Bartels Heating & Cooling Blog : Posts Tagged ‘West Chester’

3 Ways to Prevent Air Conditioning Failure

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

It’s difficult to think about when the outside air is still chilly, but warmer weather will soon be here, and your air conditioning system will be running regularly throughout the day before too long. It can be an alarming situation if your air conditioner breaks down in the middle of a hot summer day, which is why we recommend taking preventive steps now to avoid this. Follow these tips for successful air conditioning operation throughout the warmer months, and call one of our experts now for professional maintenance services in West Chester.

  • Pay attention to problems – If your air conditioning system is struggling, you may be able to tell early on if you know what signs to look for. Noisy operation and slow cooling times indicates trouble. If your system has trouble starting up or staying on, it could do some damage to the compressor. Call for repairs early on to prevent parts from deteriorating any further.
  • Change your filter regularly – The filter of your air conditioning system is designed for two purposes. First, it stops your fan from sucking in large debris that could damage the air conditioning unit. Second, it filters contaminants out of the air so that your family does not breathe these in. If you allow this filter to become clogged, though, air cannot successfully pass through and into the system, which may result in motor trouble or frozen coils, among other problems that could result in system failure.
  • Keep your AC professionally maintained – Changing the air filter regularly is an important part of maintaining your unit, but one of the best things you can do for your system is to schedule regular maintenance visits from a professional. Professional maintenance involves checking refrigerant levels, testing the voltage, tightening electrical components, cleaning the coils, oiling the motors, and many other tasks that help to extend the life of your system. For the most part, these tasks require an expert with the proper tools for the job and the experience necessary to recognize trouble quickly.

Call the cooling experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling for air conditioning maintenance, repairs, and any additional services in West Chester and the surrounding areas.

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How Efficient Is a Geothermal Heat Pump?

Friday, March 20th, 2015

One of the latest trends in energy efficient heating and cooling is the use of geothermal energy. Geothermal heat pumps draw from the thermal energy in the earth to transfer heat to the air in your home for heating, and to move heat back to the earth in the summer. If you decide you want a new geothermal heat pump for your home in West Chester, OH, contact the friendly professionals at Bartels Heating & Cooling. If you’re still concerned about whether geothermal energy is worth the investment, read on.

Many people wonder how much money they will save over time. Of course, we cannot give a definitive answer, as this depends on usage, the size of your household, and a number of other factors, including the cost of electricity in your area. Geothermal heat pumps do still use some amount of electricity in order to move around the air, but this is minimal when compared to the traditional air-source split system air conditioners.

If you had an older conventional split-system AC, then you will likely notice energy savings right away. When you dig deep enough into the ground, the earth remains at a constant temperature, usually around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This means they may be more effective in cooler weather than heat pumps which pull thermal energy from the air. Water or a water-refrigerant blend moves through an underground loop system to absorb this energy, which is then transferred to the refrigerant in your heat pump.

Furthermore, this system uses far fewer of the earth’s natural resources, which makes it a great system for those who are at all environmentally conscious. The initial cost maybe high, but over a number of years, the savings should compensate for the additional cost. But all of this is only true if you choose a professional for installation. Professional sizing and installation is a vital step in ensuring efficiency and performance. If the unit is over- or undersized, you may use up more energy than you need.

Call the friendly experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling to learn how you can get geothermal heating and cooling in West Chester, OH.

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What to Check before Calling for Furnace Repair

Monday, February 16th, 2015

When your furnace stops working or begins to malfunction, your first instinct is probably to call an HVAC technician to examine your system. That’s a good habit to develop, but before you call for professional help there are a few things you should check first. It is possible that your furnace malfunction is actually very minor, and something you can fix yourself. Even though you will likely need to call a professional anyway, examining certain parts of your system beforehand can help isolate and identify the problem. Let’s take a look at what you should check before calling for furnace repair.

The Thermostat

The core of any central heating system is the thermostat. It is the brain of your furnace system, which will not act without an order from the thermostat. As such, a malfunctioning thermostat can pretty effectively cripple your entire furnace. If your furnace stops working, you should always check your thermostat before doing anything else. Examine the display on the thermostat and make sure that all the information and settings are correct. An incorrect display is a sign that something is wrong with your thermostat.

The Air Filter

The air filter is responsible for protecting your furnace from dust and debris that blows in from the ducts. Though it does this job well, the filter has no way to rid itself of any particles that it collects. If not cleaned or changed out every 1-3 months, the air filter can become clogged. This restricts the air flow through the system, trapping heat inside the furnace and causing it to overheat. When this happens, it trips a device called the “limit switch,” which shuts the furnace down as a safety measure. If your furnace suddenly shuts down and won’t restart, it is possible that it overheated due to a dirty air filter. If you replace your dirty air filter, that might be all that is needed to solve the problem.

If your furnace is experiencing any sort of issue, call Bartels Heating & Cooling to make an appointment today. We provide professional furnace repair service throughout the West Chester area.

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Ways to Determine That Your House Needs Duct Cleaning

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

A disturbing percentage of homeowners with forced air systems are completely unaware that their ducts need to be cleaned on a semi-regular basis. If you’re asking this question, then you probably already know that your ducts need to be cleaned, but are unsure of when to act on that knowledge. There are a few ways to determine that your house needs duct cleaning. Let’s examine some of those ways together.

You Haven’t Had Your Ducts Cleaned Before

If you have just recently become aware of the need for duct cleaning, but you haven’t had it done yet, get it done as soon as possible. Some pretty frightening things have likely built up in your ducts over the years that they haven’t been cleaned, and you’ll want to get rid of those things as quickly as possible. There’s no point in waiting until a preset time; ducts have no optimal time of year for cleaning, like heating systems do. Just get it done as soon as you can to start reaping the benefits of duct cleaning. Ducts should be cleaned every 1-3 years after the first time.

Frequent Allergy Attacks and/or Illnesses

The primary reason that duct cleaning is necessary is that all the microscopic contaminants that circulate through the air often find a home and a means of transportation in the ducts. Things like dust, pollen, viruses, bacteria, insect dander, and mold are all common pollutants that can be found in the common home’s air ducts. These pollutants are circulated throughout the house whenever the air conditioning or heating is turned on, infecting the occupants of the house in the process. If you are an allergy sufferer, or if you find that you get sick often throughout the year, then you could definitely reap the benefits of having your ducts cleaned out. That’s not to say that duct cleaning will solve all of your health problems, but it can remove a lot of the organisms that contribute to things like the common cold and the flu.

If you haven’t had your ducts cleaned in a while, call Bartels Heating & Cooling to schedule an appointment today. We provide professional duct cleaning services throughout West Chester.

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Why Consider a Dual Fuel Hybrid Heat Pump Installation

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014

There can be a lot of misinformation out there when it comes to any kind of home product or whole-home system. In specific to heat pumps, a common piece of misinformation is that a heat pump won’t work during the winter; this isn’t true. It is true that there can concerns about a heat pump working as it should during very cold weather – those days that are under 32 degrees – but it isn’t true that a heat pump can’t work at all. Additionally, with a hybrid heating system, you can avoid any heating capability issues with your heat pump and very cold weather. First, let’s take a look at why there’s concern around heat pumps during the winter.

It’s Chilly Out There

Air-source heat pumps provide heating by absorbing the available heat in the air, concentrating it and blowing the warm air into your home. As the temperature outside falls, the available heat in the air decreases; this can force your heat pump to work harder, making it less energy efficient and more challenged to meet your heating needs. A great solution to this is the hybrid heating system.

What Is a Hybrid Heating System?

With a hybrid heating system, you get the best of both worlds: a heat pump as the main source of heating (and cooling) your home with a back-up gas furnace. This allows you to have a secondary system to heat your home when the outside air temperature falls below 32 degrees.

How Does a Hybrid System Work?

With a hybrid system, your heat pump is furnished with an outdoor temperature sensor that works in conjunction with a dual-fuel thermostat. A set-point temperature is programmed into the sensor that tells your heating system when to switch from the heat pump to the gas furnace for heating; typically this temperature is a few degrees above the freezing mark. When the outside temperature reaches the set-point temperature, the heating system automatically switches from using the heat pump to heat your home to the back-up gas furnace. There is also a set-point temperature at which the gas furnace will switch back to the heat pump.

Benefits of a Hybrid System

With a hybrid system, you get the benefit of using a heat pump as your main source of heating and cooling. This gives you great energy efficiency, the longer lifespan of a heat pump and the gentle heating and cooling of a heat pump. The back-up heating of the system means you’ll never be cold, even on the chilliest of days.

For quality heating installation of a hybrid heating system in your West Chester home, call Bartels Heating & Cooling today to schedule a service appointment!

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Some Examples of Boiler Repair Needs

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

Boilers are durable, reliable and energy efficient, which are some of the reasons why they are still popular heating systems today. But like any other mechanical system, your boiler will need repair at some point. Heating repairs should always be left to trained professionals, especially with combustion systems. Bartels Heating & Cooling has been repairing heating systems since 1973, so if you need heating repair, call us today.

Types of Boiler Repairs

Here are some of the more common boiler repairs our technicians see:

  • Leaking – boilers use water to heat your home, so developing a leak isn’t unusual. What is important is to repair any leaks right away. Leaks imbalance the pressure in your system that the boiler needs to operate correctly. As a result, you may experience heat loss in that particular area. Leaks can also lead to the development of rust and create water damage, so the sooner you can have a leak repaired, the better for you and your system.
  • Circulator pump problems – the way the hot water from your boiler is pushed through your system is via circulator pumps. When something is wrong with a pump, the water can’t get to the outlet to release heat. Circulator pumps can develop broken seals that cause leaks; dirt can become lodged in the pump, reducing its ability to operate; and other times the pump may be rusted and/or corroded and require replacement.
  • Combustion issues – whether your boiler uses gas or oil, problems with ignition and operation can develop. For instance, dust and dirt can cover the pilot nozzle, causing the nozzle to have a reduced flame or no flame at all. You may develop a broken thermocouple or the burner may develop a crack. Whenever there’s a combustion problem, it’s imperative to have the problem fixed immediately as issues of safety can develop.

Quality boiler repair service in West Chester requires the expertise of a professional. If you are experiencing problems with your boiler, call Bartels Heating & Cooling to day and schedule an appointment with one of our heating repair specialists.

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What to Do If Your Heat Pump Won’t Switch to Heating Mode

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

We are at the time of year when we switch our heat pump systems from cooling to heating – but what if yours won’t switch? There are a few reasons why a heat pump won’t switch modes, but the first thing to remember is not to panic. Bartels Heating & Cooling has the trained technicians to help you with any heat pump issues you may experience, so if you are in need of a heating repair service in West Chester, call us today!

Reasons Your Heat Pump Won’t Switch Modes

Thermostat Problems

Your thermostat is the instrument that cues your heat pump to change modes. Thermostats can malfunction just like any other component, and can require repair. Sometimes the instrumentation inside the thermostat can become dusty and dirty, which can affect how it operates. The wires that connect the thermostat to your system can fray and corrode, cutting off needed electrical flow. Sometimes it can be as simple as an issue of programming. The best way to manage a problem with your thermostat is to call a technician to review and inspect yours for any existing problems.

Refrigerant Leak

Your heat pump needs an exact amount of refrigerant to operate correctly, whether or not the system is cooling or heating your home. During the winter, the refrigerant absorbs the heat in the surrounding air so that your system can heat your home. If there is a refrigerant leak somewhere in your system, the heat pump can’t operate as it should, and the result may be lukewarm air blowing into your living spaces. Refrigerant leaks can be hard to find, and handling refrigerant requires certification, so if you suspect you have a refrigerant leak in your system, call for a technician.

Reversing Valve

The reversing valve in your heat pump is what allows the device to switch from cooling mode to heating mode. The reversing valve can get stuck in a certain position, whether it be a specific mode or in between modes. If the reason for the immobility is traced to the solenoid, the solenoid can be repaired; if the reason for the valve being stuck is attributed to a refrigerant leak or other issue, the valve will need to be replaced.

If your heat pump isn’t changing modes, don’t wait to call for heating repair in West Chester – call Bartels Heating & Cooling today!

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How to Tell a Furnace is Your Best Choice for Heating

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

With all the hype around more modern systems like heat pumps and radiant heating, it’s easy to overlook the furnace as a viable heating option. There is a good reason that the furnace remains the most popular heating choice in America, however. Let’s highlight the reasons why a furnace might be the best choice for your home.

Convenience

The number one reason to choose a furnace as a heating system is that it is the most convenient to install and maintain. Natural gas, the most common furnace fuel source, is readily available in most areas of the country. Because of the popularity of furnaces, it is easy to find an HVAC company that is well versed in installing them. Maintenance is also much easier, as replacement parts will be easy to find.

Flexibility

Furnaces come in a wide variety of types and sizes, making it more likely that you will find one that perfectly suits your home. Keep in mind the way furnaces interface with ductwork, as well. Many homes are outfitted with ductwork for central air conditioning. Oftentimes, furnaces can use this same ductwork without problems. Radiant heating, on the other hand, requires that an entire network of pipes be installed that only that system can use.

Furnaces also tend to heat up faster than other systems, like boilers. Water is a better conductor of thermal energy than air is, but it also takes longer to absorb that energy. A furnace can reach target temperature and begin actually warming the house well before the boiler even begins to approach the right temperature.

Like any system, a furnace has its drawbacks. It isn’t the most energy efficient heating system available, which may result in slightly higher heating bills than if you used other systems. The reduced cost of installation and repairs can often compensate for those factors, however.

If you would like to install a new furnace in your home, call Bartels Heating & Cooling. Our HVAC experts install furnaces throughout West Chester. We’d be happy to help you pick the best furnace for your home. Call us today!

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Why a Boiler Might Be the Best Choice for Your Winter Heating

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

Homeowners have a number of choices when it comes to home heating. In fact, there are so many choices, it may be hard to determine which system will work best for you and your home. One system you may want to consider is a boiler. Boilers have been around for a long time, and today’s models are very energy efficient. You also get a choice in fuel type for boilers, including oil, gas and solid fuel, such as wood or wood pellets. If it’s time for a new boiler installation in West Chester, call the people who can help you from start to finish: Bartels Heating & Cooling.

Some Benefits of Boiler Heating

Here are some benefits to consider when looking at installing a new boiler in your home:

  • Even heating – boilers distribute heat radiantly through radiators, baseboard heaters and radiant floor heating. This helps disperse the heat evenly as compared to a forced-air system in which hot air is blown.
  • No dust – boilers are closed systems and do not use air to distribute the heat. As such, they don’t disperse dust particles the way a forced-air system can.
  • Easy to zone – boilers use a system of pipes to deliver the hot water or steam to the distribution points; it is easy to create heating zones with piping systems.
  • Quiet operation – the only time you’ll hear a boiler running is during the short time it takes to heat the water in the system. Otherwise, the distribution is quiet.

Condensing vs. Non-Condensing

As we mentioned above, different fuel types can be used to operate a boiler. Many times, boilers are classified by fuel type, but there are also two other considerations when it comes to boilers: condensing and non-condensing.

Condensing boilers reuse the heat that would normally exit the system through your system’s flue to reheat the water via a secondary heat exchanger that is part of the system. Reusing this latent heat energy helps make a condensing boiler very energy efficient. Conversely, a non-condensing boiler does not make use of this latent heat, and may be less efficient.

Boilers can be great choices for your home heating, but the best way to assess what system will work best is to consult with a trained specialist. If you are considering the installation of a new boiler in West Chester, call Bartels Heating & Cooling today and schedule an appointment with one of our installation experts.

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Here’s How Professionals Clean Your Ductwork

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

Professional duct cleaning employs the use of tools that are most likely not readily available to the average person. Moreover, ducts can be tricky to clean; it can be difficult to see the entire duct without the help of visual aid tools, and removing certain contaminants, like mold, can be challenging. These are just a couple of reasons why it’s best to call professionally-trained experts, like the ones at Bartel’s Heating & Cooling, for your duct cleaning service in West Chester.

Equipment Used by Professionals

Following is an overview of the kinds of equipment a technician can bring to a scheduled duct cleaning:

Access Tools

Technicians need access tools to create entry points in the HVAC system in order to properly inspect and clean your system. Access points can range from small holes for optical imaging to entry panels large enough to accommodate bulkier equipment.

Inspection Tools

These tools help the technician assess the scope of cleaning necessary for your ductwork. Tools may include hand-held mirrors, a periscope, closed circuit TV camera or a regular camera.

Hand-Held Cleaning Tools

Hand-held tools can include pneumatic devices that help remove stuck-on debris, as well as power and manual brushes.

Vacuum Collection Devices

Vacuum collection devices are used to collect the dirt and debris from your ductwork without spreading contaminants. The collection device does this by creating negative pressure in the ductwork. There are two main types of collection devices: those mounted on trucks and those that are portable.

Hand-Held HEPA Vacuums

HEPA vacuums are used to help remove debris from small or hard-to-reach places, and the HEPA filter inside the vacuum helps reduce the chances of contamination.

How It Works

The technician will access your ductwork by existing access points as well as any he/she may have to create. Your ductwork will get a thorough inspection, and then the cleaning will begin. Typically, a technician will start the cleaning with the truck-mounted vacuum to remove as much dust and debris as possible, and then focus on the more difficult spots. Once he/she has finished cleaning, your ductwork will be inspected again to ensure that the system was completely cleaned. Upon conclusion of the cleaning, the system will be re-closed and the workspace cleaned up.

A professional duct cleaning can improve your energy efficiency, comfort level and indoor air quality. If it’s been more than 5 years since you’ve had a duct cleaning, or you’ve moved into a new home with ductwork, call Bartel’s Heating and Cooling today and schedule a duct cleaning for your West Chester property.

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