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

Listen for These Furnace Noises That Indicate a Problem

Monday, October 24th, 2016

As you use your furnace more and more often this season, you’re going to increase the amount of stress on the system. This makes it more likely for problems to occur. If you want to keep your furnace in the best possible condition, you need to make sure that you can identify problems as quickly as possible. One of the best ways to identify problems early is to listen for strange noises coming from your furnace. Read on to find out more about the various noises that indicate a furnace problem.

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Signs Your Furnace Needs Replacing

Monday, October 26th, 2015

Heating season is here, and for some of us that’s a bit of a problem. If your home heating system is on its last legs, this might be the season that it finally breaks down for good. Since you probably don’t want your furnace to die on you in the middle of the coldest season of the year, you’re going to need to replace it. If you aren’t sure whether or not your furnace is in need of replacement, read on for some of the most common signs.

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How Does a Gas Furnace Operate?

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

The most common heating fixture found in homes is the gas furnace. While they’ve always been a standard in home heating, today’s systems are more reliable and efficient than they have ever been. And since most homes already have a gas hookup and a duct system already in place, a gas furnace often just makes sense.

Few homeowners think about what powers the heat in their home and what happens when they switch on the thermostat. We’ll go over that here briefly, but be sure to call the people at Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing for more information about your furnace or to schedule repairs, maintenance, or new installation.

In order for a gas furnace to operate, you of course need a gas line in the home. In the past, the gas line would remain open in order to keep a pilot light on that would keep burning at all times. Today, however, furnaces are far more efficient in large part because updated ignition systems only ignite the gas once heating is called for by the thermostat. This happens in the combustion chamber, and the byproducts–namely carbon monoxide and water vapor–are vented through a flue and out the home.

The flame heats up a heat exchanger which directly heats the air. A blower fan sucks in cool air from your home. The cool air then blows over the heat exchanger and the now-warm air moves to the vents around your home. The blower fan will not start, though, until the furnace plenum reaches a preset temperature.

Another thing to keep in mind about the gas furnace is that there are many safety features that help to keep the furnace from leaking gas or even explosion. When one of these detects a problem, the unit will shut down. One important safety component, for example, will keep the furnace plenum from overheating. Another will stop gas from leaking should the flame go out.

Call the friendly technicians at Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing for furnace repairs, installation, or maintenance in Gaithersburg. We have experience with gas heating system, so you can feel confident that services have been completed properly and safely.

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Reasons Your Furnace Needs a Pre-Season Maintenance Visit

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

The cooler temperatures have arrived – is your furnace ready to heat your home for the season? One of the best ways to prepare for the winter is to schedule furnace maintenance in Bethesda. Maintenance for your heating system isn’t a quick once-over with a flashlight; it’s a full system tune-up that helps both you and your system throughout the winter months. If it’s been more than a year since your last maintenance appointment, call Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing today!

Here are some of the reasons it’s important to schedule maintenance for your furnace:

  • Helps prevent future repair needs – during maintenance, your system is thoroughly inspected. This allows the technician to detect any existing or developing issues. If small problems are discovered, such as frayed or corroded wiring, the technician will repair these items during the appointment. Should a bigger problem be found, you’ll be informed of the issue and advised to schedule a repair appointment to remedy the problem.
  • Better energy efficiency – your system was made to operate at a specific level of energy efficiency. When the system and its components wear down, and its parts are dirty and dusty, your furnace can’t achieve the level of efficiency it should. The cleaning, adjusting and lubricating that occur during a maintenance appointment allow your system to work optimally, so it can achieve its normal level of efficiency.
  • Better comfort – a worn and dirty furnace will have a hard time achieving the temperature that you set on your thermostat. The tune-up your system receives during a maintenance appointment allows the system to function optimally so it can achieve the comfort level you need.
  • Extends system lifespan – a furnace that operates year after year without maintenance is far more prone to breakdown and premature aging. Keeping the system in good working order with annual maintenance helps to extend the life of your equipment.

Don’t let a lack of maintenance cause you or your furnace in Bethesda problems this winter. Call Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing and schedule a maintenance appointment with one of our trained experts today.

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Heating Guide: Types of Heating Systems Available

Monday, February 25th, 2013

If you’re considering installing a heating system in your new North Potomac, MD home, or thinking of upgrading to a new type of heating, it’s important to know what your options are. Whatever system you choose, you’ll need to consult with a heating professional in order to make sure that your new heater matches the size of your home, and that it meets your energy-efficiency requirements. Let Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating help you make the right decision. Our team of experienced heating technicians can make sure that your home will stay comfortable all year long.

Depending on the size, location, and needs of your home, several options are available to homeowners in the North Potomac, MD area, from geothermal to ductless mini splits. Here are just a few:

  • Boiler- The boiler heats water and distributes either hot water throughout your home by means of baseboard copper piping or radiators. It can be fueled by gas or electricity. It can also heat the water in your home, making it one of the most versatile conventional heating systems. As an alternative to a forced-air system, the boiler does not use extensive ductwork to circulate air throughout your home, and remains an economical and energy efficient heater.
  • Furnace- This is probably the most common type of heating system. The furnace burns fuel to create hot air, which is then distributed through a system of ducts into the various spaces of your home. New furnaces boast outstanding energy efficiency ratings, much higher than their forebears. Gas furnaces run especially clean.
  • Geothermal. As its name suggests, geothermal systems harness the latent temperature of the earth to heat your home. The temperature of the ground below the frost line stays at a median of about 50 degrees Fahrenheit and the geothermal heating system extracts the heat of the median temperature by means of a heat transfer fluid, and a heat pump then uses that heat to warm air which is circulated throughout your home. It is a sustainable and environmentally friendly solution.

Remember that consulting with a heating professional should be the first step. Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating will ensure that your heater is professionally installed and serviced. Call us today at 301-670-003 for heating services in North Potomac, MD and the surrounding areas!

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HVAC Question: What is a Matched HVAC System?

Monday, May 7th, 2012

It has been about 200 years since the arrival of interchangeable parts during the Industrial Revolution. Today, we laud being able to take a malfunctioning part from a car, computer or vacuum cleaner, replace it with a newly minted part from any number of manufacturers, then keep right on plugging along.

Although this is a blessing in most arenas, when it comes to the HVAC system in your Silver Spring home, it is not necessarily a good practice. Heating and cooling systems work best when they are matched – but what does that mean? And why does it matter?

Why Matched Parts Matter in HVAC Systems

When referring to HVAC systems, a matched system is one in which various components are designed to work together. For example, an air conditioner and furnace made by the same manufacturer can be matched, as can a furnace and a heat pump.

Typically, the matching is done in such a way that the “outdoor” components, such as air conditioners and heat pumps are designed to work best with their “indoor” partners, like air handlers and furnaces. There are also matched systems in which every component is matched to every other.

Efficiency Boosts

While this may seem to make maintenance and repairs a pain, the practice provides a big boost to the efficiency of the system. Because the components were designed and manufactured by the same team to work in harmony, the system performs optimally. Although you can often replace one component of a matched system with one from another manufacturer and have it work fine, the system can lose efficiency, often to a significant and noticeable extent.

For these reasons, it is best to make use of matched systems in your home whenever possible. This means choosing a new matched system to install, replacing broken parts with ones that match the rest of the system and even replacing older systems with newer ones to properly match, when necessary.

It may seem like a hassle at first, but it saves money in the long run by adding increased efficiency over unmatched systems. For more information about how to keep your HVAC system working at peak efficiency, give Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating a call at 301-670-0034!

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Heating Guide: How to Monitor Heat Flow from Furnace Registers

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Of the many kinds of heating systems, forced air furnaces are among the simplest in Rockville and monitoring the flow of heat is as simple as checking the registers and feeling the flow.

The Basics of Hot Air

At the furnace, usually in the basement or a central location, air is heated to a temperature set by the thermostat.  Once large and dominant, over the years, technological improvements have enabled furnaces to be much smaller and fit into closets.

With a fan, the warm air is circulated through a system of ducts and distributed at registers or grates usually in the floor.  A second grate takes the cooler air back to the furnace to be heated.

Going With the Flow

While a forced air system tends to fluctuate between cycles, temperatures should be consistent throughout the home from room to room.  As heat is distributed, rooms get quickly warmer, then cool several degrees as heat dissipates until the thermostat setting starts the cycle over.

If there is poor circulation, the efficiency of the system is greatly reduced.  The furnace runs more often, adding strain and cost to the heating of your Rockville home.  Some rooms remain comfortable while the rise and fall of temperatures in others may be more radical or remain too cool.

Monitoring the Flow

By turning the thermostat higher, the furnace will engage and begin to force air to the registers.

Most registers have adjustable slats that can be rotated to allow more or less flow.  Checking to make sure all are fully open is the first step.  There is usually a lever or gear in obvious view.

Make sure all registers are free to allow air movement and not blocked by furniture or carpets.

After testing with your hand to see if there is adequate air flow, using an infrared or dial thermometer will more accurately identify if there are differences from register to register which could indicate a blockage of some sort in the vent or a problem with the system at the furnace.

Solutions

Furnaces should be maintained on a yearly basis by contracting with a company like Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating who can regularly change the filters, inspect the internal elements and ensure proper and efficient functioning of this most important part of your Rockville home.

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