When your heater or air conditioner runs, it draws in outside air that can contain dust, dirt, pollen, mold, and other contaminants. Most of the time, your system’s air filter catches this air pollution, but the interior of your HVAC system will get dirty if you don’t change your filter at least every three months. Pollutants in your Norristown, Pennsylvania, home also lower your indoor air quality, and they can cause asthma and allergy symptoms, skin rashes, eye irritation, and other problems. Too much dust can lead to ice on your air conditioner, fire hazards, decreased efficiency, and expensive, inconvenient breakdowns.
Ice on Your Air Conditioner
If dirt accumulates on your air conditioner or heat pump’s evaporator or condenser coil, the coils won’t be able to absorb or release enough heat to keep you and your family comfortable. Eventually, ice will form on the coils, damaging your compressor and other parts of your HVAC system. If you see ice on your indoor or outdoor unit, shut off your system to let it melt and call a professional immediately. Don’t try to scrape ice off of your unit, as you could cause more severe damage.
To prevent this problem, change your air filter when it gets dirty and rinse your outdoor unit off with a garden hose to remove dust, dirt, leaves, grass clippings, twigs, and other debris. Don’t use a pressure washer or any other equipment that could cause damage. You should also have your system maintained by a professional at least once per year. He or she can check for problems and remove dust from your indoor unit.
Decreased Energy Efficiency
Too much dust in your air filter, your ductwork, or your indoor or outdoor unit forces your HVAC system to work harder, wasting energy and increasing your utility bills. If your power bills keep going up even though you’re doing your best to save energy, have your system inspected by a professional.
If you notice musty or unpleasant smells, remove one of your air registers and check for dust or other contaminants in your ductwork. If you wipe the side of a duct with a damp cloth and it comes away dirty, you should have your ductwork cleaned and checked for leaks that could also waste energy.
Without regular maintenance, dust and dirt inside your HVAC system can cause damage and frequent breakdowns. Your home might feel too hot or too cold even if your heater or air conditioner keeps working. Coils covered in dust can’t heat or cool your home well. You could also notice drafty or warm areas caused by poor airflow, and your system could start working nonstop. This causes unnecessary wear and tear and shortens your unit’s life. You could have to install a new heater or air conditioner just because of dust.
In addition to having your HVAC system checked by a professional, you should dust and vacuum often to get rid of contaminants in your home that could harm your unit. An air purifier can also help you prevent problems and keep your indoor air quality high.
New Age Air has more than 20 years of HVAC experience and we can help you install, maintain, and repair a variety of heating and air conditioning equipment. Call us anytime at 610-482-4498 for help improving your indoor air quality from one of our expert technicians.
Image provided by Bigstock