Vents Aren’t Blowing Hot Air: When to Call For Heater Repair in Havertown, PA
The good news is, you may be able to handle it without calling in a professional for a heater repair.
In this article, we’ll go over four common causes for weak air circulation in the winter. We’ll let you know what you can do to fix it yourself, and when you need to call someone like John Cipollone to make sure the problem gets taken care of safely and completely.
Four Reasons Your Vents Aren’t Blowing Enough Hot Air
Four common reasons there isn’t enough hot air blowing out of your vents are:
- A Vent is Blocked
- The Air Filter is Clogged
- Leaky Ductwork
- The Furnace is Breaking Down
A Vent is Blocked
You may not realize it, but the furniture in one room can affect the air circulation in another part of your home.
Blocking a vent with a couch, bed, dresser, or another large object prevents air from flowing correctly through the system. In a lot of cases, that makes the heat back up because it has nowhere to go.
When that happens, your heater may shut off because it’s getting overheated.
Or, you may be blocking a return vent. In that case, not enough air is getting back into the system. So, there’s not enough to keep coming back out.
Check each room and make sure each vent has 12 inches of open space around it.
The Air Filter is Clogged
When was the last time you changed your air filter? If the answer is any more than three months ago, you may have found the problem.
The filter blocks dust and other particles from passing through your HVAC system. But, eventually, all that junk clogs the filter.
When that happens, not even air can pass through. And, when that happens, you don’t get as much circulation throughout the house.
The general rule is to change the air filter once a season or every three months. You may have to do it more often if you have pets or if your home is especially dusty.
In those cases, the filters catch more dirt, dust, fur, and pet dander than usual.
Ducts use forced air to circulate heat. If there’s a hole, split or another opening somewhere in the ductwork, then you’re losing pressure.
And, you’ll notice less hot air coming through the vents as a result. The warmth is escaping somewhere else along the line.
This problem can be tough to identify on your own. But, you can start with a visual inspection.
Look over any exposed ductwork coming from your furnace. Do you see any openings?
When the furnace is running, you can also carefully run your hand close to the ducts to see if you feel any air escaping. Use caution: It might be hot.
If you notice air coming out where it shouldn’t, then you’ve found the problem. But, the leak could be somewhere that you can’t access.
The Furnace is Breaking Down
The unfortunate truth behind your weak air circulation could be that your furnace is on the verge of a breakdown. It’s possible you can catch it in time and fix it, but it also could be a warning sign that you’ll need a new one soon.
As a furnace gets older, or if there’s a problem, it often struggles to get the job done.
A tell-tale sign of this problem is if you also notice your energy bills rising while getting less heat. The system is using for gas or oil, but it’s still not enough to work correctly.
The age of the system and the maintenance history are also clues. If it’s over 15 years old, there’s a chance you’ll need a new one soon.
Of course, many heaters last longer than that. But, to hit 20 years or more, they need annual preventative maintenance.
If you’ve had regular tune-ups once a year, you’re likely in good shape. If not, the lack of circulation could mean a replacement is coming up soon.
Do I Need Furnace Repair When My Vents Don’t Blow Enough Hot Air?
If you’ve identified a simple problem such as a blocked vent or clogged air filter, congratulations! You saved yourself the time and money of calling for furnace repair. If the problem wasn’t that simple, however, it’s time to call a professional.
Even if you noticed a leak in your ductwork, it’s nothing you can really repair on your own. And, there are warning signs that you should get someone to look at your system sooner rather than later.
Cold Air Blowing Through the Vents
Not enough air is one thing. Noticing cold air coming through the vents when you have the heat on, however, is a bigger problem.
Here’s what’s happening: The furnace is overheating. Yes, the machine built to create heat can only get so hot.
It makes sense: It produces heat, but it also gets rid of it right away. If that hot air bottles up inside the unit, the inner components can become damaged.
Fortunately, there’s a failsafe: Blowing cold air. A sudden burst of cool prevents any damage from overheating.
That’s why you’re suddenly getting a blast of frigid air through your vents in the winter. That air has to go somewhere, too.
So, if you don’t do anything about it, you’re just letting the problem fester. Meanwhile, that temporary fix will eventually make things worse.
The constant, extreme swings between high and low temperatures cause the parts to wear out and crack under the stress.
In particular, the heat exchanger can crack — which, as we covered here, means you need a new furnace.
Heater Repair in Havertown, PA
If you’re noticing circulation problems or cold air through the vents when your heater is running, don’t ignore it! Your Havertown, PA home may go from having a small, fixable problem to needing a new furnace before it should.