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February 2020

Should I Have My Air Ducts Cleaned?

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How Often Should I Clean My Air Ducts? Over time, air ducts can be come packed full of dirt and dust that affects both you and your HVAC system. Dirty Air Ducts = Dirty Air It goes without saying that if your air ducts are dirty, the air the passes through them will also become dirty. Overtime, dust, skin cells and other particulates from both people and outdoors make their way into your HVAC system. Left untouched over time, your air ducts and air returns can become a breeding ground for some pretty nasty stuff and cause both sickness and allergy flare ups. However, just how dirty should they be before you have your air ducts cleaned?  Visual Inspection A good way to get an idea of what may be hiding in your duct work is to look at the return vents in your home. Carefully remove the register and take a look inside. Can you see or feel a good amount of dirt or dust build up? If so, don't be alarmed. Air ducts are bound to get dirty over time and will require cleaning. It's important to note that everyone's home is different. If you have many pets, your air ducts will become dirty faster due to hair and dander build up.  Time For A Cleaning! Signs it may be time for an air duct cleaning include: Visual signs of mold or dirt build up in return vents or other components of your HVAC system. You notice foul...
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When Should I Change My Furnace Filter?

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How Often Should I Change My Furnace Filter? Both your furnace and air conditioner depend on a clean furnace filter to operate at maximum efficiency. Dirt and dust are the #1 cause of HVAC breakdowns. Who knew you could save your self so much money in the long-run by just changing an air filter! Failure to change your furnace filter on a regular basis could lead to such HVAC problems as ice build up on your air conditioner. Check Those Filters! It is recommenced to always check your furnace filter at least once per month, regardless of the size of the filter. Even if you have a large, media filter, debris can sometimes become caught inside of it and hinder air flow, making your furnace or air conditioner work harder than it needs to. We have even found pet toys inside filters before! Standard One-Inch Filter Furnace filters vary on when they should be changed. If you are utilizing a standard one-inch filter, these are recommended to be changed once per month. One-inch filters may need to be changed more frequently if you have pets or your home is dustier than usual. A dirty filter can also cause your furnace to short cycle during the heating season. Media Filters If you have a thick media-filter installed, these should generally be changed every 6 months. These filters don't need to be changed as often due to the size of them and the dirt they can hold. However, it is still recommended...
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How Does a Furnace Gas Valve Work?

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How Does My Furnace's Gas Valve Work? The gas valve on your furnace is one of the most important parts! Without it, your house would be quite cold! The gas valve on your furnace is one of the most important parts. It is ultimately responsible for delivering an adjusting the flow of gas pressure to your furnace to keep it lit when running. A gas valve replacement is a common furnace repair in older furnaces. Let's take a look at the different kinds and how they work to keep your home warm in the winter! Types of Gas Valves Combination gas valve: This type of gas valve was introduced around the 1960s. A combination gas valve contains a handle, a thermocouple, a regulator, and a solenoid valve. In essence, it contains everything needed for the operation of a gas fired furnace.  Gas chain: These types of gas valves are quite common and require the operator to manually turn a valve to open or close the flow of gas to the furnace. Once opened by the user, the solenoid valve will only open to allow gas to flow when the furnace actually calls for heat. Otherwise, you'd have a non-stop flow of gas into your home! A safety switch will only remain open if the thermocouple is heated to a minimum temperature, verifying the furnace is actually in heating mode. How The Gas Valve Works The furnace's gas valve is operated by electromagnets. There are two different valve's that work in...
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Do Heat Pumps Save Money?

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Will a Heat Pump Save Me Money? Heat pumps are a great option for someone looking for a unit to both heat and cool their home! What Is a Heat Pump Anyway? A heat pump is a pretty cool piece of equipment. It is capable of both cooling your home in the summer and heating your home in the winter. It looks pretty much identical to an air conditioner but utilizes an air handler to move air throughout your home. A heat pump is a type of forced air HVAC system.  Some customers have a gas furnace as well that they use for "emergency heat" in the winter as heat pumps are designed to heat a home as long as the temp is above 30 degrees outside. Heat pumps work by moving warm air from one place to another. In the summer it moves the warm air out of your home, and in the winter it moves warm air into your home. Even when it is cold outside, heat energy is still present! By moving heat instead of generating heat, it can be a cost effective alternative to heating.  Can a Heat Pump Save Me Money? This really depends. Although you can certainly save money on fuel consumption in the winter, a heat pump will use a bit more electricity than a standard furnace and air conditioner as it is both cooling and heating your home. Also, heat pumps are generally more expensive to install than a normal air conditioner as...
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