Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Mclean’

Is It Time to Invest in a Heat Pump?

Tuesday, June 1st, 2021

You’ve probably heard the word “heat pump” a few times throughout the past few years. You’ve done some online searches, you’ve talked to friends and neighbors, and at this point you’re interested. The only problem is, your home is a bit unique. You’ve got an old home that doesn’t have ductwork, or you’ve got a unique situation where electricity actually costs more for you than it does for your friends. Your home might even deal with different temperatures than your friends, family, or neighbors. So, what do you do in your specific case?

The good news is that our team can provide expert consultation when it comes to air conditioning service in Mclean, VA. We won’t shy away from telling you the truth as far as your home’s ability to efficiently use heat pump technology goes. But let’s talk about some reasons why a heat pump might be great for your home.

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Spring is Here! Here’s What You Should Do With Your Furnace!

Monday, April 6th, 2020

question-mark-badgeYour furnace worked hard all winter to keep you and your family comfortable, so now, it’s time for you to take care of your furnace! See, when Spring rolls around, many homeowners aren’t sure what to do with their furnaces, which is why we’ve written this blog!

Below, you’ll find a mini-guide to furnace care in the Spring. All you have to do is keep reading to find out more, and of course, remember to call us when you need heating services in McLean, VA.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s get started!

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Do You Know What to Do With Your AC in the Winter?

Monday, October 7th, 2019

Autumn has officially arrived, and before you know it, we’ll be drinking pumpkin-flavored coffee, decorating for our favorite spooky holiday, and deciding who’s going to host Thanksgiving this year! But, before we can even think about all that, we must first figure out what we are going to do with our air conditioners.

Now that it’s getting cooler out, odds are, you aren’t going to need your air conditioner very much anymore. So, what do you do with it? Well, keep reading below and we’ll tell you! So, what are you waiting for?

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How Can I Tell if I Have an Indoor Air Quality Problem?

Monday, June 3rd, 2019

cold-couple-on-couchYour indoor air quality is a big deal! Of course, you want your indoor air free and clear of the contaminants that contribute to illness and allergies! But the truth of the matter is that many of us do not know that we’ve got poor indoor air quality, simply because we’ve become accustomed to it.

But there are quite a few signs that suggest you’re dealing with poor indoor air quality, and below, we’ve listed some of them for you. And remember, if any of the following apply to you, be sure to contact a professional for HVAC services in McLean, VA. A professional will be able to match you with the systems and services you need to combat your IAQ issues! 

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Is Your Furnace Showing Signs of Distress?

Monday, March 12th, 2018

furnace-wiringWe could all use some warm, sunny weather right about now, but chances are that you’re going to be running your heater for a while longer. It may be late in the season, but don’t let that convince you that you can afford to ignore any signs of trouble your home heating system may be exhibiting. Trust us when we tell you that your heater can break down just as easily at the end of the season as during any other time.

So how do you deal with heating problems before facing as serious a situation as a complete breakdown? Well, you can learn to recognize the signs that you need furnace repairs in McLean, VA, for starters. No furnace is ever going to be 100% reliable, though scheduling routine heating maintenance will certainly help it to get as close to that ideal as possible. We’re happy to tune-up your furnace for you, of course. But eventually, we’ll need to repair your system. Call us when you see these warning signs.

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Choosing an Energy Efficient Unit for Furnace Installation in McLean, VA

Monday, October 20th, 2014

Furnaces are one of the most popular heating systems for homeowners. There are two main types of furnaces, but before choosing any kind of furnace for your home, it’s important to understand how energy efficiency is rated for furnace systems. Knowing ahead of time how a new system is supposed to perform is an important part of your furnace installation in McLean, VA. Equally important is hiring experts to perform the installation. For over 10 years, Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc., has installed, repaired and replace multiple heating systems, and we bring this experience to every job we do.

What Is AFUE?

AFUE stands for annual fuel utilization efficiency. AFUE is the measure of a furnace’s efficiency in converting fuel to energy. As such, the higher an AFUE rating, the more efficient a particular system will be. One thing to understand about efficiency ratings is that they do not indicate that a system will heat better than another; what the efficiency rating tells you is that a particular system will heat the same as another, but will use less energy to do so. Currently, the minimum AFUE ratings for non-condensing, fossil-fueled furnaces is 78%, but this will change as of January 1, 2015 to 80%, so it’s important to note this upcoming change.

Energy Star

Another way to ensure that you install an energy efficient heating system is to look for the Energy Star sticker on the product. Whole-home appliances earn the ENERGY STAR rating by being at least 15% more energy efficient than the standard. If you have questions about using an Energy Star-labeled product, consult with your technician.

Types of Furnaces

There are two types of furnaces that Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc., carries:

  • Gas
  • Electric

Both can efficiently heat your home, but the heating is slightly different as gas furnaces are combustion systems and electric furnaces are not. As far as efficiency is concerned, they are almost equal: a gas furnace can have an efficiency rating as high as 98% while an electric furnace can have one as high as 100%.

Which Furnace Should I Choose?

Choosing a furnace is based largely on your needs, and working with a trained professional can help you address what’s most important, including the system that will fit best in your home.

If you are ready for a new furnace installation in McLean, VA, contact Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc., today and schedule an appointment with one of our installation experts.

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Rust on Your Furnace: What It Means

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

At first glance, it seems like it couldn’t happen. Your furnace generates heat and it doesn’t use water to do it. So how can rust show up on an operating furnace? In point of fact, rusty furnaces are not entirely uncommon. If you have rust on your furnace, it helps to know what it means before you contact your local  McLean, VA furnace repair service.

Rust is caused by the intermingling of water, oxygen and metal in a process called oxidation. In order for that to happen, all three elements need to be involved. Furnaces use oxygen for the burning process and their metal components are self-evident. So the question becomes, how does water enter the system?

If your furnace is in a damp part of the house such as a basement, then water can creep in from an outside source: dripping from a leaking pipe, for example, or gathering from a breach in the wall. But that’s not the only place it can happen. The natural gases used to fuel the furnace can contain trace amounts of water vapor. When the gases burn, the toxic components separate from the rest of the gases in the heat exchanger and are vented safely out of your home.  This includes water vapor, but if the vapor cools before it exits the flue, it can condense and cause rust damage.

The effects can’t be seen right away and may take years to manifest, but when they arise, they are devastating. Rust will corrode and destroy the metal in your furnace, forcing you to replace the affected components at great cost. In the case of the heat exchangers, rust can create actively dangerous circumstances, since a broken heat exchanger could result in toxic gases being released into your home. If you spot rust on your furnace, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc. to get it fixed. We can replace the rusty component as well as correcting the problems that created the rust n the first place. Give us a call today to set up your McLean, VA furnace repair service.

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3 Reasons to Consider a Furnace in McLean, VA

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

Nothing can fight back a snowy day like a warm, cozy household, with heating provided by a reliable furnace. Furnaces aren’t the only form of reliable heating in this neck of the woods, however. You can also find boilers, heat pumps, and many others. So what are the benefits of a furnace? What makes them a better option for heating that other technologies?

Here are 3 reasons to consider a furnace in McLean, VA:

  1. Energy efficiency. Gas furnaces tend to operate at high levels of efficiency, costing less to install and run than other forms of heating. You can easily customize them to add energy-saving upgrades like zone control and programmable thermostats.
  2. Few breakdowns. Gas furnaces suffer from wear and tear like any other mechanical system. But they are known to be both reliable and durable. That means fewer repairs and fewer complete breakdowns.
  3. Versatility. Alternate forms of heating aren’t always practical for every home, and you may need to make big changes in your home in order to accommodate them. Gas furnaces, on the other hand, are extremely flexible, and modern models have a lot of installation options.  You do need ducts for a furnace to heat your home, but they can be the same ones that are used by your central air conditioning system.

If you need more reasons to consider a furnace in McLean, VA, contact Polar Bear for sound advice and expertise. We can install a new furnace in McLean, VA, as well as setting up a reliable maintenance schedule to keep it running smoothly. Our trained technicians are dedicated to your complete satisfaction and we will discuss your options with you so that you’re completely clear on what will happen. Contact us to schedule an appointment today.

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Getting Your AC Ready for Fall

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

McLean, VA experiences a lot of heat and humidity in the summertime, and residents learn to appreciate the value of a good air conditioning system. As summer turns to fall and the temperatures drop, however, you probably find yourself using your air conditioning less and less. A little fall maintenance is a good idea, both to keep your air conditioning unit functioning at its best and to prevent any nasty surprises when you fire it up again next spring.

For starters, perform a visual inspection of your outdoor air conditioning unit. Clear any leaves, twigs and other debris, and trim back any shrubs or tree branches that may be too close to its vents. If you’re certain that warm weather won’t return, shut off the breaker switch connected to your air conditioning unit. It saves on electricity and can protect the unit from any unexpected surge or electrical malfunction.

The fall is also a good time to schedule a maintenance check from a qualified professional. A service technician can come to you home, check the system for any potential problems, clean the coils, replace the air filters and perform similar operations to keep your air conditioner functioning at top capacity. The fall is an especially good time to do this because there will be plenty of time to conduct any larger repairs without worrying about the next heat wave barreling down on you.

A qualified McLean, VA air conditioning service technician can be a great partner when getting your AC ready for the fall. Not only can he or she perform quality maintenance on your unit, but also schedule any larger servicing issues and recommend any changes to your system that might reduce your monthly energy costs. The professionals at Polar Bear have years of experience at their disposal and conduct operations with the utmost concern for your satisfaction. Call us today if you need air conditioning service in McLean, VA. 

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Alexandria, VA Air Conditioning Tip: Cutting Cooling Costs

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Energy prices seem to always be on the rise, which is why more and more homeowners are looking for ways to cut cooling costs. At Polar Bear, we understand that our customers want to stay cool in their homes but they don’t want to pay an arm and a leg to do it. That’s why we decided to put together a quick list of some of the things that you can do in order to reduce the amount of energy that you use to cool your home. Give us a call today if you need air conditioning repair, maintenance or installation in Alexandria, VA,  and we’ll be able to help.

  • Run the fan – Whenever it’s possible, run the fans in your home in addition to your air conditioning system. By plugging in an area fan or turning on your ceiling fans, you can make your rooms feel cooler without needing to turn down the thermostat. Fans can also help circulate the air conditioned air throughout your rooms.
  • Use curtains – During the day, keep the curtains on south face windows closed. This can help prevent solar heat gain. Installing ENERGY STAR rated windows can also make a big difference in how much the sun heats up your home during the day.
  • Use water – Our bodies produce sweat when we’re hot because as the sweat evaporates, it actually cools our body. You can use the same principle in other ways around your house. Consider soaking some towels or rags in cool water and placing them on your neck or wrists. As the water evaporates it will cool your body.
  • Install a programmable thermostat – Programmable thermostats allow you to automatically adjust the temperature in your home based on time of day. If there is a time during the day that your home is usually empty, such as when everyone is at work or school, you can program your AC to turn off. It can turn back on before you come home, which keeps you comfortable and helps you save energy.

Saving energy is good for the environment and for your wallet. Follow these simple tips to cut down on your cooling costs this summer. If you have any questions about our Alexandria, VA air conditioning services, make sure that you call Polar Bear.

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