Bartels Heating & Cooling Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Fairfield’

What is a Thermocouple?

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

What is a thermocouple? In the shortest possible terms, it’s a vital component in your gas heating system, controlling the flow of gas into your system. In some cases, it’s actually a part of your pilot light or electric ignition system: bound in a single unit. It serves as a key safety feature which can literally render your heater inoperable. Here in Fairfield, OH, heating repair services can fix or replace a broken thermocouple, but that still doesn’t explain how, exactly it does its job.

The thermocouple begins with two wires, usually made of differing metals and joined together in a circuit. A voltmeter or similar measuring device is often attached to the wires. One end is placed in a position where the temperature does not vary (such as an ice bath or a sealed container), and the other end is placed in close proximity to the pilot light. When the light comes on the voltmeter detects the differences in temperature (usually requiring a certain specific difference), and signals for the thermocouple to release the gas and start the heating process.

The purpose of this is to ensure that the gas isn’t released when there’s nothing to ignite it, preventing your house from flooding with gas (which can create a serious safety hazard). Most heaters will shut the gas off automatically if the thermocouple becomes damaged, another safety step to keep the gas from flooding your home. (As frustrating as it can be, the heater’s inability to turn on without a functioning thermocouple is a good thing.)

On the other hand, it still won’t heat your home, which means you need a reliable repair service to come in and deal with the problem. If you need Fairfield, OH heating repair services, call Bartels Heating & Cooling, who has the expertise to repair or replace your thermocouple quickly. We pride ourselves on our professionalism, and won’t rest until you’re completely satisfied with our work. If you’re having trouble with your furnace, then pick up the phone and give us a call!

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Is Garage Heating a Worthwhile Investment?

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Is garage heating in your Fairfield, OH home a worthwhile investment? In all honesty, that depends on your particular needs. Your heating system is very important, particularly during the winter months when the snows are falling. Your garage is a part of your home like any other, and in many cases it will require some form of heating. In order to make that decision you need to weigh the costs of such a move against the benefits if will provide.

Most garages benefit from at least some sort of heating. Cold can damage things you’re storing there, and if you keep your car in the garage, you want it to stay at least moderately warm so that it will start in the morning when you need it to. On the other hand, the garage’s space may place additional strain on your existing heater, and if your garage isn’t insulated, then you’ll need to consider adding some in order to make the most out of your investment.

One possibility is to add a separate heater to cover your garage. This allows you to tailor the size of it to fit the garage’s needs without placing an additional load on your home heater. It also means you don’t have to run ducts or water lines to the garage from your house: an important consideration if your garage is a detached unit. It also allows you to tailor the temperature in your garage. Since you probably won’t be using it very often, you can set the temperature fairly low – say, 50 degrees or ever cooler – while keeping your home a toastier temperature.

Regardless of the specifics, a good heating service can advise you of your options. Here at Bartels Heating & Cooling, we can take care of any Fairfield, OH heating service you need. We’ll inspect your home to help determine if garage heating is a worthwhile investment, then make our recommendations to you before setting up an installation schedule that meets your needs. Pick up the phone and give us a call today.

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Is it Time to Try Something Different for Heating?

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

Heating in Fairfield, OH has traditionally relied on boilers and furnaces: proven, effective technology that has been in place for a long time. We live in the 21st century, however, and while those forms of heating work well for many homes, you may want to consider something new. Alternate forms of heating often cost less to run and are more environmentally friendly, though specifics depend on the particular nature of your home. Is it time to try something different for heating in Fairfield, OH? Only you can answer that question, but some of the more popular options are outlined below.

  • Radiant heat systems. This system involves tubes or electric coils installed in your floorboards to warm the room. It works extremely well because the warmth goes directly to furniture and occupants, instead of blowing around in the air. That means it costs less to run that traditional boilers or furnaces, and you don’t have to worry about drafts or cold spots. The downside is that it takes a great deal of time and effort to install, since your floors need to undergo serious alteration. The rewards can be worth it, however, both in terms of monthly savings and in terms of the resale value of your house.
  • Geothermal systems. Geothermal systems draw upon the ambient heat of the ground, which stays the same year round and which can be used to warm your home. Tubing is run through the ground on your property, facilitating a heat exchange which then brings the heat inside. You usually need a certain amount of space for geothermal heating, but like radiant systems, they can save a great deal of money in monthly costs.
  • Heat pumps. Heat pumps combine the functions of a heater and an air conditioning system, using refrigerant to heat your home in the winter and cool it in the summer. They don’t cost much to run each month and installation isn’t as invasive as it would be for radiant heat systems or geothermal heat systems. They often require an auxiliary heater for the coldest days, however.

If you’ve decided that it’s time to try something different for heating in Fairfield, call the NATE-certified experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling. We’ll discuss your options with you and help you find the perfect heating system for your home!

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Fairfield, OH Heating Tip: How Humidity Impacts Heating

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

In Fairfield, OH, heating systems often need to contend with humidity as well as high temperatures.  Southern Ohio can get very humid all year round, which can affect your comfort levels no matter where you go. A good heating and air conditioning system can deal with the humidity as well as the temperatures, leaving you enough moisture in the air to keep from drying out your skin without turning your home into a swamp. If you understand how humidity impacts heating, you’ll understand why this is so important.

As human beings, we’re very sensitive to humidity in the air. Excess moisture leaves the body through our skin in the form of sweat, an action that helps keep us cool. Higher humidity in the air hampers that process, meaning that sweat doesn’t evaporate off of our skin quickly enough to cool our body temperature. We stay warmer than we should, and we’re just not as comfortable as we might be. Ideally, we want a relative humidity level in our surroundings to be at about 45 percent.

In addition to their heating and cooling functions HVAC systems can reduce the humidity levels in your house. A heater warms the air which causes water particles to evaporate, lowering the overall humidity levels. That’s why it can sometimes feel excessively dry in your heated home during the winter months. Your heater has sucked all the moisture up. Dry air is just as bad as humid air, since it can make breathing problems worse and irritate your skin if left unaddressed. You can correct the issue by adjusting your heater and/or by using a humidifier to keep the air moist.

A qualified professional can help adjust your heater to meet your comfort levels, and help you with a humidifier if that’s what you need. In Fairfield, OH, heating issues can be treated by Bartels Heating & Cooling. We know how humidity impacts heating, and we can conduct installation and repairs to meet your needs. Call our team of professionals to set up a consultation today. You’ll be glad you did.

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3 Great Options for Quality Heating in Fairfield, OH

Monday, September 30th, 2013

With the numerous advances in comfort systems during the last half century, your options for heating in Fairfield, OH are more expansive than they once were. You no longer need to rely on a standard boiler or furnace when it’s time to install a new system. In this post, we’ll go over 3 options that have gained popularity with Ohio residents over the past decades. One of them might be the right alternative for heating your home this winter.

However, and this is important to know, not every system matches every home. It takes someone with years of HVAC training to gauge which heater fits the unique needs of a house. A bit of knowledge will help you narrow down your choices, but don’t make a final decision unless you have a professional opinion. At Bartels Heating & Cooling, we have NATE-certified technicians ready to give you the advice necessary to make the correct choice and we’ll perform the installation when you’re ready.

Heat pumps

A heater and air conditioner in one! A heat pump is like an AC in most ways—except it can change the direction of heat exchange so it extracts heat from the outside and moves it inside. Heat pumps sometimes need supplemental heat for very low temperatures.

Radiant heating

People have used the warmth radiated from heated objects for millennia: from a hot rock placed in a bed to the old fashioned radiator. But the new radiant heating systems use hydronic (and sometimes electric) power to warm pipes set into your floor to give you an even, efficient, and remarkably cozy heating performance. They also help with air quality since they don’t have to blow air through ducts that can become clogged with dust.

Geothermal systems

You can go green while still keeping warm! A geothermal heat pump extracts heat from the earth through coils buried near your house that carry a water or antifreeze solution. And, like a standard heat pump, the process can reverse to provide cooling. Geothermal systems are highly energy-efficient because they use little fuel to get the job done.

One, or maybe all three, of these options has probably got you excited about the potential benefits. Contact Bartels Heating & Cooling right away to talk over the possibilities. We can schedule an appointment to see how to get the heating in your Fairfield, OH home up to a new level of comfort.

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Proper Sizing and a Successful Fairfield, OH Furnace Installation

Monday, September 16th, 2013

In Ohio towns like Fairfield, furnace installation is a serious business. Your furnace will keep your home warm and cozy during the long winter months, and you want it to perform as efficiently as possible. That starts with the installation, which should be performed by a qualified specialist utilizing quality parts. But before installation can begin, you need to make sure you have the right furnace for the job. Proper sizing plays a vital role in a successful furnace installation operation.

Furnace efficiency is measured in BTU (British Thermal Units) per hour. Input BTU measures the amount of fuel the furnace consumes, while Output BTU measures the actual amount of heat generated. So if you have a furnace with a input BTU of 90,000 that burns at 90 percent efficiency, you will have an output BTU of  81,000. The heat generated needs to match the space and heating requirements of your home. A professional installer will measure the square footage, evaluate things like insulation and sunlight exposure, and calculate the Output BTU required to heat that area successfully.

It’s an important process because it ensures that your furnace is the most efficient it can be. Call it the Goldilocks dilemma: if the furnace is too small, it won’t heat your house properly. If it’s too large, it will cycle on and off rapidly, expending unnecessary energy and raising your bills (as well as inflicting needless wear and tear on the system). Neither state is one you want, and once the furnace is installed, it’s going to take a lot of time and money to remove it and install another one.  Installation should take place only after the specialist has properly sized the home and made his recommendations.

If you’re thinking about replacing your furnace, don’t hesitate to call upon the experts. Bartels Heating & Cooling offers professional furnace installation in Fairfield, Ohio –  call us today to schedule an estimate!

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Fairfield, OH Air Conditioning Repair Question: My Geothermal System Won’t Cool

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Geothermal systems use a series of pipes buried in the soil to transfer heat between the ground and your house. In the summertime, the system absorbs heat out from your building and discharges it in the soil. In the winter, the process is reversed, as the system absorbs heat from the ground in order to warm your home. In Fairfield, OH, air conditioning specialists like Bartel’s Heating & Cooling have geothermal system experts available to address problems when they arise. If your geothermal system won’t cool for some reason, it’s time to give them a call.

Problems with a geothermal system can stem from a number of sources. Closed-loop systems use a heat exchanger to transfer heat between the antifreeze that circulates underground and the refrigerant in the heat pump, which heat or cools the air that is circulated in your home. A leak of either component could affect the system’s ability to cool your house. A trained professional can recharge the refrigerant or add additional levels of antifreeze, as wells as identifying the source of the leak and sealing it up.

Open loop systems, on the other hand, often use water in the underground loops; if the water flow is disrupted or cut off by damaged components within the system itself, it will impact the system’s ability to generate cool air. Dirty coils and filters in the heat pump could interfere with cool air as well, disrupting the flow of air and possibly affecting the pressure elsewhere in the system. It may also be a problem with the thermostat itself, which usually needs to be set to cool the house in the summer and heat the house in the winter. If it hasn’t been set properly, it may not be circulating cool air like it should.

Regardless of the causes, a non-functioning geothermal system requires trained experts to properly diagnose and repair. Bartel’s Heating & Cooling offers comprehensive geothermal maintenance and repair services. Our professional staff can diagnose your problem quickly, and we pride ourselves on customer satisfaction.

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Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Indicate a Need for Air Conditioning Repair in Fairfield, OH?

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Your home’s air conditioning system circulates a ton of air throughout your entire home. Because of that, it should come as no surprise that your AC and your home’s indoor air quality are closely related. So what does the quality of your home’s air say about your air conditioner? Here at Bartels Heating and Cooling, we wanted to put together a quick explanation of the correlation between air conditioning and air quality. Call us if you need any kind of air conditioning repair in Fairfield, OH, and our technicians will be able to get your AC back up and working again quickly.

So what are the signs that your home’s air quality is suffering? Here are just a few of them:

  • Humidity issues – You can probably tell very easily if your home’s air is too dry or too humid. If you have humid air, you will likely notice a stuffy and muggy feeling in your home. If your home’s air is too dry, you may feel itchy because of dry skin; you may also experience more nose bleeds or dry, scratchy throat. If your home is having problems with humidity, particularly if your home gets humid this summer, it could be a sign that your air conditioning system isn’t working well. Your AC will naturally dehumidify the air in your home be extracting moisture out of it in the form of condensation. If your air conditioner has low refrigerant, a clogged air filter, frozen coils or a broken compressor, it might not be able to properly cool your air or dehumidify it.
  • Allergies – If you or someone in your families suffers from allergies, you might start to notice that they’re sneezing more often or that their eyes are itchy and red. Allergies can be triggered by dust and other indoor air pollutants in your home. If you notice excess dust or strange odors coming from your home AC system, it could meant that you need duct repair. Holes or leaks in your ducts can allow outside contaminants to get into your home’s air supply. Problems with your condensate drain can also cause some allergens to form on the AC unit itself.

Maintaining your air conditioning system, including occasional duct cleaning, can help keep the air in your home clean. If you need Fairfield, OH that you need, make sure that you call the specialists at Bartels Heating & Cooling.

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Using Your Air Conditioning in Fairfield, OH More Efficiently

Monday, July 15th, 2013

During the heat and humidity of the summer months, you need to make sure that your cooling system works effectively. Its cooling output needs to satisfy your cooling demands. But another important consideration to keep in mind is that it also needs to cool efficiently. Running your AC is probably one of the chief expenses during the summer months, and with electrical energy costs ever on the rise, energy efficiency should always be a top priority. In today’s post, we’d like to look at some ways you can use your air conditioning more efficiently.

  • Programmable thermostat: One of the most cost-effective improvements you can make to your existing AC is to ensure that you have a programmable, digital thermostat installed in your home. The thermostat is your primary user interface, and as such, it needs to be up to date. Older, conventional thermostats  are only “on” or “off”, whereas programmable thermostat allow you to automatically adjust the temperature depending on the time of say and other factors.
  • Zone control system: A zone control system is also a highly effective way of improving your energy efficiency, though it’s a little more involved than just a simple thermostat swap. It involves the installation of electronically controlled dampers at strategic points in your ductwork that divide your home into separately controlled zones. Each zone has its own thermostat so that you can minimize the cooling in one area of your home and prioritize it in others. 
  • Keep your air filter clean: Make sure that your air filter is clean at all times. This relatively inexpensive but crucial part must be kept free of dirt, dust, and other debris if you want excellent cooling performance as well as energy efficiency. When it becomes clogged with debris, then it blocks airflow and makes your system work harder for the same amount of cooling.

Call the Fairfield, OH air conditioning technicians at Bartels Heating & Cooling today to hear about what we can do for your home comfort.

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Fairfield, OH Air Conditioning Tip: Why You Shouldn’t Put Off Repair Services

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

It’s the case for most things in life that if you put off dealing with problems that they will only get worse. Your air conditioning system is no exception. It is usually best to call for professional air conditioning repair in Fairfield, OH as soon as you suspect that you’re having any AC problems. Call the friendly experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling today to talk with us about any services that you need. Here is a quick explanation of why you should never put off necessary air conditioning repair services.

  • Comfort – If your air conditioning system isn’t working well, it likely means that your hose isn’t as comfortable as it should be. Whether your air conditioner isn’t producing enough cooling or if it is making a strange noise, call early so that your house can return to normal.
  • Avoid larger issues – If your AC unit is having problems, you might be able to keep those problems from developing into even more complex issues by calling for repair as soon as you notice something is wrong.
  • Avoid long-term damage – Often, your air conditioning system can suffer severe damage from very small issues. Even something as seemingly insignificant as an air filter can actually cause tremendous damage if it is allowed to persist. Not only cause these types of problems cause immediate repairs, but they could also impact the life expectancy of your air conditioning system.

One of the best ways to avoid repairs is to get your system regularly maintained by a professional. During regular maintenance visits, your technician will thoroughly inspect, clean and repair every component of your system. This will allow them to find any small problems that could be developing and fix them early. Not only could this potentially help you avoid repairs, but it could also increase the efficiency of your system and extend the life of your equipment.

If you need air conditioning repair in Fairfield, OH, make sure that you call Bartels Heating & Cooling.

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