Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Simple Tips to Keep your Furnace Running Smoothly

Properly maintaining your furnace is key to avoiding common furnace malfunctions throughout the unit's lifetime. Luckily, your furnace's most basic maintenance needs are simple tasks that when performed on a regular basis can prolong your unit's life and save you money. The maintenance tips provided below will help ensure your furnace runs smoothly all season long.

Call a Heating Expert

The most important and beneficial maintenance step you can take is calling an experienced heating technician to schedule your furnace's yearly tune-up. During a tune-up, a technician inspects your furnace for faulty parts and cleans the unit for optimal efficiency. Skipping a tune-up for even one year can lead to higher energy bills and a possible furnace breakdown.

Replace the Air Filter

If a tune-up is number one on your furnace maintenance list, replacing the air filter on a consistent basis should be listed as number 2. Your unit's air filter performs an essential job, which is stopping dust, hair, and other types of debris from clogging your furnace. If you don't change the filter, the debris it catches will eventually block the unit’s airflow, meaning your furnace will need to work harder to heat your home. Unfortunately, this places a large amount of stress on the mechanical parts that operate your unit, which will ultimately lead to your furnace breaking down.

How often you change your filter depends on your home. If you have pets, especially ones that shed heavily, you may find your filter needs replacing every month. On the other hand, if your home is pet free and you tend to dust and vacuum your house a couple times a week, your air filter may last up to three months. To ensure your filter is being changed in a timely manner, it is recommended you at least check it once a month and from there decide whether the air filter needs to be swapped out for a new one.

Keep an Eye on the Pilot Light

If your furnace has a pilot light, it's a good idea to check it from time to time. Any flame color other than blue indicates the ratio of gas to oxygen your burning in your unit is incorrect. An orange or yellow flame also points to a dirty burner. Both issues are serious and require immediate attention from a heating technician.

Clean the Air Registers

Dirty air registers can negatively affect your furnace's efficiency and health. Vacuuming the vents and areas around the vents will eliminate this issue while also cutting back on the dust and pollen that circulates when the furnace turns on.

If you would like to schedule your furnace's yearly tune-up or you have questions about your system's performance, please contact us today and we'll be happy to help you.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Does a Dirty Air Filter Affect My HVAC System?

As a homeowner, you have likely heard that it is important to change your HVAC filter regularly. However, you are not alone if you have wondered whether it is really that important to change your air filter as often as recommended. Would waiting a few extra months really hurt? The answer is yes. In fact, you may be surprised to learn just how big of an impact a dirty air filter can have on your HVAC system. If you have been tempted to wait to replace an air filter to save time and money, here is a look at just a few of the problems doing so can cause.

Increased Energy Consumption

When you do not replace your air filter frequently enough, your HVAC system will have to work harder to pull air through the clogged filter. This means that your system will have to run longer and consume more energy to heat/cool your home, which can cost you a pretty penny over time! On the flip side, replacing your air filter regularly can then save you money as your HVAC system will not have to work as hard.

You Won't be as Comfortable

Of course, if your air filter is severely clogged and your HVAC system is having trouble getting enough air, this can also affect your comfort level. Without enough airflow, your HVAC system will likely have a harder time heating/cooling your home, which means it won't be able to keep you comfortable when you need it most.

You Could Damage Your System

Not only will the strain of a dirty air filter cause more energy to be consumed, but it will also cause unnecessary wear and tear to your HVAC system’s components. This can result in your system needing costly repairs if your motor fails, and it could even cause your heater or air conditioner to overheat and fail. In fact, not changing a dirty air filter frequently enough is one of the most common causes of premature failure in HVAC systems.

While it can seem like a hassle, replacing your HVAC system's air filters regularly is critical in ensuring that it is able to keep you comfortable in your home. Contact us to learn more about the importance of regular HVAC maintenance!

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Areas Not to Place your AC’s Condenser for Increased Performance

A single air conditioning unit comprises of two main components. The indoor system and the outdoor system, also known as the condenser. Both systems have to work together for the air conditioner to be effective.

Air conditioners are prone to breaking down. But with a few tips, you can get your system to work as desired for ages without developing serious faults. Sometimes it can be as simple as rethinking the placement of your AC's condenser. Here are some of the best locations you can place your condenser for enhanced performance.

Exposed Under the Sun

If your AC condenser is placed in an area where it's exposed to the sun, it is likely to overheat. A better alternative would be to place your outdoor unit outside under the shade. Point out those areas around your house where there's limited sun exposure. It could be the eastern or northern side depending on your location. If there's none, you could build a shade above the unit. The farther your AC's condenser is from the sun, the less likely it will be to overheat.

In an Attic or Garage

To protect their outdoor unit from the sun, some homeowners prefer to place their unit inside areas such as the garage or the attic. An outdoor unit is referred to as such because it needs to be outside in the open. Remember that an outdoor unit works to collect and release hot air outside.

If you place your condenser in an enclosed area like an attic or the garage, it is likely to overheat and possibly cause a fire hazard.

Where There's Limited Airflow

Of importance is that even as you keep your AC's condenser under a shade outside, the area should also be open. Away from bushes, from thick trees, other types of vegetation, in between walls that are too close, and so on. Such obstacles end up limiting your AC's access to cool fresh air. This, in turn, limits the performance of your entire air conditioning unit.

The smartest route to installing a working air conditioning system is to work with an experienced contractor. For professional AC installation, maintenance, and repair services, please contact us today.

Monday, September 16, 2019

Air Conditioning Repair: Examining, Diagnosing and Repairing

When you're looking for good air conditioning repair, it's necessary to find a reliable, dependable contractor. This means hiring a contractor who is efficient, professional and courteous—all good qualities to look for in someone who is going to perform an important service for you.

Examining Your Air Conditioner

A good air conditioning contractor will examine your air conditioner carefully in order to find the source of its malfunction and then give you an estimate. In fact, if they are unable to find out what's causing your AC to malfunction in that moment, they might even take it away to run some tests on it.

It's nearly impossible to just turn on an air conditioner and immediately tell the other person what's wrong with it. If your air conditioning contractor is doing that, it’s possible that they're not very reliable.

Diagnosing the Problem

A good air conditioning contractor will be able to answer your questions about what's wrong with your machine. They will let you know if any parts need changing or if it's better to give up on that AC unit altogether. This might be the case if the AC is 10-15 years old.

On the other hand, it's possible that the problem is a minor one and can be resolved by adding coolant or changing one of the parts, such as the condenser coil. If your AC contractor is unable to tell you the exact source of the problem, then you may want to go with a different contractor instead.

Efficient Air Conditioning Repair

A good AC contractor will also be able to solve your problem in a matter of days. If they're holding on to your AC for a week or more, then they're probably not very efficient.

If your air conditioning contractor exhibits any unprofessional behavior, you should probably choose someone more reliable the next time around. Contact us today!

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Keeping Your Air Conditioning System User-Friendly

There are a few basic maintenance tasks that can help with keeping your air running efficiently in your home! We encourage all of our clients to actively practice good maintenance of their AC system year-round. Keep reading to learn more.

Check your Refrigerant

It’s very important to check is how much refrigerant your AC system has. The extra strain your system will be under from having insufficient refrigerant can result in your air conditioner wearing out a lot faster than it would with ample supplies. This will result in you having to spend a lot more time and money making additional repairs to your system as well as boosting the costs of the energy your air conditioner will require.

Air Filters

Filters typically become dirty if they are not changed for a long time. Seeing as most people's AC units are left in storage for a good part of the year when not in use, it is important to make sure that you replace those filters, since using dirty filters can both lower your system's energy efficiency and result in worse overall air quality. Once you open your unit and see a dirty filter, you’ll never forget how important it is to stay on top of replacing it!

Schedule a Tune-up of your system

You can easily catch a number of less obvious problems with your air conditioning through a routine system inspection. Routine inspections can help save you money by catching minor issues before they become serious problems as well as ensuring that your air conditioning is working as well as it possibly can.
We encourage you to contact our team today to schedule a maintenance check of your HVAC system. This time of year is ideal for getting ahead of making sure your system is working properly before you begin to transition over to heating.

Friday, July 19, 2019

5 Ways in Which Air Conditioning Is Beneficial for Health

People often think of air conditioning as a comfort or even a luxury and not a necessity. However, there are times and situations in which an air conditioner is not a frivolous expense but a necessary one. If you live in an area where you experience extreme heat, air conditioning becomes a necessity, just like heating is a necessity in places which are cold. There are certain days every year when heat warnings are issued, even in places which are not usually that hot. So on these days at least, it's best to stay in an air conditioned environment. Here are 5 ways in which air conditioning is beneficial for health:

1. Prevents Dehydration: This is probably the most important way in which air conditioning can benefit you. It's easy to get dehydrated in the summer, even if you aren't doing anything very strenuous. Simple activities like cleaning and cooking can lead you into sweating more and becoming dehydrated.

2. Prevents You from Getting Summer Colds: Wandering around in the sun, sweating, and being exposed to the elements can lead to summer colds. Staying in an environment with a controlled temperature can actually help keep you healthy.

3. Prevents Heatstroke: Heatstroke is a real concern when temperatures are high. It's caused by an excess of heat or doing something strenuous, like working out in the heat. If left untreated, heatstroke can cause serious damage to your organs and even be fatal. If you are thinking of doing something strenuous, it’s better to do it in a climate-controlled space.

4. Prevents Allergies: The air you breathe in with air conditioning is not just cooler, it's also cleaner, with less dust and other. If you are allergic to something in your environment, you can prevent an onset of sneezing by being in air conditioning.

5. Prevents Stress: Even if you're not terribly dehydrated or sneezing all over the place, an excess of heat still places quite a bit of stress on your body and, as a result, your mind. You can reduce the extent of your stress and increase your work productivity by being in an air conditioned environment.

Are you interested in installing a new air conditioning unit or maintaining or repairing the one you have, contact us today.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Prevention Is Better Than Cure: Get an Air Conditioning Tune-up

Have you ever heard the saying, "Prevention is better than cure?" It's true of human beings and our health, but it's also true of air conditioning! When it comes to human beings, you'll find that exercising regularly and eating well lead into maintaining health and preventing illness. Similarly, when it comes to air conditioning, getting your unit serviced or getting a tuneup can help to prevent it from breaking down in the future and needing repair. Here are some of the benefits of getting a tune-up:

It Keeps Your AC Running Smoothly

Do you find that you have to keep turning the temperature lower and lower in order to keep your AC running the way it should? Or do you find that it works well at some times and not at others? Maybe it's emitting strange noises. A tune-up should take care of any inconsistencies in the way your AC is running. Just as an annual checkup with the doctor helps a human being in taking care of their health, an air conditioning tune-up helps an AC to stay in the best condition possible.

It Prevents It from Breaking Down

If your AC is not working perfectly but you keep ignoring the problem, it's going to break down sooner or later and stop working altogether. And when this happens, it means that you're going to have to spend some time without an AC because AC repair is not immediate. In order to prevent this, you can get an air conditioning tune-up. It's not a guarantee against your AC breaking down, but it does reduce the chances of that happening.

It Lowers Your Energy Bill

When your air conditioner isn't working perfectly, it's going to suck in more energy. You may not think that the difference is going to be much, but it all adds up in the long run. So, if you want to keep your energy bill low, it's better for all your appliances and your air conditioning unit to be in good condition.

The experts at Blackie’s Heating & Cooling can help provide you with the tune-up your home needs. Get in touch with our team today by requesting service through our website or giving us a call at (217) 442-1440.