Understanding Your Leaky Toilet

February 12, 2019

Leaky toilets are among the most common problems that require a plumber’s intervention. Although it can be tempting to let a leaky toilet drip when it doesn’t cause a serious and visible problem, this can actually lead to increases in utility bills and make your bathroom floor more dangerous. Some of the most frequent causes of leaky toilets are outlined below. Malfunctioning Flappers When you push down the flush handle on your toilet, you’ll notice that you can feel a slight amount of resistance before the toilet flushes properly. This resistance is caused by the flapper, a piece of plastic or metal that prevents water from flowing into the toilet bowl. These flappers can malfunction in a variety of ways, most of which will require a plumber to fix. The most common way a flapper malfunction is when it sticks. You can easily identify this malfunction by a toilet handle that sticks into a depressed position after being pushed. This will be accompanied by a steady stream of water into the bowl. Although you can sometimes fix this issue by just jiggling the switch, a flapper that sticks regularly will need replacing. If your flapper breaks, your toilet may become...

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Furnaces – New vs. Old

January 29, 2019

The most important appliance that you can have in your home today is your furnace. While furnaces have been around for decades, they continue to be modified and improved with time. There are a variety of benefits that come with new furnaces today that were not included with older furnaces. More Efficient One of the main advantages of newer furnaces today is that they are far more efficient than furnaces were in the past. In past decades, the average AFUE rating, which is an indication of furnace efficiency, was around 70 percent. Today, that figure has increased to more than 95 percent with some newer furnaces. This drastically cuts down on waste and could lead to lower energy bills. Furnaces have become more efficient through a wide variety of upgrades. First, they are now made with materials that allow them to be more efficient. This includes having electronic ignition systems, utilizing more efficient pilot lights, and having an improved heat exchanger that better traps heat, which can then be moved around the home. Quieter A furnace built in recent years is also much quieter than one that was produced in the past. A modern furnace has sealed combustion chambers, which...

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3 Heating Hacks

December 18, 2018

Will you stay warm this winter? Each year, the winters in Salisbury are increasingly harsh. Don’t let the coziness of a warm home elude you this year. Check out these 3 clever heating hacks to keep the cold out where it belongs. 1. Insulate Your Doors And Windows For The Season Insulating your doors and windows doesn’t have to be a major renovation project. In fact, you don’t even need to use traditional insulation to warm your home. Save the permanent insulation project for a different time. For now: Buy insulation foil Purchase some door draft-stoppers Cover your windows with the insulation cellophane, and put a draft-stopper under each door Soon, you’ll find that your house is less drafty. All the warmth stays trapped inside. 2. Often Use Your Oven Do you cook a lot? If not yet, this winter is a good time to start. Baking or broiling meals in your oven generate heat. Since a kitchen is the central area of a home, the heat wafting from the oven can easily warm the house. When you’re done baking or cooking, turn off the oven and leave its door slightly ajar. This helps the heat get out into the...

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Signs You Need Water Heater Repair

November 29, 2018

How do you know when your water heater needs repair? If you’re not able to see the warning signs, then you won’t know until nothing but cold water is running out of your shower. Why wait to this point? By knowing the signs, you can do something about your water heater in advance. This can potentially save you from wasting money on a new system. Let’s take a look at the top signs a water heater is in need of repair. 1. The Water Temperature is Inconsistent When you run your shower, does the temperature fluctuate? This is a big clue that there’s an issue with your water heater. If the water doesn’t stay hot the entire time, then this is a sign that there’s mineral buildup around your heating element. Or it can mean the heating element needs repair or replacement. 2. Your Water Has a Rust Color If you’re noticing your hot water has a brownish tint to it, then this could mean there’s corrosion in your water heater. This will require replacement by a professional. It’s also possible the issue is with your public water supply or corroded iron plumbing pipes. One way to know is to...

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What is A Heat Pump?

November 6, 2018

If you ask a search engine, you’ll probably get some variation of ‘a device that transfers heat from a colder area to a hotter area by using mechanical energy’. This is accurate but doesn’t give the clearest picture of what it does. Here is an explanation of what a heat pump looks like and what it does. Heat Pumps in Layman’s Terms The term ‘Heat Pump’ relates to two separate parts of one machine. There is the out-door unit, which is technically the actual heat pump part. Then there is the in-door part. This is called the air handler. Refrigerant is moved between these two parts via a piece called a Compressor. What makes a heat pump so useful is how it transfers heat instead of trying to generate it. Depending on the weather, it can either move the heat from your home or move it into your home. This way your home is a lot more energy efficient. If you have any interest in installing a heat pump or learning more about the process, feel free to call REAL HVAC Services! We’re here to help.

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How Often Do I Need To Change My Air Filters?

November 3, 2018

The filters in your home, and how clean they are, can determine air quality, system efficiency, and so much more. Seeing how important clean filters are, how often do you need to change them? While there are a variety of factors going into the answer, there are common suggestions from HVAC experts. Filter Changing Recommendations From The Professionals Without any other deciding factors, most would recommend getting your filters changed every three months. If you have pets, this time drops to two months. If a member of your household has allergies, or any other type of sensitivity, this will drop again to every six weeks. Those living in the home aren’t the only deciding factors. The size of your home, its location, and how often you use the HVAC systems can play a role. A small cottage in the country won’t require as many changes in comparison to a large home in the city. If you have any questions about how often you need to change your filters, or you need to schedule an appointment to get them changed, feel free to call Real HVAC Services. We’re here to help!

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What Is a SEER Rating?

November 1, 2018

There are a lot of acronyms in the HVAC lexicon, and one fairly common one is SEER. What is SEER and how does it effect your energy bills? Let’s start with the first question. SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. Essentially it is how much of a cooling output your system has divided by all the electrical energy that goes into the unit. Both the output and the input are during the same period hence the ‘seasonal’ part of SEER. What Should My SEER Rating Be? Now on to what your rating should be. Most modern AC units are made with a minimum of a 13 SEER with the maximum getting higher all the time. If you have an older unit with a lower SEER than 13, it is highly recommended you upgrade to a newer system. Depending on the conditions of your home, you may be spending more to cool your home. It’s not just the savings which improve with a higher SEER rating. Your living situation will improve as well. Homes with a high SEER unit have a more even temperature and less humidity. In short, it is recommended your SEER is somewhere between 14 and 18....

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What Does BTU Mean?

October 30, 2018

Often words or terms used in the HVAC industry have most people scratching their heads. And while BTU has been partially defined in other blogs on this website, it can be useful to explain what something is in its own article. So what does BTU mean? British Thermal Units BTU stands for British Thermal Unit. As the term ‘thermal’ suggests, BTU is a way to measure energy created through heat. One BTU equals the energy needed to heat a pound of water one degree. In other words, you’d need approximately 1,178 BTUs over an hour to boil one gallon of water starting at seventy degrees Fahrenheit. BTUs for Heating and Air Conditioning Since HVAC systems often involve the movement of heat and thermal energy, BTUs are often used to measure the amount of energy needed to heat or cool a room or home. Portable air conditioning units are a great example of systems that use BTUs. If you’re looking to find out how efficient your home is, check how many BTUs are needed to heat it. If your home is using far more than what is normal, you may be losing money on heating and cooling. If you have questions...

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Why Do I Need A Humidifier

October 24, 2018

As we transition from summer to fall, it’s important to think ahead to winter. While preventative maintenance checks are in order for both your HVAC and plumbing systems, it’s critical to plan for other weather-related issues. Once the humidity of the summer and fall pass, the arid nature of winter must be addressed. Your building, whether residential or commercial, has an optimal range of humidity. In the summer, you should have sixty percent or less in terms of humidity, and in winter the humidity should rest between twenty-five and forty percent. If the percentage is too high, your home will become an environment prime for mold growth. If it’s too low, some of these symptoms may start to occur: warping of wood furniture and flooring, dry or cracked skin, and nose bleeds. On top of that, you may start to experience the most wonderful trait of winter: static shock. To avoid these issues, and others like it, we recommend investing in a humidifier for your home. Before running out to buy one, you should consider which type you need. Do you need a humidifier for one room of your house? Or do you need a system that’s powerful enough to...

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How to Find a Great Plumber!

October 14, 2018

There’s no doubt about it – when your pipes get clogged or something springs a leak, you need a plumber that knows his stuff. But how can you be sure that the person you call is going to be able to fix what’s wrong? Here are a few things to look for when choosing a quality plumber. Proof of Professionalism His website looks good and you’ve read his reviews which look great. But don’t overlook this important fact: a professional plumber will list his accreditation, certifications, and licenses on his website too. Don’t see any? Then be wary – he may not be the skilled professional you think. In addition to plumbing licensing in MD, DE, VA, and NC, the expert service repairmen at REAL HVAC Services also belong to a variety of professional and accreditation organizations such as the Salisbury Chamber of Commerce; Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC)and the National Federation of Independent Business Members (NFIB). Another thing to ask for is the local licenses required by quality plumbers. The proper insurance is also necessary to ensure that if a mistake is made, you’re covered. Experience Counts When checking out a plumber’s references, be sure to ask about the...

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