Atlantic Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, Inc Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Heating System Repair’

Can’t Get Warm Enough? Don’t Keep Raising The Thermostat!

Monday, March 15th, 2021
thermostat

The thermostat for a house seems like a simple enough device. When you want the house to be warmer, you raise it. When you want it cooler, you lower it. And, in many ways, the thermostat is that basic: even with the complex “smart” thermostats available today, a thermostat still operates as a switch that turns the heater, AC, and air handler on and off as needed.

But people often mistake the thermostat as a tool to overcome a deficiency in their HVAC system. For example: let’s say you’re finding it hard to keep your house warm during the winter, so you keep pushing up the thermostat higher until you get the comfort you want. 

This isn’t how either the thermostat or the heater should work. Both are designed so you can set the thermostat to a single, steady temperature and receive the comfort you desire. If you need to push the thermostat higher than normal, it means you have a problem with your heating in Dover, DE.

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What Is an Air Handler and Is It Important for My Furnace?

Monday, March 1st, 2021
hands-opening-cabinet

It’s easy for people like us who work in HVAC and are immersed in it every day to forget that most homeowners aren’t familiar with the terms of heating and air conditioning systems in the same way we are. 

One example is the air handler. It can trigger confusion for people who hear “air,” then immediately guess the air handler means the air conditioning system. An air handler is important for an AC, but it does more. We often have to make repairs to air handlers to help with customers’ heating in Delaware. If you have a central furnace heating your house, whether electric or natural gas-powered, an air handler may be a part of how the furnace works.

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There’s Smoke Coming From My Heat Pump! What’s Wrong?

Monday, February 1st, 2021
steam-rising-from-ground

Yes, this sounds alarming. You don’t want to see smoke coming off of any mechanical appliance for your home (well, except for a barbecue). It usually indicates a fire has started in the machine, and that’s a serious emergency.

So if you looked out the window on a cold day while your heat pump was running and saw big clouds of smoke billowing off it, we wouldn’t blame you for getting panicked and wondering who you need to call to get something done about it. You may be even thinking about calling the fire department.

Well, we’re glad we caught you in time. Although we can’t 100% guarantee that your heat pump hasn’t caught fire and is belching out smoke, we think we can say with about 99% certainty that what’s happening is normal and not harmful.

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5 Signs Your Furnace Is Dying

Monday, 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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The “Stack Effect” and How Your Home Is Heated

Monday, 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

Monday, 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

Monday, 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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How Worried Should Those Furnace Noises Make You?

Monday, March 30th, 2020
technician-giving-furnace-maintenance-tune-up

When your furnace is running during cold weather, you have a good idea of what kind of noises it makes. A modern furnace won’t make a racket, but it does create a blanket white noise of air moving through the vents. When you’re near to the HVAC cabinet, you’ll be able to hear the burners running and the noise of the blower fan and its motor.

But if your furnace is making unusual sounds, ones you aren’t accustomed to hearing, you may feel worried something is wrong. Is it an emergency that needs 24/7 services from a Smyrna, DE, HVAC contractor? Or is it maybe nothing and you’re overreacting?

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Can My Gas Furnace Become Dangerous?

Monday, January 6th, 2020
heat-exchange-cracked

More than 66 million homes across the country use natural gas in some way. It’s the preferred power source for kitchens and the most reliable way to provide warmth while also saving money. Yet people still have concerns about the safety of using natural gas. It’s easy to become worried when you hear about accidents with natural gas resulting in fires, explosions, or carbon monoxide poisoning.

It’s true that natural gas can become hazardous, and the gas furnace in your home does have the potential to create safety issues. However, natural gas would not be used in 66 million homes (and five million businesses) if it was a regular safety problem. Gas furnaces are constructed to operate as safely as possible. As long as you have the furnace serviced regularly—annual professional maintenance tune-ups and prompt repairs as necessary—you and your family can enjoy years of worry-free heating.

However, we recommend you read below to find out how the furnace might turn dangerous. Arming yourself with this knowledge can help you know when to call us for professional furnace service in Georgetown, DE.

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