Top 5 Home Heating Problems To Avoid This Winter

Posted On January 3rd, 2019 by Lanz HVAC




Winter is here! With Illinois winters come frigid temperatures in the 20s and 30s, sometimes lower, and usually no small amount of snow. Winter around Champaign County means plenty of time spent indoors in the company of family, some favorite electronic devices and your trusty HVAC heating system.

But how do homeowners know if their home’s heater is really up to to the task? What could be wrong with your HVAC system this winter, and what can be done to prevent being left in the cold? Ignoring the signs of small issues could result in BIG problems later…

Symptoms of an HVAC unit or a heat pump that is NOT up to winter duty include:

  • frequent power-cycling of the furnace unit (turning on and off and on, and so on)
  • noises, such as loud clangs and whistles
  • noticeable loss of heat and uneven distribution of warm air within your home

To make sure our customers are as informed as possible, we have some great tips to share on some of our most frequently seen wintertime HVAC/home-heating problems around Central Illinois, so folks might know better whether their heater can beat the winter weather.

Issue No. 1: Frozen pipes, coils and valves.

When the outside temperature falls below the freezing point of water (32 degrees Fahrenheit at sea-level pressure), your HVAC system’s network of pipes, valves and coils freezes too. When water can’t flow, steam radiators and other hydronic systems fail, and heating stops. Ice can expand and burst pipes. To prevent, drain pipes of all water before the first freezing night, as well as other standard winterizing tasks.

Issue No. 2: Malfunctioning or underperforming heat pump.

If your home relies on an outdoor heat pump, that external apparatus sits exposed to winter’s worst elements. Heavy snow, ice and frost can block coils and bust mechanical parts. Take advantage of the heat pump’s automatic defrosting features, or make sure frost does not accumulate on the unit.

Issue No. 3: Dirty heater filters and restricted airflow.

In winter, people tend to run their heating systems full-blast. Extended usage causes buildup of dust, dirt and debris within vents and air ducts, and on fans and motors. Keep a clean HVAC filter by changing or cleaning it monthly, and don’t forget to have the system’s ductwork professionally cleaned.

Issue No. 4: Broken ignition system and extinguished or insufficient pilot light.

The pilot light is the small gas-powered flame in the center of your heating unit that essentially keeps your heater heating. If for any reason it goes out or weakens - due to a damaged sensor, for example - your home’s HVAC will suddenly put out far less heat.

Issue No. 5: Broken, miscalibrated or faulty thermostat.

Aging electronic circuitry has been known to cause HVAC systems to put out incorrect levels of heat. Loose wiring, rusted connections and other electrical problems should be repaired or replaced for best energy efficiency - as well as temperature certainty.

Special Bonus Pro Tip from the Life-Threatening Category: Carbon monoxide leakages.

To produce heat, many types of heaters make carbon monoxide (CO) as a byproduct. If a heating unit has cracks, rust or other defects, this deadly poisonous yet odorless and tasteless gas could waft undetected by the human nose and be a silent killer.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is a rare but tragic occurrence, so keep obstructions from blocking airflow out of kitchens and basements, and always maintain a working CO monitor/detector, preferably on each level of your home.

One of the many amazing benefits of modern first-world living is air-conditioning technology that literally keeps people comfy and warm against the bracing harsh chill of a Midwestern winter. Make sure your HVAC system is up to snuff with a little homeowner care and regular checkups by our expert techs.

Before HVAC problems happen in your home this winter (or when they do) - call Lanz Heating & Cooling Inc. - a proud Illinois company serving Champaign, Piatt, Ford, Vermilion, Douglas, Iroquois and McLean counties - at 217-355-5512 or 1-800-AIR-REPAIR.

About Lanz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing: Founded by HVAC contracting veteran Troy Lanz of Illinois, in 2002, Lanz Inc. has grown in number of employees and in services offered to the homeowners and commercial businesses of Champaign County, Il. Lanz Inc. now employs more than 50 highly qualified professionals providing certified installations, repairs and maintenance of heating and cooling systems, heat pumps, air handlers, dehumidifiers, humidifiers, indoor air quality control systems, ductless split systems and geothermal solutions, plus cleaning of drains, vents and air ducts. Ask about our Comfort Club. Please call Lanz Inc. at 1-800-AIR-REPAIR or 217-355-5512 and connect with Lanz Inc. on the web at www.LanzInc.com.

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How to Save Money on Your Utility Bills with a New HVAC System

Posted On December 11th, 2018 by Lanz HVAC

Want to Save More Money? Replace Your Home’s HVAC System Sooner Rather Than Later



Are you starting to get sticker shock when looking at your utility bills? You’re not alone. All across the country utility rates are going up. Many homes also have aging HVAC systems that are not as efficient as modern systems.

But many homeowners are still reluctant to invest in a new HVAC system. The truth is, if you want to save as much as money as possible, it may be best to replace your home’s aging HVAC system sooner rather than later.


Understanding HVAC Lifespans

HVAC units aren’t designed to last forever. Over time they begin to be less efficient and are more prone to breaking down and wearing out. Over the past decade, HVAC technology has increased much faster than it ever before.

How long should you expect your HVAC system to last? The actual lifespan of your specific system will vary depending on the manufacturer, your usage, and the maintenance history of the unit. However, on average after ten years HVAC systems start to break down more frequently, fewer technicians are willing to work on aging units, and the units become much more expensive to operate than newer ones.


The Repair or Replace Debate

Many homeowners are stuck wondering if they should repair a broken HVAC system or simply replace it. If your system is only a year or two old, it may still be covered by manufacturer warranties. It is almost always cheaper to repair newer systems rather than replace them.

However, if your system is close to being ten years old, or older, you should consider buying a replacement. After the ten-year mark, repairs will become more frequent and more expensive. Parts will be harder to come by, and you may also start to have difficulty finding technicians willing to work on older units.


Energy and Cost Savings with New HVAC Systems

The good news is that investing in a new HVAC system for your home comes with many benefits. First, you will see a big reduction in your energy bills. Many studies show that installing a new HVAC system can reduce utility bills by as much as 20%. Depending on your home and usage, you could be saving over $1,000 a year.

But, installing a new HVAC system has more benefits beyond just reducing your utility bills.

Depending on your situation, you may also qualify for tax deductions or tax credits when you install an energy efficient HVAC system. Tax credits, combined with monthly savings on utility bills, mean that your new HVAC system will quickly pay for itself.

According to real estate experts, one of the best things you can do to increase the value of your home is to install a new, energy efficient HVAC system. Even if you’re not planning on selling any time soon, that investment will still increase your home value years down the road.

If you hesitate every time your power bill comes, it’s time to invest in a new HVAC system. Then you can feel good about seeing how much money you’re saving each month.


About Lanz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing: Founded by HVAC contracting veteran Troy Lanz of Urbana, Illinois, in 2002, Lanz Inc. has grown in number of employees and in services offered to the homeowners and commercial businesses of Champaign County, Il. Lanz Inc. now employs more than 50 highly qualified professionals providing certified installations, repairs and maintenance of heating and cooling systems, heat pumps, air handlers, dehumidifiers, humidifiers, indoor air quality control systems, ductless split systems and geothermal solutions, plus cleaning of drains, vents and air ducts. Ask about our Comfort Club. Please call Lanz Inc. at 1-800-AIR-REPAIR or 217-355-5512 and connect with Lanz Inc. on the web at www.LanzInc.com.

Posted in Latest News

Why Are Commercial Air Conditioning Systems Located on the Roof?

Posted On April 11th, 2017 by Lanz HVAC

Even people who don’t work in commercial buildings know that the majority of businesses have their HVAC systems located on the roof. (At the very least, people have seen action movies with foot chases and shoot-outs on the top of buildings where the characters use rooftop AC cabinets for shelter from opposing gunfire.) But why are the HVAC units for businesses located up there—aside from providing cover for action scenes in movies? There are some interesting reasons, and we’ll look at a few of them in this post.

Commercial HVAC systems need specialized work that goes far beyond the domain of amateurs or even professionals with residential comfort training. To protect your business’ comfort during summer, call on services for commercial air conditioning in Ogden, IL from Lanz Heating & Cooling. We are a trustworthy source for excellent HVAC repairs and maintenance for businesses.

Why you find most commercial ACs on rooftops

The great workhorses of the commercial HVAC world are packaged rooftop units, which combine heating and cooling in one convenient cabinet. Larger businesses will have more than one unit on the roof, working together to provide sufficient cooling in the summer and heating in the winter that will keep employees and customers happy.

In the earliest days of commercial air conditioning, only buildings in major downtown areas were equipped with cooling. The layout of U.S. cities in those days (pre-World War II) pressed commercial buildings close to each other, as we can still see in the older downtown sections of Chicago. There simply was no space to place the large cabinets for air conditioners—except up on the roof. So the rooftop unit started as a basic expediency.

But when U.S. cities began to expand and more commercial buildings moved into the suburbs, the rooftop unit remained as the system of choice. They look more visually appealing removed from the public areas around a building, and permit a better use of floor space. Rooftop units are also more convenient for repair and maintenance technicians to access, and they can do so without disturbing workflow. The tradition that started out of necessity because of the nature of U.S. cities has turned into the ideal way to position HVAC systems.

No matter where the air conditioning system in your business is located, you must have specialists in commercial HVAC take care of the necessary repair work. When you call on Lanz Heating & Cooling to handle your commercial air conditioning in Ogden, IL, you’ll receive top level repair and maintenance work from technicians with excellent training. You can reach us 24 hours a day whenever you need help to keep your business comfortable and your workers, customers, and clients happy. Give us a call today.

Posted in Latest News