Category Archives: Indoor Air Quality

Helpful Air Conditioning Tips for Spring in Massachusetts

Warmer weather has arrived here in Massachusetts. Summer weather is just around the corner. You need to take advantage of the mild spring weather to get your air conditioning ready for the hot weather ahead. Use these air conditioning tips for spring in Massachusetts.

Tips for Getting Your A/C Ready

air conditioning unit
Source: iStock.com/Maudib

Here are five tips for getting your A/C ready for summer:

  1. Clear trash, debris, and weeds from around your outside condensing unit. It needs clear airflow to work efficiently. Over the autumn and winter, leaf debris can accumulate around its base. As spring starts to blossom, weeds have a tendency to sprout up everywhere. Remove it all.
  2. Wash the exterior condensing unit off with a hose. If there is caked grime, a mild solution of water and dish detergent should remove it. Do not use a pressure washer on the outside unit as the pressurized water can damage the fins and other components.
  3. Change your air filters. This is actually something you should do every month. To cool your house efficiently, the A/C blower needs a steady supply of air. A clogged filter restricts air flow. Plus, it allows dust and debris to get into the A/C equipment and blow throughout your house, lowering your indoor air quality significantly.
  4. Clean your vents and registers. Even with regular air filter changes, some dust is going to make its way into the air ducts. It will often settle on the fins of vents and registers. Spring is the perfect time to clean those fins.
  5. Schedule an annual maintenance visit. Before you turn the A/C on for the season, make sure it is in good shape. An annual service call from a trained A/C technician will do the trick. This will keep the A/C running efficiently, minimize repair needs, and extend the life of the equipment.

These air conditioning tips for spring will keep you comfortable in the coming months of summer. If you need to schedule an annual maintenance visit for your A/C, contact us here at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. We serve the Route 495/128 are of Massachusetts.

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Don’t Forget to Spring Clean Your HVAC System

Winter is gone. The warmer winds of spring have arrived. It is the perfect time to get some spring cleaning done. If you are getting your spring to-do list together, don’t forget to spring clean your HVAC system.

Your spring cleaning HVAC list

replacing air filter
Source: iStock.com/simazoran

Use this simple checklist to get your HVAC systems ready:

  • Have a professional do routine maintenance. Your HVAC equipment needs annual maintenance to keep it running efficiently. This helps reduce repair costs and prolongs the life of the system.
  • Check and replace your air filters. This is something you should do every month. However, if your A/C is separate from your heating, you may not have checked the A/C filter since last fall. Now is the time to do it.
  • Make sure the drain hole is not plugged. Under your inside A/C unit, you will find a drain hole where moisture escapes. If that hole gets plugged, it could overflow causing damage to your home.
  • Clear any debris or dirt from around outside units. Dirt, fallen leaves, weeds and trash can clog the airflow going into and out of the unit. It is also important to make sure no plants are growing too close. Airflow is critical for it to run efficiently.
  • Clean vents and registers. It is very easy for dust and other particulates to cling to the fins on vents and registers. You can use a soft cloth or brush to remove any built-up dust. This helps keep air flowing.
  • Have your ductwork cleaned. If you see a shower of dust coming out of your vents when your heating or cooling turns on, you need to have your duct work cleaned. This will help improve indoor air quality year round.

Spring cleaning your HVAC system will only take a short amount of time. However, it is time well spent in making sure it will work as the warmth of summer arrives.

If you need an HVAC professional to check your HVAC system, contact us here at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. We proudly serve our neighbors in the Route 495/128 area of Massachusetts.

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Why Is Condensation Forming on the Windows of Your Massachusetts Home?

You’ve seen it often, but do you know what causes condensation on home windows and sliding glass doors? Even energy-efficient windows form condensation, but they’re not to blame. When high indoor humidity comes into contact with a cooler surface, such as cool glass, water vapor in the air condenses on the cooler surface. If you want to rid your home of condensation and mold risks, alleviate high indoor humidity by modifying activities and using practical indoor air quality (IAQ) upgrades.
Read More Why Is Condensation Forming on the Windows of Your Massachusetts Home? >>

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Allergy-Proof Your Home With These Tips

Do you suffer from a stuffy nose or itchy, watery eyes even when spending time indoors? If you have indoor allergies, take a few steps to allergy-proof your home and help you breathe easier year round.

Read More Allergy-Proof Your Home With These Tips >>

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What’s the Best Way to Heat and Cool Your Home Efficiently?

The heating and cooling systems in the average home typically use about half of the energy consumed each month. To heat and cool your home efficiently and reduce unnecessary spending, it’s important to keep the HVAC system in good working condition with regular maintenance. What specifically should you focus on?

Read More What’s the Best Way to Heat and Cool Your Home Efficiently? >>

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Do You Know How to Change Your Home Air Filter?

Replacing your home air filter regularly improves HVAC system performance and efficiency, as well as safeguarding indoor air quality. Monthly home air filter changes are well within the skill set of any homeowner and pay you back with lower operating costs and enhanced indoor comfort.

Read More Do You Know How to Change Your Home Air Filter? >>

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Minimize Indoor Air Pollution So You Can Continue to Breathe Easy

Indoor air pollution is a concern in many Massachusetts homes, especially in the middle of winter, when ventilation is minimal and families spend more time indoors. Though the presence of pollutants may seem unavoidable, there are a number of simple ways to minimize indoor air pollution.

Read More Minimize Indoor Air Pollution So You Can Continue to Breathe Easy >>

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Avoid Attic Problems by Keeping Up With Insulation, Ventilation and Sealing

Although the attic is an easy space to overlook when it comes to the structural components of your home, energy bills and indoor comfort, attic problems can undermine each. It’s worth spending a little time exploring ceilings and the attic to learn the integrity of this space and remedy any issues that exist.

Read More Avoid Attic Problems by Keeping Up With Insulation, Ventilation and Sealing >>

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Winter Allergies That Can Affect Massachusetts Homeowners

Although the spring season gets a lot of attention for the proliferation of allergies, the truth is that winter allergies are nothing to — pardon the pun — sneeze at. There are a number of elements that can irritate the respiratory system of someone suffering from allergies, and your best defense is learning some of these and how to control them.

Mold

mold2Mold is caused by an accumulation of moisture that can irritate the respiratory system of anyone, but especially those who already suffer from respiratory issues. The winter season increases the likelihood of moisture due to snow, rain, and morning dew. To keep the growth of mold under control, you must be resilient in drying susceptible areas like the bathroom, kitchen and basement. Also remove any standing water from outside your home.

Carpets

Carpet is notorious for holding in a variety of pollutants, such as dust, dust mites, pet dander and other allergens. These are spread around whenever someone walks across the carpet, and because of the increased foot traffic that your home may be subject to during the colder winter weather, the situation could be worse than normal.

There are two solutions here as well. If possible, replace the carpets with laminate, wood or tile flooring. These options don’t hold pollutants in place and are easier to clean. Or, if you don’t wish to part with carpet, purchase a vacuum cleaner equipped with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter for the best results.

For more expert advice on dealing with winter allergies, or if you have any other concerns related to home comfort, please contact the friendly professionals at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. We’ve been serving the Route 495/128 area of Massachusetts since 1928.

Image via Shutterstock.com

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Home Heating on the Fritz? Focus Your Troubleshooting on These 3 Areas

Home heating systems can stop working for a wide range of reasons, and none of them are welcome on a cold winter’s night. Some system breakdowns may be relatively easy to fix yourself. When you can’t fix it, any additional information you can pass on to a qualified service technician may help speed repairs. Start troubleshooting heating in these three primary areas.

Inspect Air Filters

air filterAir filters frequently get dirty or clogged, and not just the filter inside the furnace. Check the furnace filter every month, and change it at least once or twice a year.

The cold air intakes and heat vents generally also have filters. Look at each individual filter; remove any large debris that may be caught in them, and change the filters if they’re clogged with dust. Ensure that all registers are fully open.

Confirm the Thermostat Works

Programmable thermostats need batteries to work properly, and they may not function properly if the battery is low. Check that the display lights properly and doesn’t show any battery warnings. Next, locate the breaker associated with the thermostat and make sure it’s turned on.

If you want to go into advanced thermostat troubleshooting, you can shut off the breaker and cross the two wires that serve the furnace. Flip the breaker back on. If the furnace fires, the thermostat is the problem.

Check the Furnace

The pilot light should be visible inside the heat exchanger on the furnace. If you don’t see a flame when the furnace is off, then you may need to re-light it. Pilots that don’t re-light properly may have a supply issue that a furnace technician needs to assess and fix.

If the pilot is on but doesn’t ignite the burners when the thermostat calls for heat, the ignitor is the likely culprit. Turn off the gas reset valve for at least five minutes, and then turn it on and try again. Call a technician if it still won’t light.

Contact us at Rodenhiser Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning for more expert advice on troubleshooting heating concerns in your Route 495/128 area home.

Image via Shutterstock.com

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