You shouldn’t believe everything you read or hear about heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC). While there’s plenty of accurate information out there about HVAC systems and how they work, there’s an equal amount of misinformation. In this post, you’ll discover seven common HVAC myths that are best to ignore.
#1) Closing Vents Conserves Energy
Closing air vents doesn’t conserve energy. Your air conditioner or furnace will still have to consume the same amount of energy to cool or warm your home. Closing air vents may, in fact, waste energy. When air vents are closed, pressure will build up inside the ductwork. As the pressure increases, it may tear the interior walls of the ductwork while allowing the conditioned air to escape.
#2) Recharging Will Fix Low Refrigerant
If your air conditioner is low on refrigerant, you may assume that recharging it will get it back up and running. Recharging, of course, involves pumping new refrigerant into an air conditioner. The problem with recharging is that it’s only a temporary fix.
Refrigerant operates in a sealed environment. If your air conditioner is low refrigerant, it has a leak. You’ll need to get this leak fixed before recharging your air conditioner. Otherwise, the new refrigerant will leak out just like the old refrigerant.
#3) Thermostats Can Be Installed Anywhere
Another common HVAC myth is that thermostats can be installed anywhere. Thermostats contain an embedded sensor that measures the temperature of the surrounding air. Using this temperature reading, they send signals to the air conditioner or furnace.
If a thermostat is installed near a hot-water pipe or fireplace, it may read an abnormally high temperature. Even installing a thermostat on an exterior wall can throw off its reading. The thermostat must be installed in an area where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate abnormally.
#4) All Air Filters Are Made Equal
Think all air filters are the same? Think again. While all air filters are designed to remove pollutants from the air, they are available in several types. Some of them are disposable, whereas others are washable. There are also high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters. In the United States, HEPA air filters must remove at least 99.97% of all particulate matter measuring 0.3 micrometers in diameter.
#5) Maintenance Isn’t Necessary
HVAC systems need to be maintained. Air conditioners and furnaces are complex systems that contain many different parts. As these parts age, they can degrade and fail. Regular maintenance will protect your HVAC system so that it lasts longer while performing at its fullest potential.