How To Troubleshoot Common Hvac Problems

May 5, 2022

HVAC systems are often taken for granted until they stop working properly. When your HVAC system isn't functioning the way it should, it can be a real hassle. Fortunately, many common HVAC problems can be resolved with a little bit of know-how and troubleshooting. From dirty air filters to dead batteries in your thermostat, there are several small issues that could cause your HVAC equipment to malfunction. Let's take a look at some common HVAC problems and how you might troubleshoot them yourself.

Electrical Issues


If you are having power problems with your home HVAC system, there is likely an issue with the electrical system. Many common HVAC problems are actually caused by faulty electrical wiring or a problem with the breaker box. If you are experiencing problems like the unit not turning on, the unit not heating or cooling, or strange noises when the unit is running, it could be the result of an electrical issue. You should look inside your breaker box to see if anything has been tripped. When circuits get overloaded, your breakers can trip and interrupt power to your HVAC system.

Additionally, wiring problems could lead to strange noises while the system is running. If you are not comfortable diagnosing electrical problems, it is best to call a professional. Depending on where you live, you can search for a "mechanical contractor near me" to find a qualified technician.

Airflow Problems


A very common problem that you might experience with your HVAC system is reduced airflow. No matter if you have problems with airflow from your heating or air conditioning unit, there are a few things you can try to do to troubleshoot the problem. The first step in troubleshooting any airflow problem is to check the air filters. Your air filter is responsible for catching and trapping dirt, dust, pet dander, pollen, and other airborne contaminants. If left unchecked, your filter could become dirty and clogged. If the filter is dirty, it can impede airflow and cause the system to work harder than necessary. If you have a clogged air filter, you will notice reduced airflow over time. It is recommended that you replace your air filters at least every three months.

If the filters are not the problem, the next step is to check the air ducts. If they are blocked, the system will not be able to circulate air properly. If the ducts are blocked, they should be cleaned immediately. Additionally, it's estimated that several pounds of dirt, dust, and debris accumulate in your ductwork each year. Over time, this build-up of materials can lead to a blockage of airflow. Finally, if your ductwork is damaged or has leaks, air could be diverted from your home, and you will notice reduced airflow. You will need a professional technician to help repair or service your ductwork.

System Short Cycling


If your heat or cooling system is cycling on and off too frequently, there are several things that could be causing the issue. One common culprit is dirty air filters. If the filters are clogged, the system has to work harder to push air through them, which can cause the cycling problem. A failing thermostat could also cause problems with systems cycling on and off too frequently. If you suspect your thermostat, you can try to replace the batteries to see if that is the problem. If you're experiencing short cycling and you can't resolve the issue, it's best to have a professional HVAC technician inspect your system to determine the root cause of the problem.

If you are having trouble with your home's HVAC system, there are several things you can do to troubleshoot the issue. However, the best way to keep your HVAC equipment in good working order is to schedule regular annual maintenance.


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