When you’re working with a commercial HVAC system, as opposed to a residential system, more is at stake when something goes wrong. Your home’s HVAC system, while still complex, is much smaller and easier to manage than a commercial one. When one part of your commercial HVAC system falters, it can damage various other parts of the system and completely destroy the system.
When the HVAC system in your office, school, restaurant or retail store malfunctions, you have to deal with upset customers, students, employees and patrons. If it’s 98 degrees outside and a customer walks into your store and your air conditioning is not working, they will not stay. While they came inside to shop, they also came inside to cool off. And they won’t be sticking around to shop if it’s just as hot inside as it is outside!
And, in the worst case scenario, you may have to close your establishment until repairs have been made or you replace your system. In the winter, the temperature in a building without working heat could drop below freezing, depending on the temperature outside as well, and it would be impossible to make your employees work in those conditions.
Save yourself time and money by keeping an eye out for these two major warning signs. If you notice either, call your commercial HVAC technician immediately!
Strange noises coming from your HVAC system.
Typically you’ve become accustomed to the noises your HVAC system makes, or your employees have. Maybe even to the point that you wouldn’t notice it turning on and off throughout the day unless you really focused on it. Because of this, when your system makes a strange noise, you’ll notice it. And if you take the time to walk around your building and really listen, there are a few specific noises you should listen for that could spell trouble for your commercial HVAC system.
- Grinding – indicates a potential problem with your air handler.
- Booming or sharp noises – indicates gas build ups, which are very dangerous.
- Rattling or banging – indicates you may have a loose part in your system.
- Hissing or screaming – indicates there is excess pressure in the air conditioner compressor.
- Gurgling or bubbling – indicates a possible refrigerant leak in your system.
- Squeaking or squealing – indicates parts of your system need lubrication or a belt may need to be changed.
Your HVAC system turns on and off constantly throughout the day.
This is called short-cycling. If you notice your HVAC system coming on and off more often than usual, almost rapidly, throughout the day you should give us a call. Short-cycling occurs when the system overheats, activating the limit switch, which is an emergency shutoff device of the system. After the system has been off and cools, it starts back up again and the cycle continues. It overheats quickly, turns off, cools off, and comes back on only to overheat again and so on.
This indicates a major problem in your system and also increases the wear on your system’s components. You should call a technician immediately if you notice this happening to prevent unnecessary damage.