Why Is My Air Conditioner Blowing Warm Air?

Reasons Why Your AC System Might Not Be Working Right

When summer is at its peak, that’s when you rely on your air conditioner the most. So, it would be a huge disappointment to find your unit blowing warm air instead of providing you much-needed relief from the heat. This problem is common in HVAC systems. In some cases, you might even be able to fix it on your own.

air conditioning

Here are some tips on troubleshooting an air con unit that blows hot air, and how to fix them:

Thermostat

When you notice your AC blowing hot air, the first thing to check should be the thermostat. It might have been set to “heat” by accident, and this is easy to fix. Just switch the thermostat back to “cool”, then check if the unit starts to blow cool air.

You should also check that the batteries are functioning, and the temperature isn’t set too high.

Circuit Breaker

Once you’re done checking the thermostat settings and batteries, make sure that the unit has power. Do this by inspecting the electrical panel. An AC unit needs a significant amount of power to function. When there is excessive power demand, your circuit breaker may automatically shut off as a safety measure.

To fix the problem, find the electrical panel. Look for a blown fuse or tripped breaker. Flip the breaker off completely, then switch it on to power the AC. In case of a blown fuse, replace it. Contact an HVAC pro like Spartan Plumbing if the breaker still trips from time to time for no apparent reason.

Air Filter and Evaporator Coils

While air filters don’t directly affect air temperature, they can lead to evaporator coil problems when dirty. It may get clogged with debris and dust that can hamper proper cooling operation. Your evaporator coils may freeze. You may think that this may mean cooler air, but, in reality, this can cause hot air to flow from the motor.

To prevent the problem, replace your air filters every 30 to 60 days, depending on the filter type, household, and climate. To be sure, inspect your air filters each month. Hold them up to the light. If the light barely passes through, it is time to replace the filters.

If the evaporator coil is frozen, switch the unit off, then change the filter. Don’t turn the unit back on until the unit has thawed. If the coils start to freeze again, switch the AC off right away, then call a technician to properly troubleshoot the problem, which may be a refrigerant leak or a compressor issue.

Outdoor Unit Condenser Coils

Your next step is to check the outdoor unit. The outdoor evaporator coils need to have unimpeded airflow, just like the indoor coils. Thus, you should always maintain at least 2-ft of clearance around your outdoor condenser unit.

If the outdoor unit is blocked, switch the AC off at the source. Remove the bigger items blocking the unit by hand, and rinse the smaller debris with a garden hose.

Before the start of every summer, schedule an AC cleaning and tune-up with a pro. Make sure to include complete outdoor and indoor coil cleaning.

Refrigerant or Coolant

A low refrigerant level can be the main cause of air conditioning malfunction. Over or undercharged refrigerant may be due to a worn out service valve, poor assembly, or loose joints.

Unless you are a certified technician, never attempt to fix refrigerant problems on your own. A regular tune-up scheduled at the start of every cooling season is the best way to prevent refrigerant leaks.

As soon as you notice your unit blowing hot air, freezing on the refrigerant line, or making gurgling/hissing noise, you should call an HVAC specialist right away. 

Why Is My Air Conditioner Blowing Warm Air? was originally published on Spartan Plumbing of Tucson

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Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Cooling of Arizona

6211 E. Speedway Boulevard

Tucson, AZ 85712

(520) 617-1000

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Pros and Cons of Tankless Water Heaters

Gone are the days when you’d need to feed a large burner with firewood to heat the water in your home. Now, there are tankless water heaters available on the market.

They have many names like instant-on, inline, or flash water heaters. The idea of these devices is to heat water instantly as it goes through the heater rather than having constantly heated water sit in a tank waiting to be used. Inside is a coil that generates heat that increases the temperature of the water.

These high-tech devices are becoming more popular in households and businesses. They have many advantages compared to the old types of heaters. Still, they have some drawbacks that you should consider. Before deciding on getting one for your home, here’s a list of the pros and cons of tankless water heaters.

Pros

Hot Water in an Instant

You can get instantly heated water when you use a tankless water heater. Once you’ve flushed out the remaining cold water from your pipes, you can enjoy hot water immediately. It would only take a few seconds.

Longer-lasting

Standard water heaters can last up to about 10 years. These are high-quality heaters which are quite expensive. Tankless water heaters can last more than that, usually two times as long. This can save you a lot of money because you won’t need to replace it after a decade or less.

Energy-efficient

Unlike standard water heaters, tankless ones can ultimately save you more money. This is because of their energy-efficient technology.

Continuous Hot Water Supply

Water heaters that rely on storage tanks would run out after some time. This will happen a lot faster if many people in the household use hot water. Using tankless water heaters can give you a continuous supply of hot water. You’ll never have to worry about refilling water tank once it runs out.

Space-saving

Smaller homes can now enjoy hot water with tankless water tanks. They’re smaller than conventional water heaters. They’re also usually mounted on walls so it won’t take up any floor space.

No Standby Loss

Conventional water heaters continuously heat your water even when you’re not home. Tankless water heaters only heat water when needed. This results in lower utility costs.

Cons

Inconsistent Heating

Users often complain about the inconsistent temperatures their tankless water heater provides. The problem often stems from the inability to supply heated water to many outlets at the same time.

Expensive Initial Costs

Tankless water tanks are expensive. The cheapest ones you can find will cost about $1,000. More advanced models can cost even more. The installation fee of specialized tankless heaters is also pricy.

Not Advisable for Big Families

If you have a big family, you may need to install more than just one tankless water heater. That’s because it can only heat water a few gallons at a time. This is great for one person who’ll wash the dishes or take a shower.

May Require Some House Renovations

Installing a tankless water heater may require you to hire people to reroute your gas lines or make other changes to your house. This can add more costs and inconvenience to you and your family.

Tankless water heaters have many pros and cons. Getting one for your home is already a big decision to make. But, you should also think about hiring Spartan Plumbing to install the tankless heater.

You should always hire professionals who know what they’re doing, like the experts from Spartan Plumbing. Hiring untrained plumbers can increase your costs. It may also expose your tankless water heater to damage.

Always remember that cheaper, too-good-to-be-true services may end up in disaster. Only trust experts from a reliable company for your tankless water heater needs.

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Why You Shouldn’t Try Repairing a Slab Leak on Your Own

In general, plumbing concerns should be handled by professionals. This is particularly true in case of slab leaks. Thus, if you are not an expert plumber, you should not even attempt to perform a slab leak repair DIY-style.

What Are Slab Leaks?

Water lines in some homes run underneath concrete floors. A slab leak happens when one of these lines starts to leak. Because the problem is underground, this is difficult for an ordinary homeowner to address.

Signs Indicating a Slab Leak

Several indicators point to the possibility of a slab leak. These include the following:

  • Cracks in the walls or flooring
  • No hot water from your taps
  • Audible sounds of running water, although you have turned the water off
  • Low water pressure
  • Mildew
  • Rising water bills
  • Moisture under the carpet

Finding a Slab Leak

Without the benefit of professional help, and proper tools and equipment, you may only aggravate the problem if you try to find and fix the slab leak on your own. Professionals like Spartan Plumbing use electronic amplification equipment and electromagnetic pipeline locators to determine the leak’s exact location.

In the absence of this modern equipment, pinpointing the cause of the leak may result in massive and costly damage. Once the leak is found, the professional will then be able to repair the leak in a quick and easy manner.

Causes of a Slab Leak

In general, a slab leak occurs when there is a reaction between your copper pipes and drinking water. These reactions can be categorized into 4 groups:

  • Electrolysis – This happens when two different types of metals come into contact or when the soil is high in metal content.
  • Vibrations, Contraction, and Expansion from the Water Flow – These activities happen during the flow of water inside the pipes, and can trigger contact with gravel, concrete, and other pipes. The constant movement, over time, may create a leak.
  • High Water Pressure – When there is improper pipe installation under a slab, high water pressure may cause damage to the pipe. One good way to prevent this from happening is by installing a pressure-reducing valve.
  • Construction Issues – Defective workmanship during construction may also result in slab leaks.

How to Fix Slab Leaks

Several options for fixing slab leaks are available for your plumber to choose from, depending on the condition of the leak. These include the following:

  • Re-routing or Re-piping – This fix involves complete replacement of the water line that has leaks or problems. One of the most common solutions, this method is also most effective to use for an older plumbing system that has a history of leaking.
  • Epoxy Pipe Coating – Often used for systems plagued by numerous small leaks, this method calls for the application of in-place pipe coating inside the plumbing.
  • Spot Repair – The spot repair method requires opening the slab right where the leak is and completing the necessary repairs on the leaking pipe. This is often the most cost effective and popular option for new constructions.

How Long It Takes to Perform a Slab Leak Repair

In general, a slab leak repair takes no more than 2 days, but this will depend on the damage and pipe condition. It also includes the time it will take to locate the leak and prepare the site for work. Possible City of Tucson water bill adjustments.

If you notice any signs of a slab leak, you need to call a professional plumber for help right away. Delaying or attempting to do a DIY fix may only worsen the situation. Spartan Plumbing has trained professionals and advanced equipment to handle any case of slab leak, as well as all other types of plumbing problems.

Why You Shouldn’t Try Repairing a Slab Leak on Your Own was first published on free estimates from Spartan Plumbing

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Spartan Plumbing & HVAC

6211 E. Speedway Boulevard

Tucson, AZ 85712

(520) 617-1000

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Sewer Line Replacement Costs and Methods

Sewer lines are a vital system of your business, home, and the community where you live. Thus, any major repair or system replacement will have a big impact on the area. Many factors can affect the cost of replacing a sewer line. These include the materials used, length of required pipe for the job, and the method to be used in replacing the lines.

 

Sewer Line Replacement Methods, Costs, and Pros & Cons

Traditional Sewer Line Replacement Method

The traditional method of replacing a sewer line may be as simple as requiring the use of only a shovel. On the other hand, it can be very complicated, and may require the use of trenchers, backhoes, and other heavy equipment for digging the affected pipes, and then replacing them.

Any method that involves the use of heavy equipment is invasive. It can affect drive and walkways, lawns, fence lines, and landscaping in homes around the area where repair work is being done.

The cost to replace a sewer line using the traditional method is lower compared to the cost involved using the modern trenchless method of replacing a sewer line. But, it is more destructive and more labor-intensive than the modern method.

Trenchless Sewer Line Replacement Method

The initial cost to replace a sewer line using the trenchless method may be higher. But, it is minimally invasive, requires less time to complete, and involves the use of quality materials that can last for more than 50 years. It requires only 1 or 2 holes for installation. Thus, if your home is near the area where repair work is ongoing, you don’t have to worry about your landscaping, lawn, walkway, driveway, or any other area in your property being affected.

Materials Used for Trenchless Repairs

Compared to traditional sewer line replacement methods, a trenchless repair may cost more. But, it has more advantages. Also, the cost difference will be minimal if you factor in the cost to replace or repair affected landscaping, lawns, driveways, and walkways.

One material that makes it possible to have trenchless line replacements is the CIPP, or cured-in-place-pipe. It utilizes long cloth socks for lining the damaged sewer line, then infusing it with resin. When the resin sets in place, it hardens, and results in a brand-new pipe.

Applications that use CIPP include lateral lining, lateral reinstatement, and municipal pipe lining. You can push or pull the material into place. The number of access points the plumber or technician should make to change the pipe will depend on the method used.

Another material used for trenchless line repairs is the pipe bursting material. It is often used as a last resort, or when other methods have been used but failed.

Pipe bursting offers the advantage of having your sewer line replaced and of increasing the pipe’s diameter. This results to better volume flow. This is the perfect solution if you have a growing requirement for your property. You get what you need without having to install additional lines.

The sewer line replacement method is possible due to the material’s special splitting head. While being installed, it blasts the existing pipe out of its way. A new pipe attached to the splitting head’s back is then moved into place.

The method involves making two tiny holes in the ground. One is made at the entry point, while the other is made at the pipe’s end. This allows plumbing technicians to replace long pipe sections in a virtually seamless manner without having to tear up big sections of your property.

 

For more information on sewer line replacement methods and costs, or for any other plumbing concerns, Call Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Cooling t (520) 617-1000.

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Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Cooling of Arizona

6211 E. Speedway Boulevard

Tucson, AZ 85712

(520) 617-1000

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Tips on How to Maintain a Central Heating System

A central heating system makes the winter bearable. However, many homeowners tend to take it for granted.

When a heater fails, you can hardly wash your hands or handle the water that comes out of your tap. You have to bundle up before you can sleep. The cost of emergency repairs can also stress you out. Sadly, you can’t skimp on such services.

To prevent such hassles, you should get a high-quality and durable heater system. You should also ensure you use and maintain it properly. The following are tips on how to keep your split heating system running efficiently.

1. Check the filters.

These can affect the overall efficiency of your HVAC system. When it’s dirty and clogged with dust and debris, the AC or heater may not warm up your room temperature at all.

The good news is that it’s not all that hard to check and replace your filters. You can find online instructions to do these yourself. Your filters are usually installed at the end of the HVAC vents. When you remove the vent cover, you can already see the state your filter is in.

Replace your filters right away when they’re already dusty and worn out. Don’t go out to your hardware store just yet. It’s not a one-size-fits-all HVAC part. Write down the specifications of your filter. If you want to spend less on filters, look for disposable ones.

Inspect the filters at least once every three or four months. For your heater’s filters, replace them every month during winter. The same goes for your AC’s filters during summer. Find some additional HVAC system maintenance tips here.

2. Treat rusts right away.

Your plumbing and heating system will be more prone to rusting when it’s a few years old. Brownish water coming out of your pipes can be a sign of internal corrosion. You may also spot the problem on the exposed parts of your heater.

You should do a pipe checkup in the early weeks of fall. You won’t be using your heater during those times so it would not be much of a deal if repairs need to be done on it. If you see rust, you may apply anti-corrosive treatment.

In case the rusting is extensive, you should get plumbing experts to solve the problem. This will help you save time and money. If you fix the issue on your own, you may end up creating more damage and spread the rust to other areas.

3. Brush and wipe the exposed parts.

This is the simplest way to keep dust off your filters. Before you start cleaning, make sure the main switch of your heating system is turned off.

As you clean, look for possible signs of pest infestation. Do you hear rushing sounds inside the vents? There could also be wings and droppings. Pests like rats, squirrels and wild birds may leave nasty smell. If you suspect you might have a pest problem, contact a pest solution company.

Be careful when you clean and close up your HVAC system. You do not want to have scratches and dents on your HVAC unit.

4. Flush your heater.

This is one of the last maintenance tasks you should do. Some people would say this process is wasteful and expensive. However, it is necessary to clean the internal parts of your heater that you cannot reach.

It’s important for every homeowner to understand how their heating system works and to be familiar with the parts of their HVAC unit. If your installation team or service company did not properly orient you, you may ask a professional to conduct an inspection and run an assessment for you. Be present when he does this and ask to be oriented about your HVAC system.

Spartan Plumbing Heating & Cooling has professionals who are ready to assist you with your plumbing needs. They can conduct a professional inspection, maintenance, and repairs any day. They also have emergency numbers so you can call anytime you need them.

Tips on How to Maintain a Central Heating System was originally published to www.spartantucson.com – Spartan Plumbing

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Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Cooling

6211 E. Speedway Boulevard

Tucson, AZ 85712

(520) 617-1000

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Is It Time to Replace Your Home’s Plumbing?

Without a smoothly functioning plumbing system, your home will never be able to provide you comfort. Mostly hidden from view, you probably don’t notice it much unless you encounter leaks or a clogged drain.

Thousands of dollars are spent to install plumbing in a new house, and it costs just as much to repipe an old one. We recommend Perma-Liner for new piping installations in most cases. For some repairs, you will have to shell out a few hundred dollars. But know that there will come a time when you may need to replace your home’s plumbing system.

 

Nothing Lasts Forever

The type of material making up the pipes used in your home’s plumbing will give you an idea when it’s almost time to replace your system. Galvanized steel and brass have life expectancies of 50 years or less, while copper, cast iron and PVC pipes can last much longer.

You may be impressed by those numbers. But, just because they can doesn’t mean they will. A lot of other things can affect the lifespan of pipes such as quality of water, insulation, and use of chemical drain cleaners. Whether the pipes are used for supply or drainage will also influence their life expectancy.

Knowing that the age of your pipes isn’t the only factor to consider whether you should repair or not, how do you decide? Should you replace your home’s plumbing?

It’s Time for a Replacement When…

The water coming out of the faucet is any color but clear. Unless you have a well system, water should be clear. If it shows any tinge of brown and is dirty, it is a sure sign that your pipes are decaying.

In addition to the fact that dirty water isn’t good for you, corroded particles carried by the water could also be deposited within other sections of the pipe. Clogs can develop and soon, you may have to deal with a burst pipe.

A plumber coming into your house becomes too common. Needing a plumber every once in a while for repair is okay. Having your plumbing system inspected by professionals once a year is a good practice. But, if you find yourself regularly calling a plumber for help, it may be best in the long run for you and your pocket to replace your plumbing.

Mold and other signs of water damage appear. Pipe and fixture leaks are unavoidable but as long as they’re detected and fixed promptly, there’s no need for you to worry.

However, most of the pipes are hidden behind walls. If you find any sign of mold growth anywhere near the plumbing, you can be certain the pipes have been leaking for some time. Wet parts of the wall or ceiling and water-stained or warped flooring also indicate that your system needs some pipe replacement.

An unpleasant smell lingers in your bathroom. Sewage smells may be caused by clogged drains or pipes. Rotten smells may be due to build-up of bacteria somewhere in your system. The smell of urine could suggest a leak at the back of your toilet.

Sometimes, you can get rid of these unpleasant smells on your own, but more often than not, they’re associated with more serious problems. Thus, you may have to replace part of your plumbing system.

You are renovating your basement, bathroom, or kitchen. It’s a good idea to replace plumbing when you’re doing some home renovation. You may think it’s an unnecessary expense, but it can actually save you money by doing two things at once.

To keep the cost down, you may opt to replace only the exposed pipes as long as no other sign of leakage is observed.

Give Us a Call

If you live in Tucson and need professionals to assess, repair, or replace your home’s plumbing system, Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Cooling is just a phone call away.

Is It Time to Replace Your Home’s Plumbing? is available on Spartan Plumbing Heating and Cooling : Your Tucson Plumber and HVAC Company!

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Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Cooling

6211 E. Speedway Boulevard

Tucson, AZ 85712

(520) 617-1000

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Importance of Annually Flushing Your Water Heater

Your water heater is one of the most important appliances in your household. For one, it provides all your warm water needs – from hot water for cooking to hot water for bathing.

Like other home appliances, your water heater is also subject to the effects of wear and tear and may encounter problems from time to time. These include leaks, as well as little or no hot water. The good news is, these can be avoided by the simple task of flushing the appliance on an annual basis.

Annual Water Heater Flushing

As mentioned, it is ideal to flush your water heater once a year. The problem is, a lot of people neglect this important task when their home plumbing is fine, only to panic at the first sign of trouble.

Worse, by then, the problem is already in an advanced stage. It could require major repairs, or worse, replacement. Either of these would cost a significant amount of money. You can avoid major repairs and early replacement just by doing the simple maintenance task of flushing the water heater.

 

Sediment Build-up in the Water Tank

When you heat water, the calcium carbonate in the heater precipitates then settles down after some time. This leads to sediment build-up in the heater’s water tank. The build-up of sediment is often a slow process. However, if you live in a hard-water area, your water heater can fill up fast.

When there is excessive sediment build-up, it may result in your home not getting enough hot water or water that is not warm enough. The best way to prevent this from happening is by flushing your water heater on an annual basis.

 

Benefits of Annual Water Heater Flushing

Flushing your water heater yearly offers lots of benefits. These include:

  • Longer useful life of your water heater as you get rid of most water contaminants
  • Improved water heater system efficiency
  • Enhanced heating ability of the equipment with the removal of all cool patches
  • Increased heat performance of the water heater
  • Reduced internal corrosion

When air gets inside your water heater, it can cause the equipment to wear away inside. Iron sludge sediments will form in the radiators, as well as in other affected parts. The fragments will then attach themselves to the equipment coverings. This can cause early malfunction of the valves and pumps, as well as cool spots. It will likewise obstruct the hot water coils and heat exchangers.

One solution to the problem of sediment build-up is the yearly flushing of your water heater system. It will help protect your water heater system for the long term.

It is also a good idea to set up a power flushing device. This way, water will flow from the radiators down to the filter. It will then gather all the deposits of iron sludge as soon as they come to the boiler. This will reduce what will proceed to the boiler’s heat exchanger.

You can also add a corrosion remover solution that typically comes in a phosphoric acid base. This will help guaranty deep cleansing for your water heater.

 

Final Word

To sum everything up, a water heater is both a mechanical and electrical device. As such, you can expect it to develop problems in the future. In many cases, you do not need to replace it as soon as it shows signs of malfunctioning. A lot of times, all it takes is a minor remedy and a good understanding of the problem at hand.

For more information on annual water heater flushing and other plumbing concerns, get in touch with Spartan Plumbing. Set up an appointment for free consultation now!

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Spartan Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning

6211 E. Speedway Boulevard

Tucson, AZ 85712

(520) 617-1000

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