5 Signs Your Furnace Is Dying

January 18th, 2021
furnace-old

You don’t want to have a dead furnace in a Maryland winter—that’s something you’ll know if you’ve spent even one cold day here. If you’ve had your current furnaces for over ten years, it is beginning to move into the territory where it could fail on you. Keeping up with routine maintenance each spring will make this less likely, but as the furnace continues to age, it will eventually reach a point where it won’t go on any further and repairs will be too costly to keep it running. 

Fortunately, furnaces rarely burn their last without giving out several warnings of their imminent demise. If you pay attention to the furnace’s operation, you can catch some of these omens of a dying furnace and call for HVAC technicians in time. Our team of experts can tell if the furnace can be rescued with repairs or if a replacement is better. Below are five of the major signs to call us for assistance:

1. Loud operation

Furnaces make some noise when they run, but the sound of the burners and the fans isn’t distracting and you’re used to it as part of the sound of winter. But if your furnace starts to make more of a racket, one that has you occasionally looking up and thinking, “What was that?”, then something is probably wrong. These noises can include rattling, clicking, booming, and grinding. If it sounds off, have it looked into.

2. Uneven heating

The furnace is running, hot air is flowing out of the room vents, and it would seem as if everything is okay. Except some rooms are not as warm as they usually are. If you can’t find a reason for this in the rooms themselves (such as cracks around windows or other drafts), then the furnace is probably losing its heating capacity—and it will continue to get worse until the furnace runs itself down.

3. Short-cycling

This is when the furnace gets caught in a start-stop pattern that repeats multiple times over an hour. A furnace should run in heating cycles of at least 15 minutes before cycling down. Short-cycling can indicate several different problems, or possible multiple ones coming together if you have an older furnace. 

4. High heating bills

A furnace, if maintained annually, should keep around 95% of its original energy efficiency up to the last two years of its service life. When you see that you are paying much more to run the furnace than you ever have before, it probably means the furnace is now in those final years. Repairs may only stall this: a technician can help determine if repairs are worthwhile.

5. You can’t seem to get warm enough

Have you found yourself pushing your thermostat settings up higher and higher in order to warm up the house? You shouldn’t need to do this—the same steady temperature you normally set the furnace to should be fine, unless the furnace is starting to fail.  

At Atlantic Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, Inc., “We Take Pride in Your Comfort.” Schedule service for your furnace—repair or replacement—with our team today. 

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How Big a New Water Heater Should I Get?

January 4th, 2021
water-heater-tank

The answer to this might sound simple: why not get the biggest water heater that you can afford and which fits in your house? 

However, when it comes to water heater installation, a water heater that is too large and powerful for a home will turn into a problem because it drains energy. If you have a water heater that heats up more water than your household uses, that’s energy going to waste. You’ll have a water heater you paid too much to purchase and which consumes enormous amounts of power nobody is putting to use. 

The best way to determine the right size of water heater to install is to work with professionals. You’ll need professionals for any service for a water heater in your house, so involve them from the start when you’re getting a new one. Our technicians work with many types and sizes of water heaters in Maryland, and we can see you have the ideal new system for your home.

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The “Stack Effect” and How Your Home Is Heated

December 21st, 2020
airflow-diagram

You may have never heard of the “stack effect” before (no, it has nothing to do with Robert Stack from The Untouchables), but it has a huge effect on your home heating in Maryland. Although you don’t have to be an expert on how your home enjoys warmth during the winter—that’s why you have HVAC professionals like us around—a bit of knowledge can go a long way toward helping you to understand how your house may be losing heat, how to prevent it, and when to call for assistance.

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What You Need to Know About a Leaking Boiler

December 7th, 2020
boiler

Do you think that the boiler you use to heat your home should leak? Your answer to that is almost certainly no. Leaks of any kind in water-carrying systems in a house are bad news. Your boiler isn’t part of the standard plumbing, but part of the heating system. However, it relies on the circulation of water to provide warmth to your house, traveling from the tank through pipes to the various terminal points (radiators, baseboard heaters, in-floor piping). If you notice water leaking from the boiler system (with one exception) there’s something wrong that will require heater repair in Delaware.

Need to know more about what’s going on? We’ll get into that below.

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Why the Burners in Your Furnace Aren’t Lighting

November 23rd, 2020
gas-burners

It’s nice to know that whenever you need warmth in your home during the long winter, you only have to adjust the thermostat and your furnace turns on and starts sending heated air through the ducts to the rooms… 

…except when it doesn’t. A furnace can’t be guaranteed to work without malfunctions through its entire service life, although regular maintenance each fall can keep problems to a minimum. But this winter you may find that the burners in your furnace aren’t lighting when you set the thermostat to demand heat. What’s going on, and do you need to call for furnace repair in Smyrna, DE?

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Is a Tankless Water Heater Right for Your House?

November 9th, 2020
tankless-water-heater

If you’re reading this post, it’s likely because you are considering installing a new water heater for your house. The old water heater is no longer doing the job, or it is costing far too much to keep it up. What’s the next step? Is it as simple as calling and asking us to replace your water heater? Well, yes, it can be that simple. When it comes to water heaters in Lewes, DE, we’re the expert team to look to for a new installation. 

We’ll help you with more than installing a new water heater. We’ll help you choose the model and size. Which brings us to the topic of this post: the tankless water heater. You’re thinking you may want to switch from the standard storage tank model you’ve used for years to the technology of the “on-demand” water heater. Is this the right choice for your home?

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How to Prepare Your AC for Its Winter Break

October 26th, 2020
frozen-ac

During spring, we recommend all of our customers schedule a maintenance inspection and tune-up for their air conditioning system. This prepares the AC to handle the rigors of another summer. 

But you won’t use your air conditioning system during the winter, so there isn’t anything you need to do to prepare it for the season … or so you might think.

Although you don’t have to schedule maintenance a second time for your AC (unless it’s a heat pump), there are a few steps you can take to ensure the air conditioning system is protected and in good shape during this period of inactivity. This will help make life easier when spring comes around. 

Below are steps to take to help your AC through the winter hibernation.

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Should You Invest in Geothermal Comfort This Fall?

October 12th, 2020
geothermal-loop-system

When summer ends, people start to think about their home comfort systems—and not just heater. Yes, fall is the time to schedule heating maintenance to ensure the heater is ready to handle the coming winter temperatures. But fall is also a time to consider making changes to the air conditioning system if it’s coming to the end of its service life.

Last week we offered a recommendation for an HVAC system upgrade that handles your heating and cooling needs: a heat pump installation. This isn’t the only way you can make a double-upgrade for your heating and air conditioning in Delaware, however. This may be the fall that you finally decide to make your dreams of a geothermal heating and cooling system come true.

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Should You Replace an Old AC With a Heat Pump?

September 28th, 2020
trane-condenser-backyard

You’ve come to the end of regular air conditioning maintenance and AC repair in Delaware for your home comfort system. The air conditioner is at the close of its service life and it’s time to schedule a replacement. All ACs eventually get there—the important part is deciding what to replace yours with.

“Well, that’s easy,” you say. “Another central air conditioner!”

Of course, that is one option, and it may be the best option. But it isn’t the only one. You might want to consider a heat pump.

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How Did Your Air Conditioning System Do This Summer?

September 14th, 2020
calendar-scheduling-book

If you remembered to have your annual spring air conditioning tune-up in Maryland, you probably had a problem-free summer of cooling. That’s what these regular maintenance visits are designed to do: prevent repairs from cropping up, stop abrupt breakdowns, and keep the AC from becoming more expensive to operate.

Before your air conditioning system goes off for a few months, it’s a good time to analyze its performance during the previous season and look forward to the future. And the future may be a new air conditioning system installation.

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