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Heating System Troubleshooting: House Not Warming Up


With winter arriving on the South Bay Peninsula, it's time to get reacquainted with your heating system troubleshooting skills. If your heat pump or furnace isn't warming the house the way it has in the past, you can save some money on a service call by finding the problem and addressing it yourself.

Following are some common issues that can adversely affect heating system performance and/or efficiency:


If the air filter in a forced-air heating system is clogged with dust and debris, this will restrict system airflow. While your equipment is struggling to push air through the ductwork, less warm air may be arriving at its destination. This also can damage equipment and waste energy as the furnace or heat pump works overtime to circulate the air. Check the filter regularly and change it when it starts getting clogged.


Inspect vents and registers to make sure they're not blocked, which also will impede airflow. It's not uncommon for rugs, curtains, furniture and even toys to get shoved on heating registers.


Your home's ductwork may also be the culprit, if ducts have become dirty or sections aren't tightly connected or have become detached. While you can seal accessible ducts with metal tape and/or mastic sealant, you'll need an HVAC professional to perform a comprehensive assessment and repair. They might even suggest a duct system replacement if yours weren't properly designed or installed.


Poorly maintained or failing equipment may also explain why your heating system is struggling to make your home comfortable. If mechanical parts are dirty or in need of lubrication, the equipment can't do its job. Furnace and heat pump systems should receive professional maintenance at least once a year.


Finally, an older furnace or heat pump that's not keeping your home warm may need replacement. Your trusted HVAC contractor can inspect your system and recommend a path forward.

To address heating system shortcomings in your Silicon Valley home, please contact us at Valley Heating, Cooling, Electrical. Visit our website for information on most HVAC subjects.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the South Bay Peninsula and Santa Cruz areas of California about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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