At Aspen Creek Heating and Air, we know that when it comes to your home’s HVAC system noises, when to pay attention to those sounds is of the utmost importance to ensure proper and efficient functioning throughout the summer and winter months. Our experts can also help out with all your HVAC needs and keep your costs at bay as well. Of course, if you ever here system noises that indicate an issue, feel free to give us a call and we’ll come out to take a look.
What Was That Noise?
First off, as with all air systems, there is bound to be some sounds that are considered normal. HVAC systems, in general, are pretty quiet, but you will likely hear a low-level hum or fan in motion. This is nothing to be alarmed about. However, if you start to hear any of the following sounds, it’s time to call on the professionals:
- Sudden loud rattle from the outside unit could mean a twig or branch has become lodged in the system.
- An audible hissing sound could indicate a coolant leak or improperly sealed duct work.
- Loud knocks or thumps are hard to determine but could mean a screw or belt needs replacement or is loose. It is advisable to immediately shut the unit off and call your local HVAC company in for a repair or maintenance.
- Howling sounds may indicate blower compartment leaks, fan motor, pulley, or a failing compressor.
- A thwapping sound may mean something is caught in the blower fan blades.
- Repeated clicking sounds may indicate a relay is out, or an electrical control is causing the time out and delay.
A quick word on maintaining your HVAC systems: we all know that maintenance is an important part of almost everything we own, whether it is a car, a bicycle or our own bodies. HVAC systems, in particular, are constantly in motion, collecting dirt particles from the air and other allergens, with this constant influx of debris, filters, and fans can become riddled with gunk that is extremely hard on motors and working parts. It is always advisable to call on a professional, once or preferably twice a year, to do a complete inspection and service call on your HVAC systems.
What’s the Problem?
Here are some common problems with HVAC systems that you may run into. Some of these you can rectify on your own, but it is always best to call for professional help if you are unsure of the issue at hand. An HVAC system can be a technical situation involving:
- blown fuses
- worn contractor
- gas valve
- clogged drain lines
- refrigerant leaks
- condenser coil
- evaporator coil
- electrical problems
A Routine Maintenance Service Call:
- Gauges will be connected to the outdoor unit. This ensures ideal pressure and temperature are achieved. The technician will turn the system on to check for correct readings and that everything is where it is supposed to be.
- Clean off the condenser fins and inspect for any debris that may have gathered during winter months.
- Oil is added to the motor’s oil ports.
- Electrical connections will be examined for loose or corroded wires and replaced if necessary.
- Inside, the unit will be thoroughly cleaned and checked for any bio growth. Mold is a health problem and needs to be immediately removed from your home if detected.
- A new, good quality air filter will be installed in the unit if necessary. Regularly changing the air filter is essential to ensure smooth operation of AC and heating units. Energy efficiency can be adversely affected by running the unit for extended periods of time with a clogged filter, also leading to component failures, due to dirt and debris clogging the ports.
- The thermostat is checked and calibrated when necessary. You may want to install a programmable thermostat if you have an older dial type model. Modern programmable thermostats offer significant savings with energy costs, and several wireless versions are available, controlled by smartphones and other devices.
- The technician will check the operation of all system components. The blower fan will be inspected to ensure correct balance and minimal noise when operating.
- If natural gas fuels your unit, the technician will check gas connections. Even though you’re concerned with AC operation at this time, gas connections should be regularly reviewed to ensure safety.
- The condensate drain will be inspected for clogs. Water leaks can damage the unit and most likely other areas of your home.
Ballpark Cost for a Service Call
Again, this depends on your area, but in general, a technician will charge anywhere from $40-$250. In addition to the service fee, you’ll also have to factor in the cost of labor and parts. Small problems such as fuses and circuit breakers will run between $50 and $200. Depending on the HVAC model you own, a new thermostat can cost between $80 and $300. Be sure to ask about yearly scheduled rates and HVAC service discounts, and be sure to get some quotes from several different companies.
Many homeowners do not have any idea how their HVAC system function or what it entails to run properly. Despite the most enthusiastic Do-It-Yourself novice, one often finds central air and heating systems a bit beyond their grasp. Tampering with an HVAC system when you have no experience can lead to further damage or potential injury. It is best to leave this class of problems up to the pros. In addition to having the knowledge and tools to repair your HVAC system, a professional will usually be familiar with the newest products and techniques and suggest ways to enhance or update your systems.
These are the many sounds you may hear from your heating and or cooling systems throughout the years, but remember, the best medicine is prevention! Be sure to have your HVAC systems maintained yearly or more often if you are in high dust areas, or are using them more often than usual. The cost for maintaining will be much less than if you wait and allow parts to cease, in which case they may need replacement. Don’t delay in contacting Aspen Heating and Air when dealing with your home’s HVAC system noises, when to pay attention could save you a bundle in the long run.