Have an Older Home? Watch for These 5 HVAC Issues

Although settling into an older house seems exciting because of its history and charm, the house may come with several HVAC problems. Discussed below are some common HVAC issues that you could experience with a poorly maintained older home in Oak Ridge, TN.

Poor Indoor Air Quality

Due to advancements in technology, modern homes come with very high-efficiency standards that help retain cool and fresh air inside while keeping the humid and hot air outside. The windows, doors and attic spaces have strong seals that prevent outdoor pollutants from infiltrating your home. However, most of the older homes have gaps that allow dust, pollen and other outdoor pollutants inside, and your HVAC system cannot filter all of them from the air efficiently.

Outdoor pollutants and high humidity levels trigger asthma and other problems such as headaches and congestion. Increased humidity levels and warm air leads to increased energy bills because your air conditioner tends to work harder than it should to maintain comfortable temperatures. However, you can make a few adjustments to your old home to maintain good indoor air quality.

To modernize your home, you can install new energy-efficient windows and doors to keep the pollutants outside. You should also contact your local HVAC technician to assess your ductwork and seal any leaks in the home and change the air filters when required. A professional technician can also advise you to install an air purifier or air cleaner to improve indoor air quality.

Lack of Zoning

Most old homes utilize a single thermostat to control the heating and cooling of all the rooms in the home. This leads to energy waste and unnecessarily high energy bills since the HVAC system cools unoccupied rooms.

However, a modern HVAC system gives you separate control of designated areas in the house, which means it is possible to heat or cool the living area without cooling or heating empty rooms. Installing new thermostats may help you zone your home. You can also contact your local HVAC contractor to install a ductless AC system with several indoor air handlers to allow zoning.

Leaking Ductwork

Deterioration of the caulking or sealant in old buildings can cause air leakages in the duct system. These leaks cause air to escape, making your heating and cooling system work harder to reach the desired temperature. Leaking air ducts might also cause debris to accumulate, or rodents, insects or birds can build nests in the spaces restricting airflow, causing the energy bills to increase.

Aged HVAC System

Most HVAC systems have a lifespan of ten to fifteen years. The heating and cooling systems in old homes may have outlived their lifespan, leading to decreased efficiency.

An old HVAC unit has to work extremely hard to provide the desired temperatures in the home, increasing energy bills. It’s important to consider purchasing a modern and energy-efficient HVAC system once you move into an older home. Remember to schedule annual maintenance services for the new system to maintain its efficiency.

Outdated Thermostats

Most HVAC systems in older homes operate using outdated thermostats. To have perfect control over the heating and cooling system in your home, you should consider replacing the non-programmable thermostat with a smart thermostat.

This smart thermostat has advanced features that give you control over internal temperature conditions and it can adjust to your daily routine, such as waking and sleeping and while you’re away from the home during the day. Smart thermostats also work through Wi-Fi, meaning you can access them from any location through your Smartphone. If you reside in Oak Ridge, TN, contact our HVAC technicians at Cook’s Comfort Systems, Inc. for HVAC installation, maintenance and repair services.

Image provided by iStock

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