Skip to content

FC Westchester HVAC Posts

The Real Cost of Not Maintaining Your Heating and Cooling Equipment

Homeowners may overlook certain parts of their home, from the interior paint to draining the hot water heater. The HVAC or heating-and-cooling equipment in the home can become a fixed entity in residents’ minds too. Neglecting this system can lead to serious problems with the household’s comfort and more. Explore the real cost of not maintaining the heating-and-cooling equipment in the home. There are real consequences to inactivity.

1. Breathing in Particles

A subtle cost to neglecting the HVAC system is poor air quality. These systems move the air through the home. The entire air mass within the home slowly transfers through the HVAC’s filter in order to be warmed or cooled. This filter traps particles that would otherwise be breathed in by the residents.

These particulates can include:

  • Pet dander
  • Dust
  • Pollen

A well-maintained system captures the particles with ease. In fact, some components might have HEPA filters that trap almost every particulate that moves through an everyday structure.

Neglected systems have clogged filters. Some residents might remove the filter altogether and not replace it. The result is particles floating through the air, which leads to reduced air quality and possible allergic reactions.

2. Increasing Energy Costs

Residents aren’t putting any money into the HVAC system in the form of annual repairs, but the neglect is costing them in other ways. The electrical bill will slowly grow in size as the HVAC components struggle through their cycles.

These issues create strain on the parts, including:

  • Dusty surfaces
  • Clogged drains
  • Greasy residues

Without cleaning and adjusting the parts, they work hard to perform their basic functions. As a result, they draw more current from the home’s electrical system than normal. The increase may be subtle at first, but it adds up over the months and years. Electricity tends to be more expensive than other energy sources, so most households like to keep a strict eye on conserving this resource.

3. Exuding Toxic Fumes

A serious cost of not maintaining the HVAC equipment is fumes. When a furnace activates, it often uses natural gas and a flame in order to warm the air and surrounding rooms. If the gas doesn’t ignite as designed, it might leak into the home.

Carbon monoxide can be deadly, so it’s imperative to maintain the system so that these fumes are never a concern. A rotten-egg scent might accompany this type of fume leak. Immediately stop the furnace, and seek professional help in this case.

Other fumes might permeate the interior air, including:

  • Musty scent
  • Burnt odor
  • Metallic smell

No HVAC system should give off these scents, which means that maintenance is necessary at this point.

4. Leaking Fluids

Although the HVAC system blows cool and hot air into the home, this fact doesn’t mean that fluids aren’t involved with its functions. In fact, there are several fluids that move through the system, such as condensate water or refrigerant.

These fluids remain trapped within the closed system, but they can leak out when maintenance isn’t a regular occurrence.

The refrigerant might leak near the outside unit where the hoses are exposed to the elements. These leaks go largely unnoticed, which leads to poor operation and expensive repairs.

A yearly tune-up gives technicians a chance to catch small leaks that are easily repaired. Replacing multiple hoses and recharging a poorly maintained system is a big job. Avoid the serious costs of HVAC repairs with minor fixes over the years.

5. Damaging Structural Elements

Within the interior unit is a condensate drain. Water built up within the system will condense into a trap and connected drain so that it can be carefully removed from the structure. Without regular maintenance, this drain can become clogged.

Water might back up into the system where it leaks into any crevice. Residents may not notice a leak for weeks or even months. These slow leaks can eventually damage structural elements.

Residents might see these issues occurring around the interior unit, such as:

  • Mold growth
  • Yellowing drywall
  • Mysterious puddles

Maintaining the system reduces the chances of any leaks, which protects the drywall and surrounding materials.

6. Fluctuating Electrical Issues

Furnaces and central air conditioners pull a lot of energy from the home’s electrical system when they’re well-maintained systems. Residents might notice a slight dimming of the lights when the system activates, for instance. This occurrence is simply a temporary current draw on the wiring under normal circumstances.

Neglected HVAC systems, however, might cause noticeable changes in the home’s electricity. Issues that arise might include tripped circuit breakers or lights flickering off and on.

If the household notices any electrical issues that are becoming progressively worse, contacting technicians for an immediate appointment is critical. There may be considerable damage to the HVAC and electrical systems when fluctuations are present. Both systems should work seamlessly for overall safety.

7. Creating an Expensive Bill

It’s deceptive to think that an HVAC system doesn’t have a real cost to its maintenance. Residents may not be putting any money toward yearly checkups, for example. The components just keep on running.

Those parts, however, are slowly declining. Instead of paying for low-cost checkups, an expensive bill may be on the horizon. When the system finally breaks down, multiple components may require replacement. Adjustments or repairs that are much more affordable aren’t possible anymore because of neglect.

Keep in mind that it’s always less expensive to repair minor issues with each yearly tuneup than paying for an entirely new HVAC system. It’s possible to prolong a system’s life for many years with consistent care.

8. Feeling Uncomfortable

A tangible cost to not maintaining an HVAC system is discomfort. The home cannot be efficiently heated or cooled with neglected components. These characteristics might be common in the household right now, such as:

  • Motors with diminished power
  • Fans with lackluster energy
  • Hot or cold spots throughout the interior

Because the residents feel uncomfortable, they’ll adjust the thermostat on a frequent basis. Turning the temperature to extreme highs and lows to simply make the interior feel comfortable will put extra strain on the components. They respond by working harder than normal, which leads to premature breakdowns.

If a household has a vulnerable resident, such as an ailing senior citizen, temperature discomfort can lead to serious health problems. Caring for the HVAC parts will solve multiple problems around the home.

Work with a reputable HVAC technician over the years in order to maintain a healthy system. These professionals can ensure comfort and functionality across the entire household. Residents end up saving money and prolonging the system’s lifespan as a result of professional care.

Homeowner Tips to Lower the Cost of HVAC Services

Most residential and commercial buildings have HVAC systems. These systems are put in place for indoor temperature control, removal of smoke odor and unwanted gases, and replenishing of oxygen. You can have a local or a central HVAC system on your property.

A central HVAC system is usually located away from the buildings it is serving. It uses a ductwork system for air delivery. On the other hand, a local HVAC system is located in or adjacent to the building that it is serving with no ductwork system.

Your HVAC unit needs regular professional servicing. Otherwise, it will not work effectively. An excellent and accredited HVAC technician should be the one to do this. During HVAC servicing, you should expect a technician to:

  • Inspect the system to identify any poor electrical connections, leaks, and inefficient operation of the thermostat.
  • Check whether the heating system, thermocouple, fuel lines, and pilot are working well.
  • Check whether the system’s safety controls are function efficiently.
  • Repair or replace any damaged part.
  • Inspect and change dirty air filters.
  • Clean your HVAC system.
  • Remove any debris and clogs on the condensate drain.
  • Check the level of the refrigerant and refill it when necessary.

All these services are charged. You need to do certain things to your HVAC systems to avoid spending a lot of money on them. They include the following:

Minimize Allergens and Dust in Your Home

Dust and allergens make air filters dirty, which calls for frequent replacement of the air filters. To minimize this, you need to do the following:

  • Frequently wipe the surfaces and coverings in all your rooms.
  • Stay in a home free of pets, if possible.
  • If you have pets, ensure they do not rest on the floor vents, beds, and other furniture pieces.
  • Keep all your pets in one room.
  • Use covers that are hypoallergic on beds and furniture pieces. Hypo allergic covers minimize allergens and residue bugs in a room.
  • Keep your windows shut unless it is necessary to open them. This should be done during the spring season because there is a lot of dust.

Maintain an Odorless Home

HVAC systems have a return vent for the removal of odors. Therefore, ensure that every room has a return vent. For minimization of odors in your home, you need to do the following activities:

  • Ensure the entryways are open all the time.
  • Dispose of your waste in the right way.
  • Use cleaning items and products that are not harmful.
  • Ensure that all restrooms and kitchens have exhaust fans. Exhaust fans reduce the amount of vapor and scents in a room.

Reduction of the Amount of Humidity in Your Home

People often use humidifiers in their homes for various reasons, which makes their houses very humid. High amounts of humidity in a home can make an HVAC system overwork and make it need regular repairs. For a less humid home, you need to carry out the following activities:

  • Make sure all your property’s entryways and window air releases are addressed.
  • Have your HVAC system investigated and cleaned by a professional contractor.
  • Ensure there is minimal dampness in your home. It should be below 30%.
  • Ensure the dehumidifiers have the right size of frameworks. An HVAC contractor should check this to enhance efficiency.

Perform Extra Checks on Your HVAC System

Performing extra checks on your HVAC system will make it work more efficiently, which will increase the monthly electricity bills and repair costs. These are the activities that you need to observe when assessing your HVAC unit:

  • Check if the windows and entryways are correctly utilized. Proper utilization will make your HVAC system work well.
  • Ensure the HVAC unit is free of Shrubberies and bushes.
  • Regularly clean the HVAC vents. Use the correct procedure when cleaning.

Use a Programmable Thermostat

Your HVAC system will not overwork when this is put in place, and hence it will not need regular maintenance. You should program your automatic thermostat to start working when you are inside the house and stop working when you are not there. Moreover, it is unnecessary to use it in rooms that are not occupied, which will minimize repair and energy bills in the long run.

Use Window Curtains

Window curtains reduce the amount of heat lost or gained. When they are used correctly, you will not need to use your HVAC system all the time. When your unit is not overworked, it is less likely to break down. These are the steps you need to follow to ensure your window curtains are helpful in your home:

  • Close them during summer to avoid heat gain.
  • Open them during winter for allowing heat into the room. However, make sure that you open the ones facing the southern side.
  • Cut any trees or shrubs blocking heat from entering the room through the opened curtains and windows.

Keep Debris and other Items Away from the Heat Registers

Heat registers facilitate an efficient flow of hot and cold air throughout your property’s rooms. Placing items on them can make them get damaged, which might call for professional repair or an immediate replacement. Therefore, it is advisable to remove any furniture pieces or décor near them.

Use of Seals

It is imperative to use tight seals around floors, windows, and entryways, which ensures that:

  • The indoor temperature is good, and residue and toxins are kept outside.
  • Odors from outside your room are kept away.

Choose a Good HVAC Technician

It is imperative to regularly hire an HVAC technician to inspect your unit and give the right recommendations. However, you should make sure the provider of those services is good at his/her work. Also, choose someone who offers affordable services to avoid spending too much money on these services. It is advisable to allow your technician to carry out the following activities:

  • Change your air filters regularly.
  • Replace any damaged hardware.

HVAC services are expensive. However, these services are mandatory because they help in keeping your unit in tip-top shape. Failure to observe regular repair and maintenance may negatively affect your heating and cooling unit. It is imperative to follow the above procedures to minimize the cost of HVAC services in your home or business.