Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Boilers’

Furnaces vs. Boilers: What’s Best for Your Home Heating?

Monday, October 2nd, 2023

Boilers are a great way to heat your home, but they’ve become less popular over time. Instead, furnaces have taken their mantle and continue to be one of the most popular home heating options available on the market today. So what should you do? Consider a boiler, or furnace installation n Frederick, MD? Let’s help you find out.

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What Is “Kettling” In a Boiler?

Monday, December 27th, 2021

Boilers play a crucial role in keeping you and your family comfortable during the cold season. But when these appliances start showing signs of malfunctioning, life during winter can be challenging. For this reason, it is important that you are aware of some common signs that may be warning you to an issue with your boiler.

Have you noticed any whistling sounds coming from your boiler? This could be kettling. Kettling indicates a serious issue that needs to be examined by experts in heating repair in Germantown, MD.

Here are some important details you need to know about kettling in a boiler.

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Common Signs You Need to Schedule Boiler Repair

Monday, November 16th, 2020

As we gear up for another cold winter, heating systems will come on in homes all throughout Maryland and Washington, DC. If you use a boiler to heat your home, you’ll soon start enjoying the even and pleasant warmth you expect from this type of heating system.

Or … maybe you won’t. Because even with the best seasonal maintenance for a boiler, it can still malfunction and require heating repair in Germantown, MD. We don’t want you to miss out on any of the comfort you deserve from your boiler this winter, and so we’ve laid out some warning signs to look for that the boiler needs our help soon. We’re committed to giving you the best experience with your home heating system possible

Here are the top warnings that your boiler needs pros to repair it:

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Has the Time Come at Last to Replace Your Boiler?

Monday, December 16th, 2019

One of the biggest advantages of using a boiler to heat a house is that a boiler can last longer than most other heating systems. With proper care, a boiler can last from 20 to 30 years before it starts to suffer from excessive wear.

If you have an older boiler, you may wonder if this is the year to have it replaced. Or your younger boiler may have a malfunction that’s too expensive to fix. We’ll examine some of the ways you can determine if you should replace your home’s boiler system before winter deepens.

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The Problem of Boiler Kettling

Monday, November 21st, 2016

Is your boiler making a strange sound, like a giant, sinister tea kettle? If so, you should call for repairs right away. That sound is a problem called kettling, and it’s a serious threat to the health of your boiler. Let’s take a look at why boiler kettling happens in the first place, and what it can do if you leave it alone for long enough.

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What You Should Know About Boiler Kettling

Monday, November 23rd, 2015

If your boiler is rumbling like a giant tea kettle, you may have a problem. Specifically, you probably have a kettling problem. Despite what it sounds like, your boiler probably isn’t going to explode. However, kettling can still inflict severe damage to both the boiler and the surrounding area. Let’s take a look at what causes kettling, how it can harm your system, and what you should do about it.

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Why You Should Install a Boiler Heating System Before Winter

Monday, October 19th, 2015

Fall is the time of year when homeowners start to get their homes ready for the cold of winter. For most people, that means scheduling heating maintenance and conducting other repairs. For some people, though, it means installing an entirely new heating system. If you’re in the market for a new heater, consider installing a boiler system this fall. Let’s take a look at how a boiler system can help keep your home warm this winter.

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Heating Tip: Early Warning Signs of Heating System Problems

Monday, November 26th, 2012

Heating systems function best and last longest when they are well maintained. Homeowners sometimes wait until a break-down in the heating system of their home before addressing a problem.  These types of repairs are usually costly, and can weaken the overall functionality of a heating system.  By keeping an eye out for early warning signs that your heating system may be in need of maintenance or repair, you will save money and extend the life of the heater.

Here are early warning signs to look out for:

Heat Pumps

Proper air flow is essential for any heating system to work well, including heat pumps. If you believe there is an inconsistency in air flow from your heat pump, or you feel air leaks coming from ducts, it is a good idea to call a professional to inspect it. An HVAC contractor can check to see that the air is moving properly throughout the system. It is a good idea to have your coils cleaned on your heat pump, because if they are dirty or clogged it can prevent good air flow.


There are a few early warning signs that your boiler may be in need of maintenance.  If you notice a decrease in heat being produced, something may have happened inside the boiler to reduce the hot water levels. You can check the pressure gauge, or call a technician to do so, to see if that is culprit. If there is a problem with the radiator within the boiler, you may hear a hissing sound or there may be a lack of heat if this is the case. Problems with the radiator will require an HVAC technician to fix it.

If you notice that your gas boiler’s pilot light has gone out that may indicate a gas flow problem within the system. Call an HVAC technician, who should be able to easily fix the issue. And if you notice any water leakage coming from your boiler, that can lead to problems with temperature control.

If you notice any signs of trouble with your heating system, especially early on, it is important to address them as soon as possible to help maintain your heater’s performance.  Call Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating at 301-670-0034 with any questions or to help address any concerns with the heating system in your Gaithersburg area home.

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Heating Maintenance Tasks for Furnaces, Boilers, Heat Pumps, and Geothermal Systems

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Regular maintenance of your heating and air conditioning system is critical to extending the life of your equipment and keeping it running well. We’ve laid out some of the basic maintenance practices for furnaces, boilers, heat pumps, and geothermal systems.

Furnace Maintenance

Here are some essential tasks that need to be regularly performed on your furnace by a professional:

  • Check and replace the air filter
  • Check and clean the burner, ignition source
  • Check the flames for irregular movement or color
  • Check the flue for cracks, leaks or holes
  • Check the motor and fan blades for debris and obvious wear or repair needs

Boiler Maintenance

Boilers also need regular, professional maintenance. Here are some things your contractor will do:

  • Bleed radiators to release air bubbles
  • Check and clean burner
  • Check water and air levels in expansion chamber
  • Check for water leaks around the base of the boiler
  • Check pump, lubricate parts as necessary

Heat Pump Maintenance

Heat pumps typically have a condensing unit outside that needs regular, professional maintenance. Heat pump maintenance includes:

  • Changing air filters
  • Check refrigerant levels
  • Lubricate and clean all moving parts like fan motor, belts and blades
  • Check coils for leaks
  • Check drainage line and condensate pan for clogs or leaks
  • Visually inspect your duct system

Geothermal Maintenance

Though geothermal systems don’t need a lot of maintenance, there are some tasks that need to be performed by a professional regularly to keep them working efficiently.

  • They will change the air filter for your geothermal system
  • Check the refrigerant pressure gauges regularly to make sure that there isn’t a leak in your loop
  • Check and lubricate moving parts like fan motors, belts and blades
  • Visually inspect your ducts
  • Check condensation drain lines and the condensate pan for clogs and leaks

Regular professional maintenance is absolutely critical to your comfort. If you have questions about heating and air conditioning maintenance for your home in Gaithersburg, then call the experts at Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating today at 301-670-0034.

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Poor Heating Performance with Your Boiler: Possible Solutions

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist or a mechanical engineer to troubleshoot – and possibly diagnose – the problems with your Silver Spring home’s boiler when its heating performance is erratic or non-existent.

The good thing about boilers is that they are typically reliable and long-lasting. There aren’t a lot of working parts that can break down and cause problems, compared to other home heating equipment. When problems do arise, they are usually related to the expansion tank or circulating pumps. But a problem can be much simpler – like a tripped circuit breaker.

The most common problems can be noise, no heat, or poor/erratic heating. Before calling a qualified heating and cooling professional, take a moment to see if you can figure out the what’s wrong.

If you have a noisy boiler it might be because of two things – a faulty circulating pump or water trapped in the return lines. If the pump breaks it will make a loud noise when its motor runs. Water can be trapped in the return lines, which may require “re-pitching” the lines to allow for a flow back to the boiler. You may be able to adjust the flow by positioning hangers on the piping but replacing a pump is better left to a professional.

If your boiler is producing no heat, it could be because of something as simple as a circuit breaker being tripped or a fuse being blown. Check your circuit breakers and fuse and reset or replace if necessary. Is your boiler thermostat in the heat mode? It should be but if it isn’t, make the switch. If your boiler has a standing pilot you should check to see if it is lit and if not, re-light it.

Other problems would take a professional to fix. For example, no heat can be traced to low water levels in the boiler. The boiler should always be half-full of water and if it isn’t, it is likely because of leaks or a faulty pressure reducing valve. Don’t try and fix the problem by yourself.

Low water levels may not cause the boiler to lose its heating capabilities, but may cause fluctuations in its heating capacity. Again, it is advisable to call a professional to diagnose and fix the problem. Poor heating can also be traced to mineral deposits in the boiler. Consult your owner’s manual on instructions how to flush out the boiler.

As always, read the owner guide or operating manual for your boiler. You should get some good tips on proper maintenance and troubleshooting. And have the phone number of a qualified professional taped to your boiler – just in case.

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