Tag Archives: Edgewood

Are Furnace Inspections Really Necessary?

cincinnati northern kentucky hvac tune up before winter

If you find yourself asking this question, the answer is a big YES, you do need regular maintenance by a certified HVAC expert!

The benefits of getting regular maintenance include that you will extend the life of your system, you will save energy, you will keep your family as safe as possible and can you can reduce other health related-risks.

Recall that part of what a furnace inspection does is make sure you have no carbon monoxide leaks. Because carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, it’s hard for homeowners to know or detect that these may exist in the home. These leaks lead to symptoms like nausea, dizziness, and headaches, but they can also lead to death.

Approximately 500 people die each year, and 15,000 people are taken to emergency rooms due to carbon monoxide exposure—even though this could have bee preventable in most cases. (Source.)

Also, many HVAC systems also require regular maintenance in order for the warranty to be valid. Despite how manufacturer’s insist that maintenance is necessary for our HVAC system, as much as 3 out of 4 service calls in the fall and winter months because of no heat were related to a lack of system maintenance, according to Angie’s List. That means that as much as 75 percent of those no-heat calls potentially could have been avoided with regular maintenance by qualified professionals.

HVAC Maintenance Program by Greater Comfort

Not only are you keeping your family safe and saving money when we make sure your system is running as efficiently as possible, we will check and record the following:

  • Check evaporator fan motor amp draws
  • Verify proper manifold gas pressure
  • Check induced draft motor amp draw
  • Verify all safety’s
  • Clean flame rod (if applicable)
  • Check heat exchanger
  • Inspect flue and fresh air make–up
  • Inspect contractors
  • Electric resistance heating elements
  • Disconnects & wiring
  • Tightening all electrical connections
  • Verify proper thermostat operation & program

So Do I Really Need To Call my HVAC?

Again, if you want to make a small investment for the life of your HVAC system and to help ensure you don’t have an emergency situation when the cold temperatures hit, the right thing to do is to set up your maintenance with a qualified and trusted HVAC expert.

When you go to call your HVAC to get your tune-up, be sure that what you are getting is a comprehensive maintenance program. In other words, do a bit of research before you buy or agree to a contract/service visit. What you don’t want is to only receive service for one or a few items on the list you see above. Also be sure that you are contacting a qualified, trained technician.

In the end, it really isn’t just about safety—although that should be a compelling reason, too—but it is about preventative maintenance.

Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati and Southeastern Indiana Residents Turn to Greater Comfort

If you are looking for a reliable and trustworthy Heating & Air Conditioning Company, check out our exceptional reviews here, and give Greater Comfort a call today.

Source/Reference

  • http://www.angieslist.com/articles/how-often-should-you-have-furnace-inspection.htm
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The Ultimate Fall Maintenance Checklist

HVAC maintenance northern kentucky

Maintaining your heating and cooling system will help you combat unwanted costs and avoidable system failures. Of course calling for your fall tune-up is a vital step, where we come and check the gas or oil connections, your gas pressure, burner combustion and heat exchanger, and much more, to make sure you stay comfortable year-round.

Change Your Filters

When your furnace is forced to “work harder” to pull the air through, the more it will cost you, so be sure to replace your furnace filters on a monthly basis (or as your qualified HVAC professional tells you to do, depending on the climate where you live and your system).

Check the Fireplace

Have a professional check your chimney, clean when needed, and make sure the fireplace is working as it should.

Take a Look at Your Furnace!

Make sure nothing is near the furnace that shouldn’t be, such as something that could be flammable. Give the furnace a dust if it looks like it needs one!

Ask us About Sealing & Insulating

With winter around the corner, ask us about our recommendatinos for how you can insulate and seal air leaks. Whether those air leaks be in the attic, basement, a crawlspace, or around your windows and doors, you will notice the difference with these spaces taken care of.

Check That Your Carbon Monoxide Detector is Working

When you go to change out your air filter, just add one more thing to your list—checking the CO Detector. Yes, your furnace inspection is important to make sure your heat exchanger is not leaking, and a CO Detector is not meant to replace a tune-up, but this is a safety precaution to consider.

Regular System Checkups

You knew this had to be on the list! Regular maintenance is what you must do to make sure your furnace will run optimally, and when you need it most. This will save you money due to reduced energy requirements, keep you comfortable, and keep your intake pipe clear.

Look Outside the Home

Depending in your system, you may need to look at the exhaust and intake pipes that are on the exterior part of your home. Ask us for more information, but you want to make sure the  area around these pipes are clean from debris.

When You Have a Programmable Thermostat…Use it!

Being able to control your energy means you can better control your bill each month, as well as have a better sense of the demands you are putting on your system over time. Ask us if you have more questions about how to find comfort using a programmable thermostat. During your tune-up, we will ensure your thermostat is working as it should.

Consider Your Shades

Do you close your curtains or shades during the night? Give it a try and then you can open them back up during the day.

Need more reasons to take care of your home this Fall as you prepare for winter?  Here’s just a few reasons:

  • You can work to reduce allergy-causing pollutants
  • Ensure you don’t have carbon monoxide or gas leaks
  • Ensure you don’t have any disconnected or leaky fuel lines or connections
  • Ensuring your air flow is what it should be

Do your best to prevent any surprises. Call Greater Comfort to schedule a visit at your convenience 859-491-4915.

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Is a Hybrid Heating System Right for Me? A Union, KY Heating Question

As homeowners grow more aware of both their environmental impact and the rising costs of energy it is becoming more and more common to look for higher efficiency home comfort system options. One such option is a hybrid heating systems. Many leading manufacturers now offer hybrid heating systems for installation in your Union, KY home, and the energy savings they represent are alluring for many local homeowners. If you are interested in the installation of a hybrid heating system in your home, contact Greater Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning today. We have the training, skills and experience necessary to ensure that your hybrid heating system in properly installed and maintained.

A hybrid heating system incorporates both a heat pump and a gas furnace into your home comfort system. This allows for very cost effective temperature regulation without sacrificing comfort levels. Because there are two possible heat sources, the gas furnace and electric heat pump, your system can choose which is necessary and make the switch back and forth between the two as needed. Heat pumps are a far more efficient home heating option, but they also do not perform as effectively as gas furnaces do in extreme weather. When it gets too cold out for the heat pump to function effectively the system switches over to the reliability of the gas furnace.

Because the operation of a heat pump is also reversible you can use it to efficiently cool your home during the warmer months of the year. This makes a dual fuel hybrid system not only very efficient but also practical for year round use. If you are interested in heating your home more efficiently while being able to use the same components to cool your home in the summer, a hybrid system may be right for you.

Be sure to discuss your hybrid heating system options with a trained professional from Greater Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning. No heating system is right for every home or individual. We can help you decide if this is the best comfort option for your Union, KY home.

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Newport, KY Heating FAQ: How Do Boilers Distribute Heat?

One of the frequently asked boiler questions we get from our Newport, KY area customers is about the different ways these heating systems distribute heat. Greater Comfort has put together a basic boiler operation list to demonstrate how hot water boilers distribute heat.

The most common type of boiler is a hot water boiler. With a hot water boiler, water is heated and then distributed throughout your home via pipes. You can have either traditional radiators or baseboard radiators which release the heat into your rooms. A pump is used to circulate the hot water through the pipes. The water in the boiler itself can be heated by oil or gas. Since this is not a forced air system, there are no need for air ducts. Boilers are a very effective way to heat your home.

Today, you can buy a high efficiency boiler for your home that can heat it more efficiently than ever before. Older boilers have AFUE ratings of only 55-65 percent, versus the Energy Star rated boilers you can buy today with AFUE ratings of at least 85 percent. That means that much more of the heat produced by your boiler is used to heat your home, which can save you a lot of money on your utility bills. High efficiency boilers also usually have controls that can help reduce the amount of heat lost in your pipes. Some can also serve as an indirect water heater.

Call the Newport, KY boiler experts at Greater Comfort if you have further questions about installing a boiler system in your home.

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Make-up Air Systems: A Newport KY Contractor’s Guide

Have you ever walked up to a building and tried to open the door but found resistance as you pulled it open? This is because of negative pressure, meaning that the pressure outside the building is greater that the air pressure inside. This causes the outside air to press in on building creating a suction effect. Other evidence of negative pressure is drafts around doors and windows.

Causes of Negative Air Pressure

This is normally caused by improper ventilation. The building’s HVAC system exhausts too much air from the interior creating a vacuum on the inside.

The Make-Up Air System

The purpose of the make-up air system, as its name implies, is to allow the building to make up the air that it has exhausted. This equalizes the pressure inside the building to match the outside. As air travels out of the building, the make-up air system allows an equal amount of air into the building.

How the Make-Up Air System Works

Make-up air systems are fairly simple. They consist of an air intake entrance for fresh air; a series of filters to remove dust and contaminants; an actuator that controls the amount of air allowed in; and then a conditioning unit that heats or cools the air. They can also sometimes contain a humidity control system as well. The fresh, incoming air can be ducted to any place in the building that needs it.

Benefits of a Make-Up Air System

  • Increased comfort – By equalizing the pressure inside the building, there are less drafts of air being pulled in by the negative air pressure. This increases the control over inside temperature and the relative comfort of the people inside.
  • Improves air quality – By properly filtering incoming air, the supply of air is more pure. Instead of letting in dirty, contaminated air through doors and windows, the fresh is filtered and ducted directly to the building’s areas.
  • Increased efficiency – With negative air pressure pulling air into the building, the HVAC system has to work harder to exhaust that air. With a make-up air system, efficiency can be increased by up to 35%. Taking to load off the HVAC can be a great benefit.

If your building in Newport is experiencing the effects of negative air pressure, contact the experts at Greater Comfort. We have been working with business owners in the Newport KY area for many years. We would love to talk with you about how we can improve the efficiency and comfort of your building. Give us a call today!

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Benefits of Preventive Maintenance in Newport, KY

We all know how important regular maintenance and tune-ups are for our vehicles. But few people realize that the same is true for your heating and air conditioning systems. You rely on your heater and your air conditioner —especially during the middle of the summer and the winter. We put together a short list of some of the benefits to regular heating and air conditioning maintenance in your Newport, KY home.

Decreased Repair Costs

There’s an old saying that goes “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When you have a professional Newport heating technician regularly inspect your system, they can detect small problems before they turn into major repairs.

Extended Equipment Life

While it might seem illogical to spend money on your system when it’s working fine, we all know that eventually our equipment is going to break down. But with regular maintenance, that time can be delayed for as long as possible. By fixing small issues before they become major issues you can keep your system in working order longer.

Increased Efficiency

As your heating and air conditioning system ages, it has to work harder to heat and cool your home. Belts start to wear down, bearings start to wear down and your equipment will generally deteriorate over time. With regular maintenance and care, your system can continue to run efficiently. An efficient system uses less fuel and is less expensive to run than a worn-down, inefficient system.

If you have questions about the heating or air conditioning system in your Newport, KY home, call the experts at Greater Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning. We offer maintenance plans to suit your budget and make sure your system keeps running at peak performance.

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Newport KY Heating Guide: Supplementing Your Heat Pump

A heat pump is a great way to heat and cool your Newport KY home efficiently. Because they transfer heat rather than consuming fuel to create energy they greatly reduce the amount of energy you use in the process and can help lower utility costs. However, heat pumps can have trouble maintaining comfortable temperatures in harsh climates. Here is some helpful information about supplementing your heat pump to ensure your year round comfort from Greater Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning.

On very cold days, your heat pump may not be able to provide adequate heating power to keep your home warm. A supplemental heating system, such as a furnace, can help make up the difference. Forced air systems can even share your heat pump’s existing ductwork, so installation is not necessarily a big project.

Large homes present another challenge to your heat pump. While proper sizing of a heat pump should generally allow it to heat and cool your home effectively some residences may have enough space that a single heat pump simply cannot reach the capacity necessary to maintain comfort. Upgrading to a larger heat pump may solve the problem, but supplementing it with an additional heater or air conditioner backup may be more cost effective.

Heat pumps run on electricity, and though they don’t use very much of it when heating and cooling your home they still require it for operation. When the power goes out this reliance on electricity can become a problem. It doesn’t have to, though. A supplemental heating and cooling system with an alternate power source can guarantee you comfort in the event that the electricity goes out. A backup generator, properly sized, can also keep your heat pump working in the time that the power is down.

There are many options to consider when choosing a system to supplement your Newport KY heat pump. If energy efficiency and eco-friendly power is a priority for you you may want to consider the installation of a solar energy system in your home and a home comfort system that utilizes that power. Traditional forced air systems are a popular option and can use existing ductwork when supplementing your heat pump. You won’t need to have a whole system installed and the sustainable energy source is a good choice for the environment. If you want more information about supplementing your heat pump for consistent comfort call the heating and air conditioning experts at Greater Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning. We can answer any questions you may have.

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Newport, KY Heating Guide: Why Your Furnace is Short Cycling

It is important that your Newport KY home’s furnace be operating at optimal performance and efficiency levels when the cold weather arrives. Be sure to have your furnace professionally inspected, maintained and, if necessary, repaired before the winter weather arrives. Remember, just because your furnace is coming on does not mean that is working properly. One problem you may notice is what is called “short cycling.”

Short cycling describes the problem of a furnace that frequently turns on and then off repeatedly. This may not sound very serious, but short cycling can be indicative of a larger problem and can cause unnecessary wear and tear to your home heating system. Luckily short cycling is fairly easy to recognize, and it can be caused by a number of factors and conditions that do not require serious repair work.

If you notice your furnace short cycling the first thing you should do is check your air filters. Refer to an owner’s manual or call a professional if you do not know where to locate the filters or are not comfortable checking them yourself. Short cycling can be cause by restricted air flow and dirty air filters are one of the most common causes of this condition. Replacing the filter is a good habit to get into to keep air flowing freely. Other causes of restricted air flow that may be leading to your furnace’s short cycling include blocked air vents and registers. Makes sure that nothing is blocking the air registers throughout your home such as furniture or clutter. If neither of these issues seems to be the problem, call in a professional as soon as possible to diagnose the cause of your furnace short cycling in Newport, KY.

There are a number of other possible causes of short cycling that only a professional should deal with. Problems with the blower of a furnace are common culprits of short cycling. Older model gas furnaces used a belt and motor to drive the wheel which would blow air into the house. Nowadays most furnaces use what’s called a direct drive blower which does not require maintenance. However, if your furnace is older it is possible it is still using the separate motor and belt system type and a little lubrication could fix your short cycling problem. It may sound simple, but be sure that a professional handles the job. Changing an air filter is one thing, but when it comes to maintaining and repairing any inner workings of your furnace there is just no safe way to do it, for you or your furnace, without the training and experience that professionals have.

If you would like more information about short cycling or common furnace problems in Newport KY, call Greater Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning with any questions you may have. We’re always happy to share our knowledge and expertise with you. It’s important for you to understand the basics about the way your home comfort systems work and we can help you do that.

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