How Do I Know If I Need Furnace Services for My Long Island Home?

Winter has been brutal this year, the snowy, cold weather seemingly endless. Many people have relied on their furnaces more than usual this year. That has meant that their furnaces are working overtime – and sometimes that can lead to mechanical issues, especially if the furnace hasn’t received the regular maintenance it needs. It can be a little difficult to know if you need furnace services for your Long Island home, and who’s qualified to get you the help you need.

Clearly, if you notice anything like strange odors or unusual noises like banging or grinding coming from your furnace, call us right away because those point to serious concerns. We’re sharing a few more general concerns that can point to the need for furnace services below, courtesy of ENERGY STAR.

Five Signs That You Need Furnace Services

Rising Energy Bills

This can be a tough one to recognize, especially if you’ve been running your furnace more than usual. But, if your energy bills have increased dramatically, or if you notice a spike in cost from the beginning of the season to now, you could have some mechanical concerns happening. A marked increase in energy costs that can’t be accounted for by rising prices and/or usage could indicate your equipment isn’t operating as efficiently and effectively as it should, and should probably be checked out.

Hot or Cold Spots

If some of your rooms are way too warm, but others seem chilly, this could mean your equipment is operating improperly. It could also point to other problems in your home, like ductwork concerns or poor insulation. When you call T.F. O’Brien, we’ll help you get to the root of the hot/cold spot problem.

Air Quality Problems

If you’ve noticed an increase of dust and air particles over the course of winter, it could be a sign of concern for your heating system. While it could indicate that you have leaky ductwork in areas like attics, crawl spaces or basement, there could be another problem that’s far simpler to solve. Poor indoor air quality is often a sign of a dirty filter – and that can be easily remedied. It is generally recommended that equipment filters be changed monthly during times of heavy use. You can either DIY, or give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.

Unusual Dryness

Sometimes when furnace services are needed, homeowners will notice that their homes are unusually dry. Some indicators of overly dry air include itchy skin, nasal dryness, respiratory issues, creaking woodwork and furniture, and static cling. If you’re noticing a combination of these factors happening in your home, it could point to poor equipment operation, inadequately sized equipment, or ductwork concerns. 

Older Equipment

It’s just a fact – the older your furnace is, the harder it has to work to heat your home and the less efficient it is. If your furnace is more than 10 years old, it could be time to start thinking about a replacement, especially if you’ve been paying a lot for repairs or your energy bills are exorbitant. Hint: you can prolong the life of your furnace by getting annual maintenance.

You can count on T.F. O’Brien if you need furnace services for your Long Island home.

Just give us a call at 516.488.1800, and we’ll be more than happy to help you get the furnace services you need.

7 Reasons You Need Annual HVAC System Maintenance

HVAC Technician Inspects Heating and Cooling SystemConcerned about keeping your heating and cooling system in the best possible condition? No worries – annual maintenance can help! According to the Department of Energy, not getting system maintenance can lead to inefficiency and a steady decline in equipment performance.

 

Keeping your heating and cooling equipment well-maintained is crucial; T.F. O’Brien’s professional trained HVAC service technicians can help.

Still not sure annual HVAC system maintenance is what you need? Here are seven benefits that both your heating and cooling systems will enjoy:

1. Less worry about the safety of your HVAC system. 

Much like taking your vehicle for an annual tune-up, our technicians will inspect your entire HVAC system and equipment. They’ll check heating systems for issues like carbon monoxide, and cooling systems for refrigerant leaks. They’ll make sure electrical components are in good working order, so you can count on your system’s safety.

2. You’ll avoid an HVAC system breakdown at the worst possible time.

Maintenance keeps your heating and cooling system clean, and takes care of minor problems and repairs. Lack of cleaning and tune-up can, unfortunately, lead to a breakdown at the most inopportune time – either the coldest of winter nights, or a scorching summer day. That’s when we’re at our busiest, too, so finding immediate service can be a frustrating challenge.

3. You won’t void your HVAC system warranty.

Many manufacturers require that your heating and cooling system is regularly maintained in order to keep the warranty intact. Not getting the maintenance you need can mean you’ll be stuck with a major breakdown – and costly repairs that your warranty will no longer cover.

4. You’ll stay more comfortable all year-round.

Your home’s HVAC system needs to be at peak performance in order to keep your home toasty warm during the colder months, and cool and comfortable in the summer. With annual maintenance, you can count on better airflow. Not to mention, repairs or replacements can be made to any components not in proper working order

5. Your HVAC system will enjoy a longer life. 

When you make sure that your heating and cooling systems are properly maintained, you’re helping to ensure that they run better. Maintenance ensures a cleaned and lubricated system. It frees it of the gunk and buildup that can cause your system to run poorly. And, small issues are found and repaired easily before they cause premature system failure.

6. You’ll save money on heating and cooling. 

When you call for maintenance, part of the service includes cleaning of your system. That’s important, because when a heating or cooling system is dirty it works harder, and much less efficiently – taking more money from your wallet when it comes time to pay utility bills.

7. Your whole family will breathe easier. 

Changing the air filter is an important part of HVAC maintenance. When your system circulates air through a dirty filter, those particles make their way into the air you and your family breathe. Getting the seasonal maintenance your system needs keeps indoor air free of mold, pollen and dust.

To take advantage of all of these great benefits, and have a qualified HVAC service technician inspect your system – call T.F. O’Brien today. We look forward to helping you with your annual maintenance needs – just give our service department a call at 516-488-1800 Monday through Friday between 8:30am and 4:30pm, and we’ll be happy to assist you! You can also Schedule your HVAC System Maintenance by clicking here.

 

Show Your Furnace the Love This Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is all about hearts and flowers, so adding your home’s furnace into the equation might not exactly seem like the most romantic thing to do. But did you know that if you show your furnace a little love by getting it the maintenance it needs, it’ll save you money? And that’s extra money you can spend on special gifts for your Valentine!

 

Here are five ways maintenance gives your furnace the love it needs:

  • Annual maintenance helps your furnace operate more efficiently. Maintenance helps to free your furnace of dirt and debris buildup, and keeps all the moving parts well lubricated so that it runs, quite literally, like a well-oiled machine. And when it operates more efficiently, you’ll likely save money on your utility bills.
  • Maintenance can keep the need for repairs at bay. It helps catch small problems before they become larger, much more expensive issues. That’s because qualified technicians are analyzing your system on an annual basis, and can easily spot any concerns that might become bigger problems for you down the road.
  • A well-maintained furnace is a longer-lived furnace. As mentioned above, annual maintenance helps find potential problems and allows you to take care of them right away. And, maintenance keeps your furnace clean and operating efficiently, which can add to its lifespan.
  • Preventive maintenance keeps your warranty intact. You might not realize this, but chances are if you read the fine print on your equipment warranty, you’ll see that annual maintenance is required. Most manufacturers view annual maintenance as a reasonable measure the homeowner can take to keep equipment running smoothly. And, not getting maintenance may void your warranty.
  • The air in your home stays cleaner, too. One of the best ways you can help maintain your furnace is by cleaning or changing the filter when it becomes dirty. The air that flows through the filter into your home will contain fewer contaminants as a result. Not only will you breathe easier, but also your furnace will operate better when it doesn’t have to force air through a dirty filter. We’ll clean or change your filter during your annual maintenance, but ideally you should change it monthly during times of high usage.

Getting annual maintenance from T.F. O’Brien is easy.

At T.F. O’Brien, we love providing our customers with the services they need to keep their furnaces running effectively and efficiently all year long. And, showing your furnace the love it needs this winter is easy when you work with us. All you need to do is call us at 516.488.1800, or request an appointment online, and we’ll be more than happy to schedule your maintenance appointment with you.

5 Tips for Decluttering Your Home After the Holidays

The holidays have come and gone, and it’s a brand new year. Many people start off the new year by making resolutions, some for themselves, and some for their homes. If you’d like to make some home improvements in 2019, one of the best ways you can get started is by eliminating some of the clutter. It’s easy for our homes to accumulate lots of junk over the years. Sometimes we buy more than what we need. Sometimes, it’s tough to get rid of the things that are taking up space. And sometimes, we hold onto things thinking we’ll eventually use it, but that day never comes.

As a result, our homes become stuffed with “stuff” and become uncomfortable for us and our families. That’s why decluttering is so important. It not only allows us to weed out items that are no longer useful to us (and give them to those who may be able to use them), but it opens up space in our homes so that we can enjoy a better quality of life. For instance, a room that once contained storage boxes and “junk” can be repurposed into a home theater room. Or, a garage can be cleaned out so you can actually park your car in there! Getting started on decluttering your home can be tough, though.

We’re offering five easy tips that can help you get started:

  1. Take it one room at a time. Don’t get caught up in the idea that you have to declutter your whole house in a day. Take it easy and pace yourself, and you’ll do a much more thorough job and feel more accomplished as you see each space transform.
  2. Make sure you have storage containers. Nothing is worse than organizing your space, only to find you don’t have adequate storage. And, only store those things you know you’ll use again. For instance, say you’re organizing ornaments. Throw away the broken ones, give away those you don’t use, and store the ones that you’re sure will adorn your tree.
  3. Make it a feel-good venture. Sometimes kids especially don’t want to part with books, toys and clothing. If you encourage them to do so, and explain that giving these items to charitable organizations will help kids just like them in need, you’ll be creating a lifelong habit of giving. Lead by example, and show them the things you’re willing to give up, too.
  4. Follow the 12-month rule. When assessing what you need to get rid of in your home, the first thing to do is to evaluate when the last time was you used an item. If it was a year or more ago, probably you don’t need it, and should part with it.
  5. Go paperless. Many times, our homes get cluttered with mail. While we can’t keep junk mail and flyers from arriving, you can reduce the amount of mail entering your home by going paperless. Utility, credit card and insurance companies often provide a paperless choice for billing and paying, so if you can, choose that option – and keep a lot of unnecessary mail from invading your space.

Speaking of getting rid of debris in your home, have you checked your furnace filter in a while? A dirty furnace filter not only sends all sorts of dirt into the air, it also forces your equipment to run harder. And while we can’t help you with your decluttering, we can help ensure your furnace filter is fresh and clean! Just give us a call at 516.488.1800, and we’ll be happy to help meet your furnace maintenance needs.

Getting Your Home Holiday-Ready

Ready or not, here they come. That’s right, folks – the holidays are upon us. While you may be riding the struggle bus to get yourself in the mindset for the holidays and everything they entail, getting your home holiday ready is a much simpler undertaking.

Let’s start with those holiday lights. Do those endless strands of twinkling lights make you cringe as you think about what they’re going to do to your energy bill? We recommend switching over to LED lights. Of course there is an initial investment to be made but it won’t take long before they’ve already paid for themselves. Additionally, they’re more durable, don’t burn out and are much safer to use, both indoors and out, because they don’t get hot.

Speaking of safety, we would be remiss to not mention some tips to keep you and yours safe from dangers within your home this holiday season (and no, we’re not talking about the in-laws here!). On average, U.S. fire departments respond to about 50 house fires each year caused by Christmas trees. To prevent your family from becoming a negative holiday statistic we recommend keeping your tree at least three feet from all heat sources and avoid placing it in a corner at all costs. Fires that start in corners are found to spread more quickly and get hot faster than those that start in other parts of the home. You also want to be sure to keep all exits and pathways clear in the event of an emergency (a tip you can use to rationalize purchasing fewer gifts too!)

Will that jolly old elf be struggling to get down your chimney this year? He won’t if you’ve recently had it cleaned and inspected. Chimney fires account for more than 25,000 fires annually and often spread to the main structure of the home. The good, and bad, news about chimney fires is that they can be prevented with regular inspection and cleaning.

We hope that you’ve had your furnace serviced for the season but if you haven’t we recommend making an appointment to do so as soon as possible. Not only will a clean furnace run more smoothly and efficiently, but also a thorough inspection by a certified technician will allow you to identify any potential problems that you may be likely to encounter during this holiday and heating season. The last thing anyone wants this time of the year are unexpected guests and unexpected home repairs so when it comes to your heating system it is certainly better to be proactive rather than reactive. Additionally, check those smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure that they are current and that their power supply is fresh.

Surviving the holidays is a team effort and when it comes to prepping your house, T.F. O’Brien is on your side. Give us a call today at 516.488.1800 and let us give you the gift of peace of mind this year.

Shamrock Savings from T.F. O’Brien!

Happy March from all of us here at T.F. O’Brien! We love this time of year, because it means St. Patrick’s Day is upon us, and spring is right around the corner. It also means we’re gearing up for our annual Shamrock Savings event. What’s so special about this sale? We pull out all the stops to get our valued customers into a great new high-efficiency home comfort system, by giving them our best offer of the year!
When you choose to take advantage of our Shamrock Savings event, you won’t just be installing a top-performing system in your home. We’re also including some terrific add-ons that will make your home more comfortable and your life easier. Couple that with incredible rebates, and you’ll be enjoying the best in home comfort in no time – for less!

Learn more about our Shamrock Sales event, and how you can save “green” all year long.

Click here to learn more about how you can save, and be sure to check out our 2018 Shamrock Savings commercial! And, did you know installing high-efficiency equipment in your home can help you save the “green” now – and for years to come? Here’s how.
And, it’s never too early to get on board with your spring maintenance needs. Give us a call at 516.488.1800 to schedule your spring preventive maintenance appointment today!
Thanks for reading. Best wishes for a magical March!
Kerry

Why Upgrade to High Efficiency HVAC? Here Are Five Reasons!

As you know, our Shamrock Sale is going on right now, and that can help you get into a new high efficiency system. With this sale, you’ll be able to save money – but is there any other benefit to choosing high efficiency equipment? ENERGY STAR, a branch of the U.S. Department of Energy, says yes, and gives a few reasons why switching is a great choice.

Your home will be more energy-efficient. Of course, this seems like a given, considering we’re talking about high-efficiency equipment. But you might be surprised at just how much more efficient it will be. An AC system installed in the 1990s, for instance, is about 50 percent less efficient than today’s air conditioning. That’s a pretty big deal.

You’ll save money on your energy bills. Who doesn’t want to see their utility bills decrease? Most people who choose to have high-efficiency air conditioning properly installed in their homes by qualified technicians can enjoy savings on energy bills, even during the hottest months of summer.

You’ll help the planet. When you use less energy, you also help prevent carbon pollution are help to reduce other greenhouse gases from being emitted into the atmosphere. On top of that, modern air conditioning systems use a much more efficient and environmentally sound form of refrigerant that does not harm the ozone layer.

You can save even more energy. Modern air conditioners are already more efficient than their predecessors. But high-efficiency, ENERGY STAR-qualified systems can save you even more – up to 15 percent! Imagine your energy savings – and utility bill savings – on a system that could be 65 percent more efficient than the one you currently own.

You can save thousands when you make the change now. Yes, you heard that right – thousands. With our Shamrock Sale, you can save $3,192 on a new, high-efficiency system. Not only will you get great rebates on select systems, but you’ll also be eligible to receive both a free humidifier and a free Wi-Fi thermostat with a complete high-efficiency system installation.

When you combine our offer with special financing (with approved credit), you have a great deal. And, this is our best offer this year – but you have to act quickly. Once St. Patrick’s Day arrives, this pot of gold disappears! Our Shamrock Sale ends on March 17, 2018. To take advantage of this great opportunity – and enjoy a more energy-efficient home, call T. F. O’Brien today at 516.488.1800.

Start Off Your New Year in Comfort, With a Replacement System

Is one of your New Year’s resolutions to conserve energy? Then you should definitely take a look around your home. No doubt, there are ways you can save energy by making some home improvements. Choosing LED lighting, unplugging charging cords and reversing ceiling fans to push warm air down into your living space during the winter months are all easy ways to save energy in your home. If you have to crank up the thermostat to stay comfortable during the winter, though, you probably need to take a closer look at your home.

There are many factors that can cause your home to use more energy than it should. Drafty, old windows, inadequate insulation and old, inefficient heating equipment can all be likely suspects. You’ll want to take care of all the problems in your home in order to ensure maximum efficiency. That makes people nervous, because those repairs and replacements can be costly. However, many people find that once they make these changes, their energy savings is significant. What’s more, they save money in the long run on their utility bills.

Replacing your old system can help you save energy, save money and enjoy better comfort.

Today’s heating systems are built with efficiency in mind, many achieving 95 percent efficiency or better. That means more of the heat they generate stays in your home, keeping your home warmer while using less energy. And that savings is reflected in your monthly utility bills. You’ll be able to stay warm for less! Not to mention, when you trust the professionals at T.F. O’Brien to help, we’ll make sure your new system is sized right for your home.

Often, older systems in homes lose efficiency because of remodeling changes to the home or added space. So if your system was installed in your home, say, 20 years ago, your home today might be much different. Our experts are trained to analyze the current heating needs of your home, so the system they install will keep your whole house warm, efficiently. And, you can trust T.F. O’Brien to install the best quality products in your home. Not only will they provide you with energy efficiency and comfort, but they are built to last for years to come.

When you’re ready to take the next step toward a more energy-efficient home, T.F. O’Brien can help. We’ll provide you with a new heating system installation that offers high-quality energy efficiency, energy efficiency and durability. We proudly serve all of Long Island, including Nassau CountySuffolk County, and Brooklyn. Simply call us at 516.488.1800 for assistance.

T.F. O’Brien Can Bring You Comfort & Joy – Even in an Emergency!

This is the time of year for festivities, food, family… and freezing temperatures. Unfortunately, the colder it gets outside, the more we need to use our heating system. And the harder our heating systems work, the greater chance for a breakdown. Luckily, you don’t have to let a broken down furnace or boiler be the grinch that steals your holiday cheer. Just rely on the folks at T.F. O’Brien to help you get the repair services you need.

We know there’s no good time for a heating system breakdown. But when your house is full of nieces, nephews and your great-aunt Bethany, a furnace or boiler failure is even worse. You don’t want to spend the holiday huddled in your living room in your winter outerwear – and you don’t have to. We offer exceptional repair service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – even on holidays.

T.F. O’Brien offers emergency services on most makes and models of heating systems.

Our technicians are highly skilled in furnace and boiler repair. They have the qualifications to repair most makes and models of equipment. As a result, your heating system concern will be remedied correctly. You and your family will be sipping your eggnog in comfort in no time flat! And while it may not seem very shiny or glamorous, you can always give a gift that keeps on giving – a seasonal maintenance contract from T.F. O’Brien.

When you have a seasonal maintenance contract with us, an emergency repair situation is far less likely. That’s because our technicians will thoroughly inspect and maintain your equipment before winter starts. They’ll make sure any problems are addressed right away. That way, small concerns are taken care of before they become large – and potentially expensive – repairs. Not to mention, if you do experience a furnace or boiler breakdown, you’ll receive priority service. That saves you from having too much of a wait in a chilly house with a bevy of cold, complaining relatives – and isn’t that well worth it?

Trust T.F. O’Brien with your emergency heating repair needs.

Don’t be left out in the cold this holiday season – count on us to help you stay warm no matter how frightful the weather outside may get. When you need heating repair in Long Island, T.F. O’Brien is ready to assist you. T.F. O’Brien proudly serves all of Long Island, including Nassau CountySuffolk County, and Brooklyn. Just give us a call at 516.488.1800.

Holiday Cheer from T.F. O’Brien

Thanks for reading Kerry’s Monthly Message for December. The holiday season is here, and we’re looking forward to special times with friends and family. The scent of Christmas cookies baking in the oven, the twinkling of lights in the windows, and the joyful, giving nature that the season seems to bring out in us are just a few of the reasons that we love this time of year.

Of course, there is no good time for a furnace or boiler breakdown, but during the holiday season it’s that much worse. At T.F. O’Brien, we understand that heating emergencies can happen at the most inconvenient times. That’s why we’re here for you – nights, weekends and even holidays. If you need emergency services, call us at 516.488.1800, and we’ll be happy to help you. 

We love this time of year – especially giving gifts! Need some ideas? Read on…

This December, we have some gift ideas for the person on your list who has everything – why not give the gift of HVAC? And, if you’re wondering the best way to keep your furnace running optimally this winter, there’s one simple thing you can do. Find out what it is by clicking here! Additionally, here are a few ways you can save energy – and ultimately money on your utility bills – this winter. 

We hope you and yours have a joyous Christmas or Hanukkah season, and we wish you the very best for a happy New Year. See you in 2018! 

Thanks for reading, 

Kerry