ACI Northwest Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Heating’

5 Signs Your Heat Pump Needs Help

Monday, January 4th, 2021

close-up-view-of-ductless-systemIt worked hard all summer to keep your home cool and now you are relying on it to keep you warm in the coming months. Your heat pump has a big job to do and most of the time it is up to the task. There will come a day, however, when this usually reliable system isn’t as helpful as it should be. When that happens, it’s a good idea to reach out to a professional for guidance—you may need to schedule repairs for this Coeur d’Alene, ID heating system, and the sooner that is done the better off you’ll be.

At this point, you may be asking, “But how do I know my heat pump needs repairs?” A good question, one we’re happy to answer. We have provided some indicators that will tell you it is time to schedule heat pump repairs with our team. We’re ready when you are.

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The Differences Between Radiant and Forced-Air Heaters

Monday, December 7th, 2020

woman sitting in her home with holiday lights on a tree in the foregroundWinter is right around the corner and if you’ve been here for even one season in Idaho, you know they are nothing to mess with. Sunny cool days can quickly switch places with wind and snowfall. Whether the sun is out or the snow is piling up, you will want to make sure that you can keep your home warm when you need it the most.

Choosing a good heater for your house is going to make all the difference in maintaining a comfortable indoor environment. But there is more than one type of heater out there for you. Let us give you some extra information on what differentiates radiant heating in Sandpoint, ID, and forced-air heating—and what makes both of them great options.

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Is It Time For a New Heater?

Monday, November 9th, 2020

cute dog under the warm grey blanketWhen you get up in the morning and you want to take the chill out of the air to make breakfast prep a little more bearable, it shouldn’t require much more than just turning on your heater. However, if your Spokane, WA heating system is acting up, you may discover the opposite is your reality. You might run your heater and discover it makes no difference for your home. Alternatively, your system may not respond at all.

Your first instinct may be to say, “Well I guess I need to get my heater repaired again.” But wait. How many repairs have you needed in the past few years? If the answer is more than one, there is a chance that, rather than a repair, you actually need a heater replacement.

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4 Ways To Reduce Your Home Heating Bill

Monday, October 28th, 2019

cold-man-no-heatThe temperatures are dropping, and our desire for warmth and cozy spaces is increasing. Right now, many people are likely switching on their heaters to make their home a haven from the chilly outdoor temperatures.

But maybe hand hesitates over the thermostat because the mental math in your head is saying the heating bill isn’t worth the warmth. If you are one of those individuals who would rather wrap themselves in a blanket than turn on the heat, we may be able to help you.

Believe it or not there are a few different ways to reduce your home heating bill. One of those is, of course, scheduling regular maintenance for your heater, but we will touch more on this subject later.

For now, have some helpful tips so you can enjoy a warm home this season.

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Boost Your Heating Efficiency and Spend Less

Monday, February 18th, 2019

gas-powered-furnace-systemWhen it comes to heating in Spokane, WA, you need a system that will perform as effectively and efficiently as possible. Considering that most of our year is cool, you don’t want to be stuck without a fully functioning heating system in place. You also don’t want to be stuck paying for much higher energy bills than you should be. One way to ensure this isn’t the case is by scheduling annual maintenance for your heater, which we hope you did in the fall. Another way is by following up on repair needs ASAP.

We have some good news, too. Boosting your heating efficiency doesn’t just require you to invest in what can be costly HVAC services. There are simple things you can do around the house to boost that efficiency (and therefore, the cost effectiveness) of your heater. Keep reading to learn more!

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When Is It Time to Replace Your Heater?

Monday, February 19th, 2018

cute dog under the warm grey blanketIf it were up to you, your Spokane, WA heating system would last forever. You’d be able to get by with repair after repair and never need to replace it. Unfortunately, this is simply not the case. Sooner or later, you will need a new heater. But how do you know when that time has come? You certainly don’t want to wait until it just shuts down on you all together, in the middle of one of our coldest winter days.

Fortunately, our team is here to help you make an educated decision on the matter. You can contact us any time when you think your furnace or heating system is reaching the end of its lifecycle. Our team will look at a variety of factors, help you decide if you can get by with another repair for now or if replacement would be more economical, and suggest system models that fit your lifestyle and needs.

Without further ado, some signs that it is, in fact, time to replace that old heater:

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Don’t Skip This Step When Selecting a New Heater

Monday, November 9th, 2015

When you are shopping around for a new appliance, like a dishwasher or a clothes dryer, you have some criteria in mind for the system you want. You need something within your price range. But you also need the system to perform well. It is also a good idea to look for a system with a high efficiency rating or the ENERGY STAR seal. But when it comes to selecting a new heating system, there’s one thing you must know before you select a new unit.

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5 Easy Ways to Save Electricity Around the Home

Monday, November 2nd, 2015

Looking for ways to save money on your energy bills without sacrificing your home comfort? Follow these 5 simply tips that can help you to cut down your bills. Contact our friendly helpful technicians for more information!

  • Replace your lightbulbs with energy efficient compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs. Check the labels at the store and make sure you’ve chosen efficient CFL bulbs that are the right size for the fixture you are using. They may be more costly than other bulbs at first, but they can last decades and will use much less electricity over the years.
  • Wash with cold water. Cold water can get your laundry and dishes clean just as well as hot water, and you can save money on your water heating bills—up to 40 cents per load of laundry.
  • Use a power strip. Plug in your electronics to a power strip, and shut off the power button on the power strip when you are done using them.
  • Learn to use your programmable thermostat. Many homeowners are unsure of how to use their homes’ programmable thermostats for maximum energy savings. Locate the manual for your thermostat (try searching online!), or call a technician for help understanding the settings. In the summer, find the warmest temperature that is the most comfortable for everyone in your family—experts recommend 78° F—and keep it at this setting most of the time. Program the thermostat 10° higher for when you are away or asleep. Keep it at 68° F in the winter.
  • Change or clean your air filter. The air filter in your heating and air conditioning system helps to keep your air clean and stops debris from interfering with system operation. When it’s too dirty, air may be unable to flow into the system, which means it will have to use a lot of energy in an attempt to cool or heat your home. Change or clean the filter (if it is reusable) once a month for better efficiency.

ACI Northwest is here to help with your home comfort needs or concerns. Please do not hesitate to contact us for helpful advice or service in Coeur d’Alene and the surrounding areas.

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When Should I Replace My Heating System?

Friday, November 28th, 2014

As a homeowner, you know a time will come when you will have to replace your heating system. Though you may have an approximate estimation of when that time will be, however, it is sometimes difficult to be sure. How can you tell whether you need to replace your heater, or simply repair it? Let’s take a look at some of the most obvious signs.

Age

Any time something goes wrong with your heater, the easiest way to tell if it needs repair or replacement is to consider its age. Generally speaking, heating systems that are younger than 15 years old can probably last for a few more years. Systems over 15 years old can likely be replaced for the same amount of money it would cost to keep repairing them, which brings us to our next point.

Frequency of Repairs

All heating systems experience the need for repairs every once in a while. However, one thing you’ll need to pay attention to is the frequency with which your system breaks down. One or two repairs a year is a fairly common occurrence for most heating systems. Any more than that is a good indication that your heating system is, quite frankly, wearing out. This is especially true when taken with the advanced age of the system.

Increase in Heating Cost

As wear and tear begins to accumulate in your heating system, you will experience a gradual decline in your heater’s ability to do its job. Before parts actually start to break in your system, you will likely experience an increase in your monthly heating bill. Of course, wear and tear occurs any time you start your heating system, regardless of its age or condition. The older your heater is, however, the more likely that the burden of years of use will have a greater effect on the various parts in your system.

If you think you might need to replace your heating system, call ACI Northwest. Our HVAC technicians provide professional heating services throughout the entire Spokane area.

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What Is the Difference Between a Furnace and a Boiler?

Friday, October 10th, 2014

The most common types of heating systems—both of which have warmed homes and businesses for well over a century and a half—are furnaces and boilers. Chances are high that you have one or the other working to keep your home cozy during the winter. The two systems have little in common, however, except that they can use similar energy sources. Otherwise, they have completely different methods of providing heat for a building, and each requires specialists to install, repair, and maintain it.

If you are looking to have new heating system in installation, your choice may come down to a boiler or furnace. The one that will work best for your home heating will depend on many factors, and you should always rely on professionals to handle the installation so you end up with the right heater for your needs. Call ACI Northwest and put your trust in our many years of experience finding heating solutions for the greater Coeur d’Alene and Spokane area.

Furnace: Forced-Air Heating

The principle of a furnace is “forced-air heating,” which means that the system heats up air and then distributes it with a blower through a ventilation system. How the furnace heats up the air in its cabinet depends on its fuel source. The most common furnace type uses natural gas piped into the home. The furnace burns the natural gas to create a hot combustion gas. This gas enters a metal heat exchanger, which then heats the air blown past it and into the ductwork. The cooled-down combustion gas safely vents outside through a flue.

A popular alternative to gas is electricity. In these units, electric coils in a series of heating elements glow hot as current runs through them. The heating elements raise the temperature of the air through resistance heating, and the blower sends the air into the ventilation system.

Boiler: Hydronic Radiant Heating

Boilers do not use forced air or ductwork to provide warmth. Instead, they use heated water—and in some cases, steam—distributed through pipes to various terminal points in a home that then radiate heat waves into rooms. Boilers often use natural gas to create the heat to raise the temperature of the water in their water tanks, although some rely on electrical heating elements within the tank itself. Radiant heating in general is cleaner than forced-air heating because it does not require ductwork that can contain dust and dirt that will mix into the air stream.

Which One Is Best For My Home?

Both systems have advantages and disadvantages: furnaces can achieve high levels of heating, while boilers tend to use energy more efficiently and can last longer. If your home already has a set of ducts, it’s probably easiest to install a furnace. For a newer home without ducts, a boiler is an attractive possibility. The best way to know for certain is to work with a heating professional, who can measure the best way to efficiently and effectively provide comfort for your home.

ACI Northwest has a team ready to help with your needs for heating services in Coeur d’Alene, WA. Call us today to help choose between a furnace and a boiler.

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