Ambient Comfort LLC Blog

Furnace Noises You Should Never Ignore

November 26th, 2018

woman looking shocked and surprisedWe probably don’t have to tell you that the dead of winter is about the worst possible time to have a furnace develop issues. But, it’s actually the time of year when heating systems are most likely to experience problems, due to the added stress they’re under. If you can detect problems early enough, however, you can have them repaired before they develop too much further.

However, you’ll need to be particularly vigilant if you hope to catch problems early on. One of the first indicators that something is amiss with the furnace is the presence of strange noises while the system is in operation. Keep reading for more information about common problem noises, and what causes them. And when you do need quality Camden County, NJ heating services, get in touch with our team.

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Heater Repair Needs You Want to Avoid

November 12th, 2018

Inside a gas furnace. Focus = the top of the middle flange. 12MP camera.Of all the problems or issues to deal with in your home during the winter, a broken down or malfunctioning furnace is probably among the worst. When you live in our area, it’s vital that you have a fully functional and efficient heating system in place. To accomplish this, you’ll first want to ensure that you schedule routine maintenance for the system before the season begins in earnest. For a furnace system this means once a year, while for a year-round heat pump or ductless system it means every 6 months.

Next, you want to ensure that you manage any need for heating repairs that you’re either alerted to during maintenance, or you suspect. Two heater repairs needs in particular that we get the most calls for as temperatures fade from comfortable fall levels to chillier winter levels is about a furnace system that won’t start, or one that won’t stop. These are definitely repairs you want to avoid, but what do they mean?

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No, You Should Not Attempt Duct Sealing on Your Own

October 29th, 2018

Male hands setting up ventilation system indoorsWith temperatures making a significant drop in the coming weeks, there’s no denying that winter is well on its way. That being said, it’s vital that you make sure your forced air heating system is ready for what’s to come, which includes scheduling routine maintenance for the system. Getting a professional heater tune-up is the best way to ensure that the system will function without any issues over the winter, and that it won’t cost more to run than it should.

There’s much more to keeping this heating system functioning as efficiently as possible, though. Maintenance is essential, of course, but it’s not the end all to be all. One of the biggest threats to energy loss you might face over the course of your homeownership is that of leaks from your ductwork. It’s something that too little people think about, but proper, professional, Camden County, NJ duct sealing can keep your HVAC systems from losing about 20-30% of the air moving through it.

Consider what this means—it’s conditioned air you’re paying for all winter long (and summer long, in the case of your air conditioner) that simply goes to waste. With your ducts properly sealed, however, you’ll see savings on your monthly energy bills.

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How Often Do Commercial HVAC Systems Need Tune-Ups?

October 15th, 2018

rooftop hvac unit on top of commercial buildingThe short answer to this is “once a year.” But the fact of the matter is, every business and commercial space is different and has varying needs.

To truly determine how often your commercial space requires commercial HVAC maintenance, we urge you to give us a call. In the meantime, read on to learn the benefits of being set up with a maintenance plan for your commercial space.

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Managing Your Indoor Air Quality: Dry Air Isn’t Your Only Threat This Winter

October 1st, 2018

Rear view of a young woman opening the curtains in the morningHow often do you think about the IAQ of your home? That is—the indoor air quality.

The thing is, according to sources such as WebMD, the quality of your indoor air can be worse than that of outdoors. The reason for this is because homes today have been constructed to be highly energy efficient. They are built with “tight” construction to prevent air loss from your HVAC systems and to prevent drafts inside the home. This is fantastic for homeowners as it helps you save money on your utility bills each month. However, it’s not great for that indoor air quality.

So what can you do about it?

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What Are the Steps Technicians Take During HVAC Maintenance?

September 17th, 2018

An air conditioning technician welds a connection prior to installing AC unit.In our previous post, we spoke a little about how important HVAC maintenance is. And with the official start of fall just a few short days away, the time to schedule heating maintenance is definitely now, if you haven’t already had this service done for the season.

Or maybe you are proactive, and have maintenance done like clockwork, in the fall for your heating system and in the spring for your air conditioner. This routine preventive maintenance keeps your HVAC system running well and can even extend the lifespan of the system.

But what actually happens during maintenance. What are our technicians actually doing? What are they looking for?

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Don’t Ignore the Benefits of HVAC Maintenance

September 3rd, 2018

technician working on outside unit of an air conditionerWhen was your last Gloucester County, NJ AC maintenance appointment? Have you ever scheduled maintenance? We get it—you might have a newer air conditioner. Or perhaps you’re a new homeowner and haven’t heard that this is a service that is required (versus being a “luxury” service) for one of your most expensive home appliance investments.

There are a couple of maintenance tasks you can, and should, do on your own when it comes to keeping your cooling system in good shape. But full, professional maintenance should definitely be handled by a trained and experienced HVAC technician, since we know how to handle any AC task that comes our way. This includes inspecting electrical connections and thoroughly cleaning the system—tasks that can be dangerous and cause injury in the wrong hands.

Still not convinced? Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of AC maintenance.

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Need to Replace Your HVAC System? Consider a Heat Pump

August 20th, 2018

heat-pump-floor-mounted-unitDid your air conditioner show signs of old age and wear this summer? Is your furnace on its last legs, leading you to wonder if it’s time for a new one? Have you been struggling to decide what you need to replace first, your air conditioner or your heating system?

If your answer to any or all of these questions was “yes,” then we have good news. There is one Gloucester County, NJ HVAC system that will serve all of your needs—the heat pump.

“But wait,” you might be thinking, “it’s called a heat pump, doesn’t that mean it’s only used for heating?”

Read on!

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How To Keep Your Home Evenly Heated

March 18th, 2018

Optimal comfort during the cold winter months is achieved when your home maintains consistent temperatures throughout every room. You’ll know you’ve got it right when you don’t have to put on or take off a sweater or adjust the thermostat when you move from one room to the next.

Many factors influence the heat throughout your house. Part of it is the design of the house itself. Another part is how the home is finished and equipped. A third part is how the home is maintained.

Working with Your Layout

Rooms with more exterior walls and more windows lose heat to the outside more quickly than rooms with fewer exterior walls and fewer windows. While changing the layout of a home is not a practical way to equalize the heating, there are some measures you can take to minimize this effect:

  • insulate exterior walls as heavily as possible
  • install high-quality, insulated windows
  • install insulating draperies or shades

Keeping Air Moving

If some rooms are getting more hot air than others, poor circulation may be the problem. Make sure that registers to the too-cool rooms are open, that they are not obstructed by furniture or other items, and that they are clean. Leave the doors to colder rooms open if possible, so that heat from the rest of the home can enter.

There may be plenty of hot air available, but it’s just not reaching those rooms. Have the ducts checked by a professional for leaks or obstructions. It is also possible that the ducts are undersized or poorly routed, and that replacing them with properly designed ducts will allow more hot air to get where it needs to go.

Check the Switches

If the ducts are in good shape, the problem may just be that the room with the thermostat gets warm sooner than others. Try setting the fan switch on the thermostat from “Auto” to “On.” This will keep the fan running and help equalize the flow of warm air throughout the house.

Hot air rises, and it’s likely several degrees warmer near the ceiling than near the floor. If the room has a ceiling fan, set it to turn in the direction that will push hot air down.

In the Zone

If all of these measures don’t equalize the temperature in your home, you should consider installing one or more additional zones. Each zone is a house is controlled by its own thermostat, and each one receives its own share of heat. This is also a good approach if you want certain areas to stay warmer or cooler than others.

The team of heating professionals at Ambient Comfort can keep your family comfortable this winter with regularly scheduled maintenance, repairs, ductwork inspection and more. Call us today at 856-213-6586 to schedule service and to learn about our maintenance plan. Check us out online for special savings and promotions. We are located in Vineland, New Jersey, and serve clients throughout most of South Jersey, in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden and Gloucester counties.

 

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Is Your Furnace Dangerous?

March 10th, 2018

While some have been known to last much longer, the typical lifespan of a home furnace is 15 to 20 years. Proper installation and maintenance are key to getting your money’s worth from your home heating system, but eventually, even the best cared-for furnace will have to be replaced.

A furnace in poor condition, whether because of poor maintenance, age, or both, operates inefficiently, requiring more fuel to heat a home. A bigger problem, though, is safety. A furnace that’s overdue for maintenance or replacement can put your family in danger.

The biggest issue is carbon monoxide, an invisible, odorless, toxic gas that is a byproduct of combustion. In a well-maintained furnace, the amount of carbon monoxide, or CO, produced is small, and it is vented to the outdoors where it quickly becomes harmless. But if a furnace is burning fuel inefficiently, the amount of CO produced will be higher. Should the furnace not vent the gas out of the home effectively, illness, permanent injury, or death could be the result.

This danger can be avoided by installing CO detectors in the home, and by having the furnace inspected annually by a home heating professional. At some point, however, so many parts may require replacement that it just makes more sense to replace the furnace itself. Considering that newer heating systems use new technology to operate more efficiently than old ones, the change might even pay for itself in reduced energy costs.

Furnaces are also a common cause of house fires. This occurs most often when residents carelessly leave flammable items too close to the furnace. It’s so important to keep old magazines and newspapers, boxes of clothes, flammable liquids, and other combustibles several feet away from the furnace. Aside from that, an annual checkup by a heating professional will ensure that gas or oil lines are intact, so that a fuel leak can not result in a fire.

We don’t mean to scare anyone. It’s not difficult to guard against home fires and CO poisoning caused by your furnace by following a few simple procedures:

  • install smoke and CO detectors throughout your home
  • test smoke and CO detectors monthly, and replace the batteries twice a year
  • have your furnace inspected and maintained annually by a heating professional

If your furnace is more than 20 years old, consider updating it with a new system. This may be long overdue if you added an addition to your home since the furnace was installed or finished a previously unfinished basement or attic. Your furnace was probably specified for the amount of living space you had at the time it was installed. If you’ve been making it warm more space than was originally intended, it’s probably been working overtime. A new furnace designed to heat the current size of your home will do it more efficiently.

Ambient Comfort can make sure you have the right furnace for your home and that it operates safely through regular maintenance. Call us today at 856-213-6586 to schedule service on your HVAC system or to learn more about our maintenance plan so you can rest assured knowing your family is warm and safe this winter. Check us out online for special savings and promotions. We are located in Vineland, New Jersey, and serve clients throughout most of South Jersey, in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden and Gloucester counties.

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