Red Rock Mechanical, LLC Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Essex’

When Is Heating Repair Urgent?

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

We’ll say it right off the bat: every heating repair need should be treated as an urgent matter. Sometimes, a heating repair need may not seem like something that necessitates immediate attention. A strange noise coming from your furnace is a minor annoyance, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t get through your day. And a decline in heating power might not appear to be so much of a problem, just a slight inconvenience as you add an extra layer and wait for the home to reach the desired temperature setting.

However, these problems will not improve on their own. In fact, what’s far more likely is that the heating trouble will worsen. Consider this: when one part of your heating system is in need of repair, it still has a job to do. Often, the other parts step up in order to attempt to raise the temperature. This wears down multiple parts, resulting in a more costly repair than what was originally needed.

Furthermore, if you delay scheduling heating repair, your system may shut down entirely. When there’s not enough heat in the home, it may be due to a faulty blower fan. If the blower fan cannot push enough heat over the heat exchanger, the furnace plenum could overheat. Many decades ago, this may have resulted in very dangerous conditions (including a potential explosion), but today’s units have safety measures that prevent this. The furnace limit switch detects if the plenum is overheating and shuts off the unit. This keeps your home safe, but it also leaves you without any heat.

You should always take heating problems seriously, and you should not try to fix the trouble on your own or leave it to an untrained amateur. When it comes to gas heating systems, your health and safety may be at risk, and experts know the right way to inspect and diagnose a heating system while determining the proper method of repair.

Call Red Rock Mechanical today to schedule an appointment for our professional heating repair service in Essex, VT. Our team has years of experience installing and repairing both furnaces and boilers in the area and can get your unit back to normal fast.

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The Facts about Water Hammer

Friday, January 30th, 2015

Have you ever been disturbed by a loud knocking noise in your pipes? When this happens while you are comfortable resting at home, it may come as a bit of a shock. In fact, when homeowners believe that paranormal activity has occurred in a home, they often list knocking on the pipes as one of the reasons. But this noise actually has a far more probable explanation: water hammer.

Get the facts about water hammer in today’s post, and be sure to schedule plumbing repair in Essex, VT with the friendly technicians at Red Rock Mechanical at the first sign of pipe problems.

“Water Hammer” Describes a Particular Plumbing Event

Many people use the word “water hammer” to describe any strange noise in a plumbing system, assuming it’s a fairly universal term. But it turns out that water hammer is actually a specific event caused by changes to your plumbing system or an imbalance in the pipes. Water hammer occurs when there is a sudden change of pressure. If water is forced to stop suddenly, a wave of pressure forces it to change direction and knock against the pipes. This may happen because of a waterlogged air chamber or a valve that shuts too quickly.

Water Hammer May Severely Damage the Pipes

This change in momentum can actually cause some detriment to your pipes. The vibration that follows from the pressure wave may knock fittings loose and could even force a pipe to burst. This will result in costly renovations, an enormous mess, and the potential for mold growth.

What Works In Some Plumbing Systems May Not Work for Yours

Although many plumbing systems are fitted with air chambers that work to provide a cushion of air to protect against water hammer, these may become waterlogged and will need to be purged. In other cases, there are not enough protective features in your plumbing to safeguard against water hammer, and a technician may recommend any of several solutions. A new air chamber may not be possible because they are quite large, so your technician may prefer to install an arrester part. Sometimes, plumbers choose instead to install slowly-shutting valves or even new pipes.

Your best bet is to call an expert, like the plumbers at Red Rock Mechanical, to check out your pipes and decide on the optimal course of action for plumbing repair service in Essex, VT. Call us today!

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Common Problems You May Encounter with Your Heating

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Winter temperatures in Vermont may mean that we receive beautiful snowfalls, but they also mean that we must have durable heating systems in peak condition to keep us warm until the spring thaw. We have listed some common heating issues that you might encounter during the winter and what they may mean. If you think there is a malfunction with your heating system, don’t hesitate with calling for technicians. The problem will not improve and your heater may be in danger of a full breakdown…and that is the last thing you want to happen during one of the colder days of the year.

For fast and effective heating repair in Essex, VT and throughout Northwest Vermont, rely on the 24-hour emergency services of Red Rock Mechanical. We have served the area with quality comfort for over 23 years.

Frequent Home Heating Troubles

  • Insufficient heat: This problem can come from something as basic as a malfunctioning thermostat to a heating system that is too aged and worn down to work effectively. Call for a repair technician to determine what the trouble is and fix it or arrange for a replacement if that is the best option.
  • Weak airflow from the vents: If you have a furnace or heat pump in your home and you notice low levels of airflow coming from the vents, you should first check on the air filter to make sure it is not clogged with debris. If changing the air filter does not improve the airflow, you need to call on technicians to look for other possible causes.
  • Heater will not turn on: If your heater does not turn on when it should, the trouble could be a loss of communication with the thermostat. Another possibility is an electrical issue within the system, such as failed capacitors or electrical relays on motors.
  • Heater will not turn off: When a heater keeps running constantly, the likely culprit is an electrical failure that is preventing the blower from receiving the signal to turn off. Do not try to repair this problem on your own: it requires professionals.
  • Heating is too expensive: Should your heating bills begin to rise and you cannot explain why, then there is probably a malfunction in the heater that is making it overwork. Do not try to diagnose the cause on your own. Professional HVAC technicians can get to the bottom of the trouble fast and then handle the necessary repairs.

Whatever your concerns about home comfort during the winter, you can depend on Red Rock Mechanical for the heating repair in Essex, VT that will restore your indoor warmth. Call us any time.

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Reasons Your Gas Furnace Might Not Be Running

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

There are many reasons why your furnace may not operate. The problem could be something fairly simple, or it could be something quite serious. This range of possibilities leaves a lot of room for mistakes, especially if you attempt to repair the problem yourself without having expert knowledge of your system. Vermont winters are no time to be without heat, even for a short duration, so if your furnace won’t turn on, call the people you can count on for heating repair in Essex, VT: Red Rock Mechanical.

Why Won’t My Furnace Run?

Here are a few examples of why your furnace may not be turning on:

Dirty Air Filter

When your furnace’s air filter becomes too clogged, it can restrict the air flow in your system. Proper air flow is necessary for your system to work, so if the air filter blocks air flow, the system can eventually shut down. It is recommended that you change your air filter every 3 months to avoid having problems develop.

Thermostat Issues

Your thermostat controls when your furnace turns on and off; if problems develop with your thermostat, your heater may not turn on. Common problems that can affect how a thermostat operates are frayed or corroded wiring, dirt and dust on the instrumentation and dead batteries. It’s also important to make sure your thermostat hasn’t been accidentally switched to off or cooling, or that the program hasn’t been altered if you own a programmable thermostat. If you own an older mercury-based thermostat, it may be to be calibrated.

Problems with Ignition

Furnaces have either a standing pilot light or electronic ignition. When a furnace has a standing pilot, it also has a safety mechanism called a thermocouple. This component lets the system know that there is a pilot and it is viable for ignition. However, if there are problems with the thermocouple, there can be problems with ignition. The same is true for electronic ignition. There are two types of electronic ignition: hot surface ignition and intermittent pilot. The probe for hot surface ignition can crack, disabling it from heating properly, and if the right amount of electricity doesn’t flow to the intermittent pilot, the pilot can’t be lit.

As you can see, a wide range of problems can cause your furnace to breakdown. Instead of trying to figure it out yourself, call the experts you can trust for all of your heating repair service needs: Red Rock Mechanical.

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What Happens During Regular Plumbing Maintenance

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Plumbing maintenance can cover a wide range of different procedures and repairs, far too many to encompass in one article. Specific areas of the house that often need plumbing repair are far easier to discuss in short form, though. Let’s examine two of the areas in your home that likely need plumbing services the most often, and what that entails.

Kitchen

Kitchen plumbing experiences some of the most wear and tear of any home system. Chances are you use your kitchen sink, dishwasher, and garbage disposal every single day. This also makes these systems some of the most prone to issues.

The first thing your plumber is likely to do during a visit is check for leaks in your sink, faucet, and garbage disposal. Leaks can lead to all sorts of other issues like rust and mold growth, so it pays to find and fix them as soon as possible. Drains will be addressed next. If blockages are found, they can be cleared by snaking or solvent.

Bathroom

Just like the kitchen, the bathroom is used on a daily basis by homeowners. It is subjected to quite a bit of wear and tear over time, and after the kitchen it is the area that is often in the most need of repair. The first thing a plumber will check in a bathroom during a maintenance call is usually the shower. Shower leaks can waste many gallons of water if not properly addressed, making addressing them a top priority.

Drains are another area that are always addressed. A drain doesn’t have to be completely blocked to be a problem. Debris that collects in sink and shower drains can cause water to drain much more slowly, becoming a quite annoying issue.

Finally, toilets are checked to ensure that they are flushing properly and not running. A toilet has a number of moving parts that allow it to operate properly. Over time, these parts can degrade and cause issues. If your toilet is running constantly or won’t flush, you probably need to have a part in it replaced.

If you are having plumbing issues anywhere in your house, call Red Rock Mechanical. Our professional plumbing maintenance service covers all of Essex, VT.

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Some New Plumbing Installation Ideas for Your Home

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

When you want to improve your home, and perhaps save a little money on your monthly bills in the process, there are a lot of plumbing installation options available to you in Essex, VT. It can be difficult to decide whether you need to replace some components of your plumbing system, but in this guide we’ll show you why you may be more satisfied with low-flow toilets, a tankless water heater, or new sink installation.

Low-flow Toilets

Your current toilet may be responsible for a large portion of your water bills. Toilet use accounts for about 40% of your indoor water use, but, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, switching to a low-flush fixture may save you over 30% on your water bill. This is because low-flush toilets use greater pressure to flush as effectively as other toilets that rely on high volumes of water per flush.

Tankless Water Heater

If your existing water heater is nearing the end of its life, or if you’re looking for a unit for your new home, consider an efficient tankless water heater. Tankless systems are more efficient than other systems because there is no standby energy loss. While a storage tank water heater keeps water heated all day, a tankless unit heats water directly as it flows past the heating element and to your faucets whenever a hot water tap is turned on. Tankless heaters have a longer lifespan than storage tanks and may require fewer maintenance and repair visits.

New Sink Design

If your current sink doesn’t meet all of your needs, a plumbing company can install a new sink for aesthetic purposes or to create more space for storage and cleaning. For example, if you want your sink installed at a higher level to allow for more cabinet space in the bathroom, or if you want a sink with two bowls instead of one in your kitchen, a plumber can take care of installation for you.

Interested in making a few improvements to your home? Call the experts at Red Rock Mechanical for new plumbing installation in Essex, VT.

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Is Ductless Air Conditioning Right for My Home in Essex, VT?

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

Ducts are no longer a necessity for central air conditioning a home. The development of ductless mini split heat pumps, which were originally installed for commercial use, allows a homeowner to install a central AC without using space-consuming ductwork. Instead of a ventilation system, a ductless mini split uses a series of blowers mounted in different parts of the house. These blowers connect to a single outdoor unit, and they send conditioned air directly into the rooms.

Ductless air conditioning in Essex, VT has a number of benefits. Since these systems are heat pumps, they also work well for heating. The individual blowers allow for zone control of temperatures. And the lack of ducts means there is less dust and dirt contamination in the air.

However, ductless mini splits are not ideal for all homes. Before you commit to installation, call the experts at Red Rock Mechanical. We’ll help you decide if going ductless is the best way to cool and heat your home.

When is going ductless a good choice?

Ductless mini splits are excellent for the following situations:

  • New home construction – If you are planning on building a new home, a ductless configuration for your HVAC system is one of the best options available. You’ll save space without the need for ductwork, and you will also have greater design freedom since you no longer need to build around the requirements of a ventilation system.
  • Home remodeling – For a large-scale remodeling for your home, you can have the old ductwork taken out and replaced with a ductless system. As with building a new home, this allows you increased freedom for the redesign as well as additional living space.
  • Add-on rooms – When you decide to expand your home with an extra room, such as a den, game room, or new bedroom, you won’t have to worry about hooking it up to the current ventilation system or replacing your current air conditioner because it cannot supply enough cool air for the additional space. Instead, you can hook up a separate ductless AC for the room.
  • Old and historic homes – If you live in an older home that lacks ducts and does not have the space to install them, then ductless mini split heat pumps will allow you to have central air conditioning rather than needing to rely on inefficient window units.

However, if your home already has an extensive and effective ventilation system and you aren’t planning to remodel, there usually isn’t a reason to install a ductless system. It’s more cost-effective to install a central air conditioner (or heat pump) and hook it up to the pre-existing ductwork.

Whatever type of air conditioner or heat pump you eventually have installed, you can count on the team at Red Rock Mechanical to handle the work. If you think that ductless air conditioning in Essex, VT is right for your home, contact us today.

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Steps to Take with Emergency Plumbing

Friday, June 27th, 2014

What counts as a plumbing emergency will change from household to household, although most of us would agree that the following issues almost universally qualify as an “emergency”:

  • Massive leaks threatening flooding
  • Clogs in sinks and showers that receive daily use
  • Sewer line troubles leading to sewage flooding
  • Loss of water from the water main

There are different procedures to follow depending on the situation, but there are some general steps you should take when it comes to emergencies like huge leaks. Just make sure that one of the steps you take is to call for professional plumbing services if you live in Essex, VT, especially one that offers 24-hour emergency plumbing service like Red Rock Mechanical. We’ve done speedy emergency work for over 23 years, and you can trust us with whatever ails your plumbing.

Take the Following Steps in a Plumbing Emergency

  • Shut off the water: In most emergency situations, you’ll have serious leaking issues such a burst pipes and broken connections that could cause flooding. You should know where the water main shut-off valve is located and how to use it. (Go learn about this right now if you don’t know it already.) You should also know where individual shut-off valves are for fixtures, so that if one fixture is causing the problem, you can shut if off on its own—but when in doubt, shut down the water to the whole house.
  • Turn of the water heater: You should do this regardless of whether the water heater seems to be involved with the problem or not. Once you turn off the water main, the water heater must go off as well to prevent the water heater from continuing to heat the supply inside it, leading to bursting and the danger of scalding.
  • Call for emergency plumbing assistance: Now that you’ve stopped immediate dangers to your home, stay relaxed and call a plumbing service that offers 24-hour emergency work. Explain the situation clearly to them so the plumbers will be ready with the proper assistance.
  • Temporarily seal leaks: Now that the plumbers are on their way, use plumber’s epoxy or Teflon tape to stop any visible leaks. Place buckets under the leaks as well to prevent as much water damage as possible to your house. If you lack sealant, you can use rags and towels around the leaks to absorb water—these are only temporary solutions for an hour or so, but they will help prevent damage to your home.
  • Use the plunger: If you have sink clogs, take out the sink plunger and attempt to clear the blockage this way. Plungers are safe for plumbing, although not always effective. If the plunger does not work, do not resort to chemical cleaners, which are hazardous for you and your drains. The professionals are already on their way… wait for them to safely fix the issue.

Remember to keep calm and carry on: if you have contacted a reliable plumbing service in Essex, VT, you should have few worries no matter the plumbing emergency. With Red Rock Mechanical on your side, you will have the problem fixed in no time. Give us a call today to schedule your next service appointment with us.

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3 Reasons to Hire a Plumber Instead of Performing Repairs Yourself

Friday, May 16th, 2014

When you encounter repair problems with your plumbing, is your first impulse to pick up the phone and call for a plumber, or pick up a tool belt and try to troubleshoot the job on your own? If it’s the second, we understand: the urge toward “do-it-yourself” solutions is strong today, especially when you can search the Internet and find dozen of articles explaining homebrew fixes for almost any problem. However, you still shouldn’t attempt to do plumbing repairs on your own. The first impulse—call the professionals!—is the better one for both the long and short term, as we’ll explain.

It’s easy to reach a skilled plumber whenever you need plumbing repair in Essex, VT: call Red Rock Mechanical, where we offer 24-hour emergency service to handle any problems with your home’s plumbing. Put your trust into our more than 20 years of experience.

3 Reasons to Call a Plumber

  1. Equipment: A tool belt and a variety of wrenches of different gauges isn’t enough to handle most plumbing repairs. Professional plumbers use an array of advanced equipment to facilitate repair work, most of which are too expensive and too complicated for consumer use. Motorized drain snakes, hydro-jetters, and sophisticated leak detection devices are among the many advanced tools that plumbers will bring to a job.
  2. Less risk of additional damage: It’s easy when doing amateur repair fixes to accidentally cause additional damage. This is especially true when trying to fix leaky pipes: you can end up creating an even larger leak that might cause serious water damage to your home. Professional plumbers have the training necessary to not only tackle a repair need, but prevent it from causing additional issues: they get the job done right the first time.
  3. Save money: Yes, it’s usually less expensive to hire a plumber from the start rather than to attempt the job yourself. The reason for this is amateur plumbing often leads to larger repair issues that will force you to call for a plumber anyway—only now the plumber has an even bigger repair to take care of than before. More insidious are the smaller problems you might cause to your plumbing that will cost you money due to water leaking and high pressure in the pipes.

Remember that not all professional plumbers are equal: make sure that when you need plumbing repair in Essex, VT that you call for the most experienced plumbers available. Red Rock Mechanical has a staff of top-notch plumbing professionals with many years of hands-on work providing effective repairs. Call us any time of the day or night when you need skilled work on your home’s plumbing.

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