Red Rock Mechanical, LLC Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Gas Furnace’

Can My Furnace Explode? (And a Few Other Questions)

Monday, March 18th, 2019

gas-flames-furnaceFurnaces are found in more homes than any other type of central heating system. Ironically, they’re also not well understood by the average homeowner, and that’s probably because they are so common; they’re easy to take for granted.

You don’t need to be a furnace expert to have a good working furnace—that’s why you have professionals like us to help with any furnace service or other heater repair in Burlington, VT you may require. In fact, only professionals with licenses to work on gas-powered heaters should ever handle service on a furnace.

But extra knowledge is always helpful, and homeowners often have questions about the furnace. Below are two of the most urgent people have—plus a bonus one that pops up as well.

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Last Minute Furnace Repairs—Don’t Ignore Them

Monday, April 2nd, 2018

hand-holding-wrenchThe weather is still cool-to-cold here, and who knows what sudden shifts may occur through the rest of April and even in to May? You are probably still running your furnace during the evenings and sometimes the days as well. If you think your furnace is showing signs that something is wrong, like a loss of heating power or strange sounds from the cabinets, make sure you call a professional to repair the system right away.

When you read that last sentence, did a pestering voice in your head say, “Why bother? The furnace is about to shut down for the warm season. There’s not much point in hustling to get a minor problem fixed now. Wait it out.”

Please don’t listen to that nagging part of your brain! Ignoring furnace repairs, no matter the time of year, is bad for your comfort, your bills, and even your safety. We’ll explain further.

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Start Considering Furnace Replacement Options

Monday, March 5th, 2018

technician-examines-furnace“Spring hasn’t even arrived yet, and yet I should be thinking about replacing my furnace?”

Yes! Your current furnace is still working away, and will continue to do so until the warmth finally settles in. But the “spring/summer break” for your furnace is an ideal time to make plans to replace it. The point when you need the furnace the least is the time to have it taken out and a new one put in, because…

  • You’ll be far ahead of the next cold weather and won’t have to worry about cramming in an installation in fall.
  • Local HVAC contractors don’t have schedules that are packed during the spring and can find a convenient time to arrange for the work.
  • You’ll have enough time to review your options carefully for a new furnace installation.

Let’s take a deeper look into that last point. Choosing a new furnace is trickier than it may seem, especially if you’ve never had to have one replaced.

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Mid-Winter and Your Furnace: Why You May Need Service

Monday, January 22nd, 2018

woman-in-sweaterThe middle of the winter is the point when you may have concerns about the performance of your home’s furnace. It’s wise to be on the lookout for potential problems. It’s not only the coldest time of the year, but the furnace has done a half season of work and has another half ahead of it.

There are a number of reasons why you may need to have professionals give your furnace a look and make fixes and adjustments in mid-winter. Schedule your heater service in Burlington, VT or the surrounding areas to ensure you don’t have a furnace that fails for any of the following reasons:

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The End of Winter: Watch for These Heating Troubles

Monday, February 27th, 2017

winter-weather-sceneThe official end of winter and the start of spring is March 20, less than a month away. But as anybody who has lived for a few years in Northwest Vermont and Northeast New York can tell you, the weather is extremely unpredictable during this last period of winter. The saying that March “enters like a lamb and leaves like a lion” (and sometimes vice versa) is a short way of saying that you never quite know what the temperatures are going to be like until it finally settles into spring weather. Your heating system still has some work ahead of it.

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More About Furnace Efficiency: Why Are New Furnaces More Efficient?

Monday, January 30th, 2017

furnace-burners-against-blackLast week we went into details about gas furnace efficiencies, specifically the AFUE rating and whether it means you’ll save energy with a high-efficiency furnace or not. It’s a question that is best left to a professional to answer.

However, we want you know that we definitely encourage consumers to look into high-efficiency furnace options when they start looking around for a new installation or a replacement for an older heater. The AFUE ratings of furnaces are higher than they’ve ever been: older furnaces used to average between 56% and 70% AFUE ratings, which meant wasting between 44% and 30% of the natural gas the furnace burned. Today, furnaces range from 85% to 98.5% AFUE, and the ENERGY STAR requirement for a furnace is 90%.

But why exactly are furnaces able to perform at such energy-saving levels today? There are several reasons.

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The Dangers of a Cracked Heat Exchanger in a Furnace

Monday, November 21st, 2016

Are you one of the many people who use a natural gas furnace to provide heat for the winter? If so, then you probably understand why they’re so popular for home comfort: gas furnaces are dependable and provide a level of heating that few other systems can top—and that’s especially important in our part of the country, when it gets cold.

You need to take some special precautions with gas furnaces, however. They aren’t automatically dangerous—they’re built with safety uppermost in mind—but they may run into some troubles that might lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. (Always have CO detectors in your home if you use natural gas.) Perhaps the most worrying problem is a cracked heat exchanger, which we’re going to look at now.

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To Replace or Not to Replace? That Is the Annual Furnace Question

Monday, September 26th, 2016

This is a topic we bring up at the start of each fall, because it’s important for homeowners to keep tabs on the furnaces that heat their homes through the winter. Each fall, you need to ask if your furnace will make it through the next winter in good shape, performing at high energy efficiency levels, and without safety concerns. Eventually, you will need to have the furnace replaced—no mechanical device can last forever—and maybe this is the year to schedule the replacement job with our HVAC professionals.

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Should You Replace Your Furnace This Fall?

Monday, September 28th, 2015

It’s almost October, and before you know it you’ll be clearing away Halloween decorations, then Thanksgiving dinner leftovers… and the cold weather will be here! Right now is the ideal time to make sure that the furnace in your home is prepared to handle the chill. One of the best ways to do that is to schedule annual maintenance from a professional.

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Some Problems You May Encounter with Your Gas Furnace

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

In Montpelier, VT, furnaces are common in many homes. Gas furnaces are inexpensive to operate and very reliable, but like any mechanical system, they will experience breakdowns from time to time. You can call a reliable repair service to resolve the problem, but it helps to spot the signs of those problems as soon as possible, before they lead to more serious issues. Here’s a quick breakdown of some problems you may encounter with your gas furnace.

  • Lack of gas flow. The thermocouple, connected to your ignition system, controls the flow of gas into the heater. If there’s a problem with your ignition system, or indeed with the thermocouple itself, the gas will be shut off (preventing your home from being flooded with the gas but also rendering the heater non-functional until it is fixed). A clogged burner can also disrupt the gas flow, as can problems with the line feeding the gas into the furnace.
  • Lack of heat. A lack of heat usually comes back to a problem with the burners, which push the lit gas through the heat exchanger to warm the air that is ultimately blown into your home. Burners can suffer from a malfunction, and could also become clogged with grime on their surface, which will reduce the levels of heat they generate.
  • Lack of air flow. Low air flow is just as bad as reduced heat, since it forces your furnace to work harder and expend more energy than it should. Low air flow can stem from a faulty motor, a damaged blower fan, or some kind of obstruction in the duct system reducing the space in which the air can move.

The problems you may encounter with your gas furnace don’t matter as much as the service you call upon to correct them. If you need furnace repair in Montpelier, VT, call Red Rock Mechanical today. 

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