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Northwest Ohio & Southeast Michigan

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Heating (12)

In some home, as much as 40 percent of the air from the central heating and cooling system does not make it to the rooms it is supposed to reach. The main reason is leaking air ducts, and it's one of the most common reasons that some rooms never feel comfortable even as the furnace or air conditioner seems to run much more than it should. Leaking air ducts waste energy and cost you money. So what can you do?

Your home's ductwork is a maze of joints, curves and creases that provides many places for air to leak out. A professional HVAC technician can find these leaks and offer fixes to improve airflow throughout your home. One option is professional duct sealing. Duct sealing involves measuring the rate of air entering and returning in through the HVAC system, then sealing the ducts form the inside using sprayed on polymers that fill the gaps and stop leaks.

The first step to fixing air duct leaks is to have Gibson's inspect the efficiency of your HVAC system. We can identify any problem areas and recommend solutions to reduce air leaks. Call today to learn more.
Learning Thermostats, or smart thermostats, have been around for a while now, and they keep getting smarter. Here are some of the features you will find that can help keep your home more comfortable while also reducing your energy usage.
  1. Learns your routine. Built-in sensors track activity in the home and use algorithms a custom, auto-adjusting temperature schedule based on those movements in the home. If you turn down the heat before bed, the thermostat learns this routine.
  2. It knows when you're away. Using your smartphone's location and sensors in the home, a learning thermostat can switch to economy mode to save energy.
  3. Tracks energy usage. Knowing your energy usage history can help you better manage your heating and cooling schedule and save on your utility bill.
  4. Early warning of an emergency. If the temperature drops unexpectedly when it's below freezing because your furnace is not working, you will be warned before pipes freeze and your home is damaged.
Upgrading to a learning thermostat is easy, and can make your home more comfortable and energy efficient.

With the increasing popularity of heat pumps in some areas of the U.S., many homeowners are asking if a heat pump is a good option for their home. Here is an overview of how heat pumps differ from traditional gas furnaces.

The main difference between a furnace and a heat pump is that a heat pump can be reversed to either heat or cool a home. A heat pump consists of two parts: an indoor unit called an air handler and an outdoor unit that is similar to a central air conditioner – called a heat pump. A compressor circulates refrigerant that absorbs and releases heat as it travels between the indoor and outdoor units.

Depending on the season a heat pump exchanges the cool air with warm air, or the other way around. Even air that's seems cold can have heat energy. When it's cold outside the heat pump extracts the heat and transfers into the home. When it’s hot outside, it reverses the flow to work like an air conditioner, removing heat from your home.

When considering a heat pump it's important to understand that, unlike a gas furnace which creates heat, a heat pump can only exchange heat, and will be unable to deliver a high level of warm air that is required to heat homes in cold climates like the Chicagoland area.

Have questions about heat pumps? Call Gibson's Heating and Plumbing. We're here to help.
If you're in the market for a new home there are many items you will want to check to ensure there are no hidden surprises. One of the most important is the heating system. By taking some time to ask the current homeowner questions and have the furnace inspected, you can avoid disappointment when the cold weather arrives and it's time to switch on the heat. Here's what you should check.

1. Turn on the furnace and listen for noises. Squeaks and rattles could indicate a mechanical problem, a lack of maintenance, or a furnace that has nearing the end of it's lifespan.

2. Ask the real estate agent or homeowner for the age of the furnace. A gas furnace will usually last around 15-20 years. If it's over 15 years old it could be more expensive to operate and may incur more repairs. A new furnace may be more cost effective.

3. Check the unit's EnergySTAR® rating. Sometimes the label will still be attached to the unit. If not, the unit's serial number can be used to contact the manufacturer and identify its efficiency rating. The annual operating cost is likely to be higher on older furnaces.

Finally, for your peace of mind, it's a good idea to have the home's heating and cooling system inspected by a qualified heating and cooling technician to identify any potential problems that could end up costing you money in repairs or higher utility bills.

Have questions about heating systems? Call Gibson's Heating and Plumbing. We're here to help.
Traditionally, central heating and cooling systems operated at one or two speeds. An important important advancement in home heating and cooling over the 10 years is the introduction of variable speed blower technology. "Variable speed" simply refers to the operation of the blower motor, which operates at different speeds to more accurately control the flow of conditioned air throughout the home.

Variable speed heating and cooling systems offer many advantages

1. Improved Comfort and Air Quality
Regulated airflow provides improved control of temperature, humidity, and air distribution throughout the home. By allowing for continual airflow even when the system is not heating or cooling, air can be circulated and cleaned more effectively.

2. Quieter operation
When a single stage furnace turns on, you'll know it! There is a burst or air that blows out of heat registers at full force. A variable speed motor comes on gradually and operates very quietly.

3. Better Efficiency
Variable speed motors consume about 75 watts of energy per hour, while a conventional blower will consume around 400 watts per hour. This adds up to significant savings over the course of a year.

Have questions about upgrading your home's heating and cooling system? Give Gibson's a call, we can help.
Ductless heating and cooling systems are popular options when you need to heat a home without ductwork or are adding an addition and don't want to deal with the expense or complexity of upgrading an existing central heating and cooling system.

Here are some advantages of mini-split systems over conventional heating and cooling systems.
  1. Cleaner Air - unlike central heating and AC systems, mini-split systems don't have extensive ductwork that can trap dirt and dust, making for cleaner, healthier air.
  2. Greater Efficiency - Mini-splits reduce the heat and energy loss that is common in ducted systems.
  3. Flexible installation - Because the air handler is compact, it can be attached to a wall or suspended from a ceiling, and in most cased requires only a 3-inch hole to the outside. This makes it a great option for three-season porches, manufactured and mobile homes.
  4. Zoned For Comfort - While most forced air systems operate best when utilizing all the air volume in the home, ductless systems can simply be turned to heat or cool rooms that are occupied.
  5. Convenience Features - Most mini-split systems come with features like remote, controls, timers and more.
Have questions about ductless mini-split systems? Call Gibson's Heating and Plumbing, we can help.

Wednesday, 06 January 2016 22:52

Tips For Heating a Cold Basement

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Many homeowners who convert a basement into a living space find it difficult to providing adequate levels of heat. Being the lowest space in the home, basements present a special challenge. When finishing a basement the most common heating option is to utilize the existing central heating unit by expanding the ductwork and ventilation system. It's important to ensure that the heating source is properly sized 

Another option for homeowners looking to provide heating as well as ambiance is to install a gas fireplace. If an existing chimney is available it's a simple installation process. Otherwise, ventless gas fireplaces are another popular option.

Other basement heating options include mini-split systems (also called ductless systems) that require no ductwork. Radiant baseboard heating is another option that is simple to install. Keep in mind that while electric mini-split systems and baseboard heat can be less expensive to install, depending on how large a space you're heating, it can cost significantly more to heat with electric compared to natural gas.

Have questions about heating your basement? Give Gibson's Heating and Plumbing a call, we can help.

When the time comes to replace your old gas furnace with a new unit, energy efficiency is probably at the top of your feature list. Over the last decade or so gas furnace technology has advanced considerably, with AFUE efficiency ratings now exceeding 95 percent. By comparison, furnaces manufactured in the 1990s had efficiency ratings in the 60 percent range. One of the main reasons for the dramatic increase in efficiency is modulating gas furnace technology.

Traditional single or two-stage furnaces operate at fixed rates and will often exceed the preset temperature before shutting off, resulting in wide temperature swings. A modulating furnace is able to adjust it's gas input, inducer speed, and blower airflow to operate at 1 percent increments from 35 to 100 percent, providing more accurate control over temperature. While it may run more often, it can do so at a lower rate than a two-stage furnace.

The advantages of modulating furnaces include increased comfort, reduced operating costs and quieter operation. With a two-stage furnace you may notice a change in temperature right before your furnace turns on and right after the furnaces shuts off. With a modulating gas furnace, the temperature change will be imperceptible.

When choosing a furnace for your home look for the EnergyStar® label. The EnergyStar rating is a trusted, government-backed symbol for energy efficiency that helps consumers save money and protect the environment through energy-efficient products and practices. Have questions about high efficiency gas furnaces? Give us a call, we're here to help.

To best understand how zoning works to keep your home comfortable it helps to think of how a lighting system works. There isn't just one light switch that controls light for your entire home, rather there are switches in every room to provide light only where it's needed at any given time and place. Having one thermostat to control the heating or cooling for an entire home provides little control and wastes energy. Zoning solves this problem by providing greater control over a home's heating and cooling system. 

The first part of a zoning system is a series of motorized dampers that open and close based on the demands of each zone. These dampers are inserted into air ducts or can be installed at the air outlet for each room or zone. Multiple dampers can be controlled together for a single zone if multiple air ducts serve a single room or zone.

The brains of the home zoning system is the main control panel and thermostats. Most homes have a single thermostat. In a zoned home as new zones are added, a thermostat to control the heating, cooling and fan operation is added to each individual zone. These zone thermostats and dampers are connected to a central control panel which is connected to the home's HVAC Unit. Instead of using a traditional central thermostat, the zoning control panel allows the unit to be managed by multiple thermostats.

As each thermostat calls for a temperature change, the panel will open or close the dampers for a zone, while activating the furnace or air conditioner to supply air to only that zone. When all zones thermostats are within their preferred range, the panel will shut off the furnace or air conditioner.

Have questions about home zoning or your heating and air conditioning system? Call Gibson's Heating and Plumbing. We're here to help.
Fall is here and now is the time to replace your dirty furnace air filter. But what kind of filter should you buy? When it comes to choosing the right furnace air filter, there are many options available. The efficiency of furnace filters is measured on the MERV scale, or Minimum Efficiency Reporting Values, which rates filter efficiency on a scale of 1-20.

On the low end of the cost scale and MERV scale with a rating of 1-3 are disposable fiberglass filters. Made of 1-inch thick fiberglass, these filters are designed to prevent larger particles of dust, lint, and other debris from damaging your furnace.

Disposable pleated furnace filters are probably the most popular option. These filters are made from polyester or cotton paper and remove smaller particles like mold spores and mites, but should be changed frequently to avoid clogging and reducing airflow to the furnace. Pleated filters have a MERV rating of 6 and cost more than fiberglass filters.

The most effective furnace air filters are disposable or permanent electrostatic filters. With a MERV rating of 10 or higher, they offer highly effective filtration and are recommended for homes with persons with allergies or upper respiratory conditions.

Have questions about furnace filters and indoor air quality? Call Gibson's Heating and Plumbing.

Furnace & Boiler Service, Repairs & Installation

  • Emergency Heating Services 24/7
  • We Repair All Makes & Models
  • Furnace Repairs, Sales & Installation
  • We Carry A Complete Line Of Innovative American Standard Heating Systems & Products
  • Zoning
  • Heat Pumps
  • Programmable Thermostats & Talking Thermostats
  • Carbon Monoxide Detectors
  • Custom Duct Work & Duct Cleaning
  • Humidifiers & Whole House Humidification Systems
  • Indoor Air Quality
  • Electronic Air Cleaners
  • High Efficiency Air Cleaning Systems
  • UV Lights
  • Annual System Tune-Ups & Safety Inspections
  • Maintenance & Service Plans

Why Choose Gibson's?

Check Live operators – no answering machines Check We listen to your needs & talk in non-technical language
Check Convenient appointments made around your schedule Check We follow up to make sure you are 100% satisfied
Check Friendly, uniformed technicians Check We stand by everything we do – NO EXCEPTIONS!
Check We use floor protectors and thouroughly clean the work area  
 Live operators – no answering machines
 Convenient appointments made around your schedule
 Friendly, uniformed technicians
 We use floor protectors and thouroughly clean the work area
 We listen to your needs & talk in non-technical language
 We follow up to make sure you are 100% satisfied
 We stand by everything we do – NO EXCEPTIONS!

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