Archives for Heating

Snowstorms Are Coming and It’s Time to Prepare Your Furnace

Winter is right around the corner and in Berks County, this also means occasional snowstorms. With this in mind, you will want to make sure your furnace is ready to handle the weather and demand for extra heat. To help you do so, B&L Ott near Reading, PA has compiled this list of tips and tasks to help you ensure your furnace is ready for a snowstorm. 

Inspection and Maintenance

One of the best ways to ensure your furnace is in good shape is to call on the professionals at B&L Ott. We have the knowledge and experience to know what to look for and how to fix any issues we may find. When you call on a B&L Ott technician to care for your furnace, you can have peace of mind that your furnace is safe to use and ready to run. 

Install a Replacement If Needed

One aspect you may want to consider before winter comes is whether or not your system should be replaced. If your system is nearing the end of its life expectancy, been needing more repairs, or having trouble warming your home, it may be time for a replacement. If you need help making a decision, choosing a new furnace, or installing a new furnace, the professionals at B&L Ott would be happy to assist you. 

Clear the Air Vents

If you want to ensure maximum comfort all winter long, check your air vents and make sure they aren’t blocked. When your vents are blocked by either furniture or dust, it will trap the warm air. Then you may start to notice uneven heating throughout your Berks County home. Ensure proper airflow by dusting off your vents and making sure no furniture is in the way. 

You may also want to consider having your air ducts cleaned by B&L Ott if they have not been cleaned in the past 10 years. All of these tasks together will help ensure your family is comfortable all winter long. 

Clear the Area Around Your Unit

If debris gets into your system, it can cause mechanical issues. Even if there are items around your furnace, it can prevent it from ventilating properly. Then you can run into more expensive repairs. With this in mind, you should clear the area around your unit. This way you can help ensure safety and help ensure that your furnace runs properly. 

Test Your Thermostat

You will also want to check your thermostat. Your thermostat is the controls for your entire HVAC system. Therefore, if there is something wrong with it, it can affect your entire system. Test your thermostat by getting another thermometer and seeing how the temperature compares. If there is more than a few degrees difference, you may want to call B&L Ott to have it inspected further. 

Make Sure You Have Enough Fuel

If you have an oil furnace, you will also want to check the levels and make sure that you have enough fuel to last through winter. You will also want to make sure the filter, burner nozzle, and heat-exchanger is clean. 

Make Sure Your Home Is Properly Insulated

Ensuring that your Reading area home is properly insulated can help you ensure that the warm air your furnace creates stays in your home. Be sure to insulate your attic, basement, doors, and windows. Other than keeping your family warm, doing so can also help you save money on your energy bills. 

Consider Having a Generator Installed

Finally, you will want to make sure you can still keep your family warm even if the power goes out. With this in mind, you may want to consider having B&L Ott install a Generac Generator for you. There are few things more annoying than not having the power to complete your daily routine. Having a generator installed can help ensure that you can continue to do so even if the power goes out. 

If you would like to schedule maintenance with B&L Ott, need a repair, or want to have a generator installed, you can contact us through our website here: https://otthvac.com/contact-us/. Alternatively, you can also call B&L Ott at 610-816-6026. By taking steps to make sure your furnace is ready to run, you can have peace of mind this winter.

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Time to Get Your Berks County Home Ready for Fall with Help from B&L Ott!

October is finally here and that means it is time to start getting your Berks County home ready for fall. By completing a variety of tasks you can help ensure that your household continues to run smoothly throughout fall and winter. To help you remember some of the tasks you have to complete, B&L Ott near Reading, Pennsylvania has created this list of errands you will likely want to take care of. 

Store Your Summer Furniture and Tools

If you have nice patio furniture, pool toys, gardening tools, etc., you don’t want them to get buried in leaves or ruined by snow. Therefore, you will want to take the time to either cover them up or store them away. This way they will still be in good condition so you can use them next year. If you have a pool, don’t forget to clean it and get it ready to be closed as well. 

Inspect Your Home for Issues

We had a lot of rain and multiple storms this year. With this in mind, various parts of your Berks County home may have experienced wear and tear. It is a good idea to take a walk around your home and look for any damage. This way you can get it fixed before it gets too cold to work outside. 

Some specific items you may want to check are your roof for broken shingles, your doors, and windows for drafts, the siding of your house, your basement, and your attic. Be sure that these areas are properly sealed and insulated so your family can be warm and comfortable this winter. 

Clean the Gutters and Tend to the Garden

Next, you will want to clean up your gutters and garden. The leaves will start falling soon and they can clog your gutters, trap the water, and attract mosquitos. Be sure to clean your gutters regularly throughout this fall season. 

You will also want to take care of your lawn and garden. Rake the leaves regularly, and fertilize your lawn to help protect your lawn from the frost and snow. It is also a good idea to trim trees and bushes to keep them looking nice. Be sure to clear the area around your outdoor HVAC unit as well. You don’t want any debris falling into it and damaging the parts. Doing so will help you avoid an unnecessary emergency call to B&L Ott. 

Stock Up on Fall and Winter Supplies

You will also want to make sure you have enough fuel and supplies to last throughout the winter. If you have a fireplace or pellet stove, stock up on wood or pellets. If you need to schedule fuel delivery, do so. Many people will have the same idea during this time of year, so start stocking up on supplies now before it gets too busy. 

Prepare for Power Outages

Power outages are fairly common during fall and especially winter in Berks County. With this in mind, you will want to make sure you are ready. If you don’t have a generator consider having B&L Ott install a new one for you. This way your family doesn’t have to go without heat, light, or other necessities if your power goes out this winter. B&L Ott can help match you with the best option for your home size and family needs. 

Schedule Maintenance with B&L Ott

Finally, don’t forget to have HVAC system maintenance by B&L Ott. Doing so can help prevent costly issues, ensure your system is running at maximum efficiency, and give you peace of mind that your system will work when you need it to. When you call B&L Ott for maintenance, we will inspect, clean, and make any necessary adjustments to your system. We will also make repairs with your permission. 

If you would like to schedule maintenance with B&L Ott, you can do so here: https://otthvac.com/contact-us/. You can also call B&L Ott at 610-816-6026. We will help you ensure that your HVAC system is ready for fall and winter so your family can be warm and comfortable. 

 

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Make Sure Your HVAC System Is Ready for Fall

The weather is getting cooler in Berks County and the fall weather is finally starting to kick in. It’s time for fall activities such as hayrides, corn mazes, apple picking, pumpkin carving, Halloween decorating and more. Amidst all of the fall festivities, however, it is also time to get your home ready for colder weather. This includes making sure your HVAC system receives proper maintenance.

Schedule Sooner Rather Than Later

It is better to schedule a maintenance appointment sooner than later. B&L Ott’s schedule can fill up quickly. Scheduling sooner also allows time to schedule another B&L Ott appointment if you need any repairs or replacements. Overall, when you ensure that your system is ready to work early on, you avoid scrambling at the last minute to make sure you have heat when you need it.

Maximize Efficiency, Reduce Repairs, Save Money

Every year, your HVAC system will lose at least a little bit of efficiency from wear-and-tear. How much efficiency you lose depends on how well you take care of your system. If you consistently schedule biannual maintenance with B&L Ott every spring and fall, you can help minimize the efficiency you lose and extend the life of your HVAC system.

When you schedule maintenance with B&L Ott one of our professional technicians will thoroughly inspect your system, clean your system, and make any necessary adjustments. If we notice any issues we will inform you and repair it with your permission. Biannual maintenance allows B&L Ott to catch small issues before they develop into expensive repairs. This and ensuring your system is running as efficiently as possible helps you save more money over time.

Make Sure Your Family Is Safe

One of B&L Ott’s primary concerns is keeping your family safe. When a B&L Ott technician inspects your system they will look for any damage or issues with your HVAC system that may pose a threat to your family. This includes rusting parts or cracks that may start leaking. Once your HVAC system has received biannual maintenance and any necessary repairs you can have some peace of mind that your family will be safe around your HVAC system.

Clean Air and an Efficient HVAC System

Cleanliness is one of the main factors that affect your system’s efficiency. Over time dirt and dust build up. When debris gets into the main part of your system, it can cause damage to the parts. As dust builds up in your air ducts, it can also blog the air flow. This is why it is so important to make sure your system gets cleaned regularly. B&L Ott will help you clean the main parts of your system during biannual maintenance. You should also schedule air duct cleaning about every 10 years.

During the fall season, it is also important to keep an eye on your outdoor unit. When the leaves and branches start to fall, they can get into your unit and cause damage. They can also block ventilation. Be sure to clear the area around your outdoor unit regularly.

Keep Up the Warranty

Most HVAC system’s come with a warranty. It is important to know the terms of this warranty to make sure it isn’t voided. Some terms include making sure your HVAC system receives biannual maintenance. Contacting B&L Ott now can help make sure you uphold your warranty so you are covered if you run into any issues.

Call B&L Ott Now!

If you would like to schedule maintenance from B&L Ott now, you can do so through our website here: https://otthvac.com/contact-us/. Alternatively, you can call, 610-816-6026. We hope you have a great fall season!

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Ways Your Berks County Home Might Lose Heat This Winter and How to Prevent It

winter-670314_960_720Heating typically takes up a majority of your energy bill in the winter. When you lose heat due to air leaks or blockages, your bills will hike even higher. There are a variety of places you may be losing heat in your Berks County home.

Let’s take a look at some common areas that you might be losing efficiency, and how to prevent it!

 

 

Windows and Doors

Doors and windows are a major source of heat loss. Weathering can cause gaps around the edges that allow heat to escape. When the wind blows, more cold air may also come in. This creates extra work for your B&L Ott HVAC system and costs you more. Openings under the door, pet doors, and mail slots can also allow warm air to escape.

Thick curtains can help insulate your windows by helping to block the air. Keep the curtains closed during the evening and night. Then open them during the day so that the natural sunlight can warm your home.

You can use a draft guard to block air from escaping through the openings under doors. To stop air loss from pet doors, use rubber insulation and seal the frame with silicone. If you have a mail slot you can help block air by using a storm door. Another option is to block off the mail slot and install a separate mailbox outside.

Ceilings, Walls, and Floors

Ceilings, walls, and floors are three other major places where you may be losing heat. When insulating, one of your primary focuses should be the attic as a large portion of your home’s heat may be lost there.

Walls with a cavity can be insulated by injecting the walls with insulating materials. If you have solid walls, you will have to add insulation either internally or externally. For floors, you can install insulation or underfloor heating. Adding a rug can also be helpful. B&L Ott recommends hiring a professional to ensure that the insulation is installed properly.

Chimney

buildings-905322_960_720While chimneys look nice, they are not the most efficient way to warm a home. If the damper is damaged, your chimney may actually pull cool air in. This will increase your energy bills.  Check your damper before winter begins and make sure it is sealed tight. There are also a variety of energy-saving accessories you can buy.  Examples include flue sealers, doors, heat exchangers, chimney balloons, and inserts.

Furniture Blocking Air Flow

Furniture near your vents or radiator will block heat from circulating throughout your home. In this situation, you end up paying for heat you are not benefiting from. You may also end up with cold spots when the warm air can’t blow further into the room.

Air Ducts

Similar to furniture blocking your air vents, warm air can be blocked by debris inside of your air ducts. Over time, dust piles up in your vents. As the piles grow, the more air gets trapped in your air ducts. Again, you end up paying for heat that you are not using. B&L Ott offers duct cleaning services to help prevent this problem. You should have your ducts cleaned every 5-7 years.

Improperly Sized Unit

Having a unit that is too large or too small can also decrease the efficiency of your home and cost you more. A unit that is too small will end up working too hard and may leave your home unevenly heated. On the other hand, a system that is too large will turn on and off more often. Since HVAC systems use the most energy during startup, this process is inefficient. It can also decrease the lifespan of your system.

To ensure that you have the right unit for your home, contact the professionals at B&L Ott. We can install a new heating system for you or help maintain your current HVAC system. B&L Ott can help you maximize unit’s efficiency so you can save money while keeping your family warm.

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Prepare Your Berks County Home for Winter

winter power linesAfter a very mild autumn, winter has finally arrived in Berks County. That means freezing temperatures, frigid snowstorms, and plenty of time spent indoors. However, it doesn’t have to mean high heating costs. There are some steps to take to save energy, keep warm, and reduce your monthly bills this Winter. Check out some of our best tips to prepare your home HVAC system for the coldest season:

Conduct Routine Maintenance

The best time to fix potential issues with your heating systems is before they occur. Unexpected repairs during the dead of winter can drive up heating costs. Regular maintenance and check-ups with a professional technician can help prevent problems during the season that your system is working the hardest. Contact B&L Ott today to schedule service in Berks County.

Do-it-yourself maintenance should include replacing your filters. However, if you don’t have knowledge of HVAC systems or suspect a possible problem, it is recommended you consult with a professional. An experienced technician will clean the system, check for potential issues, perform a tune-up, and offer advice on needed repairs or upgrades.

Observe and Repair Air Leaks

Air leaks drive up heating costs because the hot air escapes through them, causing your HVAC systems to expel additional energy to keep your home warm. Seal up all the leaks and cracks in your home for reduced heating costs.

Routine energy audits and maintenance can help you identify and fix air leaks in your home. However, you can also do it yourself when you are short on time and winter is already knocking at your door.

Check door and window frames, electrical and plumbing outlets, and water and furnace flues. Feel for colder spots and areas. Cover up any cracks or leaks with caulk on solid areas. Window frames and cracks in other areas are best repaired with weather stripping.

Pad the Pipes

Pad the pipes in your house to help keep out the cold. Pipes in the basement and garage become especially sensitive to cold weather during the winter. These can freeze, burst, and at the very least need extra energy to heat.

Wrap pipes to keep them warm. Foam insulation, pipe wrap, or heat tape can all be used as materials for padding.

Tending to Air Ducts

Sealing and insulating air ducts properly will help reduce heating costs in preparation for Winter. Check the attic or basement to locate air ducts. Seal air leaks in the ducts using mastic or adhesive-backed metal tape. Insulate the ducts with duct blankets. For those with limited HVAC knowledge or for more complicated jobs, it is recommended you consult with a skilled technician.

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Heater Repair

heating repair

Just as working air conditioners are important during the summer, functioning heater is imperative in the winter. Berks County winters can be harsh. We see plenty of snow and frigid temperatures. If your heater breaks, your family could be left in the cold. B&L Ott is here to help. We offer comprehensive heater repair services so you can stay warm all winter long.

How Heaters Work

Most home heating systems operate in one of two ways: With a boiler or furnace. The process of heating with a boiler is hydraulic. Radiant heat is produced by burning natural gas, oil, propane, or solid fuel. The fuel turns into steam that circulates through a boiler into pipes in each room.

Alternatively, the gas turns into hot water. This can be circulated through baseboards, floor systems, or air coils. Steam boilers generally operate at a higher temperature. They are also less efficient than hot water boilers. A furnace is a centralized heating system that uses a burner and heat exchanger.

Problems to Look Out For

Furnaces may suffer carbon leakage and other issues during the winter months from overuse. Boilers often become worn out and need to be repaired or replaced. Heating systems should be repaired by a knowledgeable technician from B&L Ott. Problems with boilers and furnaces have most often occurred during the cold winter months. This is typically when heaters continue to run to keep your home warm.

There are a variety of issues that signal that your heater may need servicing. Some examples include:

  • Your gas or electric bills are rising.
  • Your thermostat doesn’t work properly.
  • Your burner flame yellow instead of blue.
  • You hear strange noises or smell strange smells.
  • Your heater has trouble starting or doesn’t stay on.
  • Your family hasn’t been feeling well.
  • Your home is dry and dusty.

If you notice any of these signs, you should contact B&L Ott and schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Minor issues left untreated, will likely turn into major issues. Major issues are more expensive to fix and can lead to a total system breakdown.

Quick and Efficient Heater Repair Near Berks County

If you are having issues with your heating system, the experts at B&L Ott can help. We can answer any questions and provide quick and efficient repairs to warm your home again. Please contact us today to request service.

Let’s Repair Your Heating System!

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Heating System Installation

heater system installation

Veteran Pennsylvanians know just how cold and bitter winters can get around here. Heating should never be taken lightly. It’s a comfort, certainly, but it is also dangerous to neglect. PA homes utilize a wide variety of heating systems, ranging from traditional oil baseboard to fireplace to natural gas. Our specialties are heat pump, ducted heating systems, and natural gas installations. We’ve seen it all and know how to make the most efficient system possible for your home or business.

Replacing an old heating system can provide improved efficiency, lower energy bills, and convenience. With an upgrade from B&L Ott, you can experience better comfort and rest assured that your family will be warm.

Choosing a Heating System

Heating systems today come in a variety of brands, models, features, and sizes. There is a different heating system to accommodate almost any home and lifestyle. There are also a lot of factors to consider when trying to heat your home. Some of these include

  • Square footage
  • Glass exposure
  • Ventilation
  • Insulation
  • Duct availability
  • Cost of fuel
  • Budget

These are just a few. The list goes on. With many different options, it can be difficult to choose the right heating system. You can spend hours researching models and comparing prices. B&L Ott already has the knowledge to help you choose the right make and model.

Installation Process

When you schedule a consultation with B&L Ott, we’ll visit your home and do a proper assessment. We will learn about your needs and expectations, then recommend a course of action. A B&L Ott technician may ask you about the size of your home, the size of your utility closet, and your lifestyle. Knowing how often you are home to use your system will also help us match you with the best model for you and your family.

Installation differs depending on existing components and what type of heating system you choose. A B&L Ott technician will take you through the installation process during your appointment. They will estimate installation time and cost as well. A B&L Ott technician will also address any questions or concerns you may have.  You can rest easy knowing that we’ve crunched numbers and determined the smartest solution.

Heating System Installation in Berks County

If you live in Berks County or any of the surroundings areas, consider contacting B&L Ott for your system installation needs. We have a reputation for quality and service, and we aim to prove to you why we are so respected in this industry.

Let’s Install Your Heating System!

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mitsubishi minisplit heating and cooling

Mini-Split Heat/Cool

mitsubishi minisplit heating and coolingFor decades, split-zoning air-conditioning and heat pump systems have been the solution for cooling and heating problems around the world. Our quiet and powerful systems have three main components: an indoor unit, outdoor unit, and remote controller. Installation is as simple as mounting the indoor and outdoor units, connecting the refrigerant lines, and making a few electrical connections.

Why Mitsubishi Electric Systems?

Mitsubishi Electric is the industry leader in split-ductless air-conditioning technology – period. Compare and you’ll see that no one surpasses the Mitsubishi Electric brand’s performance for quiet, easy-to-use, and energy-efficient operation. And because our split-ductless technology carries the Mitsubishi Electric name, you know every product is built to last. The bottom line is, Mitsubishi systems deliver the ultimate in comfort control for your home or office. It’s true today and will be comfortably evident for years to come.

Where Can Mitsubishi Electric Products Be Used?

If a room is too hot or too cold, Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating can handle it! Mitsubishi split-zoning systems are specifically designed to improve the comfort level in an uncomfortably hot or cold room of an existing building. Because they don’t require ductwork, they’re the perfect heating and cooling systems for renovating older buildings that were constructed before air conditioning was available – even those with plaster walls and brick facades. The versatility and variety of applications for Mitsubishi Electric systems are virtually unlimited. They’re an excellent choice for almost any spot cooling or heating situation, including enclosed sunrooms, upstairs bedrooms, classrooms, hospitals, nursing homes, restaurants, hotels, workout rooms, computer rooms, offices and churches.

They’re also equipped with an anti-allergen filter and prevent the cross-flow of air with contaminants. And because they can be controlled by zone, it’s easy to set the controls for the exact room temperature you want.

How does it work?

Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating can fit into almost any space because their innovative engineering optimizes the capabilities of the INVERTER technology and R410A refrigerant for more efficient systems with smaller indoor and outdoor units. R410A refrigerant is environmentally friendly, with zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP). The units themselves are also made of recycleable materials.

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