Winter weather causes problems across the country, from poor road conditions, slips and falls, and even HVAC system damage! Many homeowners think their furnaces are safe because they’re not exposed to the elements, and their air conditioners are protected because they’re not in use. Here’s how winter weather can hurt your HVAC systems.
Falling ice Air conditioners and heat pumps are exposed to all winter elements, and are often positioned right below a run of guttering on a house. Sticks, leaves, and even ice can cause gutters to block, allowing moisture to drip below. Icicles can form, gaining weight as more water trickles down. When they become heavy enough, they’ll break off, crashing into your HVAC components. A heavy icicle can severely damage the exterior cabinet of a heat pump or air conditioner, and harm system components housed inside.
Melting snow As temperatures gradually warm, snow melts slowly. When a sudden warm front moves in after heavy snowfall, you may see fast melting. Snow melting can cause water to accumulate around your exterior HVAC equipment and it may even back up into the house, flooding basements, crawl spaces, and garages where furnaces are installed. Exposure to water can cause your HVAC units to corrode and form rust, greatly harming components. If temperatures drastically drop, water can freeze inside the equipment, expanding and breaking your heating or cooling units.
Ice and snow accumulation When ice forms on your exterior heat pump unit, it can greatly affect operation. The weight of the ice can increase vibrations as the system runs, causing components such as the refrigerant lines to fail, forming leaks. Snow and ice blockages also restrict airflow – operating your heat pump continuously without proper airflow can severely damage the system.
HVAC Direct has a wide selection of heating and cooling equipment, available online! If winter weather has damaged your systems beyond repair, let us help you find the perfect new furnace, air conditioner, heat pump, or mini-split that will bring you comfort for many years to come.