Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning Blog: Archive for September, 2013

What Causes Boilers to Leak?

Friday, September 27th, 2013

A boiler is a solid investment in heating your Colorado home. Modern boilers provide even and efficient heating, quiet operation, and last many years because they have low maintenance needs. But no boiler can run perfectly forever, and most eventually will require repairs. Because boilers use hot water to warm your home, leaks are the biggest concern most owners have. Although a small amount of water dripping from an outlet pipe is normal, as we’ll explain below, any other excess water can indicate trouble. Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning has worked since 1924 doing Fort Collins, CO boiler installation and repairs—we’re a trusted name to turn to when you need to stops those boiler leaks.

Here are a few reasons your boiler may start leaking:

Improper installation: If the boiler in your home was installed poorly, it likely has bad connections from the tank to the pipes. A common issue we see with amateur installations is sloppy soldering on the copper pipe fittings, which will cause leaks that will only get worse. You might consider a full replacement, although depending on how serious the problems are, skilled technicians can adjust your boiler to offset the original problems.

Corrosion and rust: Wherever you deal with water, you’ll potentially face trouble from corrosion and rust. This weakens the metal along the tank and the pipes if left unattended, leading to leaks. A superficial layer of rust is a simple fix, and sometimes an HVAC technician will need to remove and replace only the rusted or corroded coils and mounting plates. But if a lack of maintenance has caused the corrosion to spread, you might need to have the tank replaced.

High pressure: We mentioned that you’ll get a small amount of dripping from an outlet pipe. This helps relieve the pressure inside the boiler so it doesn’t climb to dangerous levels. It’s important that you don’t block up this pipe! If it becomes clogged for other reasons, then the pressure that builds up inside the tank will start to cause numerous leaks. High pressure in a boiler requires immediate attention.

Leaks can turn into major problems if not repaired promptly: not only can they cause your boiler to stop working, but leaking may damage your floors and walls and raise your home’s humidity. Be cautious about trying to fix a leak on your own, and make sure you never poke or prod at it—that will only make it worse. Call Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning to take on the task. If you suspect that the problems stem from a poor job installing the boiler in the first place, our Fort Collins, CO boiler installation experts will give you the help you need.

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Learn How to Get Your Heating System Ready for Fall

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

The gap between summer and winter in Colorado offers unique challenges and opportunities for your heating system. On one hand, a sudden cold spell can strike abruptly as the fall deepens, possibly catching you unprepared with a heater that doesn’t function properly. On the other hand, the fall is a less busy time for HVAC experts, making it a fairly simple task to schedule any maintenance you need to get your heater prepared for the impending chill. We at Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning have gone through many fall seasons helping people in Bellvue, CO with heating their homes. We want to pass on some of what we’ve learned about preparing your heating system for the fall, so you’re not caught in the cold unexpectedly without a working heating solution.

The most important step to take is to call an expert heating company and arrange for regular maintenance visits. Hopefully, you’ve already enrolled in a preventive maintenance program. If you haven’t, now is the perfect time to check this off your list! A visit from a AC professional will get your heater tuned-up and ready for the colder weather. You will also learn if you need to get any important repairs done. Take care of these as soon as you can—the technician will be able to make the arrangements for you—and avoid later time crunches.

For furnace owners, you should swap out your old filter and put in a new one. Filters protect the furnace from internal damage, so you want to start the fall with a fresh one to keep your furnace safe. If you use a boiler to heat your home, give it a visual inspection to make sure it isn’t leaking from the tank or at the pipe and line connections. Pay attention to any rumbling noises from the boiler, which may indicate a problem that requires professional repair, such as a build-up of sediment or lime inside.

Don’t delay doing any of this—especially the professional check-up! Fall can get cold when we least anticipate it. Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning can serve all your Bellvue, CO heating needs for the fall with our trained technicians. You can expect quality service from a company with four generations of experience. Look into our maintenance program and schedule a visit today!

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What Causes My Ducts to Get Dirty?

Monday, September 9th, 2013

Ducts form the distribution network for your heating or central air conditioning system. They spread throughout your house via the attic, crawlspace or other unobtrusive location, moving cool or warm air from the central unit to all of your rooms and walkways. Over time, they can accumulate dust, which may have an adverse effect on the quality of air in your home. In Berthoud, duct cleaning may be necessary when the atmosphere gets dry in the winter, creating a lot of dust and similar particles.

But what causes your ducts to get dirty?

In many cases, leaks, cracks or loose fittings are what allow dirt in. When ducts get old, they start to break down, just like any other appliance. If the opening occurs in a dirty part of the house, such as the attic or crawlspace, negative pressure from the air passing through the ducts can pull in dirt and debris.

The causes of those leaks can vary. Heat or cold may cause the metal of the ducts to expand or contract, which puts stress on the fittings and may result in a leak. Improper installation may be the culprit as well, especially if the contractor wasn’t properly certified. Older homes may have an older duct system that is no longer up to code, creating similar issues. Besides the reduction in air quality, such leaks also prevent your heater or air conditioner from functioning at peak capacity, forcing you to pay higher energy bills every month.

A thorough duct cleaning from a trained professional is part of the solution – and such operations are standard procedure for most qualified HVAC experts – but that’s only part of the equation. The specialist needs to hunt down the cause of the leaks or loose fittings and repair it. Otherwise, the process will start all over again. For Berthoud duct cleaning services, contact the specialists at Fort Collins Heating & Air Conditioning. Our trained experts can travel to your home and pinpoint what causes your ducts to get dirty, then perform professional repairs to seal the leaks. Call us today to set up an appointment.

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Why We Celebrate Labor Day

Monday, September 2nd, 2013

We hope our present and future customers had a pleasant Labor Day this September. We know how hard you work to ensure that you and your loved ones have a good life, and we feel the same way about the work that we do throughout the year. Home comfort is our business, so you can rely on our technicians to take care of any issues that you may have. To many of us, Labor Day means BBQ, the start of the football season, and spending quality time with our friends and family. But there is much more to this holiday, and we wanted to share its true purpose with you.

Like many US holidays, the origins of Labor Day are somewhat disputed. While many cite Peter J. McGuire’s (of the American Federation of Labor) suggestion of a demonstration and picnic as the inaugural Monday, others cite Matthew Maguire, then secretary of the Central Labor Union of New York. In the wake of the massive and violent Pullman Strike of 1894, which pitted George Pullman and US Marshals and Military against workers of the Pullman Palace Car Company outside Chicago. Designated as a federal holiday by Congress and President Grover Cleveland in 1894, a mere six days after the strike ended, Labor Day has since become a way of recognizing the contribution that hard working Americans have made to this country.

We wish you all the best, and hopefully you took the time to relax, eat some good food, and take a load off.

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