Scheduling a Maintenance Inspection

Simple Fixes to Ensure Your Room Cools Effectively

Posted by on January 18, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Simple Fixes to Ensure Your Room Cools Effectively

If you own an air-conditioning unit, and you have discovered it is not emitting cool air to the level you desire, you will most likely want to take the necessary steps in finding out the reasoning for this occurrence. An air conditioner that is not cooling your home effectively will need to be checked over to eradicate the problem. Here are some spots you can check in determining why your unit is not working as it should. Check That There Are No Crevices Present to Let Air Escape If the room you are trying to cool has drafts around windows, the air conditioner will have to work longer and at more frequent intervals to get your room to your desired temperature. Fill in any gaps with pieces of weather-stripping to effectively seal the room from outside temperatures. Caulk can also be applied around window frames to aid in stopping air from escaping. Clean the Unit to Remove Any Accumulated Debris If your air-conditioning unit becomes filled with dust and dirt from routine use, it will not work as efficiently. Unplug your unit and remove the cover to expose the coils underneath. These should remain free of debris for maximum air-cooling output. Use a soft-bristled vacuum-cleaner attachment tool to whisk away any dirt you find. The coils can then be wiped down with a mild detergent mixed with water. Let the coils dry in their entirety before you plug your unit back in. It is also a good idea to regularly check the air filter and replace it at the first sign of discoloration. Make Sure Your Unit Is Large Enough to Cool the Room It is necessary to have an air conditioner that is of the right BTU (British Thermal Unit) output for the room you are trying to cool. A good rule of thumb is to use an air conditioner that emits 20 BTU for each square foot of space in a room. This number varies slightly if your room is primarily shaded or if it is occupied by more than two people regularly. If your room is too large for the unit you have purchased, you may want to consider moving the unit to a smaller space and purchasing a new one that can handle the cooling effectively. An air-conditioning service can assist you with some recommendations regarding different brands and styles to keep up with the airflow needed. Talk to a company such as Kassel Appliance & AC Repair for more personalized...

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Gas Furnace Slow to Come On? It Might Be Your Cold-Air Return Ducts

Posted by on January 16, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Gas Furnace Slow to Come On? It Might Be Your Cold-Air Return Ducts

If your gas furnace doesn’t come on right away or at all, even after you adjust the thermostat, you may think that the appliance is too old and needs to be replaced. Sometimes furnaces experience problems if the cold-air return ducts in your home clog up with dust. The ducts allow cold air to leave the home and circulate back to your furnace. If the furnace doesn’t receive cold air from the furnace, it might not know exactly when to cycle on and off. Here’s how dirty return air ducts affect your furnace and what you can do to make your situation better.  How Does Dirt and Damage Affect Your Return Air Ducts? You may not always see it, but dust circulates the air in your home every day. It settles on appliances, furnishings, and even your skin. During the winter months, your furnace picks up dust as it circulates air through the house. Over time, the dust builds up and blocks your cold-air return ducts in your flooring or elsewhere in the house. Cold-air return ducts remove cool air from your indoor environment and transport it to your gas furnace. Although an air filter absorbs most of the dust, some particles can escape the filter and pass into the blower compartment of your appliance. The blower compartment houses the hearts of your furnace: the motor, the fan, and the combustion chamber. The blower motor, fan, and combustion chamber rely on a clean environment to receive, heat, and transfer air to the plenum, which redistributes the air back into the home through supply ducts. If the three parts above collect too much dust, they stop working properly. Your furnace won’t know when the home becomes too cold or when the thermostat kicks on. It’s possible for you to improve your furnace’s poor performance with the right tips.  How Do You Fix the Problem? To get started, turn off your furnace and locate the cold-air return ducts in your house. Most homes use floor and baseboard vents for their return ducts, so look in these locations first. Every room of your home may contain a vent as well. If you can’t find the vents or signs of any return ducts in your home, stop and contact a furnace contractor for assistance. But if you do find the vents, you can clean them.  If the grated surfaces of the vents are wide enough, you should be able to look inside them. You may even see visible signs of dust and other problems, such as balls of hair and pieces of paper. Don’t be alarmed if you find tiny toys, bobby pins, and other items inside the ducts. If you see these things, uncover the vents and vacuum out the ducts.  If possible, use a damp rag to wipe out the insides of the ducts. You want to make the ducts as clean as possible to improve your furnace’s airflow. Return power to your furnace and monitor its performance. If the furnace works great, you solved the problem. If the furnace still takes too long to come on, call a local contractor such as Getzschman Heating, LLC for further...

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Basic Tips For Improving Your Water Heater’s Performance

Posted by on December 6, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Basic Tips For Improving Your Water Heater’s Performance

A home’s water heater is often the most energy intensive plumbing appliance in the house. Not surprisingly, budget-conscious homeowners may want to know simple ways that they can improve the performance of their water heater so that they can lower their overall energy expenses. Have The Water Heater Professionally Insulated You are likely aware of the benefits of having a well-insulated home, but you might be overlooking the benefits that insulation can provide your water heater. This is especially true if you have placed your water heater in the basement or another cool, drafty area of the house. By adding insulation to the exterior of the water heater, you can dramatically reduce the amount of heat that is lost to convective cooling, which will reduce the overall energy needs of the water heater. However, you should never install this insulation without professional help. If you apply the insulation incorrectly, you may block the water heater’s airflow, which can lead to overheating. Additionally, insulation that comes into contact with the extremely hot parts of the water heater may be more likely to ignite. By hiring a professional water heater service technician, you will avoid this risk as these individuals have the expertise to be able to safely make this upgrade to your water heater. Put A Clock In The Bathroom One of the easiest ways of reducing the energy costs of your water heater is to simply use less hot water. Showering can be one of the most water-intensive activities that you do, and it can put tremendous strain on the water heater. To help you gradually reduce the amount of time it takes for you to shower, it may be wise to place a clock in the bathroom. By positioning it so that you can see it while you are showering, you can easily know how long your shower has been. This will help you to develop the habit of taking short and efficient showers. Keep The Water Heater Clean Sediment and mineral deposits can dramatically reduce the ability of your water heater to sufficiently warm the water. In addition to making your system more likely to run out of hot water when you are using it, this can cause the energy needs of your water heater to dramatically increase. Avoiding this problem will require you to have your water heater cleaned by a professionally every few years or whenever you notice that the system has started to lose efficiency. In addition to these professional cleanings, you also need to prevent dust from accumulating on or around the unit. This dust will block the airflow and damage any motors, which makes dusting the water heater each month a worthwhile task to...

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Three Ways To Save On Your Air Conditioning Costs This Summer

Posted by on October 10, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Ways To Save On Your Air Conditioning Costs This Summer

In certain parts of the country, the transition into the fall season doesn’t necessarily mean cooler temperatures. A number of people still need to beat the heat with their air conditioning. If you’re in this group, finding a way to stay cool without paying high energy cost is key. Here are a handful of tips to assist you with accomplishing this. Check Your Ceiling Fans You can reduce your dependence on your air conditioning unit by checking the direction of your ceiling fans. When you are trying to keep your home cool, a ceiling fan should be operated in a counterclockwise direction. When a ceiling fan operates in this manner, it forces the cool air down, where you are. When a ceiling fan is rotating in a clockwise direction, it will actually push the cool air up towards the ceiling. Simply adjusting the direction of the ceiling fans in your home can help prevent you from having to lower the temperature on your thermostat to keep cool, which can help you save on your energy costs. Don’t Forget To Change The Filter Many homeowners make it a priority to change their air filters during the summer months because of how frequently they use their units. However, during the fall, this task sometimes gets overlooked. If you want to keep your energy costs lower, you need not make this mistake. When the filter is dirty, this limits the amount of cool air that can pass through and into your home. When air flow is reduced, the air conditioner has to work harder to maintain the temperature on the thermostat. By keeping the filter clean, you ensure optimal air flow and keep your costs lower. Have An Inspection Performed Have your unit inspected. The intense heat of summer can put a great deal of wear on an air conditioner unit. This is especially the case when it comes to the coils. As the unit operates, it’s not uncommon for dirt, dust, and other debris to collect on the coils. The dirtier the coils, the harder the compressor has to work, increasing the risk of overheating. When the compressor overheats, it can quickly fail and when a compressor fails, it has a reduced ability to produce cool air. In the end, not only will you pay more to operate the unit, but also with repair cost. Having the unit inspected can quickly highlight this or any other problem. If you’re still using your air conditioner, make sure you’re working to keep your cost lower. For more information, visit a site like...

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Tips For Maximizing Your Radiant Floor Installation During Home Construction

Posted by on August 6, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Maximizing Your Radiant Floor Installation During Home Construction

If your home construction project has reached the heating system selection stage, you may find yourself considering radiant floor heating instead of a furnace. Installing the system isn’t complicated, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some risks of problems. Before you actually have the system installed, it’s beneficial to understand the potential problem areas of the construction and installation phase. Here are a few of the things you should watch for during construction to ensure that you’re getting the most from your radiant floor heat. How Does Home Construction Affect Radiant Floor Heating? Unlike furnace heat that just requires the installation of a furnace and air ducts, radiant floor heating becomes a permanent part of your home’s construction. It’s built into the flooring and requires a delicate balance of insulation and subflooring. There are a few things to discuss with the building contractors ahead of time. Put insulation under the foundation. Radiant heat is installed in the foundation when the concrete is still somewhat wet. This radiates the heat through the concrete, which transfers up into your flooring. In order to maximize that heat in the concrete slab, you need sufficient insulation under the foundation to help hold the heat in. If there isn’t enough insulation, the heat will dissipate into the ground. Add heat reflection on the upper floors. You can install radiant floor heating on the upper stories as well, but it means putting the heating system above the floor joists. That means you’ll need to have some heat reflectors put in beneath the joists to keep the heat there. If your builder skips the reflectors, you’ll risk having some heat seep out to the lower floor. Choose an optimal flooring style. The type of flooring you install is important, because it will have a direct effect on how well the heat transfers through. Avoid choosing things like carpet, because the carpeting will prevent the heat from reaching the room. Instead, consider hardwood, tile or linoleum for your flooring so that you will get the most benefit from the heat. Your contractor can help you explore the choices to find a flooring that you’re happy with that will also allow the heat to radiate. With these tips, you’ll be better prepared to ensure success with your new radiant floor heating. If you’re ready to take the leap, talk to your building contractor or a heating company like C & D Cooling & Heating Co about integrating a radiant heat system in your new home’s design. The more proactive and aware you are from the start, the greater your chances of success will...

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What You Need To Do If Cold Air Isn’t Coming From Your AC Unit

Posted by on July 6, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What You Need To Do If Cold Air Isn’t Coming From Your AC Unit

Do you know what to do if your air conditioner suddenly stops blowing cold air? You can call a 24 hour air conditioning repair service to have the problem fixed or you can try to fix the problem yourself. One of the common reasons that an air conditioner stops blowing cold air is because the condenser is dirty. This is a simple fix, so before you call a repair company, see if cleaning the unit fixes your problem. What You Need: Owner’s manual Screwdriver Long, handheld brush Vacuum cleaner and bristle brush attachment Garbage bag Duct tape Garden hose Hose nozzle that lets you spray a gentle stream of water Instructions: Turn off your air conditioner unit. Different models of air conditioners are powered on and off differently, so look in your owner’s manual to find instructions for completely shutting down the unit and follow them. Alternatively, you can turn off the power to the unit at the circuit breaker. After you cut power to the unit, wait a few minutes before proceeding to make sure the charge to the unit has died completely. Unscrew the air conditioner’s top and side panels. Then, remove them completely. If the fan is attached to one of the panels, make sure you don’t damage any of the wiring during the process. Remove debris and dirt from the condenser coils and the metal panel that protects them using a long, handheld brush. Vacuum any remaining debris and dirt out from around the condenser coils and the bottom of the air conditioner unit using a bristled vacuum cleaner attachment. Place a garbage bag over the air conditioner’s motor and wiring. Then, use duct tape to hold it in place. Attach a nozzle to your garden hose that allow you to spray a gentle stream of water. Use the garden hose to spray down your air conditioner’s condenser coils and protective plates. Let them dry completely. Reattach the side and top panels. Turn your thermostat off, and restart your air conditioning unit. Then, reset your thermostat. After you’ve cleaned the condenser coils completely and restarted your AC unit, it should be blowing out cold air from the vents again. If you can’t feel cold air coming from the vents, there is probably something else wrong with your unit. You should consider calling a 24-hour emergency air conditioning repair company to access the damage to the unit and make any needed...

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3 Ways A Digital Multi-Meter Can Help You Diagnose A Non-Functioning AC Condensing Unit

Posted by on May 19, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Ways A Digital Multi-Meter Can Help You Diagnose A Non-Functioning AC Condensing Unit

The condensing unit in a central air conditioning system is where the cooling process begins once the thermostat is dialed down. A compressor is kicked into action and produces a gas refrigerant required to fuel the entire cooling process. Problems in the initial stages of condensing unit function can thwart your entire system and leave you with warm, uncomfortable air inside your home. There are a number of parts inside the condensing unit that can go bad. But using a digital multi-meter can help you troubleshoot and determine whether one of three important parts are what is causing the failure. Start and Run Capacitors Start and run capacitors are both parts meant to hold an electrical current and give the compressor some help where needed. The start compressor gives a boost when the system first triggers into action and the run capacitor is on standby in case there’s an electrical interruption that could shut down the compressor. A problem in one or both of the capacitors can keep the compressor from turning on or can make the compressor turn on then off quickly. You can test the start and run capacitors using your digital multi-meter and its Ohms settings. But first you need to do a bit of prep work since the capacitors store electricity. Turn off the main power to the condensing unit at the fuses or breakers. Now you need to discharge the capacitors. You can discharge the run capacitor by laying the end of an insulated screwdriver over the capacitor’s terminals for a few moments. Discharge the start capacitor by unhooking its wires, hooking up the multi-meter probes, and then turning the multi-meter to AC setting. Wait until the AC reading hits zero and the start capacitor is discharged. Testing works the same on both capacitors. Hook up the multi-meter probes to the terminals on the capacitors and set the machine to the Ohms reading. Locate the Ohms listing printed on each capacitor to see what the target range is for the reading. If the reading doesn’t match the range, you need to replace the part. Compressor Testing You can also test the compressor itself though the testing is a bit trickier. If you have any doubts about the process, call in an air conditioning repair company like JV Systems Air Conditioning And Heating of Tampa Bay Inc for help. Set the multi-meter to continuity testing mode. On many digital multi-meters, this mode means that the meter will beep if there is continuity and won’t beep if there isn’t. Note that a beep alone doesn’t mean that your compressor is fully functioning but it can be an indication that the problem is elsewhere in your condensing unit. Conduct the test by locating the terminals on the compressor, which should have letter labels of C, R, and S. You want to hook your multi-meter probes to each pair of these terminals and wait for the beep. Continue on to the next pair if you do hear the beep. Start with C and R, then R and S, then C and S to ensure all pairs are...

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How To Clean Your Evaporator Coils

Posted by on February 23, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Clean Your Evaporator Coils

Functionality of your heat pump is very dependent on several components. One of the most central components of the entire HVAC system is the evaporator unit. Every system will have an evaporator coil which is an essential transfer device that drives the heating and air conditioning systems.  This is why it is so important to make sure your evaporator coil’s are in top, working order at all times. This article explains how to check and clean your evaporator coils. Finding the Evaporator Unit The first thing you need to do is identify where the evaporator coils are. The coils are usually in a unit that is attached to or next to the heat pump. Most commonly, it is in a separate sheet metal cabinet attached to the top of the furnace. You will probably need to remove the access door to even see the evaporator. Some units will have a vented access door, so you can see without removing the door. When you identify which access door leads to the evaporator, you can remove it with a screwdriver. Cleaning the Evaporator Unit Before you start to actually work on the evaporator, you need to make sure the power is cut. There is not plug, so you will need to turn it off at the breaker box. Once you open the access door you should see the coils, which are stacked in the shape of a triangle. There is usually very limited space within the dark space and you will need a flashlight. Look for dust, dirt, mold or animal droppings. A simple hose vacuum will allow you to clean out much of the compartment. A wet rag will also be helpful for rubbing off stubborn grime. In the worst case scenario can use a wire brush to clean and polish the coils. Of course, the coils don’t need to be sparkly clean, but any dirt on the surface can ultimately hamper the heat transfer and make your entire heating and air conditioning unit less energy efficient. When you are done cleaning your evaporator unit, you can reattach the access doors and then turn the power back on. You might not immediately notice the huge amount of increased airflow when you are running your air conditioner or heater, but you should start to enjoy the benefits when you see your monthly bill. A clean evaporator unit will also use electricity and results in a more efficient HVAC...

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Heating Your Home Without Breaking The Bank

Posted by on January 15, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Heating Your Home Without Breaking The Bank

Saving money on your heating bill can be as simple as taking on some basic home maintenance tasks. Not only are many of them affordable, but their impact will be more than sufficient to offset the cost of implementing the fix. From reducing drafts in your home to improving the efficiency of your central heating unit, you’ll cut costs with a minimal cash outlay. Locating the Drafts There are a few key locations that you need to focus on to eliminate heat loss in your home, and while everyone knows about doors and windows there are a few that are less likely to be addressed. Your home’s power outlets are just a clear passage for cold air to penetrate into your home from the attic, crawlspace, basement or exterior wall. Further, while windows are on your mind, remember that it’s not just the window itself that can cause heat loss. Resolving drafty power outlets only takes a small fix using a foam cut out available at most hardware stores. The foam is cut to the shape and dimension of a standard household outlet, creating a barrier and blocking air flow. Meanwhile, the same concept should be applied to your window frames, back filling the gap between the frame and the stud with expanding foam to create a thermal break. You may need to remove some molding to get at that gap, but the time and expense will be well worth it in the long run. Addressing Your HVAC Woes Any discussion of your heating costs needs to involve your HVAC system, as this will be the primary source of the expense. As a result, basic maintenance should include regular inspections of your furnace and your duct lines. The harder your furnace works to maintain your desired temperature the more you’ll spend on the luxury. Worn or aging parts should be replaced, but without a professional it’s hard to know what actually needs it and what is normal wear. Further, inspecting your air ducts will often locate holes, gaps or other points where warm air is being lost. Sealing these gaps and replacing old parts will ensure that you’re not paying more for heat you’re not benefiting from. You shouldn’t be experiencing a feeling of dread each time you open a winter electric bill. Dealing with maintenance issues and locating the source of your heat loss will ensure that you’re not paying to heat your house twice. Better still, you’ll have the peace of mind that comes with knowing just what state your HVAC system is actually in. Contact professionals, such as Ricks Repair Service, for further...

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Three Simple Steps That Can Extend Your A/C Unit’s Life

Posted by on November 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Simple Steps That Can Extend Your A/C Unit’s Life

Having your air conditioner serviced annually — typically at the start of the season that you’ll use it regularly — can help to keep the unit running in optimal shape and avoid any unexpected breakdowns that will cause you and your family to suffer in the heat. During your day-to-day usage of the air conditioner, you can take a variety of steps to limit unnecessary wear and tear on the unit and reduce the likelihood of it needing to be repaired. Extending the life of your A/C is something with which every homeowner should be acquainted; here are three ways to accomplish this goal. Allow The Temperature To Rise When The House Is Empty Arguably the simplest way to extend the life of your air conditioner is to avoid having it run around the clock. While the idea of a cool, refreshing home is certainly appealing, there’s little value in having your home ice cold while it’s empty during the day. Take some time to familiarize yourself with your thermostat and set it so the interior temperature of your home rises during the day. Then, you can have the unit come back on in the late afternoon so your house is cool when you arrive home from work. This simple step will keep the unit from running unnecessarily, which can prevent it from wearing out prematurely. Don’t Allow Heat Into Your Home Where possible, it’s best to avoid introducing heat into your home. Added heat will force the A/C to have to run longer to drop the temperature, which puts undue wear on the unit. Avoid using your dryer and your stove as much as possible; a clothes line and cooking on the BBQ are effective ways to dry your clothing and cook. Additionally, keep your window curtains drawn to avoid heat entering your home via the windows and, if you find that the sunlight is still entering through your curtains, consider installing insulated curtains. Be Diligent About Changing Your Filter Changing the air filter on your air conditioning is an important maintenance task that allows your home to cool more quickly, which can give the A/C some much-needed rest. The schedule for changing the filter depends on a couple variables. Generally, it’s acceptable to change it every three months, but if you live in a home with pets that shed their fur, every two months is ideal. The process of changing the filter takes only a minute and is easy to accomplish through following the instructions on the package or in your air conditioner manual. For more information, talk to a company like Enright and...

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