Aurora Plumbing Company Blog: Archive for January, 2015

How Does Incorrect Duct Size Affect Your Heating?

Friday, January 30th, 2015

Ducts are a vitally important, and all-to-rarely considered, part of your forced air heating system. Though they are naturally unobtrusive and often quiet, ducts require just as much consideration during installation as any other part of your heating system. If the ducts are improperly sized during installation, it can have an enormous negative impact on your heating system’s ability to operate. Let’s examine the consequences of installing ducts that are either too large or too small.

Oversized Ducts

Each forced air heating system is equipped with an air handler, which is designed to move a certain volume of air a set distance. This volume changes depending on the size of the system. The different options for duct sizing are meant to match the different sizes of heating systems and their air handlers, so that the proper amount of air is circulated around the house.

By choosing ducts that are too large, you are providing a lot more area for the air handler to cover. As the system itself is not rated to move air that distance, much less air will actually make it into the various rooms that need to be heated. This leads to a dramatic loss in heat output for the heating system, which is a waste of money for you.

Undersized Ducts

Ducts that are too small for your heating system will result in an increase in static pressure. There are two consequences of this. The first is that your ducts will be much noisier than they should be. This should be easy to detect, as the noise is often so loud as to be extremely distracting. The second issue is that your system will have to work much, much harder to heat your home. The system will have to run longer and longer, to adequately heat your home, which will waste more and more money. Undersized ducts will also shorten your heater’s lifespan, as it won’t be getting enough air circulating through it to work properly.

If you have questions about duct sizing, call APC Plumbing & Heating. We provide quality heating services in the Denver area.

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What Are Some Common Radiant Heating Problems?

Friday, January 23rd, 2015

Radiant heating systems are a great option for homeowners looking for a more efficient and powerful home heating system. Though they tend to be much more sturdy and reliable than forced air systems, radiant heating systems are just as susceptible to problems as any other heater. Their specific issues tend to be a bit different than other heating systems, however. Let’s take a look at the common problems that affect radiant heating systems.

Leaks

Possibly the most dreaded issue that can affect any hydronic heating system, leaks can drastically decrease the radiant system’s efficiency and cause quite a bit of damage besides. Leaks can happen for any number of reasons, whether because of a faulty pipe or corrosion. The big issue with radiant systems is that the pipes involved are all located behind walls or under the floor. It is difficult to detect leaks in a radiant system, but if you notice water coming up from your floor it’s a pretty good indication that you have one.

Because of their location, leaks in radiant systems can be difficult to get to and fix. In that regard, you’ll just have to trust your professional technician to find the best possible way to repair the leak before it can do too much damage.

Uneven or No Heat

Problems with heat distribution are just as common with other heating systems as with radiant heating. The unique problem with radiant systems is how the flow of regular heat is restricted or cut off. Most often, this is actually due to one or more air bubbles being present in the pipe network, which prevents the water from flowing freely. The way to solve this is to flush all the air out of the system, which you’ll need to have a professional do for you. After that, the issue should be solved. If the problem persists, however, the problem may actually be located in the central boiler.

If you’d like to know more about problems that your radiant heating system may experience, call APC Plumbing & Heating. We provide quality heating repair throughout the Denver area.

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Signs of a Cracked Heat Exchanger

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

Your furnace has a number of parts that allow it to operate, but there are three key components that make up most of the operation: the burner, the blower and the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger works with the burner to generate the heat that is blown into your home, but the heat exchanger also separates the toxic byproducts of combustion and vents them out through your system’s flue. When your heat exchanger develops a problem it can be a potentially dangerous situation as toxic fumes and gases can escape. It isn’t possible to determine if a problem has developed with your heat exchanger visually as the component resides inside your furnace’s cabinet and is at the heart of the system. However, there are some signs that your furnace will give when a heat exchanger has developed a problem, and knowing these signs can go a long way toward knowing when to call for heating repair for your home in Aurora.

  • Flame appearance – a healthy, viable flame in your furnace should burn blue and burn steadily. A flame that is yellow, orange, leans or dances around is an indication that there may be a crack in the heat exchanger, so it’s important to call for help right away.
  • Excess soot – a furnace that is working properly will burn cleanly, leaving very little soot. If you start to see considerable soot in and around your furnace’s cabinet, this is an indication that the unit is not burning cleanly, which can be a result of a cracked heat exchanger.
  • Strong odor – sometimes a faulty heat exchanger can create an odor that smells like formaldehyde. This is not carbon monoxide, as carbon monoxide does not have a smell, but this odor can cause extreme headaches.
  • Excess corrosion – furnaces do not use water for any aspect of heating, so if you are seeing excess corrosion and rust on your unit, it’s important to have a professional check it to make sure components like the heat exchanger have not also become rusty and corroded.

Cracks in the heat exchanger are a serious problem and require the work of a professional as a cracked heat exchanger must be replaced. If you suspect you may be experiencing a problem with your heat exchanger, call APC Plumbing & Heating today and schedule an appointment for heating repair in Aurora.

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Can a Ductless System Heat Enough?

Monday, January 5th, 2015

When using heat pump technology, as you will with a ductless heating system, there can be some concern that the heat pump may not be enough to sufficiently heat your home during very cold weather. This has to do with the way a heat pump works, which we’ll explain more about below. Heat pumps are great systems no matter what season you need them, and when it comes to heating, you can always supplement a heat pump with a back-up heating system. The experts at APC Plumbing & Heating have been helping Denver residents with their heating needs since 1984 and we can help you, too. Have concerns about using a heat pump during winter? Let’s take a look at how they work.

How Heat Pumps Works

Heat pumps work by transferring heat from one location to another. They do this with the help of refrigerant. During the winter months, heat pumps absorb heat from the surrounding air, concentrate it, then disperse it to your living spaces; heat pumps can use ducted or ductless systems to do this. The concern during the winter months come when the air temperature drops below 32 degrees for an extended period of time. This is because the available heat in the air decreases, and can force your heat pump to work harder to achieve the heating you need. We certainly see our fair share of cold temperatures during the winter, so one of the best ways to maintain your indoor heat is to augment your heat pump with a back-up heating system.

Working With a Back-Up Heating System

When you use a back-up heating system with your heat pump, the heat pump remains your main source of heating, but can switch to a back-up source of heating, such as a gas furnace, during the colder days of winter. This allows you to have the benefits of a heat pump system while ensuring that you have the heat you want on the coldest days.

A heat pump can be sufficient for your heating but if you have concerns, speak to your APC Plumbing & Heating expert about the installation of a back-up heating system. We offer professional heating services throughout Denver.

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