Easy Furnace Fixes

When your furnace is in ill repair, it can be a massive stress mentally and financially. No family wants to be left in the dead of winter without a functional furnace. Often the winter season is extremely busy for HVAC companies in Summerlin This is why we’ve taken the time to provide this helpful resource of easy furnace fixes that homeowners can DIY.

As it can be risky to attempt to fix your furnace yourself, these solutions are focused on another key component of home heating. The thermostat! Many issues with a home that is too cool can be attributed to a simple thermostat malfunction. At an extremely low risk, any homeowner can troubleshoot their thermostat to fix their furnaces.

#1. Make Sure Your Thermostat Is Turned On

As thermostat continue to become more programmable and complex, it can be easy to overlook a few settings. Most importantly, of course, is ensuring that your thermostat is on, as to get a proper reading of your home. Feel around your thermostat for an on/off switch and look to make sure that it is flipped the right way. A digital display thermostat should be more clear. While this step may seem obvious, thermostats can be switched off by accident if they are in heavy traffic areas or by inquisitive children. This is why you can never be too safe in troubleshooting furnace fixes.

#2. Check Temperature Setting

As children become more familiar with digital tech, a thermostat could easily look like a fun game. A programmable thermostat also requires a thorough initial setup. If you simply set the temperature for a single day, then every other day will still be set at the factory default. Take your time to customize your temperature settings appropriately. Also be sure to regularly check your thermostat settings, especially if you are unexpectedly feeling too warm or cool in your home.

#3. Compare Room & Thermostat Temperatures

One way to troubleshoot both your thermostat and furnace is to check the room temperature with a thermometer and cross reference with the current thermostat settings. If there is a disparity, try kicking up your thermostat a few degrees to see if the furnace starts up. This identifies whether the issue is with the furnace, or the thermostat.

If the furnace starts up, then there is an issue with the thermostat’s ability to read the room’s temperature. Make sure that there are no hot or cold sources near the thermostat (breezeways, large appliances, sun-spots, etc.). Level your thermostat to ensure an even reading. Check that there is nothing close to the thermostat that could be obstructing its ability to properly read the room’s temperature.

#4. Ensure Thermostat Is Set Right

More complex, smart thermostats are great, but only if you utilize the right settings. Take your time with your initial setup of your programmable thermostat to ensure that each day is set appropriately. There are more settings on a thermostat that can affect how your furnace functions. Having the “Fan” setting turned off will not circulate hot air properly. This will create pockets of your home that are warmer than others, which can create the illusion that your furnace is malfunctioning. Another, more intuitive, fix is to make sure that your thermostat is set to heat. This will ensure that your thermostat is connected to your furnace.

#5. Replace the Battery

If your furnace is simply not turning on, then it’s likely an issue with your thermostat’s energy source. The most frequent thermostat issue is simply dead batteries. Lift the front of your thermostat and takeout and replace the batteries. Test your thermostat once the new batteries are in and you will likely notice a difference.

Other factors can shut off power to your thermostat. A blown fuse or a tripped breaker can also cause malfunctions with your thermostat.

#6. Clean Out Your Thermostat

Since we cannot see inside of the thermostat, we often don’t think about how dirty its interior can get. Any mechanical device has a number of different components, all of which are required for it to function. When dust, spider webs and other contaminants get inside and dirty these components, it can affect your thermostat’s reading and overall function. By lifting the face of the thermostat and taking a dry cloth to the components, it can clear away a lot of issues a thermostat can have.

#7. Bypass Program Settings

 

Sometimes on programmable thermostats, the right temperature is simply not registering. A common thermostat hack that HVAC specialists utilize is manually setting the temperature by pressing the arrows and holding the hold button for 4 counts. This should be a manual override of whatever setting the thermostat had.

If you are having furnace issues or want to upgrade your thermostat, contact the HVAC experts at Cal Air Cooling and Heating for friendly and helpful troubleshooting or to schedule a service appointment.

Furnace Trouble

Eradicating Furnace Trouble

If you are experiencing furnace trouble then you are at the right place. Here at Cal Air we have all the information that you need to know when it comes to furnace troubleshooting. If you have ever experienced trouble with your furnace then you more than likely know how frustrating it can be especially when it’s not working at all. However there is some good news! We can cover any of your furnace service needs and fix anything that needs it. Below however we are going to provide you with some furnace troubleshooting tips so that you can hopefully have somewhat of an idea about what’s going on before the service technician ever arrives.

Check The Thermostat To Make Sure It Is Turned On

The first to remove furnace trouble is to check your thermostat. A very common problem that we see here at Cal Air is our customers just simply forgetting to turn their furnace on. Thermostats can be complicated at times and the more options that your thermostat has the more problems that can go wrong.

First off, after ensuring that your thermostat is definitely turned on then check to be sure that it is turned to heat rather than cool. Next check the temperature setting to be sure that it has not been turned down by accident. Any of the above factors can make you think that your furnace is going out when really it’s just something as simple as a temperature setting.

Check Shutoff Switches And Breakers

After checking your thermostat, the next possible issue in furnace trouble are the shutoff switches and breakers. We know that it sounds crazy but we experience a lot here at Cal Air that the only furnace repair that needs to be done is turning the furnace on. Look for a standard wall switch on or near the furnace to make sure it is turned on. All furnaces, no matter what kind, have some sort of switch. You also will need to check the circuit breaker or fuse for the furnace to ensure that they are still turned on.

Change Filters

When you are sure the furnace is one, move to the next step in handling furnace trouble. Believe it or not dirty filters are the most common cause of furnace problems. Dust and dirt are the number one cause for restricted airflow and if the filters become too clogged the heat exchanger will overheat and shut off very quickly. If you notice that the blower is running but no heat is coming out then that is a sign that the filter needs to be replaced. A dirty filter can also cause soot to build up on the heat exchanger of your furnace causing it to loose efficiency. Changing the filter is a fairly simple and inexpensive process all it takes is a couple minutes of your time. If you are unsure when it comes to replacing your filter we can help. We can schedule an appointment to come out and do it for you or some times we can even just explain how to do it over the phone.

Make Sure The Gas Is On

If you have a gas furnace, the most obvious issue in furnace trouble is gas, and that it is flowing to the furnace. Gas valves can get cut off very easily and it can be very easy to forget to turn it back on, so if you experience that your furnace is not working check the gas valve. Turning the gas valve back on can be a quite difficult process so it’s better off to leave it up to us.

Here at Cal Air we have a team of highly trained professionals that would be more than happy to assist you in removing all furnace trouble so don’t hesitate and give us a call today.

Does Your Furnace Turn Itself On Randomly?

Taking care of your family during the winter months means making sure your furnace works and that it works properly. Those temperatures can dip quite low and if your furnace is not doing it’s job, it can be a harsh winter.

One thing to watch out for in your furnace this year is noticing how often your furnace is shutting off and turning back on. If you notice it a lot, that could be signs of a big problem. That is called short cycling and it can wear out your furnace before you’ve even had it very long.

Furnace Troubleshooting

Here at Cal4Air we help you understand that process and what to look for to save yourself money on furnace repairs, and even furnace replacements. If you notice your furnace is not heating well or is short cycling, here are a few tips for furnace troubleshooting.

Check Your Filters

The first thing you should always look at if you notice short cycling, is your furnace filter. A furnace draws air in via return air ducts, heats it, and then pushes it inside your house through a series of ducts. The main job of a furnace filter is to protect the furnace fan from dust and other grime. If the filter is clogged, there won’t be enough air flowing for the furnace to heat your home. This will send wrong signals to the furnace and it may be forced to malfunction.

What Is The Thermostat Doing?

After you have changed out your filter or at least made sure it’s not the issue, head to your thermostat to inspect it. It could be that your batteries are low and sending false messages to the system. In that case, change out the batteries and run your system for at least an hour after resetting it. This will help you see if that fixed the problem. It could also be that your thermostat is too close to a heat source and it’s giving the impression that the whole room is warm enough. In that case try to remove the extra heat source from that area or consider having a technician move the thermostat for you.

The thermostat is an important cog in furnace control and management and needs a check as part of furnace troubleshooting.

Poor Insulation

If both of the other suggestions are fine, then you need to check your insulation. Are the windows sealed properly or do you have leaks around them? This can be a reason for short cycling as well. Make sure your check for leaks and drafts each winter so that you can properly seal and insulate your home against those harsh temperatures.

Insulation, though external to the furnace, can let in cold air and make the furnace work more. This is thus an important part of furnace troubleshooting.

Other Issues

Other problems could be going on and causing your short cycling problems with the furnace or heating system. One could be that your flame sensor is corroded. This is a safety mechanism in the furnace and it could be that it’s not working properly. While you can clean this yourself, it’s best to give our technicians a call as it can be dangerous if you’re not sure what you’re doing.

Another reason for short cycling in your furnace is due to the improper size of the unit itself. If you’re unit is too large for your home it heats it up very quickly. That means your furnace will shut on and off because while it heats up fast, it also loses that heat fast. It’s best to make sure your unit is sized right for your home.

Here at Cal4Air we offer a variety of heating services including furnace repairs, furnace replacement, and furnace maintenance, to name a few. Call our highly trained technicians for all your heating needs, for professional furnace troubleshooting, and to protect your furnace from short cycling this winter.

Your Gas Furnace & Carbon Monoxide

Carbon Monoxide PoisoningYou may be wondering what exactly is carbon monoxide and how can it affect your home? Carbon monoxide is a gas that is colorless, odorless, and toxic. Carbon monoxide is produced by the incomplete combustion of solids, liquids, and gaseous fuels. Any appliances that are fueled with gas, oil, kerosene, or wood are capable of producing carbon monoxide. Our team here at Cal Air want to provide you with all the information involving carbon monoxide and your gas furnace that you need to know in order to keep both you and your family safe.

Where does Carbon Monoxide come from?

Carbon monoxide comes from devices that burn fuels such as a furnace. When your furnace is kept in good working condition it will produce very little carbon monoxide. By improperly operating or improperly venting your furnace it can produce high amounts of carbon monoxide sometimes even fatal amounts into your home. It is very important that you take proper furnace safety precautions to ensure that your home does not get large amounts of carbon monoxide flowing throughout the air.

What is the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning?

Any person or even an animal that is living in a space that contains a furnace should be considered at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide exposures have a significant affect on unborn babies, infants, and people that have anemia or a history of heart disease. Just buy breathing in low levels of carbon monoxide it can cause fatigue and increase chest pain in people who have chronic heart disease.

Each year there are nearly five thousand people who are treated in the hospital emergency rooms for carbon monoxide poisoning.

How to prevent your furnace from releasing too much carbon monoxide

You should start out preventing carbon monoxide by regularly maintaining your furnace, ensuring it is installed properly, and used right. It is never a bad idea to give us a call here at Cal Air to come out and make sure your furnace is operating properly. After all proper installation of a furnace is crucial to ensure that no carbon monoxide is being released into your home. During the installation process you should make sure that your furnace is vented properly according to the manufactures instructions. You should next call one of our quality technicians to come out and perform regular maintenance on your furnace.

It is very important to us at Cal Air that your home is free of carbon monoxide so that you and your family will have a safe environment to live in. Never hesitate to give us a call to come out and check your furnace after all you should be one hundred percent sure that your furnace is not producing a lot of carbon monoxide to prevent both you and your family from getting carbon monoxide poisoning.

Overall HVAC Care

Your overall home comfort is easily cared for when you request service from our top rated company. We can provide you with residential and commercial options including indoor air quality, air duct sealing, repair service, maintenance, installation and more. Our team can provide you with every service needed to have a healthy and comfortable home year round. With over 30 years in the industry, Cal Air is ready to provide you with excellent support for your HVAC systems. Let us care for your household or business with our long list of service options. Contact our company today to learn more about the many services we provide or to schedule an appointment.

We are ready to serve you in Las Vegas! Contact us today!

3 Tips for Managing Heating Bills

Winter is when you find yourself reaching for the thermostat for your heater to try and stay warm during the cold weather. Although turning up the heater can come with a higher cost. We are here to make your winter a little less stressful with a few helpful tips on how to manage your heating bill. Just by doing simple things such as adjusting your heater’s thermostat, repairing air duct leaks, or calling a professional when needed, you will see a decrease in your winter heating bill.

(1) Adjust Your Thermostat

You may not think something as simple as adjusting your thermostat can help save you money on your heating bill, but it surprisingly can! Just by setting your thermostat back by one degree you can save as much as one percent for every eight hours. Another way to save money each month is to turn your thermostat down five degrees while you sleep at night. A cooler temperature at night can be offset with an additional blanket while you sleep.

You should also adjust your thermostat if you plan to travel for the holidays, or if you plan to be gone for a long period of time during the day. Believe it or not adjusting your thermostat while you are gone to work, school, or even town can save you a good amount of money on your heating bill. However the trick is how far back you set your thermostat. You should set it back at least ten to fifteen degrees to ensure that you save the most money as possible on your heating bill.

(2) Reduce Air Leaks

Air leaks are one of the largest causes of high-energy bills because they waste your homes energy efficiency. Just by examining and properly sealing air leaks in your home can save you up to ten percent each month on your heating bill. You should examine your air ducts regularly to make sure that there are not any places where air is escaping.

If you were to find a place that seems to be leaking don’t worry because air duct sealing your home is actually quite simple. All you need is time, elbow grease, and caulk. If your existing material however is ripped, damaged, or worn you may also need some weather stripping for the air duct sealing process. If you however are not comfortable with sealing your home and its air ducts alone you can always call a professional to help.

(3) Call the Experts

If you want to ensure that your heater is working efficiently during the cold winter months you may want to consider hiring a professional to work on your heating system. Cal Air can help you out with all your heating system needs. Our professionals here at Cal Air can easily evaluate your system and identify any inefficiency within your heating system. By adjusting gas pressure, replacing air filters, and having routine maintenance completed on your heating system, you can save a lot of money on your heating bill, and with the help of our professionals here at Cal Air we can make that happen.

With years of experience the professionals here at Cal Air can show you just how low-cost improvements to your heater can increase its efficiency this winter and save you some money. The people here at Cal Air are always striving to find ways to help save you money while providing you with a comfortable living environment in the process. We look forward to talking to you soon!

Benefits of Programmable Thermostats

Programmable ThermostatHeating and cooling systems need to be managed and controlled. They have to made to maintain a specific temperature at home as well as other factors such as humidity. If saving your hard earned money each month sounds better to you than spending it on monthly energy bills then a programmable thermostat might be a good investment to consider. A programmable thermostat is a very smart device that allows you to set the temperature in your home for each hour of every day.

You can enjoy the perfect level of comfort when you are at home and save a lot of money by automatically adjusting the temperature in your home when you are away or sleeping. Just by switching to a programmable thermostat you can save as much as $180 per year.

Choosing the Thermostat That’s Right for You

The majority of programmable thermostats come with user-friendly displays that make it easy for you to set the temperatures you want for different times of the day. You might think that this would take a lot of time but the newest advanced models are an engaging, interactive experience with colorful touchscreen displays, so spending a lot of time playing with your programmable thermostat is not a bad thing at all. Separate programs are offered for each day of the week allowing you to choose what temperatures you would like for your house to be on certain days. Some of the programmable thermostats are even Wi-Fi enabled so you can change your settings from your computer, smart phone, or tablet.

Most of the thermostats come with alerts that will tell you when its time for your filter to be changed. Some people think that the thermostats resemble a mini computer. Not only will the programmable thermostats allow you to keep track of your indoor temperatures but it will allow you to keep track of the weather outside as well. Most of the thermostats have a graphical user interface that can display the outside conditions and humidity levels with the help of an add-on sensor.

Energy Savings

To make sure that you save the most energy you should aim for a “setback” period of at least eight hours. For each degree that you cut your thermostat back you can expect to see one percent savings per degree on your monthly bill. During the wintertime, while you are away at work or home asleep for the night, try cutting your heat down ten degrees. This will help you save up to twenty percent off your heating bill during the winter months. With a programmable thermostat you can use these strategies not only in the winter but also in the summertime as well, saving you money all year long.

Controlling the Thermostat from Long Distances

Say you’re on vacation with your family and friends and you suddenly remember that you forgot to turn down your thermostat at home, no problem! If your home’s thermostat is equipped with a smart thermostat option, you can tap into the system through a personalized web portal anywhere that there is Internet access. You can also log in to your system and check its efficiency while you are away and make any adjustments necessary.

How Do I Get a Programmable Thermostat Installed?

You can get your programmable thermostat installed by contacting us at Cal Air. Our team of trained professionals can have your programmable thermostat up and running in no time. It is a very easy installation process and will allow you to start saving money immediately. Stop wasting all of your money on monthly heating and cooling bills because you have to use a manual thermostat when all that can be changed with just one phone call. Call Cal Air today to ask any questions or to get more information on programmable thermostats.

What does it mean if your furnace is making a weird noise?

FurnacesHeating systems are an important part of your home. They help keep you and your family members warm during the cold winter months.   It is important to understand when your heating system might be in need of repairs.  A common sign that your system might need repairs is when you hear the system making strange noises.  It is important to catch the need for repairs in time to have them fixed before they cause larger, more complicated issues.  If you can contact a professional technician to investigate repairs before they get worse, you can save yourself some time and money in the long run.  If you hear any of the following strange noises coming from your heating system, contact a technician immediately to inspect your heating system for any issues.

Grinding

If you are hearing a grinding noise, this can be a common noise heard from a heating system that is having problems functioning properly.  When you hear a grinding noise, it usually means that some of the parts in your heating system might be scraping against other parts in the system.  This can be a very bad sign.  The grinding noises could also be a sign that a bent fan blade is striking a metal component that is nearby, a part of the motor could be overheating, or a piece of debris could also be stuck in the blades of the fan.   If you hear a grinding noise in your system, it is important to turn off the system immediately to prevent further damage and contact a technician immediately.

Banging

A loud banging noise coming from your heating system could mean that your radiator is broken or not functioning properly.  Replacing a radiator can be very expensive and time consuming, so you want to be sure you investigate a banging noise immediately.  Contact your technician to have him or her inspect your heating system and describe to them the noises you are hearing.  A banging noise that occurs when the heat kicks on is a sign that the radiator is in need of repairs.

Humming

Another common noise heard from a defective heating system could be a humming noise.  A common cause of this type of noise could be that the heating system is working too hard and might be in danger of shutting down.  The humming can be caused by the motors in the fan or some other part of the heating system working too hard to do the job it is designed for.  Another possible cause of a humming noise could be that there is a leak somewhere in the heating system, which is ultimately causing a loss of warm air and thus creating the humming sound.

Hissing

A hissing or buzzing noise could mean that a leak is occurring somewhere in the system, as discussed with the humming noise. This hissing noise that is coming from the heating system could also be a sign that your system is having a serious issue.   The sound could also be caused by an electrical failure, which could cause your heating system to overwork itself or ultimately shut down completely.

It is not difficult to understand that strange noises coming from your heating system can be a sure sign that your system is not functioning as it should be.  If you hear any strange noises coming from your heating system, do not ignore those noises, no matter how small or infrequent they may be.  Ignoring noises can lead to bigger issues for your heating system, and you want to insure your family is warm during the winter months.

Overall HVAC Care

Your overall home comfort is easily cared for when you request service from our top rated company. We can provide you with residential and commercial options including indoor air quality, air duct sealing, repair service, maintenance, installation and more. Our team can provide you with every service needed to have a healthy and comfortable home year round. With over 30 years in the industry, Cal Air is ready to provide you with excellent support for your HVAC systems. Let us care for your household or business with our long list of service options. Contact us today to learn more about the many services we provide or to schedule an appointment.

We are ready to serve you in Las Vegas! Contact us today!

What Type of Furnace Filter Should You Use in Your Home?

Furnace FiltersFurnace filters come in a variety of options.  And even though air filters are among the smallest and simplest of parts to your system, they can be the most impactful as well.  Finding the best furnace filter for your system can both save you money and improve your overall air quality.  Air filters were first designed and created to protect the moving parts of the furnace itself.  However, since their beginning, these filters have come a long way. Air filters can now prevent harmful particles from cycling back into the air that you breathe while inside your home.  Below, we provide you with five common types of furnace filters that are available on the market.  These furnace filters vary in size and budgets, allowing you to find the best one for you.

Disposable Fiberglass Filters

The first option of furnace filters is the disposable fiberglass filter.  This option of furnace filters is one of the most basic filters available on the market.  This filter is created from a one inch thick spun fiberglass.  This filter does not do much more than help in preventing larger particles such as dust, lint, and debris from clogging up your system.  The MERV rating on this filter is 2-3 and the cost ranges from $1-$2.  The pro of this furnace filter is that it is very affordable, making it good for renters.  This filter is also good for those without allergies or asthma who do not need a most purifying form of filter.  The con of this filter is that it does not clean the air in your home other than stopping those larger particles from entering the air.

Disposable Pleated Filters

The next option of furnace filters is the disposable pleated filter.  This is one of the more popular options of filters available on the market.  This filter is made from cotton paper or polyester and can remove small particles such as spores and mites.  The MERV rating on this filter is a 6 and the cost ranges from $4-$5.  The pro to this filter option is that it is somewhat inexpensive, can be made from earth friendly materials, and blocks both large and small particles.  The con to this filter is that it can add more resistance to the air flow, which makes your system more expensive to operate.  This filter also needs to be changed more frequently to avoid clogging your HVAC system and causing major issues.

Disposable Electrostatic Filters

The disposable electrostatic filter contains self-charging electrostatic cotton or paper fibers that attract and trap small particles.  The MERV rating on this filter is 10 and the cost is around $10. The pro to this filter is that it is affordable and comes in standard sizes, is good for homes with children, pets, or smokers.  The con to this filter is that some sizes can be expensive.

Permanent Electrostatic Filters

Another filter available is the permanent electrostatic filter.  These filters are similar to the other filters mentioned; however, these filters also contain the self-charging cotton fiber.  The MERV rating for this filter is 8 and the cost is $15-$20.  The pro to this filter is that it has minimal waste and is more efficient.  The con is that the custom sizes can be expensive.

 

High-Efficiency Pleated Filters

The high-efficiency pleated filter is made from a pleated synthetic cotton that prevents leaks or fluttering due to being attached to a very rigid metal grid.  The MERV rating for this filter is 14-16 and the cost is $100.  The pro to this filter is that it is frequently used in hospitals, they screen out the smallest of particles, and can be helpful for individuals with respiratory problems or autoimmune disorders.  The con is that they filters are costly and can only be installed in special housing due to their thick size.

Consult the Professionals

When you need assistance with your home cooling or heating system, or you just want to learn how to better manage the life span of your unit, consult the professionals.

Overall HVAC Care

Your overall home comfort is easily cared for when you request service from our top rated company. We can provide you with residential and commercial options including indoor air quality, air duct sealing, repair service, maintenance, installation and more. Our team can provide you with every service needed to have a healthy and comfortable home year round. With over 30 years in the industry, Cal Air is ready to provide you with excellent support for your HVAC systems. Let us care for your household or business with our long list of service options. Contact our company today to learn more about the many services we provide or to schedule an appointment.

We are ready to serve you in Las Vegas! Contact us today!