5 HVAC Issues Seen in Old Homes in Wilmington, NC

The aesthetic charm of many old homes is undeniable. But combining their refined, classic look with modern home comfort technology is quite a challenge. Installing the latest type of HVAC system and its high-tech accouterments can be especially difficult. Here are five important HVAC issues that those who own classic old homes in Wilmington, NC, often encounter:

Old HVAC System

The first and most obvious problem to deal with when heading into an older home is that its HVAC system has probably aged well past the point at which it can still function effectively. Typically, residential HVAC systems have a shelf life of anywhere from 15 to 20 years, with heat pumps and air conditioners clocking in at closer to 15 years. With this in mind, you may have to replace the outdated system shortly after you buy your home.

Failure to do so will set you up for a lot of hassle and dysfunction. You’ll likely have to pay for constant repairs, and their costs will run high before very long. A brand-new HVAC system, on the other hand, will deliver significant efficiency and performance benefits.

Outdated Thermostat

If your home has an ancient HVAC system, it probably has an outdated manual thermostat as well. Modern programmable thermostats have many obvious advantages over these obsolete models. The former allows you to calibrate temperatures precisely and control exactly when your HVAC system turns on and off.

You can also integrate them into a Wi-Fi network, allowing them to communicate with other devices and gather useful data about your habits while you’re at home, which they can then use to modify your HVAC system’s behavior. The result will be both greatly reduced energy costs and a more comfortable environment at home.

Leaky Ducts

Old ductwork has probably sustained some considerable damage over the years. Therefore, holes both large and small will pockmark the ducts, and a substantial portion of any air that your HVAC system attempts to push into your home will leak out and escape through those holes. This will even further degrade the HVAC system’s effectiveness and efficiency.

Sealing and cleaning ductwork will thus likely be a major part of the work of renovating an old home. To stop air leaks, it may be necessary to insulate the ductwork as well.

Poor Airflow and Ventilation

With ever-changing HVAC equipment, it’s not likely that old homes will be especially well-ventilated. Ducts and vents will have all manner of obstructions clogging them, and the HVAC system that’s already there just won’t be able to push and filter air with much force.

This problem then brings us back to the issues that accompany decrepit and inefficient HVAC systems. Without proper airflow, HVAC systems just can’t perform reliably. Getting the air flowing again may require some significant overhauls.

Dirty Indoor Air Quality

Last but not least, the air in an old home may simply feel and smell unpleasant. In many old homes, a musty odor seems to waft through the air. Dust, pollen and many other common indoor air pollutants may be present in large quantities and have settled on surfaces, creating a stuffy atmosphere.

To a large extent, the cause of this problem is the poor ventilation mentioned above, which, in turn, is partly tied to the existence of an outmoded and ineffective HVAC system. Improving indoor air quality may involve installing air purifiers, getting a new HVAC system and other work.

As irritating as the foregoing HVAC issues can be, with the right sort of preparation and professional assistance, it’s possible to surmount them all. Whether you’ve moved into a venerable classic home or your house just has a few decades on it, a skilled HVAC team that knows its craft is just what you need. Call Gideon Heating & Air Conditioning and ask about our various residential HVAC services.

Image provided by iStock

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