3 Common Thermostats Problems and their solutions

Thermostats are of great help. They not only help save energy but also help prolong the life of HVAC appliances by not allowing them to run 24/7. But everything that gives ease sometimes also causes unexpected unease. In the case of Thermostats, although the latest makes and models of Thermostats particularly the Smart Thermostats are easy to use and easy to install, there yet arise issues that leave an individual both irritated and bewildered. Just like some HVAC noises and HVAC odours are of serious nature and some totally normal, the Thermostat issues can also be of one of the two categories. Some are serious problems that require a professional's help, however, the rest are not worrisome and are also easy to troubleshoot. We are about to reveal solutions to 3 common Thermostat problems. If you're facing system ON-OFF issues, overheating Thermostat problem or any other that is related to Thermostat, brace yourself to explore these troubleshooting ways.  Ready? Let's go!

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3 Common Thermostats problems and their solutions
Problem 1: System doesn't start at all
What if you turn your system ON and it doesn't turn ON? A sudden thought of system break down shakes you inside within a second but there are 90% possibilities that nothing such has happened. What you need to do quickly, in this case, is to check the breakers and reset them. Try replacing the fuse as a second option. If that does not fix the problem, quick check the batteries of Thermostat and replace them. You'd be amazed to know but several times people waste hundreds of dollars on a repair visit of a professional while the only problem for the non-functioning of their system is old batteries. So before you become one such homeowner to spend a hefty amount on a professional's visit, try to troubleshoot with all the possible ways. Since Thermostats battery problem is the most commonly heard reason why HVAC system won't work at all when turned ON, don't forget to use this hack.

Problem2: Different appliance temperature from the one set on Thermostat
People install Thermostats and still complain of fatty energy bills sometimes also blaming the brand. The problem, however, is not with the brands or the Thermostat, it is rather with the way the Thermostat is used. Most people think purchasing a costly Thermostat and mounting it will start to lower their bills, totally ignoring the fact that a proper installation affects the efficiency of Thermostat to a great extent. The reason why appliance's temperature is different from the one set on Thermostat is the wrong placement of the Thermostat. If the Thermostat is located at a place where it can receive direct heat, sunlight or any other source of energy, it fails to detect the actual temperature and thus runs appliances on extreme temperatures which automatically contributes to higher energy bills. Relocate your thermostat if this is what your problem is.

Problem 3: HVAC system fails to turn off when needed
How do Thermostats contribute in saving energy? They do so by automatically lowering or even turning the appliances OFF when the desired room temperature is created. Sometimes, the system stops tripping and as a consequence runs constantly rising energy bills. This happens because of the same reason which has been described above; the improper mounting of the Thermostat. Even when the desired room temperature is created, the system does not turn off because the Thermostat is continuously receiving energy and is sensing the temperature as hot. Do the same as in problem 2; Relocate Thermostat at a proper location.

Have you been battling with Thermostat problems? Was this article of any use? Don't forget to give your feedback.

Happy Heating and Cooling!

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AC Repair Guide for Homeowners

Although Air Conditioners are complex mechanical systems that have complex repairing needs too, you can always screw the minor AC repairs yourself which would save you money and restore the cooling right away. No matter how complicated the problem may seem, run through some basic AC troubleshooting before calling in a technician. Here are a few
  • Check the air conditioner’s power, check the indoors and outdoors switches and the breaker which powers the unit.
  • Check your Thermostat settings and adjust the temperature a few degrees below the room temperature.
  • Change your filter precisely, make sure it hasn’t collapsed into the air handler

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There are two basic AC problems that may need repairing

System blowing hot Air

This is a common AC repair complaint which can have a simple fix. Although there are many different causes the most common ones include:

Thermostat improperly set
This happens when you accidentally bump into the Thermostat settings and the button changes from “cool” to “heat”. Or this may happen when you change the fan settings from “auto” to “on”. This makes the fan to blow air when the system isn’t running. You can always change the settings to previous ones and the hot air issue will resolve.

Restricted Airflow
This happens when your filter needs changing. Change filters however you may need to call a professional if it doesn’t help even after the changing of the filter.

Electric issues
It’s possible that the circuit breaker has been tripped, fused or blown. As a result, outside components may lose power and inside components may push out warm air. Fix the electrical connections.

Refrigerant leak
Refrigerant line joints connections become loose which causes a leak in the refrigerant. Manufacturer’s fault is also a reason. If the appliance is still on warranty make use of it to replace or repair the appliance under that else call a professional help.

Dirty Outside Unit
Sometimes the outside condenser unit gets covered in weeds, sticks, bushes and leaves etc. Get set and clean the unit from all such things that are hindering its proper performance.

Compressor
Compressor problem will lead to the whole system to not work. Several things can go wrong with the compressor including electrical issues, overheating and refrigerant issues. You will need to call a professional help for this issue if you are not familiar with the minute details of compressors.

System ices over

If your air conditioner ices over, it will stop to operate properly. One of the most common issues is that the coils have iced over. As your air conditioner runs, condensation gathers on the coils and is frozen by the cold air circulating through them. To de-ice the AC, you’ll need the following:
Blow dryer
Towel
Air Filters

Follow the steps below to de-ice the AC

  • Turn off the AC from the breaker box of your house.
  • Turn off power switches.
  • Give your AC time to thaw out, allow at least one day or help it thaw out by the use of blow dryer on low heat setting
  • Check the unit to verify that coils have thawed out thoroughly.
  • Check pool water or condensation; if present, dry it out with a towel.
  • Turn the power back on at the breaker.
  • Turn on the AC: Use thermostat for this. Visually inspect to see that the fans are working properly.
  • Replace your air filter, this will improve the airflow from AC to your living areas.

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Ways to improve Water Heater efficiency

16% of the annual residential energy consumption goes to the Water Heaters. This statement is true for most of the Canadian homes. Improving Water Heater efficiency can contribute to making the environment greener and also in reducing the energy bills. There are two wonderful ways that can help improve the efficiency of Water Heater. One is, reducing the use of Hot Water. Lesser the use, lesser the Water Heater has to work and efficient the system remains. The other is by reducing the heat loss due to the water heating system. Let's explore both of these ways;

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Improve efficiency by reducing usage
Replacing fixture
Oh wow! Really? Oh yes! It is!
Changing of the fixture can help you consume less hot water. And guess how does that happen? That happens when you replace older models of showers and taps that provide heavy flow with low flow models. Ever wondered how much hot water gets wasted due to a heavy flow of the shower when you bath? A lot! Fixing the fixtures can add to the overall water heater efficiency.

Leaks and damages
Here's another important one. Leaking taps, showers and other water supplying fixtures can waste a lot of hot water on a daily basis. Consequently, a water heater has to run more and this affects the efficiency too. Fix the leaks.

Energy star products
This one is of prime importance. Homeowner waste a lot of hot water in dishwashers and laundry. That's kind of a real waste. Some people just can't get themselves satisfied unless they use hot water for everything. If you're one such people, purchase energy star washing machines and dishwashers. Energy Star products are energy efficient and thus save energy even when you don't bother to save.

Improve efficiency by reducing heat loss

Insulation of tank
This trick has been used by several homeowners throughout Toronto. In colder climates, heat loss takes place more easily and the water heater has to make more effort to provide hot water by continuously burning heat. This can be avoided by insulating the water tank. Insulation of a water tank can be done easily by individuals themselves. Take fibreglass sheets, asbestos or any other insulation material and wrap it properly around the tank. You're done, dude! Once the water tank is insulated, it keeps the energy in and keeps the water hot.

Insulation of pipes
This might sound ridiculous to you if you have no idea how much of energy is wasted as the water moves from the pipelines to the place of use i.e kitchen, bathroom. The insulation of pipes is as easy as the insulation of tanks. All that is required is to cover the pipes with foam or any other cheap insulation material. The heat loss does not occur as the hot water flows through supply lines. Eventually, lesser use of water heater and higher remains its efficiency.

Another way to improve your water heater efficiency is to convert to gas. Since gas is cheaper compared with electricity, it helps save in long run. Also, it has been observed that the gas fired water heaters last longer than the electric water heaters.

These ways although they might seem ordinary can drastically improve the efficiency of the Water Heater and can also add several years to their life. All it takes is a few wise steps.   

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How to decide whether you need an AC repair or a Replacement?

As a rule of thumb, when it comes to taking the decision of repair vs replacement, it is imperative to never rely solely on your own analysis. Consulting an HVAC professional is what we suggest. However, the problem is, many times the HVAC service providers give wrong suggestions in order to make their own business. A replacement will benefit a company more than repair, they would, therefore, try to convince the potential customer to replace their Air Conditioner instead of repairing. The case is of course not always the same. There are several reliable HVAC service provider companies in GTA whose suggestion you can trust. An easy way to make sure that your decision to choose between repair/replacement is the right decision, try to consult two to three different professionals and then decide what to do. But there may be the cases with you when you're unable to find good HVAC professionals or they charge too much for diagnosis, here are a few factors, analyzing which you can decide yourself whether you should choose repair or replacement.

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Age Matters

Oh yes! Agr matters. The simplest way to make a random guess for replacement is by calculating the age of your Air Conditioner. You should be aware what is the usual lifespan of the model you're using. If the Air Conditioner has already completed its lifespan, you should understand that now dragging it more will only cost you high energy bills, noise and most probably a sudden breakdown. Go for Replacement
 

Repair History

There goes something real wrong with AC's sometimes. They'll seek repair and will continue to seek repair every season. Sometimes twice or more in a season. This is not only costly but also affects the efficiency of your Air Conditioner. So, despite the age of the AC, analyze the repair history. If there are regular repairs, better go for a new AC installation. It will cost once but will save from costly repairs for a long run. Go for replacement again.

What do Energy Bills say?

One of the signs of repair/replacement is the increase in energy bills. Take out the energy bills of past few months and see if there's a sudden rise in bills. The problem that causes the rise in energy bills could possibly be solved through repairs. Go for a repair and see if the AC regains the older efficiency. If it doesn't and the AC is already old, choose to replace instead of wasting several hundred dollars on fatty bills.

If you're between sixes and sevens about the replacement/repair of your Air Conditioner, these three points will assist in taking a right decision. But as said earlier that it's good to seek a professional's suggestion too. Your AC can probably run for a few more years and replacement could probably be a wrong decision that you'd mistakenly take. Spend a few dollars, schedule a visit with an HVAC professional and then see whether you'll enjoy the cool breeze from a new AC this summer or from the same old and gold one.

Note:
You can also connect with us for HVAC consultation.
Call at: 905-910-1488

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How to make sure your HVAC technician has performed the right job?

Ownership is such a great feeling. What a relief it is to realise that something belongs solely to you. No rent, no extra precautions, no worries or fine etc. Living in an expensive country like Canada and primarily in the Toronto, having the ownership of all home appliances is not easy. It is for this reason that the dealers offer appliances on rent, appliances on monthly installment and on loan. There are not too many people who manage to spend on home comfort heating and cooling appliances easily but if you're among the fortunate ones who do, you probably need to breathe deep for a while and feel super blessed if you own all your home comfort heating and cooling appliances with a one-time payment.

So, taken a deep breath? Now come to the point of importance. Actually, it is not about being able to spend, it is rather about spending where it actually benefits. While you purchase your favourite home comfort heating and cooling appliances, there comes a time when they need repair. Or else, a regular maintenance and tune-up, of course, remains the part of appliance keeping. The question is:
How certain are you that the technician who serviced your appliance performed all the necessary steps?

We can say with certainty that more than half of the Canadians are never sure whether or not the technician they paid for servicing their appliance performed the necessary maintenance steps or not. Let's resolve the problem. Here's a disclosure of what a technician on a maintenance visit is supposed to do. For now, we're highlighting the Furnace Maintenance. Stay tuned to our to our blog as we'll be providing you with more hacks.

7 ''to do's'' a professional technician will certainly do when performing a maintenance check of your home Furnace

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1. Danger-Danger, CO Leaks

With a gas Furnace at home, never forget that your technician on a maintenance visit is supposed to check your Furnace for CO leaks. If he doesn't tell you that you're breathing safe air or doesn't have any idea whether or not there are leaks, bid him a goodbye as soon as possible and call a professional because.....he's just another guy hired or may be a hoax.
 

2. Clogged chimneys

When your chimneys or vents get enough clogged with dust and debris, they begin to throw back the residual gases back into your home in annoyance. So don't overly annoy them. For that, when a professional comes to check your Furnace, see whether or not he gives a quick look (and of course quick cleaning) to the chimneys and vents.

3. Air Filter cleaning/replacement

Replacement of Furnace filters and duct filters is a must. Since you're not doing a maintenance on your own and have paid the technician for a complete maintenance check, let him do his job completely.

4. Checking Thermostats:

Did you know that sometimes the reason of a sudden breakdown of an appliance is not the appliance, in fact, the faulty thermostat? As the thermostat directly affects the operational activities of a heating and cooling appliance, thermostats need to be checked carefully to make sure they're performing the right function.

5. Cleaning Pilots

Coming to the inside of a Furnace, cleaning of the pilots is also a major maintenance check task a professional is supposed to do. Your Furnace pilot might be all okay if you are good at appliance keeping so your HVAC service provider will not have to do the cleaning but make sure he checks the pilot at least.

6. Analysing Motors and Fans

Your motor is important and so is your fan. Very important in fact! Who will blow the heated and treated air if there's no fan? And, on the first hand, how will your Furnace function without a motor? So, be sure, these two components are not left when having a maintenance check of your Furnace from a technician.

7. Cleaning burners and checking pipelines:

No burner, no heat. No heat no comfort. The burner is basically a must check on a maintenance check visit since its inappropriate functioning can turn everything upside down. Also, giving a proper check to the gas pipelines is extremely important and is, therefore, a highlighted 'to do' on the maintenance checklist of a pro.

Final Note
Not sure if you get tired of all those long details or found them useful for yourself. We're glad if you benefitted from the said. Next time when a technician comes for a maintenance visit, you'll know what to expect from him and how to make sure he's doing the right maintenance.

Till next time. Cya!


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Have babies and have a Fireplace? Do this

You have to be extremely cautious if you've little angels around you and have also a  Fireplace set up in your home. You know fire is dangerous, your 1-year-old does not. Since children like to explore new things and want to experience things on their own, a fireplace could be very fascinating for your child. While you cannot keep an eagle's eye on your crawling and walking child all the time, it is essential to take precautions so as to avoid any harm.
We've thought of some practical and powerful ways to baby-proof your gas fireplace


Set up a barrier


All your baby would want it to touch the blazing flames. Although many gas fireplace setups have freestanding screens, they are not safe. Even a toddler's slight push is enough to pull the screen down. And then, the fire is all there. Danger!
The right way to baby proof your fireplace is to install a barrier or moveable gate in front of the fireplace.


Make use of Child-proof fireplace locks


You might be using an enclosed electric fireplace or woodburning stove. In this case, use child-proof locks to make sure your baby doesn't get to the inside of the fireplace to explore it. Keep the fireplace locked when not in use.


Hide fireplace starters & remote controls
If your baby's quest to explore is really serious, he'll find them anyway but for the good of him and yourself, keep the fireplace starters or remote controllers out of the sight of children. As they say, ''out of sight, out of mind'', let's hope your baby will forget to dig out the fireplace secrets by not seeing fireplace related things and activities around.


Soften hearth
If you've a fireplace with a hearth structure around, it could be really dangerous for your child. The tiles on the hearth are usually very hard. Also, the hearth edges are extremely sharp. As the little ones go up and down the hearth, there are chances of serious accidents particularly by coming in an improper contact with the hearth edges. In order to baby-proof it, install foam tiles in the area surrounding the fireplace.


Regular Maintenance
Your Gas Fireplace could be leaking carbon monoxide and your baby's life could come under serious risk with him breathing near the fireplace here gas is being leaked. Play safe and install a carbon monoxide detector near your gas fireplace. Also, don't forget to call a professional HVAC technician (of course certified) for a regular checkup of your home appliances and your Fireplace in particular. Maintenance of gas fireplace from professional drastically reduces the risks of accidents. We'd strongly endorse that with baby's presence at home, do not try to troubleshoot things on your own else you might end up worsening the problems. Ask professionals for assistance.

Bottom Line
In every Winter, hundreds of children are taken to the hospital emergency due to the accident caused by not baby-proofing the fireplace. The accidents may sometimes cause causalities. We've mentioned simple and practical steps to baby-proof the gas fireplace. Let's hope if you've babies, this article was of help for you and you'll follow the mentioned steps to baby-proof your fireplace.
Happy Winters & be safe!



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6 Things to consider before purchasing a new Furnace

Whether you're purchasing a furnace for the first time or wish to replace the older one. There are things you need to consider in order to purchase the right thing for the comfort of your home. Consulting an HVAC service provider is always the best choice, we, however, would also like to help you learn the things to consider while purchasing a Furnace.


Efficiency:

Greater the efficiency, greater the price. A high-efficiency Furnace is nonetheless better than a medium of low-efficiency Furnace, it, however, has high prices and not everyone can afford it. When you're looking for a new Furnace, better not to choose for low-efficiency Furnace merely because of their low price because the relationship goes like; greater the efficiency lesser the energy bills. Purchasing a good quality product though costly saves on energy bills for a long run. So consider the efficiency of the Furnaces when buying one.

Brand:

There's a mistake that most homeowners do. In order to save money, they choose unknown brands or low-quality brands consequently face troubles of repairs and replacement later. It needs to be understood that well-known brands that sell products of high quality at relatively higher prices have made their name only after satisfying thousands and thousands of customers. Instead of taking a risk of purchasing unknown brands, it is better to choose a well-known brand of Furnace.


Size:

Size matters! Different homes have different requirements. Purchasing a large sized Furnace for a small home would only be a waste of money. Similarly, purchasing the small wrong size for a larger home will only require you to add more heating systems to satisfy the heating needs. It is, therefore, important to consult a reliable HVAC service provider before purchasing the new Furnace.


Quiet Operation:

And there are people who absolutely hate appliances that make noise. If you happen to be among such people, another thing important to consider for you is to check how quiet it is while it operates. These days, most Furnaces have a quiet operation, however, there are still some brands that manufacture noisy Furnaces. If you purchase mistakenly one of such brand, oh! you'll have to bear up with the noise for the next 10-15 years so make sure it's a peaceful Furnace.

Warranty:

A faulty appliance if stops functioning only after some time, or turns out to be damaged at the time of installation would cause a big loss. Warranties are there to make sure you face no such loss. That's why, at the time of purchasing a new Furnace, check whether or not the product you're buying offers a warranty.


Service Provider:

So, who are you going to take services from? Choosing a high-quality furnace is not enough. When you choose the Furnace, also make a wise choice to hire professionals to service and install it for you, else all your spent amount will soon be ruined. Taking quality installation services is as important as purchasing quality Furnace since the wrong installation will bring the need to repair.


Mentioned were the points to consider before purchasing a furnace. If you wish to make the right choice, it is important to consider these points so that your appliance functions efficiently for the longest possible time, money is saved and warmth is enjoyed.  

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