If you’re trying to find ways to save money this winter, why not start with your heating bill. Don’t worry; we won’t suggest setting your thermostat to 60 degrees. There are easier and more practical ways to lower your home’s energy consumption this heating season. To get you started, we’ve listed 5 money-saving tips below.
- Take a walk around your home and make sure none of your vents are blocked by furniture. When decorating your home it’s easy to situate a couch or armchair over a vent without considering how the obstructed air flow will affect your energy bill. Unfortunately, the blockage makes it difficult for the air leaving the vent to circulate properly, which translates to money wasted. Before heating your house, simply rearrange your furniture to ensure all your vents are clear of obstructions.
- Save money by remembering to close the damper on your fireplace. Forgetting to do so will lead to heated air escaping through your chimney.
- A yearly furnace check-up is key to increasing your system’s efficiency and reducing your energy bill. A maintenance plan not only ensures your heating system is functioning effectively, but it also lessens your furnace’s need for costly repairs.
- If you’re serious about minimizing energy waste and lowering your heating bill, we suggest scheduling an energy audit for your house. An audit will give you a better understanding of where your home’s weaknesses are, and it will provide you with a strategy to improve the efficiency level of your house.
- After your furnace reaches a certain age, its efficiency begins to decline. If your unit is 12 to 15 years old, you’re likely to see a spike in your energy bill, even when your heating choices remain the same each year. Older furnaces are also prone to frequent malfunctions, which can cause a decline in their efficiency. Replacing your furnace with a new one can save you a great deal of money in the years to come.
If minimizing your heating bill this winter is at the top of your to-do-list, please contact M&M Mechanical, Inc. to schedule heating repair in Lorton VA or an energy audit.
As the warm weather begins to wane and the leaves turn into a riot of colors, you begin to dream of cool winter nights with a lovely fire burning and a warm cup of cocoa. What you’re not dreaming of is shivering under a pile of blankets because your home’s heating system has experienced a problem and stopped working. The best time to schedule regular maintenance on your furnace and heating system is during fall.
Here are a few reasons to consider scheduling a maintenance call with a heating contractor during this lull between extremes.
Your heating system uses the air in your home to heat your home. As the system pulls in more air to heat it, the air travels through an air filter. If the air filter gets clogged, the motor in your heating system must work harder and become hotter to heat the air before sending it back out into the house. This causes a rise in your utility bills. One of the many things regular maintenance includes is an air filter change.
Avoid Emergency Repairs
Your house’s heater doesn’t just stop working all of a sudden without warning signs. However, many of these signs are inside the unit where you can’t see them. In many cases, it starts with a small part that needs to be replaced as part of regular maintenance. When you have a fall service call, the technician locates these issues and can therefore help to make the needed repairs so that you don’t require emergency repairs later on.
Help Extend the Life of Your Unit
Your HVAC system lasts between 10 to 15 years, and that’s a large span. How long it actually lasts is the result of a few factors, such as quality of the unit and regular maintenance. Regular maintenance ensures the unit stays cleaner, works more efficiently, and keeps wear and tear on parts to a minimum.
At M&M Mechanical, we’re dedicated to helping you stay warm during the winter months and keeping your HVAC system in great working order. We encourage you to give us a call today to schedule an appointment.
You’re probably familiar with all the little noises your furnace makes as it operates, from the sound of it kicking on to the soft hum it emits as it warms your home. Unfortunately, those normal furnace noises are sometimes interrupted by an unexpected sound that is anything but typical. If your furnace in Alexandria VA has started making strange, loud noises while it heats your home, you are most likely dealing with a malfunction. To help you tell the difference between regular and irregular sounds, we’ve created a list of noises that may indicate there is a problem with your furnace.
A Loud Bang
If you hear a bang or pop when your furnace starts up, you are probably dealing with dirty furnace burners. The dirt can stop the burners from immediately igniting, meaning a build-up of gas occurs. When the burners finally do ignite, you will hear a bang or a pop, which is actually a small explosion taking place. Ignoring this malfunction is extremely dangerous and can lead to a more serious repair, such as, a cracked heat exchange. A yearly tune-up and proper maintenance can prevent this issue from happening, however, if your furnace is already experiencing this problem, turn it off and call a HVAC specialist.
A Clanking Noise
When a part in your furnace is loose or disconnected, it will begin knocking against the inside of your system, which causes a clanking or rattling sound. Although your furnace has a number of parts that can become loose, the blower motor is a likely culprit. Enlisting the help of a HVAC technician will get you the answers you need.
A Whining Sound
Your furnace will emit a high-pitched whining sound if the bearings in its’ blower motor lack proper lubrication. While not as serious as the other malfunctions mentioned above, the noise still needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Scheduling a furnace inspection at the start of every heating season will ensure this issue doesn’t happen again.
Ignoring abnormal sounds can turn a simple malfunction into an expensive repair. If your furnace is making an unusual noise, please contact M&M Mechanical today.
If you have an old furnace, then you have a metal flue running up through your home. The flue removes the toxic combustion products from your furnace. If any leaks occur in your flue, then these harmful gasses can enter your home. New high-efficiency furnaces not only save energy but have a major advantage in keeping your home safe.
What is so bad about my flue?
The high temperature of the flue gasses force the use of metal for the flue material. Over time, the flue can corrode on the inside because some of the gas condenses and forms acid. You will not know about this corrosion until there is a hole in the flue. If your indoor humidity gets too high, then corrosion can develop on the outside of the flue. A leak can also result from damage to the flue. Deadly gasses, like carbon monoxide, can enter your home from a damaged, leaky flue.
What is so different about the high-efficiency furnace?
The design of a high-efficiency furnace dramatically lowers the temperature of the exhaust gas. This is how it achieves higher efficiency. There is condensation, but it occurs in the part of the furnace designed to accommodate it. The lower exhaust temperature allows the use of low-cost plastic pipe. The pipe can be routed horizontally to the nearest exterior wall. Damage is much less likely from the stronger, corrosion resistant plastic pipe.
The choice to upgrade to a high-efficiency furnace involves more benefits than just energy savings. Contact us at M&M Mechanical to discuss your heating options before the onset of cold weather.
Whether it is small problem or a large one, anything that keeps your furnace from working properly needs to be addressed right away. And some issues that are found and repaired soon enough can save you a lot of money down the road. What are some common problems, you ask?
Dirty Air Filters. Air filters should be cleaned or replaced once a month. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. Dirty filters make the furnace work harder to circulate air because it hinders the air flow. Eventually, it might affect the limit switch that runs the fan.
Too Much Noise. A noisy furnace can have many causes. There may be a mechanical malfunction or clogged air flow. Turning off and on too often can be a defective thermostat. Rumbling and sputtering is not the sign of a healthy or effective furnace.
Not Enough Heat. Obviously, you should make sure the unit is large enough for your space. After that, the thermostat should be checked to make sure it is working properly. Settings for the thermostat and working batteries can also affect this function. When all else fails, you should check the power and the pilot light.
Improper Maintenance. Your furnace should be inspected by a professional at least once a year. They can fix small problems and recommend preventative measures to keep your furnace running at top performance.
A well-functioning furnace is vital to your home’s comfort. It also reduces your power bill. Keeping ahead of the problems and following these few guidelines will give you a furnace that will last for years.
We encourage you to contact us at M&M Mechanical, Inc. for your heating service needs.