Oasis Heating, A/C & Refrigeration Blog : Archive for October, 2013

How Heating Can Impact Air Quality

Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

When the snows fall and the weather turns cold, a good heating system can be your best friend. But furnaces and other forms of heating can impact more than the temperature: they can make a difference as far as indoor air quality goes too. Understanding how heating in Arlington, VA can impact air quality can help you avoid any problems in that arena.

The popular notion holds that heating systems dry out the air in your home, which is partially true. Air tends to be dry in the winter as a matter of course, and a heating system can only make it worse. Ideally, you want the relative humidity in the air to be somewhere between 35% and 50%. If it drops below that, you’ll feel it in your nose and sinuses: exacerbating respiratory problems and even resulting in nosebleeds in the worst cases. A humidifier can help the situation.

A more severe problem can take place if your heater isn’t regularly maintained. As dust and dirt build up in the internal components, the heater can affect indoor air quality. The contaminants will blow through your system as the furnace circulates the hot air. The particles can contain allergens and other unhealthy pollutants, which can make existing allergies worse and create irritation in the nose and throat when breathing. You can combat this by changing your air filter regularly, and by scheduling a regular maintenance session to clean the internal components in your heating system.

Because heating often involves the circulation of air, it pays to remember how it can affect air quality as well as temperature. Judicious maintenance from a qualified professional can help. In Arlington VA, heating questions can be solved by the professionals at Oasis Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Inc. Give us a call today!

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Fairfax, VA Heating Tip: Why Certain Rooms Are Cold

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

In a home with central heating, you expect the heater will warm up the whole house. You don’t want it to act like a space heater, a tiny unit that heats up one spot and nothing else. If you walk through your home and it feels like you’re using multiple space heaters—some not even working—to get your house warm instead of a powerful central system, then you may have a problem. The heater might be faulty, or the trouble could stem from defects in your house’s insulation. The uneven heating might be a simple mistake you can remedy in minutes.

We’ll walk you through some culprits that can create cold rooms in your home even with a powerful heating system at work. Call the Fairfax, VA heating experts today at OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc. if you need additional help with cold spots.

  • Blocked or closed vents: If you have centralized air providing heat, make sure that the vents in the chilly rooms are open. Vents near the floor might have accidentally become blocked by a rug or a shifted piece of furniture.
  • Thermostats issues: Zone heating in homes is a great way to conserve money, but it isn’t hard to set one of the multiple thermostats incorrectly. Make sure all the thermostats are programmed to the temperature you want. If one of the thermostats malfunctions, then you’ll need professional assistance.
  • Heat leaks: The cold rooms may have spots where valuable heat escapes outside. Check the seals around windows or any door to the outside. The trouble might be deteriorating insulation, which will need replacement.
  • Heater is too small: If you picked out your heater on your own without help, or relied on an amateur or inexperienced installer to pick it, you may have a heater too small to do the job of warming your whole home. Contact a reliable and respected HVAC company to inspect your house and determine its heat requirements. You may need to have the heater replaced.

Cold spots don’t have to mean an emergency—but they can warn you that something isn’t right. Don’t decide to “just live with it” and stay clear of the chilly rooms until spring. You deserve the best heating in Fairfax, VA you can get. Hunt down the problem, and if you can’t figure it out on your own, bring in OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc. to do the detective work—and any repair work afterwards.

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Fairfax, VA Heating Repair FAQ: Why Does My System Shut Down When I’m Still Cold?

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

“Why does my system shut down when I’m still cold?” That’s not an uncommon question from homeowners who may be frustrated by problems with their heating system. Here in Fairfax, VA, heating repair is an essential service; our winters may not be a cold as they are in New England, but we still get our share of chilly days and nights. So when your system shuts down prematurely or just never seems to make your home comfortable, it’s a cause for some concern. Before calling in a professional technician, you can educate yourself a bit on why a heater fails to do its job, and why your system shuts down when you’re still cold.

In a lot of cases, such a situation indicates a failure with the thermostat.  If you’ve placed your thermostat in a part of the house that gets a lot of sunshine, or it it’s near a warm draft, it may read the temperature as being warmer than it is. Your service technician can move it to a more “temperature neutral” part of the house to correct the issue. Alternately, the thermostat’s thermometer may be malfunctioning, in which case it’s reading the temperature as higher than it is.

Other issues may have little to do with the overall temperature, but rather with overloaded or overheating components within the system itself. Fan motors and the like often contain automatic shut-off switches, designed to turn the entire heater off when the motor itself starts to overload. This happens in order to protect the system from further damage. In any case, it may come along suddenly, cutting off your heating power before it warms your home sufficiently.

Regardless of the causes, if you’re asking “Why does my system shut down when I’m still cold?” then your heater is experiencing problems. The trained experts at OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc. can help. We handle Fairfax, VA heating repair issues of all varieties, and have served Northern Virginia for over fifteen years. Call us today to set up an appointment.

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Arlington, VA Furnace Repair Guide: Why Your Pilot Light Is Uneven

Monday, October 7th, 2013

If you have a gas-powered furnace, you have one of the most efficient heating systems available working for you. But even the most advanced furnace with the best maintenance will age and develop repair needs. Among the most common issues that we encounter with gas-powered furnaces are troubles with the pilot light. Pilot lights sometimes flicker or go out.

Because the pilot light is responsible for igniting the gas jets in the furnace’s combustion chamber, which in turn warm the air that is blown through ducts in your home, if it fails your furnace won’t work. We’ll list a few reasons for uneven pilot lights and what repair needs they may point toward.

A word of caution: although you can fix minor pilot light failures by simply re-lighting the flame, trying anything more complicated poses serious risks. Not only do you face the possibility of damaging the furnace’s interior, but there are safety hazards as well. Gas furnaces can expose you to carbon monoxide poisoning and other dangers. Leave the work to professionals. In Arlington, VA, the furnace repair experts at OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc. are on duty 24/7 to help you.

  • Low Air Intake: Flame requires oxygen to burn. If the air intake opening for the pilot becomes clogged, it will force the pilot light to struggle. This problem can go past a basic clog, however, and you may need an expert to examine the air flow.
  • Dirty burner: The burner and area around the pilot light can’t have a covering of grime over it, or else it will smother the flame. This is one reason that regular furnace maintenance is so important: keeping the parts of the furnace clean is vital for its operation.
  • Gas leaks: This is the most worrisome problem. The gas line into the furnace can sometimes lose its pressure, which will cause an inconsistent pilot light. But a leak is even more serious. If you detect the smell of gas while investigating a pilot light problem, shut off the gas immediately and call a professional.

If you allow a fluttering pilot light to go without repair, it may soon stop lighting at all, leaving you without heat. Don’t get stuck in the cold this winter in Arlington, VA: furnace repair is only a phone call away with OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc..

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