Archive for January, 2014

Signs Your Heat Pump Needs Repairs

Monday, January 27th, 2014

For Portland’s weather, a heat pump is a great option for year-round comfort in your home. They can handle any level of heat with their cooling power, and our winter temperatures rarely drop to the extremes that will give their heating much trouble.

But a heat pump is only as good as the state of repair that it’s in. When your heat pump shows any signs of troubling behavior, you need to have professional repairs done on the double. We’ve put together a list of common warning signs of a heat pump that needs attention.

Call Clean Air Act for heating repair technicians in Portland, OR who can handle your heat pump issues.

Warning signs of heat pump problems

  • Ice developing along the coils: If you notice ice along the coil that is currently operating as the evaporating coil (indoor coil in cooling mode, outdoor coil in heating mode), then your heat pump could be suffering from one of two problems. There might be a refrigerant leak, in which case you will need repairs to find and seal the leak and then recharge the lost refrigerant. The second possibility is the coil has become too dirty to allow easy heat absorption, and this will require a technician to remove and clean the coil. Just scraping the ice off will not do any good. It will come back and continue to grow.
  • Grinding or clicking noises from the cabinet: Unusual noises from a heat pump cabinet are rarely good signs. The two most common warning noises are clicking and grinding. Clicking is usually a signal that one of the capacitors is on the edge of failing. (Capacitors transfer voltage to start the motors and keep them running.) Grinding tends to mean motors that have lost lubrication or become dirty and will soon burn out. In both cases, you’ll need a repair technician to replace the failing unit(s).
  • The heat pump remains stuck in one mode: If your heat pump refuses to cool or refuses to heat, then the issue is probably from the reversing valve. This valve allows refrigerant to change the direction of its flow through the unit, which is how the heat pump switches from heating to cooling. If the reversing valve malfunctions, the heater will remain in one mode. Call for repairs to have the reversing valve replaced.

You need professional repairs

Heat pumps are complex devices that require a precise balance of different systems—refrigerant loops, compressors, air handlers, motors, thermostats—to work accurately. Without special training and tools, it’s almost impossible to repair them. Amateur repairs are likely to do the opposite: cause further damage to the unit.

Put away the do-it-yourself kit and call up Clean Air Act. We have heating repair technicians in Portland, OR ready 24/7 to assist you.

Reasons to Install Amana Heat Pumps

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

Although the heavy rainfall in Portland may sometimes dampen spirits, we should always keep in mind that in the Pacific Northwest we enjoy relatively mild winters compared to much of the nation. This weather is ideal for a heat pump, a comfort system that provides both heating and cooling. Heat pumps can handle the hottest days of a Portland summer without trouble, and the temperatures in winter rarely drop below a heat pump’s ability to provide warmth.

At Clean Air Act, we often suggest Amana heat pumps to many of our customers looking for heating services in Portland, OR. Here are some of the reasons we recommend them:

  • Heating energy efficiency: Heat pumps use electricity to run mechanical parts, unlike electric furnaces or boilers, which use electricity to directly warm up air or water. This means that heat pumps only use a fraction of the power of other electric systems. They use less power than gas, oil, and propane heaters as well. A family of 4 can save up to 30% annually off their heating bills with a heat pump. Amana offers some of the most high-efficiency models available, far exceeding the U.S. government’s requirements for the Energy Star label.
  • Variety of options: Amana makes numerous sizes and types of heat pumps to fit any space or heating/cooling budget. With knowledgeable installers trained on Amana models, you are almost guaranteed to find a system that will match your home’s needs and your energy-saving plans.
  • Environmentally friendly: Amana heat pumps use R-410A, a chlorine-free refrigerant, to move heat into or out of your home. These heat pumps have little negative impact on the environment and produce no ozone-depleting emissions.
  • Unit replacement warranty: Amana offers a lifetime limited warranty that will pay for parts and replacement for 10 years. If you have regular maintenance for your unit and all necessary repairs done on time, you can expect the heat pump to last even longer than that.

Get started with heat pump installation

Because of the variety of Amana heat pumps available, you’ll need the assistance of installation experts to help you make the choice for the unit that will give you optimal heating and cooling. Call Clean Air Act today and talk to our specialists in heating services in Portland, OR. You’ll soon be on your way to enjoying all the benefits above and many more from your Amana heat pump.

Benefits of High Velocity Heating Systems

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

The technology of home heating is a constantly advancing field. Although many older heating systems still remain popular because of their flexibility and reliability—such as furnaces—new technology continues to become available to homeowners that gives them methods to find better comfort than ever before. One of these new systems now gaining popularity is the high velocity heating system.

We’ll explain briefly how high velocity heating systems work and how they can benefit your heating. For information about having a high velocity system installed, contact the Portland, OR heating system technicians at Clean Air Act today.

The high velocity system and how it can benefit you

A high velocity system, also called a small duct high velocity system (SDHV), uses high pressure forced air delivery through a network of mini-ducts that are much smaller than the standard ducts used for furnaces and heat pumps. By creating areas of high pressure, a SDHV is able to send out conditioned air from its ducts at extremely high velocity levels (2000 ft/sec) while using only half the airflow of a regular system.

What are the main advantages?

  • Less dust build-up: Because air is continually circulated from a constant fan, dust and other debris in the air will not build up inside the mini-ducts and can be easily filtered out. This means higher quality indoor air in your home.
  • Even temperatures: Standard forced-air systems blow hot air into a room, where it rises first to the ceiling. A high velocity system moves air from a high pressure area to a low pressure area at such a speed that it creates currents that distribute the air evenly from floor to ceiling. No more hot or cold spots.
  • Easier installation: Mini-ducts are small enough to install within your existing walls without major construction. You don’t have to redesign your home in order to fit larger ducts.
  • Quiet operation: Although you might think that something that’s “high velocity” would make a great deal of noise, these systems run much quieter than other air handlers. With noise dampeners, the sound can be reduced to nothing.

Look into high velocity installation

A high velocity system may sound too good to be true, but they’re real and they work. But before you rush out to have one installed, contact experts to look over your house and see if a high velocity heating system is the best choice for you and your budget. Contact Clean Air Act and let our trained staff help you with your heating in Portland, OR.

What to Look for in a Heating Repair Service

Friday, January 10th, 2014

In today’s information-saturated world, you only need to type the words “heating repair” into a search engine, or speak them into your smart phone to get a long list of potential contractors for hire. How do you navigate through the oceans of choices—especially when you know that many of the companies are probably inexperienced or they don’t offer the services you need?

Here are some criteria that we think is crucial for any heating repair service worth hiring. We think that after you consider these points, you’ll discover that Clean Air Act is one of your best picks for heating repair service in Portland, OR.

A few things to look for in a heating repair contractor:

  • 24-hour emergency service – Breakdowns and serious repair needs do not stick to a convenient timetable, and a heating repair service should be ready to help you out at unusual times, around the clock and around the calendar.
  • A variety of heating services – Check to see if the repair service you are interested in works on variety of heating systems: furnaces, heat pumps, geothermal, ductless, high velocity, etc. Repair technicians with a wide range of knowledge will not only perform better repairs, they will also be helpful when it is time for a replacement heater.
  • Duct cleaning – Proper heating for a home involves more than the heater unit itself. Most heaters use ductwork to distribute warmed air, and ducts contaminated with dust, dirt, and debris can not only damage your heater, it can reduce its effectiveness by as much as 30%. A good heating service will also offer duct cleaning so you will get the most from your heater and only need to deal with one contractor.
  • Maintenance program – The best way to care for your heater so you will need fewer repairs in the future is to enroll in a regular maintenance program. Look for a heating service that offers different maintenance programs that will fit your budget.

Contact Clean Air Act

If you want high quality heating repair in Portland, OR, then you won’t need to search far: Clean Air Act is here to serve you, 24 hours a day. We offer a three-tiered maintenance program, perform thorough duct cleaning, and work on numerous types of heating systems. Call us today to get started with the heating repair that will keep you satisfied all through the winter.