Your Martinsburg HVAC System’s Condensate Drain Line

There are a lot of components involved in a properly working Martinsburg HVAC system. One component that many people overlook is the drain line for the air conditioning system. Your air conditioning system has condenser coils that sweat the water drawn from the air in your home as it is cooled by your AC unit. These coils produce a significant volume of water, especially when it humidity is high, so a condensate drain pan is installed to capture the moisture and keep it from damaging your home.

A drain line from the drain pain out of your home is required to transfer all that extra water, but it can easily become clogged by debris in the area or simply from heavy condensation. If this happens, the drain line might need to be cleared or even replaced.

Inspecting your Condensate Drain Line

Full inspection of your drain line involves checking quite a few components, so I will point you to Inspectapedia for a thorough rundown of what you should look for (and some pictures to show you what you don’t want to see). But, in short, you want to look for evidence that your condensate drain is overflowing or that the liquid in your drain pan is backing up into the air handler.

You may also notice that there is no liquid coming out of the condenser – a sign that there may be a major problem in the system that needs immediate inspection. If this happens, make sure you check for blockages and if nothing is present, call a Martinsburg air conditioning contractor.

Cleaning Your Drain Line

Each year, it is recommended that you clean your drain line to make sure it is clear and ready for the summer’s heavy cooling and high humidity. The simplest way to do this is to disconnect the drain line and attach a hose to blow the line clear. This can get a little messy, so make sure you dress for the occasion. Another option if you have a wet/dry vac is to attach the hose to the end of the drain line and suck free any moisture still in there. Most wet/dry systems have attachments for drain line clearing or you can order one.

If your drain line is not clearing properly or you think there may be structural damage suffered during the winter, call Larry & Sons for a more thorough inspection. If you have regular maintenance done on your AC system each spring, this should be part of the process so make sure you write down any questions you have for when the contractor visits your home.

Marlowe Energy Saving Tip: Common Causes of Drafts in Your Home

If you find your Marlowe home’s heating bill is routinely too high, there is a common reason. Most of the time it is due to air leaks and drafts in your home that allow warm air to escape and cold air to enter. Here are some common causes of such leaks and what you can do about them.

Sources of Drafts in Your Home

There are obvious drafts and less obvious ones. Let’s start by looking at the drafts that are most obvious:

  • Outlets and Plates
  • Windows
  • Baseboards
  • Attic
  • Air Conditioners
  • Weather Stripping

You can probably do a quick inspection of your home by yourself to check for these potential air leaks and find whatever may be causing the problem. The easiest way to check for drafts is simply to hold your hand up to the space and check for a change in air flow. You can also get a portable thermometer and see if the air temperature is different in those areas than it is in the center of the room or by the thermostat.

Insulation Inspection

Insulation is probably already in your home, but with time it can thin, get leaks or tear. Look for gaps in insulation or drafts coming through. You can inspect your insulation as well and make sure that it is still holding as much heat in as it was originally rated for. If you know that your insulation values are too low or that the insulation is particularly old, it may be a good time to have it inspected.

Making Changes

If you notice easy to fix drafts in your Marlowe home, fix them immediately and you’ll be shocked by how much energy you save.

If you have any questions about the effectiveness of your heating system, give Larry & Sons a call today!

Hiring a Jefferson Plumber: What to Look for

There are plenty of situations in which you will need the services of a professional plumber in your Jefferson home. And when you have a plumbing emergency, you really need it to be addressed as quickly as possible. But how do you know which plumber to call? It is likely that all of them can get the job done, but you want to make sure you do not have to pay too much and that the work is done right so that the same problem does not recur in the near future.

Since an emergency repair needs to be done quickly, it is a good idea to come up with a list of possible plumbers ahead of time. Of course, if you are hiring a plumber to work on a new construction installation or home remodeling project, you will have more time to research your options. But it is important to note that, while all plumbers can likely perform repairs, it is better to get someone who specializes in that type of work you need to have done.

When you are evaluating your plumber options, one of the first things to check is whether or not they have all necessary state certifications and licenses. Even if these licenses are not legally required for a plumber to work in your area, it is better to hire someone who has them because you can have greater confidence that they are aware of all of the local codes and restrictions.

If you are hiring a plumber for a home renovation or installation job, be sure to have them come out to examine your house and give you a detailed estimate for the materials and costs involved in the process. You may even want to get several estimates from different plumbers before you make your final decision.

And do not forget one of the greatest resources you have when searching for a plumber – your family and friends. Gathering recommendations from someone who has used a particular plumber before is an excellent way for you to narrow down the potential options and find a Jefferson plumber you can have confidence in. Our motto is “Where Our Customers Send Their Friends” for a reason, so ask around and then give Larry & Sons a call today!

Harpers Ferry Plumbing Guide: How to Stop a Toilet from Overflowing

An overflowing toilet is a really unpleasant problem to have in your Harpers Ferry home, and one you will undoubtedly want to correct right away. Toilets are reliable in that they tend to last a long time and not act up much, but when yours does start to malfunction, you pay attention right away.

To start with, examine the root cause of the overflow problem. There are three major causes of overflow: a clogged or blocked drain that does not allow the toilet to flush properly, an improperly adjusted float that allows the tank to overfill and a blocked vent pipe that replaces the air in the pipe after each flush.

Each of these requires a different course of action, so let’s discuss each individually.

If the drain is blocked, you will probably know right away. For one, water will overflow from the toilet’s bowl rather than the tank. For another, there will probably be quite a mess. Treating this type of overflow problem is straightforward—remove the clog. For simple clogs, a plunger and some elbow grease will get it done. Another trick is to stick the open mouth of an empty two liter bottle into the drain and squeeze. The blast of air can knock the clog free.

If your toilet is clogging and overflowing frequently, however, the problem may not be with the drain or with anything you are doing. It may be that the vent pipe is clogged. A vent pipe moves external into the plumbing system to replace the air that is pumped out with each flush. When it is blocked, the toilet can’t flush properly, which can lead to overflowing. If you have trouble with frequent clogging, call a Harpers Ferry plumber to inspect the situation.

In both of those situations, the toilet bowl will overflow. Another possibility is that the tank overflows, which is a different kind of problem. This is often cause by the filler float being set too high, so the tank fills with too much water. You can fix this by simply adjusting the mechanism inside the tank that controls the level of the float.

Whether it’s one of these three, or something else entirely, when your toilet overflows, be sure to check it out and get it fixed right away.

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