The Dangers Of Not Replacing Your Furnace Filters

Furnaces are very important, especially for those who live in very cold areas. Changing the filter in the furnace is critical for the appliance to work efficiently. Not replacing the furnace filter can cause a lot of problems. Here are some reasons why changing out the filter regularly is so important.

Efficient Heating

High energy bills can be caused by a dirty filter. Furnace filters filter the air that enters the appliance. These filters prevent particles, dust, allergens, and other items from entering the furnace and damaging it, and then from being circulated into the air in the home. Replacing the filter regularly can help furnaces run more efficiently. This is because when the filter is full or clogged with debris, the furnace has to work harder to pull air into the system. The increased force causes an increase in energy used by the furnace to work properly, and still produce the wanted heat. Replacing the filter at least once a year is recommended, but most professionals suggest changing it even more often than that. For help with changing a furnace filter, make sure to contact a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ professional.

Air Quality

One of the most dangerous consequences of not changing an air filter is the polluted air that is allowed to circulate in the home. Dirty filters not only obstruct the amount of air that is able to flow into the furnace, but they also allow the particles, allergens, dust, and other items, to be released into the furnace and then circulated with the heated air. Therefore, an old filter greatly reduces the amount of clean air in a home. A clean filter is very important for those who struggle with allergies, asthma, or other respiratory problems. Those who live in highly polluted cities may also find themselves struggling with some respiratory problems if they haven’t changed their filter recently.

Operating Problems

Along with bad air quality, there are some dangerous operating problems that can be the result of not changing the furnace filter. One of the biggest of these problems includes the possibility of the furnace overheating. This is usually caused by the furnace having to work extra hard to pull air in through the obstructed filter, and then overheating from the exertion. Any overheated appliance runs the risk of starting a fire or causing major problems, but furnaces are especially prone to some of these issues. Other problems can include appliance malfunction, inefficiency, and even complete failure. Making sure the filter is changed regularly in the furnace can help keep homes and loved ones safe.

Not changing the furnace filter can be dangerous. Furnaces are very important, but if they aren’t maintained correctly they can become hazardous, and this can certainly be the case if the filter inside is old. Keeping the furnace filter clean can change how efficient the furnace is, and even lower utility bills. It can also prevent operating problems, which can lead to fires or other serious issues. A clean filter can filter air better, and prevent the circulation of dirt, allergens, or dust in the home. Making sure the furnace filter is changed regularly can prevent danger and the exacerbation of health problems.

Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

How To Tell If Your Furnace Is Dying

  1. How old is your furnace?

The average life expectancy of furnaces in homes today is between 16 and 20 years. If your furnace is close to this age or older, you should begin shopping. Don’t wait for an emergency never a time to make your most informed decision. It’s wiser to replace a furnace as a planned home improvement rather than as a panic replacement when your furnace conks out in the middle of winter. By the way, if your furnace has a pilot light, it is almost certainly 25 years or older.

 

  1. Are your utility bills rising?

Furnaces often lose efficiency as they age, especially if they have not been properly maintained. Your utility bills rise because your furnace may run longer to provide the same amount of heat.

 

  1. Have you been repairing the furnace lately?

It doesn’t take long to spend a significant amount of money just to keep the old furnace running. Another downside to an older furnace: As it ages, replacement parts get harder to find. While you’re waiting for parts, your house could be getting more and more uncomfortable.

 

  1. Are you comfortable?

Are some rooms are too cold while others are too hot? Are you constantly adjusting the thermostat to get a good supply of heat? Your furnace may have lost its ability to properly distribute the air to keep you comfortable.

 

  1. Is your burner flame yellow instead of blue?

A yellow or flickering flame may be a sign that the furnace is creating poisonous carbon. Other possible signs of carbon monoxide:

  • Streaks of soot around the furnace;
  • Absence of an upward draft in your chimney;
  • Excess moisture found on windows, walls, or other cold surfaces;
  • Excessive rusting on flue pipes, other pipe connections, or appliance jacks;
  • A small amount of water leaking from the base of the chimney, vent, or flue pipe;
  • Rust can be seen on the vent pipe from the outside.

 

  1. Does your furnace make strange noises?

Aging furnaces often make some strange noises toward the end of their life banging, popping, rattling, or squealing. Or you may you hear the furnace blower running excessively, turning off and on frequently, or blowing cold air sometimes. These may mean your furnace needs to be replaced.

 

  1. How do you and your family feel?

As furnaces age, they can develop cracks in the heat exchanger. Carbon monoxide, if present, could leak into your home undetected. Signs may be frequent headaches, a burning feeling in nose or eyes, nausea, disorientation, flu-like symptoms. If you experience any of these symptoms, air out your house, open a window to the furnace room and immediately call a gas service technician.

  1. Is your house dry or dusty?

Old furnaces often fail to moisturize and clean the air in your home. Your house air may feel stuffy or stale, or your family may suffer from allergies to airborne dust, mold, pollen, viruses or dander, dry nose, dry throat, or dry skin. Other signs may be frequent dust accumulation, static shocks, drooping plants, furniture cracking and musical instruments that don’t stay in tune. Your old furnace may not be able to provide you with the comfort you and your family may want.

Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

How To Use Your Senses To Care For Your HVAC

 Change Your Filter Regularly

This is probably the easiest and one of the most important regular maintenance items a New Jersey homeowner can perform. Clean filters allow air to circulate through your furnace efficiently and prolong the life of your system. Be sure to check the furnace and filter manufacturers’ recommendations on the frequency of filter changes.

This will also help improve your overall indoor air quality in your home. Furnace filter changes can reduce your energy bill by 5 to 15 percent as well.

Understand Your System and Recommended Maintenance

Although most furnaces in the United States are natural gas or electric, many other heating systems such as propane, geothermal, and heat pump are now available.

Understand what kind of system provides your home with its heat, and learn how that particular system needs to be maintained. Some systems may not require any maintenance while more common systems like natural gas heating need regular inspections and tune-up to operate efficiently and dependably.

 Think Safety First

If you decide to perform any other maintenance tasks beyond basic filter changes, be sure you put safety first. Turn off the power to your furnace before you begin to take things apart to protect yourself from getting injured. Consider hiring a Green Apple professional to help with any inspection, cleaning, tune-ups, or repairs that are more complicated or you are uncomfortable trying yourself.

 Use Your Senses

It’s easy to pass by your furnace every day and not notice it. Take the time to look at your overall system, especially in the fall, to see if you notice anything obviously amiss.

First, if you detect the odor of rotten eggs, call your utility company immediately. That can signify a gas leak, which can be extremely dangerous in your home.

Second, be sure the venting pipe is sitting at the correct angle and is secure. You should check to be sure all tubes are fastened as well. Listen for any unusual sounds or anything else out of the ordinary.

 Clean Drainage Tube

If you are running a natural gas or propane furnace, it will create some water as a by-product. Although some moisture becomes steam, you’ll also have some water drain out into a drip pan.

Be sure this drainage tube remains clean and clear. Backed up water can damage your flame sensor. You can use compressed air to clear the tube as well as white vinegar to reduce any residual.

 Get Tidy

Dirt and dust can hamper the performance of your furnace, so regular cleaning should be part of your annual maintenance. Although you can clean around your unit easily, be careful if you try to clean the inside of your furnace.

Some components are very sensitive and can become damaged if you don’t know what you are doing. You can use a soft brush to gently loosen dust before vacuuming or contact one of our Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ professionals to do the job.

 Perform More Thorough Inspections

If you are mechanically inclined, you can continue checking things like your burner flames to be sure they are even and blue. You can check your thermostat wires to be sure they are securely connected. Clean the flame sensor so it can continue to do its job well.

Green apple Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-611-7191

How To Maximize Your Furnace

1. Make Sure the Filter is Clean

The purpose of the furnace filter is to prevent dust and hair from clogging your furnace. But after the filter has been in place for a while, it gets full of debris. Your furnace then has to work harder to pull air through the densely packed filter, which places extra stress on the furnace.

How often you need to change your filter will depend on a lot of things. How often you clean, whether or not you have pets, and recent renovations can all make a difference. A good rule of thumb is to check the filter monthly for debris. If you can see hair and dust on the surface, then replace the filter or wash it if it’s the reusable kind.

2. Use a Programmable Thermostat

It’s still amazing how many people still don’t use programmable thermostats. They are one of the best ways of reducing your monthly gas bill, and they often pay for themselves in one year. They also reduce wear and tear on your furnace.

A simple 5-day/2-day programmable thermostat is not expensive, and it will allow you to set up a schedule for weekdays and weekends that will lower the temperature when you’re away from home or sleeping.

3. Make Sure all Registers are Open and Free of Debris

In order to work efficiently, a furnace needs to be able to freely circulate air around your home. Make sure none of your registers are blocked by furniture or have trapped dust in the cover. Be careful when purchasing decorative registers they look great but can restrict as much as 50% of the airflow.

4. Keep the Area Around the Furnace Clear

Most furnaces are kept in the basement, where we also love to store extra belongings. It’s really important to keep a three to the five-foot area around your furnace completely clear of stored items. This is a safety issue because there is burning gas in the furnace. But it also helps the furnace run smoother because air can circulate freely.

5. Curtains are a Great Way to Save Energy

Strategically using your curtains can make a noticeable difference in your energy bill. By closing them at night, you can prevent heat loss to the cold outdoors.

Opening them in the day on the south or west-facing windows allows warm sunshine to enter and heat the inside of your home, just like with a car left in a parking lot. On any north windows, try to keep them closed, even during the day.

6. Get Regular Furnace Tune-Ups

Make sure you have your furnace inspected and tuned up every year to ensure its running at peak efficiency. One faulty part can place strain on the rest of the system and can lead to sudden breakdowns.

7. Use Ceiling Fans

It may sound odd to use a fan in the winter, but they can help even out the overall warmth of your air. Heat naturally rises and tends to collect near the ceiling. Running your ceiling fan on low to push the hot air down to the floor works especially well in rooms with vaulted ceilings.

8. Bake More in the Winter Months

Give your furnace a break by using the oven more. It will heat the entire kitchen area and may help heat your entire ground floor. There are other benefits too: not only will you feel better with a nice home-cooked meal, but your house will also smell great.

9. Decorative Insulation

Carpeting and area rugs on floors help insulate against drafts. They also feel great underfoot, help with soundproofing, and make us feel warmer because they’re so cozy looking.

10. Keep a Good Humidity Level

Most people notice that the air in our homes tends to be really dry in winter. It’s not only drying on skin and throats, but it can make us feel colder than we really are. Using a humidifier to bring your humidity level up to about 40% will help transfer heat better. You can lower the setting on the thermostat and not notice it. More humidity is also better for wood floors and furniture and can help prevent asthma and allergy attacks.

11. Make Sure Your Garage Door is Sealed

The garage is one of the biggest culprits of energy loss in the modern home. Make sure the garage door is touching all the way down and there aren’t any drafts around the sides are top.
By following these tips, you’ll keep your furnace running smoothly all winter long. You’ll also stay cozy and warm for less money.

Green Apple Plumbing Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

Experiencing Problems With Your Water Pressure?

 YOU HAVE LOW WATER PRESSURE

When your water doesn’t flow forcefully, it’s usually time to call a Green Apple plumber to look at the internal workings of your plumbing.

When it is a faucet in one bathroom, it could be something as simple as a clogged aerator. You can address this by unscrewing the aerator and cleaning out the sediment. This is usually done with a little scrubbing or a vinegar soak.

If cleaning out an aerator doesn’t do the trick or if the low pressure is in more than one sink, you may have a much more significant problem lurking beneath the surface. Low pressure is often related to cracked or broken pipes either in the walls or under the foundation of your home. These areas will leak every time you use any water in your home, creating a growing problem that can do major damage to your home.

If you’re experiencing low pressure that’s not located in a singular fixture, it’s time to call a Green Apple plumber and ask for immediate service.

YOUR DRAINS WON’T DRAIN

Clogs are common in plumbing, from tubs and toilets to faucets indoor and out. Some of these clogs can be undone with a plunger and a little muscle. But if you can’t unclog them after a little plunger work, or if there’s a clog that consistently backs up, you should call a plumber.

Plumbers can use special tools like cameras that can look deeper into pipes for something that may be causing a long-term problem. Hair, grease build-up, roots getting into underground systems and problems with your septic tank are a few possible issues.

Any repeat drain problem is worth a call because you might be facing a serious issue. Even if it’s something small such as a tub that clogs each time you give your dog a bath it can turn into a bigger concern if it happens repeatedly. You can perform remedies at home, but many times you’re simply delaying a problem or treating a symptom and allowing an underlying problem to fester.

 YOUR FAUCETS WON’T STOP DRIPPING

If your shower is dripping only 10 times a minute, you’re paying for an additional 500 gallons of water each year

Maybe you’ve been planning to fix that dripping sink as soon as you have the time. Before you know it, months pass and the problem persists. Sometimes a drip can be a quick fix with a little tightening, some plumbers’ tape or a new bracket, but that’s not always the case. A steady drip may come from a crack in a pipe or an element that’s installed incorrectly. Pressure buildups or other concerns may also play a role.

For these small issues, it’s wise to call a Green Apple plumber when you can’t fix it or when you have a few things on your to-do list. Having a plumber check your leaks also gives you an opportunity to ask questions or receive suggestions for upcoming remodeling and other projects. Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and experience. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

Don’t Let Your furnace Go Unregulated

The work a furnace does goes largely unnoticed. That is until it stops in the middle of a cold day. When the air quickly becomes frigid in your house, you’ll be calling a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical technician. If you take notice of your furnace now and do the necessary things to keep it running well, chances are that it won’t leave your house cold on a winter’s day.

Thermostat Check

The thermostat tells your furnace what to do. Bumping up the temperature on your thermostat should make a marked difference. But if nothing happens, then you might have a bad thermostat on your hands. This is a good thing to check before changing seasons bring cooler air and heat becomes a necessity.

Turn off the Power

Before you attempt any hands-on furnace maintenance, the power to your furnace should be turned off. There is a switch right by your unit that looks just like a light switch. Switch it to “off” and the power will be cut to the unit. This is very important if you are doing anything that requires touching the furnace itself. You are dealing with gas and electricity, both of which can be volatile.

Replace the Filter

Replacing the filter is a simple task that should be done every one to three months.

Often, a clogged filter is the reason a furnace isn’t operating efficiently. It’s similar to breathing through a straw. Air can’t be pulled through the furnace properly, which doesn’t allow heat to travel well from the furnace to your living space. If not addressed, it can ultimately lead to overheating and shut down. A clogged filter also wears out the blower motor.

Clear Vents

Sometimes, the look of a room is taken into account more than airflow. But when furniture covers up vents, it can cause problems similar to a clogged air filter. Even drapes can get in the way of air coming out of the vents. This could be the reason why certain rooms in your house are not as warm as they should be. Unblock air vents by moving obstructing furniture and drapes.

Clean Return Vents

Ever notice how the return air vents in your house get covered in dust? This clogs up the heating system. Take a vacuum cleaner and clean the vent. Then remove the vent and clean as much as you can reach with a vacuum brush attachment.

Maintenance by the Professionals

In addition to the tips above, there is much more furnace maintenance that can be done by a Green Apple professional HVAC company. Cleaning the blower and burners will make your system more efficient. A heating company can also check for harmful carbon dioxide gasses that may be leaking into your living space.

Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

All The Reasons You Need An Annual Furnace Inspection

Every year at about this time, you probably receive several direct mail pieces from different New Jersey-area heating and cooling companies telling you to schedule a furnace tune-up.

But what many companies fail to tell you (and the reason most of those offers are ignored) is exactly why furnace maintenance is essential.

At Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical, we won’t sell you something you don’t need. So here is a list of the reasons an annual tune-up is so important to the efficiency of your furnace and the safety of your home.

Ensures proper airflow
During the furnace tune-up, the heating technician will check your heating system to ensure it is receiving the proper airflow. Restricted or limited airflow places an unnecessary strain on your furnace that can lead to increased repairs and a shortened lifespan.

Keeps you safe
Furnaces burn fuel to produce heat. This combustion process must be precise to maintain efficiency and safety. Even a small problem can lead to gas leaking into your home or dangerous carbon monoxide levels. Don’t take a chance with the health and safety of you and your family.

Reduces repairs
Every winter, we receive calls from New Jersey-area residents with heating problems that could have been easily prevented with regular maintenance. A furnace tune-up not only includes cleaning that keeps your furnace running efficiently, but it also catches small problems before they turn into major repairs.

Saves Time
Getting a furnace tune-up now, before the weather is cold, is much more convenient than waiting for a repairman during the winter in a cold home without heat. It is also much cheaper.

Improves energy efficiency
A furnace tune-up should include the cleaning and inspection of the furnace burner and heat exchanger. In addition to ensuring safe operation, this will keep your furnace running efficiently all winter.

Maintains manufacturer’s warranty
If your heater is under a manufacturer’s warranty, it is especially important for you to get an annual furnace tune-up. Most manufacturers stipulate that their warranty becomes void if the heater is not regularly maintained. A furnace tune-up can satisfy that requirement and maintain your warranty.

Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

Treat Your Plumbing Better In 2020

Happy 2020 Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical customers! If you haven’t already it’s time to start making your soon to be broken resolutions now.

But not all resolutions were made to be broken! We think part of everyone’s resolutions should be initiatives to take better care of yourself, your family and friends and your home. This includes your plumbing too. So what can you do to ensure your plumbing functions better this year? We’ve got a few of our crew together and we started to brainstorm a list of easy ways to avoid a plumbing mishap. Here is what we were able to come up with:

Be Kind To Your Garbage Disposal:

Don’t just throw everything from your plate at your disposal. Learn what can go into your garbage disposal and what you can’t.  Also, be sure to run water whenever you use your disposal to eliminate waste buildup that causes unwelcome odors in the house.

Quit Treating Your Toilet Like A Trashcan:

Your toilet isn’t a dumpster. Flushing things such as Q-Tips, hair, tissues, wet wipes, plastic medication containers should not be tossed in the toilet to be flushed later. There are bathroom trashcans for a reason!

Cut Down On Your Water Usage:

It’s easy to scale back on how much water you use on a daily basis. Even simple adjustments such as turning the water off when brushing teeth can save as many at 3,000 gallons of water. You’ll suddenly notice that your wallet grew a few inches at the end of each month.

Give Your Bathroom A Different Style:

It’s nice to change your bathroom’s look a little bit. Switching up the decor can be refreshing to everyone in your house and guests that regularly come over. Even small updates such as replacing faucets or installing cabinets can have a significant impact on your bathroom’s utility and value. However, larger jobs are most likely best left to the professionals at Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ.

Warm Up Your Pipes For The Winter:

Don’t let your pipes get beat up in the winter by cold temperatures. Burst pipes can be an extreme inconvenience and a very expensive fix. Make sure they’re properly installed to avoid such disasters.

Hopefully, this list gives you some insight on how you can take better care of your home in the New Year. Follow this advice and you should have minimal plumbing problems around your house. However, if you’re ever in a pinch and need the help of a professional plumber give us a call here at Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ. Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

Happy New Year From Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ!

Everyone here at Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ would like to wish all of our loyal customers a very happy and healthy New Year! We look forward to taking care of all your HVAC and plumbing needs in 2020.

Prepare Your Furnace For 2020

Increase Ventilation

If you’ve taken steps to seal air leaks or insulate your attic and foundation, you’re already one step ahead of many homeowners. Tightening your home’s building envelope translates to savings on your household’s energy consumption, but you might find that this envelope tightening also limits the airflow in your home.

Fortunately, we have an easy solution for keeping your home’s air supply fresh and clean. Our energy-recovery ventilators work with your home’s HVAC system to pull in the fresh air and flush out stale air on a continual cycle. With one of these devices, you’ll never have to worry about breathing in yesterday’s air again. Since energy-recovery ventilators precondition the incoming air, they also improve your HVAC system’s energy efficiency and have a minimal impact on your utility bill.

Add Zoning Systems

Many New Jersey homeowners struggle with keeping the temperature comfortable throughout the house. If your home has more than one level or you have family members with strong temperature-related preferences, you’ll find that keeping everyone comfortable is an especially tall order.

If this scenario sounds familiar, adding zoning systems to your home. Our heating and cooling experts install dampers in your HVAC system’s ductwork and connect them to a series of electrical sensors. You can then program a different temperature for each zone, ensuring that the kitchen, family room, and bedrooms will always be perfectly comfortable. We’ll walk you through the smart thermostat options that give you the greatest or most streamlined control over your new zoning systems.

Upgrade Your HVAC System

If your HVAC system is reaching the end of its lifespan, which is generally 10 to 15 years for air conditioners and 15 to 20 years for furnaces, start thinking about an upgrade. While a new HVAC system is a big investment, it offers a range of benefits for your home and family.

When you start looking for a new HVAC system, ask our team about Energy Star–certified heating and cooling options. These systems offer superior energy efficiency and will help you lower your utility bill every month.

Our team can also introduce you to the latest HVAC tech innovations, such as variable-speed blowers. Available with both heating and cooling systems, these blowers operate at a low level for most of the day and run at a higher level only when necessary. This feature results in improved energy efficiency and better comfort for your family.

Plan Ahead

If you’ve made any New Year’s resolutions before, you know that creating a plan and sticking to that plan are the keys to success. When working with your HVAC system, planning ahead can be especially beneficial.

Scheduling preventive maintenance before the heating or cooling season starts lowers the chance that your HVAC system will have a major breakdown at the peak of summer or winter. Similarly, investing in a new furnace, air conditioner, or heat pump during the off-season can mean better prices, a more convenient installation schedule, and extra time to consider the best option for your family.

In 2020, resolve to stay one step ahead of your HVAC system, and you’ll benefit from comfort, budget, and peace of mind. Of course, if the unexpected happens or if you need emergency repairs, our experienced HVAC technicians are always a phone call away. Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the NJ area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priority. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC or plumbing needs call toll-free @888-315-5564