The Geiler Company Blog

My Home is Muggy

[fa icon='calendar'] Jun 22, 2020 2:21:07 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in indoor air quality, HVAC, Humidity

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Why does my house feel muggy? 

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The air doesn’t seem to come out of the register like it should….

[fa icon='calendar'] Jun 22, 2020 1:01:00 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in air conditioning, HVAC

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Low air flow out of your HVAC ducts can be frustrating, especially if you are uncomfortably hot or cold.  If the air is not flowing like it should in your home, there are a number of possibilities.  

Clogged air filters:  Filters are designed to be part of the overall air flow process.  If they are clogged because they haven't been changed, they will block air flow.  Not only will this hold back your much desired warm or cold air, it could eventually cause damage to your HVAC system by causing components to work harder until they fail.  In general, filters need to be changed every 60 days.  It should happen more often in homes with a high number of pets or in an otherwise dusty or dirty environment.

Too much air filter: Filters come with a MERV rating for their efficiency from 1 to 16, with the higher numbers being more efficient.  If you buy filters that are in the 15 or 16 range, they will hold back air while filtering it strongly.  If you suffer from allergies or other health problems, you may be willing to trade a stronger filter for less air flow.  However, if you don't need a strong filter, climbing back down the filter scale will allow more air flow.

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Why don't I have enough hot water?

[fa icon='calendar'] Jun 15, 2020 10:36:27 AM / by Reid Geiler posted in Plumbing, Tankless Water Heater

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Why don't I have enough hot water? 

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Is that musty smell in my house unhealthy?

[fa icon='calendar'] May 25, 2020 2:24:00 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in indoor air quality, mold, Smell, HVAC

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Will I get sick from a musty smell in my house?  It depends on what's causing the smell.

Most musty smells come from household mold, which grows in dark places with little ventilation and high humidity.  That's why houses that have been shut up for a long time end up smelling musty.

The mold you can smell is harmless in most cases, but if it's particularly strong, it's a good idea to get it tested by an HVAC professional.  The Geiler Company can help.

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Does heat or dry air cause nosebleeds?

[fa icon='calendar'] May 18, 2020 2:11:00 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in HVAC, Humidifier, Humidity

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Are nosebleeds caused by heat?  They can be.

Unless there is an underlying health issue like high blood pressure, most minor nosebleeds happen when the blood vessels near the surface at the front of the nose break.  This can happen because the skin inside the nose on the septum (the part that separates the nostrils) gets dry and cracks.  Many times, this dryness is made worse by the heat source in your home which tends to dry out the air.  Lower humidity means more frequent nosebleeds for people who are prone to get them.

Other causes of the dry nasal passages that lead to nosebleeds include using an antihistamine or decongestant and frequent nose-blowing.  The sudden increase in pressure when blowing the nose can rupture the blood vessels in the septum.

The problem can be easily solved by placing a humidifier in the room or rooms where the person getting the nosebleed spends most of their time.  Usually that's in the sleeping area and in the common areas of the home.  The Geiler Company carries a full line of humidifiers for every type of home.  Another solution is to put a small amount of petroleum jelly on the septum area of the nose to keep the area moist and covered.

If nosebleeds persist after taking these measures or they become serious, it's time to see a doctor.  As mentioned above, high blood pressure can cause nosebleeds, as can bleeding or clotting disorders.

If you do get a nosebleed, get something like a cloth or tissue to block the blood from leaving the nose, sit up or stand and lean your head forward.  Pinch your nostrils together at the top of your nose and hold them closed for ten minutes.  The pressure will stop the bleeding, so resist the temptation to stop pinching your nostrils too soon to see if the bleeding has stopped.  If the bleeding won't stop, seek medical attention.

After you've stopped the nosebleed, don't strain yourself (which raises blood pressure) and try not to blow your nose for 24 hours.

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Does it make sense to insulate my furnace ducts?

[fa icon='calendar'] May 11, 2020 1:53:00 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in furnace

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Should I insulate my furnace ducts?  Yes, you should.  Insulating your furnace ducts will help your furnace transport heated air more efficiently throughout your home.  Better heating capacity means the furnace will run less, which will save you money on electricity and other energy costs.

Leaking duct work can send heated air into crawl spaces under your home or into your attic instead of where you want it.  To keep this from happening, you will have to do a little detective work to check for leaks.  Get to where the duct work is and check for sections that should be together but have separated over time and also check for holes.  While the system is running, slowly move your hand over the duct work to see if you feel any air escaping.  If you do, mark the area with a pen or tape.  Once you have found areas that you can seal off yourself, make sure you use duct mastic or other sealants that are approved for heat.  Regular duct tape will not last long enough to make it worth using.   Professionals should also take a look at unconditioned spaces to make sure everything is working properly once you finish your minor repairs.

If you come across large gaps in your duct work or a number of holes, it's time to call in a professional.  Once a system reaches a certain age, it becomes safer and more cost effective in the long run to replace it rather than be on the constant lookout for more minor leaks.

The Geiler Company can inspect your home and come up with the best solution for you based on the age of the system in your home, your square footage and other factors.   Call us at 513-574-0025   or Send a TEXT for a fast and professional estimate so you can get the most out of your home heating system for years to come.

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What is that hissing sound coming from my toilet?

[fa icon='calendar'] May 4, 2020 1:40:29 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in Plumbing

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Why do I hear a hissing sound from my toilet?   It's because water or air is moving through your water line into your toilet tank.

Let's talk about water first, which is usually an easy fix once you find the problem.  Toilets have what's called a refill valve.  It controls how much water goes back into the tank after you flush.  If the refill valve is not working properly, you can end up with too little or too much water after each flush.

A hissing sound can mean that the refill valve is still letting a tiny bit of water into the tank because it hasn't shut off like it's designed to.  The valve shuts off automatically based on the water level in the tank.  A faulty valve or one not set properly will keep running.  When you hear the hissing sound, take the lid off your toilet tank.  The first thing to check is to see if water is running down the overflow pipe.  If it is, your refill valve is not shutting off when the tank is full.  That means that water is constantly going down the refill tank and running up your water bill. 

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What is measured in a water quality test?

[fa icon='calendar'] Apr 28, 2020 1:23:00 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in water, Smell, Water Quality, Hard Water, Rotten Egg Smell

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What is measured in a water quality test?  A lot of things.

Water quality tests are important in a number of ways.  The Environmental Protection Agency has minimum standards for drinking water that must be met at every step of the process.  That starts at the water source, extends through the water processing plant and delivery system to your home.  State and local regulations also apply to water quality.

So what is measured when determining water quality?  New homes and existing wells are tested for the presence of coliform bacteria, which is very important.   The best known coliform to many people is e. coli, which can make you very sick.  Your water should test negative for coliform.

There are a number of other properties to test when determining water quality.

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Hard Water and Tankless Water Heaters

[fa icon='calendar'] Apr 21, 2020 12:56:00 PM / by Reid Geiler posted in Water Quality, Hard Water

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How important is water quality for tankless water heaters?  Very important when it comes to the hardness of the water. 

Water hardness is caused when minerals are present.  Usually, the culprits are calcium and lime.  When water is heated, the minerals tend to clump up and cause scale deposits.  In traditional water heaters, these deposits usually just sink to the bottom of the tank and go unnoticed.  But with a tankless water heater, the deposits can form inside the unit, eventually clogging it up or releasing the deposits into appliances like your washing machine or dishwasher.

The water in the Cincinnati area is very hard, so that is something to consider when you have a tankless water heater.  Without a water softening system, the tankless heater should be flushed at least once a year to prevent damage to it or other household appliances.  The Geiler Company can do this work for you. 

If you are in the market for a more permanent solution, the Geiler Company has a full range of water softening options that will fit the bill in your home and still allow you to enjoy the benefits of a tankless water heater.  One such option is the Scale Stik, which is an electricity and salt-free way to keep your water soft with very little expense or hassle.

The type and amount of water softening you need depends on a number of factors, including your amount of hot water use and the type of tankless water heater you have.  Each model has a specified level of water hardness that it can deal with before it becomes a problem. 

Call or TEXT the Geiler Company at 513-574-0025 for an evaluation of your water quality and your tankless water system.  We will make sure that your hot water needs are met in the most efficient and affordable way possible.

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Does water have a taste?

[fa icon='calendar'] Apr 13, 2020 8:30:00 AM / by Reid Geiler posted in Water Quality

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Does water have a taste?  The short answer is yes.

Research done on the perception of taste in water shows that there are a number of factors at play, including what minerals are present in the water, where the water comes from and the unique biology of the taster.  That's why some people will insist that their water has a taste and others can't taste a thing.

Let's start with the minerals.  Water from natural sources like rivers, springs or wells all have microscopic bits of minerals in them, even after the filtering process.  If you look at a bottle of water or get a water quality report from your municipal provider, you will find a measurement of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS on the label) in parts per million (PPM).  All this means is that minerals are present.  Research has shown that bicarbonate, sulfate, calcium and magnesium are the four minerals that affect taste the most.

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