The heating bills can increase as winter approaches. It’s possible that the heating bills get out of a hand and disturb your entire budget. But, the heating bills don’t have to be too high. You need to take a trip to your house and check if any problems are causing high heating bills. There are simple practices that can help you save money while keeping the house warm and cozy.
Here are some easy tips that will keep your house warm while maintaining the heating bills in check as well.
1. Make Sure Weather-Stripping is in Good Condition
If the weather-stripping around the doors is torn then, cold air can quickly enter the house. About 7 to 12 percent of heat loss of the home happens because of the space around the doors and windows. The leaks often force the homeowners to turn up the heat so that the house is comfortable. They cause warm air to escape and the furnace has to work extra hard to maintain a warm temperature. The weather-stripping needs to be replaced after a few years so that they can efficiently stop the cold air from entering the house.
2. Avoid Having Any Drafts Around Electrical Boxes
The electrical boxes which are present in exterior walls, are drafty because their insulation is not always correctly installed in the boxes. You can stop the leaks by removing the cover plates and filling small gaps with acrylic latex caulk. If the holes are large, then you can use a foam sealant. It will help in saving a lot of money and keep your home comfortable. It is just a small investment which is going to be very profitable in the long run.
3. Fill The Gaps in Exterior Wall
The areas where the pipes, electrical cables, and gas lines enter the house have gaps around it. These holes are often filled haphazardly with some caulk. But if the caulk is not high quality, it will crack and will eventually fall off. The gaps provide a passageway to the cold air, and it enters the house. You can prevent the outside air to enter the room by filling the gaps with expanding foam. By doing so, you will see a considerable decrease in the heating bills.
4. Benefits of Having A Portable Heater
You can lower the temperature of the furnace and put a portable heater in a place where family sits together. The temperature of rest of the house will be higher, but the living room will be warm and cozy. It will help in lowering the heating cost by about three percent. You will have to buy the heater but it is not very expensive, so the initial cost is balanced by the saving you will achieve in the heating bills.
5. Lower Heat Loss with Cost-Effective Plastic Film
Windows play a significant role in the overall heat loss of the house. You can prevent it by covering the windows with plastic film. It is a very effective way of decreasing the heat loss. The plastic film is also pretty cheap, so if it gets damaged, you can easily replace it. It won’t have any adverse effect on the trim of the windows, and you can quickly take it off as winter wears off.
6. Do Not Forget to Insulate The Attic Access Door
You may have insulated the attic completely but if the access door is not covered, it will let the warm air escape. It is important to make sure that the door is also covered so that there is no escape route for the hot air to get out of the house. You can use an adhesive and attach insulation known as the fiberglass batt to seal the door properly.
7. Keep The Thermostat Up to Date
You can save a lot on heating bills by using a programmable thermostat. It can automatically turn down the temperature when you are not at home or sleep, etc. They are not too expensive, and they are responsible for cutting the bills by ten percent or more. Buying a smart thermostat is an excellent way of saving on the heating bills.
These are some of the highly efficient and affordable ways to ensure that the heating bills do not get out of a hand.
The answer is YES…. you should have your Furnace serviced annuall. Give us a call 1-800-673-4922
Replace or clean your furnace filter. You should replace or clean your furnace filter(s) three or four times yearly. This is a quick, easy job every homeowner or tenant can do. A new filter makes your furnace more energy-efficient and saves money, too.
A furnace that is not running at peak performance can be deadly. Carbon Monoxide is a natural product of incomplete combustion. Virtually every gas furnace produces some Carbon Monoxide, which is usually carried away from your home through the furnace’s venting. A clean, efficiently burning gas furnace produces very small amounts of carbon monoxide, while a dirty, inefficiently burning one can produce deadly amounts. Carbon Monoxide is odorless and colorless. It causes flu-like symptoms, disorientation, confusion, and even death.
It is highly recommended that you have your furnace cleaned and checked every year. The older the furnace, the more important this service is. Newer gas furnaces are equipped with many features that shut the furnace off when a problem is detected. Older furnaces have no such devices. Over time, furnaces can develop small cracks in the combustion chamber. These cracks may not be visible to the naked eye. It is through these cracks that Carbon Monoxide can leak into your home.
It is also important to change your furnace filter regularly. The filter usually is found just inside the front cover of the furnace. It may have its own access door on the front of the furnace. A clean filter will help your furnace burn more efficiently, and will help keep dust from being circulated through your home.
- Keep the area around your furnace clean and unobstructed.
- Keep the burner area of your furnace clean.
- Furnaces that require lubrication on the motors and bearings should be attended to by a qualified heating technician once a year.
- Do not have anything combustible within six inches of your vent pipe.
- Do not close off more than 20% of the registers in your house. This can cause high resistance and unnecessary heat build up in the furnace.
- Do not store combustible material such as paint thinners, gasoline, etc. near your furnace.
Scale: Flakes of rust, produced by the by-products of burning gas (carbon dioxide and water vapor). Scale may fall on the burners and impede gas flow. Over time, it can damage your furnace by harboring moisture, thereby fostering rust on a large scale. The solution: Your service technician can take out the burners and clean them. You can clean out excess rust flakes that fall to the bottom of the furnace housing.
Grinding, chattering sounds from relays (signifying electrical problems), a burner that huffs and puffs, banging (delayed ignition), or clunking and bumping (cracked belt passing over pulleys)? The solution: A good rule of thumb: if it’s an unusual noise, it’s a problem. Unless you’re completely comfortable with changing a relay or a belt, call your service technician.
Carbon Monoxide: It’s colorless, odorless and tasteless, and it can kill you if it’s concentrated enough. It is caused by a lack of oxygen or a disruption of the fuel-burning process. The solutions: Your furnace breathes, just like you. Provide adequate ventilation to the unit and consider installing a fresh-air (combustion) intake. Use carbon monoxide detectors, combined with routine maintenance checks by qualified service technicians (mark them on your calendar).
Yellow Flame: That flame should be sharp and blue, clean and stable, burning as purely as possible. A yellow flame indicates dirt in the burner, which prevents it from mixing the gas and air properly. The solution: Call your technician to thoroughly test the system and clean it.
Dusty Smell: You turn up the thermostat and within minutes, your home is filled with a dry, dusty smell. The solutions: 1) Don’t worry; it’s just burning the dust out of the combustion chamber. Change your filter . 2) If it’s a constant odor, call your technician. 3) If it smells like gas, call your utility company.
Backdrafting/Negative Pressure: Negative pressure results when you take air out of the house by using oxygen faster than air can enter the house. Backdrafting is a natural consequence of negative pressure; air rushes into the house through the chimney, effectively choking off the natural process of venting. The solution: Run a combustible air duct to the unit from the outside.
Beware of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
A clean, efficiently running gas furnace provides safe, economical heat. A gas furnace that is not running at peak performance can be deadly. Carbon Monoxide is a natural product of incomplete combustion. That includes wood, kerosene, gasoline, oil, propane, or natural gas. Virtually every gas furnace produces some Carbon Monoxide, which is usually carried away from your home through the furnace’s venting. A clean, efficiently burning gas furnace produces very small amounts of carbon monoxide, while a dirty, inefficiently burning one can produce deadly amounts.
CO is a toxic, tasteless, colorless, and odorless gas. Even small amounts can cause severe illness and even death. Symptoms include headaches, dizziness, faintness, drowsiness, pain in the ears, or seeing spots. Many people often mistake CO symptoms for the flu. If you or any of your family members are experiencing flu-like symptoms that seem to disappear when you leave your home, have your furnace checked immediately. If you suspect a carbon monoxide problem, open the windows and leave the home at once.
How to survive without heat
Fireplace or Wood Burning Stove: Remove all obstructions from the fireplace and flue before you start a fire. Burn only well seasoned wood. Do not start a fire with highly combustible fuels such as lighter fluid or gasoline. Charcoal and other coal products can give off toxic fumes and should not be used. Remember to also have proper ventilation because the fire is using up oxygen. Always use a fireplace screen to keep sparks from flying into the room. And keep the damper open when a fire is burning, as well as when a fire is dying out.
Stay Elsewhere: If your heating equipment will be out of service for an extended period of time, you might want to consider staying with family or friends or in a hotel/motel, particularly if there are infants or elderly people in your household. Find a friend to take your pets in and care for them.
Never Use Your Gas Oven for Heating: Prolonged use of the open oven in a closed house burns oxygen, thereby causing improper combustion of gas, which creates a lethal carbon monoxide gas.
It’s a scorching hot day in the middle of summer and all of sudden your air conditioner stops working. This is a nightmare scenario and one we all hope to avoid, but don’t panic. Fix My AC can help, and we will try to Fix YOUR AC the same day that you call..
However, it’s always better to avoid this crisis in the first place. If you notice any problems with your air conditioner, be sure to schedule an appointment with a trained technician. After their inspection, they will probably find that the reason your air conditioner isn’t working is because of one of these 6 common air conditioner issues.
- If your air conditioning is running just fine, but it doesn’t seem to be producing air that is cool enough, you may be low on refrigerant. A professional can refuel your system and check for leaks. Be sure to schedule regular maintenance to avoid this issue.
- Drainage Problems.Is your air conditioner leaking? The drain line may be clogged and need to be cleaned. You could also have a dirty evaporator coil. Call Fix My AC to get the situation checked out.
- Dirty Filter. Make sure you’ve changed your filter recently. A dirty air filter can limit your airflow and reduce the effectiveness of your system’s overall cooling ability.
- Electric Control Failure.If your unit is no longer turning on, It may be cause by an electrical control failure. These failures happen when your unit gets worn out from turning off and on too often.
- There are a few ways in which a faulty thermostat can affect your cooling system. It may be that the sensor is broken, the batteries might be dead or it might just be old and need replacement. If you have an old model that needs to be replaced, consider upgrading to a programmable thermostat to save on energy costs.
- Ductwork Problems.You will notice poor air flow if there are issues with your ductwork. You might have clogs or other buildups preventing the air from flowing properly. An air duct cleaning can have a dramatic effect on cleaning up your air quality and improving the air flow.
Your air conditioner can run into all kinds of issues including poor air flow, reduced cooling ability or completely not working. If your air conditioner has any of these symptoms or if you suspect any other problems with your air conditioner, be sure to contact a professional. Only they can accurately assess the issue and decide on the best possible solution. The best way to avoid issues in the first place is to schedule regular maintenance. Fill out our online form or call us at 1-800-673-4922 and we’ll make sure your air conditioner is all set and ready to keep you cool.
Noticing your AC blowing warm air? Now that’s a reason to sweat. Dont panic. There are many different reasons why your AC is blowing warm air and sure, it can get kind of complicated.
But hold the phone. Before calling a professional, check out these 3 common causes that are simple to diagnose and easy to fix on your own.
Thermostat set to HEAT or fan set to ON: Yes, we’re serious. Check your thermostat setting and make sure it’s NOT set to “HEAT”. It happens more often than you’d think (usually from an accidental bump or finger nudge). “ON” means the fan is always blowing air through your vents, even when your system isn’t working to cool the air it blows. And, while that can help improve air quality if you have a whole-home air cleaner installed, it could also be the reason why you feel warm air (or at least air that isn’t cooled) blowing through your vents.
DIY fix: Make sure your thermostat is set to “COOL”. And use the “AUTO” setting if you don’t have a whole-home air cleaner.
Outside unit clogged: Your home’s AC system is made up of 2 main components— an outside unit and an inside unit. Both units work together to remove heat from your home. To do that, it needs unrestricted airflow to something called a “condenser coil”, which is located in your outside unit.
An outside unit clogged by dirt, leaves or debris can keep your AC from properly cooling your home’s air.
DIY fix: You can prevent this problem by using a broom to sweep any visible debris away from your outside unit. Also make sure to trim bushes, weeds and tall grass that could restrict airflow.
Loss of power to outside unit: As we discussed earlier, your AC system is actually 2 parts that work together. If the outside unit loses power but the inside unit doesn’t, it is possible that you could experience warm air coming out of your air vents.
There are 2 places an outside AC unit can lose power:
- At the circuit breaker. Check to see if the breaker for your outside unit got tripped.
- An emergency shutoff switch. This is usually located on your home’s exterior wall, right by the outside AC unit. Check to see it’s in the “on” position.
DIY fix: Locate the breaker switch on your outside unit and flip the switch all the way OFF and then back ON.
Note: If your AC continues to trip your breaker, call Fix My AC at 1-800-673-4922 – This is a sign of a serious electrical problem in your air conditioner.
Problems that need an A/C Professional – Fix My AC can help you with.
Here are a few more complicated causes that your AC is blowing warm air that will also require Fix My AC – give us a call at 1-800-673-4922
- Low freon/refrigerant Leak
- Dirty evaporator coil
- Return duct that is broken or disconnected
Fix My AC is your number one choice for servicing your Air Conditioner. Give us a call at 1-800-673-4922
During the peak times of the summer months, a good air-conditioning system in your home or office provides a nice, cool air flow, and optimum comfort to escape the temperatures of extreme heat. But even the best and most high tech A/C units can still develop minor snags, causing them to either fail, or prevent them from working efficiently after a period of time. This is why it’s so essential to get your A/C system serviced well ahead of time, before any repairs are ever needed. However, in the case where repairs are necessary, here are our top 5 repair tips that you should take into consideration before any existing problems escalate into much bigger issues in the future.
Warm or Stale Air
This is actually quite a common problem which typically occurs when the evaporator coils have become frozen. The air in your home will eventually turn warm, or seem stale. You can attempt to repair it yourself by thawing out the entire system, although contacting a professional to assist with repairs may be a better option. This is because sometimes there may be other underlying issues that they can diagnose in which you might be unable to see.
Foul Smell or Odor
If you are getting an odd or downright foul smelling odor that omits from the A/C unit after switching it on, then there’s a chance that there is a potential obstruction in the duct system somewhere. Generally, it is caused by an abundance of bacterial or mildew growth within the system or unit. Thoroughly cleaning up any constricted ducts will allow for more efficient breathing of the system, helping you to prevent or avoid any respiratory problems that could arise as a result.
If you find that your air conditioner is just simply not able to perform or function in the way that it is supposed to, then you can also check its circuits. In some cases, you may even find the AC unit is unable to get powered back on, at all. Check the breakers to find out if one has been thrown, or if it has possibly even blown up.
A healthy running A/C system will typically make a continuous low humming or whirring sound, which is generally not given too much attention. However, squealing or squeaking noises are normally not a good sign, and they are often related to belt problems. Also, rattling noises are generally a result of one or more operating components that have come loose. Changes in sounds are usually ignored, but doing so for too long can result in much bigger problems down the road. You should get any unusual or odd noises checked out by professional servicemen as soon as possible.
If you experience any abnormal changes in your internal temperatures without making any adjustments to the settings, then the thermostat might need to either be repaired, or possibly even replaced. In many cases, simply calibrating the thermostat can take care of the problem, and get your A/C unit back to functioning properly again. Either way, it is a good idea to hire a professional in this instance, rather than fix the problem on your own.
If your A/C unit is experiencing any of the above – Give Us a call at Fix My AC 1-800-673-4922 .
10 simple ways to save energy and money this summer:
- Set your air conditioner thermostat as high as comfortable – we recommend 78ºF or higher when you’re at home, and 85ºF when you’re gone. Keep inside air vents clear from furniture and other objects.
- Have your central air conditioner tuned up and clean or replace filters monthly for more efficient operation.
- Minimize indoor heat: run the dryer and dishwasher at night on hot days and let your dishes air dry. Avoid heat-generating incandescent lighting and use a microwave, toaster oven or outdoor grill instead of the oven. It's best to avoid the use of major appliances between 2 and 8 p.m.
- Set your water heater to 120ºF.
- Keep the blinds and windows closed during the day and open at night. This is a no-cost way to keep your home a little cooler.
- Window, ceiling and whole-house fans are also low-cost ways to stay comfortable.
- Wash clothes in cold water and clean the lint filter in the dryer after every use.
- Unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. Plug home electronics, such as TVs, DVD players and computers into power strips and turn off the power strips when the equipment is not in use.
- Eliminate, or deactivate, extra freezers or refrigerators if you can, especially if they spend the summer outdoors or in a garage. Free refrigerator recycling may be available in some areas.
- If you have a pool: consider slowly reducing pool filtration time by 30 minute increments daily. Keep on reducing the time as long as the water appears clean. You may find you only need to run your pool filter six hours a day. Install a timer to control the length of time that the pool pump cycles on.
If you have questions, or need your A/C unit serviced - give Fix My AC a call today - 1-800-673-4922.
This picture is a close up of the electric connections at the compressor which is inside the condenser or A/C unit. Why should you care?
This type of failure happens time to time. It sometimes causes the whole compressor to fail. But many times it does not. So if the reason why your A/C stopped working is burnt electric-wire endings make sure that these get replaced before giving up on your whole unit. Or better yet. Call Fix My AC Inc for a second opinion.
In this particular case, we tested and replaced the electric endings with special connections. We were able to activate the compressor and got this client’s over 20-year-old A/C working again. Our reward for this repair was the look of relief on the client’s face when we announced the good news to him.
“IF IT CAN BE FIXED, WE WILL FIX IT.”
Call us to have your Air Conditioning unit checked out – 1-800-673-4922
Scheduling a spring maintenance appointment with Fix My AC, your Orange County CA HVAC Professional can ensure that your HVAC system is ready to go when warmer temperatures arrive. Spring is an ideal time to perform home maintenance tasks in preparation for summer fun ahead. Additionally, by scheduling your appointment off-peak for repair and replacement seasons, you can often receive faster service for your system.
Here are four of the most important tasks to include in your spring AC system maintenance routine.
Trim Grass and Brush: Trimming away tall grass, weeds and brush from around your outside condenser unit can reduce the risk of overheating and failure for this equipment. Rinsing off the condenser with a garden hose can remove dust and debris that may have built up on the unit over the winter months. A little attention now can pay off in improved performance when the mercury starts to rise this summer.
Replace the Air Filter: Regular replacement of your air filter is essential to protect your indoor air quality and to prevent unexpected breakdowns this summer. Over time, air filters break down and release fibers into your HVAC system. By replacing these components as part of your maintenance routine, you can enjoy cleaner, healthier indoor air while reducing the risk of damage to your heating and cooling equipment. Fix My AC, your Orange County, CA air conditioning service professionals can often provide expert guidance on the right air filter for your cooling system.
Clean Your Registers: The vents and registers that deliver conditioned air to your home can accumulate a thick layer of dust in a relatively short time. Dusting and vacuuming these air vents can reduce the amount of dust and particulate matter in your home. If you notice an excessive buildup of dust, however, it may be time to schedule a comprehensive duct cleaning service to ensure the healthiest indoor air for your family. Dust and debris in your ductwork can also add to the workload of your HVAC system, causing it to break down more quickly. By keeping registers clear of debris and blockages caused by dust, furnishings and closed vents, you can help your air conditioner to work more efficiently and to provide optimal comfort this summer.
Inspect Your Thermostat: Your home thermostat are the brains and control center for your entire HVAC system. Ensuring that this device is performing properly is critical to your indoor comfort this summer. If your home is still equipped with a manual thermostat, it may be time to consider an upgrade to a modern programmable model. Some of the key features of these advanced electronic devices include the following:
- The ability to program temperature levels to correspond with your family’s needs an activities throughout the day and night
- Control over temperature levels through a centralized interface or online from anywhere with a secure Internet connection
- Lower overall costs for cooling your home
By programming your new thermostat to allow higher temperatures during daytime hours when no one is at home and to cool down your house when you are due back from work or school, you can potentially save a significant amount on your cooling bill this summer.
While these maintenance tasks can help you get a good head start on your preparations for summer, they cannot substitute for a professional check-up from the experts at Fix My AC in Orange County, CA. As a leading Orange County and Irvine air conditioning repair provider, we offer comprehensive maintenance, repair and replacement services to keep your family cool and comfortable during hot Orange County, CA summers.
By scheduling your check-up and tune-up today, you can avoid the early summer rush and ensure that your system is up and running as soon as the temperatures start to rise.
Give us a call at 1-800-673-4922 to schedule your spring maintenance visit today. We look forward to helping you stay comfortable this summer.
HVAC systems are the lifeblood of a commercial building’s systems and their efficient operation is critical to protect owner investment and occupant comfort.
At Fix My AC, Inc, we are more than a chiller service company. We’re a world-class organization that offers maintenance and repair services for all commercial HVAC components.
So if you are looking for Orange County Commercial HVAC service – you have arrived at the right place!
How Do I Know My System Needs Maintenance?
It is not always obvious when your commercial HVAC needs a tune–up or repair service. One way to prevent repairs and keep your system running smoothly is with annual maintenance service. Maintenance is the most effective preventive measure you can take with you HVAC system. If you have not had maintenance performed on your HVAC system in the past year, it is important that you call to schedule a visit as soon as possible. Regular maintenance ensures not only that your system is working efficiently, but that it is also working properly. There are a lot of components working together to keep your commercial space comfortable. A problem with any one of those components is enough to compromise efficiency and could cause needless wear and tear or damage to your system.
Are you looking for maintenance, repair, upgrades, or replacement of your current commercial HVAC system?
The service organization of Fix My AC., Inc., brings flexible, energy-saving solutions to help you control your maintenance and operational costs. Allow our team of service representatives and factory-trained technicians to put their ideas to work for you.
It is our goal with each heating and cooling service project we take on to provide you and your staff with a comfortable work environment that promotes clean air and energy savings. Our HVAC preventative maintenance services include: heating and air conditioning, rooftop units, boilers, chillers, air handlers, heat pumps and indoor air quality to commercial and industrial facilities across the greater Orange County CA area.
HVAC services we provide:
- Complete start-up services
- Comprehensive maintenance agreements and repair services
- System installations
From high-rises and hotels to data centers, manufacturing plants, schools and hospitals, we serve a diverse range of commercial and industrial facilities worldwide. You can count on Fix My AC., Inc., for honest, reliable, experienced, and innovative solutions.
Call us at 1-800-673-4922 for your Orange County Commercial HVAC service! Click here to learn more: http://fixmyhvac.com/Commercial/
Orange County AC Service… or Air Conditioning Service…. Fix My AC can help!
- Check furnace system controls and thermostat. This will insure that the starting cycle is working properly so the unit keeps you comfortable when you are home and saves energy (and money) when you are away.
- Tighten the electrical connections and lubricate all HVAC moving parts. Faulty electrical connections and lack of adequate lubrication can reduce the life of the unit components. An improperly operating system can also cost you in the increased amount of electricity you use.
- Make sure the condensate drain is working properly. Not only can a plugged drain or pipe cause water damage, it can also affect the humidity levels in your home.
- Clean the evaporator and air conditioning coils. Dirty coils can cost you money. They reduce the system’s ability to cool the home so it must operate longer, leading to higher energy bills. Longer operating times also reduce the system’s life and increase the amount of energy needed to operate.
- Check air conditioner refrigerant level. Too much or too little refrigerant will affect system efficiency, increasing energy costs and system life.
- Make sure blower components are properly adjusted. ENERGY STAR® guidelines indicate that airflow problems can reduce system efficiencies by up to 15 percent!
- Change air filters on a regular basis. Dirty filters reduce system efficiency and increase costs.
Proper homeowner and professional maintenance will allow your system to do its job and save you money. The average West Virginia homeowner spends $2,168 annually on home energy needs. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) estimates that heating and cooling operations account for up to 74 percent of this total.
Orange County AC Service… or Air Conditioning Service…. Fix My AC can help!