Oasis Heating, A/C & Refrigeration Blog : Archive for December, 2017

There’s Ice on My Heat Pump—Is This a Bad Sign?

Thursday, December 28th, 2017

If you know even a little bit about the operation of the heat pump that keeps your household cool in summer and warm in winter, you’ll understand that the outside unit needs to absorb heat from the ambient air and carry it indoors in order for it to work in heating mode.

Should you notice that there is ice developing along the outdoor cabinet of the heat pump, it may worry you. Is this normal during the winter?

The answer is, confusingly, both yes and no. But we will quickly unconfuse you below:

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The Difference with Quality Professional Furnace Installation

Tuesday, December 26th, 2017

We understand that homeowners are on the hunt for ways to save money, especially at the end of the year when finances often get a bit tight and everyone is starting to plan for the year ahead. Unfortunately, the quest to find bargains on services often ends up backfiring.

For a service like the installation of a furnace to handle the heating for the rest of the winter, you never want to go to any contractor who isn’t qualified and experienced to handle the job. And don’t even think about taking on furnace installation as a “do-it-yourself” experiment!

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Why You Should Upgrade to a Programmable Thermostat

Thursday, December 21st, 2017

What kind of thermostat do you have in your house to control the HVAC system? If it’s a manual one that uses sliders or dials, or a no-frill digital model that can only raise or lower the temperature, then we need to talk. It’s time to upgrade to a digital programmable model—especially if you have updated your HVAC system at some point during the past few years. There are many benefits that come with replacing an old thermostat with an advanced model. Here are a few:

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Benefits of Radiant Heating Installation

Monday, December 18th, 2017

Radiant heating is an unusual and efficient means of warming your house. It consists of pipes full of warm water or electrical coils directly beneath the floorboards of your house, warming the furnishings (and people) through the direct transfer of energy. When it comes to heating your home in Arlington VA  you have a lot of options, but radiant heating offers a number of advantages to offset the cost and effort of installation. Here’s a brief rundown of the benefits of a radiant heating system.

  • Efficiency. Radiant heating doesn’t rely on forced air to warm the room. It transfers energy directly, which means it does its job much more efficiently than forced air furnaces. You can save a considerable amount of money each month on heating bills, helping to offset the cost of installation.
  • Comfort. Unlike forced air furnaces, there are no drafts or cold spots to contend with with radiant heating. That tends to create a more comfortable environment overall, as well as preventing the spread of dust and allergens (which forced air furnaces are notorious for).
  • Cost Saving. Radiant heating systems have comparatively few moving parts, which means they require repairs less often on the average than other types of furnaces. Perhaps even more importantly, they can last a long time with proper maintenance, which not only extends the benefits of your investment, but can improve the resale value of your home when the time comes to sell.

The benefits of radiant heating installation are considerable, though it’s not for everyone. When it comes to heating, Arlington VA residents need to match their homes and their circumstances with the heating system that’s right for them. When making that decision, it helps to have trained experts on your side. Here at OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc. we understand radiant heating systems, as well as a plethora of other heating options for your home. We can discuss your choices with you, the set up an installation plan that meets your needs. If you want to see the benefits of radiant heating installation, then pick up the phone and give us a call today!

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Why Most Modern Furnaces Use Electronic Ignition

Monday, December 18th, 2017

If your furnace uses a standing pilot light, you may not know it, but you’re behind the times. Standing pilot lights are being steadily phased out as more modern electronic ignition systems come into play. There are many reasons for this. Standing pilot lights are notorious for going out at the drop of a hat, mostly due to their being almost completely unprotected from air flow in the house. They are also surprisingly massive energy wasters. Even a small flame can waste quite a bit of fuel if it is on 24/7. Read on to find out how electronic ignition fixes these issues, and why you may want to consider upgrading.

Intermittent Pilot

The first kind of electronic ignition devices we’re going to look at is the intermittent pilot. As the name suggests, this is an ignition system that still uses a pilot light, but not all the time. When the thermostat tells the furnace to turn on, the intermittent pilot opens a gas valve and creates a small spark. This spark is generated by an electrode that is installed close to the burners. It is this spark that ignites the burners and starts the system.

The intermittent pilot solves a lot of the issues that plagued the standing pilot. No more worrying about the pilot light blowing out, or failing because of a bad thermocouple. Its sensors are more accurate, it doesn’t waste nearly as much energy, and it is relatively low maintenance. If something does break, it will be a bit more expensive to fix due to the more complicated nature of the system. However, it is worth it for all the benefits it provides.

Hot Surface Ignition

This type of electronic ignition relies on a heating filament, rather like a light bulb filament, to light the burners. Just like the intermittent pilot, the hot surface ignition system is not on the whole time. When the heating system receives the command to turn on, the hot surface ignitor runs an electric current through the filament installed under the burners. This filament gives off enough heat to ignite the gas and start the system. Just like lightbulbs, heating filaments can burn out over time. They are relatively easy to replace, though.

If you’d like to know more, call OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc. We provide furnace installation throughout Alexandria.


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Some Signs That You Need Water Heater Repairs

Thursday, December 14th, 2017

Your home must have a working water heater throughout the year, but it’s especially inconvenient to have your water heater fail on you during the winter. Cold days without hot showers? That can feel pretty miserable.

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How to Prepare Your AC for the Winter

Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

When you look at the headline of this post, you might wonder if we’ve gone a touch crazy. Temperatures are dropping and it’s already December! Why would you need to worry about preparing the air conditioning system for this kind of weather?

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What Kind of Issues Lead to Subpar Furnace Performance?

Sunday, December 10th, 2017

Furnace problems always arise at the least convenient times. We need reliable heating to keep our Fairfax, VA homes toasty and comfortable when the snows start to fall. And they don’t always need to involve a full breakdown either. In some cases, problems can lead to subpar performance, where the furnace continues to function but requires a lot more time and energy to do its job. What kind of issues lead to subpar furnace performance?

Some of it comes down to plain old-fashioned dust and build up. If you don’t have your furnace routinely maintained, then dust and dirt will accumulate on it. That increases friction on moving parts, as well as coating the pilot light and other key components with grime that might affect the furnaces performance. It will thus work harder in order to do the same basic job, and your monthly costs will go up as a result.

Similarly, a leak in the ducts, or a problem with one of the burners or another component will slowly leech your furnace’s productivity. Say, for example, that your furnace uses six burners. If one of those burners is faulty, the remaining five should still be able to generate enough heat to cover your home. Only they will have to use more fuel to do so and will take longer to heat your home. Again, this will end up costing you more in terms of your monthly heating bills, and the issue will likely get worse the longer the faulty component is left unrepaired.

Finally, sometimes simple age is enough to create a subpar performance. An older furnace not only has years of wear and tear to deal with, but may not be able to take advantage of new advances in technology, leaving it less efficient than more contemporary models.

If you think you are getting sub-par performance from your furnace, the next step is to contact a qualified professional to address it.  Give OASIS Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Inc. a call to set up a Fairfax, VA  furnace service today!

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What the Color of Your Furnace’s Pilot Light Means

Thursday, December 7th, 2017

Now, during the early part of heating season, is when you should pay special attention to the operation of your gas furnace. You want to detect any early indications of malfunctions so you can have them repaired before the serious cold weather strikes. After all, you know that when a furnace breaks down, it will probably happen on the coldest day of the year!

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Problems with Your Electric Furnace? Let’s Look into It

Tuesday, December 5th, 2017

Not every house has a connection to a natural gas line, and some homeowners prefer the safety of only relying on electricity to power appliances. For these homes, an electric furnace is always a good alternative source for warmth. Along with their flexibility, electric furnaces tend to have longer service lives than gas furnaces and they cost less upfront to install.

No furnace can be 100% free of problems, however. In this post, we’re going to look at what you can do if your electric furnace begins to lose its heating ability—or it stops heating altogether.

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