Is Solar Heating a Possibility in My Home?

March 5th, 2015 by siteadmin

If you need a new heating system for your home, there are many energy efficient units you can choose from. You might choose a new heat pump if you’re looking to replace both your air conditioner and heater. A dual fuel system combines the efficiency of a heat pump with the reliability of a furnace. And today’s furnaces are more efficient than ever.

By far, one of the best ways to save money and protect some of the earth’s most valuable resources is if you decide to switch to solar heating. Many homeowners are not sure whether solar energy is a possibility for their homes. If you’re not ready to go 100% solar, why not test it out by first installing solar for a single portion of your home?

Your home heating and air conditioning system occupies a good percentage of your monthly bills. Solar heating and cooling systems may cut your bills dramatically. And, solar energy is long-lasting and require few repairs. Installing a new solar heating and cooling system is a wise decision for any homeowner, but will it fit into your home?

Solar heating is a possibility in nearly any home, especially when you choose the Lennox SunSource home energy unit. Installation works in much the same way that a standard HVAC installation does. You must have the technician install both an inside and outside unit. Your new heat pump works like a standard air conditioning unit, moving heat from inside of your home to the outside. In the winter, the heat pump runs in reverse, pumping heat from the outside air back into your home.

The technician must also install solar panels outside, usually on the rooftop. These will absorb solar energy and convert it into electricity to power your HVAC unit. Sometimes, these panels will absorb enough energy to power other parts of your home as well. And you can always upgrade to more panels if you want to cut your bills even more. With a Lennox SunSource system, you can even monitor your home energy use from the internet.

As long as you have space for an indoor and outdoor unit, a set of ducts, and room on the rooftop, solar is most likely a possibility. Call Cool Air Mechanical today to upgrade your home and find out about your other options for heating installation in Kennesaw.

Water Heater Repair FAQ: Should I Flush My Tank?

March 4th, 2015 by siteadmin

You may have heard before that you’re supposed to flush your water heater tank every year or so. This is partially true. Your water heater does need regular flushing, although how often the tank is drained depends on a couple of factors. However, this is not a job for average homeowners to take on by themselves. Flushing a tank is a job for professionals only if you want to make sure that everything goes as smoothly as possible.

Talk to the people at Cool Air Mechanical for information about water heaters in Marietta. We can recommend professional services for prevention or to resolve any potential issues.

Many technicians advise that you service your water heater every year. This includes draining the tank to eliminate any sediment buildup. Sediment builds up in the tank as a result of minerals commonly found in the water supply. Over time, these minerals can increase the pressure in the tank to dangerous levels or they may block the pipes. Flushing the tank from time to time gets rid of these minerals and helps keep your tank in good working condition.

However, if you attempt to handle this service on your own, there are a couple of ways it can go wrong. Electrical trouble is perhaps the most jarring of possibilities. You’ll need to make sure that the power is off to the water heater unit before servicing it and that the water is shut off while draining the tank.

There are a few other things that may go wrong with a D-I-Y tank flushing. Flooding is always a possibility. And if you don’t open and shut all of the right valves, you may create a vacuum in the pipes that leads to noisy operation the next time you turn on the hot water. Besides, when you call professionals for the job, you’ll get comprehensive maintenance service for many of the different parts of your unit as well.

Call Cool Air Mechanical today to ask a professional to flush your water heater tank in Marietta. Our technicians will also go over all of the most important components of your system to keep everything running in top shape and can recommend services to improve the quality of your water heater.

Why Won’t the Backup Heat Turn on in My Dual Fuel System?

February 25th, 2015 by siteadmin

A dual fuel hybrid system offers you the ultimate in heating power and energy savings. These systems combine the energy efficiency of a heat pump with the power and reliability of a gas furnace. For most of the days that you need heat, your heat pump will be the primary form of heating. This system also doubles as an air conditioner, moving heat out of the home in the summer and into the home in the winter. This is an efficient heating system because moving heat around uses less energy than generating it. But when outside temperatures dip too low, your furnace should kick in.

Not feeling any heat in your home? Check out our guide to find out why the backup heat is failing, and call the friendly technicians at Cool Air Mechanical for heating repair in Alpharetta.

Thermostat Programming

When the technician installs your dual fuel system, a thermostat must be set to recognize when the furnace is needed. If the programming is faulty, or if the thermostat has encountered some wiring issues, the backup heat may never turn on. Be sure to call on experts for installation and maintenance to prevent this from happening.

Furnace Trouble

Of course, it may just be that your furnace is not functioning properly at all. If your furnace won’t turn on or if it won’t stay on, it could be due to a safety switch that keeps it from operating if there is a potential for leaks. Or it may be a broken blower fan, burner trouble, or ignition failure. For your safety, be sure to leave any of these repairs in the hands of professionals.

No Need

Perhaps the reason your backup heat has not kicked in is because there is no need for it to switch over. If your outdoor unit is still running in very cool weather, don’t be alarmed. The balance point for a dual fuel system is relatively low. If you still don’t feel any heat, you may have a problem with your heat pump. Try switching over to cooling mode. If this doesn’t work, the heat pump is likely the culprit.

Call the experts at Cool Air Mechanical for quality heating services in Alpharetta.

Contaminants Sometimes Found in Air Ducts

February 18th, 2015 by siteadmin

The first home HVAC system air filters were actually designed to keep particles out of the air handler of the heating and air conditioning equipment. If large particles were to move from the air in your home into the blower fan, it could hinder performance, causing the fan to slow down and potentially jamming the motor. Dust can also clog the burners of a furnace or keep the air conditioning coils from absorbing heat effectively.

Just like the air filter in your car, the air filter in your air conditioning and heating system protects the parts of your unit from damage. But today’s filters serve a second purpose, eliminating unsafe particles from the air that you breathe. Because air cycles frequently through the ducts, it’s important to have some form of defense against pollutants that could aggravate allergies and irritate the lungs.

But a standard air filter doesn’t guarantee that all of the contaminants that could enter the ducts are deterred. In fact, most home air filters are ineffective at removing even the most common home contaminants, such as mold spores, which could then move into the ducts. Many of these contaminants stay dormant in the ducts for a while, infiltrating the home from time to time and irritating household members’ allergies and other respiratory conditions.

The following contaminants may be contained within your duct system. Experts recommend scheduling duct cleaning once a year in some cases, or as often as your technician recommends it.

  • Dust mites: Dust mites thrive in warm, humid areas, and the ductwork may be a perfect location. As one of the most common allergens found in homes, dust mites can irritate those with allergies and may even trigger asthma in children.
  • Pet Dander: You may not have a pet in your home due to your allergies, but what about the homeowners who came before you? Duct cleaning is especially important for people with severe allergies, especially if they seem to act up often.
  • Bacteria: There could be some harmful bacteria present in the ducts that could make family members ill, particularly those with immune disorders.
  • Mold: Finally, mold survives on wet surfaces, like the indoor air handler of your air conditioning system, and could spread to the ducts.

Get in touch with the team at Cool Air Mechanical and find out how you can benefit from duct cleaning with a trained professional in Duluth. Call us today to schedule an appointment.

How Rust Can Develop on a Furnace

February 16th, 2015 by Stephen Andrews

Rust on your furnace is akin to a jet engine on a car: it just shouldn’t be there. In fact, it’s not good to have rust on a boiler, and that’s a system that uses water to heat. Rust on your Atlanta furnace means that there is a moisture problem somewhere, and once rust starts, it’s very hard to stop it. If you see rust on your furnace, even a small spot, it’s time to call your technician from Cool Air Mechanical and schedule an appointment.

How It Starts

There are a few ways in which rust can start to develop on your furnace. The first way is from the improper ventilation of the water vapor created during combustion. The way it happens is this: the toxic byproducts created during the combustion process enter the inside of the heat exchanger from the bottom and make their way to the top of the exchanger where they exit via the flue. As the vapors travel, they cool, and condensation is created. If your furnace isn’t vented properly, this condensation can linger on the metal of your heat exchanger and flue, and rust develops.

A second way rust can develop is if you have a combination furnace and air conditioner HVAC. With these kinds of units, the air conditioner evaporator sits on top of the furnace; sometimes condensation that develops while the air conditioner cycles drips down and lands on the furnace components, and rust develops.

The last way rust can develop on your furnace is via faulty ductwork. Faulty ductwork can allows excess moisture to enter, and this excess water can run down the ductwork to your furnace. Improperly installed ductwork can also allow rain water in, which will also run down to your furnace.

Sometimes if the rust is located in a specific area and the amount of rust is small, there is a chance that particular spot can be remediated. Unfortunately, if you have excessive rust on your furnace, you may need to consider replacement. Get ahead of even the smallest amount of rust by scheduling a repair appointment for your furnace in Atlanta.

Some of the Unusual Movies Released for Valentine’s Day

February 14th, 2015 by Stephen Andrews

Hollywood has always tried to match movies up to the seasons to draw droves of viewers to the theaters: October is packed with fright-offerings, while the winter holidays skew toward warm and pleasing family films (as well as Oscar hopefuls). Valentine’s Day falls in an odd spot when it comes to the movie release calendar, however, since February tends to be a slower time for the film industry. The studios are as likely to slot strange movies that don’t fit anywhere else in their annual schedules into the Valentine’s Day weekend as they are films with powerful romantic appeal.

So, while the second weekend of February has featured hugely successful romantic comedies like Hitch, The Wedding Singer, and (of course) Valentine’s Day, some truly weird choices have debuted in this weekend as well. And a few have even gone on to tremendous success despite the bizarre match with the holiday. Here are a couple of the odder Valentine’s Day movie releases:

  • Dracula (1931): Yes, this Halloween perennial and the start of Universal Studio’s Classic Monsters actually came out on Valentine’s Day! But perhaps this makes some sense, as the Dracula legend has often received a “doomed lover” approach in the many years since Bela Lugosi made the aristocratic vampire a screen icon.
  • The Silence of the Lambs (1991): Does any film seem less appropriate for Valentine’s Day than this unnerving and sometimes very violent psychological thriller? What’s even more astonishing than the film’s release date is that The Silence of the Lambs eventually nabbed the Oscar for Best Picture, an almost unheard of occurrence for a movie released so early in the year.
  • Daredevil (2003): This Marvel comic adaptation featuring Ben Affleck as a blind superhero does contain a romantic subplot, but the stronger connection to Valentine’s Day may just be that Daredevil wears a bright red costume.
  • A Good Day to Die Hard (2013): The least successful of the Die Hard film franchise, this is an excellent example of a studio dropping a film into a weekend where it doesn’t fit in the hopes that it works as counter-programming. (It didn’t.)
  • Wayne’s World (1992): Now here is an example of counter-programming that clicked with audiences. This comedy based on a Saturday Night Live sketch turned into one of that year’s biggest hits and spawned a sequel.

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day with a trip to the movie theater, or you have your own special plans, everyone here at [(site_name)] hopes you and your loved ones have a wonderful weekend.

How Long Can I Delay Heating Repair?

February 4th, 2015 by Stephen Andrews

To be honest, if you think that your heating system needs repair, you shouldn’t delay it at all. The longer you delay heating repair for a malfunctioning system, the more damage you’re likely to cause. In some cases, waiting to address a heating system’s problem can lead to a complete breakdown. Instead of delaying heating repair because you don’t want to deal with it, you should adopt practices that lessen the frequency of heating issues. Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to keep your system healthy, and reduce the frequency of heating repairs.

Schedule Annual Maintenance

The most important thing you can do to preserve the health of your heating system is to schedule annual preventive maintenance. Having your heating system checked out at least once a year, regardless of whether or not it is having issues, will help ensure that your system is in top physical condition. Any parts that are starting to malfunction can be identified and replaced before they start causing major issues. This kind of maintenance is so helpful, in fact, that many warranties on heating systems require it in order to stay valid. So, if you really want to keep your heating system healthy, don’t wait for it to start showing signs of distress. Schedule preventive maintenance at least once a year.

Don’t Ignore Problems

Not all issues with heating systems will provide any sort of warning sign, but many of them do. If you have reason to believe that your heating system isn’t working properly, schedule a maintenance call immediately. Strange noises coming from the heating system are very common indicators of a problem, as well as uneven heating across the house and higher heating bills. Though having to deal with a maintenance call may be annoying, ignoring the problem for any length of time only increases the likelihood of the problem developing into something much more damaging and expensive. Don’t delay, call a professional as soon as you notice unusual behavior from your system.

If you need heating repair, schedule an appointment with Cool Air Mechanical today. We provide professional heating repair services in the Marietta area.

Commercial HVAC Trouble: When It’s the Thermostat’s Fault

January 30th, 2015 by siteadmin

When your commercial HVAC system isn’t working properly, you’re most likely going to get an earful from clients, customers, tenants, and/or employees. These people expect you to provide them with enough cooling or heating power to stay comfortable while on your property, whether it’s for 8 hours at a time or for a quick shopping trip. So if you want to improve work morale and keep clients and customers returning, you need to fix your unit quickly.

Fixing a large commercial unit may be an ordeal, especially if no one has looked at your commercial unit in quite some time. Because some business owners or managers may be concerned about the cost, they often try to look into the situation themselves. You should keep in mind, however, that repairing a large commercial HVAC system is very difficult—a task that even many residential HVAC technicians prefer not to take on. While most commercial heating and air conditioning problems should be addressed by a technician, there is one thing you should check before calling a professional: the thermostat.

If your thermostat has controlled the temperature in the building proficiently ever since you’ve managed the property, you may not assume that this part could be responsible for any mechanical issues. But it’s best to double- and triple-check the thermostat before calling for backup. Nearly every technician has a story about showing up to a home or business only to find that a child has messed with the thermostat settings or that it was never turned on in the first place.

Ask yourself the following questions while examining your thermostat:

  • Is the thermostat switched into the right mode? Is it set on “heating” or “cooling” as needed?
  • Is there a program in place that may have shut off the heating unit for the time being?
  • Is the thermostat set to today’s date and time? Many thermostats are programmed to turn on and off at certain times of day.
  • Are you locked out of the thermostat? Check your manufacturer’s guide to learn how to re-access the controls.

Sometimes, the settings on the thermostat are at fault, but other times a thermostat is malfunctioning due to improper wiring or a faulty sensor. In most circumstances, you’ll have to call in a professional for repairs.

Contact Cool Air Mechanical when you’re in need of commercial HVAC repair service, especially if changing the settings is not enough. Call us today!

What Does Rusty Discoloration in My Hot Water Mean?

January 29th, 2015 by Stephen Andrews

Discoloration in your water is never a good sign under any circumstances. Brown or red water coming out of your faucets means that there is rust present somewhere in your plumbing. Where that rust is located will determine how much trouble your system is in and what kinds of repairs will be required. If you’re only experiencing discolored water when you turn on the hot water, then it’s a good bet that the issue is in your hot water heater. Let’s take a look at the primary reasons your water heater would be rusting, both tank and tankless.

Storage Tank Water Heaters

Storage tank water heaters are actually very susceptible to rust, due to their constant storage of large amounts of water. A lot of water heaters possess a lining around the inside of the tank, usually made of glass, to ward off rust. Still, even that lining will eventually develop cracks and allow rust to start eating away at the tank itself. This is a very big problem, as a rusted out water tank can leak and eventually rupture, causing large amounts of water damage to the surrounding area. In order to address this weakness to rust, all water heaters have one or more sacrificial anode rods.

A sacrificial anode rod is a long metal rod that is inserted into the water heater tank. This rod actually attracts rust to itself, sparing the rest of the tank. Hence the “sacrificial” part of its name. Unfortunately, the anode rod will eventually become so corroded that it can no longer do its job. That’s when the rest of the tank starts rusting. If you catch rust in your water, you should call a professional to examine your water heater. Depending on how advanced the rust is, you may need to only replace the anode rod.

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters don’t have to worry about rust resulting from storing large amounts of water. Unfortunately, they still have water flowing through them all the time, and can still rust. If your tankless water heater develops rust, it will most likely be on the heat exchanger. When this happens, the only solution is usually to replace the entire water heater. However, you should have a professional take a look at your water heater before making any decisions.

If you have discolored water, call Cool Air Mechanical. We provide water heater repair services throughout Alpharetta, GA.

3 Common Signs That You Need Your Heating Repaired

January 20th, 2015 by Stephen Andrews

Though there are many different kinds of heating systems, each with their own unique construction and operation, there are still common problems that affect all of them. These common problems each give out signs and indications when they happen, helping the homeowner identify and react to them. In an effort to expand peoples’ knowledge of these common issues, we’re going to examine 3 of the most common signs that you need your heating repaired. If you notice any of these signs with your heating system, it’s a good idea to call a professional as soon as possible.

Strange Noises

When you first install a new heating system, every noise is going to seem strange. Once you get used to it, however, you’d be surprised how accurately you can pick out sounds that aren’t part of your heater’s normal operation. These sounds vary from system to system, and the severity of the problems they represent vary, as well. However, it’s always better to be safe and call a professional when you hear squealing, grinding, rumbling, or any other kind of unusual noise coming from your heater.

Failure to Start

This one is pretty obvious, but still worth mentioning. If your heater fails to start, there could be any number of things wrong with it. If you have a standing pilot light, you should definitely check to see if it’s still lit. If it isn’t, you may simply need to re-light it to fix the problem. If you don’t have a pilot light, it’s worth checking to see if you notice any other odd behaviors that might accompany your heater’s failure to start. Regardless, a sign like this usually indicates an issue that can only be solved by a professional.

Low Heating Capacity

This one is a bit harder to detect, depending on the situation. Still, once you notice, it can be quite annoying. Low heating capacity is usually a sign that your system is either having a fuel issue or that there is a break in the delivery system. If you notice that your heater suddenly doesn’t seem to be able to heat as well, call a professional to have a look at it. Don’t ignore it! If you do, it will only get worse.

If you are having problems with your heating system, call Cool Air Mechanical to schedule an appointment with us. We provide professional heating repair service throughout the Duluth area.