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Air Conditioner

How to Prepare Your Air Conditioner for the Summer

As summer approaches, the last thing you want is for your central air conditioner to fail during those first sweltering days. Preparing your air conditioning system for summer is essential to ensure your home stays cool and comfortable as temperatures rise.

At Air Specialities, we understand that the best summer days are those when you can slip into a relaxing air-conditioned home after enjoying some fun in the sun. Since 1952, we’ve been keeping it cool for both residential and commercial HVAC customers throughout West Haven, CT, and the surrounding service area. Our decades of experience mean we know the ins and outs of every AC system, from the oldest models that have been part of homes for generations to the sleek new units dotting commercial landscapes. 

Let’s dive into how you can get your AC unit ready for the heat so you can chill out all season long. 

Breeze Through the AC Basics

An air conditioner is a system designed to cool your home or office, making those hot days more comfortable. At the heart of this system are the outdoor compressor and condenser units, which are crucial for the air cooling process. The compressor pumps a substance called coolant through the coolant lines, moving it between the indoor and outdoor units. 

As the coolant flows into the indoor evaporator coils, it absorbs heat from the indoor air, effectively lowering the temperature. The air handler then pushes the cool air through the air filter, which cleans it by removing particles and allergens. This filtered, cool air then circulates throughout your space. 

Meanwhile, the absorbed heat is transferred back outside through the condenser coils and released outdoors. This cycle repeats to keep your space at a comfortable temperature.

Step-by-Step Guide to Preparing Your Air Conditioner

1. Start with a Safety Check

Always begin by turning off the power to your HVAC system at the circuit breaker. This protects you as you perform maintenance checks and clean various components.

2. Replace or Clean the Air Filter 

One of the simplest yet most effective ways to boost your air conditioner’s performance is to clean or replace the air filter. A clogged or dirty filter restricts airflow, forcing your system to work harder. Where does that leave you? With increased energy bills and possibly a premature replacement. Check your filter monthly and swap it out or clean it as needed.

3. Clean the Outdoor Unit 

Over time, your outdoor unit might collect debris, such as leaves, dirt, and grass clippings, which can impede airflow. Gently clean the fan blades and condenser coils with a garden hose, and make sure the area around the unit is clear of vegetation and clutter for at least two feet.

4. Check for Proper Airflow 

Make sure that the vents throughout your home are open and unobstructed. This includes checking that furniture, rugs, or drapes are not blocking air supply vents, as restricted airflow can cause the system to work inefficiently.

5. Test the System 

After you’ve completed the maintenance checks and cleaning, turn the power back on. Test the system by setting the thermostat to cool and lowering the temperature to see how the AC responds. Listen for unusual noises and monitor for any distinctive smells. It might be time to call in a professional if anything seems out of the ordinary.

When Your Air Conditioner Unit Demands Professional Attention

While regular maintenance can be handled on your own to a certain extent, some signs indicate the need for a professional touch. 

  • The air conditioning unit is making unusual noises, such as grinding or squealing.
  • You notice an unexpected increase in your energy bills.
  • There is weak airflow from the vents.
  • Warm air is blowing out of your AC unit.
  • Moisture or leakage around the system, particularly around the indoor unit, points to refrigerant leaks or a blocked drain tube. 

These are signs of underlying issues that need to be fixed as soon as possible if you want to be cool through the summer. Contacting an HVAC technician from Air Specialties is crucial for these complex issues!

Call Now to Ensure Your System’s Efficiency All Summer Long!

Get your AC tuned up now with Air Specialties. Our awesome techs will check your whole system, guaranteeing everything runs smoothly. That means cool air all summer long, with no worries. A little prep now saves you a sweaty mess later! Got some more burning questions? Contact us today for more temperature tips and tricks or to schedule heating and cooling services in West Haven County, CT!

Categories
Heating

Why Do I Smell Gas When My Furnace Kicks On?

Smelling gas when your furnace kicks on can be a disconcerting experience. As a homeowner, you should know that the smell of gas inside your home should never be ignored as it can indicate a potentially dangerous situation. Keep reading to find out why you might smell gas, what steps you should take, and how to prevent it in the future.

Understanding Natural Gas and Its Odor

Natural gas is the most common type of fuel used for heating homes. It’s colorless, tasteless, and odorless in its natural state. However, gas companies add a chemical called mercaptan to give it a distinct odor. This smell, often likened to rotten eggs, serves as a safety mechanism to alert you to potential gas leaks.

The Heat Exchanger: A Common Culprit

The heat exchanger in your gas furnace plays a crucial role in heating your home. It separates the combustion chamber from the breathable air in your house. However, a cracked heat exchanger can cause furnace gas leaks, leading to the smell of gas when your furnace kicks on.

A furnace inspection by an Air Specialties HVAC technician can help detect a cracked heat exchanger. Regularly scheduled maintenance and furnace services in New Haven, CT are essential in preventing this issue.

Gas Lines and Furnace Exhaust

Gas lines supply natural gas to your furnace, while the furnace exhaust vents the combustion gases out of your home. A leak in either of these systems can result in a gas smell.

Leak detection in gas lines should always be carried out by professionals. If you smell gas near your furnace, it’s best to call an HVAC technician for a thorough inspection. They have the necessary tools and expertise to detect gas leaks and carry out necessary furnace repairs.

Incomplete Burn in the Combustion Chamber

Sometimes, the gas smell could be due to an incomplete burn in the combustion chamber. This usually happens when the furnace short cycles, i.e., when it turns off before reaching the desired temperature. An incomplete burn can cause an insignificant amount of unburnt gas to enter your home, resulting in a gas odor.

In such cases, a tune-up of your furnace can help ensure it’s working properly and prevent the smell of gas when it kicks on.

Carbon Monoxide: The Silent Threat

While a natural gas leak is dangerous due to the risk of fire or explosion, it’s not the only threat. Carbon monoxide, a byproduct of the combustion process in gas furnaces, is a colorless and odorless gas that can be deadly in high concentrations.

Carbon monoxide detectors are a crucial safety feature in any home with a gas furnace. If your carbon monoxide detector goes off, you should leave your home immediately and call your local fire department.

What To Do If You Smell Gas

If you smell gas when your furnace kicks on, it’s essential to take immediate action. And if the smell lingers, it’s best to err on the side of caution. Turn off your furnace and open windows for cross ventilation. Avoid using anything that could create a spark, such as light switches, phones, or garbage disposals. Immediately leave the house and contact your gas company or local fire department.

Preventing Gas Smells: The Importance of Regular Maintenance

Preventing gas smells starts with regular furnace service and routine maintenance. An HVAC technician can conduct a thorough inspection of your furnace, including the heat exchanger, gas line, and venting system. They can detect potential issues before they become significant problems, ensuring your furnace operates safely and efficiently.

Stay Comfortable and Safe With Air Specialties

If you’re experiencing a gas smell when your furnace kicks on, don’t hesitate to contact Air Specialties. Our team of experienced technicians can provide a comprehensive furnace inspection in New Haven, CT — ensuring your heating system is safe and functioning at its best. Remember, when it comes to gas leaks, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Categories
Furnaces

How Often Do You Replace a Furnace Filter?

When it comes to maintaining the efficiency and longevity of your HVAC system, few things are as essential as ensuring the cleanliness of your furnace filter. But the question arises: “How often do you replace a furnace filter?” Well, the answer varies based on several factors.

Understanding the Importance of Your Furnace Filter

Before we can discuss how often you should change your furnace filter, you should understand why these filters are so important. Your furnace filter plays a vital role in maintaining optimal indoor air quality. It traps airborne particles, such as dust, pollen, and pet dander, ensuring a cleaner and healthier living environment. When these particles accumulate, not only is the air quality compromised, but your HVAC system also has to work harder, leading to potential breakdowns and increased energy bills.

Determining When to Replace Your Filter

So, how often should you change your furnace filter? Well, the answer to this question isn’t as straightforward as you might think.

Determining the ideal moment to swap out your HVAC air filter can pose a bit of a conundrum. While there are prevailing guidelines suggesting that you should change your furnace filter every 90 days or so, it’s worth noting that various factors can influence how often this crucial maintenance task should be performed.

Frequency of Use

Are you wondering, “How often should you change your furnace filter?” If so, a good rule of thumb is to change the basic filter every 30 days if the system is continually running. However, if you’re using higher-quality filters, replacement might be needed every 90 days or so.

Type of Filter

Different types of filters have varying lifespans. Basic fiberglass filters might need a monthly change, while pleated filters with higher MERV ratings (which stands for “Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value”) can last up to three months or more. Ensure you know the type of filter you have to determine the appropriate replacement schedule.

Presence of Pets

Households with pets should consider changing their filters more frequently. Pet dander can quickly accumulate, causing your furnace filter to become clogged. So, how often do you replace a furnace filter when you have multiple furry friends? Overall, it’s a good idea to consider swapping out the filter at least once every 60 days.

Allergy Concerns

For those with allergies or respiratory conditions, ensuring clean indoor air quality is paramount. Now, you may be wondering, how often do you replace a furnace filter if you have family members with these conditions? When it comes down to it, you’ll want to consider changing the filter more often to trap particles effectively. Think every 30 to 60 days.

Observational Checks

Are you also scratching your head, asking, “How can I tell if my furnace filter needs changing?” Well, checking the filter visually every month is a good practice. If it looks clogged or darkened, it’s time for a replacement.

Consequences of Not Replacing Your Furnace Filter

Ignoring your furnace filter can have significant repercussions:

  • Reduced Air Quality: A clogged filter can’t effectively trap airborne particles, compromising your home’s air.
  • Increased Energy Bills: When the filter becomes dirty, your HVAC system has to work harder, leading to higher energy consumption.
  • Potential System Failures: The prolonged strain on your system can cause components, like the heat exchanger, to fail prematurely.
  • Shortened System Lifespan: Manufacturers recommend regular filter replacement to maintain the longevity of the heating and cooling systems.

So, what happens if you don’t change your furnace filter? Beyond reduced efficiency, the risks include potential health issues and a shorter HVAC system lifespan.

Incorporate Regular Maintenance

While filter replacement is essential, regular maintenance of your entire HVAC system ensures optimal performance. This includes regular checks on your air conditioner and furnace.

Are you unsure about your maintenance schedule or the state of your furnace filter? The specialists at Air Specialties, serving New Haven County, CT, and the surrounding areas, are here to help. Our New Haven heating professionals specialize in boilers, furnaces, and more.

Schedule Furnace Maintenance Today!

So, how often should you change your furnace filter? As you can see, there can be various answers to this question. Multiple factors can impact the frequency at which this simple yet crucial maintenance task should be performed.

For peace of mind and a well-maintained HVAC system, schedule your furnace maintenance in New Haven County, CT, or the surrounding area with Air Specialties. We’re a proud family-owned and operated company with decades of experience, ensuring your home stays comfortable and safe throughout the year. Don’t wait until you face an emergency — book an appointment today and breathe easier knowing your furnace is in expert hands!

Categories
Indoor Air Quality

Summer Allergies and Indoor Air Quality

For a significant portion of the population, summer brings with it the dreaded summer allergies. The culprit behind these allergic reactions is often the abundance of pollen, mold spores, and other allergens in the air. While outdoor air quality plays a major role in triggering allergies, it’s essential not to overlook the impact of indoor air quality on our overall well-being. 

Let’s explore the connection between summer allergies and indoor air quality, understand the role of allergens, and delve into effective strategies to improve the air you breathe indoors.

Understanding the Link: Summer Allergies and Indoor Air Quality

When we think of allergies, we often envision sneezing, itchy eyes, and runny noses. These symptoms are commonly associated with outdoor allergens such as pollen from grasses, trees, and flowers. However, what many people don’t realize is that indoor air quality can play a pivotal role in exacerbating these symptoms. Factors such as pet dander, dust mites, and mold spores can thrive indoors, leading to year-round allergy discomfort.

The Impact of Allergens: Pollen, Mold, and More

During the warmer months, pollen counts tend to surge, causing allergic reactions for countless individuals. While it’s difficult to escape pollen outdoors, you have more control over your indoor environment. 

Pollen can easily infiltrate your home through open windows and doors, hitching a ride on your clothing and belongings. If you have pollen allergies, you might find it’s impossible to escape summer allergy symptoms even indoors!

This is why implementing effective strategies to minimize pollen’s entry is crucial. Additionally, mold spores thrive in damp and humid environments, often found in bathrooms, basements, and kitchens. Regular cleaning and proper ventilation can help keep mold growth at bay.

Pets and Indoor Air Quality

For pet owners, the joy of having a furry friend often comes with a trade-off: pet dander. This common allergen is shed by animals and can trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. Regular grooming, vacuuming, and using air purifiers equipped with HEPA filters can significantly reduce the presence of animal dander indoors.

Air Filtration and Allergy Relief

Investing in high-quality air filters is an effective way to trap allergens and improve indoor air quality. Look for filters with a high Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) rating, as they are better at capturing smaller particles like pollen and dust mites. Regularly changing these filters is essential to maintain their efficiency.

Creating an Allergy-Resistant Environment

To minimize the impact of summer allergies on your well-being, consider the following tips:

  • Keep Windows Closed: While a gentle breeze may be inviting, it also invites pollen into your home. Keep windows closed during peak pollen season.
  • Monitor Pollen Count: Stay informed about the pollen count in your area. On days when the count is high, try to limit outdoor activities.
  • Regular Cleaning: Dust and vacuum regularly to minimize the accumulation of allergens. Use a vacuum cleaner equipped with a HEPA filter.
  • Use Air Purifiers: Place air purifiers with HEPA filters in commonly used areas to trap airborne allergens.
  • Maintain Optimal Humidity: Use a dehumidifier in damp areas to prevent mold growth, and maintain humidity levels around 30-50%.
  • Professional Inspection: Consider hiring indoor air quality experts in New Haven, CT, to assess your home and provide tailored recommendations.

Combat Summer Allergies With IAQ Solutions From Air Specialties

In the battle against summer allergies, addressing indoor air quality is a crucial step toward finding relief. By understanding the allergens that thrive indoors and implementing effective strategies to reduce their presence, you can create a more comfortable and allergen-resistant living environment. From investing in high-quality air filters to practicing regular cleaning and maintenance, you have the power to improve the air you breathe indoors. With these steps, you can embrace the joys of summer without constantly battling allergic reactions.

For those seeking indoor air quality solutions in New Haven, CT, Air Specialties is dedicated to helping you achieve a healthier and more comfortable living space. Say goodbye to summer allergies and hello to a breath of fresh, allergen-free air!

Categories
Air Conditioner

How Long Do Air Conditioners Last?

Air conditioners are an essential part of our lives, providing us with much-needed comfort during the sweltering summer months. But how long do air conditioners last? And what factors contribute to their longevity? Let’s explore the average lifespan of air conditioning systems, the importance of regular maintenance, and how wear and tear can affect your AC unit’s performance.

The Average Lifespan of Air Conditioners

The average lifespan of most air conditioning systems is around 15-20 years. However, this can vary depending on factors such as the quality of the unit, usage, and maintenance. Some high-quality central air systems can even last up to 25 years with proper care.

Factors Affecting AC Unit Lifespan

There are several factors that can affect how long AC units last. Some of these factors include:

  1. Quality of the AC Unit: Higher quality air conditioners tend to have a longer lifespan than lower-quality models. Investing in a reputable brand can help ensure your cooling system lasts for many years.
  2. Usage: The more you use your air conditioner, the shorter its lifespan will be. Running your AC constantly can cause wear and tear on the components, leading to a shorter life expectancy.
  3. Maintenance: Regular maintenance is crucial for extending the life of your air conditioner. Routine check-ups and tune-ups can help identify potential issues early, preventing costly repairs or the need to replace your AC unit prematurely.
  4. Environmental Factors: The environment in which your air conditioner operates can also affect its lifespan. For example, outdoor units exposed to extreme weather conditions may experience increased wear and tear.
  5. Installation: Proper installation by a qualified HVAC technician is essential for ensuring the longevity of your air conditioning system. Improper installation can lead to poor performance and a shorter lifespan for your AC unit.

The Importance of Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance plays a vital role in extending the life of your air conditioner. Scheduling an AC tune-up in New Haven County can help identify potential issues before they become more significant problems, saving you money on repairs and potentially extending the life of your cooling system.

Some essential maintenance tasks include:

  • Cleaning or replacing air filters regularly to maintain good air quality and ensure your AC unit runs efficiently.
  • Inspecting and cleaning the outdoor unit to remove debris and ensure proper airflow.
  • Checking refrigerant levels and refilling as needed.
  • Inspecting and cleaning the evaporator and condenser coils to improve energy efficiency and performance.

Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Air Conditioner

Despite regular maintenance and care, there will come a time when it’s necessary to replace your air conditioner. Here are some signs that it may be time to consider a new cooling system:

  • Your air conditioner is over 15-20 years old.
  • Your energy bills have increased significantly without any changes in usage.
  • Your AC unit requires frequent repairs.
  • Your home’s air quality has decreased, or the system struggles to maintain a consistent temperature.
  • Your air conditioner uses an outdated refrigerant (such as R-22) that is no longer being manufactured.

If you notice any of these signs, it might be time to consult with an HVAC professional about air conditioning installation in New Haven.

Time for a New AC Unit? Turn to Air Specialties

How long air conditioners last depends on several factors, including the quality of the unit, usage, maintenance, and environmental conditions. On average, most air conditioning systems last between 15-20 years. Regular maintenance and care can help extend the life of your cooling system, while also improving its energy efficiency and performance.

Ultimately, being proactive about maintaining your air conditioner and paying attention to signs of wear and tear will help ensure that your cooling system remains in peak condition for as long as possible. And when it’s finally time to replace your AC unit, investing in a high-quality system and proper installation will set you up for many more years of comfortable, efficient cooling.

Categories
Air Conditioner

6 Best Spring Cleaning Tips for AC Maintenance

Spring cleaning and air conditioner maintenance are essential to ensuring the system runs efficiently and avoids breaking down when you need it most. Of course, it’s a good idea to clean your vents and remove debris collected in or around your outdoor unit. But several components of your AC system aren’t as easy to get to that also need to be considered when cleaning your air conditioner in the spring. 

Air Specialties provides AC tune-ups in New Haven County. With our years of experience in serving HVAC units, we’ve come up with these spring cleaning AC tips highlighting some important areas of your cooling system that require a professional to clean.

1) Evaporator & Condenser Coils 

The first step in ensuring you have a clean air conditioner in the spring is checking the coils. Dirty condenser and evaporator coils can reduce the efficiency of an air conditioner and make it work harder, leading to increased energy consumption and cooling costs. If your air conditioning unit’s coils have collected dust and debris that can interfere with their operation, one of the most vital spring cleaning AC tips is to have a technician clean them during a service appointment. Coils can be delicate components in your AC unit, so only a professional should remove and clean them. 

2) Fan Blades

A qualified technician can check the AC unit’s blower fan blades to ensure they are clean and in working order. Dirty blower fan blades can make the blades imbalanced and reduce the airflow in your air conditioner. As a result, the decreased airflow can cause your condenser coils to freeze, leading to ice buildup and damage to the system. 

3) Drainage System

Bacteria can build up in the drainage system of your AC unit, causing mold and mildew to form. When this happens, you will notice musty smells coming from your vents. Debris can also college in the line preventing it from draining properly. During a routine cleaning, an HVAC technician can inspect your drainage lines to ensure they are free of any obstructions and don’t have any signs of mold, mildew, or algae. 

4) Ductwork

Dust, pollen, and other debris can collect in AC ductwork, particularly in areas with high pollution or homes with pets. Sometimes, odors may indicate problems with ducts requiring cleaning. But, in other instances, there are no signs of a reduction in air quality caused by dirty ducts that can trigger allergies and other illnesses. Generally, air ducts should be cleaned by a professional once every three to five years.

In addition to these spring cleaning AC tips, several other steps should be included in a maintenance checkup of your AC system to ensure it’s running correctly. Those steps include the following:

5) Checking Refrigerant Levels

The refrigerant in your AC unit absorbs heat from the air that cools your home. Therefore, if the refrigerant level is low, that will impact your unit’s ability to function. 

6) Replacing the Air Filter

Dirty air filters can also reduce the efficiency of your air conditioner. They are essential in ensuring you have a clean air conditioner in the spring and help ensure your air conditioner is working up to its capacity. An air filter clogged with dust and debris can restrict the airflow into your HVAC system and cause it to work harder. Additionally, dirty air filters can allow allergens to enter your home and reduce indoor air quality. 

Contact Us for Your Spring Air Conditioner Cleaning 

Heating and cooling units are complex systems that can be dangerous to work on because they are often connected to gas and power lines. Cleaning your AC in the spring without the right know-how can cause injury to homeowners and damage to the system. 

Ensuring your air conditioning system is clean and works properly is a job for a trained professional with the right tools and knowledge to perform HVAC maintenance quickly and safely. In cases where you have a total system failure, we can also provide air conditioner replacement in New Haven. But keeping up with annual maintenance can help you avoid major problems. 

Contact Air Specialties today to handle these spring cleaning AC tips for you and ensure that you have a clean air conditioner ready for spring!

Categories
Furnaces

Is It Ever Too Late for a Furnace Tune-Up?

Even as the end of winter approaches, it’s crucial to keep your heating system in top condition. A furnace tune-up can improve energy efficiency and indoor air quality while preventing unexpected furnace repairs. However, many homeowners may wonder if it’s too late to schedule a furnace maintenance appointment, especially if it’s already the end of winter. 

The good news is that it’s never too late to schedule a furnace tune-up. In this blog, we’ll discuss why furnace maintenance is essential, warning signs that your furnace needs attention, and how Air Specialties can help keep your heating system running smoothly throughout the year.

Signs that Your Furnace Needs a Tune-Up

Before we discuss why it’s never too late for furnace maintenance, let’s review some warning signs that your furnace needs attention. If your furnace turns on and off frequently or your thermostat doesn’t seem to be working correctly, these are signs that your heating system needs attention. 

A heat exchanger problem can lead to a carbon monoxide leak, which is a severe health hazard. If you have an older furnace (20 years or more), it may stop working without warning. A furnace tune-up can help identify any potential issues before they become costly repairs.

Even if your furnace appears to be working correctly, there are still many benefits to having an annual maintenance appointment. A well-maintained furnace can improve energy efficiency, reduce utility bills, and improve indoor air quality. A gas furnace cleaning service can remove dust and debris, which can help prevent allergies and respiratory issues.

Why It’s Never Too Late for Furnace Maintenance

If you go all winter without a furnace tune-up, you may be wondering if it’s too late. It’s not. After all, it’s better late than never. Even if winter is almost over, scheduling a furnace tune-up can still provide benefits. A technician can clean and inspect the furnace, identifying any issues that need to be addressed. This can help improve energy efficiency and prevent future repairs.

If your furnace is rapid short cycling, which means it turns on and off frequently, it’s essential to schedule a furnace tune-up. Short cycling can damage the furnace and lead to costly repairs. A technician can identify the root cause of short cycling and make the necessary repairs.

Air Specialties: Your Furnace Maintenance Experts

In conclusion, it’s never too late to schedule a furnace tune-up. Even if winter is almost over, a furnace maintenance appointment can still provide benefits. A well-maintained furnace can improve energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and prevent unexpected furnace repairs. If you’re experiencing any warning signs that your furnace needs attention, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with Air Specialties. 

At Air Specialties, we provide comprehensive furnace maintenance services to help homeowners stay warm and safe throughout the winter. Our experienced technicians can identify any potential issues and make the necessary repairs to keep your furnace running efficiently.

Categories
Furnaces Heating

Why Is My Furnace Running Constantly?

Why is my furnace running constantly? Many people ask this question while wondering how long a furnace should run before shutting off. What if your furnace keeps running when the thermostat is off?

Gas furnaces that run constantly are annoying to listen to, wear down the system, and increase your monthly energy bill. Luckily, the possible causes are easy to spot and don’t take long to fix. 

Here at Air Specialties, we’ve provided a list of reasons to help you answer the question of why the furnace is running constantly. We’re your CT heating specialists, with a team of certified technicians that can diagnose and repair any problem with your HVAC system.

What Is the Typical Furnace Run Time?

How long should a furnace run before shutting off? Typically, you can expect furnace cycles to run two to three times per hour. Each cycle runs for about 10-15 minutes. During freezing weather, this cycle may increase slightly.

Reasons My Furnace Is Running Constantly

Why is my furnace running constantly? There are several reasons why this may be happening. Here are some steps to follow to troubleshoot the cause of the issue:

1. Dirty Furnace Air Filter

A dirty furnace filter is the most common reason why your furnace may constantly be running. Your HVAC system must pull air into the equipment to warm the air before it circulates back out through the vents. 

A dirty air filter can obstruct your furnace, causing it to work harder to meet your heating demands. However, it will continue to run until your home reaches the desired temperature. 

If your air filter is dirty, replace it with a new one. You should do this every 1-3 months.

2. Wrong Thermostat Setting

Why is my furnace running constantly? If your thermostat is set too high, it will keep running to get it to that temperature. You may notice your house is hot before becoming aware that the furnace keeps running. Check your thermostat to see the set temperature. 

It’s also possible that you have a malfunctioning thermostat. For example, if your thermostat runs after the temperature change, it may be faulty.

3. Blower Issues

When your furnace is turned on but not producing warm air, the cause is likely an issue with the blower. For example, the blower may have corroded wires, or the fuse may have blown. 

If your room temperature feels colder than usual, check your thermostat. Since this problem involves electrical components, contact a professional HVAC company to fix the issue. 

4. Faulty Limit Switch

The limit switch controls the heat in your furnace. When the thermostat sends a signal to the controller that it’s time to turn on the heat, the switch sends a signal to the furnace. 

If your furnace has a faulty limit switch, it may not receive the signal. This lapse can cause it to run more often than necessary. A faulty limit switch may also be why your furnace keeps running when the thermostat is off. You should call an HVAC technician to perform an inspection if you suspect this is the issue.

5. Malfunctioning Pilot Light

A pilot light ignites the gas before it reaches the burner. If it’s malfunctioning, the broken pilot light can cause your furnace to run constantly. The reason is that the system can’t reach the set temperature without a sufficient supply of gas to warm the air. 

If the pilot light is malfunctioning, you may need to call an HVAC professional to have it replaced. In addition, you can find the reset button on your furnace to try resetting the pilot light, which may solve the problem. If this doesn’t work, it may be an issue with the heat exchanger.

Schedule an Inspection or Repair With Our Service Experts

Why is my furnace running constantly? How long should a furnace run before shutting off? Does your furnace keep running when the thermostat is off? Air Specialties can inspect your furnace and repair any heating system problems. 

Air Specialties also provides furnace cleaning in CT to ensure your furnace runs efficiently for the winter. Contact us today!

Categories
Furnaces

Is Your Furnace Short Cycling? Here’s What to Do

There’s nothing like a cozy and comfortable home during the cold winter months. But keeping your home warm when the temperatures drop below freezing takes a toll on your furnace. It can even cause the system to become inefficient and develop mechanical issues if proper care and maintenance are not taken into account. 

A typical problem with your furnace is short cycling or overheating. Short cycling refers to the start-and-stop cycle that keeps the furnace from properly heating your home. 

So what causes short-cycling furnaces? Can it be remedied? Here are some things you should know about short-cycling heating systems.

Overheating

It’s a complex question: “Why is my furnace short-cycling?” However, some common problems result in short cycling, such as an overheating system. If your furnace starts to overheat, it may shut off to prevent further damage. 

Overheating can also potentially create cracks in your heat exchanger, which could lead to dangerous carbon monoxide leaks in your home.

What to Do: Contact your local heating specialists to have them repair your unit according to its specific needs. When your furnace is working properly, you shouldn’t have to worry about overheating.

Thermostat Problem

If you have a short-cycling heater, turn next to your thermostat.

A broken or poorly placed thermostat is one of the leading causes of short cycling in furnaces. You may also want to rethink the location of your thermostat. Ideally, a thermostat that is placed too close to a heat source or in direct sunlight tends to warm up too quickly. This signals your furnace to shut off before your home is adequately warmed.

What to Do: Don’t place your thermostat directly over a heat register or near a drafty door or window. Test the unit regularly to ensure it is working optimally. Is your thermostat mounted in the wrong place? You can choose to either relocate the thermostat yourself or reach out to a professional for assistance.

Age-Related Problems

Maybe unsurprisingly, a short-cycling furnace can be linked to old age.

Your furnace’s efficiency tends to decline with age. An old and faulty furnace will short cycle more often and fail to warm your space adequately. Like all the other devices in your home, a furnace is subject to regular wear and tear, which becomes more pronounced with age.

What To Do: Wait until the furnace exhausts its usefulness due to advanced age before you act. Even if your old furnace has no significant mechanical issues, update it with a newer version that provides better performance and is more energy-efficient.

Dirty Air Filter

Dirty air filters restrict airflow and cause pressure to build up inside your system. The blocked air in the furnace, in turn, raises internal temperatures causing the unit to shut off automatically.

What to Do: Replace your air filters regularly, at least once each month, to prevent blockages and restricted airflow that leads to short cycling. You should also schedule frequent cleaning and maintenance to avoid clogged air filters.

Oversized Furnace

Have you checked the potential causes above but still find yourself asking, “Why is my furnace short-cycling?” If your furnace is short cycling with a new filter, an oversized furnace may be to blame. A heating system that’s too big for your home is one of the most common causes of short-cycling furnaces.

An oversized furnace that doesn’t match your home’s size may heat your small spaces quickly but unevenly. Such furnaces will short cycle rapidly with the rising temperatures in your home. Also, households with poor insulation may experience rapid short cycling. In this scenario, the furnace could be producing adequate heat, which is then lost through faulty seals, holes, and cracks.

What to Do: Install an appropriately sized furnace for the size of your home to avoid a short-cycling heater. You should also insulate your areas adequately to prevent energy loss.

Bad Flame Sensor

If you have a short-cycling furnace, you may be dealing with a malfunctioning or dirty flame sensor. When you have a bad flame sensor, your furnace flame will shut off right after lighting. If your furnace turns off after two to 30 seconds, this may be because your malfunctioning flame sensor cannot detect the heat created by the furnace. As a result, the gas valve closes and shuts off your furnace.

Although a malfunctioning flame sensor may shut off the gas at the wrong time, you shouldn’t feel too frustrated about this problem occurring. Flame sensors are safety devices that are simply trying to ensure that gas doesn’t enter your home and put your health at risk. If you’re experiencing this issue, rest assured that it’s nothing a professional HVAC technician can’t fix.

What to Do: You’ll need to either clean or replace your flame sensor with the help of a professional technician. A replacement will be needed if the sensor is broken or cracked.

Malfunctioning Blower Motor

While less common, a problem with the blower motor can cause a short-cycling furnace. The blower motor works by pushing air through your heating system and sending it out into your home. However, when the blower motor malfunctions, the warm air that’s generated will collect inside your furnace with no way of escaping — causing the furnace to turn off for safety reasons.

When it comes to a furnace blower motor, it’s important that the hot air flows out into your home. If the heat gets trapped inside the furnace, this can lead to overheating and cause damage to various critical parts. Although this problem can get in the way of your family’s comfort, it’s also important to recognize that a blower motor issue can lead to further repairs or a replacement if not handled promptly.

What to Do: Inspect your vents for proper airflow. If you notice a weak airflow — or none at all — this could mean that your blower motor is faulty. When you contact a professional HVAC technician for assistance, they’ll let you know if the blower motor needs to be replaced or if it can be repaired. Our heating experts specialize in everything from furnace replacements to boiler repair in CT, so you can trust us to provide you with a reliable solution.

Blocked Exhaust Flue

Have you checked all the possibilities above but still find yourself asking, “Why is my furnace short-cycling?” There’s one more crucial option worth considering: the exhaust flue is blocked.

Your furnace’s exhaust flue is responsible for venting the noxious gases that are created during the combustion process. This small but mighty component is incredibly important, as it helps prevent these gases from entering your home.

However, it’s important to know that this part isn’t immune to problems. There’s a chance that the flue can become clogged with debris, foreign objects, or an animal’s nest. If the flue detects a blockage, the component will tell the furnace to shut down completely.

What to Do: You can shut off the furnace and disconnect the flue to inspect it for a clog. From here, you might be able to extract the blockage yourself. If you suspect that an animal is in the flue or you don’t feel comfortable handling the job yourself, you should contact a professional for assistance.

Furnace Repair and Maintenance Services in New Haven, CT

Why is my furnace short-cycling? As you can see above, this question isn’t as easy as you might think. There are many possibilities; for example, your furnace could be too large for your home, or you could be experiencing a clogged flue. It might take some troubleshooting before you get to the root cause of the issue.

If you’ve checked your furnace for the problems above and are still dealing with short-cycling problems, don’t wait to contact a professional HVAC company for help.

If your furnace is experiencing unexplained short cycling, it means its efficiency is rapidly declining. The cumulative cost of repair may surpass a new unit’s price, and you should consider replacements over continuous maintenance. When you need a gas furnace service in CT because of a short-cycling heater, turn to your local heating and air conditioning company for assistance. We offer everything from heating system repairs to air conditioning replacement in New Haven to keep your home comfortable!
If you need help with your HVAC system, contact Air Specialties. We are a local company offering furnace repair and furnace maintenance in New Haven, CT. Get in touch with us today for more information about what we can do for you!

Categories
Air Conditioner

6 Reasons Why Your Air Conditioner Turns Off By Itself

Air conditioning problems can be incredibly frustrating, especially if temperatures are reaching record highs just outside your door. One common problem that can cause many homeowners to scratch their heads is when their AC unit turns off after about 15 minutes. One minute your air conditioner could be running fine, and the next, the unit has completely shut off. While this problem can be downright puzzling, it can also put your comfort at risk since your home never gets as cool as you would like it to.

So, why does your air conditioner turn off by itself? There can be several different reasons why this issue is happening. Let’s go over them in more detail below.

Faulty Thermostat

If your air conditioner keeps shutting off, you’ll want to first check the thermostat. Your thermostat may fail to properly sense the temperature inside your home. While this problem can be due to an electrical issue, you might want to replace your thermostat’s batteries to see if this simple fix makes a difference.

Try replacing the batteries, and if the problem persists, don’t hesitate to contact a professional for help. A technician will perform a repair, or they might suggest relocating the thermostat to a different part of the house. If your thermostat is currently in a shady place or near a cool air vent, the device might inaccurately believe that your entire home is cool and could shut off the AC unit as a result.

Dirty Air Filter

Why does your air conditioner turn off by itself? The issue could lie with the air filter. Believe it or not, keeping the filter in your HVAC system clean can make a significant difference when it comes to your comfort, electric bills, and air conditioner performance.

Short cycling is a common problem associated with dirty air filters. When the air filter becomes blocked with debris, this makes it difficult for air to pass to and from the air conditioner’s air handler. This poor airflow can cause the evaporator coils to freeze — and the AC unit can shut off as a result. Additional signs of frozen evaporator coils can include water leaks and a clogged condensate drain line.

Refrigerant Leaks

If your air conditioner keeps shutting off, you’ll also want to be on the lookout for any refrigerant leaks. As your air conditioner gets older, it can experience different types of wear and tear. Corrosion and weakening components could lead to these leaks.

Low refrigerant levels can cause many problems for air conditioning systems. For example, this problem often creates a sudden change in pressure that causes the outdoor compressor unit to shut down.

Damaged Compressor

Your air conditioner has two important components: the indoor unit and the outdoor unit. As we mentioned above, this outdoor system is known as a “compressor.” Like most other parts, this compressor can experience wear and tear over time — and that might be why your AC unit keeps shutting off.

So, why does your air conditioner turn off by itself when it has a damaged compressor? When it comes down to it, your air conditioner can’t do its job without a fully-functioning compressor. If this unit overheats, malfunctions, or fails completely, the entire cooling system will shut down as a result.

The problem could be caused by dirt and debris getting inside the unit, or it could potentially be due to regular old age. No matter the reason, it’s important to contact a professional technician to get to the bottom of the problem once and for all.

Malfunctioning Run Capacitor

If your air conditioner keeps shutting off after checking for the problems listed above, you could be dealing with a faulty run capacitor. What is a run capacitor? Think of it as the device that gives air conditioning units a sudden rush of energy when starting a new cooling cycle. The run capacitor is constantly storing energy, which it will provide to ensure that the air conditioner’s fan motor is running properly.

When you have a malfunctioning run capacitor on your hands, the air conditioner won’t receive the continuous supply of energy it needs to keep on running. In the end, this could be why your air conditioner starts then stops after only a few seconds.

Oversized AC

When your air conditioner keeps shutting off, you should check to make sure that your cooling system isn’t too large for your house. Although you might think installing an oversized air conditioner will benefit you and your family in the long run, it won’t actually improve your comfort. Instead, you might experience the exact opposite.

If your AC is too big, it’ll finish cooling your home much quicker than if you’d installed a smaller unit. While this may seem like a perk, the air conditioner will end up shutting down much quicker as a result. As you can probably imagine, you could end up experiencing hot and cold spots throughout your home, as well as higher energy bills.

How can you fix this problem? It all comes down to contacting a professional for a New Haven AC replacement. It’s important to ensure that you install an air conditioner that fits your home’s size and cooling needs.

Schedule a Service With Our Air Conditioning Experts

Why does your air conditioner turn off by itself? There are many potential reasons for this issue, which is why you should call an experienced heating and cooling company that will help you diagnose and fix the problem.
Air Specialties is here to provide you with a dependable solution, whether you’re dealing with a damaged AC compressor or a refrigerant leak. Contact us today to learn more about our CT air conditioning repairs!

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