Signs Your Commercial HVAC System is Failing

Keeping your commercial HVAC system in working order provides many benefits. The Department of Energy highlights the need for a proper HVAC system to conserve energy and ensure air quality. You can watch for these signs to tell when you’re dealing with a failing HVAC system.

Increased Energy Costs Could Mean a Failing HVAC System

When your HVAC system develops issues, they might not show themselves immediately. However, by the time your HVAC system stops working, there may have already been signs it was going downhill. One early sign is your energy bill.

While seeing higher energy usage in the summer months is typical, you should know your average costs year-over-year. Comparing yearly expenses will help you see your system’s efficiency and if you notice any differences. Also, keep in mind efficiency of the system does reduce over time from normal wear and tear. Expect about 5-10% efficiency reduction.

So, what you are looking for is sudden spikes with no other explanation. That’s a perfect time to schedule a maintenance technician to look at your system.

Failing Systems Don’t Regulate Humidity Effectively

Your building’s HVAC system does more than just provide cooling. It also regulates humidity. This is just as important, preventing a wide range of humidity issues, like mold. One sign of a failing system can be an increase in humidity indoors.

Ideally, it would be best to have a humidity meter (hygrometer) in your building for monitoring. Many thermostats and thermometers incorporate hygrometers as well. They provide a direct way to tell if humidity is getting out of hand.

Occupants can also recognize increased humidity as a “sticky” feeling. You might even notice signs like peeling paint or foggy windows if the problem goes on long enough.

A Failing Commercial HVAC System Needs Frequent Repairs

Over the lifetime of your HVAC system, you’ll likely need repairs to keep it running properly. Some repairs are unavoidable. However, with proper maintenance, major repairs should be few and far between. If you notice an increased need for frequent maintenance, it could mean that time is up for your HVAC system.

Even if you could keep it running with frequent repairs, it is probably better to replace it. A new system will be more efficient and reliable. Paying for repairs to extend an HVAC system past its useful life isn’t cost-effective. Instead, the best investment is to seek out an HVAC replacement when the time comes.

Don’t Ignore Strange Noises

An HVAC system in need of replacement or repairs will often emit a variety of strange noises. When operating correctly, your HVAC system should be relatively quiet and make the same noise without much variation.

If grinding or clunking noises start to happen, that usually indicates something is wrong. These sounds can signify issues with mechanical parts that are close to failure. Dealing with the noises immediately is the most cost-effective option because they can break other components if they fail, raising repair costs.

Unusual Odors from Your HVAC System

Strange smells are another key sign of HVAC issues. Any burning smells from your heating system should be investigated immediately. They can indicate a variety of issues and could mean that there is an imminent safety hazard.

AC and ventilation equipment can also develop musty smells. These smells could suggest mold, which can grow if excess moisture enters the system. Mold poses a serious health risk. So, don’t ignore any musty odor from your HVAC system.

Replace Your Failing Commercial HVAC System

When the time does come to replace your HVAC system, you can count on the professionals at the Severn Group. Our team can design a custom solution that fits your needs perfectly. Just contact us today to schedule a consultation.