When to Replace the Filter in Your Heating System

Replacing the air filter in your home’s heating and air-cooling system is an essential household chore, but many homeowners forget this task and experience the unpleasant side effects that usually accompany a dirty air filter. Some cheaper filters may need replacing every month or so while higher-quality pleated filters can last six months or more. However, as a general rule you should replace the filter around every 90 days. 

Signs You Need a New Air Filter

Irregularities in inside air control are usually easier to detect for individuals who suffer from allergies and sensitivity to certain particles, like pollen or pet dander. These particles enter the air in the home and when they pass through the heating and air system, the filter traps them to prevent them from circulating back into the air supply. If you typically do not experience problems with your allergies inside and then start noticing symptoms, this could be a sign of a dirty air filter that needs replacing.

Factors to Consider 

There are additional factors to consider if you’re thinking of replacing your air filter. The heating and air systems in larger homes move a larger quantity of air, and more square footage means more potential to accumulate dust and other particles. Larger homes may require more frequent air filter replacement than smaller homes.

If you have pets, it is likely their displaced hairs will find their way into the air system of the home, so this may require you to replace the filters more often. This is also true if you have young children under the age of four; infants and toddlers have more sensitive and vulnerable respiratory systems, and regular filter replacement every month or so can help ensure health and safety from germs and airborne bacteria. 

Remember, just because an air filter looks clean does not mean that it is. If the filter still appears clean after three months of use or longer, you should still replace it if you’re experiencing issues with the air quality in your home.

4 Reasons Your Furnace Might Not Work This Fall

If you’ve lived in Bromall, Pennsylvania, long, you know it’s a good idea to test your furnace well ahead of cold weather. The first time the temperature drops, everyone in town will switch on the heat. For some people who didn’t think ahead, the heat won’t come on. Heating and air conditioning companies will be swamped with calls, and there are only so many technicians available. Some families will be stuck shivering in the cold while they wait their turn for service. But what happens if you switch your thermostat to heat on the first fall day, and you find out you have a problem? Here are some reasons your furnace might not be working.

Electrical Issues

 Even if you have a gas furnace, it still requires power. If you switch on your thermostat and nothing happens, you might have loose or corroded wires in your unit or in the thermostat. Make sure your thermostat is set to heat, check your electrical box for a blown circuit breaker, and examine wiring leading to your furnace. If you see loose wires, contact an expert immediately.

Pilot Light Is Out

 If the blower goes on but all you get is cold air, check to see if you can see the blue flame of the pilot light. If you don’t see a flame, the furnace may simply need to be relit.

Dirty Filters

 Filters should be changed every 30 to 90 days. Dirty filters make your furnace work harder to push out warm air, which wears it out faster. If your furnace doesn’t seem to be putting out much heat, check the filters. If your furnace frequently switches between hot and cold, that also may indicate a clogged filter.

Mechanical Problems

 If your furnace thumps, bumps, or squeals, it may have mechanical issues. Call an expert right away so a mechanical issue doesn’t lead to system failure.

 Have your heating and air conditioning systems checked twice a year to prevent major issues. With regular maintenance, you’ll never have to wonder if your heater is ready for the cold weather ahead. Contact John McCuen, Inc. for plumbing, heating, and air conditioning in Bromall, PA, and throughout the area.





Saving Money on Winter Energy Bills

Saving Money on Winter Energy Bills

Furnace Replacement in BroomallIf your bank account is feeling a little empty after the holidays, you aren’t alone. Unfortunately, as the Pennsylvania temperatures plummet this January, you’re probably expecting to have higher energy bills. The good news, though, is that there are actually some pretty simple steps you can take to lower your bill, even during this often expensive time of year, and you won’t even have to sacrifice your family’s comfort to do it.

 Turn Down the Heat

The easiest way to save a money on your gas or electric bill is to simply turn the thermostat down a few degrees. Setting your thermostat at 68 degrees instead of, say, 70 or 72 degrees will save you a considerable amount of money. For every degree you lower the temperature between 60 degrees and 70 degrees, you can expect to see approximately a 5% decrease in your heating bill.

When you’re at work or out for the day, drop the thermostat to 55 degrees for even more savings. Health permitting, you can also significantly decrease the temperature while you’re sleeping. Another option is adding climate control in each room. Doing so would allow you to keep the rooms you’re using at a given time toasty and warm while keeping the others cooler.

Replace Furnace Filters

The filter in your furnace needs to be replaced regularly. If it isn’t, it can become dirty and block airflow. This makes your furnace work harder to heat your home which increases your bill. Simply replacing your furnace filter is another easy way to save about 5%.

Adjust and Insulate Your Water Heater

You can save 7 to 11 percent on your energy bill just by putting your water heater on the “normal” setting. If your water heater doesn’t have a “normal” setting, set it at 120 degrees. If you have a dishwasher, be sure to check the manual first to see what water temperature is required for optimal performance.

Since many water heaters are located in cold spaces like basements and garages, they have to work constantly to keep water warm during the winter. Simply wrapping it in insulation is a simple and effective way to keep the water warm without using as much energy. Water heater insulation and blankets can be found at any hardware store.

Seal Air Leaks

If cold water can get in your house, your heating system needs to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature. Windows and doors are common problem areas. Apply caulking around them to block drafts and seal gaps. If you have older windows, consider covering them in clear plastic to stop chilly breezes from entering your home. Install draft guards on doors leading outside and to cold areas. Make a sweep around your house to look for pipes, vents and conduits going through walls, ceiling and floors to the outside or cold areas. Seal any gaps you find.

Upgrade Your Heating System

Today’s heating systems are much more energy efficient than older models. At John McCuen Plumbing Heating Air Conditioning, Inc., we have several models of energy-efficient furnaces, boilers and heat pumps to choose from, and we will install them fast. Upgrading to a new energy efficient heating system comes at a significant up-front cost, but it will save you a lot of money over time.

When temperatures fall, your energy bills don’t have to climb. Just keep these simple tips in mind, and if you need heating system maintenance, repair or furnace replacement in Broomall, PA, call John McCuen Plumbing Heating Air Conditioning, Inc. at 610-352-9395.

Ways to make sure you’re ready for the winter

7 Recommended Pre-Winter Heating & Cooling Services


Broomall Heating MaintenanceIt is imperative that heating and cooling systems be serviced and thoroughly inspected each year before the cold weather sets in. It is preferable that it be done in early fall, allowing plenty of time for any repairs or replacements that are found to be necessary.

The list of things to include in a heating tune-up will vary according to whether your unit is an indoor or outdoor unit. For an outdoor unit you’ll need to ensure that the following is done:

  • Check for restricted drain openings in the base pan and clear out anything that might be blocking the opening.
  • Clean and inspect the compressor and the tubing connected to it, checking for any damage.
  • Clean the cabinet and coil and do a thorough inspection.
  • Check the level of refrigerant and do necessary adjustments.
  • Check the control box and all electrical parts thoroughly for worn spots or other damage.
  • Cut away any branches or weeds that might be around the unit, leaving plenty of air space.
  • Change air filter

For an indoor unit, these steps will need to be followed:

  • Carefully inspect the drain pan, evaporator coil and condensate drain lines. If there is a need, clean thoroughly.
  • Check the blower assembly which includes blower wheel and motor and housing. Clean each part thoroughly.
  • Check for correct operation of the ventilation system.
  • Check the flue for any loose sections and for corrosion. Replace parts as necessary.
  • Inspect the housing of the combustion blower and clear out any debris that is there.
  • Carefully check ductwork for leaks.
  • Replace or clean air filters.

Broomall Heating Tune UpInspecting and tuning up your heating and cooling system is a job for a professional technician who has been trained in that kind of work. Don’t put it off until the snow flies and suddenly you have no heat.

A heating system that isn’t working properly is not only an inconvenience but can also be a safety concern. A tune-up while the temperature is still mild will ensure that your home will stay warm with no unpleasant surprises when the wind is howling and the snow and ice is accumulating.

Is your HVAC unit ready for the winter? Make sure it is by calling John McCuen Plumbing Heating Air Conditioning, Inc. at (610) 325-9395 and scheduling a service call today!