6 Reasons Why Your HVAC is Having Airflow Problems
An air conditioning unit generally gives fair warning when there is a problem with the airflow. You may experience hot and cold spots or lack of blowing air from the vents in your house. You may face pressure imbalance in your Bay Area home, or the vents will not give any conditioned air. It’s vital that you learn how to look for these signs and call a trained contractor to fix the problem in time.
1. Dirty Air Filters
You may be facing HVAC airflow problems because of clogged air filters if you have ignored maintenance for quite some time. Air filters are responsible for keeping the air within your house clean by filtering out dust, pet dander, mold, and other pollutants.
However, the air filter needs to be cleaned or replaced at least once every 3 months (depending on the outdoor air quality) to function properly. When air filters get filled with debris, they become clogged. This may cause weak airflow or hot and cold spots in your house.
2. Incorrectly Sized Unit
Many homeowners erroneously believe that having a bigger sized unit will allow for more efficient cooling. This is not the way it works. A unit that is too large will frequently short cycle. It will not allow for efficient cooling. The same holds true for an undersized unit. While a larger sized unit will never run long enough for you feel comfortable, a small sized unit will try too hard to cool the space.
3. Debris in Exterior Unit
Leaves, dust, animal waste, and other similar things can easily get clogged in the outdoor unit. This is especially true for units that have plants and shrubs near it. Your unit will need to work harder to dissipate heat impacting the airflow. Your HVAC unit may overheat as well because of the weak airflow. You should commit to a regular cleaning schedule for preventing this problem.
4. Low Refrigerant Levels
The refrigerant in an HVAC system is responsible for providing cool air. It won’t do a good job if the refrigerant levels are low. You will notice reduced cooling in the house and that no air blows from the vents. Generally, low refrigerant levels are because of leaks in the AC coil or the refrigerant line. Lack of maintenance can cause corrosion and this issue.
5. Leaking or Blocked Ducts
The ductwork in your house is responsible for delivering cold air from the HVAC unit. However, because of lack of maintenance, dust and debris may clog the ductwork. This can create cracks and holes that may lead to reduced airflow. Clogged ducts can also be because of birds, rodents, and other things if you live in an old building.
Leaking duct can reduce airflow and impact the IAQ by sucking in pollutants and dirt from the outside air. It can cause electricity bills to soar since your HVAC unit will need to work extra hard for maintaining the adequate temperature which is not good in these inflationary and high gas price times.
6. Blocked Vents
A likely cause for reduced airflow could also be blocked vents. You or someone in your house may have blocked the vents unknowingly by placing a piece of furniture in front of them. It is possible that you simply forgot to open them again after closing some vents on a chilly day.