For the most part, heating systems are simple to maintain and do not cause many problems. Maintaining them properly is the key to keeping them operating efficiently. There are a few tasks you need to perform on a regular basis to ensure that your heating system does not break down when you need it the most.
When a cooling or heating system breaks down, there are three components that could be causing the problem. These components are the thermostat, distribution system and the heat/cold source. To understand the purpose of each component, we provided an explanation of heating system parts you should know in a previous post here.
The problem is most likely at the source if the air conditioner or furnace will not operate. The power to the air conditioner or furnace may have been lost. The unit may not be receiving any fuel. If the fuel being used is oil or gas, there is a chance that it is not igniting. If the air conditioner or furnace is turning on but the cold or hot air is failing to reach any of the rooms in your house, the distribution system or the blower are the most likely culprits. If the system is turning off and on over and over again or if it is not turning on at all, there is a good chance that the thermostat, or control, is to blame. No matter what the problem may be with your system, always begin with the procedures that are easiest. In order to avoid causing additional damage to your unit, the best solution is to contact a professional heating company to make the necessary repairs.
The part of the cooling and heating system that is the most complicated is the heat/cold source. This is also the part of the system that is usually neglected the most. Problems with distribution can be a direct result of neglecting this area. Regular maintenance is the best way to stop problems like these from happening in the first place.
Your cooling and heating system’s biggest nemesis will always be dirt. It will lower the efficiency of your unit and cause fuel to be wasted. All three of the system’s components are affected by dirt, so the most critical step of regular maintenance is cleaning. Belt adjustments and lubrication should also be performed regularly.
You can find definitions of some important terms that you should be aware of, as they come up quite frequently in heating and air conditioning maintenance here.
You can also find additional information regarding furnace maintenance here.
However, it is always wise to call a trained professional to handle repairs for a delicate mechanical unit such as a furnace or air conditioner. By attempting to fix it on your own, you could do more damage to the unit, only increasing the cost of repairing it.
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