Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning Blog

Category: Heating

Heating Repairs

Wouldn’t it be great to invest in that heater that will never give you any problems and will never require repair service? Yes, it would be. Unfortunately, there is one major problem with this plan. That heater does not exist. If you find a heating contractor telling you otherwise, then you’ve found a heating contractor that cannot be trusted. While investing in a good heater and scheduling routine maintenance will keep repair needs minimal, there’s just no avoiding them entirely.

What you can do, however, is keep any such repair needs as minor as possible. How? By scheduling your heating repairs at the very first sign of trouble with your system. The longer that you wait to have your system repaired when it is in need, the worse off your system is going to be. Now, how do you go about doing this? You learn to recognize early signs of trouble. That’s what today’s blog is all about.

 

Your System Is Costing too Much to Run

One sure sign that there is something wrong with your heater is a steady creep upward in heating costs. However, there is a big difference between something being wrong with your heater and the actual need for heating repair in Loveland, CO. It could be that you have a dirty air filter in your system restricting airflow, for instance.  That will drive up operating costs, but it’s not something you need professionally repaired. If you continue to run a heater with a very dirty filter in it,  however, you may find yourself in need of repairs!

If there’s not an obvious solution to the problem, unfortunately, there may be any number of issues requiring repairs to get your heater and its efficiency back on track. Our team is trained to diagnose problems with your heater accurately, and we’ll make sure that any problems we find are resolved completely. We do it the right way, the first time, every time.

Your System Makes Strange New Sounds

If you hear the occasional sound from your heater, there is probably nothing to worry about. Your heater may make a bit of noise when it cycles on. Maybe its ductwork contracts and expands as it heats up and cools down. There are definitely noises that fall within the confines of normal operational sounds.

Then there are noises that can’t be explained away as being part of normal operating sounds. Grinding, screeching, booming, etc. If your system really starts to make strange sounds that it hasn’t in the past, don’t just do your best to ignore it. Schedule repairs with our team right away.

Your Heater Won’t Start Up

That’s a pretty clear sign that something is wrong, right? First things first, check your breaker box. It could be that the flip of a breaker switch is all you need to resolve the problem.

If all is well there, then call us in. It could be a faulty thermostat, it could be that there is a fuel delivery problem. Whatever the issue, our professional heating technicians will get to the bottom of it.

Schedule your heating services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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Furnace Running Properly

Make no mistake about it—you are going to require professional furnace repair in Wellington, CO, at some point. No amount of planning or precaution is going to completely prevent the risk of problems developing. That being said, you can take some measures to ensure that any problems with your furnace are kept as few and far between as possible. That’s what we’re going to be focusing on today. Our technicians have the tips and tricks you’re looking for!

The truth of the matter is that there is really no “trick” about it. If you take good care of your furnace, your furnace is going to take good care of you. It’s just a matter of educating yourself about what your furnace actually needs from you. This is a combination of doing the things that you should do for your furnace, and not doing the things that are best left to trained professionals. Feel free to reach out with any questions.

Get Your Furnace Off to the Right Start

We know that most homeowners, even those that are pretty DIY-driven, wouldn’t actually try to install a furnace on their own. However, not doing it on your own is not the same as not doing it right. While you may well know a handyperson in the neighborhood or have one in your family, this is a job for qualified professionals only. Not even the most skilled handyperson can install a furnace if they’re not trained and licensed appropriately.

When a furnace is first installed in a home, there is a whole lot to consider. This includes the sizing of the furnace to optimize performance and efficiency levels. the layout of the ductwork to be installed, electrical wiring matters, and much more. It’s a very complex job, and only a heating professional can be trusted to do it right every step of the way.

Maintain Proper Airflow

Wait, what? I thought I’m not supposed to work on my furnace myself?  

No, you’re not. And maintaining proper airflow doesn’t require that you do so. It simply requires that you change your air filter regularly to ensure that your system is not fighting against excessive airflow resistance, and that you don’t obstruct the registers in the house.

Changing your air filter is actually the best thing that you yourself can do for your system, and it’s incredibly easy. As for the registers, just make sure that you’re not pushing your furniture up against them by accident. And, if you’re looking to maintain different temperatures in different areas of your home, make sure that you talk to us about zoning your system—don’t just close off registers in an attempt to achieve the desired effect.

Schedule Routine Maintenance

This is what it all comes down to. Schedule annual heating maintenance to keep your system in the best working condition possible. Nothing is better for your heater, furnace or otherwise, than giving it a clean bill of health through professional maintenance from a qualified heating technician.

Schedule your heating services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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 Gas or Electric

Ah, yes, the age-old question of which is better—the gas or the electric furnace.  Those of you that followed a link to this post because you’re looking for a simple, clear cut answer to this question may be a bit disappointed in what we have to tell you.  That is that both have their pros and cons. Don’t worry, though. We’ve got a lot more to share with you than that initial response. It’s a more complex question than you may realize.

Let’s first reframe the way that you’re thinking about this question, to begin with. Choosing a new heater of any kind isn’t about choosing the best heater. It’s about choosing the heater that’s best for you. There’s a big difference between the two. Not only will we make sure that you have the right furnace in place for your needs, but we can handle everything from your furnace installation to routine maintenance and furnace repair in Loveland, CO.

 

Natural Gas Is Typically Preferred

Again, we’re not going to say that natural gas is the “best” option, but it is hard to argue against the benefits of using a natural gas furnace to heat your home—and natural gas as a fuel source in general. Natural gas is quite clean-burning for a fossil fuel, it is piped directly into homes, and can be used for a number of different applications.

There is also the matter of affordability. We’re going to talk about why efficiency ratings can be a bit misleading, and why you shouldn’t necessarily equate them with affordability in terms of operating. Not only does natural gas burn quite efficiently, with modern furnaces really getting a lot of out of the fuel, but the gas itself is quite affordable. So, what about electric models?

Electricity Has Its Own Benefits

Remember, not every home has access to natural gas. That isn’t the only reason one would ever turn to an electric furnace, but it is a major motivator. The use of natural gas necessitates some proximity to a natural gas line, and that’s not a guarantee in every area.

If electricity can do the same thing as natural gas when heating your home, and if it’s already in pretty much every home anyway, why not just choose electricity to start? Well, because it costs more to heat a home with electricity than natural gas. While electric furnaces are incredibly efficient, because they don’t lose heat via flue gases the way that gas furnaces do, the cost of electricity is also considerably higher than natural gas. That’s why it’s possible to have a more efficient system that still costs more to operate.

If you have any questions about any of this, or if you are ready to schedule your furnace repairs, tune-up, or installation with qualified professionals that you can trust to do the job right, just let us know.

Schedule your furnace services with the pros here at Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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Schedule Your Heating Tune

A lot of homeowners feel that taking care of their properties and the systems within those properties is their own personal responsibility. That may be true, but handling all of the services that those systems require is not something that most homeowners can or should attempt to handle personally. If you’re not an HVAC professional, for instance, then you should leave your heating tune-up in Loveland, CO, to our team. HVAC maintenance is a necessity, and it requires a professional’s expertise.

You’ll find plenty of that when you work with our staff. We service heaters of all kinds, and we’ll make sure that your home heating system is ready to keep your family comfortable successfully throughout the coldest days and nights of the year. Colorado can be quite beautiful during the winter season, but it’s a lot easier to get out and enjoy a day on the slopes when you know that you’ve got a warm, cozy house to return to.

 

Why You Can’t Pass Up Heating Maintenance

Simply put, if you value your comfort,  then you absolutely need to schedule routine heating maintenance in Loveland, CO. Be sure to work with a member of our team to get the greatest possible return on your investment in heating maintenance. The benefits cannot be overvalued.

  • Improved heating efficiency, which means that you’ll be able to keep your heating bills as low as possible throughout the coldest time of the year.
  • Improved performance quality, meaning that you’ll actually be paying less for a better performance from your heater.
  • Improved reliability, which will keep repair needs as few and far between as possible.
  • Improved system lifespan, meaning that you’ll get the fullest service life possible from your system.
  • Improved safety, meaning that you won’t have to worry about risks caused by negligence when running your heater.

Why You Need a Professional to Do the Job Right

Well, so that you can enjoy all of the above benefits! If you try to tune your heating system up on your own, your best case scenario is doing a subpar job of it. Worst case scenario, and unfortunately a very likely outcome, is that you’ll wind up putting your heater, your comfort, and the safety of everyone in your home at risk. Make the smart choice, and let our team handle your home heating maintenance needs.

It’s just too complicated a service to carry out on your own. You can change your own air filter and you can keep the outdoor unit of a heat pump clear of any debris. Beyond that, however, a pro needs to do the job. From testing relays to ensuring the safe delivery of fuel throughout the system for combustion, we’ll cover every detail. When you work with us, your heater will work optimally in order to optimize your comfort all throughout the heating season. Be sure to enroll in our maintenance program to get the best maintenance experience possible!

Schedule your heating services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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Heater Running Consistently

There are a lot of different problems that may develop with your home heating system. If you think the fact that your heater is starting up and functioning at all means that all is well, then think again! Not every problem is going to result in an immediate breakdown. There are plenty of problems that can do damage over time even as your heater is still technically running. You cannot afford to ignore any signs of trouble for this exact reason.

One huge red flag that you should be aware of is short cycling. Short cycling is what we call it when a heater (or an AC, for that matter) starts up alright, but then runs only briefly before shutting back down. That heater is then going to start back up, only to complete its cycle in rapid succession once more. Why should you be concerned if the system is starting and stopping, though? Well, let’s take a closer look.

You’re Definitely Wasting Money

How do we know that? Because if you’re running a short cycling heater, then you’re definitely wasting energy! It takes more energy to get a heater up and running than it does to keep a heater up and running. That’s true of any mechanical system. So, if your system is starting and stopping over and over again rapidly, it is costing you more to run than it should. That’s not the only potential way in which your short cycling system is costing you, though.

Your System Is at Risk!

All of that starting and stopping may not cause an immediate breakdown, but you still want immediate HVAC services in Loveland, CO. Why? Because your system is suffering excessive wear and tear that it otherwise would not. All of that wear and tear will further degrade energy efficiency over time. However, it is also going to wind up increasing the risk of operational problems and, eventually, a breakdown. You’re  going to wind up paying for repairs that likely could have been avoided, had you fixed the problem to begin with.

You’re Not as Comfortable

What’s worse than overpaying to heat a home during the coldest time of the year? Living uncomfortably anyway, despite the amount that you’re paying to heat your home. It’s very frustrating, but that’s what’s going to happen if you continue to use a short cycling heater to heat your house. It just is not going to do as effective a job of it as a heater that is running in full, complete cycles.

There are a few different reasons why a heater may short cycle. It may be as simple as a very dirty air filter that is causing the system to overheat. However, you could also have a faulty thermostat or thermocouple. You could even have a refrigerant leak in a heat pump, which will literally destroy that system if you don’t have the problem addressed in a timely manner. When in doubt, reach out to a member of our team to get your heater back in proper working condition.

Schedule your heating services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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Air Heating Tip

We’re deep into the winter season at this point, and there’s no doubt that you’ve been running your heating system regularly for a couple of months, now. That’s not going to change any time soon, though, so don’t think you can start to let your heater slide just because spring is coming up in the distance. There is a lot of ground to cover before we get there, and you don’t want to put your heater’s operation at risk in the meantime.

If you use a forced air heating system, meaning either a heat pump or a furnace, then there is one important maintenance task that you need to handle on your own. It is one that your technician will handle during your routine tune-ups, but one that requires action more than once a year. We’re talking about changing your air filter. It’s the simplest and one of the most effective ways in which to get the best performance possible from your heater in Timnath, CO.

 

Why Is a Fresh Filter So Important?

Some homeowners think that because the indoor air quality in their homes is not terrible means that their standard heating air filter is doing its job just fine. The problem with this, of course, is that the air filter in your home heating system is not there to improve air quality throughout your house! The purpose of this standard air filter is, in fact, to protect the heating system itself. This filter is not efficient enough to improve air quality throughout your home. This task requires a more efficient, designated air filtration system.

Okay, then what is the problem with a dirty air filter? Well, problems, really! There are quite a few of them, and you may be surprised at just how detrimental a dirty air filter can be. Here’s how a dirty filter in your heater can affect your system, your comfort, and your budget:

  • Increased operating costs. If your filter is very dirty, then your heater is going to have to work harder than it otherwise should in order to heat your home. That drives up heating costs, leaving you with higher energy bills when the time comes to actually pay for the comfort that you deserve in your home.
  • Reduced heating output. You know what’s worse than paying too much for heating your home? Paying too much for too little heating output in return. That’s what you risk when you run your system with a very dirty filter in place, though. Your system will struggle to distribute heat throughout your home effectively, leaving you in less comfort than you deserve.
  • Added strain on the system. When your system works harder than it should have to in order to heat your home, it is going to accrue more wear and tear than it otherwise would. In fact, the added strain on the system may cause it to overheat and short-cycle, which drives up costs and adds even more wear and tear on your heater!

Keep your filter fresh, and contact Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning with any questions that you may have. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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Yes, we would love to tell you how you can Trouble with your Furnacecompletely avoid problems with your heating system. No, we cannot tell you how you can completely avoid problems with your heating system. Nobody can. Well, nobody honestly can. Why not? Because there is no such thing as a 100% reliable heater! If you find someone telling you otherwise, then you need to talk to somebody else. Don’t give such dishonest individuals your attention, let alone your money! We can, however, tell you how to spot signs of heating system trouble early on.

It may seem like a weak consolation prize, but catching problems early is definitely in your best interest. There are plenty of warning signs that you may notice, provided that you know what it is that you are looking for. If and when you notice any of these signs of trouble with your furnace, contact a member of our team right away. You can always count on our staff for exceptional HVAC services in Windsor.

How’s the Heating Output?

Okay, so this is an obvious one, but trust us—a lot of homeowners ignore obvious signs of trouble so long as their furnaces are working “well enough.” If you ask us, though, well enough is never good enough for our clients. So don’t put up with subpar heating output!

Does it seem like the air coming from your vents just isn’t warm enough, despite the fact that the thermostat is set appropriately? Are there cold spots in your home, while other areas are perfectly comfortable? Anything from combustion issues to leaky ductwork and problems with fans could be to blame. Our technicians diagnose problems accurately before resolving them.

Keep an Eye on Heating Costs

Homeowners can ignore a lot, but they tend to take notice when it’s their wallets that are taking the hit! If the heater is costing an arm and a leg to heat your home, but it used to do so quite affordably, then it is likely that you have a problem setting back your energy efficiency.

Unless you are happy to overpay to heat your home, you’ll want to have the issue resolved as soon as possible. And don’t tell yourself that it’s not that expensive, that repairs aren’t that necessary. The longer you avoid the issue, the more costly those repairs are going to be down the road.

Listen for Signs of Trouble, Too

It’s not all about keeping your eyes open and looking for signs of trouble. You may hear signs of trouble before you see anything is wrong. This is the case with heaters making strange new sounds, or even those making the same old sounds but at much louder levels than usual.

When you hear your heater banging or clanging, grinding or screeching, it is time to give us a call. Your heater is trying to tell you something, and that something is that it is struggling in some way! Ignoring its cries of duress will come back to haunt you when you finally decide it’s worth calling a technician.

Schedule your furnace repairs with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning, the company you can trust.

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Oh man, I’m not ready to start thinking about Up Your Heaterwinter yet. Come on, the heat of the summer months is still burning off! Why do you have to be like this! 

Because, sometimes, the truth hurts.

Look, we understand the thought of winter doesn’t appeal to all of you out there. And even those of us that love to hit the slopes will admit that,  sometimes, the cold can get to be a little much. But that’s the entire point!

Scheduling heating maintenance now means less hassle then, when you really need your heating system the most. By putting your heating in Loveland, CO in our hands, you can rest assured in knowing that some of the finest technicians out there are looking out for your comfort when the heating season arrives. Just remember that heating tune-ups cannot be completed by anyone other than skilled, trained professionals. So call today, and read on to learn more about what heating maintenance has to offer.

Why Hire Professionals?

To keep warranties intact, first of all. To protect your equipment. To protect yourself. Pretty much any reason you can think of. Are we saying there is nothing you can do to help maintain your heating system. No. You can change your air filter regularly. You can keep the ducts unobstructed. You can clear snow away from the outdoor unit of heat pumps. But you cannot crack open the heater and try to complete a thorough tune-up.

This type of job is much, much more complicated than many homeowners seem to realize. You need to clean electrical contacts, test voltage, tighten connections, lubricate all moving parts, replace worn components, test relays and controls, and so much more. It is a job that only trained, experienced professionals can handle, and any damages caused by DIY service attempts are only going to leave you on the hook for the resulting repair costs.

Why Do It At All?

Because there is no better way to keep your heater up and running reliably. Your heating system, regardless of type or make/model, incurs a lot of wear and tear over the course of the heating season. Left unaddressed, this wear and tear is going to make your heating system much more susceptible to problems and, eventually, breakdowns.

Of course, you don’t just get a more reliable heating experience by scheduling routine maintenance. You can also pay less for a better heating experience! How? Because a properly maintained heating system is the only type of heater that is going to function at peak efficiency levels. The only thing worse than failing to heat your home effectively and reliably is overpaying for such a lousy experience. When you remain diligent about scheduling routine heating maintenance each year, you won’t have to worry about such problems. It won’t increase the heater’s overall efficiency rating, but it will keep it working as close to its peak efficiency as possible.

Schedule your heating services with Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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heating repairs

When you live in a place like Colorado, it goes without saying that you need to invest in a great home heating system. It should also go without saying—although we say it a lot—that the best way in which to keep your heater functioning at peak performance and efficiency levels is to schedule routine heating maintenance service. Unfortunately, it also goes without saying that even the best heating equipment that is expertly tuned-up by qualified professionals will, eventually, require professional heating repair.

When you need heating repairs in Loveland, CO, you need look no further than the professional technicians on our staff. We are not only going to diagnose the problem accurately, we’ll also fix it right the first time. That way, you can get your heater back to functioning at the level that you deserve. Of course, in order to schedule any necessary repairs, you need to recognize the need for such repairs in the first place!

 

So Keep Your Ears Open!

Okay, keep your eyes open may be the more common expression, but listening to your heating system could help you to recognize early signs of trouble. You want to listen not only for louder than usual sounds when you are heating your home, but also entirely new, unusual sounds developing. What types of sounds are we talking about?

  • Screeching sounds. If you hear your heater screeching at you like an angry owl, then it is likely that a metal component is rubbing up against another. That shouldn’t be happening if this sound is the result. You may also need a worn belt replaced. When dealing with such problems, it’s best to do so before something breaks entirely and more extensive repairs are needed.
  • Grinding sounds. Is your system short of grinding to a halt entirely, but grinding nonetheless? It’s possible that there is not sufficient lubrication on some moving parts in your heater. Sure, it may be running, but that friction is also generating heat—and not the type that you want! Not only are the parts in question wearing down, but you’re definitely losing efficiency and putting a lot of strain on the system that greatly increases the risk of other problems developing.
  • Clanging sounds. If you hear a clanging or banging sound coming from your heating system, then you could have a blower mount that is not level. The fan may be hitting its casing. Over time, this not only damages the components in question, but will seriously inhibit the ability of a forced air heating system to distribute heated air throughout the house.

Ultimately, heeding these warning signs is the responsibility of the homeowner. We don’t expect you, and certainly would not advise that you try, to diagnose or fix any existing problems on your own. You do need to recognize them for what they are, however: cries for help from your home heating system! Schedule service with us when you encounter such sounds coming from your heater.

Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning: Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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Gas or Electric Furnace

It is a question as old as time—should I use a gas furnace or an electric furnace? Okay, so that may be something of an overstatement, but that doesn’t change that it is, in fact, a very common question. And it is one that we cannot answer definitively for all of our readers here and now. Why not? Because both types of furnaces have their pros and cons, and a number of factors must be considered in each individual case.

There is no such thing as a completely perfect furnace for everyone, or a perfect furnace in general. All users will require furnace repairs in Windsor, CO at some point, for instance. Today, we’ll take this opportunity to explore some of the benefits of using a furnace, and we’ll also look at some factors to consider when deciding whether a gas or electric model is right for you. So read on, and be sure to reach out if you have any questions or are ready for outstanding furnace services.

Heat Distribution Is the Same

Regardless of which type of furnace you use,  gas or electric, you’ll still be heating air directly. Once that air is heated, then you’ll be distributing that heated air throughout your house via a system of ductwork. This is something of a benefit in its own right. If you use a whole-house air conditioning system in order to cool your home, then you are already using ductwork. That means the furnace and the AC can share the same distribution system.

Electricity Is Efficient, But Still More Expensive

Some homeowners mistake “efficient” as meaning the same thing as affordable. In reality, however, you’re talking about two separate issues. Electricity is the more expensive of the these two resources. However, electric furnaces are also the more efficient option. What does this mean for you?

When you use an electric furnace, you are not losing any heat to flue gases. That means that you’re working at nearly 100% efficiency, but could still wind up paying more to heat your home than you would if using more affordable natural gas. However, electric furnaces also tend to be cheaper to install and purchase. Not every home has gas hookups in place, either, or even available as a possibility.

Natural Gas and Electricity Are Both Versatile

So chances are that you use electricity in your home. It’s a ubiquitous resource in this day and age. Does the fact that you have electricity already at your disposal mean you shouldn’t bother connecting your home to a natural gas line? Definitely not.

While electricity is necessary in your home for lights, powering the fans of certain heating systems, and water heaters, etc., it doesn’t have to be the only resource that you use! Mixing and matching is typically the way to go. We use our heaters enough in this part of the country that it makes sense to opt for the more affordable options in most cases. If you have access to natural gas, we’d suggest taking advantage of that. You can also use it to heat water for use throughout your home, and to fuel your oven/range, and other appliances.

Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Big enough to serve, small enough to care.

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