The heating and cooling world is filled with different types of ratings and their corresponding acronyms. We’ve got SEER for air conditioners, AFUE for furnaces, HSPF for heat pump heating, and more! When it comes to HVAC filter ratings, it’s all about MERV – which stands for minimum efficiency reporting value. Read on to find out what MERV means and how to find the right air filter rating for use with your heating and air conditioner system.

What Do HVAC Filter Ratings Measure?

The ratings you see on HVAC equipment such as furnaces and air conditioners reflect the unit’s energy efficiency in various ways. HVAC filter ratings are often said to measure efficiency as well, but in reality, they measure the filter’s effectiveness when it comes to removing debris and contaminants from the air that circulates through it. MERV ratings tell consumers how well (or how poorly) the filter performs and how effective the filter is at removing airborne particles of a certain size.

How Are HVAC Filter Ratings Assigned?

MERV was created in 1987 by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and has since been used to show HVAC filter ratings. Air filters are tested by taking particle counts from the air volume using standard dust patterns over a set number of cycles. The MERV rating assigned to a filter reflects its arrestance, or ability to filter out synthetic dust; dust spot efficiency, which is the ability to remove atmospheric dust; and particle size ranges.

The MERV Rating Scale

The MERV rating scale runs from one to 20. One represents the lowest efficiency performance, while 20 represents the highest efficiency performance. The higher the MERV rating, the more effective the filter. As MERV increases, so does a filter’s ability to capture small particles and more of them. Basic MERV charts show average particle sizes and their efficiencies for ranges of ratings, while expanded charts will show more details such as each rating’s efficiency at capturing various-sized particles.

In general, MERV measures for HVAC filter ratings are grouped as follows:

Types of Filters and How They Rank

Air filters are an important part of any home’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, as they help to remove contaminants from the air, improving indoor air quality. There are many different types of air filters available on the market, and each has its own benefits and drawbacks. Common filter types include:

Fiberglass Filters

These disposable filters are made from layers of fiberglass material with a metal grate to reinforce the fiberglass batting. They are designed to trap particles in the air before they can enter your HVAC system. As they have a low MERV rating, typically between MERV 1 to 4, they will not remove all contaminants from the air. They provide minimal contaminant protection for your HVAC system and do little to benefit air quality indoors. As a result, they may not be the best choice for homes with poor indoor air quality.

Electrostatic Filters

Reusable electrostatic air filters are made up of a series of flat metal plates that are charged with static electricity. As air passes through the filter, the charged particles are attracted to the plates and trapped on the surface to capture contaminants including dust, bacteria and pollen. 

The filter is reusable and must be cleaned about every month. Some reusable electrostatic air filters can last for years with proper care. A typical electrostatic filter has HVAC filter ratings from MERV 1 to 4, so they aren’t highly effective for contaminant removal or indoor air quality improvements. However, there are some models available with HVAC filter ratings up to about MERV 8.

Pleated Media Filters

Pleated filters are a type of air filter that is made from pliable cotton, polyester or paper. The material is accordion-folded, which increases its surface area and improves its filtration efficiency. These filters typically have a MERV rating of between 5 and 13, but there are also high-efficiency MERV 14 to 16 options. One downside to pleated media filters is that they are disposable; once they become full of debris, you must replace them. 

Reusable Pleated Filters

Pleated reusable filters are a type of air filter that is designed to be used multiple times. They are made of woven polypropylene material and typically have a pleated surface area, which in turn improves their efficiency at capturing contaminants. Their HVAC filter ratings are commonly between MERV 5 to 13.

Additionally, pleated reusable filters can be combined with an electrostatic charge, which helps to further improve their performance. While they tend to be more expensive than other types of reusable air filters, their improved performance is typically worth the extra cost. These filters do need to be washed regularly, about every 30 to 90 days.

HEPA Filters

HEPA filters are made of a matted material that consists of glass or synthetic fibers. The fibers are arranged in a way that creates tiny pores that allow air to pass through, but they are small enough to trap dangerous particles, such as pollen, dust mites and pet dander. HEPA filters typically have HVAC filter ratings of MERV 17 to 20, which means that they are able to remove 99.97% of all particles that are 0.3 microns in size or larger from the air. 

Choosing the Right HVAC Filter Ratings for Your HVAC System

Typically, a pleated media filter with a MERV 8 to 13 rating is a good choice for home HVAC systems when it comes to HVAC air filter ratings. With these filters, you gain better filtration for improved air quality, and they last longer than lower-rated filters. Your furnace or air handler owner’s manual should state the maximum HVAC filter ratings for use with your equipment.

Should I Use Filters with the Highest HVAC Filter Ratings?

When selecting a furnace filter for use with your home’s HVAC system, the MERV rating must be considered. While you want to find a filter that offers effective contaminant removal that is capable of controlling common contaminants in your home, you must be aware of the limitations of your HVAC system’s equipment. It’s easy to conclude that everyone should use MERV 20 furnace filters at home because they are the best, but actually doing so can lead to serious problems.

The higher MERV rating a filter has, the smaller the pores are across the filter’s surface. Smaller pores give the filter the ability to capture smaller particles, but in turn, the filter’s makeup also creates airflow resistance. This means it is harder for air to circulate through the filter and into the HVAC unit.

Hindering airflow in the pursuit of superior air filtration is not wise. When heating and cooling equipment doesn’t receive adequate airflow, units can overheat, components can sustain damage and the systems can experience difficulties keeping your home at a comfortable temperature. Thus, the HVAC filters with higher MERV filter ratings aren’t necessarily the best choice for your home or HVAC system.

Air Filter Help from Grove Heating & Cooling

If you have questions about HVAC filter ratings or selecting the right HVAC filter for your heating and cooling system, we’re here to help. Contact us today to discover the best filter for use in your Maryland home to improve your indoor air quality.

Have you ever noticed water around your boiler heating system and asked, “Why is my boiler leaking?” In this blog post, Grove Heating & Cooling will walk you through the common causes of boiler leaks. Before you call us for boiler repair services, our team shares what to try yourself to fix the problem. 

Why Is My Boiler Leaking Water?

Boilers can leak for many reasons, but these causes tend to be the most common ones we see.

Boiler Pressure Problems

If you’ve noticed water around your boiler, it’s most likely coming from the pressure outlet pipe. This component is designed with no sealed fittings so the boiler can release extra pressure, which can produce some water outside of the system. All boilers have this component.

If you’re seeing a small amount of water dripping from the pressure outlet pipe, there’s no need to worry as this is normal. However, if you’re finding lots of water around the boiler, it may mean the pressure is too high inside the boiler. You can check the boiler’s pressure gauge to see if the needle is pointing to red or green. If the gauge is in the red, you need to bleed your boiler to lower the pressure.

Loose Fittings

As boilers are in use, their metal constantly is expanding and contracting as it goes from hot to cold. The perpetual expanding and contracting can cause the boiler’s fittings to loosen and leak. Another possible cause of loose joints in boilers is that the boiler is brand new. When a boiler is brand new, its fittings may be a little loose.

Loose fittings may be the reason behind a leaking boiler. If you think this might be the case with your boiler, the best course of action is to fix the problem as soon as possible. Start by examining all fittings. Dry everything off and then wait to see where water reappears. If your boiler pipes appear to be leaking, use a wrench to tighten fittings just a quarter turn and see if this solves the issue of your leak.

If the boiler leak persists, have your technician examine all joints and fittings to ensure they are snug. Taking care of this problem now will help to prevent more serious issues down the road.

Bad Seals

As your boiler ages, it’s common for the rubber seals installed throughout the boiler to harden and eventually break. Corrosion within the system can also cause these seals to wear out over time. Bad seals can cause your boiler to leak water, which not only wastes energy but can also lead to serious damage to your home.

If you have a leaky boiler, it’s important to call a professional to have the seals replaced. This is a fairly common reason for boiler leaks. In some cases, damaged seals can also be a sign that a newly installed boiler is operating at high-pressure levels. This problem can be easily fixed by a professional, so it’s important to get it checked out as soon as possible.

Maryland Boiler Repair Services

There are a number of reasons a boiler might spring a leak, but when you notice water around your unit, there are some things you can do to troubleshoot the issue yourself. If you cannot identify the reason behind why your boiler is leaking or suspect it’s due to an issue that requires professional attention, contact Grove Heating & Cooling to schedule an appointment for boiler repairs today.

As the summer season comes to a close, many homeowners are starting to think about getting their heat pumps ready for the coming colder weather. You may be wondering, “Do I need fall service on my heat pump?” Grove Heating & Cooling explains whether or not you need a fall tune up for your heat pump, as well as why heat pump service matters.

Do I Need Fall Service on My Heat Pump?

If you’re familiar with furnaces and air conditioners, you know they each require professional maintenance servicing once per year. Typically, the air conditioner is serviced in the spring, and the furnace receives service in the fall. Alternatively, heat pumps receive service twice per year.

This is because heat pumps do the job of both a heating system and an air conditioner – one system provides both heating and cooling for a home. Because these HVAC systems perform both functions, they need two tune ups each year, whereas furnaces and air conditioners only require one annual tune up each.

Once the weather gets colder, you’ll be relying on your heat pump to keep your home warm and comfortable. That’s why it’s important to have your heat pump serviced in the fall, before the really cold weather sets in.

While most people think of winter as the time to have their furnace or heat pump serviced, fall is actually the best time to have your heat pump checked by a professional. By having your system serviced in the fall, you can avoid many problems that might arise during the winter months. 

Benefits of Bi-Annual Tune Ups for Heat Pumps

As the temperature starts to change, it’s important to make sure your heat pump is ready for the new season. Just like any other piece of HVAC equipment, heat pumps need to be properly maintained in order to function properly. When you tune up your heat pump in the spring and fall, you’re helping to ensure that it will continue to operate efficiently and effectively.

When the temperature outside begins to cool, your heat pump has to work hard, providing heating to maintain the desired temperature inside your home. This can put a strain on the system, and if there are any issues with the heat pump going into the heating season, they will likely be magnified if you continue to use the heat pump without proper care.

During a heat pump tune up, a technician will clean the unit, inspect the components and controls, and identify any necessary repairs so they can be taken care of right away. This bi-annual servicing not only helps to prolong the life of your heat pump, but it can also save you money by ensuring that it’s running as efficiently as possible. Many repairs can be avoided during the cold season, and your home will stay more comfortable throughout the winter.

Schedule Fall Maintenance Today for Your Heat Pump

Don’t skip this important maintenance service in the fall, as heat pumps require bi-annual tune ups for best performance and longevity. Get your heat pump ready for winter, and call Grove Heating & Cooling today to schedule heat pump maintenance. Grove can handle all of your indoor air quality and HVAC system needs.

Most homeowners aren’t giving too much thought to their furnaces and heating equipment this time of year. Even though the temperatures are hot right now, before too long it will be time to turn on the heat indoors – is your furnace going to be ready? Signing up with an HVAC maintenance plan is one way to ensure it is! Grove Heating & Cooling explains what these plans include and the benefits of signing up.

What’s Included in an HVAC Maintenance Plan?

When you join an HVAC maintenance plan from Grove Heating & Cooling, your membership covers your heating and cooling system routine maintenance needs throughout the year. Depending on the plan you choose, you can receive:

Why Homeowners Need to Think About Furnace Maintenance Now

Soon, the weather will start to get colder and you’ll need your furnace to be up and running to keep your home warm. To make sure everything is working properly, it’s a good idea to have your furnace tuned up before winter starts. This way, you can avoid any unexpected issues or repairs that might come up.

While it may be warm now, it’s the perfect time to sign up for an HVAC maintenance program. Sign up in the summer and your coverage will already be in place to ready your heating equipment once it’s closer to winter.

Benefits of Joining an HVAC Maintenance Plan

What if there was a way that you could extend the life of your HVAC system, minimize the number of repair service calls you have to make, protect your comfort when temperatures drop, and possibly even save some money on your energy bills? An HVAC maintenance plan can make these benefits possible! 

Know Your System Is Ready

Making sure your HVAC system is regularly serviced and maintained can save you a lot of money and headache down the line. By signing up for a service contract, you can rest assured knowing that your AC will be in good hands. Regular tune ups help to keep your air conditioning and heating systems running smoothly.

Regular HVAC maintenance is also great for catching any small problems with your equipment before they have a chance to turn into big (and expensive) ones. Repairs can be made while the problem is minor so they don’t pose a risk to your furnace or cooling unit once you start to use it. With this care, your heating and cooling systems are less likely to break down or suffer performance problems while in use, so you don’t lose time without the essential heating and cooling you need.

Why take the chance of your HVAC system breaking down when you need it most? Investing in a service contract makes good sense for peace of mind and budget purposes. 

Stay Comfortable All Season Long

Additionally, the regular maintenance provided by an HVAC maintenance plan can improve your system’s energy efficiency. When your furnace or air conditioner runs at peak efficiency levels, it’s running reliably so that your home stays comfortable no matter the temperatures outside. While you enjoy the stress-free comfort your HVAC system provides, you’ll also save money on utility bills as your furnace or air conditioner won’t require as much electricity or natural gas to keep your home at the ideal temperature.

Join an HVAC Maintenance Plan Today

An HVAC maintenance plan is a perfect tool to preserve functionality, boost energy efficiency, and protect your furnace throughout this year’s heating season. Grove Heating & Cooling offers a number of different options to meet your needs and fully care for your home’s comfort systems. Contact us to join an HVAC maintenance plan today!

Many homeowners don’t realize something is wrong with their home’s furnace until there are obvious signs and symptoms present. Since a cracked heat exchanger is one of the most serious problems your natural gas furnace can have, it’s important to know what to look for. The heating professionals at Grove Heating & Cooling explain the signs of a cracked heat exchanger so you know when to call for help regarding this important furnace issue.

Why Heat Exchanger Cracks Are Dangerous

A furnace heat exchanger is an important part of a furnace. It helps to transfer heat from the furnace to the air in your home. Heat generated by combusting fuel is normally contained within the furnace’s heat exchanger as heat energy is transferred to the home’s air, and these byproducts of combustion eventually exit the system and the home through the flue.

The combustion process produces many byproducts, one of which is carbon monoxide. A cracked heat exchanger can be dangerous because it can allow carbon monoxide to mix with the home’s air supply. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that can cause serious health problems, even death.

Common Cracked Heat Exchanger Symptoms

There are a handful of distinct and common signs of a cracked heat exchanger in your furnace. The signs and symptoms all homeowners need to be mindful of include:

Flickering Yellow Burner Flame

The first sign of a problem with your heating system is the color of the furnace flame. You can easily decipher whether you need to call for repair or not by just looking at the flame color. If it is a normal blue, then there’s nothing wrong and no need to panic, but if its flame is yellow, then there’s a problem in your furnace.

A yellow flame is one of the signs of a cracked or damaged heat exchanger, but it can also indicate dirty burners. If the furnace produces a flickering yellow flame, it’s likely that the problem within your furnace is on the serious side and needs immediate professional attention.

Soot Inside the Furnace

Carbon builds up inside the furnace system, often as a result of incomplete fuel combustion, creating more soot than normal within the unit. Faulty burners in your HVAC system can cause an excess of soot in the furnace, most commonly due to inadequate maintenance or pilot light issues. However, cracked heat exchangers can also result in increased soot levels.

Heating System Odors

If you notice an unpleasant smell coming from your heating system, it could be one of the signs of a cracked heat exchanger. These fumes typically smell similar to formaldehyde. The fumes are highly toxic and can be very dangerous if inhaled. 

Signs of Wear and Tear

Your furnace works hard to keep your home comfortable all winter long. But like any machine, it will eventually start to show signs of wear and tear. If you notice external components beginning to degrade, it’s likely that the internal components are also starting to experience some wear and tear. This damage is often one of the signs of a cracked heat exchanger.

Stress cracks are generated by the cyclical expansion and contraction of the components as their metals heat up and cool down. Corrosion can impact various components when they are exposed to chloride fumes or moisture in the system.

Furnace Repair Service in Maryland

If you’re noticing any of the signs of a cracked heat exchanger, it’s important to call a professional right away. A cracked heat exchanger can be dangerous, and can quickly lead to furnace failure.

At Grove Heating & Cooling, we offer furnace repair and replacement services in Maryland. We can help you inspect your furnace for signs of a cracked heat exchanger and provide the best course of action for repairing or replacing your furnace. If you notice any of the signs of a cracked heat exchanger in your furnace, call us today to schedule an appointment for furnace repairs.

Your thermostat and air conditioning system work together to keep your Maryland home comfortable all summer long. If your thermostat isn’t working right, chances are you’re going to experience some discomfort this season. Grove Heating & Cooling explains the bad thermostat symptoms you need to watch out for, as well as your options to resolve thermostat problems.

Bad Thermostat Symptoms

If your thermostat display is blank, there are number of fixes to consider before calling for professional installation. If you notice cooling problems in the home, you may also notice one or more of these thermostat issues:

Your Cooling System Constantly Turns On or Off

The primary purpose a thermostat serves is to communicate to your cooling equipment. In the summer, it relays messages to the air conditioner or heat pump to reduce the temperature inside the home. If your cooling unit isn’t responding to temperature signals from the thermostat, it’s likely that your thermostat is having an issue.

​Short cycling is among the most common reasons thermostats are replaced. Short cycling can occur when the thermostat shuts off the cooling system before it should, and fails to complete a full cooling cycle.

The wiring in your thermostat may be damaged, disrupting the connection between the cooling unit and its controls. Call an expert to identify if wiring problems are the issue at fault and make repairs if possible. The thermostat may need to be replaced if it is no longer communicating with the home’s HVAC equipment.

Thermostat Readings Are Incorrect

A properly calibrated thermostat will make sure that your indoor spaces do not get too cold or hot. Improper temperature readings are one of the faulty thermostat symptoms you need to be aware of.

To determine if the temperature is accurate, test the reading of the thermostat using an indoor thermometer. If the readings on your thermostat are not correct, the thermostat’s sensor may be failing. The cause could be due to age, the need for calibration, or other defects.

Increased Energy Bills

A failing thermostat can thwart all efforts to lower household cooling costs. An unexpectedly high electric bill may be the first sign you have of a failing thermostat. If the thermostat isn’t properly measuring the temperature, it is likely to result in your cooling unit working too hard. The more frequently the system runs per hour, the greater its power consumption. 

Temperature Swings

A defective thermostat is typically unable to maintain the temperature settings you input. It can change temperature settings with no prior warning or misread temperatures, causing the cooling system to produce temperatures higher or lower than you like.

You can lower the thermostat setting to test it and observe the results. If the same issue occurs, contact a technician to investigate. There could be a loose connection, or the thermostat may be in need of replacement.

No Response from the Thermostat

Once you have adjusted temperatures, the thermostat should immediately react to the changes and send appropriate signals to instruct your cooling system. In most cases, you’ll hear a clicking noise when you adjust the settings, and your HVAC system starts almost immediately. If the HVAC system isn’t turning on when you change the thermostat settings, chances are it requires replacement.

Solving Bad Thermostat Symptoms

Some thermostat issues have easy fixes and a simple repair can restore the thermostat’s function. Severe thermostat problems may require that a new unit be installed.

Homeowners have many options to choose from when selecting a new thermostat:

Smart Thermostats

Smart thermostats can be programmed but they don’t require it. When you use them, these thermostats will learn your preferred temperatures and household schedule. The thermostat automatically switches between settings that are energy efficient and in line with your preferences. You can also control a smart thermostat remotely, which is an incredibly handy feature to have.

Programmable Thermostats

Programmable thermostats are programmable and automatically adjust cooling system operation to achieve the desired temperature over the course of the day. Program desired temperature setpoints based on your preferences and when the home will be occupied.

Contact Grove for Thermostat Repair and Replacement

If you notice any bad thermostat symptoms this summer, don’t waste time calling Grove Heating & Cooling. Our team will inspect your thermostat, perform repairs if possible, or install a new thermostat that provides precision control over your cooling system.

The summer heat can be oppressive, but with the right cooling equipment, you can keep your home or office cool and comfortable. In this post, we’ll introduce you to some of the most common types of cooling equipment we install to help Maryland homeowners stay cool in summer.

Equipment to Help You Stay Cool in Summer

Grove Heating & Cooling installs several different types of cooling systems. Your cooling system options include central air conditioners, air source heat pumps, geothermal heat pumps, and ductless mini split systems. Keep reading to learn more about each type of HVAC unit.

Central Air Conditioners

A central air conditioner is a split HVAC system, meaning it has indoor and outdoor equipment. The indoor equipment is the air handler or furnace, while the outdoor equipment is called the condensing unit.

An air conditioning unit doesn’t actually chill the air by adding some sort of coolness to help you stay cool in summer. Instead, it removes heat from the air and transfers it outside. The cold air is then circulated back into your home’s living areas via ducts.

Air Source Heat Pumps

Air source heat pumps are a type of central cooling split system. They typically include an indoor air handler and outdoor heat pump unit, connected by refrigerant lines.

How do they work? Air source heat pumps cool in the same manner as central air conditioners. The main difference between central air conditioners and heat pumps is that a heat pump also has the ability to heat the home, while air conditioners only cool it.

Geothermal Heat Pumps

Geothermal systems use a type of heat pump that transfers heat between the indoor air and the ground or a water source. The components include the geothermal heat pump (usually installed inside the home), the ground loop, and a distribution system consisting of either ducts or radiant water pipes. The ground loop is a special component composed of fluid-filled pipes placed below ground on the property.

Geothermal heat pumps can extract heat from the ground and use it to help you stay cool in summer. This can be a more efficient option than traditional air conditioning systems and other cooling options, and it can also save you money on your energy bills. Geothermal systems can also be used for home heating.

Ductless Cooling Systems

Ductless cooling systems, also called ductless mini splits, use a different setup than most other cooling systems. One outdoor unit connects to multiple indoor units. The air conditioner or heat pump sits outside and connects to air handlers installed throughout the home. This setup allows for individual control of cooling in various areas of the home, making them very energy efficient.

Cooling Systems for Your Maryland Home

Summertime is hot, and no one wants to be uncomfortable in their own home. Luckily, there are a variety of HVAC systems to choose from, each with its own benefits and drawbacks. If you’re looking for ways to stay cool in summer, contact Grove Heating & Cooling to discuss your options and find the perfect cooling solution for you! A Grove HVAC technician will be happy to assist you.

Many homeowners don’t know what air conditioner short cycling is, but they may see the signs of it during summer days. Short cycling signals a problem with your cooling equipment, which leads to higher energy bills, unreliable comfort control, and even equipment damage. Grove Heating & Cooling explains what air conditioner short cycling can do to your home, what causes it, and how to fix these system issues.

The Problem with Short Cycling

Air conditioner short cycling can cause many problems inside your home and with your cooling system. If you experience short cycling, you’ll probably notice symptoms such as:

Causes of Air Conditioner Short Cycling & Solutions

Many system issues can be behind air conditioner short cycling. Take a look at the most common causes of this HVAC system problem and what needs to be done to correct these malfunctions or flaws.

1. A Dirty Filter

When air filters become dirty, they make it harder for your HVAC system to circulate cool air throughout the air conditioning unit as well as the home. A dirty air filter can cause the compressor and fan motor to overheat prematurely, which will force the air conditioner to shut down its cooling cycle early for safety.

If you experience air conditioner short cycling, the filter is a good starting point in your search for solutions. Check the air filter to see if it has become filled with contaminants – replace it if it is no longer in usable condition. With a new filter in place, see how your air conditioner runs – if the short cycling doesn’t stop, move on to troubleshoot other possible problems.

2. Frozen Evaporator Coils

If the evaporator coil is covered in ice, it is unable to extract heat from air circulating through the air conditioner. The frozen coil will cause the system to work harder and use more energy to accomplish its task, ultimately leading to overheating and air conditioner short cycling.

Remove the access panel on your indoor cooling equipment to inspect the coils. If you see ice on the coils, shut down your air conditioner and allow the coils to thaw. You may choose to set the system fan to ON in order to keep warm air flowing over the icy coils, which can help them thaw faster. A dirty or clogged air filter can cause coils to freeze, so also check the filter while the coils thaw and replace it if needed. Once coils are thawed, turn the air conditioner back on – if it continues to short cycle, call your HVAC company for repairs.

3. Low Refrigerant Level

Your air conditioner requires a certain refrigerant charge to operate correctly. If refrigerant escapes the system through a leak, the cooling unit will consume more energy and overwork. This causes the system to overheat and shut down prematurely. 

Refrigerant leaks causing air conditioner short cycling must be handled by an HVAC professional. If you suspect your system has a refrigerant leak, call for repairs.

4. Oversized Air Conditioner

A system that isn’t properly sized for the home is another common cause of air conditioner short cycling. When air conditioners are too large for the space, they cool the home too fast. This results in the cooling cycle ending before the appropriate length of time, causing more starts and stops which wear out parts of the unit.

The only solution for this cause of AC unit short cycling is to replace your cooling unit. Make sure you get the right size by working with a qualified HVAC professional to replace your air conditioner.

Air Conditioner Repairs in Maryland

If you experience air conditioner short cycling this summer, don’t allow this problem to continue without attention or you will pay the price. Call Grove Heating & Cooling to schedule air conditioner repairs today.

In the summer months, many homeowners in the Bowie, MD area experience excessive indoor humidity. This is more than just an annoyance; it can affect your furniture, your allergies, and your comfort. High levels of humidity can also lead to mold growth, cause your air conditioner to use more energy, and more. Grove Heating & Cooling explains why humidity is higher this time of year and how to decrease humidity for better comfort this season.

Why Do Homes Get Humid in the Summer?

Unfortunately, increased humidity is just a natural consequence of warmer temperatures over the summer months. When air is warm, it is able to hold more moisture particles than it can when it is cold, causing higher humidity levels this time of year.

When the air is humid outside, you also feel it inside. Air leaks throughout the home, open windows and doors, and other factors cause humid outdoor air to make its way inside. As humid outdoor air mixes with indoor air, the indoor relative humidity level will also rise and your living areas will feel muggier. Excess moisture buildup can also lead to mold growth which can damage your home and cause health issues.

Air conditioners help some with decreasing indoor humidity levels during the summer, as the cooling process naturally causes some moisture to condense and leave the circulating air supply. If your home’s air conditioner is too large for the area, you may notice that your living areas feel even more humid than they should this time of year. When air conditioners are too big, they start up and shut down again quickly, running a shortened cooling cycle – this is an issue known as short cycling. Because the air conditioner doesn’t run for the proper length of time, you don’t receive the dehumidification benefits you would normally receive from air conditioner use.

Tips to Decrease Excess Humidity in Your Home

If you’re struggling with high indoor humidity this summer, you don’t have to put up with the discomfort all season long. Read our tips below so you can keep relative humidity levels balanced and make your living areas more comfortable.

1. Practice Proper Ventilation

Take advantage of your home’s ventilation equipment to expel stale, humid air from your living areas this summer. If you have a whole home ventilation system, use it to bring in fresh air, which lowers humidity by also pushing out highly humid air from inside the home. Run exhaust fans when showering or washing clothes in hot water, and use the kitchen range hood when cooking on the stovetop to expel hot, humid air.

2. Improve Insulation

You can add more insulation to decrease the amount of outdoor air that infiltrates your home. Add insulation in areas of the home such as attics and wall gaps to keep in cool air and block out hot, humid outside air. Add weatherstripping around windows and doors to seal up gaps, and use caulk to close cracks and other air leaks throughout the home.

3. Install a Whole Home Dehumidifier

While air conditioning units do provide some level of dehumidification in the summer, it often isn’t enough to keep households comfortable in spite of naturally high humidity levels. Installing a whole house dehumidifier gives your cooling system the power to extract more moisture and keep humidity levels properly balanced indoors. An HVAC professional can help you lower indoor humidity levels by installing a whole house dehumidifier and showing you how to operate your new equipment properly.

Conquer Indoor Humidity This Summer

Grove Heating & Cooling can help homeowners in Bowie, MD reduce humidity levels by using whole home dehumidifiers. Contact us today to request an estimate for whole house dehumidifier installation or to learn about our other indoor air quality services.

As a homeowner, you want your HVAC system to last as long as possible. After all, they quickly become expensive to replace. So how long do heat pumps typically last, and how you can help your heat pump remain fully functional for as long as possible?

In the latest blog post from Grove Heating and Cooling in Bowie, MD, we’ll discuss these questions and more to help homeowners learn what to expect out of their heat pump system.

How Long Do Heat Pumps Typically Last?

Able to provide homes with both heating and cooling, you might think that heat pumps have a heat pump’s longevity is shorter than other HVAC systems, as a heat pumps work all year long. However, If your home in Bowie, MD, or beyond utilizes a heat pump, you can typically expect it to last for 10-20 years. This is very similar to the life expectancy of other HVAC equipment, such as furnaces and central air conditioners.

Heat pumps are known for their efficiency and are often able to provide homeowners with much lower heating and cooling costs than traditional HVAC systems are able to. Reach out to a professional to learn more about heat pumps and to determine if they’re right for your home’s needs.

How Can You Lengthen Your System’s Lifespan?

Just like many other appliances, heat pumps require regular maintenance in order to fix any minor issues that occur with normal usage. While other HVAC systems require a tune-up once per year, heat pumps benefit from two appointments per year, as they’re used year-long for both heating and cooling. 

By providing your system with regular maintenance, you’ll keep any minor issues from growing and becoming more serious. Any issues that are left unaddressed and unresolved can lead to a complete system breakdown, causing you to replace the system altogether. Ensure that your system is able to last for as long as possible by providing it with the bi-annual proper maintenance service that it needs. If you maintain regular maintenance, you might even extend the heat pump’s lifespan so you can buy yourself some more time before needing to purchase a new cooling system. 

When is it Time to Replace Your Heat Pump?

It’s a smart idea to know your heat pump’s age, and pay close attention to your heat pump as it nears the end of the heat pump’s life expectancy. Is it heating your home as effectively as it once was? Is it making any strange noises? Anything out of the ordinary should indicate that it’s time to contact a professional to come and inspect your system.

After your thorough inspection is complete, your heating and air conditioning technician should help you decide the next steps. Whether the system needs repairs or a replacement, be sure to have the necessary service performed in order to stay safe and comfortable within your home.

Contact Grove Heating and Cooling for Heat Pump Services

Grove Heating and Cooling has many years of experience in providing residents of Crofton, Bowie, Annapolis, and the surrounding areas with high-quality heat pump services. Whenever your system requires maintenance, repairs, or a complete replacement, count on the experienced and dedicated professionals at Grove Heating and Cooling. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Google Reviews