DuAll Heating & Cooling Blog : Archive for January, 2014

Water Heater Problems Caused by Hard Water

Friday, January 31st, 2014

Hard water. You’ve probably heard the term before, but may not have known its exact definition. Basically, hard water is water with a high mineral content. The most common minerals found in hard water are calcite, gypsum (which both contain calcium), and dolomite (a magnesium mineral). Hard water does not pose any serious health risks to drink; but it does pose serious health risks to your plumbing and any appliance hooked to it, like your water heater.

Your water heater in Plainfield, IL, can suffer damage from hard water that can require repairs or perhaps even a replacement. We’ll look at some of the problems hard water can cause. When you encounter malfunctions with your water heater—no matter the cause—call DuAll Heating & Cooling right away. We have emergency services available for when those hot water failures come at the worst time.

Hard Water and Your Water Heater

When hard water is raised to a high temperature, as occurs inside the tank of a water heater, it releases its minerals, which then develop along surfaces as limescale. Hard water entering a water heater’s tank will soon start to lay down a layer of limescale along the tank’s interior. Limescale works as an insulator, and this means it will unbalance the heat levels inside the tank, restricting heat from escaping and leading to overheating. An overheated tank will begin to spring leaks and may even rupture.

Another place where hard water can cause trouble for a water heater is when it causes a build-up of calcites on the surface of the heat exchanger of a gas-powered unit. These calcites will block the movement of heat from the combustion gas to the water in the tank, which will severely limit the ability to warm up the water, leading to a loss of hot water around the house.

Finally, the calcite deposits will start to develop inside the pipes leading from the hot water heater (indeed, it will affect pipes of all kinds around the house). The more the calcite deposits grow, the higher the pressure inside the pipes as the available room shrinks. This will lead to leaking at pipe connections that will continue to grow worse unless the issue is addressed.

Make Sure Your Water Heater is Regularly Maintained

There are a number of ways to deal with hard water, but here we are specifically concerned with the damage done to your water heater. Regular water heater maintenance is the best way to discover if calcite deposits or limescale are causing damage to your heater, and technicians can eliminate the problem by removing the build-up, or if necessary, replacing the heat exchanger. Technicians will also take care of leaks before they cause damage.

At DuAll Heating & Cooling, we’ll make it our priority to provide you with the best water heater service in the Plainfield area.

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3 Causes of Ductless Heating System Repairs

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Ductless heating systems are energy efficient and allow you to tailor the temperature in individual areas of the home as you see fit, and even turn off the heat in parts of the house you aren’t using. Ductless heating systems are very efficient, but they break down just like any other heating system, and when they do, you need to be ready to correct the problem.

Here are 3 causes of ductless heating system repairs:

  • Broken fan. The fan is responsible in each indoor unit is what distributes the heat in your home. If it encounters problems, then the air flow will be severely restricted, and possibly halted entirely. Fan problems can stem from bent or broken blades, from a faulty fan motor, from a frayed fan belt, or from electrical problems with the system’s wiring.
  • Low refrigerant. Your ductless heating system is a heat pump, and it relies on cycled refrigerant to condition your air. When the refrigerant leaks out, the heating and cooling process is severely restricted, and may even halt the process entirely. You can spot leaky refrigerant by the formation of ice on the evaporator coils (the outside coils if you’re using the heating cycle).
  • Leaking water. Ductless heating systems can sometimes produce condensate, which gathers in a pan and is removed from the system via a drain line. If the drain becomes clogged or the drain pan is misaligned, you’re bound to get leaky water from the system. This can damage other parts of the unit, as well as creating a hazard around the heating system.

The good news is that, because ductless systems are modular, you’re probably not looking at a problem that affects the whole house. Once you spot the causes of ductless heating system repairs, call on the experts at DuAll Heating and Cooling to help. We can handle heating repair in Plainfield, IL and throughout the surrounding areas, and we’ll get your ductless system up and running again. Give us a call today!

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When Should I Schedule a Professional Duct Cleaning?

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

*DuAll Heating & Cooling no longer offers duct cleaning services. Take a look at our other indoor air quality services to find the best solution for your needs.

Design and construction of ductwork in a house aims to keep the ducts as hidden as possible so they don’t interfere with the look of a home. But this means that you won’t often have a good idea if your ducts are developing infestations of dust, dirt, hair, pollen, or biological contaminants. All of these intruders into your ducts will contribute to lowering your indoor air quality and placing strain on your HVAC system that can lead to early repairs and higher power bills.

So how do you know you should schedule duct cleaning? We’ll offer some helpful tips.

Hints that it’s time to schedule duct cleaning service

  • An increase in energy bills: Regardless of whether you have your AC or heater sending conditioned air through the ducts, you will find an increase in energy use if the ducts develop too much contamination. Dust along the ducts will significantly increase air resistance; it will also clog up the air filter and restrict air flow. This will make your HVAC system work harder and drain excess power.
  • More dust in your home: If regular dusting and cleaning in your home starts to turn ineffective—the dust returns almost immediately—and dust bunnies start growing in the corners, then you may have vents blowing out a build-up of dust from the duct walls.
  • A rise in allergy-like symptoms: A decline in indoor air quality because of dirty ductwork is most noticeable in people who have allergies to airborne pollutants. But these same symptoms can appear in anyone to some degree. Symptoms to look for resemble a low-level cold or flu, with congestion, eye and nose irritation, coughing and wheezing, and headaches. Indoor air quality is often quite poor indoors, and keeping your ventilation system clean is an important part of improving it.
  • You haven’t done it in over a year: Even without any of these other signs, you should have duct cleaning done if more than a year has passed since you last scheduled it. A year is enough time for dust to settle inside ducts. Get potential problems eliminated before they can cause worse problems.

Summon professional cleaners

Duct cleaning isn’t something you can take care of by leaning into your vents with a whisk broom and bottle of spray cleaner. Professionals with tools like the Roto Brush will need to take on this task. Experts like those at DuAll Heating & Cooling can do the job fast and effectively. Call us for your duct cleaning in Plainfield, IL.

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