Boehmer Heating & Cooling Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Furnace’

Features to Look for in a New Furnace

Monday, December 18th, 2017

new-gas-furnaceWhen on the market for something like a furnace, air conditioner, or any other necessity, it may seem as though the options don’t really matter. Can one furnace really differ so much from another? Shouldn’t you just let the technician pick out your new furnace for you? We don’t think so.

There are so many features in a modern furnace that can make a huge difference in your comfort and in the amount of energy you use. Find a quality contractor, share your furnace must-haves, and make this winter the most comfortable ever!

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Have You Had Your Furnace Checked Yet?

Monday, October 24th, 2016

Now is the time! If your furnace has not had a thorough inspection yet this year, we strongly recommend getting on the phone with your local heating and air conditioning company ASAP! What makes this service so important?

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When Is It Time to Upgrade That Older Furnace?

Monday, January 4th, 2016

Your furnace has been a huge help through the years, but at some point you’ll have to move on to a new unit. Of course, you don’t want to spend the money unless it’s necessary. On the other hand, upgrading your furnace means better efficiency, performance, and safety. Here, you’ll see why it’s so important to replace your furnace after 15 years, and how a brand new furnace could help you to save money from month to month.

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Common Furnace Problems

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

During the cooler months in Whitehall, it may seem as though the winter weather will never end. Your furnace works hard to keep you comfortable during the chilliest days, which means each one of the parts of your system gets quite a bit of use. Eventually, excessive use can really take its toll on the parts of your furnace, which means that you may need repairs. Here are some of the most common furnace repairs that our technicians deal with at Boehmer Heating & Cooling.

  • Blower Fan Motor Replacement: Warm air moves into your home through the ventilation system in your home after a blower fan pushes it past a heat exchanger and into the ductwork. If this blower fan is not operating properly, then you won’t get the level of heating you need in your home. What’s more problematic is that the furnace plenum could overheat—were in not for the safety switch in place meant to prevent this. The furnace limit switch shuts off the unit when it’s at risk of overheating, so you won’t get any heat at all. Often, this just means that you need replacement.
  • Cleaning the Flame Sensor: The flame sensor is another safety feature which helps to protect your home and family. This component keeps gas from leaking into your home if the pilot won’t light. When there is no flame, the probe senses the trouble and shuts down the unit. However, this sensor may malfunction and assume there is no flame if it is too dirty, shutting down the unit unnecessarily.
  • Repairing or Replacing the Thermostat: Sometimes, a problem with the furnace is a result of a faulty thermostat. Poor wiring can cause the furnace to short cycle, or it may not turn on at all. You may decide to replace your existing thermostat with a more efficient model, like a smart thermostat that allows you to change the temperature from your smart phone even when you’re far away.

Call the people at Boehmer Heating & Cooling to repair your furnace in Whitehall. We have years of experience repairing and maintaining heating equipment, and we will work hard to get your furnace back to normal operation as quickly as possible or help you to find a replacement unit and install it for you. Call a member of our team of heating technicians today and ask about our comprehensive furnace services.

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How a Furnace Limit Switch Helps Keep Your Home Safe

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

Through urban legend and other unreliable means, furnaces have garnered a level of concern around their ability to be safe. While safety should always be taken with any type of combustion system, today’s heating systems are equipped with a number of safety mechanisms and devices, many which are redundant, that ensure your personalized safety. If you have a furnace, one of these safety mechanisms is a component known as the limit switch.

What Is a Limit Switch?

The limit switch is part of your blower assembly and helps with the operation of the blower while also keeping your system safe from overheating. In regard to blower operation, the limit switch is the device that doesn’t allow your blower to start pushing air through your ductwork until the generated heat has reached the correct temperature; this keeps your furnace’s fan from blowing chilly air into your home. The second job of the limit switch has to do with your safety. This is because the limit switch is also equipped to sense when the air around the heat exchanger becomes too hot, and if the switch senses this, it can instantly kill the burner and extinguish all combustion.

Common Problems with the Limit Switch

Should your limit switch malfunction, you may see the following:

  • Constant running of the blower
  • Blower won’t turn on
  • Burner won’t stay lit

Operating your furnace, or attempting to operate the furnace, with a safety mechanism malfunctioning is not advisable as your safety and the safe operation of your system may be at risk. It is also not advisable to try and repair the problem yourself; instead, call an expert for assistance.

If you have questions about the safety mechanisms on your furnace in your Brentwood home, or are experiencing heating issues with your furnace, call Boehmer Heating & Cooling today and schedule an appointment with one of our specialists. We offer professional furnace services in the Brentwood area.

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Why Schedule New Furnace Installation This Fall?

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

So, your furnace is getting on in years, and you think it’s time to replace it. But when should you actually have it done? Does it even matter when you get a new furnace? As a matter of fact, it does. The fall season is the best time to ensure that your new furnace gets off to a good start. Let’s take a look at why you should have a new furnace installed in fall.

Perfect Timing

There’s a reason that most annual furnace maintenance takes place in fall. The best time for any sort of preventative maintenance is right before a period of heavy usage. This ensures that your furnace is in peak condition at the time that you need it the most. The same principle applies to installing a new furnace. A new furnace is already in the best possible condition, which means that it will be giving its best performance during the winter months. Since you were probably planning on scheduling an HVAC service call during the fall season anyway, why not install a new furnace at the same time? That way, you can stay right on schedule without having to change any plans to accommodate a new appointment time.


Installing a new furnace necessitates the removal of the old one. This is obvious, we know, but it should factor into your thinking about when to install your new furnace. Whenever you install your new furnace, you’ll be depriving yourself of heat for at least a day. That day without heat is bound to be uncomfortable if you wait until the winter months.

You should also consider the ebb and flow of demand on HVAC repair services. During the winter months, calls for fast furnace repair tend to spike. This makes things more difficult if you want to install your furnace during the winter months. You are far more likely to get prompt service if you call for a furnace installation in fall, when there are fewer customers to compete with.

If you need a new furnace installed, call Boehmer Heating & Cooling. We install furnaces throughout the Whitehall area.

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Top 3 Reasons to Install a Furnace

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

Furnaces are one of the oldest of all ways to heat a home; only the fireplace pre-dates them, and the furnace arose from the same principles as a fireplace. However, furnaces have kept up technologically with other heating systems and remain the most popular way to provide warmth for houses to this day.

So even though you have a number of options for home heating, such as a boiler or a heat pump, a furnace may still be the best choice of all. We’ll look at some of the reasons you might want to install a furnace in Pittsburgh, PA for the next bout of freezing weather. Call Boehmer Heating & Cooling to talk to our heating specialists about scheduling a new installation for your home.

3 reasons to consider furnace installation

  1. Heating effectiveness: Pittsburgh winters can be tough. You want a heater that can bring you sufficient warmth to keep the cold back. Furnaces, in particular gas-powered furnaces, are among the most effective heating systems when it comes to the basic job of heating. They outperform heat pumps, which can struggle with extreme low temperatures, and are often a good choice for older homes that have insulation problems.
  2. Flexibility: When it comes to matching heating systems with homes, furnaces have the most flexible options. Regardless of your heating requirements, there is almost always a furnace that can take care of it. They come in many different sizes, efficiencies, and fuel types. With electric, gas, propane, and oil options available, you can find the furnace that fits your budget and home comfort needs.
  3. Fuel efficiency: Gas furnaces are the most popular furnace model, and they are among the most fuel-efficient heating systems available. Modern high-efficiency gas furnaces can score AFUE ratings of 95% and above, which means only 5% of the heat is wasted. This will help reduce your heating bills while still giving you the same superior heating performance.

You’ll only get the most from your furnace with professional installation

If you think a furnace is your optimal choice for heating your home, call up professional installers to help you choose a unit and size it to fit your home. Without the work of skilled installers, you could end up with a furnace that’s wrong for your home and works incorrectly, possibly even dangerously.

Boehmer Heating & Cooling will make sure you end up with the right unit for you. Our trained technicians will deliver a fast and effective installation that will leave you with many years of trouble-free warmth. Call us today for Pittsburgh, PA furnace services.

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What Makes a Furnace High Efficiency?

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

The modern furnace makes better use of its fuel supply than the models of only a few decades ago. Many furnaces on today’s market carry the ENERGY STAR label from the U.S. EPA because of their efficient use of fuel and high return of heating power.

One type of furnace that goes above and beyond for energy savings is the high-efficiency condensing furnace. Where most furnaces can score AFUE ratings in the 80%–90% range, a high-efficiency model can climb as high as 98%—meaning only 2% of the natural gas goes to waste as exhaust.

Here’s an explanation for how these modern marvels achieve this. If you are interested in installation of a high-efficiency furnace in Pittsburgh, PA, talk to our specialists at Boehmer Heating & Cooling.

High-Efficiency Furnace Operation

The reason these furnaces waste so little energy is that they are capable of using the exhaust from the first part of the heating process to generate more heat. Here is how it works:

A standard furnace contains a single heat exchanger. High temperature combustion gas enters the chamber and heats up its walls. After air is blown around the exchanger and absorbs the heat, the cooled-down gas changes into a vapor. This vapor vents out the exhaust flue.

But a high-efficiency condensing furnace contains second heat exchanger. The exhaust vapor moves into this chamber, where it condenses into a liquid. The process of condensing causes a release of more heat, warming up the walls of the heat exchanger and providing additional warmth for the air that will be sent into the ventilation system. The liquid exhaust is then drained from the second heat exchanger.

The result of this is a reduction in energy waste. The more efficient performance means these furnaces will rapidly make up for their costlier installation with large savings off of heating bills.

High-Efficiency Furnace Repair and Maintenance

There is one drawback to high-efficiency furnaces which you need to know about: because they are more intricate machines that require a balance of many components, they require very attentive maintenance and repairs. All furnaces need regular maintenance and prompt repairs when necessary, but with a high-efficiency furnace you must take particular care of it or lose the benefits it provides.

Boehmer Heating & Cooling has maintenance plans that will make caring for your high-efficiency furnace in Pittsburgh, PA much simpler. Our 24-hour emergency service will also put you more at ease. Call us today for installation, maintenance, or repairs for your furnace.

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Furnace Problems Caused by Your Thermostat

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

The thermostat is a small object, but it performs a big job: it’s your means of communicating with the furnace in your home. If the thermostat develops malfunctions, it can threaten the comfort of your home.

When a thermostat starts to go awry, it can first appear as if something is wrong within the furnace cabinet or the ducts. This is one reason you should always rely on assistance from HVAC professionals when you have problems with your heating; attempting repairs on your own can lead to worse trouble if you are trying to fix something that isn’t broken. Call in experts like the ones on staff at Boehmer Heating & Cooling and let them locate the source of the trouble with your furnace in Pittsburgh, PA and find the best way to repair it.

Here are a few of the troubles you can experience with your furnace because of a faulty thermostat:

  • Furnace won’t come on: If the furnace won’t start up when the temperature drops, you should check the thermostat first to make sure you have it set correctly. If the thermostat has lost its connection to the furnace, it won’t activate the igniter. The thermostat might also be miscalibrated, so it senses incorrect indoor temperatures and registers the house as warmer than it actually is.
  • Furnace won’t stop running: A broken thermostat can also mean the furnace will continue to run, overworking its parts and making your home too hot. As with a furnace that won’t come on, this might indicate a thermostat miscalibration. Or it could be electrical trouble with the wire from the thermostat that switches the furnace on and off.
  • Furnace short-cycles: “Short cycling” is when the furnace comes on for only a brief period and then shuts off before completing its heating cycle. Again, this might be a thermostat miscalibration: the thermostat registers prematurely that the furnace has reached its target temperature and shuts it off. This will damage your furnace, drain power, and leave parts of your home cold.

Here’s something to keep in mind about thermostat operation: a thermostat is a switch, not a throttle. It turns your furnace on and off; it doesn’t increase the amount of heat it produces or speed it up. Turning the thermostat up to 90°F won’t heat up your home faster; it will just keep the furnace running until it reaches that point.

Get in touch with Boehmer Heating & Cooling when you need repairs for your furnace in Pittsburgh, PA. You don’t want a malfunctioning thermostat to leave you a deep freeze this winter. We have 24-hour emergency service to make sure you won’t stay cold for long.

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Furnace Sounds and What They Try to Tell You

Monday, November 11th, 2013

Science has yet to invent a home furnace with an artificial intelligence that allows it to tell you exactly what is wrong with it and what repairs you need to do to keep it working. However, furnaces do have an innate way of sending you warnings about impending repair needs and potential breakdowns: unusual sounds. If you’ve lived with your furnace for more than a year, you already have a good idea of what noises it makes during standard operation. When any out-of-the-ordinary sounds start to emanate from the furnace cabinet, pay attention to them and then make the necessary steps to get repairs done.

Usually, this means calling in HVAC experts. Both electrical and gas furnaces pose potential health hazards to anyone who tampers with them without professional experience. Boehmer Heating & Cooling has worked on furnaces since 1933, so we have the experience necessary to diagnose the problems with your furnace in Pittsburgh, PA and fix it effectively and safely.

Common furnace warning sounds

  • Loud clicking: There is often a simple reason for this noise: loose bolts on the outside cabinet. However, if you have a gas-powered furnace and find this isn’t what’s wrong, the culprit could the ignition, or possibly even a problem with the heat exchanger or gas supply. Any of these problems should be examined by a professional as soon as possible to make sure your furnace is operating safely.
  • Groaning, squealing: This is probably the motor bearings that operate the blower fans wearing down or malfunctioning because of dust. Get repairs done before the motors need to be replaced entirely.
  • Clanking: If the belt from the blower motor to the fan becomes cracked, it will come loose and begin striking against the casing or other components. You don’t want to attempt to change the belt yourself, even if you’re familiar with doing a similar repair with a car motor fan belt. Get professionals to replace the belt before it starts to damage other parts of the furnace.
  • Rumbling, booming: Dirt and grime have probably contaminated the burners, choking off their supply of oxygen and preventing the gas jets from igniting and providing heat to the combustion chamber. This can also affect the pilot light. The burners will need to be professionally cleaned.

Boehmer Heating & Cooling has technicians ready around the clock, seven days a week, to get you the repairs you need on your Pittsburgh, PA furnace. Don’t ignore those strange sounds in your furnace—get expert help from Boehmer Heating & Cooling right away.

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