’ll want to contact a professional HVAC tech.

Dirty Filters

If your HVAC system’s filters are dirty, you’ll be putting undue stress on your system and restricting airflow. Dirty filters require your unit to work much harder to circulate inside air, and you’ll also consume more electricity. 

By cleaning filters, you’ll keep your HVAC system efficient and longer-lasting while also increasing the quality of your indoor air. 

Most air filters can be replaced with filters from your local hardware store or online. Most filters can be replaced on a quarterly basis, but you’ll want to change them more often if you have pets or a large household.

Thermostat Malfunction

Your thermostat is the brain of your HVAC system, and it controls your level of cooling and heating inside. Even minor thermostat problems can significantly impact HVAC system performance. A faulty thermostat can cause your HVAC appliances to underwork or overwork, shortening lifecycle, creating an uncomfortable environment, or unnecessarily raising your utility bills.

Why your thermostat might not be working:

Dirty AC Unit or Heat Pump Condenser and Evaporator Coil

Unfortunately, many homeowners fail to regularly clean their HVAC components, making it especially easier for the coils of the evaporator and condenser to get dirty.

The evaporator coil is responsible for absorbing heat inside, leaving the area cooler than before. However, when dirt gets trapped on the evaporator coil, it acts as an insulator and prohibits air from contacting coils directly.

Similarly, condenser coils on the outside of AC units can become dirty and fail to absorb the heat where necessary, reducing the efficiency of your unit and making your system work harder.

If your AC unit or heat pump seems to be working harder than normal or not functioning efficiently, take a look its coils and clean them off.

Mechanical Wear and Tear

There are several mechanical components of HVAC systems that wear out over time, whether it’s fans for your furnace, belts for your AC unit, or bearings in your blower. These performance issues can cause efficiency to decline, restrict airflow, and cause loud noises.

To keep mechanical wear and tear at a minimum, schedule routine maintenance, and don’t let issues get worse before fixing them or contacting a professional. Regular maintenance should be scheduled to avoid worn belts, oiling bearing, and clean tubes.

Still have questions? Ask an HVAC expert directly via chat or phone.

Published on 2020-05-01 by Ben Travis

Last updated on 2020-06-10

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