Thursday, December 23, 2010

Three Most Common Heating Systems Needing Service in Winter

Furnace, Boiler, Heat Pump? Whatever your Heating or Cooling System, you need to keep them up to par in the winter time.

by Rhydon Atzenhoffer
December 23, 2010

So when is the last time you got your heating and cooling system check out or inspected? For most people they would answer, "well the last time it stopped working." However, this is the worst thing to hear. For many people their systems go down when they need them the most simply because of failure to have routine maintenance or check ups done twice a year.

For the best performance of any heating or cooling system it is important to have both a spring or winter checkup. For the purpose of this article I am focusing on tune-ups in the winter. The winter tune up is extremely important, more so than the spring because many people will go without air at times, but nearly no person will ever go without heat.

First we will discuss the three most common systems and discuss what is important for the three during winter tune-ups. The three most common are listed below.

1. Heat Pump Systems.
2. Furnace and Air Conditioning Systems.
3. Boiler Radiant Heat Systems.

The first listed is a Heat Pump System. This consists of an indoor blower assembly and coil, and an outdoor condensing coil and fan with a compressor. These coils need to be cleaned regularly during the year. Most importantly to keep the amount of cleaning necessary down change yours filters. The tune up assures that your system has the proper amount of refrigerant to have the most efficient operating performance. Also know the refrigerant that your system uses. If your system is older it will most likely use R-22, if it has been installed in the last 1-3 years it will most likely be R-410a. Both are good refrigerants but R-410a does not operate as well in extreme cold as R-22. Once below7-10 degrees Fahrenheit R-410a can start to loose its luster as far as giving you the heat you want. Because of that is one of the many reasons people opt for the second option.

Second on the list is the Furnace and Air Conditioning combination which might be the most popular across the United States. This system relies on an Indoor Coil that is on top of a Furnace and Blower Assembly, and Attached to an outside Condenser. The difference here is that a straight AC system does not have a reversing valve for the heating cycle like a Heat Pump. Instead it relies on the Furnace to pick up all of the heating. These systems will have either R-22 or R-410a for the cooling system, but instead of worrying about extreme cold lowering performance they have the Furnace which either runs on Fuel Oil, LP (Propane), or Natural Gas. Furnaces offer much more heating, and work into extreme temperatures and depending on your physical location or climate most likely offer a better solution.The only draw back can be that furnaces have a very dry heat, and you may want to seek Air Quality Specialization in order to maintain the best air quality and living environment atmosphere as possible.

The final of the three listed is a Boiler powered Radiant Heating System. This most likely is primarily for heating. A separate Air Conditioning or Heat Pump system may be existent with the radiant system acting the the stead of a furnace. Radiant heat is based with a hot water boiler system powered by Fuel Oil, LP (Propane), or Natural Gas just like a furnace. However, the system will be piped throughout the home with baseboard radiators. These radiators contain special copper piping with hundreds of aluminum fins on them to assist in the conduction and release of heat into the room from the hot water flowing through the pipes. Another great aspect of having a boiler system to heat your home is also that it can be combined with your plumbing to heat your hot water as well limiting the financial burden of additional large hot water heaters.

It is important that these systems be maintained over time to ensure the operate properly and keep you comfortable. For more information you can click the links inside of the article or visit our company services page on our website to view and request information on Heat Pumps, Furnaces, and Radiant Heating Systems. We also offer Biomass, Solar and Waste Oil fired systems to assist in our nation going green. Please have a wonderful holiday season and remember to ENJOY YOUR LIFE. Click Here for Consultations.