Preparing Your HVAC System for Severe Weather

Kitchener Furnace Repair: 4 Ways to Prepare Your HVAC System for Severe Weather

With severe weather events on the rise, it is easy to be caught off-guard or surprised by the damage a storm can cause. Keep in mind that old adage: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In order to avoid a large bill for furnace repair in Kitchener, follow these simple yet effective suggestions for proactively protecting your HVAC system. 

1. Keep Your Furnace Footprint Free of Other Objects

We cannot prevent or predict the weather, but we can protect our assets in the event of a disaster. Imagine a perimeter of at least five feet surrounding the top, sides, and ground around your HVAC system. Clear away any tree branches, yard implements, or furniture that could be blown against the furnace during high winds and cause damage. The greater the distance between your furnace and other objects, the less likely your HVAC system will suffer a puncture or be crushed by something heavy in the chaos of a storm. 

2. Cut the Power

Another way to avoid paying unexpected bills for a residential furnace repair is to simply shut off the power to your furnace when you know a storm is coming. This will be temporarily uncomfortable for those inside the house, but it could save you a lot of money over time.

During a storm, electricity surges are common and can damage the circuitry of the HVAC system. If there is no power, however, there is no surge, and your furnace will continue operating smoothly after the storm has passed. Failure to do this may result in days or weeks without proper heating and cooling. In the aftermath of a storm, repair companies are often so backlogged that residents have to wait a very long time for their systems to be up and running again. 

3. Anchor Your Furnace Securely

Commercial furnace repair companies highly recommend that each furnace be fastened down to a concrete slab or securely fixed to an exterior wall. During high winds, even a heavy furnace can be lifted off the ground and jostled. This causes instability within the fan blades and wiring that make the furnace function. An unsecured furnace is not only a risk to your HVAC system but also may damage other property or people if it comes loose during a storm. 

4. Use a Surge Protector

While these are more commonly used to prevent electronics from shorting out, they are absolutely a wise choice for your furnace as well. A surge protector is able to sense unusual voltage increases and will shut off the machine if it believes the voltage is too high. This is especially crucial to have done ahead of time if you are not at home during the storm to turn off the power supply yourself. Power surges are not always predictable, so installing a surge protector takes away this element of surprise that could cost you money and inconvenience.

Prompt and Professional Furnace Repair in Kitchener 

There are a number of services we offer if you have the misfortune of needing your furnace repaired. The first thing we will do is visit your property and assess the damage. If you are experiencing an emergency, call our 24/7 crisis line and we can usually respond quickly. If residential furnace repair is what you need, we will send our technicians to your home to determine whether repair, replacement, maintenance, or tune-up is the best solution. If you need commercial furnace repair, let us guide you with advice on energy efficiency and the potential for capacity upgrades. Visit our website to schedule a service or request an estimate today. 

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.

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. 

Kitchener Heating Services: 5 Common Furnace Problems

Kitchener Heating Services: 5 Common Furnace Problems

There’s probably nothing worse than having your furnace break down during the winter. You might be thinking: “Is it chilly in my home, or is it just me?” Your furnace may even be running, but it’s not as efficient as it once was. If you’re looking for furnace repair in Kitchener, CJ Brubacher Ltd. can get your commercial building or home back to comfortable temperatures. If you’ve already checked your thermostat to make sure it’s working right and set correctly, here are some other common problems that can affect your furnace.

1. Dirty Filters  

If you haven’t changed the air filter in a few weeks, your heater won’t be getting enough airflow, which makes it work harder. Your heater may constantly cycle on and off, but your home won’t feel warm. Replace the filters to avoid shortening the lifespan of your furnace. You’ll save money on your utility bills, too. Plus, the air quality in your home will be better when you have fresh filters. Going forward, every time you pay your electric bill, check the filters to see if they should be replaced. You should probably replace them monthly, but it depends on how much you run your system.

2. Making Grinding or Scraping Sounds

If your furnace is making sounds, it could just be a belt that needs to be replaced, or it could be that the ball bearings are worn out. Either way, turn off your system immediately to prevent more damage. Save yourself the hassle of trying to repair your system and call CJ Brubacher for residential furnace repair.

3. Access Panel Left Open

Your furnace has an access panel for its internal guts. This is a safety feature. Your heater won’t operate if the panel is left open. If you tried to look in the furnace to check on something, you need to make sure you closed the panel afterward. It’s an easy fix that you can check before having to call in the professionals. If that doesn’t fix the problem, you may need to call us for repairs.

4. Furnace Doesn’t Blow Air

Does the furnace seem to be working, but not moving air? When the furnace doesn’t blow air, the fan belt is likely broken. Some homeowners can replace the belt, but it’s often easier to let a professional handle the job. We’ll take care of the details as quickly as we can to get your home back to normal.

5. Furnace Is Not Receiving Power

If the thermostat looks good but the heater isn’t operating, it could be an electrical issue. You should check to make sure that the furnace is plugged in. If it is plugged in but not working, check the breaker. If the breaker is switched off, flip it back to the on position. If the breaker is between on and off, switch it to off, then flip it to on. When the heater comes back on, watch to see if the breaker stays in the on position. It might be that the tripped breaker was an anomaly. If it trips again, it might be a problem with the wiring or with the breaker. Fortunately, the technicians with CJ Brubacher have electrical and HVAC licenses, so we can check your system and make repairs, regardless of what the problem is.

Of course, these aren’t the only problems your heater can have. For example, there could be a problem with the pilot light, or the burners could be dirty. For commercial furnace repair or home HVAC system maintenance, contact CJ Brubacher, Ltd. We have emergency services 24/7, so you can keep your home comfortable. Use our online system to schedule services.