Command Comfort Blog : Archive for November, 2014

Common Ductless Heating Repairs

Friday, November 28th, 2014

Ductless systems avoid a lot of the problems that plague more traditional heating systems. Unfortunately, they aren’t perfect. Ductless heaters still have a number of common problems of which every homeowner should be aware. Let’s take a look at some of the most common ductless heating problems that require repairs.

Refrigerant Leaks

When a ductless heating system is installed, it is “charged” with a set amount of refrigerant. This refrigerant is what allows the ductless system to heat your home, by being evaporated to draw in heat and then condensed to expel it in another place. If a leak develops in the refrigerant line, the initial charge will drain over time until there isn’t enough to transport heat. At this point, your ductless system will be pretty much unable to do its job. If you notice liquid of any kind dripping or pooling on or under your ductless system, it’s a good idea to call a professional to take a look at it.

Broken Fan Belt

The fan belt is a rubber loop that transfers motion from the motor to the fan. Over time, wear and tear from everyday use can cause this belt to stretch and develop cracks. This deprives the belt of the elasticity it needs to operate properly. If left untreated, the fan will eventually break. With no connection between the fan and the motor, there is no way to circulate air through the room. If your ductless heater turns on but doesn’t seem to be blowing air, you may have a broken fan belt. Pay attention to the noises your unit makes, as well. A loud squealing sound on startup is an indication of a failing fan belt.

Motor Breakdown

The motor is what makes the whole ductless heating system run, and is obviously a vital part. Upon occasion, the bearings inside the motor can wear down and create friction. This creates a lot of extra heat when the motor is running, and can eventually cause it to overheat. If you hear a grinding noise coming from your ductless unit, turn it off and call a professional.

If you’re experiencing problems with your ductless heating system, call Command A/C. We offer professional heating services throughout Cypress area.

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Will Thanksgiving Turkey Really Make You Sleepy?

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

We’ve all heard it before: you feel so sleepy after a Thanksgiving meal because of the main event: the turkey. For years, people have credited extraordinary levels of tryptophan in turkey as the reason we all feel the need to nap after the annual feast. But contrary to this popular mythology, tryptophan is probably not he largest responsible party for your post-meal exhaustion.

Tryptophan is an essential amino acid, which means it’s something that our bodies need but do not produce naturally. Your body uses tryptophan to help make vitamin B3 and serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that sends chemicals to the brain to aid in sleep. But in order to get this essential amino acid, we have to eat foods that contain it.

Turkey has somewhat high levels of tryptophan, but so do many other foods, including eggs, peanuts, chocolate, nuts, bananas, and most other meats and dairy products. In fact, ounce-for-ounce cheddar cheese contains a greater amount of tryptophan than turkey. In order for tryptophan to make you feel sleepy, you would have to consume it in excessive amounts, and serotonin is usually only produced by tryptophan on an empty stomach.

The truth is, overeating is largely responsible for the “food coma” many people describe post-Thanksgiving. It takes a lot of energy for your body to process a large meal, and the average Thanksgiving plate contains about twice as many calories as is recommended for daily consumption. If anything, high levels of fat in the turkey cause sleepiness, as they require a lot of energy for your body to digest. Lots of carbohydrates, alcohol, and probably a bit of stress may also be some of the reasons it feels so satisfying to lay down on the couch after the meal and finally get a little bit of shut-eye.

If you feel the need to indulge in a heaping dose of tryptophan this year, go ahead! Turkey also contains healthy proteins and may even provide a boost for your immune system. Here at Command A/C, we hope your Thanksgiving is full of joy and contentment this year. Happy feasting!

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It’s Time to Schedule Heating Maintenance

Friday, November 14th, 2014

It’s almost the holidays which means it’s time to prepare your heating system for the winter months. The best way to do this is by scheduling maintenance. Maintenance for your heating system isn’t a quick visual inspection. It is an in-depth tune-up for your system, and its benefit can carry you through the entire winter season. It is recommended that you schedule your heating system for maintenance annually, so if it’s been more than 12 months since your last maintenance appointment, call Command A/C today!

What Happens During a Maintenance Appointment?

Here is a general overview of what happens during a routine maintenance appointment:

  • Thorough inspection of entire system
  • Small repairs as needed (corroded/frayed wiring, worn fan belts, etc.)
  • Cleaning of components, including burner assembly
  • Adjustments and lubrication of components
  • Inspection of components for cracks or holes
  • Checking and cleaning blower
  • Check of refrigerant levels (for heat pumps only)
  • Safety checks, including for carbon monoxide
  • Testing of system performance

What Are the Benefits of Maintenance?

  • Better energy efficiency – your heating system was made to operate at a certain level of energy efficiency. When it is dirty and worn out, it can’t achieve the energy efficiency it should. The cleaning your system receives during maintenance allows it to operate at the efficiency level it was made to.
  • Better comfort – a dirty and worn system can have a difficult time achieving the temperature set on your thermostat. The thorough tune-up your system receives during a maintenance appointment allows it to operate as it should.
  • Prevents repairs – during a maintenance appointment, your system is adjusted, cleaned and lubricated, and small repairs are made. This helps get you ahead of potential problems and prevents repair.
  • Extends life of the system – maintenance keeps your system in good working order so that when it operates, it doesn’t operate under stress. Ensuring your system doesn’t operate under stress helps extend the life of the system.

Scheduling your heating system for maintenance before the cold weather settles in can help both you and your system throughout the winter months. Call Command A/C today and schedule heating service in Cypress with one of our experts.

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What Is a Mercury Sensor?

Friday, November 7th, 2014

Every furnace has a safety device that senses the burner flame. In certain types of furnaces, this component may be a mercury sensor. Furnaces are no longer manufactured with mercury sensors, but the sensors are still produced as replacement parts. If your heating system has a mercury sensor, you’ll want a professional to handle any problems with it as mercury sensors can be delicate, somewhat complex instruments. Command A/C has the trained and certified technicians for all your heating needs in Cypress, CA, so if you are experiencing problems with your heater, call us today.

How Does a Mercury Sensor Work?

In a combustion heating system, the flame must be “proved”; in other words, the safety controls of the system need to know that a flame is present and burning correctly before it will allow fuel to enter the combustion chamber for ignition. When the sensor acknowledges the presence of a flame and that it’s burning correctly, the main fuel valve opens to start ignition. The reason the flame needs to be proved is to ensure that the fuel doesn’t flood the combustion chamber, which can be a potentially dangerous situation.

A mercury sensor’s job is to prove that the burner flame is operating correctly so that gas will continue to flow to the burner until the temperature set on your thermostat is reached. A small tube inside the sensor is filled with mercury that evaporates as it is heated. One end of the mercury sensor sits directly in the pilot flame while the other end is connected to the main gas valve. As the mercury heats and evaporates, pressure builds in the tube, forcing the remaining liquid mercury down the tube to the switches at the main valve; this action is similar to what happens with a mercury thermometer as the temperature outside rises. The pressure inside the tube becomes great enough that the liquid forces the switches at the main gas valve to open, allowing the gas to ignite and light the gas jets in the burner.

Repairing a mercury sensor isn’t a DIY kind of project and neither is replacing one. Instead, call the experts at Command A/C and schedule an appointment for heating repair in Cypress, CA.

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