During freezing winter days, a furnace is one of the most important things in our homes. A well-maintained furnace delivers the expected heat output without the risk of harmful emissions and energy waste. For that reason, to make sure you stay warm and cozy in your home, you have to make sure your furnace is in good condition. But, what kind of furnace service before winter do you need?
Consider the Following Furnace Service Before Winter
1. Drainage Tube Cleaning
Some furnaces, especially propane and natural gas furnaces, produce water as they heat. However, if the drainage tube is clogged, water could fill the exhaust manifold. This could cause the flame sensor to shut down.
For that reason, keep the drainage tube clean by pouring a cup of white vinegar through it. In addition, you could blow compressed air through it. If you’re uncomfortable with this, ask the professionals at Neal’s Heating & Air to help.
2. Flame Sensor Cleaning
A dirty flame sensor can stop the furnace from working properly or entirely. So, you need to clean this once or twice a year. To do this, hold the sensor at the bottom and clean it with an emery cloth.
3. Furnace Filter Maintenance
Changing the filter of your furnace is important to ensure its high performance and longevity. On top of that, proper maintenance may help you save up to 15 percent on your energy bill.
A dirty filter can cause the following problems:
- Restricted airflow
- Reduced indoor air quality
- Ductwork clogged with debris that decreases the furnace’s lifespan
- Overworked fan motor, which consumes more energy
4. Inspect for Carbon Buildup
Chimneys often accumulate carbon buildup and require professional cleaning. Only a professional furnace inspector can properly inspect your furnace’s carbon buildup.
In addition, you need to regularly test or replace carbon monoxide detectors to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning that may result from improper ventilation.
If you lack professional knowledge, tools, and skills, handling furnace maintenance can be risky for you as well as for your unit. So we advise that you contact a reliable, licensed furnace technician who can handle the job professionally and safely.
Fall is the best time to perform routine HVAC maintenance and fixes. This will give you significant savings and improve your year-round comfort. For that reason, you may regret skipping over any of these essential tasks this fall. Keep reading to learn the most essential HVAC fall tasks.
3 Key HVAC Fall Tasks
1. AC Maintenance
Air conditioning maintenance is at the top of our fall to-do list. It has worked hard all summer season to keep you cool. For that reason, once the season is over, it’s time for cleaning and inspection. Maintaining and winterizing it is as vital as preparing your home for the coldest months of the year.
Your repair specialist will clean the entire system. In addition, they’ll replace any damaged parts so it will function correctly ‘til next summer.
Remember, cleaning is essential, especially if you reside in a dusty area or have pets inside. In case you need air conditioning repairs, call Neal’s Heating & Air.
2. Inspect Ducts & Vents
Another important fall task is to inspect your vents and duct for dust, mold, leaks, and debris. Leaky and moldy ducts can contaminate the indoor air and pose a serious health hazard. If they are dirty, you will be contaminating your home throughout the winter season.
The fall season is the best time of year to get your home’s air ducts well cleaned. Cleaning may even give you improved indoor air quality, enhanced energy efficiency, and savings.
3. Check Filters, Pulleys, & Belts
After a long summer season, wear and tear can result in dirty air filters, belts, and pulleys. Failing to maintain them all winter can be very dangerous to you.
Dirty filters can allow contaminants to enter your HVAC system. Worn out pulleys and belts can also crack on restarting your system again. Thus, it’s best to replace frayed pulleys and belts.
Clean air filters, belts, and pulleys don’t just improve indoor air quality and boost efficiency and performance. They also lower repair costs and extend lifespan. Set a calendar reminder to inspect and change your air filter every month.
Schedule HVAC Inspection & Maintenance at Neal’s Heating & Air Today
It’s vital to make sure all your heating equipment is in tip-top shape before winter comes. Schedule annual or biannual consultation with an experienced HVAC professional. Neal’s Heating & Air HVAC contractors can install, repair, and replace complete systems for your home. Doing these HVAC fall tasks can give you significant energy savings.
We can also perform regular inspections of HVAC systems to catch heating issues before they become serious. Choosing this family-run company for your HVAC maintenance can help you keep your system functioning at its optimal levels.
Fall is the best time to get your HVAC system all geared up for the upcoming cold days. With that in mind, you need to know a few pre-fall maintenance tips for your HVAC system. Keeping a well-maintained HVAC system can improve its efficiency. For that reason, maintenance will also lower your utility bills, reduce chances of expensive breakdowns, and prolong the system’s life.
Keep reading to discover these …
4 Pre-Fall Maintenance Tips for your HVAC System
1. Clean or Replace Filters if Required
Regular inspection and cleaning of air filters improves airflow and increases your HVAC system’s efficiency. However, clogged filters reduce air quality and can cause blockage in the system. In order to avoid overspending on energy bills and repair work during season time, replace the air filter with a clean one monthly.
2. Inspect Ducts and Outdoor Units
Ducts require regular maintenance to ensure the quality of air and heat levels. Finding and mending worn-out insulation, leaks and other damage can increase the system’s energy efficiency. Also, outdoor units are more prone to damage and collect more debris. Therefore, it is essential to clean the unit thoroughly to sweep out debris from inside the vents and fans. In addition, you can check for any damage.
3. Get the System Warmed Up and Check for Leaks
Don’t wait for the cold to settle in! Start pre-heating your system beforehand at a low setting. This will speed up its heating process when you actually need it during winters. Also, inspect the heat pump thoroughly for unusual smells or noises as they may indicate an issue. In addition, feel for air leaks around doors and windows. By sealing any potential crevices with weather-stripping, you’ll make the home easier to keep warm with the onset of cold weather.
4. Schedule a Routine Maintenance Check
It would be best to get your HVAC system professionally checked twice a year to ensure its safe and efficient functioning. For that reason, pre-fall is the ideal time of the year. A routine inspection can help identify and eradicate any potential safety hazards which may hinder its operation. In this way, you may prevent unexpected (and costly) breakdowns. Also, maintenance helps to extend your system’s life and improves air quality and efficiency.
The pre-fall season is the perfect time to consider replacing and maintaining old HVAC systems. Following the above steps can make your transition from the hot summer to the winter season seamless. Additionally, it’ll help you avoid any costly breakdowns. Call Neal’s Heating & Air Conditioning for any questions at (706) 764-7185.
Sometimes, HVAC problems offer a simple fix. However, there are some problems that demand more attention by a professional. And if you don’t fix them right away, they can develop into major, costly problems. In addition, it makes more sense to take care of them right away since most of the time, a routine maintenance call can address the developing issue. Let’s take a look at the 5 most common HVAC system problems. We’ll also offer likely solutions to each of them or discuss possible causes. So, with that said, let’s dive in!
Top 5 Most Common HVAC System Problems to Avoid
1) Missing Maintenance
Maintenance needs to be on a regular schedule to be effective. Not only that, but a licensed HVAC technician is the best person for the task. They have the experience and expertise to spot problems before they develop further. Your heating and air system is just like any other machine. Why wouldn’t you have it serviced twice a year? Do that one simple thing and you’ll save hassle, save discomfort, and save money in the long run.
Protect your expensive investment – call Neal’s Heating and Air (706) 764-7185 today.
2) Full Filters
When was the last time you replaced your system filter? We ask, because it’s important. In fact, Replacing your filter regularly (and on time!) is vital to the long-term performance of your HVAC system. A dirty filter chokes off the airflow, creating hard work and diminishing your comfort. In addition, frequently running the heating and air through dirty filters shortens the system’s lifespan. Of the most common HVAC system problems, this one is the easiest to address with a simple monthly task.
3) Ignition Issues
Whether you have a pilot light or electronic ignitor, your HVAC unit may suffer ignition problems at some point. These issues could result from various causes. For example:
- The pilot, flame sensor, and burners themselves may get filthy, causing them to malfunction. You could end up with an outage, short cycling, or delayed ignition.
- If gas isn’t being delivered to the ignition effectively, it’ll cause problems.
- Wear and tear. Everything wears out eventually. At times, you may need to replace individual components of the ignition, like the ignitor or thermocouple.
No matter what the ignition problem is, this is one of the most common HVAC system problems. And, you should treat it seriously by having a qualified, licensed professional look at it. Don’t mess with the ignition on your own – gas and electricity are volatile.
4) Thermostat Trouble
Simple: if the thermostat breaks or loses power, the machine will stop responding to your home’s temperature. A good solution would be to install a hard-wired programmable thermostat.
5) Worrisome Wear
Machines wear out, and so do their individual parts. Belts, bearings, motors, electrical components … they may all require replacement eventually. At the first sign of a problem, have your licensed HVAC pro take a look.
To avoid any of the most common HVAC system problems, call the experts at Neal’s Heating & Air today. Stay comfortable – by getting the jump on issues. And click here to learn more about our Comfort Club for regular service.
Now that hot summer days are just around the corner, this is the best time to prepare your HVAC system. You need to ensure that it can provide comfort at the time you need it the most. Summer’s coming – how heat affects your HVAC System can also affect you. Read on to discover exactly …
How Heat Affects Your HVAC System
In our region, heat leads directly to an increase in humidity.
The extremely hot and humid conditions means your HVAC system will need to work harder than normal to keep your home cool and comfortable. Normally, your air conditioner will be able to handle the humidity on its own. But when the temperature gets high, the humidity will also reach high levels that your system may not be able to handle.
If your home feels moist or smells damp, or if you see condensation on the windows, you will need to keep the humidity level at 60% to reduce the strain on your unit. Consider installing a stand-alone dehumidifier to keep the humidity at reasonable levels.
Other steps you can take include:
1. Install a Ceiling Fan
You may be tempted to dial up the thermostat during a severe heat wave. Unfortunately, this is not an energy-efficient way to cool the home. A high temperature setting can overwhelm the system and can cause your energy bills to skyrocket.
Just set a baseline temperature you’re comfortable with, and turn on a ceiling fan. The ceiling fan helps to circulate the air and produces a “windchill effect” that makes you feel cooler, reducing your reliance on the air conditioner.
2. Prevent Overheating
The extreme heat will also take its toll on the condenser component of your HVAC system. Keep it clean by hosing down the unit with water and removing any form of obstructions such as leaves, branches, dust, and debris.
3. Schedule Regular Maintenance
Your system will need to perform harder during the summer, which can result in overloading and malfunctioning.
Remember that your air conditioner is just like a car. It will perform well, but only if you take care of it. Make sure to change your filters and schedule a maintenance checkup with Neal’s Heating & Air before the start of the cooling and heating seasons.
Give us a call today at (706) 764-7185. We will be glad to check out your HVAC right away!
Really warm weather is just around the corner! It’s time to make sure your air conditioner is up to speed so it can perform once the new season’s heat gets too much. Here are some of the things you can do to. Read on to discover how to get your HVAC system ready for summer.
How to Get Your HVAC System Ready for Summer
1. Start by Changing the Filters
Maintenance is the key to an HVAC system’s performance. Spring brings with it more pollen and dust than normal. For that reason, you need to change your filters constantly, especially if the system is used frequently.
Aside from air conditioner filters, you need to clean your air supply vents and registers. This can help improve air flow and also boost your home’s indoor air quality.
2. Check the Thermostat
At the start of the cooling or heating season, your thermostat should be working properly. However, if it’s not, you may need to have it recalibrated.
If you’re using an older thermostat, consider an upgrade to a programmable one. A programmable thermostat adjusts the indoor temperature to align with your schedule. In addition, it heats or cools a space only when it’s needed.
3. Consider Using Window Treatments
The sun streaming through your windows contributes to the heat buildup. This can cause your HVAC system to work even harder. However, you can find an easy solution! Simply hang curtains, drapes, or blinds to curtail the heat coming in from the windows.
4. Reduce the Use of Appliances
Some of your home appliances generate heat while in use. For that reason, you may want to find alternative methods. For example, instead of cooking inside, you can take advantage of the warm weather and do some outdoor grilling. Also, instead of doing the laundry all at once, you can run smaller loads. Additionally, you can hang your clothes out to dry outside.
5. Schedule a Service Appointment
Remember that prevention is always better than a cure. Just like a car, your HVAC system needs a tune-up periodically. Call Neal’s Heating & Air so we can take a look at your HVAC system.
We’ll clean it up and check for problems before they balloon into something else. Just call us at (706) 764-7185 to get a free quote and to book an appointment.
A common question homeowners ask is, “What are the signs my HVAC needs to be repaired?” And it’s a good question! Now that spring is in full force and summer is not far behind, you might want to have a look at your HVAC system. It’s time to see if it’s working on top of its game.
Otherwise, you might find yourself struggling to survive the oppressive heat. And all because your air conditioner chose to conk out … right in the middle of summer. Here are the signs to watch out for:
What Are the Signs My HVAC Needs to Be Repaired?
1. Frequent Cycling
It is quite normal for your system to go through cycles. However, if your HVAC frequently cycles on and off, this could be due to a number of problems. Maybe an oversized system, frozen evaporator coils, low refrigerant, or wiring issues. In addition, it could be a combination of those issues.
2. Warm Air
Do you get warm instead of cold air coming out of your air conditioner’s vents? This could be a sign that the compressor is not functioning and needs to be repaired.
For that reason, you may want to clean or replace your filters first. However, if that doesn’t do the trick, you’ll need to call an HVAC company to have it repaired.
3. Weird Sounds
Most air conditioners put out low-level noise while being turned on and off. If your HVAC system isn’t quiet in its operation, something could be wrong inside the unit.
Watch out for banging noises and rattling sounds – this could be a sign that something is loose inside the unit that needs to be tightened.
4. Bad Smell
If you encounter a bad smell near your system, this may indicate mold presence and lack of maintenance. To prevent this from happening, you need to have the unit professionally maintained before starting the heating and cooling system again.
5. High Energy Bills
If you’ve been getting higher-than-average utility bills, this could be due to a leakage in the duct work, a broken thermostat switch, or an aging system that needs to be upgraded to a more energy-efficient unit.
Don’t let these small issues balloon into a major concern that will lead to a costly replacement. Nip these problems in the bud and hire Neal’s Heating & Air to assess your current system and troubleshoot problems. Just call Neal’s at (706) 764-7185 to book an appointment.
Now that spring is here, it is time to dust off the grime, start your heavy-duty cleanup, and prepare for summer. Don’t forget to include your HVAC system in the things you have to clean up this season. Here are some spring cleaning tips for your HVAC system. Read on to learn what you need to do to prepare your air conditioner or heat pump for the cooling season.
Spring Cleaning Tips for Your HVAC System
1. Clean the Filter
During the cold winter months, your system worked extremely hard. It tried to contain airborne contaminants such as dust, hair, and pet dander. However, all that trapped dirt inside the filter can prevent the system from doing its job efficiently.
For that reason, experts highly recommend that you change your filter after a couple of months. You change it in order to improve your system’s performance – and your air quality. To make sure, check with your manufacturer to determine the correct frequency of changing filters.
2. Make a Service Appointment
Have a professional clean and service your system. You’ll want your equipment running at its peak before heading into summer.
In addition, you’ll intensively use your unit during the summer. And if it malfunctions during one of the hottest days, it could be inconvenient for the entire family. Not only that, but it could be harder to schedule an appointment. By scheduling a spring HVAC appointment, you’ll beat the summer rush.
Taking this step allows you to spot problems early on and mitigate them, as well as prolong the lifespan of your system.
Join Neal’s Comfort Club to protect your HVAC system’s warranty and ensure that your unit is running smoothly all throughout the year.
3. Remove Leaves from Outdoor Unit
Check your outdoor unit to see if any leaves or branches are encroaching on your unit’s space and remove them. Cut back any plants or shrubs growing nearby. Then, using a low-pressure hose, clean off the dirt that has accumulated outside the unit. Or, simply call Neal’s Heating & Air. We’ll clean your system thoroughly for you, inside and out.
If you need help with your unit, please call Neal’s Heating & Air at (706) 764-7185 to schedule an appointment. By having your system maintained in springtime, you can rest easy – knowing you can depend on it to perform when you need it most in summer.
Some of the best ways to fight the flu are not so obvious. Not many people know that they can use their heating system to stave off the illness that has affected so many people over the past year. But did you know you can actually fight the flu with your heating system? Here are some of the things you can do to protect your loved ones during this flu season.
5 Ways to Fight the Flu With Your Heating System
1. Replace Your Filter
Indoor allergens like pet dander, dust mites, and pollen get trapped in your heating system’s filter. But if you haven’t changed your filter for months, it won’t be able to stop these allergens from coming through.
Prevent them from entering your system by regularly changing your filters. By minimizing the presence of allergens in the home, your indoor air quality will also improve.
2. Use a Humidifier
Since it is cold and dry during the winter season, you need to increase the moisture level inside the home. Professionals recommend that you keep the home within the 35-50% humidity level to reduce the incidence of flu and cold viruses in the home.
Since the flu virus does not thrive in warm and moist environments, you need to invest in a good humidifier. A humidifier will also help you breathe easier and will help treat flu symptoms like sore throat and runny nose.
3. Invest in an Air Purifier
This device provides clean, fresh air throughout the home, which is highly effective in fighting back seasonal illnesses such as influenza.
4. Clean the Air Ducts
The air ducts circulate the air from your heating system to the rooms in your home. Over time, they can attract a lot of dust, dirt, and debris. You can ask your local HVAC company to clean the air ducts to reduce these irritants.
5. Check Your System
A heating system that has been largely neglected can become a breeding ground for mold and allergens. The quality of the air you breathe in is also important when combating airborne illnesses.
You need to hire the services of a good HVAC company to check both your system and your home’s indoor air quality. Regular inspections of your heating system is important, and more so during the flu season.
Whenever temperatures start dropping, most homeowners concern themselves with how to keep their loved ones warm and toasty during winter. In order to lessen your energy consumption and save on utility bills, the US Department of Energy highly recommends that you set your thermostat during winter at a temperature of 68°F.
You can even set it even lower if nobody’s home during daytime, or if you’re asleep at night. Once you get used to the colder weather, you can also lower the temperature by one degree each week.
Set Your Thermostat During Winter the Modern Way
Manually changing the settings of your thermostat can be more work than it’s worth. If you no longer want to go through the trouble, you might want to invest in a programmable thermostat. To get the most out of your energy-efficient HVAC equipment, you need to pair it with a programmable thermostat.
Most programmable thermostats can easily learn the habits of your household and will automatically adjust the temperature of your home. They can also override these automatic settings should the need arise.
Placement of the thermostat is also important. To achieve optimal performance, avoid placing it on the path of direct sunlight or air drafts. Make sure to place it in an area far away from any heating or cooling registers, appliances, doors, windows, skylights, and fireplaces.
Most importantly, don’t forget to schedule a service maintenance before the start of the heating season. You need to ensure your unit can withstand the demands of the household during winter.
Start Saving on Energy Today
Employing the strategies mentioned above will help you keep comfortable during the long cold months ahead. If you want professional help in setting up your thermostat, you can consult with an HVAC professional from Neal’s Heating & Air. Please give us a call at (706) 764-7185 for a detailed energy assessment of your home.