Heating Tape For your Plumbing Pipes

Apply Heating Tape

Heating tape works like an electric blanket for pipes, supplying heat directly to the pipe to keep it warm during cold spells. This can be a good solution for short sections of pipe that are at high risk for freezing and are easily accessible so you can install the tape and can monitor it for problems.

There are two types of heating tape. One type turns on and off by itself when it senses heat is needed. The other type must be plugged in when the heat is needed and unplugged when not in use; it does not have an automatic or manual on/off switch. Much like a space heater, these products can be dangerous, so you must follow the product’s direction and safety procedures exactly.

 Add Extra Insulation

Pipes that are located in areas that do not have enough insulation such as basements or attics, may need extra insulation to keep from freezing. Pipes in basements or attics are not the only ones that may not be properly insulated from the cold. If you have had a problem with pipes freezing anywhere in your home, extra insulation could be the cure.

Pipes can be fitted with foam rubber or fiberglass sleeves to help decrease the chances of freezing. This can be an easy solution for pipes that are exposed but can get expensive if walls, floors, or ceilings have to be opened in order to properly insulate the pipe. Additional insulation can also be added to walls and ceilings to keep the pipes warm.

Insulation can help keep a pipe closer to the temperature of the water inside the pipe, but it does not add heat to the pipe and will not prevent freezing if the pipe is exposed to prolonged freezing temperatures. 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

4 Harmful Things You Are Doing To Your Plumbing

1. Leaving hoses connected during cold weather.

This is a classic plumbing error that one must assume is caused most often by thoughtlessness. Unlike holiday lights, hoses can cause damage when left out all year: they can lead to freezing of the outdoor faucet or its water supply pipe. It’s terrible for your hose, too.

2. Using vent pipes for anything other than venting.

This one falls in the “Why not? I’ll tell you ‘why not’!” category. There are reports of homeowners running things like TV cables down the plumbing pipes that come up through their roofs. It seems like a tempting solution to getting into the house, but vent pipes aren’t just there for their bad looks. They not only provide air to drains inside the house, to prevent a suction effect that inhibits drainage; they also get rid of sewer gases that come up from the city’s sewer main. If you cut a hole in your vent inside the house to run a cable through, you’re tapping into an endless supply of your neighborhood’s sewer air.

3. Using too much drain cleaner.

When used extremely carefully, drain cleaners can be somewhat effective for drains. When used with abandon, they can corrode some drain materials, and they can actually make clogs worse. It’s also not very nice for the plumber who eventually comes out to clear that clog.

4. Pouring chemicals (and other bad stuff) into a septic system.

If you’re used to living with a “private” sewage system, you probably know how to take care of it. But if you just bought a house with septic, or maybe you’re renting a rural cottage for the summer, you might not think twice about using chemicals like drain cleaner, chlorine bleach, paint, and even anti-bacterial soaps. These chemicals kill the essential waste-eating bacteria in the septic tank … and you can guess the result. 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

Furnace Replacement Or Repair?

Furnace Replacement or repair? That’s the burning question!

It’s not easy to know whether you should repair or replace your home’s heating system, especially if you’re facing an emergency situation. While there’s no hard-and-fast rule, there are some important considerations to keep in mind as you make your decision.

Age of your system

The average lifespan of a furnace is around 15 to 20 years. If your furnace is near that age, expect to experience more repairs in the near future, which may not be covered by the original warranty or service agreement.

Outdated technology

Technology changes all the time. This is as true for your heating system as it is for your phone. By replacing aging equipment, you’ll be able to take advantage of smart features and increased efficiencies that can save you money on your utility bills.

Cost of repairs

As a good rule of thumb, Consumer Reports recommends replacing a product when repairs exceed 50% of the cost of a new one.* Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ is a great resource for current promotions that could significantly reduce the cost of a new system.

Environmental impact

If you’re concerned with your energy footprint, you may be surprised to know that your heating and cooling system accounts for about 50 percent of your home’s energy use. Upgrading to new energy star certified equipment ensures your units meet or exceed federal standards for energy efficiency.

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 plumbing or HVAC needs call toll-free @888-315-5564

Why You Should Keep You Curtains & Garage Closed

 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.

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.

 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.

 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, your house will smell great.

 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.

 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.

 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

Furnace Safety Tips

As the outside temperature begins to fall, it is important to inspect your furnace to ensure that it is functioning and operating efficiently throughout the winter months. Many things can negatively affect your furnace during the warmer months when you are not using it, which is why it is so important to take the time now to check that everything is working as it should before something goes wrong. According to the National Fire Asscioation heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths, and half of these fires occur in the months of December, January, and February alone.

This does not have to happen to you. Here are seven simple things to check for after you turn on your heater to improve its efficiency and to keep your family safe.

Use Your Senses

When you first turn on your furnace, pay special attention to what you smell, feel, and hear.

Smell. Most furnaces give off a burning smell, but it could either be just dust burning off or it could be actual smoke from a fire. If there is a fire, turn the furnace off immediately, extinguish the flames with a home fire extinguisher, then call your local fire emergency services or 911. If it is dust, the smell should diminish after a short period of time. If the smell persists, however, and you are sure there is no fire, then it is a clear sign that your system needs cleaning.

Feel. Slide your hands along the walls of the furnace and the ducts. You should not feel any vibrations. If you do, call a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ technician to help identify the source.

Listen. Does the furnace sound like it should? Does it seem unusually noisy or seem as if it is having a hard time functioning? How is the airflow? As systems age, they need to be properly inspected and tuned-up. Call a certified Green Apple technician to schedule an annual inspection. Never attempt to make any repairs on your own if the issue is internal in your furnace as there is a high probability of inadvertent electrocution.

Check the Filter

 

Dirty filters create stress on your furnace, which can decrease its long-term productivity and increase your home heating costs. If you have a temporary filter, some manufacturers recommend that you change it every 90 days while others recommend changing it every 30 days. Follow the guidelines for your furnace. If your filter needs to be changed monthly, consider a pleated filter that can trap dust and allergens for up to three months. Electronic air-cleaner filters need to be cleaned every month as do permanent filters, which need to be washed and rinsed every month. Finally, always make sure that the filter has a cover over its slot opening so that the return-air system functions properly. Regular filter changes and cleanings are the easiest way to prolong the life of your furnace.

Remove Nearby Flammable Objects

A home’s furnace is often located in a garage or basement near where common household chemicals or other flammable objects such as boxes or gardening supplies are stored. Move these items as well as any other unnecessary debris to a safe distance (at least 3 feet) from the furnace in order to prevent a fire hazard.

Clean the Vents

 

Take the time to clean each vent in each room of your home so that they are better able to distribute heat and to improve indoor air quality by removing built-up dust and allergens.

Check Your Carbon Monoxide Level

 

The CDC reports that each year, more than 400 Americans die from unintentional carbon monoxide poisonings such as from stoves, lanterns, grills, fireplaces, gas ranges, and furnaces. More than 20,000 visit the emergency room and more than 4,000 are hospitalized. This is why it is very important to monitor carbon monoxide levels inside your home, especially when you first turn on your heater.

After your furnace has been running for 10-15 minutes, check your carbon monoxide detector. If the reading is above 30, turn the furnace off and call a certified Green Apple technician right away as there could be a hazardous situation occurring. Open all windows to properly ventilate your home and do not use your furnace again until it has been professionally checked.

Test Your Thermostat

After you have turned on the heat, is your thermostat reading going up? Like many devices, thermostats slow down and can become increasingly inaccurate with age. Check that its readings are correct and that all of its functions are working properly. You might consider replacing it with a programmable thermostat if it seems like your current one is getting old. Programmable thermostats not only reduce stress on your furnace system by turning off when it is not needed, but it also saves you money up to $180 every year in energy costs.

Call a Certified Professional

 

The number one thing you should do every year when you are ready to turn on your heater is to call a Green Apple HVAC professional for a thorough inspection and cleaning. A certified technician from Green Apple will conduct a thorough cleaning plus identify and fix any problems your system may be experiencing. We provide service around the clock and we are happy to give you an exact quote for any issues that need addressing so you know up-front how much it will cost. No matter what kind of system you have, our technicians are fully qualified to provide a wide variety of services to help you maintain your system and ensure that your family is comfortably warm this season.

Preparing for the colder months does not have to be difficult. By following these steps, your furnace system will be safe and ready for whatever weather comes your way. Call us for a thorough and honest inspection as soon as you are ready to heat your home this year. Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical are the experts you can trust. 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 at 888-315-5564

Why Halloween Is A Scary Time For Your Plumbing

1.  Pumpkin Carving Can Be A Terror On Your Garbage disposal

Pumpkin pulp and seeds are not meant for your sink or toilet. If pumpkin carving is part of your Halloween plans then it is important to stay mindful of where you choose to dispose of your goo and seeds. As you remove the insides from your pumpkins, keep the guts away from your drains. The sticky pumpkin pulp can stop up your sink drains and clog your toilets. The guts may seem soft, but they can harden in your pipes and cause problems. Pumpkin pulp and seeds can even land those of us with garbage disposals in the middle of a Halloween plumbing nightmare. Keep your plumbing damage-free and simply toss all of your pumpkin parts in the trash or compost.

2. Put A Stop To All The Spooky Sounds

Are strange noises keeping you up at night? The haunting sounds of your pipes banging, thumping and rattling are scary for more than one reason. When you hear your pipes making these noises it may be a warning sign of something seriously wrong. Your water pressure may be too high or worse, some of your pipes could be loose. Loose pipes can cause flooding in your home among other issues and you should have them fixed ASAP to avoid a real Halloween plumbing nightmare. Find out the cause of those spooky noises by calling Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ toll-free @888-315-5564

3. Beware Of Leaky Faucets

Frightening enough, a leaky faucet is a major signal for potential underlying problems with your plumbing system. Unfortunately, that isn’t the scariest thing about a leaky faucet. According to experts leaks contribute to about 14% of your average water use each day. This means the scariest thing about a leaky faucet is all the money you are wasting on your water bill. Even small and slow leaks add up. Have a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ professional fix your faucet and stop your money from going down the drain.

4. Don’t Be Afraid!  You Aren’t Alone!

If a plumbing nightmare does strike your home this Halloween season, Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ is here for you. Our professionals are always here for you no matter how scary it may seem! 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

Understanding Your Internal Furnace Parts:

  • Thermostat: This device is the control system for your home’s temperature. A temperature-activated switch tells a control board inside the furnace to start the heating cycle by turning on an ignition switch.
  • Draft/Hood Fan: Air is pulled into the burners and mixes with natural gas (the most common type of fuel source in NJ) to create combustion. The fan directs the heat from the burners into the heat exchanger where harmful, exhaust gases, like carbon monoxide (CO), are vented outside.
  • Burners: Furnace burners are a set of tubes where gas is directed to and then burned. A gas valve, igniter, and flame sensor all work together to control the flames. When your thermostat signals your heater to turn on, the gas valve opens and the mixture is ignited. The flame sensor acts as a safeguard that will shut off incoming gas if the flame isn’t present. Dirty burners and flame sensors are common repairs we often see.
  • Heat Exchanger: The burners heat a series of metal tubes in order to warm the air that is being pulled into the furnace. Any damage to the heat exchangers could let gases like CO leak into the house, which is why having a carbon monoxide detector is important to have in your home.
  • Blower: The blower fan will direct air that comes from the return ducts into the hot heat exchanger. The heated air is then blown throughout the home’s ductwork.
  • Flue: A flue vent collects the combustion gases used to create heat and send them outside of your home.
  • Green Apple Plumbing and 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 Stop Your Pipes From Drips & Leaks

Leaky faucets and pipes are common plumbing problems in apartments and houses. Dripping faucets are more of a nuisance and a waste of money than a plumbing emergency, but those drips add up quickly fixing the leaks in your home could save you up to 10% on your water bill. A faucet leaking one drip per second adds up to 3,000 gallons the equivalent of 180 showers. Nationwide, plumbing leaks can account for over 1 trillion gallons of water. Leaking faucets are easy to spot since the water physically drips out of the faucet when it is in the off position. You can usually hear the drips even if you aren’t in the room.

Leaking pipes can cause major damage if you don’t catch the problem immediately. You often spot leaking pipes after a period of time when you see a puddle below the pipes or hear dripping.

  • What Causes the Problem: A dripping faucet typically occurs when the washer that forms the seal on the tap gets damaged. Damage may include tearing, dislodging or stiffening. When this damage occurs, the washer no longer seals tightly, allowing small amounts of water to drip from the faucet. Over time, the valve seat may also wear or corrode. If your pipes are leaking, the most likely location is at a joint. Leaks may occur due to deterioration, shifting, high water pressure or other damage.
  • How to Solve the Issue: In faucets, replacing the washer responsible for the leak solves the problem. This can be a DIY job, but replacing the washer is easier with specialty tools, so you may want to call a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical plumber. Leaking pipes may be a simple job or a very complex one. Even if you just need to replace a simple U-joint, it’s sometimes easier to let a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical professional handle the job to avoid a big mess.
  • Preventing the Problem: Natural wear from regular use is often difficult to avoid. Over time, leaking faucets are bound to happen. Slow that wear by turning faucets on and off slowly and avoiding excessive pressure on the handles. Leaky pipes are difficult to prevent, but you can spot the problem early with regular inspection. Look for moisture or small drips. Visible rusting or white lime deposits can signal the potential for leaking.
  • When to Call a Plumber: Call a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ plumber to replace the washer if you don’t have experience with plumbing. For leaking pipes, call a Green Apple professional when the job is too large or if you don’t want to mess with the clean-up.
  • 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

Are Your Heating Vents & Registers Clear?

There are probably some things you do to get yourself prepared for fall in New Jersey, like sipping pumpkin spice lattes and planning your pumpkin carving. There are a couple of things you might forget about while doing your fall prep – like your furnace. We’re about to say goodbye to air conditioner weather and we’re leaping into furnace season. Along with your annual furnace inspection from Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ, we have a few tips that can help keep you comfortable and get your furnace prepped for its busy season.

  1. Check and Change Your Air Filter
    This is easy advice for every season in New Jersey. Before you make that switch from “cool” to “heat,” go swap out your filter from dusty to clean. A filthy filter means your furnace has to try harder to keep you warm which may negatively influence your comfort and result in higher bills.
  2. Unblock Heating Vents and Registers
    As you’ve relocated furniture or brought more into the house, be sure you haven’t blocked any of your heating vents. A blocked vent might increase your utility expenses.
  3. Schedule Annual Furnace Service
    Fall is the perfect time in New Jersey to get your furnace looked at by one of our expert technicians. We will do a thorough inspection of your unit and ensure it will be in good working order for the upcoming winter months in New Jersey. Regular furnace service can help you get the most out of your furnace’s performance, and could also affect the life of your system. Not to mention that a pretty high percentage of emergency calls in the winter are due to lack of maintenance.

We want you to enjoy every portion of the season in comfort. If you have any questions for us about getting your home ready for fall or need to set up your annual furnace service give the professionals at Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical New Jersey toll-free @888-611-7191. Green Apple Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the New Jersey 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 the professionals at Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ.

Furnace Maintenance & Your Family’s Health

Furnace maintenance is important for your family’s health.

While your furnace circulates air throughout your home, you don’t want it circulating dust and other airborne pollutants along with it. A dirty air filter (and a dirty furnace) make it harder to remove pollutants from your home’s indoor air (contaminants like dust mites, mold, pet dander, dead skin, allergens, viruses and more). During your furnace maintenance appointment, your Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical technician will be sure your unit is clean of mildew, mold, dust and other contaminants that can affect your indoor air quality and your family’s health.

Furnace maintenance is essential for the life of your HVAC system.
Even if everything is working well, this kind of preventive furnace maintenance is important for the life of your HVAC system, addressing any issues before they turn into expensive repairs or replacements. Remember the better shape your furnace is in, the longer it will last. A properly maintained furnace can last for 15-20 years.

Make sure your furnace is in peak condition and ready to run all fall and winter long. For more tips on maintaining your furnace or to schedule a furnace maintenance appointment with Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ. We 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