Westland Heating & Air Conditioning Blog: Archive for February, 2015

When Furnace Replacement Is Your Best Option for Heating

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

If you have an older furnace providing your home with heating in Rocky River, OH, you may have wondered at what point you should have it replaced. You don’t want to spend the money to replace a heater if it can still provide you with more years of efficient and effective heat. On the other hand, you shouldn’t continue to spend money to repair a heating system on the decline that will cost more and more each year to run—and which may even become unsafe. At a certain point, you need to know when to stop with furnace repairs and instead have a new furnace put in.

The best way to determine if you should replace your aging furnace is to call the heating experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning. Our technicians will analyze your furnace and give you honest answers about the best path to take. Whether furnace replacement or continued repairs are the answer, you can trust to our trained staff to deliver whatever work you need.

Here are some guidelines to get you started thinking about when furnace replacement is the right choice:

Your furnace’s age

The first factor you should use as a basis for judging if it is time to replace a furnace is how old the system is. Each furnace has a manufacturer’s estimated lifespan, and if your furnace is at or above it, then you should give serious consideration to replacing it.

Heating bills

Are your heating bills continually climbing, no matter how many repairs you have done on the furnace? Then you probably have an inefficient system. Replacing a furnace that is wasting money each month is a much more cost effective option than simply letting it rattle on until it breaks down entirely.

Repair costs

At what point are repairs for heating system too costly? A good benchmark is that if any single repair for your furnace would cost half the price of replacing it, then you should opt for the replacement. If you spend more than $500 per year on repairs to keep the furnace running, then you should also have it replaced.

Loud operation

Is your furnace simply much noisier than it was in the past? This is often a sign that the components have worn down so much that you should have it retired sooner rather than later.

Before you make any decision regarding your home’s furnace, call on the Rocky River, OH heating professionals at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning. We handle numerous services for furnaces, including repairs and replacements. If you need a replacement furnace, our team will take care of the job of seeing that you have the best new unit to take the place of the old one.

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Why Radiant Heating Is Good for Allergy Sufferers

Monday, February 16th, 2015

One of the (few) benefits of winter is the end of allergies – but not for everyone. If you are someone who suffers from dust or pet dander allergies, controlling your allergies is a year-round challenge. Forced air heating systems can aggravate indoor allergies throughout the winter season, so if you are in the market for a new heating system, you may want to consider the benefits of radiant heat for your Bay Village home.

How Does Radiant Heat Work?

There are two types of radiant heating systems, and either one is a good choice for allergy sufferers. The two types are electric and hydronic, and choosing one option or the other will depend largely on your preferences. Electric radiant heating uses cables or cables in an electrically-conductive mat to generate heat; the cables or matting can be mounted directly to subflooring or set in cement to create a radiant slab. Hydronic radiant heating uses a boiler to create the hot water or steam, and flexible PEX tubing is installed directly onto subflooring or set in cement. Once the water or steam is at the correct temperature, it flows through the PEX tubing and heats.

Why It’s Good for Allergy Sufferers

The main problem with forced air systems is that they blow air around a space, which swirls dust around your living spaces. Even if you vacuum and dust regularly you can’t remove every speck of dust in your home, and each time a forced air system turns on, it kicks up any dust in your home. Additionally, if there is dust in your ductwork, it will be delivered directly to your living spaces and right to the allergy sufferers in your home.

Additional Reasons to Consider Radiant Heating

There are some other reasons to consider radiant heating for your home:

  • Comfortable, gentle heating – the nature of radiant heating is far gentler than forced air, resulting in a comfortable kind of heat.
  • More even heating – because forced air is somewhat blasted into your home, the feel can be uneven; this is not something that happens with radiant heating.
  • Easily zoned – because of the layout and structure of a radiant heating system, it is easier to create zones, which allows you to customize your home’s heating.

If you have allergy sufferers and need a new heating system, radiant heat may be the way to go. Call the experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today and schedule an appointment for our radiant heating service.

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Some of the Unusual Movies Released for Valentine’s Day

Saturday, February 14th, 2015

Hollywood has always tried to match movies up to the seasons to draw droves of viewers to the theaters: October is packed with fright-offerings, while the winter holidays skew toward warm and pleasing family films (as well as Oscar hopefuls). Valentine’s Day falls in an odd spot when it comes to the movie release calendar, however, since February tends to be a slower time for the film industry. The studios are as likely to slot strange movies that don’t fit anywhere else in their annual schedules into the Valentine’s Day weekend as they are films with powerful romantic appeal.

So, while the second weekend of February has featured hugely successful romantic comedies like Hitch, The Wedding Singer, and (of course) Valentine’s Day, some truly weird choices have debuted in this weekend as well. And a few have even gone on to tremendous success despite the bizarre match with the holiday. Here are a couple of the odder Valentine’s Day movie releases:

  • Dracula (1931): Yes, this Halloween perennial and the start of Universal Studio’s Classic Monsters actually came out on Valentine’s Day! But perhaps this makes some sense, as the Dracula legend has often received a “doomed lover” approach in the many years since Bela Lugosi made the aristocratic vampire a screen icon.
  • The Silence of the Lambs (1991): Does any film seem less appropriate for Valentine’s Day than this unnerving and sometimes very violent psychological thriller? What’s even more astonishing than the film’s release date is that The Silence of the Lambs eventually nabbed the Oscar for Best Picture, an almost unheard of occurrence for a movie released so early in the year.
  • Daredevil (2003): This Marvel comic adaptation featuring Ben Affleck as a blind superhero does contain a romantic subplot, but the stronger connection to Valentine’s Day may just be that Daredevil wears a bright red costume.
  • A Good Day to Die Hard (2013): The least successful of the Die Hard film franchise, this is an excellent example of a studio dropping a film into a weekend where it doesn’t fit in the hopes that it works as counter-programming. (It didn’t.)
  • Wayne’s World (1992): Now here is an example of counter-programming that clicked with audiences. This comedy based on a Saturday Night Live sketch turned into one of that year’s biggest hits and spawned a sequel.

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day with a trip to the movie theater, or you have your own special plans, everyone here at Westland Heating & Air Conditioning hopes you and your loved ones have a wonderful weekend.

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How the Expansion Tank Helps Your Boiler

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

There are a number of components in your boiler that help with both operation and safe functioning; one of these components is the expansion tank. The expansion tank is a small tank that extends off your boiler. While it may seem like a solitary object, the expansion tank works in conjunction with your boiler to help provide heat for your home. Understanding how an expansion tank works helps you understand how it helps your boiler.

This Inside of the Tank

The expansion tank isn’t an empty tank; inside, it is divided into two halves by a rubber diaphragm. The reason the tank divides the internal space into two halves is to allow pressurized air to reside in one half and excess water to flow into the other half. The tank attaches to your boiler via a valve located in the water half of the tank. The air side has to be correctly pressurized to counteract the pressure on the water half, so professional help is required for installation and repair.

How It Works

When your boiler starts a heating cycle, a great deal of pressure is created when heating the water, resulting in pushing the water up in the boiler’s water tank. This water has to go somewhere to keep the pressure from becoming too great inside the main water vessel, so it flows into the expansion tank. As the excess water flows into the expansion tank, the pressurized air on the other side helps keep the expansion tank balanced by providing a cushion of air. There is a relief valve on the expansion tank should there be an emergency and the pressure inside the expansion tank becomes too high.

How It Helps

Without the expansion tank, the excess pressure created at the start of a heating cycle would build inside the main water vessel. This can pose a series of problems, including pressure imbalances in your heating system, leaks and even ruptures, if the pressure is high enough. The expansion tank also offers added safety with its relief valve.

The expansion tank on your boiler is necessary for both function and safety. If you are seeing rust or leaking coming from your expansion tank, call the experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning and schedule an appointment for our professional boiler service in Avon.

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