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3 Furnace Odors That Indicate a Problem

3 Furnace Odors That Indicate a Problem

When the furnace is running in your Winchester, Kentucky, home, you may catch a whiff of something strange, especially if it’s the first time you’ve turned it on for the season. While some smells coming through the HVAC system are normal, some are definitely more concerning. 

Singed Electrical Wires

The familiar smell of electrical burning is never something you want to smell in your home. This odor usually occurs as a result of overheating within the furnace, which can happen if the wires are getting burned or rubber components are melting. If your furnace is brand new, you may smell this for a few days, but the odor should dissipate. Prolonged burning smells coming from the furnace are cause for concern and should be addressed by an HVAC technician.

Rotten Eggs

The smell of rotten eggs usually means that you have a gas leak. Natural gas doesn’t have a smell on its own, but the sulfur odor is added to make sure you know when you have a leak. If you’re standing right next to the furnace and smell it faintly, it’s probably not too concerning. However, if you catch a strong whiff of gas, shut off your furnace and call the gas company right away for instruction.

Mildew

A moldy odor coming from your vents often indicates excess moisture within the HVAC unit. This can happen when the humidity is high or if you’ve had a water leak and some of the water got into the ducts. Either way, it’s important to get it checked out since the dark and warm atmosphere of a furnace is an ideal place for mold to grow and spread quickly. Mold spores can decrease the air quality and cause allergic symptoms like headaches and congestion. 

Strange odors coming from your furnace can indicate more serious problems, so it’s best to contact our technicians at Stivers HVAC Inc. at 859-286-6450 to find out what’s causing the smell and how to fix it.

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The Industy’s Most Efficient Heating Options

The Industy’s Most Efficient Heating Options

With wintry temperatures here in the Versailles, Kentucky, area, it won’t be long before higher utility bills follow. If you’re tired of shelling out big bucks for heating and cooling and are thinking about replacing your system, there are many choices. Technology and innovation have brought many high-efficiency options to the heating and cooling industry.

Efficient Heating Options

Instead of burning gas in a furnace or eating up electricity with a traditional electric system, think about getting a heat pump. Heat pumps move air throughout your home and outside based on what temperature you want inside your home. In the winter, these systems pick up warmth from ambient air and move it around your home. Heat pumps use no fossil fuels and little electricity during moderate winters.

Geothermal heating and cooling is one of the most efficient, cost-saving options out there. Liquid is pumped through the underground pipes surrounding your home where it’s heated to ground temperature. When it’s pumped indoors, the heat is pulled from it and dispersed through your ductwork. Then, the cycle continues until the desired temperature is reached.

Hybrid heating systems are newer and amazing at cost savings. These systems use electricity and gas heat based on the temperature outside and your thermostat setting. When winters are mild, the unit uses electricity for the heat pump. When temperatures drop to frigid levels, the system will switch over to gas heat. Gas heat warms your home faster and is cheaper when you need significant heating.

Ductless mini-split systems are one of the most cost-conscious cooling and heating choices on the market. An outdoor unit connects to several indoor components. They work by picking up warm air through the indoor components and moving it outside, much like a heat pump. The difference is that ductless systems don’t need ducts, and you can control temperatures in zones throughout your home.

At Stivers HVAC, we offer cost-friendly HVAC systems including heat pumps, geothermal, and ductless AC. Call 859-286-6450 for an appointment today!

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Your Guide to Indoor Air Quality Products

Your Guide to Indoor Air Quality Products

It’s no secret that the air inside your Versailles, Kentucky, home contains allergens, irritants, bacteria, and viruses. You can raise your home’s indoor air quality with purifiers, humidifiers, and ventilators.

Purifiers

Whole-home air purifiers work with your home’s heating and cooling system to clean bacteria, viruses, and pollutants from the air. Most purifiers filter the air through high-MERV or even HEPA filters. Some use electrostatic mechanisms to catch smaller particulates and others use ionization to neutralize fumes, odors, and VOCs. A UV light can clean air by killing germs and mold spores.

The biggest benefit to a purifier is staying healthier. Your family will be less likely to get sick this winter and less likely to have allergy and asthma symptoms.

Humidifiers

Whole-home humidifiers help keep the moisture in your home at a comfortable level by reading it with a hygrometer and sending moisture into the air when it’s too dry. In the winter, heating creates dry air and when combined with dry outside air, it creates problems.

Home humidifiers don’t need the tanks cleaned or the water reservoirs emptied like portable units do. Having the right humidity level in winter helps reduce the spread of illnesses and alleviates dry coughs, aggravated sinuses, and dry skin. Humid air feels warmer, so you can lower your thermostat and still be comfortable.

Ventilators

Ventilation systems work to bring fresh air in and pump stale air out. Fresh air is good for you since outdoor air is generally less polluted than indoor air. There are several types of ventilation systems including exhaust, supply, and balanced ventilation. Each kind has its pros and cons, but having any ventilation system is better for your family’s health.

Home ventilators help maintain better indoor air quality by pumping contaminants like fumes from cleaning products, VOCs, and cooking odors and fumes. Pumping bacteria and viruses outside helps everyone stay healthier during cold and flu season.

At Stivers HVAC, we offer all of these indoor air quality products. We’ll offer the best solutions to help your family stay happy and healthy. Call 859-286-6450 today.

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Stay Connected With a Smart Thermostat

Stay Connected With a Smart Thermostat

When the seasons change in Pinkard, Kentucky, it’s not always easy to stay comfortable in your home. An adjustable thermostat can help you manage temperature shifts, but when you’re not home or you forget to make a change to the schedule, you may walk into your home to find that it’s too hot or cold. With a smart thermostat, you can control your HVAC from anywhere while maintaining a more comfortable temperature throughout the year.

Better Control

You might wonder what a smart thermostat can do that your programmable unit can’t already handle. A smart thermostat is connected via Wi-Fi, which means you have access from anywhere at any time. If you forget to adjust the heating or cooling system when you leave for work in the morning or before heading out on vacation, you can simply open an app on your mobile device and make a quick change.

When you leave the office on a chilly winter day, open the app and raise the temperature, and you can walk into a warm, comfortable home. A smart thermostat delivers better control because you can access it easily, even when you’re not home.

Save Energy and Money 

A smart thermostat comes at a slightly higher cost than a programmable option, but it can quickly pay for itself in energy savings, which result in lower monthly bills. Some smart thermostat options have tracking and monitoring abilities, which can make automatic adjustments based on your typical usage as well as the weather conditions outside. The innovative functionality of a smart thermostat helps you reduce your environmental impact by decreasing energy waste. 

Stay Comfortable 

Most homeowners set the thermostat to drop the temperature during the daytime when they’re typically at work, which is a smart way to save energy. However, if you’re home sick, your smart thermostat can sense movement and make automatic adjustments to keep the temperature at a comfortable level. It can also adjust the heating or cooling system to adapt to the exterior conditions.

Learn more about smart thermostats for your home HVAC system by calling us at Stivers HVAC Inc. at 859-286-6450.

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Hot and Cold Spots in Your Home? A Ductless System May Be the Answer.

Hot and Cold Spots in Your Home? A Ductless System May Be the Answer.

From the master bedroom to the family room or den, every room in your home should be a comfortable place to inhabit. All too often, that’s not the case. Many homes in the Lexington region are plagued by hot and cold spots, places where temperatures fluctuate in every season. If you’re tired of having to change clothes or switch rooms just to stay comfortable, help is at hand. A ductless system from Stivers HVAC can provide the perfect solution.

The Trouble with Ducts

Most hot or cold spots are caused by ductwork that doesn’t meet a room’s unique heating and cooling load. This is not always the fault of the original installer. Factors like poor insulation and air leaks come into play as well. Even upgrades like room additions can change the way ductwork moves air through your home. Whatever the cause, ductless HVAC systems eliminate these problems by delivering conditioned directly into living spaces.

Simple Solutions for Every Application

With a ductless system, individual air handlers are connected to a single outdoor unit via unobtrusive refrigerant lines. The sleek indoor units can be installed just where you need them, on the wall or ceiling. The wide selection of ductless products available from Stivers HVAC ensures you’ll find the ideal solution for every situation. We can install a single unit for a problematic area or a multi-zone system for your entire home.

Take Control of Your Comfort

Ductless heating and cooling puts you in charge of your indoor environment. Remote controls, wall consoles and even smartphone apps let you fine-tune temperature and fan settings in every zone. These energy-savings systems save you money too. Ductless HVAC can cut your annual heating and cooling costs by 30 percent or more.

At Stivers HVAC, we’re dedicated to providing our neighbors in Central Kentucky with comfort solutions that improve life at home. To learn more about our extensive array of duct-free products, check out our ductless services or call 859-286-6450.

HVAC Maintenance for Homeowners

HVAC Maintenance for Homeowners

From cleaning out rain gutters to fixing plumbing leaks, maintenance is a critical aspect of homeownership. Protecting the investment you’ve made in your home is particularly important when it comes to heating and cooling. Central Kentucky’s changeable weather means you need to be prepared for whatever Mother Nature throws your way. Stivers HVAC maintenance helps keep everyone comfortable, and it can add extra value to your wallet too.

All About Energy Efficiency

Around 43-percent of home utility bills in the Lexington area go towards heating and cooling. Anything you can do to increase the efficiency of your HVAC systems decreases your costs. There are a few energy-saving jobs you can easily tackle on your own:

  • Check the air filter every month and change it whenever it’s dirty. Replacing dirty filters with clean ones can lower energy use by up to 15 percent.
  • Keep the area around outdoor HVAC units free of leaves and other debris. Prune back plants to provide a clear perimeter around the equipment.
  • Make sure that vents and grilles aren’t blocked by furniture, drapes or carpets. Dust them regularly to keep the air flowing.

Professional HVAC Maintenance

For optimal energy savings, nothing beats a professional tune-up from Stivers HVAC. Our service technicians are skilled at performing all the maintenance tasks required to maximize efficiency:

  • We calibrate thermostat settings and operational controls to reduce energy waste and enhance your comfort.
  • We check components for refrigerant leaks and loose connections that force HVAC systems to run overtime.
  • We lubricate moving parts and inspect all wiring to ensure that everything runs smoothly and efficiently.
  • We run pressure tests to verify that the ductwork delivers an even flow of air to each living space.

Well-operating HVAC systems help protect the value of your home and safeguard your family’s comfort. Enroll in a maintenance plan from Stivers HVAC, and you can count on enjoying lower energy bills as well. To learn more about the benefits of HVAC maintenance, call us today at 859-286-6450.

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