Bartels Heating & Cooling Blog: Archive for September, 2014

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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How Does Duct Cleaning Help Your Heating and Air Conditioning System?

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Fall is a great time to clean and maintain your heating and air conditioning systems, including your ductwork. Ductwork can often be overlooked, mostly because it isn’t as visible as the other parts of your system. But like the other parts of your HVAC system, your ductwork can become dirty, and the best way to remove dirt and dust build-up is with a professional duct cleaning service in Fairfield, OH. Bartel’s Heating & Cooling has been servicing heating and cooling clients since 1973, and we have the trained technicians to help you with all your ductwork needs.

What Happens During a Professional Duct Cleaning?

Here is a general overview of what to expect during a professional duct cleaning appointment:

  • The technician will connect a vacuum hose to your air duct system via access ports. Each outlet is sealed off to ensure no contamination occurs during the cleaning.
  • The technician will remove each grill and thoroughly clean it. He/she may also air-blast the first few feet of the duct to clean the entrance area.
  • The technician then inserts a tool called an air sweep, which is fastened to a high pressure air hose, and sends it down the entire length of distribution ducts. The air sweep breaks loose sticking contaminants like dirt, dust, grime, fungus, and other material that may be inside the ducts. This material is then sucked along the duct to the trunk lines.
  • The technician will replace the grills and clean around them with a HEPA vacuum cleaner, ensuring all supply and return lines have been completed cleaned.
  • The trunk lines (lines which carry the air between the furnace and the lateral ducts) are swept and brushed clean in the same manner as above.
  • The technician will clean the fan, blower compartment, plenum, AC coil, return air compartment and the air handling side of the furnace with an air pressure tool and a vacuum.
  • The technician will check the entire system again to ensure all vent work has been cleaned.
  • The technician will complete a thorough clean-up of the entire work area.

How Does Duct Cleaning Help Your HVAC System?

  • Better energy efficiency – if the build-up in your ductwork was substantial, it may have reduced air flow; this can cause your HVAC system to use more energy as it struggles to achieve the temperature you’ve set. Removing this build-up helps the system to operate normally again.
  • Less stress for your air conditioner – a dirty system is a system under stress; when an HVAC system operates under stressful conditions for long periods of time, it can age the system prematurely. Keeping your ductwork clean helps reduce this effect.

It’s recommended that your ductwork is cleaned every 3-5 years. How long has it been since you’ve had a duct cleaning in Fairfield, OH? If it’s been longer than this, call Bartel’s Heating & Cooling today and schedule an appointment.

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Ways to Tell You Need to Schedule Water Heater Repair

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Your water heater helps you accomplish many of the most important small tasks you need to complete around the home, including washing the dishes, doing a load of laundry, and showering. So when your water heater stops working entirely, you know to call a technician for immediate repairs. But what if your unit hasn’t failed completely? How can you tell that you need to call a specialist for water heater repair?

In general, when there’s a problem with your water heater, you need to call for repairs as soon as possible to ensure your system can continue to run smoothly and efficiently. Here are some of the reasons you’ll need to call a water heater specialist.

  • Rusty Discoloration: If your water turns a reddish-brown color whenever you turn on the hot water tap, you may have a serious water heater problem. If the tank is rusty, it’s at risk of corroding, and a rusted-through tank is usually beyond repair. Rust in the tank is often a sign that you need a new unit, but this isn’t necessarily the source of the problem. A rusty anode rod, the component that’s meant to attract elements that may cause the unit to rust, will only require an inexpensive parts replacement.
  • Sounds: While noises may be a sign of other problems, one common reason for sounds inside of your unit is sediment. If sediment builds up inside of your tank, it may bang against the sides. A water heater repair technician can drain sediment from the tank and check for any damages.
  • Hot Water Runs Out Quickly: If you’ve owned your unit for a fairly long time, you know how long it usually takes for your water heater to run out of hot water. If your hot water runs out much faster than it once did, you may have a pipe that has moved out of place, a problem with the heating element, or thermostat issues.

If you have other questions about your water heater in Hamilton, OH, call the experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling today!

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The Fashion of Wearing White and Labor Day

Monday, September 1st, 2014

You may have heard about the fashion faux pas of wearing white after Labor Day. In the present, this tradition is usually treated as old fashioned and a joke. Few people will criticize you for wearing white articles of clothing after the first Monday in September, or even take notice of it except to wonder why it was ever a major concern at all.

Where did this tradition of white clothing going out of fashion after Labor Day come from, and why did it fade away like colorful fabric washed in a hot load in the washing machine?

In general, white makes sense for the heat of summer. Light-colored clothing reflects away the radiant heat of the sun, instead of absorbing it the way dark colors do, so for thousands of years of human history people have preferred to wear white clothing during the hotter months.

However, the idea of white as strictly fashionable during the summer season only emerged in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries—the time when the very concept of “fashion” began to spread across the Western Hemisphere.

It was only the highest level of post-Civil War society in the U.S. that strict and often bizarre rules for fashion controlled whether someone was in with the “in” crowd. Compared to our ideas of what’s fashionable today, the Czars of Style in the 1880s were true despots. Things as trivial as sleeve length could determine whether a woman in high society—no matter her level of wealth—was fashionable or a pariah.

Wearing white during the only summer, when it was common for weddings and outdoor parties, was only of these restrictive society rules. When the U.S. government made Labor Day a federal holiday in 1894, the Fashion Czars gained a definite cut-off point for when wearing white was no longer “acceptable” in the upper echelons of wealthy society.

For many decades, this rule only applied to a small number of millionaire socialites in a few big cities, but in the 1950s it reached general fashion magazines that were read around the country and started to affect more people.

But time eventually broke apart this odd rule, and during the 1970s fashion became more individual. Some fashion legends, like Coco Chanel, also purposely rejected the restriction and wore white throughout the year. Today, the “no white after Labor Day rule” is little more than an amusing gag to tease friends, and almost nobody takes it seriously.

Whatever you choose to wear after Labor Day (and if it’s white, we won’t tease!), everyone here at Bartels Heating & Cooling hopes you have a happy end of the summer and great plans for the fall!

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