During this past cooling and heating season, did you notice your bill was much higher than normal? A cooling and heating bill will go up when there is a problem. Depending on the type of HVAC system you have, the causes will vary. Ambient Heating & Air Conditioning will share some of the common reasons why your cooling and heating bills may have been so high and what you can do to save money and the life of your HVAC system.
Can Dirty & Leaky Air Ducts Restrict Air Flow?
One reason why your cooling and heating bill is so high may be due to the air duct system. You could possibly have a leak or the air flow is being restricted. Air duct systems have a number of adjacent pieces that are sealed together to create a funneling system for all of the cool or heated air that is circulated throughout the home. Where the air duct sections connect, at times they can come apart. When there is a split in the air duct much of the air will run out through the split and not all of the air will make into the home. This creates more cooling and heating cycles and a higher bill. Another problem is an air flow restriction. There may be some debris that somehow got sucked into the air duct. However the most common reasons for an air flow restriction to occur is when the air vent has been closed or blocked by furniture. In addition, the air filters might be dirty and need to be changed. Do not neglect your air filters and make sure the air vents are open and are not obstructed.
A home’s insulation is another major element that can affect your home indoor temperature. If you have poor insulation, your home’s temperature will be more affected by the season’s temperatures. In the winter the home will be colder and have a harder time staying warm. This will force the heating system to work more often to battle the cold temperatures. Poor insulation can be in the inner walls or the attic insulation needs to be replaced. Insulation can age or become damage if exposed to water. If your insulation is no longer properly insulating the home, you may want to look into replacing your home’s insulation. Another element to your home’s insulation, is the doors or windows. If the doors or windows have a leak they will be allowing the heated air to escape outside, or let the cold air in. You may need to repair your doors or windows if they are leaking. You can often see daylight coming from the door if they have leaks. To test your windows light a match then blow it out and see which if the smoke blows around, you can also use an incense stick.
HVAC Mechanical Problems
If the heating system is developing a mechanical problem, often this will add stress and prolong heating cycles. Mechanical problems can develop in older heating systems or could be due to poor maintenance. It is recommended that you have your heating system inspected and tuned-up by an HVAC professional once a year. The best time to tune-up or maintain your heating system is in early fall to prepare the heating system for winter. With proper maintenance, smaller problems can be corrected and the heating system will be primed and should perform at the system’s peak efficiency.