Preventing Carbon Monoxide Leaks in Furnaces

January 3, 2022

Known as the silent killer, carbon monoxide gas is deadly because it is so hard to detect. Leaks often occur inside of homes, which makes them even more dangerous. While the consequences of a carbon monoxide leak are potentially deadly, there are things you can do to reduce the risk. Read on to learn more about carbon monoxide leaks, signs of poisoning, and furnace safety. Carbon Monoxide Poisoning: What Is It? Carbon monoxide, or CO, is a poisonous yet tasteless and odorless gas. It’s a by-product of the combustion process, such as that occurring in a furnace. When a person breathes in too much gas, it displaces the oxygen in their blood, leading to poisoning and cell death. Because the process happens so gradually, and because the gas is nearly impossible to detect, victims often inhale a significant amount of it before any effects are noticed. How Do Carbon Monoxide Leaks Happen Inside the Home? There are a few ways CO can accumulate inside a home, but a malfunctioning heating system is one of the most common causes. A furnace that’s been installed improperly, is damaged, or is suffering from restricted airflow may create a lethal carbon monoxide leak. The...

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Understanding Heat Exchangers and How They Work

December 20, 2021

Furnaces are essential to keep you warm and comfortable during the cold months. The furnace relies on a heat exchanger for maximum heat and clean air. Heat exchangers are by far the most important parts of the furnace. They are the component that gives you the advantage of a heated home without the dangers of inhaling any toxic gasses. Most homeowners forget about them until a problem arises. Therefore, you need to understand what a heat exchanger is and how it works to ensure that you and your family are always safe from any fire hazards. What Is a Heat Exchanger? A heat exchanger is a metal device found inside the furnace, between the combustion chamber and blower. It helps transfer heat from the combustion chamber to your home via the heating ducts. It also keeps you from carbon monoxide poisoning. There is a mixture of poisonous gases called “flue gases” in the combustion chamber that is not safe for you to inhale. The heat exchanger is responsible for keeping those gases in the combustion chamber. The heat exchanger starts at the furnace’s burner assembly to the point where the chimney vents join with the furnace. Combined with a metal...

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Tips on Prepping for a Furnace Replacement at Your Home

November 16, 2021

When the time comes to replace your existing furnace, it can be an exciting experience. The idea of getting a new system with brand-new features can help to put your mind at ease when it comes to worrying about wintertime breakdowns. To ensure that your new furniture replacement goes smoothly, here are some tips that you’ll want to follow. Call for a Consultation The first step in any furnace replacement is to contact a professional to pick out the furnace that you want to have installed. It’s a good idea to do some background research to figure out what specific features you’re looking for in a unit and the price range that you can afford. A specialist will come out to your home and assess its physical needs and listen to what your specific needs are. Then, they’ll make a recommendation on the best system to meet your needs. Once you decide on the specific furnace that you want, they’ll be able to set up an installation date. Additionally, you’ll want to ask them about what you need to do prior to them coming to your home to ensure a smooth installation process. You also want to double-check about what...

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What Is the Best Bedroom Temperature for a Restful Night’s Sleep?

October 12, 2021

While most doctors recommend a sleeping temperature of around 65 degrees Fahrenheit, the optimal temperature range for individuals can vary. To find the ideal temperature for your bedroom, it may take a little experimentation and patience. After a few nights of sleeping with temperatures in the range of 60 to 67 degrees, you should have an idea of the temperature that gives you the most restful night’s sleep. The Optimal Temperature Range for Sleep When you sleep, your body naturally cools by a few degrees. Your body temperature continues to drop as you go through the stages of your sleep cycle, and it rises again after you wake up. This natural process of cooling and warming is a normal part of your circadian rhythm, which is an instinctual sleeping cycle that follows your routine of light exposure, physical activity and bedroom temperature. Therefore, your bedroom temperature plays a big role in signaling to your body that it’s time to sleep and ensuring that you stay asleep. While most people report that a hot, stuffy room disrupts their sleep, excessively cold temperatures can also be a problem. When bedroom temperatures are too hot, your body has difficulty adhering to its circadian...

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When Is the Right Time to Replace Your Furnace

September 13, 2021

Unfortunately, furnaces don’t last forever and wondering when yours may give out leads to tremendous stress. You don’t have to wait for it to give out completely; you can plan and budget for a replacement. Here’s what to look for that’ll indicate you should plan for an upgrade before the cold settles in for the winter. It’s Simply Getting Old With proper maintenance, the average forced-air gas furnace has a service life of 15 to 20 years. However, factors like your air quality and lack of maintenance may shorten that life. Rather than waiting until your unit fails completely, start planning for a replacement as your unit gets older. Generally speaking, older units are less efficient than new ones, even with the same efficiency rating when new. If your furnace is nearing the end of its expected service life, start planning your replacement. Proactively planning your replacement keeps you from having to deal with it as an emergency. Not only does this help you budget the expense, but it also keeps you from incurring emergency or after-hour rates. Rising Heating Costs Beyond your unit’s age, look at your utility costs year over year. If your heating expenses are consistently higher...

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How To Protect Your AC Unit From Wildfire Smoke

August 3, 2021

Modern air conditioners serve several different functions. Although people value this equipment for keeping their living environments comfortably cool, air conditioners also help regulate indoor humidity and improve indoor air quality (IAQ). Best of all, you can continue using your air conditioner during wildfire season to minimize the impact that smoke has on your home. Following are six tips for getting the most from this equipment without causing any undue wear. 1. Upgrade Your Air Conditioner’s Air Filters The effectiveness and efficiency of your HVAC system is largely reliant upon its air filters. This is especially true when it comes to maintaining an acceptably high IAQ. During the fire season, you’ll want to spend a bit more on air filters to get the best-rated options possible. Air filters have a maximum efficiency reporting value or MERV rating. The higher that a filter’s MERV rating is, the more small-sized particulates it can pick up. MERV ratings range between 1-16. Filters with ratings of 11 or above are recommended for homes that are regularly subjected to wildfire smoke. Once you’ve found a suitable option for upgrading your air conditioner’s filter, change the filter out. This is important to do even if you’ve...

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How To Prevent Bugs from Coming Through Air Conditioning

July 26, 2021

Of all the uninvited guests that you’ve hosted in your home, insects are likely your least favorite. Countless consumers throughout Meridian and McCall, Idaho, contend with these pests during the hottest portion of the year. For insects, air conditioners provide easy access to potable water, nighttime warmth, and indoor cooling. The good news is that there are five easy ways to keep bugs out while still enjoying your air conditioner. 1. Start by Inspecting Your AC Condenser The AC condenser outside of your home is a prime entrance for insects. After all, there’s always plenty of moisture here because of all the condensation. This both acts as a source of sustenance and creates an ideal space for breeding. Step outside and check this component for holes or cracks. Where openings exist, close them up with concrete or caulk. This is important to do even in areas where cracks and holes are small. These tiny openings still represent viable entrances for pests. 2. Stay on Top of Landscape Maintenance Rambunctious shrubs, trees, and other foliage can definitely be problematic when it comes to keeping pests out of your air conditioner. You never want to let branches or other natural protrusions grow...

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How to Prepare Your AC Unit for the Summer

June 15, 2021

As summer approaches, you must complete a home preparation checklist. One of the most important items on the checklist is preparing your air conditioner. You probably didn’t use it much during the comfortable spring weather, so it’s time to get it ready for heavy usage. Here’s how to prepare an AC unit for summertime. Clean the HVAC System A clean HVAC system runs efficiently and cools better. Clean the filter to start with a clean slate. Continue to clean the filter about once a week during the summer months. If you have a replaceable filter, be sure to change it every one to three months. You should also clean the area right outside your HVAC unit. Trim any bushes or trees that might clog the system with leaves and other natural debris. Clean and Inspect Ductwork The ductwork in your house carries the air from your central unit air conditioner to different rooms. Central air works far better than a window unit that can only cool the room it’s in and so much further. Of course, it costs more for better quality cooling capabilities. You want to keep the ducts working properly to ensure you get the most out of...

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Why Does My Air Conditioner Smell?

May 10, 2021

As the hot weather has settled in around Meridian, you have finally started up your air conditioner. To your surprise, when you did, there was an awful smell that accompanied the cooler air. Find out what is causing the distinctive aroma and what you can do to fix it. The Wrong Size System Having the right size system for your home is important to keeping the temperature comfortable. When your system is too big, the cooling cycles are very short, preventing it from dehumidifying your air. If your home’s humidity is greater than 50%, it can lead to a musty smell. Dirty Evaporator Coil The evaporator coil is located inside the unit, usually with your furnace or air handler. The air passes through the coil, transferring heat to the refrigerant to be vented outside. As air passes through the coil, it deposits small particles that already made it past your air filter. These particles collect over time, restricting air from flowing through the coils effectively. As the system runs, it condenses moisture from the air, which these particles absorb. The air and particles compound and emit a dingy smell as the air circulates back into your house. Clogged Condensate Drain...

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What Does Electrical Maintenance Include?

April 14, 2021

It is easy to forget about your electrical system, casually turning electrical appliances on and off every day. Some simple annual maintenance can help prevent catastrophic problems down the road. But what should that maintenance include to ensure your system is as safe as possible? Why Electrical Maintenance Is Important Most of your electrical system is hidden, with the face of outlets and light switches being all that some people see. However, what happens behind the plates and panels is what leads to major problems. Dust, moisture, and age are all problems with an electrical system. Dust near your connections can risk igniting a fire. Moisture can cause corrosion on your electrical connections, increasing resistance as electricity flows through the circuit. Increased resistance increases heat and can ignite dust. It is this increased resistance that leads to most electrical house fires. Taking a few minutes to inspect and maintain your electrical system will improve your electrical performance and protect your home. Inspect Your Breaker Panel One of the best places to start is your breaker panel. However, you want to go beyond the face of the panel to see if any breakers are tripped. Rather, you want to pull the...

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