Posted on January 22nd, 2020
Dangers of Waiting to Call for a Furnace Repair
When it’s cold outside there’s nothing quite like coming into a home that is warm and comfortable on the inside. Even if a winter storm is raging, you can relax knowing that you are protected from the elements as long as your furnace is working properly. When your furnace stops working, however, your home may no longer be the safe haven you need it to be. At Western Heating & Air Conditioning we know how important prompt furnace repair is for avoiding serious dangers that can put you, your home, and your family at risk.
People that avoid calling for furnace repair after their heaters stop working frequently are forced to turn to alternative heat sources. Candles, generators, and stove tops can all be fire hazards if used to heat a home and are not handled properly. Even space heaters can be dangerous if used as the only source of heat.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Portable generators and other heating sources can also carry the threat of causing carbon monoxide poisoning. In addition, furnaces that have not had routine maintenance, and are improperly ventilated can cause dangerous levels of carbon monoxide to accumulate in a home. Equipment older than 10 years is especially prone to cracked heat exchangers which can leak dangerous gases into the home.
Homes that are left without heating during the cold winter months for too long also run the risk of the plumbing freezing. Furthermore, pipes that freeze can break causing even more extensive problems due to water damage.
High Utility Bills
When furnaces are not running at their peak efficiency, hundreds of dollars can be wasted each month. A certified technician from Western Heating & Air Conditioning can evaluate the performance of your system and thoroughly inspect, adjust, and clean the components that keep your system running clean and efficient.
Avoid these four serious dangers by contacting the professionals at Western Heating & Air Conditioning for a furnace repair at the first signs of trouble. At Western Heating & Air we are available 24 hours a day so that you never have to wait to call for the service you need. Give us a call at 385-273-3200 or visit www.WesternHeatingAir.com to schedule your service today.
Posted on January 17th, 2020
As an HVAC Contractor, some of our greatest challenges involve keeping your home’s indoor environment at the right conditions while reducing your energy bills. Here are some things we want you to know that will give you the best outcome for your HVAC system.
- Your home will never be the perfect temperature everywhere
Heating and cooling a home to the perfect temperature year-round is virtually impossible. The American Society for Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) spends tons of time figuring out the details of components and comfort requirements for HVAC systems. There’s always something new to learn. Getting the perfect system that meets the individual needs of your family all the time would be expensive and cumbersome, if not completely impractical. What we can do is get you as close as possible while saving you money in the process.
- Ventilation is important
You might not feel ventilation the way you feel heat and cold, but you will still feel the effects of poor ventilation. Increased sickness, poor air quality, the spread of pathogens and deterioration of your home are all effects of limited fresh air.
- Mechanical rooms are not for storage
Storage is always a challenge and it might be tempting to put those old suitcases or books in your furnace room. But the space around your equipment is important for its function. Limiting clearances can cause your furnace to burn without proper oxygen levels or cause a fire. It also makes repair and maintenance challenging. Keep this room clear at all times.
- You must keep vent openings clear
In addition to keeping your mechanical equipment clear of other items, you must ensure that vent openings outside are not blocked. Poor venting of gas equipment can cause carbon monoxide production which will endanger your family.
- Old equipment is costing you big
You might be saving on a huge expense like a furnace replacement when you repair your old equipment, but the money that you pour into repairs is only part of the expense. Old equipment is inefficient and this costs you every time you pay your energy bills, which will add up over time. Replace your equipment now, and we will also include a free duct cleaning ($699 value).
- Skipping maintenance will cost you more in the long run
This seems obvious when you think about it but it’s so easy to procrastinate on regular maintenance, especially when things get busy. But dealing with a repair or complete replacement that could have been prevented will cost you more time and money. Not to mention the additional cost of having HVAC equipment run inefficiently.
If you want to discuss your HVAC concerns, we’d love to talk to you! Please give us a call at 385-273-3200 and we can help you optimize your home’s heating. You can also our website at www.WesternHeatingAir.com for more information.
Posted on January 15th, 2020
Performing DIY repairs on any large appliance, especially a furnace, can be intimidating. Thankfully, one of the most common furnace maintenance projects can be done with no specialized knowledge.
Learning how to replace a furnace filter should be part of every homeowner’s skill set. If you aren’t sure where to start, read on to find out how to know it’s time for a replacement and how to install a filter.
How Do You Know It’s Time to Change a Furnace Filter?
Many people leave the same filter in their furnace for months (or years) at a time. It’s an easy thing to forget, but filters should be changed out every 30-60 days to keep your heating system working at its best. The exact amount of time will change depending on your home’s existing air quality, whether you have pets, and if anyone in your family has breathing issues.
Single-use paper and fiberglass filters should be white and free of buildup or debris. If you notice that the filter is gray and dirty, don’t just shake off the dust and put it back. It’s time to replace it altogether.
If you have a permanent or reusable filter, you can still follow the steps below. The only difference is that instead of replacing it with a new one, you’ll clean it out with a water sprayer and let it dry off before putting it back in.
How to Replace a Furnace Filter
How long has it been since your filter was replaced? If it has been more than a few months (or you aren’t sure if it has ever been replaced), it’s time to open up your furnace and take a look at what’s inside.
1. Turn off the Furnace
Before opening up any appliance for maintenance, the first step is always to turn it off. Even though the danger of electrocution is small, you could burn yourself if the furnace has been running. There’s also a chance that the system could kick on while the filter is out and send debris circulating through the rest of your HVAC system.
Shut down your heating system by setting your thermostat to “off” and disconnecting power from the furnace. If it’s hot, wait for it to cool down before opening it up.
2. Open the Filter Compartment
Your furnace should have a marked service panel on one side. If you aren’t sure where to look, check the manual or look up your furnace model online. For old furnaces that don’t have manuals, look around the ductwork and blower compartment for a small door panel.
3. Remove and Inspect the Old Filter
Now that the service panel is open, you should be able to peek inside and see your old filter in place. Before you take it out for the first time, make a note or take a photo of how it’s installed so you can put the new one in the right way.
Pay special attention to airflow direction—you may want to mark it with an arrow on your furnace or ductwork for future reference. The arrow should point toward the fan. If you reinstall the new filter backward, its efficiency will decrease.
Take the old filter out and immediately seal it in a trash bag to keep the dust from becoming airborne. It should slide out of the furnace with little effort.
With the filter slot empty, take a moment to brush out any visible debris from inside your furnace. A large buildup of debris is a sign that it’s time to schedule a heating tune-up.
4. Purchase a Matching Replacement Filter
Check your furnace’s manual and the existing filter to make sure you buy the correct replacement. You can find furnace filters at most stores with a hardware section. Ordering them online is also simple and can give you a wider selection to choose from.
When buying a replacement, make sure you choose the correct size, material, and MERV rating for your furnace.
5. Install the New Filter
Now that you’re ready to put the new filter in, use the directions you left for yourself earlier to insert it in the right direction. Match up the airflow direction on the filter with your filter’s fan unit and slide it into place. Then, close up the service panel, and you’re ready to go.
6. Record the Date of Installation
To make sure you don’t forget to check your filter before it’s too late, write the date down for later reference. Place a sticker or magnetic notepad on or near your furnace to record the dates of your filter changes and any other furnace maintenance and repairs.
7. Restart the Furnace
Now that everything is back in place, you can reconnect the power to your furnace and turn your HVAC system back on with the thermostat. If your old filter was caked with dust before you replaced it, there might be a noticeable improvement in your home’s air quality.
Why You Should Never Ignore a Dirty or Damaged Filter
Not only can keeping your filter clean and updated extend the life of your furnace, but it will also make a huge difference in your home’s air quality.
The EPA recommends using a variety of methods to improve your indoor air quality (IAQ). Using clean filters in your furnace and HVAC unit is one of the easiest ways to trap pollutants before they enter your lungs. If your filter is damaged or caked with dust, your furnace will recirculate harmful particles back into your home’s air.
This is especially important to consider if anyone in your home has asthma or allergies or if you have dander-producing pets. Even if everyone has healthy lungs, a dusty furnace can fill your entire house with an unpleasant burning odor.
Looking for Help with Furnace Repairs?
Even though you now know how to replace a furnace filter yourself, sometimes you need a professional to help you out with repairs.
When that happens, call us at Western Heating & Air Conditioning. We can help you tune-up, fix, and replace your furnace when it’s no longer working at its best. Contact us today to schedule your appointment with a 24/7 service technician.
Posted on January 8th, 2020
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