Watch Out for These Common Winter HVAC Issues

Heat Pump Unit In Winter Conditions in Seattle, WA

While HVAC equipment is vital to keep everything in your home running, at Black Lion Heating & Air Conditioning, we understand that many of the most critical HVAC issues that will pop up occur in the winter. Those in Seattle and the surrounding areas know how brutal the weather can get in Washington. Here, we’ll take a look at common problems that can pop up. If you’re experiencing anything like this, don’t hesitate to contact us to have the professionals evaluate and alleviate your problems!

Freezing Pipes

Pipes freezing during the winter is a common occurrence once temperatures hit freezing. In particular, December, January, and February are the months when this is an infamous happening. Unfortunately, both a rapid occurrence of this and a built-up one will have the same harmful effect of bursting your pipes.

Once your pipes have burst, you will have an even more major issue on your hands. A burst pipe can potentially damage the foundation of your home. If not mitigated immediately, you could face a significant problem that will devalue and destabilize your home.

You should immediately call competent HVAC professionals if you experience burst pipes or expect them to burst. As a habit, leaving your water running slightly during the colder months is good to ensure that burst pipes don’t happen to you.

Airflow Problems

Airflow problems are commonplace across all seasons. In HVAC, one of the biggest challenges for professionals is ensuring that home environments are free of airflow inhibitors. For example, a box left near a vent is all it takes to make a home’s air system hit or miss in certain areas.

We all know how critical it is to have your heat working correctly in the winter. However, if you have an airflow problem, you should identify any apparent issues. This does not mean you should poke and prod around in your HVAC systems. Instead, you should look around and see if any obvious environmental factors could play into your airflow problems.

More often than not, you’ll end up finding the culprit. It may be a box or a similar item. Just moving the thing should restore your airflow to normal in most situations. However, in some cases, you might be unable to get the airflow back to a functional level performing these steps. In that event, you should have your HVAC professionals come out and assess the situation for you.

Bad Air Filters

Air filter deterioration is something that many homeowners notice the effects of during the winter time when many people stay cooped up at home. Unfortunately, as discussed in the previous section, you may encounter times when you cannot identify the impeding airflow issue. Many times, this will turn out to be a bad air filter.

Air filters, of course, have a spectrum of expiration. Some filters will still work just fine with a light bit of dust collected on them. Others will not; these types will completely conk out and end up useless with the slightest bit of dust. Whatever the case, you will need your local HVAC professionals to come out and evaluate the situation for you.

Don’t try to replace the HVAC filters yourself, as you risk many issues. Having the professionals do it will also give you the benefit of peace of mind knowing that licensed people are competently managing your air filters for you.

Bad Thermostat

A bad thermostat can be an issue that could make your winter much more uncomfortable. In this scenario, your thermostat may not be able to set the temperature in your house accurately. But, of course, diagnosing a thermostat issue is a complex topic that should be left to the professionals of HVAC work.

First, a bad thermostat may be the case if it simply cannot set the temperature, or there could be an underlying factor. Hopefully, this is not the case, but it may be that your underlying heating system isn’t working correctly. Again, the HVAC pros would know the specific sequence of activities to determine the faulty component.

If the issue is a broken thermostat, you will need to invest in a new one. Choosing a smart thermostat could assist you in the performance of your HVAC system. However, if it ends up being something worse, you will need to take the advice of the professionals looking at the issue.

Problems With Heating Systems

Your furnace or heat pump is crucial for you and your home during winter. Your heat pump keeps your house warm by transferring the cold air out of the home. The furnace blows heated air into the home’s system, recycling and heating the air in the home. Unfortunately, your heat giving out is no joke and could be life-threatening, depending on the circumstances.

The problem could be straightforward with your oil, gas, or electric fuel. For those who use older appliances, you may be familiar with exchanging the oil your furnace uses. The oil gets old and degrades over time, requiring you to change it with newer oil. Many homeowners may not know that this oil actually “expires” in about a year. You may have an oil problem and trying to fix it with old oil. Any oil on hand that is more than a year old should be disposed of safely and humanely to avoid further problems.

The problem could transcend oil issues. The only way to diagnose it well is to have your local HVAC crew come out and assess the situation. You should not delay contacting emergency HVAC services if your heat is out. When the fuel is a factor that may be malfunctioning, it is best to avoid getting into a dangerous situation by trying to diagnose it yourself; call the professionals for a thorough inspection.

CO Leaks

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a deadly gas that certain types of home heating appliances can emit. If you have one of these, it’s critical to install CO detectors that let you know if this gas is detected inside. A CO leak can occur, and these alarms can save your life. If you do not have them installed, you wouldn’t be able to tell since CO is odorless.

Your HVAC team should be notified right after you evacuate your home upon a CO leak. Do not stay in your home to talk with HVAC personnel. It would be best if you also made sure that they are aware of a potential CO leak before entering so that they can take proper precautions. Having a CO leak can be scary, but your local HVAC pros should be able to help you navigate the situation.

Choosing Black Lion Heating & Air Conditioning

Finding a reputable HVAC company with whom you can work is hard, but look no further! At Black Lion Heating & Air Conditioning, our team offers heating and cooling installation, repair, and maintenance in Seattle and the surrounding area. We work on furnaces, heat pumps, and air conditioners. Some of our other services include water heater installation and repair, duct cleaning, gas fireplace installation and repair, and indoor air quality assessments. Contact us today for more information.