Grand Home Services Blog

How Does A Boiler Work?

If you have a boiler in your home or you are thinking about replacing your heating systems with one, you may wondering how a boiler works.

Boilers work through heating water or producing steam through pressure. This heated water or steam can then be used to bring heat to your building. That is how a boiler works in it’s simplest form, if you are thinking there has to be more to it you are right!

How Does a Boiler Work?

Whether you have a gas or oil fueled boiler, these systems will work through controlled combustion. Your boiler has a few key pieces that help it through the controlled combustion process. A burner, combustion chamber, heat exchanger and controls will all be a part of your boiler set up.

The burner is used to mix oxygen and fuel together. The burner and ignition device then combust,  this process takes place in the combustion chamber. Heat is generated in the combustion chamber and then transferred through water or steam via the heat exchanger and a series of pipes into your home.

The controls on your boiler allow you to control water temperature, steam pressure, the fuel supply, the air supply, the exhaust draft, the firing rate, your systems ignition and the boiler pressure. As you can see those controls are an important part of your system.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Using a Boiler for Heat

Boilers have been used for many years and have seen many changes over the year. Thanks to upgrades and technology boilers can now achieve a level of efficiency up to 95% providing a cost effective and energy saving heating method. Boilers also have a longer lifespan than most other heating systems and are effective at producing heat that does not dry out your home’s air.

The main disadvantages of using a boiler is the unreliable cost involved depending on your boilers fuel system and the fact that if boilers aren’t regularly maintained their efficiency can drop drastically.

Installing a Boiler in Your Home

If you are considering installing a boiler in your home or you currently have one and are wondering if you should replace it, the team at Grand Home Services LLC can help.

We can help you decide which heating source is best for your home, whether it be a boiler or another more effective source of heating.

We service the Denver metro and surrounding area and are here to help you keep your home comfortable without high energy costs

What is a Forced Air Heating System?

If you are looking for a new heating system for your home you may come across the term, forced air heating system. This type of heating system is very popular across the country and for good reason.

What is a Forced Air Heating System?

Forced air heating systems work with a furnace and ductwork. You need ductwork installed in your home if you are looking to use a forced air heating system. The system cycles the air in your home through the ducts onto the furnace where the air is heated and filtered then back through the ducts and into your home.  In conjunction with your thermostat, you can keep the temperature in your home consistent throughout by using a forced air heating system.

There are many different things to consider when deciding what type of forced air heating system to install, these may include;

  • Noise Levels
  • Comfort Levels
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Convenience
  • Zoning

Every system works differently and it important to let your heating expert know what your priorities are.

Advantages of Forced Air Heating Systems

There are many advantages when installing a forced air heating system.

  • Energy Efficiency – New systems are now required by the government to operate at a higher level of efficiency.  This helps you save money and helps the environment.
  • Air Quality – The way filters work in forced air heating systems allows you to have cleaner air in your home. You can also include add on’s like air purifiers and dehumidifiers to make the air in your home clean and comfortable.
  • Heating and Cooling – Forced air systems allow you both heat and cool your home through the same ductwork.
  • Comfort – You can have control over the temperature in your home and have the heated air delivered to every room in your home, this keeps the whole house comfortable. If you prefer separate controls you can look at having a split system installed, giving you complete control over different areas in your home.

Having a Forced Air Heating System Installed

If you are in need of a heating system for your home that can deliver comfort to your home no matter what season it is, a forced air heating system may be the right choice.

The team of home comfort experts at Grand Home Services would be happy to discuss the pro’s and con’s of a forced air heating system with you so that you can make the right decision for your home.

Contact us at Grand Home Services today and learn how you can keep your Denver home comfortable while keeping your energy costs down.

What is a Good AFUE Rating for My Furnace?

Efficiency levels are very important when it comes to keeping your home comfortable. To save the most money when heating your home you will want to look for a high-efficiency furnace.

A good thing to look at to make sure you are getting an efficient furnace is the AFUE rating. AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. It is there to help measure the efficiency of your furnace so that you can make a smart decision when installing a new furnace in your home.

How does the furnace AFUE Rating work? 

AFUE measurements are taken over a year to ensure you are getting the most accurate measurement. The AFUE measures how efficient your system is at turning the fuel it uses into heat.

So if your furnace has a rating of say 85% this indicates that 85% of the energy inside your furnaces fuel source ( say gas for example) is turned into heat. The other 15% disappears along the way and likely never enters your home. This does not include the heated air that may escape from leaky ducts etc.

What is an Optimal AFUE Rating for My Homes Furnace? 

All furnaces manufactured in the U.S should have a minimum rating of 81%. However, if you are looking for a system that is energy star rated then you will be looking at furnaces with AFUE ratings of 90% and above. Obviously the higher the rating the more energy efficient your system will be.

When looking for the highest AFUE rating you will want to look at electric furnaces. These are rated between 95% and 100% and this is due to the fact that everything is contained in the inside system so there is not a lot of heat loss happening. Systems like gas with outside components may be less efficient due to the heat loss factor.

Help with Choosing the Right Furnace for Your Home 

If you are looking for a furnace that gives you maximum efficiency, our team of heating experts would love to help. We work hard to find homeowners in Denver the right heating system for their home.

We will advise you on each furnaces AFUE ratings and additional advantages, letting you choose the right system for your needs.

If you are looking to install a new furnace contact the team at Grand Home Services. We work hard for homeowners across the Denver and surrounding areas to ensure their homes are comfortable year round.

 

How Can I Lower My Energy Bills?

If you dread the energy bills that come along with the cold winters and hot summers here in the Denver you are not alone. Although we enjoy some mild days we also get plenty of days where our heat and AC are running all day long. So how can you lower your energy bills during these high demand times?

Lowering your Denver Energy Bills 

Lowering Your Energy Bills in Winter

  • Let the Sun In – We are so lucky to have plenty of sunshine here in Colorado. During winter open up your blinds and curtains during the day. The sun will heat up your spaces naturally and your furnace/heating system will cycle on and off a whole lot less.
  • Insulate – If you feel cold air coming in through the door and windows go to your local home improvement store and buy some weather stripping. Fill in the gaps where the air is coming in. You can also use heavy curtains at night to help keep the cold gushing in.
  • Reverse the Fans – Reversing your fans can help push the hot air that rises back into your space. Find the switch on the side of your fan and get your ceiling fans working for you.
  • Embrace Coziness – Embrace a little cozy in your life. Add cozy blankets to your space. You can do this in place of turning the thermostat up, it will also help you relax!

Lowering Your Energy Bills in Summer

  • Block the Sun – In summer you want to do the reverse of winter. You want to keep the blinds and curtains closed during the hottest parts of the day or when the sun is beating in.
  • Use Fans – Don’t just think ceiling fans. If you have a two-story home and your second story is always hot. Use fans to push the cool air from downstairs into your upstairs area.
  • Open Windows at Night – We are lucky to live in a place that cools off at night. Opening the windows and using window fans can help you cool off the house at night so that you can turn off the AC for longer periods of time.

Things You Can Do to Reduce Energy Costs No Matter the Season

No matter what season it is there are two things you can do to help reduce your energy costs.

    1. Change Your Filter Out – Changing your HVAC system filter can help your systems run more efficiently. It will also keep the air in your home cleaner.
    2. Have Your HVAC Systems Maintained – Maintaining your heating and cooling system will help you save money on your energy costs and will help your systems run more effectively.
    3. Upgrade to a More Energy Efficient System – In the last decade, efficiency levels of HVAC systems has increased significantly. If your system is 20 years old or more, you could be paying twice as much to heat and cool your home!

If you are looking for HVAC services in Denver the team at Grand Home Services can help!

 

 

 

My Air Conditioner is Blowing but Not Cool

There is nothing worse than getting to Summer, turning on your AC system only to find it is not working properly. If you turn on your AC only to find that it is not blowing cold, there are a few reasons this may happen.

The Four Most Common Reasons Your AC will Blow Warm

There are many reasons your AC could not be performing correctly. Let’s look at the four most common reasons your unit may be blowing warm air instead of cold air.

  1. Leaking Refrigerant - If your system has a refrigerant leak due to loose parts or a worn valve the refrigerant will slowly leak out. Without refrigerant, your AC unit can’t cool off the air. This means only hot air gets pushed into your home. If you suspect you have a refrigerant leak it is best to let an expert take care of it.
  2. A Frozen Unit - Your AC system can freeze and this can be a common cause of warm air. The evaporator coil in your system may ice over and this can block the cool air flow. In place of the cool air flow you get your motor’s air flow which is warm. If your AC system freezes, turn it off. Leave it for at least 2 hours then turn it back on. If it is still not working call for AC repair.
  3. Check Your Thermostat - Sometimes we forget to switch the thermostat from heat mode to cool mode. This is an easy fix and probably a great place to start if your air is blowing warm.
  4. Dirty Air Filters - When filters get clogged and dirty they can reduce the cold air that gets blown into your home. Check your filter. If they are dirty, replace or clean them then test the temperature of the air coming through your vents.

If you have checked your thermostat and filter and the air coming out of your vents is still warm, it is time to call a professional. There are many electrical parts in your unit and a specialist should be able to diagnose the initial cause quickly.

Contact the Aurora AC Repair Experts 

The team at Grand Home Services work hard to help homeowners in the Denver metro area stay comfortable year round. If your AC system is blowing hot, contact us today. Our fully trained and licensed technicians have the right knowledge and tools to get your AC running cold again.

Contact Grand Home Services today at 729 365 1187.

What is AFUE?

If you have ever looked at furnaces online or in store, you may have noticed some funny words alongside the descriptions. AFUE is one of these words that is used regularly when describing the benefits of a furnace.

While it may set your mind spinning when you read it, AFUE is actually easy to understand and can help you make the best choice when it comes to an energy efficient furnace.

What is an AFUE rating?

AFUE is a rating that can help you understand how well your furnaces system converts the fuel into energy to help your system heat your home. The higher the AFUE rating the more fuel is actually being used and the less fuel is being wasted.

AFUE stands for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. Most gas furnaces have an AFUE rating of between 89% and 98% making them a lot more efficient than an oil furnace. The remaining percentage of fuel used in your system will often escape through venting, or go back into the system to help fuel other areas.

The department of energy has set a minimum standard of 78 percent when it comes to the AFUE, however this number can change on a year to year basis as technology changes.

AFUE and Your New Furnace

When it comes to purchasing a furnace the higher the AFUE the better a gas furnace is going to be more efficient than an oil furnace. This is due to the fact that most oil furnaces have an AFUE of between 80 – 90 percent.

Here in Denver most furnaces used in housing are gas furnaces, this makes replacing your old furnace with a new gas furnace that has a high AFUE a lot easier.

Furnace Installation & Replacement in Denver

If you are looking for a new furnace in the Denver area that can help you lower your energy costs, contact the team at Grand Home Services today. We work with homeowners throughout the Denver metro area to ensure that they stay comfortable, no matter what the seasons bring.

 

Replacing a Boiler With a Furnace

If you live in an older home that has a boiler system in place to heat your home, you may be considering what other options you have. Common heating sources throughout the Denver area include boilers, however, most households now heat their home through a furnace.

Converting your boiler to a furnace system can be a big job and the cost is not cheap, but there may be some worthwhile benefits from undertaking these changes. Grand Home Services can provide you with a quote and information about switching your boiler system to a gas furnace, contact our team today to find out more.

Boiler to Gas Furnace Conversion

If you are looking into switching your system over, there are a few things you will want to consider.

  • If your home has always run on a boiler system, converting to a furnace may include the installation of ductwork, which can be a big job. The cost of the ductwork can vary depending on the size and design of your home.
  • You will want to have any conversions done before winter hits. This is due to the fact that switching from one system to another can take time and there will be days where you won’t have any heat available.
  • Converting from a boiler system to a gas furnace may increase your home’s value, especially if you are incorporating a full central heating and cooling system.
  • Many newer boilers offer energy efficiency levels that match those of a central ducted system. They can also provide cleaner air and even heating to your home. If your boiler is working fine and its efficiency seems to be good, you may want to put off changing to a gas furnace.
  • If you don’t want to deal with ductwork but would still like to switch out your boiler, you may want to consider  a ductless system.

If you would like to know more about the benefits and the negatives of switching out your home’s heating systems, contact the team at Grand Home Services today.

Boiler Replacement in Denver

If you would like to know more about the boiler replacement process, Grand Home Services can help. We work with homeowners in the Denver area to ensure that their homes stay comfortable all year long.

If you are looking for a team of heating and cooling professionals in the Denver area, contact Grand Home Services today at 720-365-1187.

Why Is My AC Leaking?

While a drop of water here and there may be normal when it comes to your AC, constant leaking or pooling of water is not normal. Constant leaking or water pooling is likely signaling that something is wrong within your system.

There are a few reasons why you may be seeing water leaking from your system, let’s look at some of the more common reasons your AC is leaking.

  • Poor Installation - An AC unit that is not installed correctly may not be level, if this is the case too much pressure may build up within your system causing many issues including the pooling of water.
  • Condenser Pump - If your condenser pump is broken, it won’t be able to do its job of pumping out excess water. This can quickly cause water to build up in the condenser pan, causing the water to overflow.
  • Condensate Drain Line Issues - If your condensate drain line is clogged or damaged, this can cause water to backup and overflow, drip, or leak.
  • Air Leaks - The sealing around your air conditioner prevents too much warm air getting in around your unit. When there are air leaks, the warm air meets the cool air and this can cause excess condensation to build up.
  • Frozen Coils - The coils inside your AC unit can freeze up. When this happens ice can form around the coil. Once you have turned your system off and it begins to defrost, the ice can melt causing a puddle to form around your unit.

As you can see there could be several reasons why your AC may be leaking. Water that is building up outside or inside of your home can cause damage to your home’s structure, so it is a good idea to have a leaking system taken care of promptly. If your system is leaking water, contact the team at Grand Home Services today.

Why Does My AC Smell Musty?

If you have ever turned on your AC to find a weird smell coming from the vents, then you likely understand what it means to panic. No one wants a weird smell in their home, especially when that smell is a musty, damp smell.

There is a reason why people panic when they smell that musty smell, this is due to the fact that musty smells are often related to mold and mildew. Mold build-up can cause health problems within your home, increasing allergies, making it harder to breathe, and causing prolonged illness.

Why Does My AC Smell Musty?

There are many reasons why you may be smelling that musty smell coming from your home’s AC system.

  • Stagnant Water - If you have stagnant water sitting in your AC’s drip pan this could lead to mildew build up within your system. When water pools it often means there is a blockage somewhere in the condensate drain pipe.
  • Oversized AC Systems - If you are smelling a musty smell in your home, it could be due to your AC system being too big for the amount of square footage it is cooling. When the AC system is too big air rushes through the system without dehumidifying, this leads to too much moisture in your pipes and can cause mold and mildew to build up.
  • Dirty Ducts and Vents - If your home often feels humid or you live in a humid climate, these high humidity levels can cause mold and mildew build-up throughout your home, including in your AC ducts and vents. Mold can spread quickly and you will be able to smell that musty smell whenever your AC turns on.

Air Conditioner Service in Denver

If you switch your AC on, only to find there is a musty smell coming from your vents, it is a good idea to get your system checked. Leaving your system could not just lead to a smelly home, but may also cause health problems with those living in your home.

Contact Grand Home Services today to have your system checked for mold or mildew build-up in the Denver, CO area.

Making Your Roof More Energy Efficient

The way your roof is designed plays an important role in how well it is able to help you maximize energy efficiency. Simply remodeling your roof to be more efficient can make the difference between spending more and saving on your power bill. Here are a few ways you can make your roof more energy efficient.

Install a Cooler Roof

By having your roof installed or replaced with one that has lighter colors can help keep your home cooler. Traditional roofs are typically made of black asphalt or dark wooden shingles. With a lighter colored roof, the light will reflect the sun’s rays and heat away from your home instead of absorbing it.

Insulate Your Attic

Don’t just focus on the outside of your home when remodeling it for energy efficiency. You should also make an effort to have the roof insulated from beneath. If you’ve ever been in the attic during the summer or winter, you know that it’s much hotter or cooler than the rest of the house. By insulating it, you can block outside air that can warp the temperature inside your home and overwork your HVAC system.

Choose Sustainable Material

There are a variety of different sustainable materials being released into the market each year, making it difficult to decide which one is right for your home. By speaking with a roofing specialist about this, you can get the best advice based on your location and home design. Just make sure that the material is light colored for a cooling effect. Just keep in mind that sustainable materials typically don’t last as long as traditional roofs. However, with a sustainable roof, you can save upwards of 30 percent on your energy costs each year.

If you’re planning to have a new roof construction or replacement for your property, you should keep these ideas in mind to help make your home more energy efficient. For any of your Denver roofing needs, consider the help of Pinnacle Roofing Solutions.