Month: June 2014

Cozying Up with Reliable Furnace Systems at Home

Keeping warm is big in Toronto and other parts of Canada. In fact, 63% of residential energy use is attributed to heating living spaces. In order to choose which kind of furnace heating structure suits your home, you have to consider running cost and product efficiency.

To help you find out the right fit, here are some types of furnaces that you can utilize to heat up your home:

Forced air system

The forced air system uses various fuel sources like natural gas, propane, oil and electricity to heat the air in the furnace before a fan forces it through a duct system for distribution. The most common type of home heating, this arrangement needs routine filtration and maintenance to remove the allergens that move with the warm air.

Steam or hot water system

A steam or hot water system transfers heat directly from a hot surface to a cold one. This type is commonly distributed through hot water tubes embedded below the floor surface or through radiant panels in ceilings. Energy-efficient hot water systems often emit comfortable, even heat, but can be difficult to repair if problems occur.

Heat pump or reverse cycle system

Heat pumps don’t burn fuel to heat a room. They usually utilize electricity to move heat from one place to another, and eliminate cool air by compressing the refrigerant to make it warmer and circulating it through a heat exchanger. Insulating the unit can lessen the energy that the furnace needs to operate.


Boiler Repair: Knowing When You Already Need One

Preparing for the colder months should take place as early as summer, especially if it involves some of your home heating solutions. Your boiler’s performance, for example, needs to be assessed and evaluated early to ensure uninterrupted performance come winter time. Unfortunately, your boiler may require more than maintenance. Here are a few signs your boiler needs immediate repairs.

  1. Water Leaks – Have you noticed water leaking outside the unit? That is an automatic signal for boiler repair. Leaks would mean that your boiler will tend to use up more fuel than it is supposed to, which means higher costs.
  1. Inefficiency – If you start noticing that your boiler’s performance have dipped, or in worse cases, dropped significantly, then it’s high time for you to have it checked and repaired. Failure to provide substantial – or any – heat at all means there is something internal that needs to be fixed or replaced. You may not know it, but sludge buildup maybe causing it to malfunction.
  1. Strange Noises – Lastly, if you have been hearing sounds that seem quite unusual, better reach for the phone and contact the repair guy. These noises could be caused by iron deposits, which affect the distribution of water.

Repairs will cost you money, but once you realize that your boiler needs one, don’t hesitate to spend on it. You can limit problems, though, by having your boiler go through regular checkups.

Warning Signs for you to Replace your Forced Air Furnaces in Toronto


While an air forced furnace isn’t exactly a silent operator, it shouldn’t be making bothersome noises. Banging, rattling, or squealing noises are red flags that shouldn’t be ignored. Call on trusted HVAC contractors like ones from Laird & Son to know if your furnace is indeed beyond repair and will need replacement.

Household heating and cooling systems like a forced air furnace and tankless water heater in Toronto are considerable investment. Thus, it’s only wise for homeowners to do their share to protect them through regular maintenance. However, there will come a time when maintenance is no longer helpful, indicating that it’s time for a unit replacement.”

Tips for Extending the Life of an Air Conditioner

You’ve just replaced your broken air conditioner with the latest energy-efficient model. It was a bit pricey, but you have no doubts that you’ll make up for the difference in price through energy savings. However, how can you ensure that your new unit lasts longer than your previous one?

Extending the life of an air conditioner is a relatively simple task, but you cannot be lax about it. Here are a few suggestions for helping extend the life of your air conditioner:

Trim the Bushes

If the condenser of your unit is situated near bushes, make sure you trim the bushes on a regular basis. Foliage has a nasty habit of blocking airflow, making you’re A/C unit work harder than it actually has to. A good rule of thumb is that the condenser should be at least 36 inches away from something that could block airflow.

Clock Out Early

Set your A/C to turn off automatically an hour or two before you need to wake up. Don’t worry; your room will stay cool enough for you to be comfortable when you wake up. This provides your unit an extra hour of rest. It may not seem like much, but it definitely adds up over time. You should also follow this one-hour method for when you know you’ll be leaving the house.

A Guide to Energy-efficient Toronto Heating and Air Conditioning Units

“Ensure proper maintenance of HVAC units

Energy Star-rated heating and cooling equipment can only do so much. They are bound to fail at one point if their owners fail to properly maintain them. Homeowners should regularly check if their air filters are dirty or clogged and replace them as needed. Meanwhile, complex problems like a malfunctioning condenser or a defective blower fan motor should be entrusted to well-trained heating contractors in Toronto like those from Laird & Son.

Keep home airtight.

Well-maintained HVAC systems are not a guarantee of energy-efficient use. Homeowners also have to create a secure building envelope by sealing and insulating air ducts and caulking and weather stripping gaps in windows. At times, the holes through which indoor air may escape from are not readily apparent, so homeowners may need to double their inspection efforts.”

Picking the Right Condensing-Gas Furnace

A good number of the furnaces that power HVAC systems across the country are of the condensing-gas variety. If you’ve been moving towards a similar system, you need to know how to pick the one model that will suit your needs at home, and skilled HVAC contractors can help.

It is important that the house and the existing system be checked for the appropriate heating and cooling load of the new system. Dependable HVAC contractors usually have an array of units ready for your perusal.

Condensing-gas furnaces are known for high annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) ratings of between 90 and 97%. The grade can be found in the EnerGuide product label, which can be seen at the furnace’s owner’s manual. A double sign of quality and efficiency would be the ENERGY STAR® label.

Some HVAC specialists claim that condensing-gas furnaces are too advanced for older-model thermostats to properly manage. As such, you must buy a new programmable thermostat to complement the furnace. Your HVAC contractor can guide you on the device’s plus points, such as preset temperatures for specific days.

It is never too late to install a condensing-gas system for your home. You may be in for more energy savings.

Furnace Repair in Toronto is a Step Closer to a More Comfortable Home

“Some of the most common problems that furnaces will sustain include dirty or clogged filters. Thermostat malfunctions and poor heating control due to erratic air flow can cause air flow problems. Moreover, there are advanced problems that no weekend warrior can do alone. Any problems to the furnace can have repercussions for the entire household, in terms of discomfort and a decrease in indoor air quality.

In order to prevent such mishaps from happening, it is important for households to call a reliable company that delivers emergency furnace repair in Toronto. A company like Laird & Son is capable of making quick, effective repairs without harming the environment.”

Troubleshooting a Faulty Gas Furnace

Like other home appliances, gas furnaces are prone to breaking down due to natural wear and tear – and this can spell trouble especially during the cold winter months. Hence, here are a few troubleshooting tips.

The pilot light won’t light up.

A pilot light’s tip is a haven for soot, grime, and grit which can accumulate through the years. If your furnace isn’t firing up, check if the pilot light is out and if the tip is dirty. A clogged tip generally blocks the flow of gas, resulting in a pilot light that won’t stay lit. If you want to be thorough, you can completely remove the tip and soak it in a degreasing solution; attach and relight it.

The pilot light won’t stay lit.

If you’ve already cleaned the tip but the pilot light won’t stay lit, then the furnace might be experiencing problems with the thermocouple. Consult with your furnace’s instruction manual first to find out how to replace the defective unit; then relight and test accordingly.

Low heat output.

If your furnace isn’t generating enough heat, check if the burners are churning out irregular flames. If you notice faint or irregular flames, then the furnace’s base settings may need adjustment. If the flame isn’t the right colour (it should be blue and not yellow), it means that the burners aren’t producing the right temperature. This can be fixed by finding and adjusting the screw in the pilot light to the ideal working temperature. 

Common Air Conditioning Mistakes

Are you having AC repairs done more often each year? Is your power bill steadily rising even if you don’t buy new electrical appliances? Do you often have trouble with efficiently cooling your home?

If you’ve answered yes to the questions above, then there might be some AC problems lurking within your system, all without your knowledge. Here are some of the common causes of such conundrums.

Beyond Size

Don’t assume that whoever has the biggest air conditioner necessarily lives in the most comfortably cooled home. Equipment like ACs are about both size and performance. For instance, a disproportionately large unit will cool the room too quickly, thus cycling on and off just as fast, eventually wearing down the components inside.

Ignoring Maintenance

ACs will need constant care and maintenance, otherwise they will wear down quickly and break down more often. Take the air filter, for example, which is a notorious source of HVAC unit problems if left dirty for a long time. Components like evaporator coils, as well as those that are generally exposed to the outdoors also need constant cleaning and maintenance.

Leaving the AC Open

If you want to make sure that your home is already cooled by the time you get back from work, use a programmable thermostat that can turn the unit on and off at the right intervals. Letting the unit run all day not only wastes power and causes your bill to balloon, but it also makes the unit vulnerable to damage.

Prevent Any Air Conditioning Mishaps; Call a Toronto AC Repair Company

“There are several things that can go wrong with any air conditioning or HVAC unit in the Queen City. Faulty duct work is one of the biggest causes of energy waste in households. A dirty condenser fan also has an adverse effect on the unit, as a faulty one can cause the unit to overheat and malfunction altogether.

These problems can appear on any Toronto HVAC unit, as the city went through an intense winter earlier in the year. In order to prevent such a breakdown from happening, it is important for local households to call a Toronto air conditioner repair service to check the condition of the units.”