Command Comfort Blog : Archive for February, 2014

Alternatives to Traditional Heating Systems in Huntington Beach

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

When it comes to heating our homes in Southern California, the gas-powered furnace is the most common option. These effective and efficient systems have remained popular for decades, and there’s no indication they will ever go out of use.

Although natural gas furnaces are excellent choices for heaters, they aren’t your only option among heating systems in Huntington Beach, CA. Perhaps you don’t have a natural gas line, or maybe you dislike the potential safety risks of using a gas furnace. Maybe you simply want to make a change. You do have some great options available as alternatives, and we’ll go over some of them. When you want to know more, call Command A/C and talk to our heating technicians to get started on finding the ideal alternative heater for your home.

Some alternative choices for heating

  • Heat pumps: Heat pumps provide both heating and cooling, which makes them superb picks for Southern California’s weather—and they eliminate the need for two separate systems. Heat pumps operate on the same principle as an air conditioner, except they can reverse the direction of heat exchange. You’ll also save money, since they use only a small amount of electricity to operate. A family of four can save up to 30% on their heating bills by switching from a furnace to a heat pump.
  • Ductless mini splits: These are heat pumps that come with an added feature: no need for ducts! Ductless mini splits don’t use a central indoor unit, but instead separate blowers mounted in different parts of your house that send the conditioned air directly into your living spaces. If you are building a new home or adding on a room to your current home, ductless mini splits are a great choice.
  • Electric furnaces: If you still want the convenience of a furnace in your home but don’t have a natural gas line, the electric furnace is always an option. Electric furnaces last longer than their gas-powered brothers, cost less to install, require fewer repairs, and don’t have safety issues because of carbon monoxide. Although they cost more to run, this isn’t as much an issue in Southern California because you won’t need to use the furnace often.

Find the right heating system for your home

Houses are as individual as their owners, so each one will have specific requirements for heating. Before you make a decision about the heating system you want for your family, contact professionals like those at Command A/C and find out exactly what type of heater will do the job you need. You’ll require professional installers eventually, so have them involved from the start so you won’t go wrong when you have to choose from the many available heating systems in Huntington Beach, CA.

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Signs That You Need to Replace Your Furnace

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Furnaces can last for many years if they receive regular maintenance and timely repairs. However, no furnace can endure forever, and you need to know what signs to look for to indicate that your furnace has come to the end of the road. We’ve put together a list of the most tell-tale warnings about the need for furnace replacement.

If you’re wondering where to go for new heating system installation in Long Beach, CA, look no further than Command A/C. We have the experience and training to deliver you excellent new heating for your home.

Three signs of impending furnace replacement

  1. Constant loud operation: Strange noises from a furnace cabinet are good early warning signs about repairs. When these noises become the rule instead of the exception, the furnace has probably moved beyond the point where repairs will do any good. Schedule an appointment with an HVAC professional to find out if it’s time for a new installation.
  2. Rise in heating bills: If you have had your furnace long enough—and if you are considering replacement, you probably have—you should have a solid idea of what to expect from your heating bills each month. A sudden leap in those bills often means that the furnace needs repairs. If the heating bills gradually rise and remain that way, however, it often indicates that the furnace is coming to the end of its service and can no longer do the efficient job it once did. If repairs do not change the situation, ask the repair technician if retiring the heater and scheduling new installation is the best choice.
  3. The furnace begins to rust: Furnaces do not use water to create heat, but nonetheless they can rust because of a reaction between metal and the exhaust gas. This usually takes many years to occur; when you do start to notice rust along the cabinet or on interior parts, it is a strong sign that the furnace has outlived its usefulness and should be replaced. Because rust can cause cracks in the heat exchanger and carbon monoxide leaks, you should have the replacement done as soon as possible.

Always account for furnace age

When considering any of the three signs above, always keep your furnace’s age in mind. A furnace that has worked for over 20 years is due for a replacement, even if it is operating well in most regards. At the first sign of trouble, you should consider replacing it. For younger furnaces, look into repair possibilities first—and always remember to schedule regular maintenance for it so it won’t prematurely age.

For the knowledgeable technicians you need, call Command A/C. We can help you determine if it’s time for new heating installation in Long Beach, CA.

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The Original Valentine’s Day Greeting Cards

Friday, February 14th, 2014

It’s hard to imagine Valentine’s Day without the traditional greeting cards, whether accompanying a gift of flowers and candy, or sent between children in a school room. For commercial greeting card companies, February 14th is as important to them as the December holidays, Easter, and Mother’s Day.

Valentine’s Day as a celebration of romantic love predates printed greeting cards by a few centuries. In fact, the reason that sending romantic greeting cards became popular was because of the most un-romantic thing you can imagine: a reduction in postage rates.

In 1765, Parliament authorized the creation of “Penny Posts” that used a uniform rate of one old penny per letter throughout Great Britain and Ireland. Printers took advantage of the ease with which people could send letters to each other on Valentine’s Day by crafting cards with love poems on them. Many of these verses were collected in 1797 in the book The Young Man’s Valentine Writer, which was a resource for the lover with a romantic soul but not the most confident poetry style.

By the mid-19th-century, the Valentine’s Day greeting card was flourishing across England. Although people still followed a tradition of creating handmade Valentine’s Day cards from lace, ribbons, and flowers, commercially produced cards now overtook them. In 1835, the English post office mailed 60,000 valentines. As production expenses dropped, the English card manufacturers branched out creatively with humorous and sometimes vulgar cards… many of which we would find startlingly familiar in the 21st century. One of the common jokes on these cards was to design them to look like marriage certificates or court summons.

Across the Atlantic, the United States was slower to embrace the popular British custom. It wasn’t until 1847 that a U.S. printer mass-produced greeting cards for Valentine’s Day. Only two years later, American journalists noted how rapidly people in the country had embraced the tradition, turning into a fad that has never died down. The woman who printed the first U.S. Valentine’s Day card, Esther Howland, is today recognized by the Greeting Card Association with the annual “Esther Howland Award for a Greeting Card Visionary.”

The greeting card industry certainly has reason to thank Ms. Howland. Her idea of going into business printing romantic greeting cards, which came to her after she received a traditional English valentine when she was 19 years old, now sells 190 million cards in the U.S. every year. That number doesn’t include the smaller exchange cards used in elementary school classrooms, which would swell the number to 1 billion. (Who receives the most Valentine’s Day cards each year? Teachers!)

Whether you send out Valentine’s Day cards—handmade, store-bought, digital—or not, we at Command A/C hope you have a happy February 14th.

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Why Does Heating Matter in Long Beach, CA?

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

The weather in Long Beach is almost as wonderful as you can find in the Continental United States. We have warm summers that only occasionally reach uncomfortable highs, and winters that hover around mere ten degrees colder on average than the summers.

With this kind of balmy climate, it seems odd that you should think about your home’s heating system—but heating still matters here, as we’ll explain. For the heating repair service in Long Beach, CA that will make every day wonderful, call Command A/C.

Yes, it can get cold here

With an average winter high in the upper 60s, Long Beach is a perfect vacation escape. However, the average low during that same time is the mid-40s, mostly during the evenings. That’s cold enough for most homes to need heaters, especially houses with large windows or inferior insulation. Occasionally, the temperature can take some surprising plunges. The record low for winter is a chilly, sub-freezing 25°F, and the high-30s can strike at almost any time during the season. You can’t expect it to always be sunny and warm, so make sure you have a solid heating system.

We need to take special notice of our heaters

Paradoxically, the less we use our heaters, the more careful we have to be about maintaining them. In a region of the U.S. with heavy winters, homeowners use their heaters often enough to pick up on repair needs quickly and respond to them. In a climate like Long Beach, it’s easy to ignore a malfunction in a heater and let it slide, hoping for the next warm day. This can mean getting caught off-guard when the heater suddenly breaks down from neglect.

We need heating efficiency as much as anyone

No matter how much you operate your heating system each year, you don’t want to pay more than you have to when it runs. If you don’t take good care of your heating system with maintenance and prompt repairs, it will waste money each time you turn it on, often without you realizing it because you aren’t as used to watching carefully over your heating bills.

It’s true that you aren’t likely to encounter the kind of heating malfunction emergency that people would in places that can endure three-day ice storms. But a heating emergency is uncomfortable to wait through and expensive to repair. It’s important to keep your heater working at its best for whenever you need it, so call for heating repair in Long Beach, CA as soon as you notice a malfunction, and enroll in a regular maintenance program so that you’ll have your yearly check-ups taken care of.

Call Command A/C to help keep your heater healthy. Ask about our Ultimate Service Club: it’s not only a yearly check-up on your heater, but also a check-up on your air conditioner… and you don’t need us to tell you how much that matters!

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