The weather can be highly unpredictable in many different parts of the country. Heatwaves for days or weeks at a time, extreme shifts in temperature as the seasons change, all of these things can mean an increase in the use of your HVAC system.
But when you utilize your home’s central heating and cooling for longer than normal, it can lead to a significant overload of your Richmond HVAC and that can result in an automatic shutdown.
The major component essential to the proper operational capability of your HVAC system is the compressor. If that isn’t working correctly, then your system can’t effectively heat or cool the home. The most common culprit preventing the compressor from doing its job is heat. When the temperature rises in the compressor, the unit will shut itself off to prevent damage taking place to any other components of your HVAC apparatus.
Compressors can get burned out from overuse and poor maintenance and when this occurs, you will need to have that unit replaced. This is a costly repair that you can avoid as long as you don’t overwhelm the compressor and cause it to burn out.
Symptoms of Compressor Problems
If your HVAC system is having substantial operational malfunctions, the compressor is likely the reason why and it can be due to overload.
But how does a compressor get overloaded? It most typically happens when you’re running the system for extraordinarily long periods of time. Those triple-digit days in the dead of summer are a good example of overloading the system. Same goes for those sub-zero days when you’re running the heat day and night just to stay warm and cozy.
If you don’t give the compressor a chance to rest and cool down, you could be risking an overload of the system. This type of thing happens more frequently with older units than the newer ones, as the outdated equipment can no longer handle the demands you’re putting on it with regularity.
The compressor can also be damaged by other additional factors that can come about for any number of other reasons. But these are usually a result of a botched installation of the system and poor maintenance where the homeowner fails to replace the air filter on a routine basis or fails to have various components of the system properly cleaned.
When the HVAC system is dirty or the filter has been left to sit for months or years at a time, that can cause your system to work harder just to output the expected levels of heated or cooled air. This will also contribute to an overloading of your system and it can put too much undue stress on your compressor.
Airflow is very important for your compressor and the HVAC system to work properly and if there is anything preventing proper airflow from getting through, that can also lead to an overload. If the surrounding areas of the compressor are too close to the unit that can block airflow. So be sure the compressor is free of dirt, debris, and any other environmental blockages that can cause the compressor to get overloaded.
These can all lead to the compressor getting burned out. You want to prevent that from happening.
Here’s How to do That
Be sure you’re always current on the maintenance of the system. That means replacing the air filter at least every three months and be sure nothing is impeding airflow. Cut down thick or long branches that might be covering the compressor and be sure there is plenty of clearance surrounding the unit.
Don’t place anything near or up against the compressor as that will stop the flow of air in and out.
You can also purchase an overload protector that will work to keep the compressor from getting overheated and working too hard. This works as a monitor of the compressor’s temperature levels and shuts the unit down if the temperature starts approaching dangerous levels. While your compressor will power itself off if it gets overloaded, there’s no guarantee the unit won’t get damaged in the process.
But with a protector attached, the compressor will be given ample time to cool down when it’s being used for extended periods of time. You’re not outside to keep an eye on the condition of the compressor and you won’t know something is wrong until it’s too late and the unit is burned out.
Taking care of your compressor will let you avoid costly repairs and help you save on home heating and cooling bills in the bargain.