Westland Heating & Air Conditioning Blog: Archive for October, 2014

How a Boiler Heats Your Home

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

Boilers were the first whole-home heating systems, so they’ve been around for a long time. They are more reliable, durable and energy efficient today than ever before, and can be used with several kinds of heat distribution outlets. If you are interested in a boiler in Avon Lake, call the people who have been installing boilers for over 25 years: Westland Heating and Air Conditioning.

How a Boiler Works

Boilers are part of a hydronic heating system, which is a system that uses hot water or steam from hot water to heat your home. The two main types of fuels used with a boiler are natural gas and oil, but propane or solid fuels can also be used. The water in the boiler is held in a vessel and is heated to a temperature of 180 degrees. If the boiler is a steam boiler, the steam is captured in a small dome that sits on top of the vessel; the steam is then distributed throughout a piping system. If the boiler heats via hot water, the water is pushed through the piping via circulating pumps. There are two ways water is heated:

  • Firetube – metal tubes are submerged in the water tank and the hot gases from the burner are directed into the tubes, where they heat the water.
  • Watertube – water inside metal tubing is heated from the outside by the flames of the burner.

Distribution Outlets

There are a few heat distribution outlets that can be used with a boiler:

  • Radiators
  • Baseboard heaters
  • Hydronic floor heating

Benefits of a Boiler System

  • Comfortable heating –boiler systems heat homes gradually, which can be more comfortable and consistent than forced hot air.
  • Good energy efficiency – the average energy efficiency of today’s boilers is 89%, and can go as high as 95%.
  • No swirling dust – boilers are a closed heating system, so there is no need to worry about swirling dust, as there can be with forced air systems. This can be particularly helpful for allergy sufferers.

Installing a boiler in Avon Lake can be a great heating option for your home, but it’s important to hire professionals for installation. Call Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today and schedule an appointment with one of our installation specialists.

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Why Low Humidity Can Be a Problem for Your Home

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Low humidity can cause problems for you and your HVAC system. When the air inside your home is too dry, your home can sustain damage and your health can be compromised. One of the best ways to battle dry air is by installing a whole-home humidifier in Bay Village. With a home humidifier, moisture is added to your air seamlessly so each room can maintain a healthy moisture level. Professional installation is recommended for any upgrade you make to your HVAC system, so if you are ready to move ahead with an upgrade to your system, call Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today.

Problems Caused by Low Humidity

Here are some problems that can be caused by low humidity:

  • Damage to wood products – when the air in your home is too dry, anything made of wood, including flooring and furniture, can shrink and splinter.
  • Peeling paint and wallpaper – just as wood can dry, so can paint and wallpaper, causing peeling.
  • Increase energy usage in winter – humidity holds heat. When the air in your home is too dry, it won’t feel as warm as it should, which can cause you to raise your thermostat setting. According to the EPA, every degree you can lower your thermostat during winter can save you up to 4% on your monthly energy bills.
  • Health problems – dry air affects your physical health in a few ways. First, it can dry your mucous membranes, which can lead to bloody noses and sore throats. Second, too dry air can exacerbate allergic and asthmatic reactions. Third, dry air can make you more susceptible to illness.

Whole-home humidifiers help ensure that your indoor air doesn’t become too saturated by continually monitoring the moisture in the air.

If you are worried about dry air indoor air this coming winter, a whole-home humidifier in Bay Village may be the perfect option for you. Call Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today and schedule an estimate with one of our indoor air quality specialists.

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Why an Oversized Furnace Is Trouble

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

Bigger is not better when it comes to your heating installation in Westlake. In fact, installing a heating system that is too big for your home can cause multiple problems. Several factors must be considered to complete a proper heat load calculation, far more than just square footage, which is one of the many reasons it’s important to work with trained professionals when you need to install a new heating system. For over 25 years, Westland Heating and Air Conditioning has provided all kinds of heating services for our customers, and our technicians have the experience and training to ensure that you install a heating system that fits perfectly in your home.

Heating Load Calculation

As we discussed above, a number of factors need to be a part of your home’s heating load calculation:

  • Orientation
  • Daytime heat gain
  • Insulation levels
  • Types and number of windows and doors
  • Floor plan
  • Number of stories
  • Number of rooms
  • Number of occupants
  • Square footage

Without taking all these factors into consideration, you could easily miscalculate your home’s heating load and install a system that isn’t correctly sized.

Problems with an Oversized Furnace

The main problem with a system that is too big for your home is that the system will heat your home so fast it won’t be able to complete the full heating cycle. This can have several effects:

  • You’ll be uncomfortable – your home will heat up too quickly and potentially become too hot too fast; this can create discomfort.
  • Your system will short-cycle – short-cycling occurs when your heating system cycles on and off too much and too quickly. This can cause excessive wear-and-tear and prematurely age the components.
  • Your energy bills may go up – the constant on/off of short cycling uses more energy, especially at start-up; additionally, the extra operation will eat up energy quickly.

As we stated above, one of the best ways to ensure you install a heating system that properly fits your home is to work with a specialist. If you are ready for a new heating installation in Westlake, call Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today.

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What MERV Means and Why It’s Important

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

Your indoor comfort isn’t just about temperature; it’s also about the quality of the air you breathe. If you are experiencing issues with your indoor air quality, you can improve it with the addition of an air filtration system in Avon. Your HVAC system comes with a standard air filter, but the job of this filter isn’t to improve your indoor air; rather, this filter’s job is to trap dirt and dust before it can enter the various parts of your HVAC system. To find an air filter that will help you improve your indoor air quality, one of the first things you want to do is review its MERV rating. We’ll explain more about MERV below, but remember that for any upgrade to your HVAC system, be sure to call the people you can trust: Westland Heating and Air Conditioning.

What Is MERV?

MERV stands for minimum efficiency reporting value, and it is a scale that represents how effectively a particular air filter will operate. The scale ranges from 1 to 20, with 1 being the lowest. As an example, the standard filter that comes with your HVAC system usually has a MERV rating somewhere between 1-4. Here is an overview of MERV ranges and the particles that can be filtered within a specific range:

  • MERV 1-4 – large particles of dust and dirt (over 10 micrometers), fibers and large particles of pollen
  • MERV 5-8 – pollen, some mold spores, dust mites, pet dander,
  • MERV 9-12 – very fine dust and dirt particles, smaller allergen particles
  • MERV 13-16 – bacteria, droplet nuclei from sneezing, most smoke, some viral contaminants
  • MERV 17-20 – this is HEPA level, which can effectively trap over 99% of contaminants, including most biological contaminants (but not all)

The best MERV range for a home air filter is 5-12; air filter with MERV ratings higher than this can seriously restrict the air flow in your system, and cause mechanical problems. The best way to ensure you get the correct air filter for your home is  to consult with a specialist.

An air filtration system in Avon can give you the indoor air quality you want and need, but to ensure you are installing the correct type of air filter, it’s always best to work with a trained specialist. Call Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today and schedule an appointment with one of our indoor air quality specialists.

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Why a Boiler Might Be Your Best Choice for Home Heating

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

There are a lot choices for home heating these days, but not all will be a good fit for your home. Before choosing a heating system, it’s important to understand the basics of each system and what a system can offer you and your home. One option to consider is a boiler. Boilers have been around for many years, and today’s boilers in Rocky River offer the same reliable heating they have always been known for, plus the efficiency you expect from a new heating system. With professional installation from a trained and certified Westland Heating and Air Conditioning technician, you can be assured that your system will be installed correctly and efficiently.

How Does a Boiler Work?

A boiler is part of a hydronic system – a heating system in which heated water warms your home. Boilers need fuel to work, and the most common types of fuels used are gas and oil, although solid fuels can also be used. When your thermostat senses the temperature has gone below the set point, it sends a signal to the boiler, and the ignition process starts. Once the flame is lit, the water in the tank is heated to a specific degree, then released and pumped through the piping system (the same goes for steam). Distribution outlets for the heated water can be radiators, baseboard heating or hydronic floor heating systems. When the water cools, it returns to the boiler tank to be re-heated in the next cycle.

What Are the Benefits of a Boiler System?

There are several benefits worth considering when it comes to installing a boiler for your home heating:

  • Lack of dust – a boiler system does not circulate air; as such, there is no dust buildup in the system and dust doesn’t circulate around your home the way it can with a forced air system. This can be particularly important for allergy sufferers.
  • Quiet operation – except for the tick of the thermostat and the heating of the water, the operation of a boiler is very quiet.
  • Easy to establish zones – because of the piping system used to distribute the hot water, it can be very easy to establish heating zones.

Boilers are very reliable systems and can last for many years. Have questions about installing a boiler in Rocky River? Call Westland Heating and Air Conditioning and schedule an appointment with one of our installation experts.

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