Larry Cook Heating & Cooling

Can Freezing Weather Damage Your HVAC System? Guide to Winter Maintenance

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When the seasons change from Fall to Winter, it’s important to take steps to winterize your entire home including your HVAC system. The freezing weather has potential to damage a heating and cooling system if the system is not properly winterized.

In this blog post, we will cover the importance of winter heating and cooling maintenance, common ways that freezing weather damages HVAC systems, tips to prevent damage, and signs that an HVAC system has been damaged by the cold temperatures.

How Freezing Weather Can Damage HVAC Systems

The most common problems that freezing weather can cause to HVAC systems are: coils freezing over, often called a “freeze-up”; and, broken components. Much of the time, we see these problems when proper insulation is lacking or when the unit isn’t running at its full capacity. When coils freeze over, it’s common for the HVAC unit to shut down or for the coils to burst. Cold temperatures can also cause motors and other parts within the HVAC system to malfunction.

Importance of Winter Maintenance

Hvac maintenance check

The best way to prevent damage to your HVAC system in the winter months is to have an HVAC professional inspect and maintain your system. The best time to do this is before the cold weather strikes, but it’s never too late. During a winter maintenance appointment, HVAC technicians should thoroughly inspect your heating and cooling system to ensure it has proper insulation and drainage, and a general check looking for any issues that may present problems if not taken care of.  Preventative maintenance service items such as the following, are also important: changing dirty filters, inspecting wires and electrical connections on your HVAC system, inspecting ignition burner assembly, inspecting for safety issues, like gas leaks with gas furnaces, inspection of the heat exchanger or heater elements, lubrication of HVAC system parts as necessary, and more!

Signs of HVAC Damage

It’s important to know the common warning signals that an HVAC system is damaged by freezing weather. Signs to watch out for include strange noises coming from the unit, higher than normal energy bills, HVAC system not working, and/or HVAC system struggling to maintain a comfortable temperature.

If you notice any of these signs, it is important to call a professional for an inspection to diagnose what the specific issue is and learn of your potential repair options. Keep in mind that continuing to use a damaged HVAC unit can cause further damage to the unit and may lead to more serious damage and thus higher repair costs.

Tips for Preventing Damage

You may be wondering what steps you can take to prevent damage to your HVAC system when the weather is cold. The following list summarizes a few things you can do:

  • Keep your thermostat set to a consistent temperature
  • Be certain that your pipes and ducts are insulated to prevent freezing
  • Clear away any snow or ice that may have accumulated around your outdoor HVAC unit
  • Have your HVAC system inspected and maintained before the cold weather season begins

Potential Costs of Repairs

If your HVAC system has been damaged by freezing weather, it’s possible that your professional HVAC technician provides you with multiple repair or replacement options. Depending on the damage to your HVAC unit, the cost of repairs to a damaged HVAC system could be significant. In addition to the cost of parts, there is also the cost of labor to consider. In some cases, it may be more cost-effective to replace the entire unit.

The best way to prevent expensive HVAC repairs is by taking the time to properly maintain your HVAC system and prevent damage in the first place. Regular maintenance can also help extend the life of your unit and improve its efficiency, leading to lower energy costs in the long run.

Winter HVAC Repair and Maintenance Services

Freezing weather can cause a wide array of problems for your HVAC system. By having your HVAC system inspected and maintained before the cold weather hits, you can prevent these types of issues and keep your home warm and comfortable throughout the winter. Additionally, it’s important to be aware of the signs of HVAC damage, such as a lack of heat or strange noises, and take action quickly if you notice them.

The potential costs of HVAC repairs caused by freezing weather can be significant, whereas money can be saved by investing in regular maintenance to help extend the life of your HVAC unit and improve its efficiency. By taking the time to properly maintain your HVAC system, you can save money and ensure that your home stays warm and comfortable all winter long.

If you have any concerns about the potential dangers of freezing weather to your HVAC system, or if you would like to schedule a HVAC maintenance check, we urge you to contact an experienced and reputable HVAC company. They will be able to inspect your unit and make any necessary repairs or adjustments to help keep your HVAC system running smoothly throughout the winter.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment with Larry Cook Heating and Cooling, simply call 316-322-5668!

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