Tag Archives: furnace

Home Heating on the Fritz? Focus Your Troubleshooting on These 3 Areas

Home heating systems can stop working for a wide range of reasons, and none of them are welcome on a cold winter’s night. Some system breakdowns may be relatively easy to fix yourself. When you can’t fix it, any additional information you can pass on to a qualified service technician may help speed repairs. Start troubleshooting heating in these three primary areas.

Inspect Air Filters

air filterAir filters frequently get dirty or clogged, and not just the filter inside the furnace. Check the furnace filter every month, and change it at least once or twice a year.

The cold air intakes and heat vents generally also have filters. Look at each individual filter; remove any large debris that may be caught in them, and change the filters if they’re clogged with dust. Ensure that all registers are fully open.

Confirm the Thermostat Works

Programmable thermostats need batteries to work properly, and they may not function properly if the battery is low. Check that the display lights properly and doesn’t show any battery warnings. Next, locate the breaker associated with the thermostat and make sure it’s turned on.

If you want to go into advanced thermostat troubleshooting, you can shut off the breaker and cross the two wires that serve the furnace. Flip the breaker back on. If the furnace fires, the thermostat is the problem.

Check the Furnace

The pilot light should be visible inside the heat exchanger on the furnace. If you don’t see a flame when the furnace is off, then you may need to re-light it. Pilots that don’t re-light properly may have a supply issue that a furnace technician needs to assess and fix.

If the pilot is on but doesn’t ignite the burners when the thermostat calls for heat, the ignitor is the likely culprit. Turn off the gas reset valve for at least five minutes, and then turn it on and try again. Call a technician if it still won’t light.

Contact us at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning for more expert advice on troubleshooting heating concerns in your Route 495/128 area home.

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Gas and Oil Furnaces Offer Different Pros and Cons for Massachusetts Homeowners

Before you install a new furnace in your Massachusetts home, you may have to decide between oil or gas as the fuel source, depending on where you live. Both gas and oil furnaces have advantages and disadvantages, and the following guide will help you determine which option may be best for your home.

Gas Furnace Pros and Cons

furnace2Natural gas furnaces are more efficient overall than oil furnaces, with AFUE ratings of 89 to 98 percent common today, as compared to modern oil furnaces, which have AFUE ratings of 80 to 90 percent.

Gas furnaces require less maintenance, with only one or two service visits needed annually, depending on the model, while oil furnaces require more frequent maintenance due to soot buildup and oil filter changes.

Gas furnaces also tend to be quieter and cleaner to operate, and natural gas costs as little as a third of the price per heating season.

On the other hand, gas furnaces tend to be more expensive than their oil counterparts, by up to 25 percent for the most efficient models, and your home must be located in an area that has natural gas service installed.

Oil Furnace Pros and Cons

Oil furnaces are convenient because they can be installed in remote areas that aren’t serviced by natural gas lines. The home heating oil is delivered as needed by a fuel company, and typically routine furnace maintenance is included as part of the delivery contract. Oil furnaces are less expensive than comparable gas furnaces, and they often produce more heat per BTU of fuel used.

The major disadvantages of oil furnaces include the requirement for on-site fuel storage and the higher expense of home heating oil per heating season. Oil isn’t as clean-burning as gas, requiring more frequent maintenance, and oil furnaces tend to be louder and less efficient than gas models.

For more information about the differences between gas and oil furnaces, talk to our home heating professionals at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning. We’ve served the Route 495/128 area of Massachusetts since 1928.

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Fall Furnace Inspection: Don’t Delay

furnace inspectionA fall furnace inspection is a necessity to ensure that your heating system is running safely, reliably and efficiently this winter. If you’re like most homeowners, you rely on a skilled HVAC professional to tackle this vital maintenance that keeps your heating costs under control and catches small issues before they become expensive problems. Read More Fall Furnace Inspection: Don’t Delay >>

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What’s With the Furnace When It Blows Cool Air?

furnace troubleshootingYour furnace is one of those tricky contraptions that no one ever teaches homeowners about when they first move in. It’s often not until there’s an emergency that anyone takes notice. The truth is there are some basic maintenance tasks that you can do on your own to keep your furnace running in top shape. However, you should also know when to schedule professional maintenance to avoid any further damage. Read More What’s With the Furnace When It Blows Cool Air? >>

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Fall Holidays Are Coming: Use These Tips in Your Energy-efficient Home

energy-efficient homeThe final months of the year include a festive holiday season that often means decorations and lighting for many Massachusetts homeowners. Read More Fall Holidays Are Coming: Use These Tips in Your Energy-efficient Home >>

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Closing Air Vents Can Have a Bigger Impact on Airflow Than You Might Expect

closing air vents, home heating, Holliston, MassachusettsSome homeowners start closing air vents in little-used rooms in the fall to save money on heating costs. However, this practice has a tendency to backfire, resulting in higher energy bills down the road. Read More Closing Air Vents Can Have a Bigger Impact on Airflow Than You Might Expect >>

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Carbon Monoxide Detection Can Occur in Several Spots Throughout the House

carbon monoxide detection, Acton, MassachusettsIf carbon monoxide levels build up in your home, it can become a very hazardous, and even potentially fatal situation. This poisonous gas causes the majority of the deaths by poison in America. A working carbon monoxide detector is vital for protecting the health of your family. Read More Carbon Monoxide Detection Can Occur in Several Spots Throughout the House >>

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Optimizing Air Quality in the Boston Area Home You’re Remodeling or Building

optimizing air quality, Boston, MassachusettsIf you’re remodeling or building a new home in the Route 495/128 area of Massachusetts, one important element to consider is indoor air quality. Optimizing air quality can sometimes be a tricky venture.  Read More Optimizing Air Quality in the Boston Area Home You’re Remodeling or Building >>

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Singular Savings With a Dual-Fuel System

dual-fuel system, Framingham, MassachusettsStandard heat pumps are a great way to get affordable cooling and heating in mild climates, but what about heating your eastern Massachusetts home during the cold winter months? Consider a dual-fuel system to provide the optimum in comfort while helping you to save on your HVAC costs. Read More Singular Savings With a Dual-Fuel System >>

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Cracked Heat Exchanger? How to Stay Cool and Collected

cracked heat exchanger, Holliston, MassachusettsOut of all the things that can go wrong with your furnace, having a cracked heat exchanger can be one of the worst. If left untreated, the effects of the problem can be harmful to your family. So if you think your Massachusetts home might have a damaged furnace, it’s time to learn a few things about what you’re facing. Read More Cracked Heat Exchanger? How to Stay Cool and Collected >>

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