Dirt is one of your furnace’s biggest enemies. A dirty furnace can not only cause unexpected breakdowns of your heating system, but it can also have a direct effect on the health and energy consumption of your home. Today we’re going to take a look at some of the top reasons you should keep your furnace clean and the two best ways you can go about doing it.
- Better air quality. If dirt is making its way to your furnace, there’s a good chance it’s also getting into your home’s airflow. Dirt particles and other airborne contaminants can make you sick and aggravate symptoms of asthma and allergies. By taking steps to keep your furnace clean, you’ll also improve the quality of air that you and your family breathe.
- Improved efficiency. If you don’t keep your furnace clean, dirt can build up on different components of your heating system and reduce its efficiency. A dirty air filter, for example, will restrict your furnace’s airflow and cause your blower motor to work harder than normal to compensate. When dirt builds up on your blower’s blades, it can weigh them down and reduce their efficiency. In either scenario, your furnace will have to work harder and consume more energy, which will cause your heating bills to rise. Keeping your furnace clean will avoid these problems and allow your heating system to operate efficiently.
- A safer home. When your heating system has restricted airflow due to dirt buildup (as described in the point above), your furnace will overheat and put extra stress on your heat exchanger. That extra stress can cause your heat exchanger to crack and allow carbon monoxide to get into your home’s air. Keeping your furnace clean will help avoid this dangerous problem.
- Less unexpected repairs. Lack of cleaning is one of the top reasons a furnace unexpectedly breaks down. Often times, these breakdowns lead to expensive repairs that could have been avoided if the furnace was cleaned properly. Some of these problems can also take years off of the operating life of your heating system.
Best Way To Keep Your Furnace Clean
The two best things you can do to keep your furnace clean are keep up with your filter changes and have your furnace tuned- up once a year. By keeping up with your filter changes, you can prevent dirt from building up on your furnace, improve indoor air quality and prevent airflow issues. During an annual tune-up, your furnace will be completely cleaned and prepared to run safely and efficiently for the heating season to come. 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 @888-315-5564Read More
Some homes have quite a bit of ancillary household plumbing that’s outside, and this is even more vulnerable to freezing. In some cases, freezing in exterior plumbing can affect indoor pipes. Here are some examples.
- Garden hoses left outdoors may still be filled with water from the most recent use. Garden hoses with nozzles or other terminators at one end and connected to open faucets are particularly hazardous to your plumbing, as water pressure created by ice formation in the hose may back into the home’s water supply and damage pipes. Disconnect garden hoses, and drain them during freezing weather.
- If your outdoor faucets have indoor shut-off valves in the basement, crawl space, or elsewhere, turn off the water to the faucet during freezing conditions, and open the outdoor faucet to drain residual water out of the line.
- Check the owner’s manual for your home sprinkler system, and follow the procedures to winter-proof the sprinkler pipes and protect them from freeze damage.
- If you have a sump pump in your basement to prevent flooding, keep an eye on the sump pump outlet pipe, usually somewhere behind the house. Make sure the outlet is not blocked by fallen snow or an iced-over puddle. If the pump should activate when the outlet is blocked, water flow may reverse into the basement.
- Other outdoor water lines that may freeze include pipes leading to a swimming pool, fountain, or garden pond. The general plumbing maintenance rule is to shut off water to these uses at the source, then drain the lines.
If Worst Comes to Worst
If your pipes freeze despite proper plumbing maintenance measures, you need immediate professional help from Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ. Don’t wait for the pipes to thaw so you can verify the damage. Pipe ruptures may occur someplace distant from the actual site of ice formation and may be concealed within inaccessible spaces. Water damage can be extensive before you are able to locate and evaluate the problem. During freeze conditions, be alert to any unexplained decline in water pressure or complete cessation of water at any faucet or other outlets. These are red flags that should not be ignored. Turn off household water at the main supply valve, and contact Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ immediately. 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 @888-315-5564Read More
What Are the Most Common Furnace Problems?
Below are the 10 most common furnace problems. Read on for advice on how to repair and fix future furnace problems.
- Lack of maintenance
- Dirty filters
- Wear and tear
- Electric Ignition or pilot control problems
- Malfunctioning thermostat
- The furnace doesn’t heat at all
- The furnace doesn’t heat enough
- Frequent cycling
- The blower continuously runs
- The furnace is too noisy
In the cool fall and winter weather, hundreds of people call Green Apple furnace repair experts because of a problem with their heating system. Whether it’s a commercial or residential setting, the same basic problems plague furnaces. By knowing what the most common furnace problems are, you can take proactive measures to prevent them.
1. Lack of maintenance: You fail to schedule annual furnace maintenance and inspections that could prevent unexpected problems and breakdowns. These routine inspections can help the appliance run more efficiently and reliably.
- Dirty filters: Dirty or clogged air filters reduce airflow, making a furnace work harder to circulate. In some cases, a clogged filter may damage the limit switch, which controls the fan.
- Wear and tear: Normal wear and tear can cause airflow problems, heat control-related problems or even overheating.
- Electric ignition or pilot control problems: A faulty ignition or pilot could make it difficult to heat a home or commercial space. Thermocouple problems, drafts or clogs in the appliance may result in an unlit pilot light.
- Malfunctioning thermostat: A faulty thermostat can lead to problems with the fan or comfort levels.
- The furnace doesn’t heat at all: A furnace that doesn’t perform its main task may have problems with the thermostat setting, power, gas or the pilot light.
- The furnace doesn’t heat enough: In addition to a clogged filter, a furnace may not produce enough heat if it’s the wrong size for the space.
- Frequent cycling: Cycling between the “On” and “Off” modes may indicate a dirty filter, improper airflow or a bad thermostat setting.
- The blower continuously runs: Blower issues may indicate a problem with the limit switch, which a Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical professional may need to replace.
- The furnace is too noisy: Rumbling, squeaking, and rattles aren’t normal. The sounds may indicate a mechanical problem, airflow reductions or a clogged burner.
- 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
It’s cool to pay attention to your furnace while it’s still only cool outside.
Prevention is really the best policy and knowing the signs of a furnace about to go on the fritz will prevent your family from experiencing an uncomfortable surprise this winter.
However, if you haven’t maintained your furnace and the temperature is dropping, it’s not too late to ask for some professional help from Green Apple.
Regular maintenance visits from your oil company will preserve your investment, prevent furnace failure, and keep your family warm for many winter seasons to come.
This article describes three ways to prevent furnace failure in your home.
1. Prevention, Extend the Lifespan of your Furnace
The worst time for your furnace to malfunction is in the middle of this coming winter’s first snowstorm.
Prevention, prevention, prevention!
Last year’s heavy snows should have lodged in your memory prompting you to arrange for heater maintenance and cleaning of your heating system.
The hidden cost of neglect
Your neglected furnace will have been silently paying you back by steadily collecting debris, dust, and dead insects.
Over time, grime from the air filter can migrate to the blower motor causing it to overheat and burn out the fuse. When the fuse itself becomes encrusted with soot and debris, the connection will break, causing the fuse to fail.
Dealing with an old furnace
If your furnace is aging, and particularly if it’s more than fifteen years old, it’s time to consider replacing it before it begins to turn into a fossil.
2. Know the Signs of a Failing Furnace
So, the cold season has arrived, and your furnace is busy trying to keep frigid nights from invading your home.
If your furnace is trying to tell you that it’s in need of repairs, ignoring the following warning signs could deliver a cold and expensive surprise to you and your family.
Some rooms are hotter than others
If you are sweating in one room and freezing in another, this is a sign that warm air is not being distributed efficiently.
You are hearing popping, rattling, groaning, whining, or banging
If your furnace is providing you with a symphony of odd noises, this is your furnace’s cry for help!
The only acceptable sound from your furnace is that of the blower turning on and off.
However, if the blower is doing this constantly, your furnace is not running efficiently. If you constantly have to press “reset,” this also is not a good sign.
You are experiencing rising energy bills
If you have complained about saving money on heating with rising utility bills but have laid the blame on the price of energy. However, the increased expense may be because your furnace is having to work harder to provide the same amount of heat.
Your burner flame is yellow
This is not a matter of aesthetics it should be blue. If it’s yellow, this is a sign that your furnace may be leaking carbon monoxide. Other omens include sooty streaks around the furnace, moisture on cold surfaces such as walls or windows, and rust on the flue pipes.
Your family has increased health problems
Members of your family have seen a rise in breathing-related health issues such as allergies and asthma. A poorly functioning heating system may be putting mold, dust, and other irritants into the air circulating through your house.
3. Keep Your Vents and Pipes Clear of Snow for Oil Deliveries
A weekend storm has dumped more than a foot of snow on your property, and your kids are in a high state of excitement. However, before joining them in a snowball fight, it’s more important to keep their safety in mind.
Blocked vents and pipes can cause a buildup of carbon monoxide inside your home.
So, pull on your high boots, put on your down jacket, grab your shovel, and get out there to clear snowdrifts and ice away from your furnace intake and exhaust pipes. Make sure that all vents coming out of your house are clear.
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 @888-315-5564Read More
8 Signs of a Failing Garbage Disposal
A functioning garbage disposal helps keep your sink and pipes clean. But when problems arise with your disposal, the issues could impact the way you cook, wash up or keep your kitchen clean.
While some garbage disposal problems respond to repairs, others require a full replacement. In this blog, we list eight indicators that you need a new garbage disposal.
If you’ve ever had a piece of silverware slip into your garbage disposal unnoticed, you know just how loud disposals can be. When a new noise occurs, especially any metal-sounding noise, use your hand and a light to check for an obvious source like a lost spoon.
If there doesn’t seem to be anything blocking the blades, the disposal components may be misaligned so that they grind together when you run the appliance. In most cases, a quick adjustment can resolve the problem. It’s important to address new disposal noises as soon as possible because obstructions damage the motor.
The reset button on your garbage disposal is intended to help the appliance recover from unusual situations, like large loads or clogs. But if your garbage disposal is in good shape, you shouldn’t need to use the reset button very often.
If you have to reset the disposal frequently, or even every time you switch it on, your garbage disposal may be aging out. Another common cause of frequent resets is loose wiring which you will need a Green Apple plumber or electrician to resolve safely.
You know that you should wash food particles down the drain in small amounts to avoid clogging the garbage disposal. But if you start to notice that no matter how small your loads are they always seem to jam the appliance, the problem may not be with your cleaning habits.
In some cases, clogs can indicate that you simply need a higher-capacity model. In other situations, these clogs may indicate a malfunction in the device.
If your garbage disposal refuses to turn on or tends to shut off by itself while in use, check to see if the connected circuit has blown. If your electrical system seems to be working normally, schedule a garbage disposal inspection as soon as possible.
Generally, these unexplained power issues indicate a failing motor. The motor may be on its last legs or may have blown out entirely.
Garbage disposal odors can be unpleasant since they usually stem from the breakdown of wet food. However, most of these smells should respond to gentle and thorough rinsing or cleaning.
If nothing seems to help eliminate the odor, you may need professional help. Your Green Apple plumber can take the appliance apart to find and remove any trapped particles that could be causing the issue.
It’s important to note that you should not resort to chemical cleaners when working with your disposal. Not only are most drain cleaners too hard for your plumbing, but all of these solvents can also damage disposal blades and components.
While your disposal may not be strictly failing by the time you decide to remodel your kitchen or replace your sink, you should consider replacing this appliance during a renovation. An old disposal may not often the functionality you expect from a brand new kitchen.
If you should especially consider replacing your disposal if it’s been at least a decade since your last renovation or garbage disposal installation project. Most disposals have a life expectancy of about 10 years, after which they may start clogging more often.
Most loads should run through your disposal quickly. If it seems to take an excessive amount of time for your garbage disposal to break down food particles, the blades may need to be sharpened or replaced.
In some cases, extensive blade deterioration may actually require replacement of the entire unit so be sure to have a Green Apple professional assess the condition of the appliance.
Over time, water may seep through some of the areas where your disposal connects to the rest of your plumbing system. Often, by the time a disposal becomes large enough to be noticeable, it will require full appliance replacement.
These leaks may leave puddles under your sink, pool on the floor by your cabinet, or drip from under the garbage disposal itself. It’s easy to mistake a dishwasher or sink leak for a disposal leak so have a plumber find the cause of any leak that seems like it could be coming from your disposal.
If you notice any combination of the signs listed above, contact your trusted Green Apple Mechanical plumber for a garbage disposal assessment.
When you need help with a problem disposal, trust Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ. We can provide the services you need as well as recommendations for caring for your garbage disposal to prolong its function for the future. 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 of your plumbing or HVAC needs call toll-free 888-315-5564
Spring isn’t here just yet, which means your furnace is working hard to keep your home warm. Soon, though, temperatures will start to rise. But that doesn’t mean your furnace gets the summer off. Your furnace works every day of the year. During winter, it warms and circulates the air. During summer, it still has the important task of circulating cooled air. Help keep it running at its peak with these helpful tips.
Regular Filter Changes
Have you ever tried drinking a milkshake through a straw? It’s not so easy, is it? That’s the same effect a clogged air filter can have on your home heating and air-conditioning system. And the harder your furnace has to work to pull the air through, the more it will cost you in energy. And lost comfort.
If your furnace uses disposable filters, a good rule of thumb is to change them every 1-3 months unless you have an annual filter. Homes in dusty or dry climates should change their filters more frequently to preserve furnace performance and air quality.
Regular system checkups by a professional.
If you don’t perform regular maintenance on your car, eventually it will break down. Your furnace is the same way. Regular inspection by a trained Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical technician will make sure your furnace runs at its best. This has several benefits:
- It costs less energy to heat and cool your home
- Small problems are detected early before they turn into big problems
- Your home stays more comfortable
Keep your intake pipe clear
Modern condensing furnaces operate with higher energy efficiency, generating more heat with less fuel. However, in order to do so, they require an external intake pipe for their air supply. If this pipe becomes clogged or blocked, that will not only affect your furnace’s efficiency, it can also cause a dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide.
If you have a high-efficiency furnace, look for the intake and exhaust pipes on the exterior of your home. Make sure they’re free of ice, snow, and other obstructions like bird nests or insects. If you cannot easily check the status of your pipe, contact a qualified Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical NJ technician to do it for you.
Use a programmable thermostat
Thermostats help you keep a tighter hold on your energy savings by matching the heating and cooling output of your system to the demands of your home. In other words, when nobody is at home during the day, the system will run less often because there’s nobody there to appreciate the comfort.
Reduce use even when you’re home.
Programmable thermostats can be used to save energy and make your furnace work less hard even when the home is occupied. When outside air is very cold, your furnace has to work harder to keep inside air warm. By lowering your thermostat’s set temperature at night, you can reduce the load on your furnace. And since everyone’s asleep, the temperature difference won’t be felt as much.
Green Apple Plumbing & Mechanical 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 @888-315-5564Read More