air quality

Easy Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality

Breathe Easier by Improving Indoor Air Quality During the Holidays

In homeownership, creating a comfy, healthy space is vital, which means maintaining good indoor air quality. But it’s common for people not to know where to start. Sometimes, they’re unaware it even needs a boost, suffering from less-than-ideal air quality for years before they make a change. Here, readers can get the lowdown on easy ways to enhance their homes’ air quality and improve the health of those in the house.

air filterReplace Dirty Air Filters

EnergyStar suggests checking on air filters monthly and replacing them when they look dirty. But usually, they should be changed at least every three months. But what do they do? They capture dust, pet fur, and other allergens and contaminants from the air, which protects the heating and cooling system but also helps improve the air quality.

Not only does replacing AC or furnace filters as soon as they get dirty improve a home’s air quality, but it also improves the heating and cooling system’s energy efficiency, which can lower energy bills. Replacing clogged filters can also extend the system’s lifespan by preventing problems.

Clean Evaporator Coils

HVAC systems have a component called an evaporator coil, which holds refrigerant and absorbs heat from the home to be transferred outside to help cool the house. However, when they get dirty, they can affect the system’s function and create an uncomfortable indoor environment.

When they get dirty, it can affect the home’s humidity and become a breeding ground for allergens and even mold, all of which can reduce the quality of indoor air. So cleaning evaporator coils once they get dirty is one way to maintain good indoor air quality in the home.

indoor air quality testingSchedule Indoor Air Quality Testing

An indoor air quality assessment is a comprehensive evaluation of the air inside a home or building. It involves measuring the levels of various pollutants such as carbon monoxide, radon, mold, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and particulate matter. The assessment also includes identifying potential sources of poor air quality, such as inadequate ventilation systems, mold growth, and building materials. The results of the assessment can be used to develop strategies for improving indoor air quality, which can lead to a healthier and more comfortable living environment.

Overall, an indoor air quality assessment can provide valuable information about the air and help take necessary measures to improve indoor air quality. So, whether someone is experiencing symptoms related to poor indoor air quality or simply wants to ensure a healthy living space for themselves and their loved ones, getting an indoor air quality assessment is highly recommended. It can also benefit individuals suffering from allergies or respiratory conditions, as it can help identify potential triggers and sources of air pollution that may worsen their symptoms and narrow down what they should do to improve them.

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a family-owned and operated business serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding areas. They offer straightforward pricing, always on-time service, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Call them today for evaporator coil services in Saratoga Springs, NY.

clogged sewer line

Avoid a Scary Plumbing Emergency This Halloween

Don’t Be Haunted by a Potential Plumbing Problem

For homeowners, one of the scariest situations they can encounter is an unexpected plumbing issue. The consequences can be severe, whether they have a clogged drain, a leaking pipe, or a malfunctioning water heater. The effects can be significant- and expensive- from causing an inconvenience to the household to causing water damage. This post will provide tips on how to avoid frightening plumbing problems.

Tips to Prevent Clogs

drain clog One of the most common plumbing issues households may encounter is clogs. Blocked drains and clogged sewer lines can lead to slow-draining sinks, sewage backups, and other problems. Fortunately, these issues can be prevented. Families should avoid putting risky items in the drains and toilets. Some things that should never go down the kitchen sink, even if it has a garbage disposal, are:

  • Cooking oil or grease
  • Eggshells
  • Starchy foods
  • Fruit pits and nuts
  • Coffee grounds

To be safe, plumbers recommend putting all food items in the trash and not down the drain. Household residents should also only flush toilet paper and waste down the toilet. Any other items, including wipes, cotton swabs, cotton balls, and other things, should be thrown in the trash to prevent sewer line clogs. 

Scheduling regular drain and cleaning services can also help homeowners avoid blockages in their drain and sewer lines. During these appointments, plumbers remove residue and other buildups to keep wastewater in the pipes flowing properly. Hydro jetting is often used for preventing clogs, as it can clean the entire pipe using water shot out of a nozzle at high pressure. 

Schedule Plumbing Maintenance 

Plumbers recommend that homeowners schedule routine plumbing maintenance to keep their plumbing system working correctly, prevent problems, and extend the life of the plumbing. In most cases, plumbing maintenance services should be performed once a year. Some tasks plumbers can perform during a maintenance visit include checking the water pressure, water shutoff valves, and plumbing fixtures. 

Scheduling a plumbing maintenance appointment allows plumbers to check the plumbing system and identify issues that need to be repaired before the problem gets bigger and causes more significant problems for the household. For example, they can adjust the water pressure if it’s too high to avoid the pressure leading to cracked or burst pipes and water damage. 

The Water Heater Needs Maintenance Too

water heater Routine water heater maintenance, typically at least once a year, also has many benefits, such as preventing problems with the water heater, working more efficiently, saving on energy bills, and extending the water heater’s life. Some water heater maintenance tasks are:

  • Checking for problems: If any issues like corrosion or leaks are detected, the plumber must repair them before they lead to larger problems.
  • Drain and flush the tank: This will remove sediment or residue from the tank, allowing the water heater to operate better and more efficiently. 
  • Examine the pressure relief valve: The plumber will ensure the safety feature works correctly to prevent problems. 
  • Inspect the anode rod: This prevents corrosion inside the tank. Plumbers will check the condition of the anode rod and replace it if needed.  

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating has more than ten years of expertise serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding areas. They offer straightforward prices, on-time service, and the latest technology. Call them today for plumbing services in Saratoga Springs, NY

Signs It May Be Time to Replace the Thermostat

Signs You May Need to Replace the Thermostat

A thermostat malfunction can prevent a home’s air conditioner or heater from working correctly. The HVAC system may not know when to turn on or off, running continuously, raising energy costs and increasing wear and tear on the system, or they might not heat or cool the house to the desired temperature. 

To prevent these problems and keep the heating and air conditioning working, homeowners should call a professional for a thermostat replacement if they notice signs of a faulty thermostat. Some signs property owners should watch for that can indicate they need to install a new device include increased energy bills, incorrect temperature readings, and if the unit is short cycling.

Spike in Energy Bills

billA high energy bill is one of the first signs homeowners might notice indicating they could have a broken thermostat. If there’s a sudden increase in energy bills or they keep getting higher each month, the HVAC system may be overworking due to a malfunctioning thermostat, which results in more energy being used.

Some problems with a thermostat that can waste energy and money are:

  • Not correctly reading the temperature in a home or failing to communicate with the HVAC system that it needs to turn on or off 
  • Getting stuck in the “on” position, leaving the air conditioner or heating running continuously
  • Taking too long to respond to temperature fluctuations in a house, causing family members to adjust the thermostat
  • Failing to follow the programmed settings on a smart thermostat which causes the HVAC system to run when it’s not supposed to

Wrong Temperature Readings

temperatureIf thermostats start to show incorrect temperature readings, it can be another symptom of a broken thermostat. Homeowners can check the accuracy of the temperature on the thermostat using an indoor thermometer

Some issues family members might notice that can alert them that the thermostat may be reading the wrong temperature include:

  • Differences between the reading on the thermostat and the actual temperature in the house
  • Drastic temperature changes in a house
  • Failure to heat or cool the home to the temperature setting on the thermostat or the house feels like it doesn’t match the desired temperature.
  • Errors are shown on the thermostat screen or malfunctioning buttons
  • If the HVAC system is running too long or short-cycling, turning on and off too quickly 

Short Cycling

Another issue homeowners should be aware of that can indicate a malfunctioning thermostat is if the air conditioner or heater starts to short cycle. Short cycling is when an HVAC system turns on and off quickly and doesn’t run for its normal heating or cooling cycle length. 

Some thermostat issues that can cause the heater or air conditioner to short cycle are:

  • A problem with the sensors that is preventing the thermostat from detecting the right temperature
  • A wiring issue that is causing a poor connection between the thermostat and the system
  • A buildup of dirt, dust, or debris inside the thermostat can interfere with its ability to function correctly 

If homeowners notice any signs of a faulty thermostat, they should contact an HVAC contractor to inspect it and determine if thermostat replacement or repair is needed. 

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a family-owned and operated business serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding areas since 2011. They offer straightforward pricing, on-time service, and a satisfaction guarantee. Call them today for smart thermostat repair and installation services in Saratoga Springs, NY

Plumbing 101: What Homeowners Need to Know

What to Know About Your Home’s Plumbing

Homeowners don’t need to know much about their home’s systems since they can hire experts to perform repairs. However, they need to have some knowledge of their plumbing system. By knowing some basics about how their plumbing system works, homeowners can help their households avoid significant water damage, water costs, and other consequences of a plumbing emergency. This blog can help homeowners learn how to spot the signs of a plumbing problem, understand the importance of maintenance, and how to save money with plumbing fixture replacements. 

Plumbing Fixtures

tubPlumbing fixtures can be problematic for homeowners. Older faucets, shower heads, toilets, and water heaters can be inefficient and malfunction or experience leaks. This can result in excessive water use, higher utility bills, and other issues. However, homeowners can save on their utility bills by replacing old fixtures with new, efficient ones. 

Here are examples of plumbing fixture installations that can save money:

  • Water-Saving Toilets: There are many types of water-saving toilets, such as dual-flush toilets, which can save homeowners a significant amount of water.
  • Water-Saving Showerheads: Low-flow showerheads can provide households adequate water pressure while using less water.
  • Low-Flow Faucets: Plumbers recommend installing water-saving faucets to reduce water bills. Aerators can also reduce water flow from the taps.
  • Tankless Water Heater: Tankless water heaters only heat water when needed, conserving energy and saving money. 

Common Signs of Plumbing Problems

billOne of the biggest lessons homeowners need to learn about plumbing is how to identify the signs of a problem with their plumbing system. Failing to identify an issue soon enough can result in major water damage to a house and wasted money. 

To avoid this, professionals recommend calling a plumber if homeowners notice the following symptoms:

  • Low water pressure: This can be due to leaks, clogs, or other issues that need to be diagnosed by a plumber.
  • Odd sounds: Sounds coming from the piping, water heater, or other part of the system can indicate a plumbing issue that needs to be inspected by an expert.
  • Foul odors: Bad smells coming from pipes or drains can indicate an issue like a clog or backup. 
  • Slow drains: If sinks or showers start draining slowly, it can indicate a clog or blockage in the pipe below or sewer line.
  • High water bills: An unexplained spike in water costs most likely indicates a leak in the plumbing system.

Plumbing Maintenance

An essential task homeowners need to do each year for their plumbing system is scheduling routine maintenance. These services are crucial in identifying problems with a plumbing system early before the issue worsens and causes more problems. Additionally, routine plumbing maintenance helps the plumbing last longer, prevents problems, and can save homeowners money.

Plumbers will complete numerous tasks during plumbing maintenance services, including the following:

  • Examine pipes for leaks or corrosion
  • Look for water damage or signs of mold or mildew
  • Inspect the toilets, faucets, shower heads, bathtubs, and sinks for issues
  • Run tests to determine if there are blockages or water pressure problems in the piping system
  • Remove buildup of pipes with drain cleaning services
  • Inspect the water heater, flush its tank, and replace its anode rod when needed

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a local family-owned and operated company serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding areas since 2011. They offer straightforward prices, on-time service, and the latest technology and techniques. Call them today for plumbing services in Saratoga Springs, NY.

What Does Refrigerant Do?

Why Is Refrigerant Vital to Air Conditioners?

Refrigerant is critical to the performance of an air conditioner. But while it’s an essential substance in a system, many homeowners do not know what it does. This vital substance is in the coils of an air conditioner. It absorbs the heat to help cool the air.  The AC unit needs the right amount of a specific refrigerant or coolant to properly cool the house to the desired temperature. 

This blog post will answer commonly asked questions homeowners have about refrigerants, including what type is needed for their system, what symptoms of a leak to watch for, and when they need to call a professional for leak repairs

Which Refrigerant Does the AC Use?

When HVAC technicians inspect air conditioners for a refrigerant leak, they often share with homeowners the type of refrigerant needed for an AC system. This is essential to know because refrigerant is not interchangeable. Putting the wrong refrigerant in a system will cause damage.

To locate the type of refrigerant needed for an AC, homeowners can also check the owner’s manual that came with the system or look on the outside of the outdoor AC unit for a label that will list the type of refrigerant required. If a home’s air conditioning system was built before 2010, it may use R-22 or freon. This type of refrigerant is banned from use in new air conditioner models because it can harm the environment. 

What Causes Refrigerant Leaks?

leakIf homeowners discover their air conditioner is not cooling their house to the desired temperature on the thermostat, it could be due to several factors, including a refrigerant leak. 

There are many possible causes of refrigerant leaks, including: 

  • Age and corrosion: Systems can corrode and rust over time, causing holes to form in the tubing and leading to refrigerant leaks.
  • Damaged components: Poor installation or mishandling of the unit can cause damage to the coils, valves, and other components, leading to leaks.
  • Poor maintenance: Failing to have AC units inspected and maintained regularly can lead to leaks forming, as professionals cannot clean the evaporator coil and look for signs of a refrigerant leak early enough to repair it before the problem worsens. 

When Is It Time to Call For Refrigerant Leak Repair?

proIt’s essential for homeowners to call in HVAC professionals to repair their air conditioner’s refrigerant leak at the first signs of a leak. They can use refrigerant leak detectors to spot a leak and then fix it to restore comfort to a house quickly. One of the most obvious signs of insufficient refrigerant in an AC system due to a leak is if the house is not cooling to the temperature on the thermostat. Another sign to watch for is if the AC runs continuously. 

Homeowners should also listen for hissing or gurgling sounds. These can indicate a small hole in the tubing that the refrigerant is leaking through. Another sign to watch for is ice on the refrigerant line and frozen AC coils. This can happen if the refrigerant levels are too low because of a leak. 

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a family-owned and operated company that has been serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding communities since 2011. They provide honest, straightforward prices, on-time service, and the latest technology. Call them today for refrigerant leak repair services in Saratoga Springs, NY

Get Rid of Poor Shower Water Pressure

Causes of Low Water Pressure in the Shower

There’s a reason hotels often list good water pressure in the shower as an amenity. People want water pressure that’s high enough to work out sore muscles and let them relax while they shower. If a homeowner expects to have normal water pressure in their home’s shower and then finds it has suddenly dropped, it’s essential to get to the bottom of the cause of the low shower water pressure. This blog post will share some of the most common causes of low water pressure in the shower.

Water Heater 

water heaterWhen a home’s water pressure drops, one place plumbers will check is the hot water heater to see if it’s causing the problem. If the water pressure issues occur only with the hot water, this is likely the cause. Three common problems with water heaters that can impact the water pressure are sediment buildup, clogs, and problems with the valves.

If the water pressure has decreased over time, it may be from a buildup of minerals in the tank. This sediment can take up space in the tank, leaving less space for water storage. To resolve this issue, plumbers will drain and flush the tank to remove the debris. If the water pressure suddenly drops, it can be due to the shut-off valve being closed or partially closed. This issue can be corrected easily, and proper water flow should be restored. Another problem plumbers will check for is a clog in the pipes connected to the water heater. This blockage can restrict water flow and cause low pressure in the shower. 


Low water pressure in the shower may also indicate a leak in the water line. Upon arriving at a house, the plumber might start their inspection by asking the homeowners questions to see if there is evidence of plumbing leaks. If the low water pressure occurs with multiple plumbing fixtures, this is a likely cause.

After talking to the homeowners, plumbers will then perform leak detection. They have various tools to check for leaks, including video cameras, infrared leak detectors, and ultrasonic leak detectors. These devices allow plumbers to quickly and non-invasively check the water lines for cracks and leaks that could be causing water pressure problems. 


showerIf the low water pressure is limited to the shower alone and with both hot and cold water, the showerhead is likely the cause. Plumbers and homeowners may start by looking for buildup on the showerhead that can clog the tiny holes and restrict the water flow. The minerals and sediment that can cause issues for the water heater without proper maintenance can also get stuck in the showerhead.  

If it is a newer showerhead, plumbers may also check the installation to ensure it was installed correctly. Clogged showerheads can be cleaned by soaking them in vinegar, but if the showerhead is already old, it may be time to replace it altogether. Installing new showerheads can be beneficial as many new low-flow showerheads save water without sacrificing good water pressure. 

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a local family-owned and operated business serving Saratoga Springs, NY, and the surrounding areas. They provide straightforward pricing, on-time service, and high-quality service and expertise. Call them today for plumbing services in Saratoga Springs, NY

Add the Air Conditioner’s Coils to the Spring Cleaning List

Cleaning Dirty Coils Can Improve an Air Conditioner’s Performance

Adding air conditioner maintenance and AC coil cleaning is essential for a spring cleaning list. Before the summer heat and humidity arrives, homeowners want to ensure their system is operating correctly to keep their house cool and comfortable. If the AC coils are dirty, it can cause the air conditioner to run inefficiently and lead to issues with the system. This post will discuss the importance of cleaning the condenser and evaporator coils

Evaporator Coils

evaporator coilsEvaporator coils play an essential role in cooling a home. They are designed to absorb heat from the indoor air using a refrigerant. An evaporator coil must be properly sized, installed, and maintained to operate correctly and efficiently. Regular maintenance and cleaning are vital for keeping an evaporator coil running efficiently and preventing costly repairs. 

Dirty evaporator coils can negatively impact the performance of an air conditioning unit. This is because they reduce the heat that can be transferred, making it difficult for an AC to cool the home. Additionally, dirty evaporator coils will cause inefficiency, which leads to higher energy bills and is more likely to cause a breakdown. Neglected evaporator coils can also lead to a system malfunction and decreased airflow, leaving some areas of the home without adequate cooling.

Condenser Coils

condenser coilsA condenser coil is another critical component of an air conditioner that helps to cool the air in a home. It releases the heat absorbed by the evaporator coil outside and then cycles the refrigerant back to the evaporator coil to continue the cooling cycle. It’s essential to keep an eye on the condition of the condenser coil and clean it routinely so it can continue to function properly.

The condenser coil is located in the unit outdoors, so if leaves, dirt, branches, or other debris get on the coils, it can cause them to work harder to keep a house cool. A dirty condenser coil can cause several issues. These include reduced cooling power, higher energy bills, and potentially even mechanical damage to the unit if not addressed quickly. As such, it is vital to ensure that the condenser coil stays clean so that homeowners can enjoy efficient and cost-effective cooling.

Coil Cleaning and Maintenance

It’s important to have the coils inspected and cleaned by an AC contractor at least once a year to ensure they are clean and working well, allowing the air conditioner to work correctly. Technicians will ensure the coils are functioning correctly, look for signs of damage, and clean them. 

To clean the coils, technicians will remove dirt and debris with water, a chemical cleaner, a brush, or a combination of these. Next, they will straighten any bent coil fins to prevent blocked airflow with a special fin comb called a coil fin straightener. Before they leave, they will close the panel and turn the air conditioner back on. 

These coil maintenance and cleaning services are relatively quick and can be performed during an annual AC tune-up. Keeping the condenser and evaporator coils clean is essential to ensure optimal air conditioning performance and efficiency and prevent malfunctions with the AC system.

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a family-owned and operated company serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding areas. They provide straightforward pricing, on-time service, and a satisfaction guarantee. Call them today for AC maintenance or evaporator coil services in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Three of the Most Likely Causes of a Leaky Faucet

Fix Leaks as Soon as Possible

A leaking or dripping faucet may not sound like an emergency to most people. Some may consider a leaky sink faucet more of a minor annoyance than an issue that needs to be resolved quickly. However, it should be taken seriously and fixed immediately. A leaky faucet wastes precious water resources, can cause water damage, and can make a big dent in the household budget by causing a spike in water bills. This blog post will discuss three of the most common causes of a dripping or leaking tap.

Worn Out O-Ring

O-ring inside a faucetAn O-ring is a rubber gasket in a circular shape, which is placed between two surfaces to create a watertight seal. Over time, O-rings can become worn out due to age, temperature changes, and chemical exposure. As an O-ring wears out, it becomes brittle and can no longer form a tight seal against the two surfaces, leading to dripping near the handle of a fixture as water escapes through the worn-out O-ring.

Many different types of O-rings are available, so choosing one compatible with the fixture in question is essential. Installing the incorrect kind of O-ring in the fixture can lead to premature wear and tear, resulting in frequent dripping near the handle, more water waste, and high water costs.

Worn Out or Corroded Washer

A washer is another important plumbing part that helps create a watertight seal between two portions of pipes. It is a flat disc with a hole in the middle for a bolt to pass through. A worn-out or corroded washer can lead to leaking at the spout of a faucet because it can no longer create a watertight seal.

Washers can become worn out or corroded for various reasons, such as age. Extended exposure to harsh elements, such as chemicals and moisture, can also break down the material and cause it to become worn out or corroded. In addition, washers are typically made of metal, a relatively soft material that can easily be scratched or dented if not correctly cared for. They are subject to friction caused by tightening nuts and bolts, causing them to wear down over time.

Corrosion of the Valve Seat

corroded valve seatA valve seat is another round seal that helps prevent liquids from flowing through the spout when the valve is closed. When these seats become corroded, they can no longer provide a tight seal and allow liquids to pass through. This corrosion can occur due to environmental factors such as humidity or when water or other fluids come into contact with metal surfaces, causing them to react and break down over time, resulting in leaking or dripping at the tap’s spout.

In order to prevent leaking faucets from occurring, regular maintenance of valves and pipes should be performed to ensure that corrosion is addressed and stopped as quickly as possible. In addition, proper installation of valve seats can also help prevent corrosion and subsequent leakage.

About Saratoga Plumbing & Heating

Saratoga Plumbing & Heating is a family-owned and operated business serving Saratoga Springs and the surrounding areas since 2011. They provide straightforward pricing, on-time service, and a satisfaction guarantee. Call them today for faucet repair or replacement in Saratoga Springs, NY.