Not all household maintenance issues can wait for a regular appointment. Some problems with your heating and cooling system on a hot or cold enough day can put lives in danger if not attended to fast.

Here are some pointers about how to tell if you have an emergency needing immediate attention, and what to do about it.

Strange smells

Especially if they come from your vent system or the central unit, and especially if they are accompanied by headaches or nausea. There could be a gas or oil leak if you have that kind of furnace, and while an oil leak is a fire hazard, carbon monoxide from a gas leak could kill you while you sleep.

Open the windows, get out of the house, and call a professional. If you smell burning rubber or plastic, it could be a sign that the insulation from some wiring is melting through, and that is also a fire hazard, in addition to a sign that your system may break down soon if you don’t act. Shut off your system and call someone.

Strange sounds

This may seem less obvious than the smells, but a sudden and unusual sound from your system may be an indicator of a serious problem. Some components may have become damaged, and that may snowball into a bigger problem later.

Weak airflow/wrong temperature

If it’s blowing hot when it should be cooling, or vice versa, or if it’s hardly blowing at all when it should be, that could be a serious problem. There may be a blockage somewhere in the duct system, and you need a technician to know for sure. If there is and you don’t get it fixed, it could cause the whole system to fail.

Unresponsive system

If you turn on your HVAC system and nothing happens, and if it’s very hot or very cold out, you need service as soon as possible. It’s not common, but when it does happen you know it’s not something you can just live with for a while. The system isn’t even working partially. There is probably something wrong with the unit itself, and you need an HVAC technician.

Twin Air is on call

As with the discolored water, not all HVAC emergencies necessarily need a technician to come out. Some problems you may be able to handle yourself with a technician on the phone to walk you through it. But if you get any of these symptoms, call a professional no matter what.

Twin Air in Manassas has technicians on call and ready to answer the phone 24/7. Availability depends on any other emergency calls coming in at the same time, but we always answer and we always come out as soon as we can. We can even walk you through some steps to mitigate or fix the issue yourself.

If you have an HVAC emergency in the Northern Virginia area, call us now at (703) 754-1062. For any non-emergency issues, you can also contact us on our website.

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