The Top Commercial HVAC Problems: Solved

Studies have shown that your employees’ productivity, work satisfaction, and mood while at work can be affected by the temperature in your building. Even further, your health and the health of your employees is impacted by the air you breathe all day and that air is impacted by your commercial HVAC system.

We encourage all of our commercial customers in the same way – to take preventative maintenance seriously and to monitor system function. However, even in the best-case scenario, problems can happen and repairs can become necessary. Look for the following warning signs to know it’s time to take care of your system.

Commercial HVAC Problems: Warning Signs

  • Poor-quality of breathable air
  • Knocking, or other strange sounds
  • Airflow issues or a lack of temperature performance
  • Quick-rise in costs to operate your system

These warning signs – or any other anomalies in your system’s performance or behavior – could indicate that you have one of the following common commercial HVAC problems.

What are the Top Commercial HVAC Problems?

1. Your Air Filter Needs Cleaning or Replacement

One of the quickest and easiest ways to self-diagnose and DIY repair your commercial HVAC system is to check on the filter. If you find that your system isn’t performing well enough or that it is behaving erratically, checking in on the filter and changing it out is a great instant-fix. If your filter is filthy, your air conditioning or heating system will need to work harder to push air through the filter. Further, the quality of air that you and your employees breathe will obviously be affected. For optimal performance, replace your filter quarterly. You may find – especially if your building is industrial or involved in dirty work – that you require more frequent filter replacements as well.

2. Your Refrigerant is Leaking

Refrigerant is a liquid substance that allows your air conditioning system to work; it cools the air that moves through your system. With too little refrigerant, your system will perform poorly and your building’s air conditioning will feel too warm. This is a dual issue – your employees will be hot and mad at you, but your system will also be doing overtime and this could lead to issues.

3. Your Thermostat is Malfunctioning

If your building is too hot, too cold, or if the temperature fluctuates more than you’d prefer – your thermostat may be the cause. Troubleshoot your thermostat by testing various temperature settings and testing your system’s ability to meet the determined temperature with a thermometer. Many commercial building owners “set it and forget it” and neglect to check in on their thermostat, so they fail to realize that it is displaying an error or a blank screen.

4. Your HVAC System Needs Maintenance

Commercial HVAC Systems require as much – or more – maintenance than residential HVAC systems. Routine maintenance provides that minor HVAC issues that come up – and they do! – can be taken care of before they become highly expensive and complicated.  Complete system failure is common mostly among systems that do not receive consistent maintenance. If you find that your system is performing unsatisfactorily or behaving in a way that concerns you, we always suggest

As the owner and operator of a commercial building, it is important for you to understand all of the systems that make your building work while you work. Your air quality and the temperatures your team lives with while working every day impact your productivity, your health, and your happiness. By being proactive about the maintenance of your HVAC system you can preven the issues covered here today.

We would like to help! If you are ready to set up a proactive and preventive maintenance plan with a dedicated professional OR if your system is underperforming and you require a check-up, call us. We’re waiting by the phone!

Home Heating Boiler Guide

The majority of homes within the United States are heated by either a furnace, a boiler or a heat pump. Furnaces generate hot air to distribute via ductwork throughout the house. Boilers generate steam or hot water to be used in either steam radiators or baseboard and in-floor radiators. Heat pumps work by transferring the available heat in a cold space to a warmer space.

25 Dollar -- Boilers -- 06-02-16

 

Boilers come in many models to suit the needs of a particular home just like furnaces and heat pumps. So what options do you have? Generally speaking, you will have three main variables:

  • Condensing/non-condensing
  • Combination boiler (Provides heat and hot water)
  • Standard & system boilers

Condensing and Non-Condensing Boilers

When boilers were first used for home heating they weren’t terribly efficient and wasted a good deal of energy in the form of steam that was vented directly to the atmosphere. Today you have the option of purchasing a condensing boiler for the home.

These boilers gain an additional 10-15% efficiency over their non-condensing counterparts by using that otherwise wasted steam to raise the initial temperature of the water going into the unit. Condensing boilers can be had on standard, system, and combination boilers.

Combination Boilers

Combination boilers provide hot water for the home was well as providing heat. The hot water they generate is on an as-needed basis and it will require access to the main supply of water to the home. These boilers, especially if they are the condensing type, are extremely efficient as the hot water generated is not kept at a specific temperature over long periods of time as in a standard boiler. Combi boilers also have the advantage of not taking up much space in the home, with some even being wall-mounted.

Standard Boilers and System Boilers

Standard and system boilers share a lot in common, differing only by the locations of their water storage tanks. In these two types of boiler hot and cold water storage is required. In the standard boiler the storage tanks are often in the attic or loft. For the system boiler they are built into the device itself, saving space and making for a less complex installation. These two systems are available in condensing and non-condensing types, as well.

There is a boiler to suit the needs of every home. If you would like to discuss your options in boilers for the home, give us at $25 Heating & Air Conditioning a call!

A Quick Guide to Purchasing Water Heaters

In the Market for a New Water Heater?

Water heaters have a finite lifespan and will need to be replaced when they have outlived their efficiency and proper functioning. There are some new options you have that might not have been available the last time that you chose a water heater. The new models also offer better efficiency ratings than what was available even five years ago.

water-heaters

What are My Options for Water Heaters?

Over the last ten years or so heating water has become less power-intensive than it once was. Higher efficiency ratings and new methods of providing hot water have meant big savings to home owners. While there are still traditional tank-style water heaters (With higher efficiencies) there are a few newer options such as solar, heat pump, and in-line water heaters.

Each system has their advantages and disadvantages and depending on your use patterns, house size, and hot water requirements will determine which one is best for your needs.

Tank-Style Water Heaters

The tank-style water heaters are the ones that most people are familiar with. These consist of a large centralized tank where large quantities of hot water are kept at a high temperature for immediate use. These systems can use either gas or electricity to heat the water and come in a variety of sizes. Their main disadvantage is potentially higher energy use due to their size and constant temperature.

Solar Water Heaters

Solar water heaters are a great option for those in areas with lots of sunshine and as a supplemental heating system. These heaters work by using the energy from the sun to heat an antifreeze-like liquid whose heat is then transferred to the household water via a heat exchanger. This offers a

great savings on heating water as the energy to do so is free. Their disadvantage is the need for lots of sunshine and their initial cost and complexity of adding the system to existing hot water heating systems.

Heat Pump Water Heaters

Heat pump water heaters are another type of heating using available energy that would otherwise not be used. They work by pumping ambient air into a heat exchanger in contact with the water and transferring the available heat to the water. This raises the ‘resting’ temperature of the water in a very energy-efficient way and is then further heated much like the tank-style systems.

In-Line Water Heaters

In-line water heating is one of the most energy efficient ways to heat water. These units are installed close to the intended point of use, for heating water only as it is needed. This often necessitates having several units installed, and is their main disadvantage. The initial cost is higher with these systems, but is offset by their energy savings.

What Water Heater is Best for You?

Still not sure which is the best option for you? $25 Plumbing, Heating, & Air Conditioning would love to take your call and meet with you to discuss your options and the best for for you. Call us today with your questions!

Important Information About Water Heaters

Have you ever tried to imagine living without a water heater?

It probably gives you the cold chills just to think about it.

But if you’re planning to purchase a new water heater soon, you shouldn’t just buy the cheapest unit you can find. Nor should you automatically purchase a duplicate of your existing water heater. You need to put some real thought into it before you commit to anything, and you need to learn a bit more about this technology before you proceed.

 

Tank versus Tankless Water Heaters: A Comparative Analysis

The number one question you have to ask yourself before you buy a new water heater is this: do you want a traditional water heater with a storage tank, or a tankless unit that will produce hot water on demand?

In the United States water heaters with storage tanks are more common. But the tankless option has much to recommend it.

In comparison to storage tank models, tankless water heaters:

  • Will reduce energy bills by an extra 10-20 percent.
  • Occupy less than half as much space, allowing for easy installation in closets or under sinks.
  • Last five to 10 years longer (tankless water heaters suffer no interior corrosion).
  • Deliver hot water far more quickly.

And in contrast to tank-type units, they won’t run out of hot water no matter how long you stay in the shower (that’s what “on demand” means).

More Important Facts about Water Heaters

There are a few other things to keep in mind as your search for a new water heater commences …

  • If your old water heater was installed seven years ago or longer, a new energy-efficient model could reduce your annual costs for heating water by 25 percent or more.
  • Water heaters that run on natural gas will consume just one-third the energy of an electric model.
  • If you decide to stick with the traditional storage tank model you should investigate heat pump water heaters, which cost more to purchase and install but are up to three times as energy-efficient as conventional tank-type units.
  • New water heaters come with Energy Guide labels that reveal their productive capacity or size. This is measured in gallons of hot water delivered per hour for tank-type units and maximum hot water flow rate for tankless versions. These labels also tell you how much a water heater will cost you to operate over a period of one year. To properly calculate the size of water heater you need in your home, you can consult the Department of Energy website for assistance.
  • If you’re interested in renewable energy, you might want to consider a solar-powered hot water system. They are more expensive than conventional types but are quite energy-efficient over the long term.

Want to Know Even More about Water Heaters? Ask the Experts at $25 Plumbing

Inland Empire area residents, if you would like to discuss your water heater situation with professionals, please contact $25 Plumbing right away. We are an authorized dealer of Noritz Tankless Water Heaters, which are the most cost-efficient/energy-efficient models on the market today.

We think tankless is a fantastic option for most homeowners, and if you agree we could have your new tankless water heater installed and up in running in no time. But regardless, we will be happy to answer all your questions and provide you with all the information you need to make the best decision for you and your family.

Please visit our blog on a regular basis for more fascinating facts about plumbing, heating, cooling and indoor air quality maintenance.

When Should You Replace Your Old Water Heater?

Installing a water heater in your home is very crucial during freezing temperatures as it provides adequate hot water for your family. But many a times, the water heater may fail to perform its core work efficiently. This may be due to several problems that may need urgent remedies. The following tips should inform you well before considering water heater replacement.

Common Problems of Water Heaters and Remedies

Gas and electricity are the primary heat sources for water heaters. When your gas or electric water heater is not functioning to its capacity, be sure to check that gas is connected, and the pilot light is lit, adjust thermostat temperature setting, insulate hot water pipes, flush the tank to remove sediments as well as replace the faulty thermostat and the heating element. As for electric water heaters, connect he power supply cable properly to the water heater and that power is available.

When to Consider Water Heater Replacement

To replace your water, be informed. First, test the water after turning on the heater. If the water is cold or it takes some time to heat up, there is an underlying problem. Check for leaks around the fittings and connections as well as a pool of water below the tank. Take time to listen for any noises in the reservoir. The presence of pops, clanging noises or any other weird noise, indicate that the tank has problems. The above signs including the age of the tank are enough to alert you that it is time to replace your water heater.

Maintenance of Water Heaters

Water heaters typically last between 8 to 12 years with proper maintenance. It is the steps and precautions taken from time to time that will determine the life expectancy of a water heater. To increase or avoid frequent breakdowns, be sure to drain the tank once every one or two years depending on the frequency of use, replace faulty relief valve as well as reset the thermostat to 120 degrees so as to avoid tank overheating.

Things to consider when looking for a water heater

Consider water holding capacity as 40 and 50-gallon tanks are common. The recovery rate, efficiency ratings and size are crucial as well. To keep your home comfortable, follow us for more articles that will keep your heating and cooling systems running efficiently.

Troubleshooting Water Heater Problems

Learning to recognize the signs of water heater problems can help you make the wisest decision when you are trying to decide if you need to call for professional help. Some problems are easy enough to solve on your own and that can save you money on an unnecessary repair bill. It is just as important to realize when the problem is bigger than you can handle so you can call for service without any delay.

If the water coming out of the tap is not hot enough or too hot, the first thing you should do is adjust the temperature using the dial on the water heater.

If the water is still too hot or you see excess steam coming out of the faucets, the heater may not be shutting off at the proper temperature. Another sign of this problem is a sound like boiling water coming from the heater. The problem may be a faulty or worn temperature relief valve and you will need to replace it.

If the water is still too cold after adjusting the temperature, you may need to flush the tank to eliminate any mineral deposits that can interfere with the equipment’s efficiency.

In some cases, the dip tube may be cracked or broken. The dip tube supplies the tank with cold water near the bottom of the tank. When the tube malfunctions, cold water spills in on top and mixes with hot water. You should contact a qualified water heater technician for replacement.

Mineral deposits in the tank or a problem with the heater’s anode rod can cause the hot water coming from your faucets to smell like rotten eggs. Flushing the tank will eliminate mineral build up. If the water still smells foul after flushing, the culprit is probably the anode rod reacting with the sulfates in the water. A water heater technician can replace the anode rod for you.

Taking care of the small problems by yourself can save you money but you are better off leaving the technical work up to a trained professional with the expertise and tools necessary to make the proper repairs.

Follow us for more articles on how to save money and keep your home’s plumbing system running efficiently.

Everything You Need To Know About Water Heaters

Boiler roomA few years ago,the water heater was the single largest load in a typical home. Today, however, new technologies have made them more efficient, accounting for less than 18 percent of your energy bill. Water heaters provide your home with hot water for bathing and washing among other things. The following are the most popular types of water heaters.

1. Conventional Water Heaters

These are the most popular water heating systems in the world. They come with a huge tank that can hold between 20 to 80 gallons of water. They also have a heat source, which may be an electric heater, or a furnace that burns heating oil, natural gas, propane, coal or wood among other types of fossil fuels. Natural gas is an inexpensive fuel and it is readily available in most parts of the country, so it is the most popular energy source for conventional water heaters.

2. Instant or Tankless Water heaters

As the name suggests, these heaters do not have a storage tank. The heating system is usually activated on demand. For instance, if you want to have a hot shower, all you need to do is turn it on. Most tankless heaters use electricity, but some models are powered by natural gas or propane. By eliminating standby losses, these heaters can cut your energy bill by up to 20 percent.

3. Solar Water Heaters

This is one of the most cost effective water heating solutions available today. In fact, it is basically free. Once the cost of producing and setting up the solar hot water system has been offset, you can enjoy free hot water for life. The system consists of a water tank and a collector. The latter is responsible for heating water using sunlight. Solar water heaters are perfect for heating the pool. They are also best suited for use in states and countries that receive intense sunlight throughout the year.

4. Heat Pump Water Heaters

This is one of the most revolutionary technologies in the heating industry. A heat pump is basically a refrigerator working in reverse. It uses electrical energy to move heat from one location and dumps it where water needs to be cooled.

Choosing the right water heater is the key to achieving energy efficiency in your home. Call us for all heating and air conditioning needs.

Replacing A Furnace? Five Things To Think About Before You Do

Furnace ManReplacing your furnace can be a stressful proposition. The average life of a heating unit is between 10 and 20 years, meaning this is a purchase that one does not make often. Because of that, along with ever-changing technology over the past decade, furnace replacement can be confusing. Before you invest several thousand dollars in a new unit, follow these tips to guide your purchase.

Monitor Furnace Performance
The first thing to look at is the furnace’s age. If it’s more than 12 years old, it’s a good candidate for replacement. Repeated repairs also point to a new furnace. If you note an increase in utility bills without an increase in usage, your furnace may be losing efficiency. Other signs include systems that run longer than normal, needs a higher thermostat setting or makes funny noises are also cause for concern.

Educate Yourself
If you believe your furnace needs replacement, find out as much as possible about your system and learn whether the problems you have are typical. Do any warranties or recalls apply to your unit? Gathering such information will arm you with what you need to talk intelligently with industry professionals and will help you to understand how they operate as well as helping you avoid being cheated on servicing.

Act Before Temperatures Get Cold
Replace your furnace before you need it most so you are not caught waiting for service when the weather is freezing. Furnace replacement generally takes a full day, so it makes sense to plan ahead and avoid an uncomfortable day while the new heating system is installed.

Get a Furnace Tune-Up
Even if you’re sure you need a new furnace, get it tuned up first for added security. During a tune-up, a qualified technician will examine your furnace and should be able to confirm or dismiss the need for replacement. Even if you don’t need a new system, you’ll optimize your current investment and postpone the need for purchasing a new unit.

Get a Professional’s Opinion
A professional analysis of your home’s heating needs is also essential to proper furnace replacement. By educating yourself beforehand, you’ll be better able to understand the options that are available for your home.

Temperature Control Tips & Tricks For HVAC Systems

Air Condioner Repairman ThumbsupIf you want your AC units to run efficiently then you should follow some HVAC tips. A lot of people are ignorant about how to care for their HVAC systems, which is why they face problems when the summer season sets in. To prevent this from happening, it is advisable to call for a professional tune-up before the summer season arrives, this way the AC unit would be all prepped up for giving an optimum performance throughout summer.

It is also advisable to have the air filter of the AC unit cleaned thoroughly every month. You can also have it changed every month, if it is feasible for you. It is best to invest in electrostatic filters as these give an impressive performance. If you are taking out the air filters for cleaning then be mindful of the fact that the AC should not run without the filter. Also, ensure that the filter is completely dry before fitting it back into the device.

In case of outdoor condenser units, one of the most useful HVAC tips is to have the debris or leaves removed from the outdoor condenser units for best results. Also, don’t forget to clean the coils, fan grills and fan blades of such outdoor units. For a thorough cleaning, you can use a hose to spray away all the dust and debris stuck to such components. Before hosing the unit, you should cover the motors and other essential components with plastic bags so that they do not get wet. A lot of times, people forget to clean the base pan of outdoor condenser units, which are located at its base. Cleaning this out is most likely to make a huge different in the unit’s performance therefore you might as well carry out this chore.

When checking HVAC systems it also helps to take a look at the fan because sometimes the blades may be striking an object in its way. The blade also becomes bent at times, thus causing it to become unbalanced. As far as possible, you can fix this issue with your bare hands otherwise you can have the blades replaced.

For any HVAC related needs, give us a call at (909)786-2808.

Water Heater Troubleshooting Services Featured Online With Proven Results

Smiling plumber at workWhen it comes to water heater troubleshooting, there are some proven methods used by professional plumbing contractors to solve any heater repair issue. In fact, there is a longstanding point of view that it is far better to maintain your water heater now before problems arises. The common problems that occur with home water heaters are often linked to a faulty temperature control valve or not getting enough hot water.

Common water heater problems explained

Another aspect of water heater repairs and troubleshooting is linked to calling a plumber as soon as possible to sort out whatever is ailing the heater. For instance, there are proven methods used by plumbers to sort out why an electric or gas water storage heater is not working properly. The best advice is to trust your water heater maintenance and repair to someone with the skill and expertise to troubleshoot repairs or plumbing related issues.

Water heating complaints linked to temperature

While a faulty water heater is somewhat easy for a trained plumber to sort out, this is not often the case with a homeowner who thinks he or she can perform their own do-it-yourself repairs on a typical water heater that contains 50 or more gallons of super-heated water. Thus, there is a real safety issue when someone not familiar with water heater repair or servicing attempts to save a few bucks by doing it themselves. The results can be dangerous and costly, say plumbing professionals commenting online about water heater repairs that originated with the owner making mistakes.

Meanwhile, there are some practical common sense water heater maintenance tips that include:

– Getting foam pipe insulation for all hot water pipes, including those pipes leading to your home water heater.

– Ensure there is regular maintenance and periodic check-ups performed by a professional plumber to save both time and money on costly repairs related to ailing heating systems.

– Perform regular checks of the water heater’s temperature range so that it sits at about 150 degrees F or lower. This check of the temperature is a safety concern for homeowners with small children or elderly who may become injured due to super-heated water coming out of sick or tub faucets.

In general, a typical home water heater requires regular professional maintenance if it is to perform and operate properly.

Overall, there are many proven solutions to sort out any water heater problem both efficiently and effectively. Call us for all your water heater and plumbing needs.