Archives for November 2020

8 Tips For Protecting Your Pipes During Freezing Weather

Freezing temperatures increase the risk of pipes freezing, rupturing and leaking. When water freezes, it expands. This means that pipes filled with water can expand and burst, putting the entire plumbing system at risk of rupture. To help prevent a plumbing catastrophe in the dead of winter, be sure to take the following eight precautionary steps.

  1. Install pipe insulation.

Install fiberglass, polyethylene or foam insulation to protect plumbing pipes in your attic, garage or basement. Focus on insulating pipes in unheated, interior spaces of the home.

  1. Seal cracks.

Walk around your home and check for holes, cracks or openings around windows, door frames, cable holes in the walls and floors. Seal the openings with caulking on exterior and interior walls. This will help keep warm air indoors and prevent freezing.

  1. Apply electrical heating tape to pipes.

Electrical heating tape can help pipes retain heat, especially if they’re located in unheated or exterior locations, such as basements or attics. 

A self-monitoring electrical heating tape has a sensor and automatically turns on and off depending on the pipe’s temperature. A manual heating tape must be plugged in to heat pipes.

  1. Seal crawl spaces.

If temperatures drop very low, you may need to temporarily cover ventilated crawl spaces in the home. This can help reduce the cold air circulating around the pipes.

Cover vents with foam and use duct tape to secure it in place.

  1. Let faucets drip.

Determine which faucets are fed by exposed piping and leave them dripping. This helps create friction, which produces a small amount of heat and makes it harder for the water and pipes to freeze.

  1. Keep the garage door closed.

Many homes have the supply lines going through the garage. Because most garages are made with concrete floors, the space is likely to be very cool, compared to other rooms in the house.

  1. Open cabinets and interior doors regularly.

Doing so will help keep warm air circulating throughout the home and prevent ice blockages and pressure buildup in the pipes.

  1. Maintain a minimum indoor temperature of 55℉.

Though keeping a lower indoor temperature could help lower your heating bill, the savings are not worth the risk of damaged plumbing pipes.

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4 Reasons to Hire a Professional for HVAC Maintenance

As we get closer and closer to winter, homeowners are looking for ways to prepare their HVAC system for the cool months ahead. Routine HVAC maintenance is key to preventing a breakdown in the middle of a snowstorm and will help avoid costly emergency repairs.

But sometimes it’s better to hire a professional for HVAC maintenance, rather than trying to do it yourself. Here are four reasons why.

  1. An HVAC professional will perform a thorough inspection.

The simple truth is you don’t know what you don’t know. But an HVAC professional is trained to spot the least suspicious signs of a breakdown waiting to happen. During an inspection, the technician will do the following:

  1. Check the voltage and electrical components.
  2. Lubricate moving parts.
  3. Inspect (and replace, if necessary) the filter.
  4. Inspect condensate drain for clogs and blockages.
  5. Check thermostat settings and test calibration.
  6. Check electrical connections.
  7. Inspect HVAC appliances.
  8. Test safety controls.
  9. Test airflow throughout the home.
  10. Inspect the blower.
  11. Check refrigerant pressure.
  12. Test gas piping and pressure.
  13. Test the heat pump’s heating mode and defrost cycle.
  1. An HVAC professional can identify problems before they become serious.

During an inspection, the HVAC technician will easily identify signs of a problem, such as:

  • Loose blower belt
  • Improperly firing burners
  • Loose wiring harnesses
  • Leaking coolant from the AC system
  1. An HVAC professional will make the necessary repairs quickly and efficiently.

If the HVAC technician notices a problem during the inspection, he’ll typically be able to take care of the repairs right then and there. Whether you’ve got loose ductwork, a dirty air filter, or a blower motor that needs lubrication, you can be confident that your HVAC system will be in top condition once he’s done.

  1. An HVAC professional will educate you on ways to prevent breakdowns and properly maintain the system.

One reason an HVAC inspection is so invaluable, is that you’ll be able to ask the technician any questions you may have about properly maintaining your HVAC system. He will help you spot the signs of a malfunctioning system and share tips and tricks to keep the system in top condition.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to 4 Eco Services. We’re happy to schedule an inspection, maintenance or repairs for your HVAC system.

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