Why Turn Off Your Furnace When the Warmer Weather Appears in Kitchener?

Why Turn Off Your Furnace When the Warmer Weather Appears in Kitchener?

One of the best things about spring is the warmer temperatures during the day. It’s not only more pleasant outside, but inside as well. You can open up your windows and let the fresh air in. Of course, spring weather is unpredictable. One day it might be sunny and bright, but the next day it could be rainy and cold. Turning off your furnace may seem like a gamble. Here’s what to know about turning off your furnace in the spring and who to call for residential furnace repair.

Why Should You Turn Your Furnace Off in the Spring?

Your heater won’t cycle on if you’ve set the thermostat lower than the inside temperature, so you might be wondering why it’s worth turning your heater off.

  1. You end up wasting money by running the pilot light when your furnace is on.
  2. You won’t inadvertently heat your home if the thermostat isn’t set right.
  3. You save money on furnace repair in Kitchener because your furnace takes the season off.

Shutting the pilot light off during the summer reduces your energy consumption and avoids putting stress on the components of your heater during the warmer months when you don’t need it.

How Do You Know When to Turn Off Your Furnace?

Don’t go by daytime temperatures to turn off your heater. Look at nighttime temps, when the air gets the coldest. Your home retains the daytime heat into the night, so it’s those early mornings where you may need the most heat. You want the outside temperature to be consistently above 7 to 10 degrees before turning off your furnace. If you have many north-facing windows or have a tendency to be cold-natured, you may need to wait until late May before you turn your furnace off for the season. Conversely, if you want to save on energy costs and don’t mind putting an extra blanket on your bed and wearing a warm sweater in the morning, you may be able to turn off your furnace earlier in the season.

How to Turn Your Furnace Off in the Winter

It’s not enough to switch off the thermostat. You need to turn off the pilot light to the furnace. You may also want to cut the main gas supply to the furnace. Don’t cut your gas supply to the water heater and stove. If you can turn off electricity to your furnace without shutting down the AC, do so. A professional technician can help you shut your furnace off safely.

Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Home Safer

Turning your furnace off is a personal choice. You don’t have to, but you should spend some time in the spring checking out your furnace and AC.

  • Check your furnace and AC filters. Replace them if warranted. Make a note on the filter to remember the date you changed it.
  • Check your carbon monoxide detector. If it uses batteries, put fresh ones in. Check the age of your CO monitor. Most should be replaced after 10 years. D
  • Check the area around the furnace. Remove any debris.
  • It’s also a good time to make sure your AC is ready for the warmer days. Have a service tech do an inspection of your furnace and AC to make your system last longer.

The biggest drawback to shutting off your furnace in the summer is remembering to relight the pilot in the fall. Fortunately, you can call the professionals to handle that job. While they’re lighting the pilot light, they can do a quick inspection to make sure your heater is ready to tackle the winter.

Contact CJ Brubacher Ltd. for residential and commercial furnace repair. We’ll make sure your furnace is operating at peak performance when you need it and doesn’t give you problems when you don’t.

Waterloo Heating Services: Is A Burning Smell In Your Furnace Normal?

Waterloo Heating Services: Is A Burning Smell In Your Furnace Normal?

The heating system in your home or a commercial facility is necessary for the colder winter months. While heat is essential for keeping people warm, it is also vital for the maintenance of your property. Without heat, pipes can freeze, windows can break, and so much more. If you do not have heat, contact an expert in furnace repair in Waterloo

However, not every apparent issue requires a technician. For example, many homeowners freak out when they smell something burning after turning on their HVAC system for the first time. Is the smell normal? Is it something to worry about? 

Is It Normal To Smell Burning?

A slight burning or hot smell does not always warrant a call to a residential furnace repair company. When a system is shut down for a while, like most systems are during the spring and summer months, a minor odour is expected as the system kicks back on.  

A stagnant system collects dust throughout. When the furnace kicks back on, it is burning the existing dust within the motor, heating elements, and other components. The burning that takes place after a while of inactivity is considered normal and nonthreatening. Still, that does not mean that all burning smells are natural. 

What Smells Are Not Normal?

Whether dealing with residential or commercial furnace repair, some odours are unnatural and require the attention of a seasoned expert. Some smells can indicate problems with specific components, and others can represent issues with entire systems. Homeowners must know the differences between these odours to explain the scent to a technician and determine the feasibility of a repair. Depending on the severity of the damage, a new system might be advisable. 

1. Rotten Eggs

Most HVAC systems use natural gas to operate. Natural gas is odourless, which is dangerous, so gas companies add mercaptan to it, producing a rotten egg smell. Without the rotten egg odour, people may not realize they have a gas leak, which can result in death or severe injury. 

If you smell rotten eggs when you turn on your furnace or HVAC unit, you should shut it off immediately and call the gas company or a licensed HVAC professional. A crew should arrive on the scene quickly to inspect and repair any issues.  

2. Mustiness

Sometimes, homeowners will turn on their furnace and notice a strong musty or mouldy smell coming from the vents. The odour usually indicates mould growth in the ductwork or evaporator coil. The vents and system will need to be cleaned to eliminate the odour. 

Unfortunately, depending on how bad the mould growth is, it often represents more significant problems. You might want to hire a mould remediation company to assess the rest of the property for mould. Sometimes, mould remediation is the only way to rid an entire property of mould risks. 

3. Electrical, Metallic, or Plastic

Electrical and metallic burning smells can indicate an overheated blower or another component. The best thing you can do is shut down the system and ask an HVAC technician for assistance. If you continue to run the system with malfunctioning parts, you risk damaging the heat exchanger or other critical components.  

The smell of burning plastic is not typical, and it can be hazardous. Plastic and similar materials can release fumes into the air that are toxic. If you smell plastic, shut off the HVAC system, open windows, and contact an HVAC specialist. 

Have you noticed strange odours coming from the vents in your home or facility? If so, contact CJ Brubacher Ltd. and schedule an assessment. The HVAC, Plumbing, and electrical specialists will send out a qualified team member as soon as possible.

Kitchener Furnace Repair: What Is That Noise?

Kitchener Furnace Repair: What Is That Noise?

If you’ve ever seen the movie “Home Alone,” recall the main character Kevin McCallister’s tumultuous relationship with the beat-up furnace in the basement. The knocking, pinging, groaning, ponging, and banging that the starring furnace made was enough to scare a young boy into running up the stairs at top speed. While your furnace is likely not calling out your name, it might be making unsettling noises. In most cases, all the furnace needs is a little TLC and deep cleaning, but sometimes it can be more serious. Find out why your furnace won’t stop making strange noises and who to call for furnace repair in Kitchener

Think About When You Hear the Noises Most 

The best way to determine what’s wrong with your furnace is to schedule a diagnostic inspection. Professional HVAC technicians will come to your home and complete a thorough checklist to assess the possible causes for the noises and any other issues that may require residential furnace repair.

However, if you’re on a waiting list or you haven’t made the call just yet, you might be able to determine the root of the problem by deciding when you hear the noises most. Pay close attention and try to determine during which window the furnace bangs, clangs, bings, or knocks: when it turns on or when it turns off. 

When the Furnace Turns On 

If the noises occur primarily when the furnace starts up and circulates air through the home, you might have dirty burners. 

Burners Can Accumulate Dust and Carbon 

Carbon builds up on burners from combustion as a simple byproduct of regular operation. When this happens, ignition is delayed, and gas builds up instead of immediately lighting the flame for the furnace. After some time, the gas will ignite, creating a small explosion in your furnace. If not corrected immediately, dirty burners can lead to furnace replacement and fire hazards. 

When the Furnace Turns Off

If the noises are noticeable when the furnace shuts off and the airflow stops, either the ductwork in the home or your furnace filter could be dirty, or both. 

The Furnace Might Have a Dirty Filter 

One of the least congratulated parts of adulting is remembering to change your furnace filter as directed. Depending on what kind of filter you have, it typically needs to be swapped out for a new one no more than every three months. Build-up can prevent airflow and causes your ducts to expand and contract, making popping noises. 

The Ductwork Could Be Dirty 

Even new homes can have debris or dirt in the ducts. During construction, errors could have been made, or even prior homeowners did not have ductwork vented correctly during a remodel. To ensure that dirty or blocked ducts are not the problem, a technician might recommend duct cleaning to prevent the popping noises from the expanding and contracting of metal when airflow is blocked.

Think About When You Didn’t Hear the Noises 

While it is typically your responsibility to change your furnace filter regularly, the internal parts of your furnace should only be cleaned by HVAC professionals. With regular maintenance and cleaning, the noises that keep you up at night should subside.

Just because there are dirty parts in your furnace doesn’t mean that you don’t keep a clean house. Furnaces naturally gather dust and carbon buildup as part of the regular operation. A diagnostic evaluation of your furnace will identify the noise source and provide you with options to remedy it. Services range from cleaning and lubing to residential and commercial furnace repair and replacement. 

For more information on professional HVAC services in Elmira, Waterloo, and the surrounding areas, contact CJ Brubacher Ltd. today. 

Elmira Heating Services: Why is the Furnace Leaking Water?

Elmira Heating Services: Why is the Furnace Leaking Water?

A water leak in your home can cause extensive damage. Therefore, if you see water coming out of your furnace, you may be alarmed. The problem may not be as serious as it seems at first. Depending on the type of furnace you have and how old it is, some condensation may be normal. When in doubt, however, you should call furnace repair in Elmira to have it checked out. To help you narrow down the possible cause and determine whether it is anything to worry about, here are some common reasons why a furnace may leak water. 

1. Issue With the Furnace Humidifier

In the winter, the air becomes drier because cold temperatures prevent water from becoming vapour. Due to the hot air that your HVAC system forcefully circulates, the relative humidity inside your home may decrease even further during the winter. This can cause problems such as dry skin or nosebleeds. To prevent this, some furnaces come equipped with their own humidifiers to keep the air moist and comfortable by evaporating water and circulating the vapour throughout your home. A problem with the humidifier, such as a crack, may cause a leak requiring residential furnace repair to correct and prevent further damage to either the humidifier or the furnace itself. 

2. Flue Pipe of Incorrect Size

Furnace operation can cause condensation. If your furnace is over 15 years old, or it is a newer furnace of standard efficiency, the condensation should be minimal, and you should not see any water leaks. If there is water leaking, it may mean that the flue pipe that directs exhaust from the furnace outside is allowing water to drain back into the furnace because it is the incorrect size. 

3. Clog of the Furnace Condensation or Internal Drain System

If you have a newer, high-efficiency furnace, one of the things that makes it different from a standard furnace is that when the natural gas burns, condensation is naturally produced as a byproduct due to the cool exhaust. These furnaces come with a system intended to allow the excess condensation to drain out of the furnace. There is usually a PVC pipe installed in the furnace that empties into the drain built into your basement floor. If there is a clog in either the floor drain or the condensation pipe, it may cause the water to leak out in another direction. 

4. Break of the Condensate Pump or Condensation Line

While most buildings with basements have a drain in the floor, not all of them do. If your building does not, it does not necessarily mean that you cannot have a high-efficiency furnace. It just means that you need another method of getting the condensation outside. A condensate pump is a mechanical device that removes the condensation to a location exterior to the building. Like other mechanical devices, a condensate pump may occasionally break down. If it does, the condensation from your furnace has no acceptable outlet. Therefore, you may find it leaking out in unexpected places. 

If you do have a floor drain, you probably have a condensation line emptying into it from your furnace, assuming that it is a new, high-efficiency model. In addition to clogs, condensation lines may crack or break. If this happens, it is another means by which your furnace may start leaking water. 

Why You Should Call CJ Brubacher for Furnace Repair in Elmira

While it is normal for some furnaces to produce condensation, they are usually designed to control the water and direct it appropriately. If your furnace appears to be leaking water from an inappropriate source, you may require residential or commercial furnace repair in Elmira. Our technicians are fully licensed, experienced, and available for emergency calls 24 hours a day. Find out more about our heating services.

4 Signs You Need To Repair Your Home Furnace in Waterloo

4 Signs You Need To Repair Your Home Furnace in Waterloo

Stay warm this winter and keep your home safe with a fully maintained furnace. Check out these four signs that it’s time to contact CJ Brubacher for residential furnace repair in Waterloo. Ignoring these issues could cause your furnace to fail, so work with a local expert for efficient maintenance and repair services.

1. Your Furnace Isn’t Heating Properly

This sign can be caused by a number of issues, but all mean it’s time to request furnace repair in Waterloo. If your furnace isn’t heating properly, then a technician will check for one or more of these components:

  • Thermostat
  • Blower motor
  • Pilot light
  • Gas lines
  • Wiring
  • Air ducts

A faulty or incorrectly adjusted thermostat won’t tell your furnace to turn on. This may be the issue if you never hear your furnace turn on or attempt to turn on. It could also be caused by faulty wiring.

A damaged blower motor won’t force the air through your air ducts. This can be caused by a clog in the system, a wiring issue or damaged mechanical components.

The pilot light is either always lit or lighted with an electric starter, depending on the model and age of your furnace. Compromised pilot lights won’t light the gas released in your furnace. This may be the issue if your blower is running but the air is cold or you smell gas as your furnace runs.

Air ducts need to be clear of debris to allow warm air to travel throughout your home. If a particular room is especially cold, or you don’t notice any air coming out of a particular duct, it may be time to schedule a cleaning service.

2. You Hear Strange Noises From Your Furnace

Unusual noises may be the first sign that a component is about to break. Treat any unusual furnace sounds serious and you may avoid a sudden furnace failure. Here are some sounds that can point to furnace damage or excessive wear:

  • Scraping
  • Squealing
  • Grinding
  • Humming
  • Rattling

3. Your Furnace Is Old

A furnace should last at least 15 years as long as it’s properly maintained. Some furnaces last 30 years or more. Most professionals recommend replacing a furnace after about 15 to 20 years. Here are some factors that affect how old is too old for your furnace:

  • Maintenance record
  • How often it is used
  • Manufacturer
  • Whether it’s sized appropriately for your home

If your furnace is over 20 years old, it’s likely less efficient than modern alternatives. Its effective lifetime may also be drawing to an end, and a planned replacement can be more affordable and less stressful than a middle-of-the-night emergency call.

4. Your Heating Costs Are High

A damaged or older furnace is likely going to be less efficient than a modern, well-maintained one. An inefficient furnace may be costing you more in monthly bills than a replacement furnace would cost.

Schedule an annual maintenance service to learn more about your furnace. As your furnace ages, ask about the efficiency difference between new and older models. You may reach a point where a replacement unit is a cost-effective solution.

You don’t always have to fully replace a furnace to enjoy reduced energy costs. A clogged air filter or blower motor can cause your heating system to work harder than it needs to. A simple service call may be all you need to lower your bills and enjoy more years out of your furnace.

Request Furnace Repair in Waterloo With CJ Brubacher

From a blower motor cleaning to a full furnace replacement project, trust CJ Brubacher with your HVAC needs in the Elmira and Waterloo region. Contact us to schedule residential or commercial furnace repair or inspection services for peace of mind.

Waterloo Furnace Repair: What Is a Ductless Heating System?

Waterloo Furnace Repair: What Is a Ductless Heating System?

Maintain comfortable indoor temperatures all year with a ductless heating system. Also known as a mini-split, this dynamic option can be a great choice for your cooling and heating services in Waterloo. Learn more about the pros and cons of a ductless system today to see which type of heating system is right for you.

What Is a Ductless Heating System?

A ductless system uses a heat pump for residential heating and an air conditioner for residential cooling services. They use a small outdoor unit and one or more wall-mounted indoor units.

They’re named ductless systems because they don’t rely on the ducting in your home. Instead, they have a line that directly connects the exterior unit with the interior ones. The same wall-mounted unit can send both hot and cool air throughout your home. Explore the pros and cons of this type of system to see if it’s right for your home.

Con: Upfront Investment

If you’re just looking for a straightforward heater or air conditioner, a ductless system can be more of an investment. Unlike a window air conditioner or an electric heater, these systems require professional installation, which adds to the cost of installation.

Depending on your situation, however, a ductless system can be a better long-term investment. You may save more on your monthly energy bills thanks to the energy-efficient design of these systems. Discuss pricing with a local contractor to see whether a ductless heating system or other option is more affordable for long-term heating.

Con: Fuel-Based Backup May Be Necessary

Winters can be particularly cold in Waterloo. While some ductless heating systems are designed to be used in subzero temperatures, you’ll notice a drop in energy efficiency in cold temperatures. Extremely cold temperatures may require a backup heat source, particularly if your home isn’t properly insulated.

Pro: Quiet Operation

Ductless systems are quieter than most traditional air conditioners and heating systems. Wall units in one or more rooms of your home or commercial space tend to be inconspicuous. Simply set the desired temperature and many mini-split systems will switch between cooling and heating as necessary to maintain comfortable indoor temperatures.

Compare the sound of a furnace and blower or window air conditioner units with a ductless system. The quiet fan can discretely blow cool air around a room to keep you comfortable.

Pro: Improved Energy Efficiency

Ducted systems lose energy as the air travels through the ducting. The air in your home warms up, or cools down, as it travels through the ductwork, which caused a central furnace or air conditioner to work harder to maintain temperatures throughout your home.

The efficiency of a ductless system helps you save money over time. They’re particularly efficient when the outdoor temperature isn’t extreme. A multi-speed system allows ductless units to speed up or slow down the system. This design uses less energy than a central air system and can avoid the additional starting and stopping issues that can wear out blower motors.

Pro: Compact Design

Compare the streamlined size and design of a ductless system. The sleek unit doesn’t take up room in your utility room or floor but can be installed on the wall out of the way.

A ductless system is particularly compact in design for new residential or commercial constructions. Consider this residential or commercial heating solution to avoid investing in any ductwork. A building without any ductwork has significantly more space in the basement or crawlspace.

Work With CJ Brubacher To Install a Ductless System

Reach out to a local HVAC specialist to learn more about ductless heating services in Waterloo. Request an estimate today to see how you can afford the right heating and cooling system to save you money and fit your lifestyle.

Why is Your Furnace Blowing Cold Air In Elmira

Why is Your Furnace Blowing Cold Air In Elmira

Perhaps the only thing more frustrating than your furnace not working at all is when it blows cold air instead of hot. Not only is this inconvenient but, in a northern region such as Ontario where winter temperatures can dip to extremes, it can also be dangerous. Excessive cold can lead to frostbite or hypothermia and cause pipes to freeze, and the furnace blowing cold air could compound the problem.

There are several reasons why your furnace may be blowing cold air, and fortunately, some have simple fixes. Others, however, require professional furnace repair in Elmira. Here are some common issues that may be causing the problem.

1. Is the Thermostat Set Correctly?

The thermostat is the control by which you can turn the HVAC unit on and off, switch between heating and air conditioning, and set the desired temperature. If your furnace is blowing cold air, check the thermostat before you call for residential furnace repair. It may be that the thermostat has been set to the wrong temperature, or it may still be set to the air conditioner rather than the heater. If you have determined that the thermostat has been set correctly and the problem still persists, then something else is causing it. However, it still may not be time to call for furnace repair in Elmira, at least not yet.

2. Has the Furnace Had Time To Heat Up?

If you have ever boiled water in a kettle or saucepan, you know that it doesn’t happen immediately. The water needs time to absorb the heat and reach the necessary temperature. A furnace heats air rather than water, but the same principle applies.

Do not panic if your furnace does not immediately start blowing hot air if this is the first time you are turning it on for the season. Chances are, the furnace is working properly but just hasn’t had enough time for you to start feeling the effects. Wait for up to 15 minutes and then check the furnace again. If it still isn’t blowing hot air after having had plenty of time to warm up, you may have a bigger problem that requires professional furnace repair in Elmira.

3. Has the Furnace Overheated?

A furnace can overheat for several reasons. If it is over 15 years old, it may be that the parts have just worn out, causing mechanical failures. If some parts of your furnace are worn out, those remaining that are still in good condition cannot function the way they are supposed to. It may also be that moving components, such as the blower, have become clogged up with dirt and debris. This can happen if the furnace filter hasn’t been changed or cleaned often enough.

An overheated furnace will not keep blowing cold air for very long. Sooner or later, it will shut off altogether. This is because of a built-in safety mechanism that causes the furnace to shut down in the event of overheating to guard against hazards such as fires or carbon monoxide leaks.

4. Is There a Problem With the Gas Supply?

If the furnace is not receiving sufficient fuel, it may only blow cold air. As with overheating, the furnace is designed to shut down completely in the event of an issue with the gas supply. This could be an issue with the gas valve that prevents the fuel from reaching the furnace. Perhaps the problem is that the amount of fuel that your furnace is receiving is not adequate.

Call Us for Furnace Repair in Elmira

For nearly 100 years, CJ Brubacher Ltd. has provided quality, thoughtful service in Elmira and the surrounding areas. We employ talented technicians and are on call 24/7 to answer emergency calls. We provide both residential and commercial furnace repair. Find out more about our heating services.