Understanding Heat Pumps
Buying and installing a new heating and cooling system in the home is a big choice. New equipment and its installation are expensive, and owners will have to live with the new system for decades. Often, this locks owners into a particular utility that they use to heat their home, and with fluctuating energy prices and constantly increasing environmental regulations, burning fossil fuels for heat is continually getting more expensive.
To combat rising fuel prices, new technology is constantly being developed and improved. One of the most exciting advancements in heating and cooling has been the development of the heat pump. Here is a quick article on heat pumps to explain what they are and why they may be the perfect choice for homeowners upgrading their heating and cooling systems.
What are Heat Pumps?
A heat pump is a revolutionary new way to heat and cool the home. While the technology has existed for a while, the system wasn't practical until recently. With new developments, heat pumps have been improved, so many people are starting to switch. But what exactly is a heat pump?
To understand a heat pump, think about feeling the heat coming off an air conditioner's outdoor unit during the summer. This heat is from the inside of the home. Now, imagine if the process was reversed. Could the heat being dumped inside the home be reversed to heat the home instead? This is how a heat pump allows for efficient summer cooling and heating in winter.
Benefits of Heat Pump Installation
Heat pumps have become the fastest-growing heating and cooling system type worldwide for several reasons. First, they are the simplest type of HVAC system. Unlike a furnace, a heat pump uses the same blower and ductwork as an outdoor unit. This means there are fewer moving parts, so they generally last longer.
Probably the biggest selling point for a heat pump is the cost reduction compared to resistance heating and fossil fuels. Heat pumps require only electricity, so most homeowners do away with their gas bills. As gas prices fluctuate and steadily rise, it can be easy to see how fast the savings can add up.
Signs That Heat Pump Repairs are Needed
Heat pumps are generally more reliable than other heating and cooling systems because the machinery works all year. Central furnaces are cycled off during the warm months, allowing them to develop problems. Running a heat pump year-round keeps it in good operating condition. However, they still are subject to repairs. Some of the signs that heat pump repairs are needed can be:
- Long cycles
- High electricity bills
- Inadequate heating or cooling
- Poor indoor air quality
- Unusual sounds or noisy operation
Luckily, the signs that heat pumps are struggling are familiar to any homeowner who has owned an air conditioner. If something seems wrong, it probably is. Call a professional before things get worse!
About Bedell Home Services
Bedell Home Services handles heat pump installations and repairs. They have over 35 years of experience helping owners save money on heating and cooling costs. Call today for HVAC installation and repair in Carmel, IN.
What Is Corrosion?
Corrosion is when a material breaks down over time due to its surroundings. It usually refers to when a metal's surface oxidizes––or turns into a substance with at least one oxygen molecule. A corroded pipe will have a brownish-reddish appearance where some of the metal flakes off. This compromises the pipe's integrity and can lead to leaks.
However, corrosion isn't an inevitable part of a plumbing system's aging. Homeowners can employ various steps to slow down this process or even reverse it. Some considerations include routinely maintaining the plumbing system, using water softener, and installing protective linings. A professional can explain these methods during an inspection.
Coatings and Protective Linings Can Prevent Corrosion
Over time, pipes can weaken internally from hard water or prolonged use. Instead of replacing the pipe, homeowners can install coatings and protective linings. These fall under "trenchless pipeline repairs," which don't require plumbers to dig trenches to fix the problem. They usually dig two small holes and go from there.
Here are some things to know about getting coatings and protective pipe linings:
- These methods are ideal for pipes with minimal damage. If a pipe is already too corroded, a plumber may suggest replacing the section rather than relining it. A severely damaged pipe would break if one attempted to reline it.
- Pipelining extends a plumbing system's lifespan. A relined pipe can last up to 50 years because the epoxy slows down the natural corrosion process. It can also make a pipe impervious to rust and root intrusion.
- Pipelining is cost-effective. If a homeowner's on a budget, relining or coating a pipe may be cheaper than getting a new pipe altogether. Because it's a trenchless pipe repair, homeowners don't also have to spend money on filling trenches or landscaping a dug-up portion of the yard.
Use Water Softener
Hoosiers often deal with "hard water" in their showers, sinks, and hoses. Hard water is when water contains calcium, magnesium, and other corrosive materials. This makes tap water taste less than ideal, plus it can affect how efficiently dishwashers work, leading to unsightly spots.
The chemicals in hard water can cause a pipe to corrode faster than it normally would under ideal conditions. This is why many plumbing professionals suggest using a water softener. These under-the-sink devices remove chemicals from the water and essentially purify it. This prevents a pipe from rusting and corroding, saving both money and frustration.
Schedule Annual Maintenance Checks
Here are some benefits of scheduling an annual maintenance visit with a plumber:
- They can check for corroded pipes. The sooner a professional finds a corroded pipe, the sooner they can render necessary repairs. This can prevent burst pipes, leaks, and other problems.
- They can check the water's chemical composition. A homeowner may live for years with hard water and go, "Well, that's just the way it is." A plumber can run simple tests to check what chemicals are in the water. They may suggest installing a water softener if they find excessive calcium or magnesium.
- They can suggest other home improvement measures. A plumbing system's pipes are just one part of the system itself. A plumber can run appropriate testing on the home's water heater, HVAC system, and appliances to check for any problems.
About Bedell Home Services
Bedell Home Services offers 24-hour help to those living in Carmel, Indiana. These professionals offer discounted services, online scheduling, and more than 30 years of experience. They also exclusively hire licensed and bonded service people. Call Bedell for expert plumbing service!