What Does HVAC Stand for?

The term "HVAC" stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. HVACs are systems used to manage every aspect of a home's temperature and airflow. The central heating and cooling system controls temperatures throughout a house or building, with the heating and air conditioning units using fresh air from the outdoors, filtering it, and blowing it into different areas of the building. One reason that HVAC systems are so popular is that they allow residents to improve the indoor air quality in their homes and regulate the temperature in their homes. HVAC heating and air conditioning systems can also eliminate dust and moisture in the air, as well as control room temperature, replenish oxygen, and prevent the growth of air pollutants.

How Do Residential HVAC Systems Work?

Residential HVAC systems employ ductwork and mechanical heating, cooling, and blowing devices to provide heat and air conditioning to a home's primary areas. Air conditioners and furnaces are used to reduce heat or raise temperature through absorption by heating or cooling. They have several main components – the air conditioner coil, compressor coil, and blower components. Furnace energy comes from the combustion of natural or propane-fired fuels like coal. The energy generated by the burning units is stored in an exchanger, and the fume ejects combustion waste outside.

What Causes an HVAC System to Fail?

Some factors that can cause an HVAC system to fail include

  • dirty condensing coils
  • broken fan blades
  • refrigerant leaks
  • leaky ducts
  • a clogged outdoor unit

What is Considered an HVAC Emergency?

An HVAC service emergency is characterized by the severity of the situation--whether or not the HVAC equipment will continue to function without repairs. If your HVAC has stopped working at all or if it is at risk of breaking down within the next few days or weeks, you have an HVAC service emergency. In the event of an emergency, be sure to call your local HVAC service company for an emergency HVAC repair.

What Are the Most Common HVAC Emergencies?

Some of the most common HVAC emergencies include

  • refrigerant leaks
  • clogged lines
  • gas leaks
  • ventilation problems
  • electrical problems

What Are the Most Common HVAC Problems?

Some of the most common HVAC problems include

  • dirty air filters
  • ignition or pilot problems
  • thermostat issues
  • dirty coils
  • tripped breakers
  • blown fuses

The most common HVAC problem is dirty air filters. When your air filters are dirty, your HVAC has to put in more effort to efficiently blow air throughout the household because the debris in the filter is stopping its flow. This increases the blower energy usage and may trip the circuit breaker. If your HVAC isn't working, check your furnace air filter first and foremost.

What Are the Most Common Signs of a Broken HVAC System?

HVAC systems have hundreds of components, which means that countless things have the potential to go wrong. There are several common signs that are easy to identify that you may want to look out for if you suspect your HVAC or heating and air conditioning system is broken. If your heating and air system is blowing cool air or your cooling system is blowing hot, call the professionals. That may seem obvious, but be sure not to chalk it up to a really hot or cold day. Regardless of the weather, your HVAC should be able to withstand the temperature outdoors and cool your home to the temperature you desire. Other HVAC issues may cause subtle changes to your home's comfort and your HVAC's effectiveness. Be on the lookout for more obscure indications of a broken HVAC, such as humidity changes, strange smells, and unusual noises throughout the home. If you notice anything different about your HVAC, contact an HVAC professional immediately to avoid costly repairs.

Signs You Need AC Repairs

The most obvious sign that your AC needs to be repaired is excessive heat in the home or room that the AC unit is expected to cool.

Signs You Need Furnace Repairs

Some of the most common and noticeable signs that your furnace needs to be repaired are fire and smoke in your furnace or heat pumps. If smoke is detected in a heat pump in any furnace, it should be immediately investigated. Contact professional HVAC services as soon as you notice a safety concern and get your furnace repaired.

What Do I Do if My HVAC System Stops Working?

If your HVAC system stops working, the first thing you should do is check your thermostat. It's possible that only your thermostat is broken--not your entire HVAC system--which means that you may not need a professional to assist you with the problem. However, if the thermostat is working, the problem may be more serious. In that case, call a professional as soon as possible, explain the problem, and let them do the dirty work.

How Often Should I Replace My Air Filters?

If not regularly checked, air filters may cause problems with your furnace, causing sluggish performance. Studies show that poor circulation of air might actually contribute to colds in winter. Air filters are typically replaced every one to three years, but be sure to check yours annually or biannually to ensure that it is clean and functioning properly. By replacing your HVAC system's filters regularly, you can improve airflow and throughout the entire house.

How Can I Increase My HVAC System's Efficiency?

The best way to increase your HVAC system's efficiency is to update it (purchase and install a more modern) or have it inspected, cleaned, and repaired regularly. Most heating and AC repair services recommend an annual inspection for your furnace in October, before the cold winter weather hits. They also recommend that you get your heating and air conditioning checked again in the spring, before summer rolls around. Annual inspections and repairs significantly increase an HVAC system's life expectancy and reduce the likelihood of a breakdown occurring during the season. HVAC professionals will check all of your systems, evaluate their efficiency, and identify problems before they occur.

How Can I Prevent an HVAC Emergency?

In order to prevent an HVAC emergency, be sure to schedule annual or biannual inspections and routine maintenance check-ups. The best times of year to get your HVAC system checked out are in April, just before summer, and October, just before winter. Another way to prevent an HVAC emergency is by cleaning and replacing your air filter. Air quality filters prevent excessive wear and tear and unit damage due to restricted airflow for tenants.

How Often Do I Need to Have My HVAC Inspected?

Central heating and cooling units should be inspected and serviced every six months. Air conditioners should be cleaned annually, ideally during the spring to prepare the air conditioning for the summer, and furnaces are to be checked every autumn in preparation for winter. Heating pumps should be serviced twice yearly. Scheduling regular inspections and maintenance can help homeowners prevent HVAC breakdowns.

Why Do HVAC Systems Need Regular Maintenance?

HVAC systems need regular maintenance because consistent service increases the HVAC's efficiency and reduces the cost of repairs. For optimum results, the technician should inspect both the electrical, plumbing and mechanical systems. Those maintenance services will extend the system's lifecycle and reduce the risk of emergency HVAC emergency services or disasters.

Does a Home Warranty Cover HVAC Repairs?

Most homeowners' warranty providers cover HVAC repair services. The cover may be standard or included as an optional addition. In most cases, the homeowner is required to pay an initial service fee.