fall1mFall allergy sufferers can suffer from a host of symptoms that include itchy watery eyes, runny nose and dry throat. Many people head inside thinking it will alleviate their symptoms, but in many cases the indoor air quality is just as poor as the outdoors. Here are just a few suggestions to help with your indoor air quaility.

 

FOUR STEPS TO HELP YOU STAY COMFORTABLE THIS FALL:

  1. Running an air-purification unit can remove even the smallest of particles from the air you breathe. HEPA filters remove the most particles, but filter-free units have electronically charged plates that collect particles quite well too. During fall allergy season, you can run your unit around the clock to improve your air quality.
  2. Furnace filters should be replaced every two to three months, but it’s wise to change them more often when fall allergies are in full swing. Carbon filters can help remove odors and outdoor pollution from your indoor air quality in addition to a regular filter that will remove particles.
  3. Vacuum your floors every few days to keep pollens at a minimum indoors. Many vacuums on the market have HEPA filters built into them to minimize the amount of irritants that are spread back into the air. If you have a Central Vac system in your home you should have it cleaned. A central vac system that is cleaned regularly will ensure optimum function with increased suction and will extend the life of your unit. This will significantly improve the air quality in your home. By removing these allergens from your central vacuum system, it will prevent the redistribution of these harmful particles from recirculating back into your home, creating a truly healthier environment for you and your family.
  4. Pollen can find its way onto your skin, hair and clothing, so after your day is finished it’s best to bathe and change your clothing as soon as possible to prevent allergens from spreading to your bed or furniture.

Contact Castle Maintenance 403-250-5172 for more information on how you can help combat fall allergies and stay comfortable in your home.

At Castle Maintenance Our goal is to help educate our customers about the benefits of regular Home Maintenance

 

DO NOT NEGLECT YOUR FURNACE FurnaceCleaning[1]

Gas furnaces are reasonably easy to operate and maintain, but they do require regular upkeep to stay in good working condition. Gas furnaces can be dangerous if they are neglected and cause costly unnecessary repair bills. As well Gas leaks if not caught and addressed can have deadly consequences.

 

 

 

Does your gas furnace need cleaning?

Cleaning is a regular task for proper gas furnace maintenance. Castle Maintenance has full service furnace and vent cleaning. Included in a furnace and duct cleaning service from Castle Maintenance, our technicians will:

  • Clean the fan and heat exchangers
  • Motor check and maintenance
  • Clean the igniters
  • Clean the sensors
  • Check the thermo couple
  • Clean the coils (high effienct furnaces)
  • Oil the motor
  • Clean furnace chimney
  • Check the cycling and fan speed
  • Remove carbon and sulfur

Change the Furnace filter Regularily

Regularly changing the air filter is an important part of gas furnace maintenance that should be addressed regularly. Air filters can be purchased at almost any hardware store, and they are not expensive. A dirty air filter will make the gas furnace produce less heat and make it incredibly inefficient.

Check for gas leaks

Gas leaks on gas furnaces are easy to spot, you can tell from gas build up on the floor or from the smell of gas around the furnace area. Gas leaks require a professional to fix the furnace to ensure the safety of the unit.

Check to make sure the Thermostat is working properly

Have you noticed the house is either really warm or really cold, but the thermostat is set at a comfortable temperature? When a thermostat is not working properly the furnace will not heat the house properly, which makes the unit very inefficient.

Make sure the Control valve is turned to open

If you’re having a problem with the furnace producing heat a common problem is that the control valve is turned off. If the valve is turned off the furnace will not produce heat.

Check the tension belt

If your gas furnace is running loudly and you can’t seem to figure out why, the tension belt may be a possible cause.

Check the pilot light

Make sure the pilot light is lit and working properly. The pilot light should be a hot deep blue, if it is a different color then there is something wrong and it’s not working properly.

Oil the motor

Oil is necessary for proper maintenance of the motor, you only need to add a couple of drops. Oil should be added to the motor with the change of every season, or when the motor does not sound like it is running smoothly.

Check the ducts often

The Furnace Ducts should be checked frequently for debris or any obstructions. If the ventilation is blocked it could pose a range of health risks including breathing problems and or carbon monoxide poisoning.

Castle Maintenance has many great service to fit your needs Call now to book an appointment or request a Quote online

Changing your furnace filters

Furnace Filter

Furnace filters help to safeguard the furnace, they also contribute to good health and well-being by cleaning the air circulating through the house. Air filters capture many of the contaminates that aggravate allergy and asthma symptoms. Molds, pollen, and dust are found in all households and are drastically reduced by using a good quality furnace filter.
The filter will also help keep your heating or air conditioning system coils cleaner, which can save you money on your energy bills.

How often should filters be changed?
As general rule you should check your filters monthly and change the filters approximately every three months to keep your furnace running at maximum efficiency. If they are especially dirty change them more often. Follow the manufactures instructions and use the furnace filter they recommend, make sure to read the owner’s manual for the care instructions.
Here are a few factors that affect the life of a filter:
• Dirty ducts
• House pets
• Tobacco smoke
• Renovations to your home (drywall dust/sawdust)
• Continuous fan operation

Here are some great reasons to change your filters regularly:
•  Dirty air filters are the primary culprit behind system failures. A dirty or blocked filter restricts airflow through your furnace which prevents proper airflow through your whole house. After time, your furnace fan may burn out, the system may overheat or your equipment could completely fail. Changing your furnace filter regularly is vital to your system’s life span and performance.

•  Dirty air filters forces your furnace fan to work harder, which in turn uses up more energy. This can prematurely wear out your system and raise your utility bill.
•  Dirty air filters can negatively affect your indoor air quality. This can aggravate allergies, asthma and particles in the air can affect the lungs.
•  Dirty air filters will allow particles to pass through and build up in your system and ductwork, which can decrease the life span and lead to costly repair or replacement expenses.

Changing your furnace filters is an easy way to help reduce airborne contaminates in your home and also extend the life of your furnace!! Call now (403) 250-5172  for more information or to book your next furnace cleaning, or request an appointment online!!

 

 

 

 

 

How often and why you should flush your Hot Water tank?

 

Among many other components in your home that require regular maintenance, your Hot Water tank also needs TLC. Hard water contains calcium and magnesium, draining and flushing out these minerals and the debris that accumulates at the bottom of the tank is extremely important in keeping your tank working properly, and efficiently, and help prevent premature failure.

Some experts suggest monthly, some say every six months and some say yearly. It really depends on how hard the water is in your area. Calgary has extremely hard water so we suggest flushing your tank every six months to a year.

Sediment at the wtr_htr_gas_noted_leadersbottom of your heater can prevent the drain valve from working properly and even effect the efficiency of your hot water heater. As sediment builds up, it takes more energy to heat the water, increased energy costs is a common side effect of hard water. Specifically, calcium scale and mineral deposits or sediment are the result of hard water in a water heater. As the scale builds up, it actually works to insulate the water from the heating effects of the water heater.

Another effect of hard water on a water heater is the accumulation of sediment making its way into water lines and creating an obstruction. This type of blockage is frequently difficult to detect and can lead to very expensive repair bills in order to pinpoint and eliminate the blockage.

Castle Maintenance has many great services including flushing out or replacing your hot water tank.

Call us today 403-250-5172 or Request a Quote online

 

What should you do if you have discovered that your furnace isn’t producing heat?

Although we are in the beginning stages of summer here in Calgary, you want to keep your furnace in good running condition all year round!! Running the furnace fan in the summer is also a great way to keep airflow moving in your home as well as helping to keep your home cooler during the hot months.Is your furnace fan running?

During the winter we rely on our furnace to keep our home warm. Here are a few steps if you experience a furnace failure.

Step One : Make sure the Thermostat is set to Heat.  

This sounds obvious, but in many cases the switch may have been accidently turned off, or turned off or turned off during the warm weather and was not turned back to heat.

Step Two:  check the power source.

Is there electricity on in the rest of the house? Your furnace needs electricity to run. If it’s out, call your electric company and see how long it will be until power is restored. You would be surprised by the number of calls we get from client’s who don’t realize that their furnace can’t run without electricity.

Step Three: check the air furnace filter.

It may be clogged which could cause an automatic shut-down. In that case, all you need to do is replace the filter and start the furnace up again.

Step Four:  Check the gas valve

If all else fails, check the furnace’s gas valve to make sure that it hasn’t somehow been turned to the “Off” position. Any gas furnace has a “gas cock” that has to be located within six feet of the furnace. This is usually never touched, but you could check it. Another way to double-check: If you have more than one gas appliance, find out if it’s working. If it is, you know that the gas line into the home is OK.

Step Five: Call a repair technician.

Chances are the problem is minor especially if it’s a newer furnace. A repair professional will know how to access all components that can become clogged and connections that may have corroded. The technician will also be able to inspect and diagnose larger problems like broken motors and belts.

Ask yourself…..is the repair is worth it?  Many repairs only involve inexpensive replacement parts or simple tune-ups. Unfortunately some repairs can be very costly, it may be worth it for you to consider a new furnace so weigh your options.

If the repair or installation is going to take some time for parts or a new furnace…Keep warm by wearing a few extra layers, running electrical heaters or by using your fireplace (considering you have one).

Castle Maintenance is committed to repairing and installing furnaces as quickly and efficiently as possible!!! For your convenience we have 24 hour emergency service.

SPRING CLEANING CHECKLIST

 

Along with cleaning out closets, washing walls and reorganizing your home, there are many other chores that are important to the upkeep of your home, not only for aesthetics but for safety reasons as well. Castle Maintenance has a wide variety of services to help you prepare your home for spring and summer!!

 

Furnace Cleaning :
Having your Furnace cleaned and Ducts cleaned by a professional is one of the most beneficial ways to remove all the dust, pet hair, allergens and any other contaminates that have accumulated all winter long. Reducing the dust and allergens in your home improves the indoor air quality which can aide in reducing allergies and issues with asthma. Not only are there health benefits but it will also keep your furnace running smoothly and efficiently saving you money in the long run.

Window Washing :
Professional window cleaning will help remove contaminants, such as: pollutants, hard minerals, and mildew helping to protect and extend the life of your windows. Although most of us can tackle this on our own it’s extremely time consuming and sometimes dangerous, climbing up and down ladders and hauling around equipment. A professional window cleaner can have this time consuming chore done within just a few hours and have the experience and equipment to handle the job safely and efficiently.

Pressure Washing :
Pressure washing your siding/stucco, decks, sidewalks and driveways will remove all the dirt, grime, mold, and mildew that has accumulated over the course of the winter. Periodic pressure washing helps to maintain the value and beauty of your home’s exterior. Save your precious time by having the professionals from Castle Maintenance who have all the right cleaning supplies and equipment take care of this daunting task for you!!

Gutters & Eavestroughs :
Gutter cleaning is an essential part of home maintenance. Over time gutters can become dirty and full of debris which can cause a list of expensive problems. Prevent water damage to the foundation of your home and possible leakage into your basement by having your eavestroughs cleaned to ensuring water is being diverted away from your home.
Chimney sweeping :
During the winter months we use our fireplaces to keep our homes warm and cozy.  Chimney fires are more common than you may think and prevention is so important. After using our fireplaces during these cold months it is imperative to have your flue cleaned and inspected by an experienced chimney sweep. The chimney sweep will remove dangerous creosote which is highly combustible.  If it builds up in sufficient quantities the result could be a devastating chimney fire.

 

Humidifiers :

After a long dry winter make sure your humidifier is in tip top shape by having a specialist service your unit or by having a humidifier installed in your home. Keeping the moisture levels stable in your home is beneficial to preserve the precious wood finishing and furniture. The moisture will also aid in keeping dust particles down thus reducing allergies, dry throat, nose and skin.

There are many Spring Cleaning tasks that Castle Maintenance can assist you with saving you precious time and money!!

 

Professional Window Cleaning – Let the sun shine in

 

If you have ever taken on the task of cleaning your windows you know it can be daunting and time consuming. Hiring a professional to clean your windows is a minimal cost when you consider the time and aggravation you will save. 

There are several benefits to hiring a professional to wash your windows. Their experience, equipment, and professional cleaning solutions, produce superior results. Most homeowners can tackle this chore, but it could take hours on end. Our team of professionals can get the job done in just a few hours.

If your house has more than one level it is also a safety concern hauling around equipment and climbing up and down a ladder in order to clean the upper windows. Why not leave it to Castle Maintenance to navigate the ladder and equipment to get your windows glistening again?

 

Extend the life of your windows

Cleaning of your windows can protect and extend the life of your windows. Over time, your windows will gather dust, dirt, oxidation, and other corrosive substances. Regularly cleaning your windows will help remove contaminants, such as: pollutants, hard minerals, and mildew. The key factor is to remove these contaminants before they cause permanent damage, like the effects of oxidization. Professional window cleaners use solutions that are more effective at cleaning away the dirt that can accumulate on windows, due to daily dust and pollution. Often, this is required when windows are not cleaned on a regular basis.
Saves you time

We are all trying to balance our time between work, family, friends and doing the things we love. We would rather be enjoying our time instead of doing the household chores that are needed to upkeep our homes, like washing windows. Most of us are capable of doing the job, but what may take up your whole weekend to accomplish, will take our team of professionals only a few hours. The Castle Maintenance team is professional and has the experience to efficiently wash your windows so you can spend your time doing the things you enjoy.

Reasonably priced

Hiring a professional window cleaning company to wash your windows may cost more than your sweat equity but there are several things to consider. If you look at the cost of your time, plus the cost of supplies and equipment, you begin to see the value in hiring a professional window cleaning company.
If you consider the amount of money spent on professional staff, ladders, cleaning solutions, equipment, and the onsite service it is easier to understand the cost for the expert service.

Additional services

Most companies that offer window washing offer multiple services, which can save you time and money. Castle Maintenance offers a variety of services such as Furnace and duct cleaning, gutter cleaning, pressure washing and so much more. Having Castle Maintenance take care of all your home maintenance issues, provides you with an all in one solution.

Setting your Furnace Fan

Many people ask , What setting should I Set my furnace fan on?
As the seasons change and we move from Winter to Summer months, it’s important to know how your furnace fan can help maximize comfort and minimize dollars spent on energy. Most thermostats give you three fan settings: Off, On or Auto, better known as a summer/winter switch. What do each of those settings really do?
Depending on your climate and comfort preferences (Thermal Comfort),  set the furnace fan to “On” during the months that we usually use air conditioning in order to keep your home cool and save on your cooling bill.

Keeping your furnace fan “on” can help accomplish:
Balanced Air temperature.
Homes with two or more stories tend to have hot air trapped upstairs in the summer while the basement or ground floor remain much cooler. The furnace fan draws that cool air from the basement and distributes it throughout the house for a more even temperature.
Helps keep you cooler.
Just like a ceiling fan or an oscillating fan blowing air over your skin causes quicker evaporation of sweat which allows your heat energy to escape much quicker than normal, making you feel cooler.
Reduces the use of the air conditioner.
During hot weather, most air conditioners do not turn on as often with a furnace fan running. This is good because on average, it costs AT LEAST twice as much to run the air conditioner as it does to keep your furnace fan running. And as an added bonus, if the air conditioner goes on, the furnace fan supplementing the air conditioning lessens the chance of mold and mildew.
Keeping your furnace fan on throughout the summer is an easy and effective way to help keep your home comfortable and your energy costs down.
Repair or Replace Old Parts.
Have one of our specialists perform a full inspection and tune-up of your furnace and venting system. Repairing or replacing old parts will keep your furnace running efficiently for better heating ventilation and lower utility bills during cold weather. Make sure to address any problems you may have had with your unit such as noises or uneven heating during this inspection. Identify issues during an inspection and cleaning as soon as possible so they can be fixed is infinitely preferable than letting them create more damage or cause your furnace to fail completely.
Clean the Area Around Your Furnace.
Keeping the area around your furnace clean will prevent fires or other problems from occurring while the furnace is in use. Take some time to clean your furnace, venting, and the area around it of dust, cobwebs, and other clutter. Never store items on or against your furnace or its vent, this can create a significant fire hazard as well as damage your system.
Change your Filters.
Changing your filter during the summer months is as important as changing your filter during the winter. Proper filtration keeps dust, allergens and other foreign matter out of your home’s air and HVAC components. Changing your filter on a regular basis will help your furnace last longer and run more efficiently. Stocking up prior to the cold months with enough filters to get you through the winter will save you having to make an unwanted trip out in the frigid cold weather . That way you won’t be tempted to skip that extra shopping trip to buy more because it’s cold and snowy outside and maintain your indoor air quality.

Cleaning Your Furnace and Ducts

 

Furnace ducts are the vents and ductwork that channel air throughout a building as it is being heated or cooled by the air conditioning system. Ducts can take air and circulate it back out with the help of the furnace fan. How well sealed the ducts are decides how much heat or cool air is lost in the journey and how much energy the air system can save. Even fully sealed ducts can sometimes suffer from dirt or mold problems, and the only way to take care of these problems is with a thorough furnace duct cleaning from a professional.

Furnace and Duct cleaning refers to the process of removing dust layers and any other contaminants from the inside of the furnace and ducts which cannot easily be reached. Proper duct cleaning can only be done by a professional with the right tools. Specialized extensions and cleaning devices are inserted into the ducts to scrape debris off the sides of the ducts, and then a vacuuming system is used to remove the dislodged debris permanently.

Ducts should be cleaned when there is a noticeable or a serious problem that requires attention. If there is visible mold growing on the ducts or the furnace itself, the ducts should be thoroughly cleaned. Vermin like mice leave nests that must be cleaned away, and sometimes unexpected amounts of dust can clog the vents or cause the dust to spread through the house until the source is removed.

Castle Maintenance has teams of professionals who will clean and maintain your furnace and ducts and keep your unit running efficiently and with clean fresh airflow.

 

5 reasons Furnace and Duct Cleaning in Calgary is so Important.

Furnace cleaning in Calgary is an important part of any home owner’s to do list. Furnaces and ducts do a crucial job of keeping you and your family nice and warm especially during the winter months. Not convinced?

 

Better Indoor Air Quality

Given enough time and dust inside, a furnace can stop supplying your home with clean air. In fact, what you may be breathing in is polluted air no better than the air outside. Castle Maintenance will help ensure that dust and debris is cleared from your furnace and ducts. Do this regularly and you’ll start inhaling clean and fresh air in no time.

Removes Harmful Contaminants

With regular cleaning, a furnace won’t be a nest of harmful contaminants. This effectively eliminates allergens and other health hazards. As you can see, a regular furnace and duct cleaning is good not just for the young and the elderly, but everyone else in between.

Reduces Dust Indoors

Regular furnace and duct cleaning in Calgary also has a more practical benefit for homeowners. Furnaces full of dust particles act as a blower; they distribute dust all over the place which isn’t a good thing of course. Cleaning furnaces will help prevent this from happening. You wouldn’t have to pull out the vacuum cleaner out of the closet as much as you did. This means more time to relax and enjoy with your family.

Better Energy Efficiency

Did you know that clogged furnaces use more energy to perform at the same level as clean ones? In fact, you can expect to save as much as 10 to 15 percent off your energy bill when you obtain the services of Castle Maintenance to clean your furnace and ducts at regular intervals. Apart from efficiency, there’s also a performance boost, the flow of warm or cold air into your home will improve considerably. In the long run, you’ll save more money with a well-maintained furnace and have less emergency repairs.

Renovation and Construction

If you’re moving to a new home in Calgary or a newly-renovated one, consider furnace cleaning a requirement. A thorough clean-up should be done to remove construction dust from your new home. If you live in a new home construction site, have your furnace and ducts cleaned every 6 to 12 months until all construction in the neighbourhood is complete.

Castle Maintenance in Calgary provides all the services you require to keep your furnace running at peak efficiency and are always willing to lend a helping hand.

Contact us at 403-250-5172 for a free estimate or to answer any questions you may have.