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What is Emergency Heat?

March 27, 2017

You’ve probably seen this setting on your thermostat, but do you know what it’s really for? Emergency heat can be beneficial during times of extreme cold, but understanding how the setting actually works is essential to utilizing it properly.

What is Emergency Heat?

What is emergency heat?

Your HVAC system is already equipped with the ability to heat your home during the cold months of winter. But what happens when temperatures drop to severe lows and your system has a hard time keeping up? That’s where emergency heat comes in. It is a setting on your thermostat that can switch on automatically or be manually turned on.

How does emergency heat work?

Most Maryland HVAC systems pull in air from outside and heat it to warm your home. When extreme temperatures are present and don’t give the system much to work with, auxiliary heat may switch on automatically to provide a supplemental heat source. Emergency heat bypasses this option: it shuts down your heating unit and provides heat in “emergency” mode.

When should I use emergency heat?

It’s called “emergency” heat because it is intended for use in emergencies only. If temperatures outside are moderately chilly and your heating unit is just a little slow to keep up, use blankets or heavier clothing until your home warms up. If your home is very cold while the HVAC system is running and there is a drastic difference between the temperature your thermostat is set to and the temperature the inside of your home actually is, this most likely means your heating system isn’t working properly. Until you can have a technician out to diagnose and fix the problem, this is the most ideal time to use the emergency heat setting.

Does emergency heat cost more for my heating bill?

Yes. Using emergency heat still uses heat and electricity, and if used too often can cause your utility bill to skyrocket. As suggested above, you should only use this setting when there is an absolute emergency, and always with the intention of having a professional inspect and service your system as soon as possible following the first signs of a heating problem.

If you still have questions about emergency heat or believe your HVAC system is utilizing the emergency setting improperly, give the Maryland HVAC professionals at Cool Breeze a call today. Our licensed technicians are available 24/7 to help you when an issue with your HVAC system arises and will respond immediately in any emergency. Contact us today for more information on our services or to schedule an appointment!

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