Sound Heating and Air Conditioning Inc. Blog: Archive for February, 2014

3 Common Types of Hydronic Heating Repair

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Hydronic heating consists of a series of metal tubes planted beneath the floorboards of your home along with reflective tiling. Hot water is pumped through the tubes, which warm your home directly through the floors instead of relying on forced air like traditional systems do. Installation can be very involved, but once the system is set up, it’s very efficient and cost-friendly. There are no drafts or cold spots, and the system won’t spread dust or germs the way forced-air furnaces do. But like any other appliance, they suffer their share of problems and damage. Here in Tacoma, heating repair services are on call to handle any issues with your hydronic heating system. Here are 3 common types of hydronic heating repair:

  • Faulty pump. The pump is necessary to circulate the water through the system. Without it, the water won’t stay warm and the system won’t be able to effectively heat your home. The pump can become jammed or clogged, or the motor running it may suffer from some kind of short. Electrical problems can shut off power to the pump as well.
  • Air venting valves. Hydronic heating systems require air venting valves to release excess air from the system. When the valves malfunction, they either seal shut or stay wedged open, both of which will seriously compromise your system’s ability to function.
  • Leaks. Hydronic heating systems are designed to be water-tight, but over lengthy periods of time, leaks can develop in weak fittings or connections. A leak is a serious issue because it can damage the surrounding floor and other furnishings in your home. If you detect one, shut off the system and contact a repair technician immediately.

Heating repair services in Tacoma, WA can be performed by the experts at Sound Heating. We handle common types of hydronic heating repair as well as more unusual problems, and our trained staff has years of experience in dealing with hydronic systems. If you own a hydronic heating system and need it examined by the best, pick up the phone and give us a call today. You’ll be glad you did!

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Benefits of Wireless Thermostats to Your Heating System

Monday, February 17th, 2014

In Puyallup, heating systems still depend on thermostats to gauge the temperature and tell the heater to turn on and off. Most people still think of thermostats as wired models set in one specific point in the house, and indeed such models are quite popular. But they’re not the only type of thermostat on the market. Wireless thermostats get rid of the old models where thermostats were stuck to one part of your wall and needed to be powered by electrical wires. Wireless units offer a number of tangible advantages over other types of thermostats, though as always you as the homeowner need to decide if they’re right for you.

Here’s a quick list of the benefits of wireless thermostats to your heating system:

  • More accurate readings. Wired thermostats run into big trouble when they’re poorly placed. Drafts, cold sports and similar hiccups in your interior temperature can wreak havoc on your ability to effectively condition the air. Wireless thermostats make that much easier to correct. If the thermostat can read the temperature where it is, just move to somewhere where you can.
  • Ease of installation. Along those lines, a wireless thermostat is very easy to install and doesn’t require the services of an electrician. You can put it together fairly easily and as long as is establishes a strong signal with the furnace, it should respond as effectively as a wired thermostat will. You
  • Tailored temperatures. If you have a centralized furnace, you’ve likely experienced some frustration at your thermostat’s “one size fits all” approach to heating. If you’re too warm and someone elsewhere in the household is too col, the portable thermostat makes for an easy fix. Simply move it into the parts of the house that you’re using at the time and the temperature should work the way you need it to.

The benefits of wireless thermostats to your heating system often trump the extra cost involved, and with a reliable technician in your corner, you can set on up to function with maximum reliability. The Puyallup heating systems specialists like the ones at Sound Heating can help. Give us a call today and let us show you what we can do!

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The Original Valentine’s Day Greeting Cards

Friday, February 14th, 2014

It’s hard to imagine Valentine’s Day without the traditional greeting cards, whether accompanying a gift of flowers and candy, or sent between children in a school room. For commercial greeting card companies, February 14th is as important to them as the December holidays, Easter, and Mother’s Day.

Valentine’s Day as a celebration of romantic love predates printed greeting cards by a few centuries. In fact, the reason that sending romantic greeting cards became popular was because of the most un-romantic thing you can imagine: a reduction in postage rates.

In 1765, Parliament authorized the creation of “Penny Posts” that used a uniform rate of one old penny per letter throughout Great Britain and Ireland. Printers took advantage of the ease with which people could send letters to each other on Valentine’s Day by crafting cards with love poems on them. Many of these verses were collected in 1797 in the book The Young Man’s Valentine Writer, which was a resource for the lover with a romantic soul but not the most confident poetry style.

By the mid-19th-century, the Valentine’s Day greeting card was flourishing across England. Although people still followed a tradition of creating handmade Valentine’s Day cards from lace, ribbons, and flowers, commercially produced cards now overtook them. In 1835, the English post office mailed 60,000 valentines. As production expenses dropped, the English card manufacturers branched out creatively with humorous and sometimes vulgar cards… many of which we would find startlingly familiar in the 21st century. One of the common jokes on these cards was to design them to look like marriage certificates or court summons.

Across the Atlantic, the United States was slower to embrace the popular British custom. It wasn’t until 1847 that a U.S. printer mass-produced greeting cards for Valentine’s Day. Only two years later, American journalists noted how rapidly people in the country had embraced the tradition, turning into a fad that has never died down. The woman who printed the first U.S. Valentine’s Day card, Esther Howland, is today recognized by the Greeting Card Association with the annual “Esther Howland Award for a Greeting Card Visionary.”

The greeting card industry certainly has reason to thank Ms. Howland. Her idea of going into business printing romantic greeting cards, which came to her after she received a traditional English valentine when she was 19 years old, now sells 190 million cards in the U.S. every year. That number doesn’t include the smaller exchange cards used in elementary school classrooms, which would swell the number to 1 billion. (Who receives the most Valentine’s Day cards each year? Teachers!)

Whether you send out Valentine’s Day cards—handmade, store-bought, digital—or not, we at Sound Heating hope you have a happy February 14th.

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3 Options for Hydronic Installation

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

Hydronic heating is a form of radiant heating, warming the space by transferring energy directly rather than depending upon blown air the way traditional gas furnaces do.  In the case of hydronic system they use heated water to do it, which makes for a very effective and efficient form of heat. In Washington towns like Puyallup, heating installation services can set up a hydronic system very easily, and considering the challenges our wet climate makes for keeping homes cozy and warm, a good hydronic system could be the perfect fit for your home. But not all hydronic systems are alike, and you should have some idea of which types are available so as to make the most informed decision.

Here are 3 options for hydronic installation in Puyallup, WA:

  • Underfloor tubing. This type of system installs a series of tubes directly beneath the floorboards of the room, along with a series of heat-conducting panels. They warm the room directly through the furnishings (and feet) in the room. Installation tends to be quite complex, but when it’s complete, the resulting system is hidden from sight and takes up very little space The thorough coverage provided by the system means that heating is very even as well.
  • Baseboard heaters. Baseboard heaters are easier to install than underfloor tubing. They involve baseboards placed along the base of the wall, pulling in cool air from the room and heating it via a series of pipes and tubes circulating hot water. The downside is that they’re more obtrusive and don’t quite heat the room as evenly as underfloor tubing. But they’re easy to maintain and don’t cost as much to install.
  • Hydronic boilers. Boilers are the oldest and most familiar form of hydronic heater, using a centralized boiler to heat the water, which then circulates to radiators and similar components via pipes. They’re simpler to install than other types of hydronic system, though they can still be quite obtrusive and aren’t always as efficient as heating the home.

Regardless of the options for hydronic installation you choose, the experts at Sound Heating can help. We operate in Puyallup, heating installation includes hydronic systems, and we’re dedicated to you complete satisfaction at every turn. Give us a call today and let us show you what we can do!

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