As if 2021 wasn’t carrying enough problems already with new strains of the rapidly spreading COVID-19 virus and the toll it’s taking on jobs and the economy, the weather has also decided to join in the onslaught with a blizzard-like no-other hitting the East Coast of the United States. As has been the case with all of the recent winters of the United States, the temperature has dropped and the weather has turned from those hot sun’s rays to snow-filled cloudy days. Still, the good news is that your heating system is ready to keep you warm during the cold months, right?

That loud grinding noise of doom.

Oops! Spoke too soon. Over the last few days, the furnace has been making a noise unlike what it usually does when it’s switched on. You’ve just presumed that it’s down to the fact that you haven’t had to regularly use it recently and therefore there isn’t a serious problem with it. However, recently the noise has gotten louder to the point and the heating system just isn’t, well, heating.

Sounds like you have a problem.

Still, you probably wouldn’t notice a silent leak in the radiators or pipework, or that the vibration of the furnace has knocked some of the screws loose. At least with your furnace making such a loud noise, you can tell that there is something not quite right with it. The type of noise that it makes gives you a bit of a clue as to where the problem with your heating system lies as well. If it making a clicking noise or a rattling noise, then you’re likely to be confronted with an issue with a vent or a duct. In this case, check your seals and vents and make sure they aren’t blocked or stuck. Squealing sounds is likely because the fan belt needs tightening or the blower assembly needs lubricating.

Noises of scraping or grinding that sounds like metal on metal comes from your circulating fan, and this is where things get a little trickier. The circulating fan of a furnace keeps the warm air and cool air in the home regulated and reaching everywhere that it needs to be. Without it, heat just stays in one place, and that is no good at all. Apart from the strange noise, you’re likely to notice a problem with it when you encounter cold spots in the home.

The other strange sound to be wary of is a rumbling noise. A heating system should rumble on ignition anyway, but if it is loud and not warming up, then there’s potentially a problem with the pilot light. For this, and problems with the circulating fan blades, you should never try and repair the furnace yourself. Hire in a technician like those at El Paso’s Dynamic Heating & Cooling, Refrigeration to inspect and provide maintenance. Just remember to stick to the COVID-19 regulations as advised by the CDC when hiring workers to carry out repairs within the home.

Keeping the problems at bay.

Regular maintenance of your HVAC system is not just for the winter months, but essential for the summer months too. Even those hot sunny days will require the use of your HVAC system in some way. Yes, you may be using your heating less, but your air conditioner will be used a lot more. The whole system is designed to work together and keep the home temperate––not too warm and not too cold––and dry. Too much moisture in the home is heated by the furnace, giving rise to humidity, which is a breeding ground for viruses.

Chief amongst the many reasons to wear sunscreen is the UV protection that it applies to the skin. However, sunscreen still won’t protect against heat exhaustion or sunlight. If you are encountering issues with your AC unit during the summer, then keep the home vents clear and the windows open until it’s fixed. You should be able to escape the house though, just make sure you have sunscreen on if you do.