Boehmer Heating & Cooling Blog: Posts Tagged ‘McCandless’

Why Schedule Routine Air Conditioning Maintenance?

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Any piece of equipment that gets a lot of use will start to develop small problems and issues over time. Your air conditioning system is no exception. Call the Pittsburgh air conditioning maintenance professionals at Boehmer Heating & Cooling if you’re interested in setting up regular visits with our technicians. Getting regular maintenance of your AC system has huge potential benefits. Here is a quick list of some of them.

  • Reduced repair – One of the potential benefits to getting regular maintenance for your AC is that it could reduce the need for repair. The small problems that your air conditioning equipment develops over time will likely turn into larger repairs if ignored. When you have an expert technician regularly inspecting your equipment they will be able to find those issues and repair them before they get worse.
  • Extended equipment life – Another huge benefit to getting regular air conditioning maintenance is that it could allow your AC to last longer. We often get called to replace air conditioning systems whose condition completely deteriorated over time because of lack of maintenance.
  • Increased efficiency – The small issues that your air conditioning system develops over time can cause it to have to work harder to cool your home. This increases the strain on the equipment and can reduce the efficiency of your AC unit. During regular maintenance visits your technicians will look for those problems and repair them which could return some of the efficiency to the system.

For all your Pittsburgh air conditioning maintenance needs, make sure that you call Boehmer Heating & Cooling. We have years of experience maintaining all different types and brands of air conditioning systems. 

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Why Consider Installing a Heat Pump?

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

If you’re in the market for a new cooling system, there is an unprecedented variety of system types and brands. The selection process is critical to the future of your comfort, however, and should not be taken lightly. You should consider not only the energy efficiency of your new system, but also its performance. Many of today’s models boast high SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) ratings, which is a good barometer for how your system will perform in the future. The higher the SEER rating, the better the efficiency. And this is precisely why the heat pump makes such a good cooling option. But that’s not the only reason. Let’s take a look at some reasons why you should consider installing a heat pump in your Pittsburgh, PA home. For more info, call Boehmer Heating & Air Conditioning today!

  • Year-round comfort: Part of the attraction of heat pumps is that they offer both cooling and heating. They operate in the same way as an air conditioner does during the summer. They remove the warm indoor air and replace it with cool air by means of a circulating refrigerant. During the cooler months, they use the thermal energy of the outdoor air to warm the indoors. This works because of a component called the reversing valve, which allows the refrigerant cycle to reverse direction. If it gets too cold for your heat pump to heat your house, you can supplement it with another system, such as a furnace.
  • Energy efficiency: Energy efficiency is a critical factor if you’re considering installing a new system. Whether you’re looking to replace your existing AC or need a comprehensive comfort system for a new home, you need to make sure that you’re getting the most for your dollar. Heat pumps are widely known for the small amount of electricity they consume during operation.
  • Geothermal: The heat pumps we have been referring to above are known as air-source heat pumps, but there is an alternative type that is quickly gaining popularity. Geothermal technology uses a ground-source heat pump to offer heating and cooling throughout your home. This tends to be far more energy efficient than other conventional systems. Check with your local technician to see if geothermal is right for your property.

If you need a heat pump, call Boehmer Heating & Air Conditioning today!


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Air Conditioning Repair in Pittsburgh: Why is My Refrigerant Low?

Monday, May 6th, 2013

As we enter the cooling season, you need to make sure that your air conditioning system is ready for the heat and humidity of the summer. Even if you haven’t yet turned it on, then do so now. Take a listen, and see if your home reaches your desired temperature. One of the common root causes of inadequate cooling is low refrigerant, which needs to be of a certain “charge” at all times in order for the AC to function effectively and efficiently. In this post, we’d like to look at the reasons why your refrigerant may be low. For superior air conditioning repair in Pittsburgh, call Boehmer Heating & Cooling today!

The refrigerant in your AC is chemically designed to undergo intense changes in temperature and pressure to facilitate the removal of heat from your home and to send cool air throughout your ducts. The compressor takes the low pressure gas from the evaporator coil and turns it into a high pressure, high temperature gas; so hot, in fact, that when this refrigerant circulates through the condenser coils, its heat dissipates into the outside air, no matter what the temperature is. The evaporator coil takes the now cool liquid refrigerant and cools the air, while the air handler sends the conditioned air back through the ductwork. If your system has too little refrigerant, then these processes will simply not be as effective, and may not work at all.

There are basically two reasons why your refrigerant is low:

  • Undercharged at installation: One of the reasons why professional installation is so important is that it very much matters what the “charge” of your refrigerant is during installation. Only a certified technician will know exactly how much refrigerant to put into your system.
  • Refrigerant leak: This is the most prevalent reason for low refrigerant. Some leaks are microscopic punctures that are hardly noticeable. Your tech has various equipment and techniques for refrigerant leak detection. Only a certified technician should ever handle refrigerant, so it is always best to call a professional if you think you have a leak.

If you’re concerned about the levels of refrigerant in your AC, call Boehmer Heating & Cooling for air conditioning repair in Pittsburgh today! 

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Pittsburgh Air Conditioning Tip: Why Hire a NATE-Certified Professional

Monday, April 29th, 2013

As the summer approaches in Pittsburgh, you may be thinking about upgrading your AC, or perhaps simply calling for some minor repairs or maintenance. It’s important that you hire a NATE-certified professional for any work done on your home cooling system. NATE stands for North American Technician Excellence. Founded in 1997, and headquartered in Arlington, VA, NATE is the largest and most widely recognized certification organization for the HVAC industry, including air conditioning installation, repair, and maintenance. NATE certification gives you confidence that the work to be done on your home is of superior quality, and that your tech has the latest skills and knowledge. For more information, or to schedule Pittsburgh air conditioning services, call Boehmer Heating & Air Conditioning today!

Let’s take a look at why you should hire a NATE-certified professional:

  • Training: NATE-certified technicians have to pass a rigorous examination, which, in combination with conscientious on-the-job training and practical application, gives them the fundamentals of safety, tools, construction, science, mathematics, measurements, and basic electrics. The AC specialization exam gives the NATE-certified tech a comprehensive test about AC plumbing (brazing, flare fittings, soldering), ductwork, electrical systems, leak detection, and measuring airflow, among other subjects.
  • Confidence: The NATE logo is a standard of excellence and consumer confidence. It helps you sift through the many AC contractors available in your area so that you can receive the best possible AC service for your home. This gives you peace of mind, so that you know your home is in good hands.
  • Up-to-date know-how: A standard NATE certification lasts 5 years. One of the reasons why NATE certification is highly prized is due to its recertification policy, which ensures that NATE AC techs are up to date on the latest technology and industry equipment. This is important. It allows you to take advantage of the latest developments in energy efficiency and cooling performance so that you can make an informed decision.

Still unconvinced? Talk to a NATE-certified professional at Boehmer Heating & Cooling for excellent Pittsburgh air conditioning services! 

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Benefits of Using a Heat Pump in Pittsburgh

Monday, April 1st, 2013

At Boehmer Heating & Cooling, we do everything we can to ensure that our clients are able to keep their homes comfortable throughout the entire year. That is why we offer such a great selection of home heating and air conditioning systems to choose from, as well as a wide array of outstanding HVAC services. We also like to help our customers keep comfortable in the most efficient way possible. We know how expensive it can be to heat and cool a home. If you are interested in an efficient alternative to traditional heating and cooling systems, give us a call to learn more about the benefits of using a heat pump in Pittsburgh.

One great benefit of using a heat pump in Pittsburgh is the fact that it acts as both a heating and air conditioning system. This means that you only need to invest in one system in order to keep your home comfortable throughout the year. When you schedule your heat pump installation with a qualified professional you can count on a great, reliable performance, no matter what season it is.

Of course, many home comfort system options double as both heating and cooling systems. What truly sets a heat pump apart is the great benefit of its outstanding efficiency. Heat pumps are among the most efficient heating and cooling systems available. The more efficient a heating and cooling system is, the less it costs to keep your home comfortable.

The key to the great efficiency with which heat pumps operate is their dependence on the heat transfer principle to heat and cool your home, as opposed to the consumption of fuel. A heat pump uses just a small amount of electricity to transfer heat into or out of your home, unlike a traditional system. By transferring existing heat, a heat pump is able to keep you comfortable while using very little energy. This is not only a great benefit to your budget but also to the environment.

To learn more about the benefits of using a heat pump in Pittsburgh, call Boehmer Heating & Cooling. We have the answers to all your questions. Let us keep you comfortable with greater efficiency than ever before.

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Upgrading to a More Efficient Furnace in Pittsburgh

Monday, March 25th, 2013

The spring off-season is a great time to make any upgrades to your heating system. If your furnace is getting older or requires frequent repairs, then it’s probably time to think about a high-efficiency replacement. Efficiency measures the amount of fuel or electrical input to the amount of heating output. Upgrading is a great way to improve your long-term savings, and allows you to take control of the future of your home comfort. Today’s energy-efficient models are powerful systems that make very little waste. Are you ready for a new furnace in Pittsburgh? Call Boehmer Heating & Cooling today!

One of the most important ratings in the heating industry is known as AFUE, which stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. It estimates the yearly average of heating output per energy input. It’s a percentage that indicates how much of the furnace’s energy is converted into heat, and how much is waste product exhausted outside the home. Some of today’s furnaces have AFUE ratings of up to 97%, which means that only 3% of the furnace’s energy is wasted—an incredible ratio. Most modern furnaces are AFUE rated at 90% and above, which is a drastic improvement from those produced just 15 years ago.

If you’re considering upgrading to a more efficient furnace, perhaps one with a much higher AFUE than your current system, you’ll also need to consider whether to choose gas or electric. You should take into consideration several factors: what type of energy source your current system runs on, the respective costs of gas and electric in your area, as well as your budget. If you’re already set up for a gas furnace, then perhaps it makes sense to stick with your setup and simply swap out the unit itself. If you previously had electric and you want natural gas, then you’ll need to make sure that you have a gas hook-up nearby that is available. While both types are efficient, electric furnaces tend to be more so, because they don’t need to convert a fuel, such as gas or oil, and they can theoretically operate at 100% AFUE.

Upgrading your furnace is a great way to maximize your savings over the long term and your comfort in the short term. For furnace installation in Pittsburgh, call Boehmer Heating & Cooling today! 

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Pittsburgh Heating Tip: Problems Affecting Your Boiler’s Performance

Monday, January 28th, 2013

While there could be many problems affecting your boiler’s performance, there are a few common reasons your boiler is not heating your home enough. Call the Pittsburgh heating specialists at Boehmer Heating & Cooling for all your boiler needs.

If there’s sediment build-up inside the boiler tank, this could affect the performance. That’s why it is important to have a professional flush your tank during routine tune-ups so that it prevents decreased water levels, which affects how well the boiler heats your home or hot water. Keep an eye on the pressure gauge as well so that you know when the water levels are abnormally low. Consult your owner’s manual if you aren’t sure how to read the pressure gauge. Call a repair technician if the readings are not normal. This could prevent a safety issue or damage to the system.

If there’s too much air in the lines feeding the radiators, this could also affect performance. If you hear hissing noises, there could be too much air inside the lines. In gas boilers, a bad thermocouple sensor is another issue that can cause low heating output. This sensor measures the gas flow, so if it is broken, then you won’t be getting enough heat. Call for repairs if you think this may be the issue.

Lastly, a leaking boiler tank will definitely cause performance problems since a water leak can affect the temperatures of the water. Signs of corrosion or rust on your tank should be looked at by a boiler repair technician.

Call Boehmer Heating & Cooling for heating repair in Pittsburgh!

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Pittsburgh Heating Tip: Decisions to Make Prior to Your Furnace Installation

Monday, December 10th, 2012

While summer and fall are excellent times to start planning a new furnace installation for your Pittsburgh area home, it’s never too early to start comparing the different models if you know that you will need to replace your furnace.

There are some decisions you will need to make prior to the furnace installation, such as what type of furnace you want to install and what features are most important to you. You can always call Boehmer Heating & Cooling for advice. Meanwhile, we’ve put together some things to think about as you start making these decisions.

You can begin making your decisions by monitoring your heating bills and paying attention to how well your current furnace is performing. Are you paying outrageously high heating bills? How did your furnace test during the annual tune-up?  If you decide that you want a high-efficiency system, you’ll need to know how to read and compare the AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency) percentages and what they mean for you.

It’s a good idea to begin speaking with your heating contractor about the different models on the market, and they should be able to help you select the most cost-efficient furnace for your home. You’ll also need to decide what type of fuel you want to use. For instance, if your home has access to natural gas, heating with a gas furnace is much easier than getting oil delivered, and if you switch over, you will also save space since there’s no tank involved.

Don’t hesitate to call Boehmer Heating & Cooling if you having any questions about installing a heating system in Pittsburgh!

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Pittsburgh Heating Guide: Is Your Furnace Not Blowing Enough Air?

Monday, October 15th, 2012

Have you ever been in your Pittsburgh house in the winter, listening to the furnace churn away trying to heat the house, but noticed that the whole place is still cold? If you checked the heating vents in this situation, you would probably find that there is not much air flow coming out of them, which is why you are still freezing.

It is entirely possible for the furnace to be burning away, producing hot air, without enough of that warm air ever actually being distributed through your home. So it continues to run and run, resulting in excess wear and tear on the heating system that will probably shorten its productive life, as well as keeping your whole home too chilly.

Why does that happen? There are a several common culprits for insufficient air flow from a furnace. Below is a list of the most frequent offenders, along with solutions for each:

  • Cause: Dirty or broken air filter. An air filter that has accumulated too much build up or is damaged will slow down air flow in a hurry.
    Solution: Clean or replace the air filter as necessary. This should be part of routine furnace maintenance in order to ensure efficient operation. Refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations to see how often you should check your air filter(s).
  • Cause: Damaged, corroded, broken or collapsed ductwork. Your ducts are like the road that warm air travels on. If the road is out, then no one can get through. Simple as that.
    Solution: Have a professional inspect and repair your ductwork. A routine ductwork check is also part of a professional’s annual maintenance inspection.
  • Cause: Blower fan not blowing enough. This can be caused by a loose fan belt, or a dirty motor.
    Solution: First, clean the blower fan and the area around it. It has to deal with a lot of air, so it naturally becomes dirty over time. If that doesn’t fix it, the fan belt probably needs to be replaced.

There are some other causes of improper furnace air flow, but those are the most common and easiest to detect and repair. If your heat registers are not returning any warm air at all, that is likely a different problem and you should call Boehmer Heating & Cooling to look at the system right away.

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McKeesport Heating Question: Why Is My Furnace Making Noise?

Monday, October 1st, 2012

At the beginning of each season, it makes sense to make sure your heating system is in good working condition.   Scheduling an annual inspection and filter change with Boehmer Heating & Cooling ensures a longer life for your McKeesport heating equipment.

At the first sound of trouble, checking the filter can often be a quick fix.  As air passes through the furnace, a filter picks out much of the dust and some heavier particles that have come along, gotten snagged and accumulated over time to create a solid blockage.

This filter can become clogged and force the furnace to work much harder to push the air through the blocked passage. Located just inside the front panel of the furnace, the filter is very accessible and easily exchanged for a clean one.  This should be the very minimum of regular maintenance and is simple enough to do that it can make anyone feel handy.

Heated air and cold air returning to and from the furnace travel through ductwork which is often metal.  The vibration of footsteps across the floor overhead or even of just the air movement through the ducts can loosen the fasteners and rattle the metal.

Internally, there are fans and lots of moving parts in the motor.  A noise coming from this area portends a repair of a more complicated nature and should have the inspection of a certified technician, a service easily provided by Boehmer Heating & Cooling.

With proper care and maintenance, your McKeesport furnace can last for quite a while, providing heat and comfort to your home.

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