Command Comfort Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Heating’

3 Reasons Your Heating System Won’t Turn On

Monday, February 8th, 2016

It can be disheartening to turn on your heating system and have nothing happen, especially if it’s a cold night here in Cypress, CA. The first thing you should do when you recognize this is to turn the system off and check the thermostat to see if it’s been turned off or is malfunctioning. After that, you should check your breaker box to make sure an electrical surge didn’t disrupt your heater’s functioning. If it’s not either of those things, the problem likely lies in the heater itself, a situation that requires a trained technician to correct. There are numerous reasons why your heater won’t turn on. We’ve listed three of them below, so that you understand just how many different causes there may be.  It takes a heating professional to properly diagnose the problem.

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How to Prevent Cracked Heat Exchangers

Monday, February 1st, 2016

Few repairs on your furnace are more important or consternation than a cracked heat exchanger. The component is heated by the burners and in turn heats the air to be blown into your Cypress, CA home, while venting toxins form the burning gas out of your system. The exchangers then cool down when you turn off your system, and those extreme temperature changes can take a toll after a while. When the metal of the heat exchanger cracks, it will leak toxic gasses into your home and needs to be replaced before you run the system again.

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Beware of Short Cycling in Your Heating System

Monday, January 25th, 2016

Heating systems are being used more often than normal here in Cypress, CA, with lower temperatures dominating in recent weeks and much-needed rainfall in Southern California bringing a cooling trend to the weather. Your system has likely seen sparing use in the past few months, but that is changing, and with the demand for your heater going up, it pays to keep an eye out for potential problems that can result in a breakdown (or at least a significant repair bill). Among the most concerning signs is short-cycling, when your heater turns on, then off again rapidly, then on again and so on throughout the day. What causes that and why is it such a problem? Read on for the answers.

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3 Common Air Handler Problems

Monday, January 5th, 2015

It’s safe to say that most homeowners don’t really think about the inner workings of their heating systems. This is unfortunate, as the more knowledge a homeowner has about his or her heating system, the better he or she will be able to take care of that system. In an effort to help you increase your heating system’s lifespan, we’re going to discuss 3 common air handler problems that homeowners run into. The more you know about these issues, the better prepared you’ll be to identify potential problems before they occur.

Broken Fan Belt

The fan belt is what makes it possible for the motor to turn the fan in the air handler. It is a long loop, often made of rubber, which connects the motor to the fan itself. When the motor turns on, it rotates the fan belt which rotates the fan. Over time, the fan belt will stretch and begin to develop cracks. When this happens, it creates a kind of squealing sound that can be heard from outside the furnace. If not replaced, the fan belt will eventually snap and render the air handler useless. If you hear a squealing noise coming from your furnace, get it checked by a professional right away.

Burned Out Motor

The motor inside the air handler is equipped with several parts called “bearings.” These bearings are designed to reduce the friction that the motor encounters while it’s running, allowing it to work more efficiently and live longer. The bearings accomplish this by using oil to lubricate the parts of the motor. Eventually, however, the bearings can run out of lubrication. This steadily increases the amount of friction the motor encounters. The resistance keeps climbing until the motor burns itself out. If you hear a grinding noise coming from your furnace, it’s probably the motor bearings failing. Call a professional immediately.

Clogged Air Filter

The air filter is a part designed to keep dust and debris from entering the furnace and causing damage. If it goes more than 3 months without being replaced, however, it can become so clogged with debris that it stifles the air flow into the furnace. This can cause the furnace to overheat and create a fire risk, among other issues. Be sure to clean or replace your air filter at least once every 3 months.

If you’d like to know more, call Command A/C. We provide heating services throughout Cypress.

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How Does Faulty Ductwork Affect Heating?

Friday, December 12th, 2014

At first glance, the ductwork for your heating system may seem like an incredibly simple construction. Truth be told, it kind of is. Ducts are usually simple rectangular tunnels of sheet metal, with the sole purpose of directing air throughout the house. Being simple doesn’t mean that they are trivial, however. The quality of your ductwork has an immense effect on the quality of your home heating. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples.

Leaks

Your ductwork is likely to develop a leak here or there sooner or later. Ducts, especially rectangular sheet metal ones, expand and contract with the heat of the air moving through them. This flexing and fluctuating will eventually cause small cracks to form in parts of your ducts. One or two small ones aren’t too big of a problem. However, faulty ductwork has the potential to form many more leaks than usual.

The US Department of Energy estimates that forced air heating systems lose between 20 and 30% of their heat on average to leaks in the duct work. That’s almost a third of your system’s heat that is being lost during operation, for which you are still paying. This is where faulty ductwork can have a major effect on your home heating. Even though the USDE makes no distinction between the quality of the ductwork in those statistics, it’s a fair assessment that faulty ductwork is far more prone to more and larger leaks.

Mold

Mold requires darkness and moisture to thrive and spread. If mold were to ever take root in your ducts, it could release spores into the circulation system. These spores can provoke allergy attacks, make you sick, and generally lower your indoor air quality. Normally, ducts are specifically designed to keep moisture out. Faulty ducts, however, are often not sealed properly. This can allow moisture into the ducts, causing mold growth along with a host of other issues. This doesn’t affect the quality of your heating right away, but it will cause the degradation of your ducts.

If you haven’t had your ducts inspected in a while, call Command A/C. Our heating service professionals cover the entire Cypress area.

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Do I Have to Change My Furnace Filter?

Friday, December 5th, 2014

Yes and no. Yes, the furnace filter should be changed once every 1-3 months. No, you don’t have to do it yourself. A professional should always be happy to replace it for you. In order to understand why the filter needs to be replaced, you need to have an understanding of what it actually does. Let’s examine the role of the furnace filter, and what can happen if it isn’t changed frequently enough.

What Does the Filter do?

The furnace filter, often simply called an “air filter” is a woven fiber mesh over a metal frame. This frame is installed in the air return of your furnace, in order to protect it from the dust and debris that is circulated through your home’s ducts. Every time your furnace is turned on, the filter accumulates more and more debris until it eventually becomes clogged.

What Happens when the Filter is clogged?

A furnace filter is designed so that it can catch airborne contaminants without restricting air flow. A clogged filter does the exact opposite, restricting air flow to the point of causing damage to the system. A furnace needs a steady flow of air, not only to keep warming and circulating it, but to help maintain the temperature inside the furnace itself. With that air flow restricted by the clogged filter, the internal temperature of the furnace will increase. Problems associated with this increase in temperature include:

  • Short-Cycling. This is when the furnace control circuit detects an internal temperature above the safety limit. It then shuts down the furnace to prevent a fire. After the furnace has cooled off, it restarts and the cycle repeats all over again. This rapid on/off behavior throughout the day is characteristic of short-cycling.
  • Cracked heat exchanger. The heat exchanger is responsible for venting toxic gases to the exhaust flue, while heating the indoor air that passes over it. The increased heat can cause the heat exchanger to flex and warp much more rapidly. Eventually it can create cracks in the heat exchanger. This can be a fire hazard, as well as allow combustion gases to escape into the house.

If it’s been a while since you’ve had your filter changed, call Command A/C. We provide heating services throughout Cypress.

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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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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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Benefits of a Packaged HVAC System

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

*Command A/C no longer services packaged units. For a full list of our air conditioning services, look here!

If you are considering having a new heater installed this winter in your home, why not take care of getting a new air conditioning system at the same time? You don’t have to bother installing two separate units if you choose one of the high-efficiency packaged HVAC systems available, which combine heater and AC in a single cabinet.

Packaged systems come in a large variety to suit your needs. Some use electricity to power a heat pump, while others combine heat pumps with high-AFUE gas furnaces. There are many combinations with differing levels of heating and cooling efficiency, so chances are good that professional installers will find a unit that will fit your home and budget.

Call Command A/C to inquire about having a packaged HVAC system installed in your home. We can answer all your questions and go through the step-by-step process of picking, sizing, and installing the right packaged system for you.

Advantages of a package HVAC system

  • Heating and cooling in one unit: Of course, the best benefit of a packaged system is that you have an air conditioner and a heater in one. With dual fuel packaged systems, you will never have to worry about the heater losing efficiency in lower temperatures.
  • Space saving: Because package systems are designed to efficiently reside together in the same cabinet, they are built to save as much space as possible. A packaged unit will take up less space in your home than having a separate heater and air conditioner. This is especially useful if you are considering remodeling your home, or if you are building a new one.
  • High energy efficiency: Packaged systems that come with the U.S. government ENERGY STAR® label are at least 15% to 25% more efficient than regular models.
  • Easier service access: Regular maintenance and repairs are easy for professionals to perform if your heating and cooling systems are located inside a single cabinet.

Because of the many models and efficiency ratings of packaged HVAC systems, you will need expert knowledge to help you select the right model to fit your home’s needs. You will also need expertise to size the unit so it will provide you the proper level heating and cooling without overworking or short-cycling. Don’t make the choice on your own, contact heating and cooling specialists before you decide—and then rely on their expertise to install it correctly.

Call our Huntington Beach, CA heating system specialists at Command A/C to find out about your options for packaged HVAC systems. Their training and knowledge will help you find the ideal system to fit your home.

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Is It Time to Get a New Furnace in Long Beach?

Friday, January 10th, 2014

Long Beach has one of the finest winter climates in all of the U.S. Right now, some states are struggling with power outages due to massive ice storms, while Long Beach bathes in clear skies and temperatures in the 70s. However, if you look over the long-term forecast for Southern California, the first few months of the New Year will have some chilly spots that will require you to fire up the ol’ furnace.

And what if that ol’ furnace is too ol’? (Or, old?) If colder weather is on the way, you don’t want to be trapped with a rickety heater ready to collapse at the worst possible time. To get the best heating in Long Beach, CA, it might be time to replace that venerable old heater with a fresh system.

Command A/C can help you with replacement installation if the time is right. Here are some guidelines to help you decide:

The furnace is more than 20 years old

A well-maintained furnace can often make it past the two-decade mark. If yours has, then you’ve gotten a great bargain out of it. However, wear from age is inevitable, no matter the care that goes into the system. Instead of the inconvenience of replacing the old system when it finally fails completely, replace it now.

Your heating bills have started to climb

Your old furnace may still provide you with the level of heat that you want, but that doesn’t mean that it is working well. The stress of age will make the heater strain to reach its target temperature, and this will appear as inflation on your heating bills. If your bills remain high regardless of repairs, it’s best to replace the furnace and start saving money each month.

Repairs have become too frequent

If you have scheduled repairs for your furnace so often that you think it might be more worthwhile to have the technician rent out a spare room, then your furnace is signaling that it’s on its last legs. The repairs will add up until they cost more than a replacement, so get ahead of the problem and take care of the replacement as soon as you can.

Even if it seems clear that you need to have a new furnace installed for your heating in Long Beach, CA, it’s a large step to take. Consult with an Long Beach heating technician to see if replacement is the best plan, and then let the expert guide you toward the best system to install in the former one’s place.

Contact Command A/C for furnace installation done fast and right. We can install gas, propane, and electric furnaces to suit the needs of any home.

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