Why Should You Have a Tankless Water Heater at Home

Winter is approaching and the need for hot water is going to increase. Make sure your water heater is in good condition, and if not, repair or replace it immediately. If you live in the Aurora area, you can get in touch with our experts at Prestige to take care of all your plumbing needs.

Tankless water heaters

Tankless or instantaneous water heaters are gaining popularity in the US. As the name suggests, tankless water heaters do not have continuously heated tanks, unlike conventional water heaters. These are smaller devices that may be installed inside your house at more than one points-of-use. The water flows through a copper heat exchanger inside the unit and is heated by gas or electrical mechanism.

Benefits of tankless heaters

There are various benefits of using tankless water heaters.

  • Long-term cost efficiency: Even though the initial costs (device, installation) are rather high compared with conventional water heaters, your energy costs are reduced up to 30 percent.
  • Energy efficient: As tankless water heaters heat water only when required, they save energy.
  • Space: Tankless water heaters do not require a lot of space and may be affixed to a wall at any convenient place inside the house.
  • Low device damage risk: The chances of water damage from rupture or tank failure is also low, as water is not stored in the heater.

How do I know if my heating unit needs a tune up?

Signs Your Heating Unit Needs a Tune Up


Aurora HeatingIt is best to have a tune up for the heater in a home at least once a year. Due to heating being used the most during the winter months, you may want to have the heater serviced and a annual tune up before the winter months so you are not left in the cold. However, there are signs that a heater needs a tune up which can prevent further issues than can occur if the issue is not addressed.

If the heat is turned on but not heat is coming from the vents, this is an obvious bad sign. However, many experience this issue with their heating when it’s too late. It’s best to try turning on the heat before the winter months to see how it works otherwise you will be left in the cold until it can be repaired. Before making any calls about the heater not working, check the breaker switches to be sure that they are on.

One sign that the heater needs a tune up or repairs that cannot be avoided is the carbon monoxide monitor. This is especially important for those how have heat from gas heating. Carbon monoxide cannot be smelt or seen therefore you will not know and can actually kill you. However, all gas appliances have a monitor to detect the carbon monoxide. In the event this alarm was to be set off, quickly shut down all gas appliances. It is best to open all windows and doors and wait outside while calling the police department.

Of course during winter months you will see a increase due to the use of the heater. However, an abnormal spike in a utility bill could be from a heater working improperly and consuming more energy. Usually, more energy is consumed while the heater struggles trying to keep the house to a certain temperature. If a heater has to strain too hard, it can actually cause it to have even more complicated issues such as shutting down due to more damages. Having a routine tune up can save you money in the long run from lowering the energy cost to potentially having to replace a heater.

Is the heating unit in your Aurora home acting up? Call Prestige Plumbing, Heating & Cooling at (630) 801-8600 and let us handle the problem for you!

How to pick the right air conditioning system for your home.

Aurora Air ConditioningCentral air conditioning systems are frequently regarded as an important valuable selling point, so if there’s a possibility you’re going to move in the near future, a central air-conditioning is frequently a very sound investment. People with asthma and other allergy problems, central air conditioning systems with their ability to filter and “condition” household air can also have health benefits.

Three points to note when getting a new central air conditioning system:

Beware of Oversize Systems: Too much of something in this case isn’t a good thing- too much cooling capacity will make an AC system less efficient. It will lead to your system to cycle on and off frequently, producing excess wear and tear on the components and increasing the electric bill in for your home since the turning on process uses additional energy (just like with a car).

To be sure your AC system is suited to your home, ask a HVAC contractor to walk you through the calculation. The process consists of determining what the cooling capacity is based on an formula that takes into account the size of your home, its insulation, and the local climate.

Simple Is Generally Less Expensive: Staying with your existing system is frequently the less expensive route, especially if you’re planning on selling your home. If your AC system has enough capacity that it can be extended to cool new spaces, that approach will probably be less expensive than installing an all-new system.

Buy Quality: Smart shoppers don’t always buy bargains. Buying durable air conditioning systems that come with long warranties can cost more initially but they present fewer headaches. High quality central air conditioning systems generally are guaranteed for twenty years.

Are you in need of a HVAC contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing Heating & Cooling at 630-801-8600 and schedule a service call today!

How often does my heating unit need a tune up?

Signs Your Heating Unit Needs a Tune Up


Aurora HeatingAppliances don’t always give a warning sign when they’re about to go out, but there are several signs your heating unit can be giving you that means it’s in need of a tune-up as soon as possible. However, in order for the appliance to work as efficiently and effectively as it can, it should be serviced at least once a year before the winter months since it’s during those months that the heat is being used the most; it’s also good to get any issues addressed before it leads to further issues that can lead to the whole heating unit breaking down, which is a problem no one wants to have to suffer through in the winter.One of the most telling signs that your heating unit is in need of a tune-up is if you notice there’s no heat coming from the vents when the heat is turned on. To avoid being left in the cold until the problem gets fixed, you should always check to see if the heating is working before winter arrives, that way if it’s not, you can get it fixed in time. After checking to make sure the breaker switches are turned on and you’re still not receiving any heat, it’s time to make a call to a HVAC company so the problem can be assessed and properly handled by a skilled technician.

For those with a gas heater, it’s important to frequently check the carbon monoxide monitor as carbon monoxide is a potentially deadly poison that can not be smelt or seen. Shall the alarm be set off, all gas appliances should be shut down and everyone in the area should immediately evacuate while the the proper calls are being made. Until the tune-up or needed repairs are made, no one should go back into the building.

Another sign you may need to get your heater tuned-up is if you’re experiencing a higher than usual utility bill, even in the winter months, your heating unit may not be working as efficiently as it should be and hiking up the bill as it works harder and therefore consumes more energy.

Are you in need of a heating contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing Heating & Cooling at 630-801-8600 and schedule a service call today!

Where can I find the right HVAC contractor for me?

How To Make Sure You’re Hiring The Right HVAC Contractor


Aurora HVACYour HVAC system is an expensive and vital piece of equipment that greatly affects the overall comfort of your home. Over time, your heating and cooling system will require — at the very least — servicing, and possibly repairs or replacements. Hiring the right HVAC contractor to perform these tasks is essential to ensure your unit is functioning safely and properly, while helping to prevent costly repairs in the future.

You may be tempted to hire the contractor with the lowest bid. However, that isn’t always the best course of action. In fact, hiring a contractor simply because they offered a lower price could cost you more money and unnecessary stress. Instead, take the time to research your options and check references. A quick way to get a feel for the type of worker the contractor is is to check online for reviews of the company.

Ensuring the contractor has a valid license issued by your state license board is the first step in ensuring you are hiring the right person for the job. Find out just how long the contractor has been in business. Try to avoid people who merely do this as a side job or hobby, and instead choose a HVAC contractor that works full time in the business with years of experience under their belt. Asking for a list of references is a completely reasonable request that gives you the ability to contact their past customers to find out their first hand experience with the contractor’s work.

Never hire a heating, cooling or plumbing contractor that doesn’t have proof of liability or worker’s compensation insurance. Without this coverage, you could be left footing the bill if a mishap or accident occurs on your property. When asked, the contractor should fax you a copy of their Certificate of Insurance so you can verify they do in fact have coverage.

Don’t forget to ask the contractor what recent training they have to keep up to date with all the latest techniques, as well as what type of equipment they have to successfully complete the job. Furthermore, if environmental issues are a concern of yours, inquire with the contractor on what they can do to increase energy efficiency and improve water conservation in your home.

Researching HVAC contractors isn’t a waste of time. By spending a few hours learning about your options, you can rest assure your heating and cooling system will be well cared for.

Are you in need of a HVAC contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing Heating & Cooling at 630-801-8600 and schedule a service call today!

How can I find the right heating contractor for me?

Steps To Picking The Right Heating Contractor


Aurora HeatingPicking the right HVAC contractor, involves a few easy steps. First it’s important to make sure that the contractor is insured and licensed. Reputable contractors will have their credentials available at your request. These credentials should include all federal, state and local licenses and certifications, as well as liability insurance. Ask the contractor if he or she has been professionally trained, and ask to see their license. It is also a good idea to check with your states professional licensing board, to check the status of the license. While not mandatory, most professional HVAC contractors will have a North American Technician Excellence certification (NATE). This is a federal certification that validates a technician’s knowledge in the area of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. It is a widely accepted certification that professionals obtain by taking an exam. An Excellence certification is also a certification that is not mandatory, but again, validates the technicians knowledge. To obtain this certification, a technician must have at least two years experience in the field and have had passed a written examination.

A mandatory certification is the EPA 608 certification. An HVAC contractor must obtain this in order to legally put refrigerant into an air conditioning system. Finally, check with local authorities for licensing and certification requirements.

Whatever the reason for needing to call a HVAC contractor, they should be knowledgeable in all phases of heating, ventilation and air conditioning. By asking these questions, you can find out whether or not the contractor is qualified.

An HVAC contractor should conduct themselves in a professional and ethical manner. Your questions should be answered in full detail with written examples of experience available upon request. Never rely on oral statements. Once you feel comfortable with the person who you are considering to hire, make sure to read the terms and work description in the estimate, and be sure all work is guaranteed. Descriptions of work and services should also be written in minute detail.

It’s also important to get multiple estimates. This way you can get an idea of whether the estimate cost is competitive or not. Are you in need of a reliable heating contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing, Heating & Cooling at (630) 801-8600 and schedule a service call today!

The five most common problems with air conditioning systems

Aurora AC TechnicianThere are hundreds of possibilities that lead to your air conditioning system requiring a repair or replacement. Understanding what the issues are with your air conditioning system allows you to make more informed decisions when talking with a licensed AC technician – whether you require an AC tune up, repair, or replacement.

The five most common problems that cause air conditioning systems to malfunction in the West Chicago suburban area include:

•Frozen Coils
A frozen coil frequently examples an issue with the airflow of your air conditioning system. Frozen coils can be caused by dirty air filters or blocked ductwork. Frozen coils can also stem from low refrigerant levels.

•Outside Unit Not Functioning
This problem frequently comes from a power issue, a faulty thermostat or possibly a problem with the contactor.

•Outside Fan is Not Working
If the fan on the outside AC unit isn’t running/not running properly, a proper heat/energy transfer isn’t taking place and the AC compressor can overheat and affect the safety workload. Additionally, a malfunctioning fan can lead to internal damage to the compressor.

•Low Refrigerant Levels
The refrigerant is what cools the air. Having a low refrigerant level is frequently connected to a leak or a problem with the refrigerant system. When this issue arises all leaks and problems need to be found and fixed.

•Faulty Wiring
Improper/faulty air conditioning wiring is a dangerous and a potential fire hazard. Poor wiring frequently prevent the air conditioning system from getting power.

Many of these common air conditioning problems can be mitigated by tuning up your air conditioning system on an annual basis. The best time to get an air conditioning tune up in Aurora and the entire West Chicago suburbs is during the spring before the hot summer months come around.

Are you in need of a HVAC contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing Heating & Cooling at 630-801-8600 and schedule a service call today!

Five Tips to Keep Drains Clean

Over time the drain lines at your North Aurora home are bound to get clogged. The problem could arise in any of the drains – kitchen sink, bathroom drain and so on. There are simple ways through, which you can ensure that the drains remain clean and water as well as waste passes through it without obstructions.

Use a plunger

This is a simple, and in many cases the most effective, drain cleaning solution. Drain clogs or backing up of water in the toilet can be easily be looked into with a plunger.

Brine solution

A lot of grease and foul smelling waste is drained through the kitchen sink. Grease deposits inside the drain can lead to clogs and waste material can create a bad odor to emanate from the drain. Brine solution, which is basically strong salt water, can eliminate both these issues. It is simple and effective. This is a preventive measure, which ensures that no clogs appear in the drain.

Drain cleaner solution

Plungers cannot reach too far into a drain line. In such cases a drain cleaner solution can prove useful. It can be bought from the local supermarket. However, before using it make sure you read the instructions printed on the bottle or pack. Certain drain cleaners have chemicals that can destroy plastic drain lines – like the ones in the kitchen. Also, drain cleaner solution shouldn’t be used too often, as over time the chemicals in it can damage the plumbing system.

Vinegar and baking soda

Both these products are readily available at home and do not have the harmful effects of drain cleaning solutions. Pour half a cup of baking soda, then half a cup of vinegar and finally some boiling water to get rid of clogs and foul odor from the drain lines.

Mechanical snake

A mechanical snake can be inserted into the drain line and can be used to manually remove any clogs that the above solutions couldn’t get rid of.

If none of these solutions work, then the problem may be serious and you may need to contact a professional plumbing service in North Aurora.

How often should I have my heater checked out?

Signs Your Heating Unit Needs a Tune Up


Aurora HeatingIt is a good idea to find out if the heating unit needs a tune up before the weather gets too cold. If you locate any problems be sure to contact a professional HVAC technician who can fully inspect your heating unit properly to accurately determine the problem and ensure that any repairs that are needed are made. Additionally, the following are some precautionary signs that will let you know that the heating unit will most likely need a tune up:

If you are hearing a banging, whining or groaning noise coming from your heater this is often an indication that there is a loose belt or an ignition problem. Also, if you start receiving a larger than typical electric bill while your usage is the same, there could be several reasons why this is happening. Be sure to contact a professional if this is the case. If there is no change after several repairs you should replace the heating unit.

If you see a yellow pilot light this is an indication that there is a chemical imbalance in the heating unit. The chemicals are balanced when the pilot light is blue. When the heating unit has trouble staying on or starting the fan motor is most likely broken, there is faulty wiring or there is a damaged pilot light.

A dirty heating unit can cause mold and dust to be circulated throughout your household. This can cause breathing problems like asthma and allergies. Regular maintenance checks can help avoid this from happening. If there are warm and cold spots throughout your home it could be a sign that the heating unit is going upward into an attic instead of heating the rooms within your home.

Keep in mind that even with proper maintenance the heating unit will eventually need to be replaced with a new unit. A heating unit typically lasts about 10 to 15 years. So, if your heating unit is not working properly be sure to check it out and call a professional if necessary. The comfort and health of your family is definitely worth it!

Are you looking for a heating contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing Heating & Cooling at 630-801-8600 and get started today!

How can I make sure I’m hiring the right heating contractor?

Steps to Picking the Right Heating Contractor


Aurora HeatingHVAC contractors are responsible for installing and repairing the heating, cooling, and ventilation systems for homes and buildings. Because of the degree of skill and knowledge involved in supplying this service, finding the right HVAC contractor to handle your home’s heating needs can seem like a difficult task. In order to make the right decision, there are a few basic steps that you should follow to ensure that you hire the right heating contractor to do the job.

Instead of starting out by doing a random search online or browsing through the phone book, you should ask your friends and family for recommendations. Many homeowners often need the services of a heating contractor at some point, so it’s a good possibility that someone you know has used one. They will be able to tell you about reputable contractors that they used, or even steer you away from those that aren’t up to the task.

Whether you take a friend’s recommendation or you find a heating contractor on your own, you should make sure that the contractor you use is properly licensed in your state. Some states require different licensing requirements, so ensuring that your contractor has the right credentials will save you a great deal of trouble if any problems with your heating system arise in the future. You should also make sure that the contractor is properly insured and that they have all the proper certifications for your state as well. You can contact your local government agency to find out which credentials your contractor should have. You should also check the contractor’s credentials to make sure that they are in order.

If you choose a heating contractor that works for a company instead of one that is self employed, make sure to check the company’s rating with the Better Business Bureau to ensure that they are reputable. You should also make sure that you choose a contractor that actually inspects your heating unit to determine the cause of the problem, and gives you a report of the services you will need including parts and labor costs before they issue a quote.

Are you looking for a heating contractor in the Aurora area? Call Prestige Plumbing Heating & Cooling at 630-801-8600 and schedule a service call today!