WPadm3892891, Author at TF Complete

This simple yearly ritual can add years to your hot water equipment.

water heaters Bristol county, ma If you’ve ever had your tanker heater fail on you, you know it’s a horrible inconvenience. Your family must get by without warm showers or hot water to wash clothes, hands and dishes, and the pain doesn’t end until your new water heater installation is complete.

TF Complete Heating & Cooling addresses hot water issues year-round in Bristol, Middlesex, Norfolk and nearby counties. We always tell our customers that the best thing they can do to prevent water heater breakdowns is to flush their system yearly.

Why Flushing a Water Heater is Important

The number one cause of water heater failures is internal corrosion. Corrosive particles in your water eat away at the tank and eventually make it leak. (An anode rod in water heaters will slow this process but can’t prevent it altogether.)

Flushing your water heater annually will lower the concentration of these particles. That reduces internal corrosion and adds time to your equipment’s lifespan.
It will also help improve the quality of water coming from your tap, help maintain system efficiency and lower noise from the tank.

Flushing a Traditional Water Heater

The process of flushing a traditional water heater — one with a tank — is pretty simple and requires only a garden hose and maybe a towel.

Here’s how you do it. (These are general instructions; please consult your owner’s manual for the specific steps of your model.)

  1. Turn your water heater’s burner to off or pilot.
  2. Close the water supply valve, typically at the top of the tank.
  3. Attach your garden hose to the drain valve at the bottom of the tank and run it outside or to a floor drain or slop sink.
  4. Turn on a hot water tap in your home or open the water heater’s pressure relief valve to prevent a vacuum from forming inside the tank.
  5. Open the drain valve and let the tank drain completely. (Be careful — the water coming out is very hot.)
  6. While the water drains, run some of it from the hose to a bucket or large cup. This will give you a sense of how much sediment is coming out.
  7. After the tank is empty, open the water supply valve to cycle more water through and clear more sediment.
  8. Once the water from the hose is clear, close the drain valve. Also, turn off the hot water tap and/or shut the pressure relief valve. Refill the tank.
  9. Once the tank is full, return your burners to their standard setting.

Flushing a Tankless Water Heater

One of the reasons that tankless water heaters last longer than traditional water heaters is that they have less exposure to corrosive elements in water. Even so, you should still flush them regularly. The process generally involves attaching hoses to the unit and running a mild vinegar solution through it. Your manual can provide exact instructions.

TF Complete Heating & Cooling keeps water heaters running.

Whether you need standard water heater maintenance or a repair for a struggling unit, the Tom Fricker team can help. Our expert technicians have extensive experience with traditional and tankless systems. We can even help with flushing and cleaning your equipment.

We’re here to ensure your Complete satisfaction. Contact us for service today.

Get the most efficient heating and cooling from your HVAC equipment.

thermostat settings  Medfield, ma Twelve-month home comfort isn’t accomplished with one piece of equipment. You can keep your home warm with a boiler, furnace or heat pump and cool with central A/C or ductless mini-splits. As you might imagine, there are plenty of system combinations and lots of additional hardware (plumbing, ductwork, electrical circuitry) that supports them.

At TF Complete Heating & Cooling, we pride ourselves on having the training, experience and adaptability to ensure efficient year-round comfort for families in Worcester and Middlesex counties. One product that has an outsized effect on your energy bills is one you might not be thinking of: your thermostat.

With careful thermostat settings, you can considerably lower your energy expenses without sacrificing an iota of comfort. Here are some tips to help.

Thermostat Settings for Warmer Months

Customers frequently ask us if there is an ideal thermostat temperature for hot days. We’ve found that 78 degrees Fahrenheit typically balances comfort and energy efficiency. This may seem a little high to you, and if the house feels too warm, you can adjust a degree or two. It’s also a good idea to run ceiling fans in your home. Moving the air around can make rooms feel cooler, even if the thermostat is higher.

Thermostat Settings of Colder Months

For late fall and winter, you can minimize the fuel your boiler or furnace uses by setting your heat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit while you’re awake. This setting prevents your heating system from cycling too often and lowers your winter energy costs.

Year-Round Thermostat Tips

The U.S. Department of Energy advises that turning your thermostat back 7 to 10 degrees from its standard setting for 8 hours a day can save you up to 10 percent on annual heating and cooling expenses . Here are some tips to enjoy these year-round energy savings:

  1. Install a programmable thermostat to schedule these temperature changes when you’re asleep or out of the house. You could go a step further and invest in a smart thermostat that makes temperature adjustments when you aren’t around.
  2. Avoid touching the thermostat outside of these pre-scheduled adjustments. Constantly raising and lowering the temperature will make your heating equipment work harder and increase your fuel consumption.
  3. For the most accurate thermostat settings, place your thermostat on an interior wall near the center of your home in a room people often use.
  4. Use the sun to your advantage. Keep your blinds closed during the day in the summer to prevent sunlight from heating up your home. During the winter, let the sunshine in!

Tom Fricker Can Lower Your Energy Bills.

Home heating and cooling can account for over half of your home’s energy use. With TF Complete Heating & Cooling as your HVAC partner, we can ensure you stay comfortable for less. Our licensed technicians can service your HVAC equipment so that it runs for less money. And when you enroll in one of our service plans , your annual maintenance visit is free!

Contact us if you want to explore more ways to lower your heating and cooling bills.

A clean filter makes a huge difference in efficiency and healthier indoor air.

furnace air filter Medway, ma While we’re still a few days from the official start of fall, pumpkin-flavored coffees and beers are already in people’s hands. The NFL season is kicking off. It won’t be too long before we start experiencing chilly afternoons in Bristol, Middlesex and Norfolk counties.

Is your furnace ready to start heating your home? If you haven’t thought about your forced-air heating system since shutting it down last spring, there’s a decent chance you haven’t checked its air filter recently. Checking and changing air filters is a relatively simple process, but it makes a huge difference in your home.

Why are air filters important?

To start, air filters are the first line of defense against airborne toxins that can lower your indoor air quality. If people in your household deal with asthma, severe allergies or other respiratory issues, poor air quality can exacerbate their symptoms. It can also make rooms much less comfortable.

Clean air filters improve airflow in your home’s HVAC systems. This will ensure energy efficiency and lower your energy bills. Plus, preventing debris from entering your furnace reduces its wear and tear, saving you money on service and repairs!

How often should you check and change your filter?

During the peak heating and cooling seasons, you should check your furnace’s air filters each month. If the filter is located on the side of your furnace, you can lift it out. If it’s behind a return-air vent, you may need to unscrew it.

You should change the filter if it’s dirty or clogged with dust and debris. Proactive homeowners in our part of the country often change their filters with each change in the seasons.

Are furnace filters used during summer?

The air filter in your home’s furnace sees a lot of use in the warmer months. Even though your home’s forced-air heating wasn’t on this summer, your central air conditioning was cycling cooled air through the same ductwork. A clean filter keeps dust, mold, pollen and other pollutants from cycling through your ducts.

Trust Tom Fricker for your furnace maintenance.

Air filters are one of many vital components for ensuring your HVAC system’s health, but you should still service your furnace regularly. The most trusted company for dependable furnace maintenance in our area is TF Complete Heating & Cooling. Our licensed technicians can safeguard your system’s total health, keeping your home comfortable for less.

The best way to guarantee that your furnace receives regular maintenance is with a Complete Heating Plan from Tom Fricker. Each service plan comes with a complimentary annual maintenance visit. Our team will inspect, clean, lubricate and test your furnace. We’ll catch lingering issues to prevent future breakdowns and ensure maximum efficiency from your home’s heating. These plans also come with priority emergency service and discounts on repairs and diagnostic fees. We guarantee you’ll be Completely satisfied!

Reach out to TF Complete Heating & Cooling to enroll in a service plan or schedule your annual maintenance visit.

How quickly can you generate hot water — and how much it will cost?

water heater service Norfolk, ma The average U.S. household uses almost one-fifth of its energy heating water. That’s not especially shocking when you consider that the average American family consumes roughly 65 gallons of hot water each day.

It only stands to reason that you’d want the most efficient water heater available to keep your hot water expenses down. Luckily, there’s a convenient rating system to measure efficiency in traditional and tankless water heaters.

What are UEF ratings?

The rating for a water heater’s energy efficiency is called uniform energy factor, or UEF. This metric tells how much energy your water heater uses to power itself and heat water. This is a relatively new rating system. It went into place in 2017 and replaced a less precise metric called High Efficiency ratings.

The higher the UEF rating for your water heater, the more efficient it is. For example, ENERGY STAR certifications for gas-fired storage water heaters require a UEF of 0.81 or 0.86, depending on the product. Tankless gas water heaters need a UEF of 0.95 for ENERGY STAR certification.

How is UEF calculated?

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) assigns a water heating product a category based on its intended use. Within this category, the unit’s performance in generating hot water is evaluated. If your water heater was manufactured after 2017, look for a yellow label on it that will contain information related to its efficiency evaluation. This information includes:

The label will also tell you your unit’s usage category (or BIN) and its capacity. If you look up the model number of your water heater, you can find its UEF.

Tom Fricker can upgrade your home’s water heater!

How old is the water heater in your home? If it’s over a decade old, you should probably consider replacing it, and TF Complete Heating & Cooling can help you choose an efficient water heater replacement that provides longer showers and smaller energy bills.

We install high-efficiency tankless water heaters that generate virtually unlimited hot water on demand and save you money by preventing the standby losses created by constantly reheating a storage tank of water. Tankless systems also have longer service lives than traditional water heaters.

And if that’s not reason enough to want to upgrade, you may be eligible for generous rebates from Mass Save. Our team will help you qualify!

In Bristol, Middlesex and Norfolk counties, TF Complete Heating & Cooling is the most trusted home comfort partner. Reach out to us for a free estimate on new equipment.

Prevent breakdowns, extend your system’s lifespan, and save money!

central air Wrentham, ma At TF Complete Heating & Cooling, we provide air conditioning maintenance for cooling systems of all shapes and sizes. Whether you have a whole-home central A/C system or a series of state-of-the-art ductless mini-splits, our experienced HVAC team can provide the vital maintenance to keep them running at peak performance.

“Hang on a second,” you might be saying. “When was the last time I had my A/C serviced?”

We get it. Life gets busy, and it can be easy to neglect routine HVAC maintenance. But the Tom Fricker team is always here to help families from Bristol, Middlesex and Norfolk counties get back on track.

How often should you service your A/C equipment?

As a general rule, you should arrange annual A/C maintenance once a year. We often recommend you do it in cooler months when you aren’t using your A/C. However, if it’s been a while since your cooling equipment received service, don’t wait until the fall. Contact us now.

Bear in mind that some manufacturers of heat pump systems, which provide both heating and cooling, recommend twice-yearly service. You can reach out to TF Complete Heating & Cooling, and we’ll tell you how often your specific system needs attention.

Why is regular maintenance important for A/C systems?

An annual service visit is a relatively low-cost way to get the most out of your cooling equipment. It also pays for itself in higher efficiency. Our Precision Cooling Annual Maintenance involves cleaning, testing, lubrication, and inspection. This will help your A/C keep you comfortable while using less electricity.

This service also ensures the longest possible service life for your equipment and lowers the rate of system repairs.

What else can you do to keep your A/C running efficiently?

In addition to arranging annual maintenance for your cooling system, there are some simple steps you can take to help the efficiency of your A/C equipment.

  1. Check your air filters each month in the summer and clean or replace them if they’re dirty. Clogged filters restrict airflow, making your A/C equipment run longer to keep you reliably cool. Staying on top of your filters is an easy, inexpensive way to lower cooling costs.
  2. Keep your outdoor equipment clear of trash and plant life. Whether you have a central air system or ductless equipment, you’ll have at least one outdoor unit. When weeds, grass or sundry debris clog it, your system’s efficiency suffers. Clear away at least two feet of space around the unit.
  3. Get protected with a Tom Fricker Complete Cooling Plan. Our affordable service plans not only protect you with priority service and reduced costs on repairs; they also ensure you receive a free maintenance visit each year. You will be Completely satisfied with your A/C performance all summer.

It isn’t too late to schedule your annual cooling maintenance. Just reach out to TF Complete Heating & Cooling to request service.

Avoid common mistakes with these heating & cooling systems.

heat pumps Franklin, ma Every year, we help families in Bristol, Middlesex and Norfolk counties get set up with the all-in-one heating and cooling provided by heat pumps. These systems work differently than conventional heating and cooling equipment because they don’t generate hot or cold air. Instead, they transfer heat between the inside and outside of your home.

As such, many customers ask us how long a heat pump should run in a day. As the region’s heat pump experts, we’re happy to help!

How does a heat pump run throughout the day?

Just like with a furnace or air conditioning system, a heat pump will continue to cycle until it has either heated or cooled your home to a desired temperature. Typically, a heat pump will run for 10 to 20 minutes, then shut down for a short period with about two or three cycles per hour. However, a heat pump may cycle more frequently during periods of extreme cold or extreme heat.

(This is one of the reasons that some TF Complete Heating & Cooling customers retain a boiler or furnace as a backup heating source for the coldest weeks of the year.)

If your system is cycling all the time, though, it could be time for a heat pump repair visit.

Common heat pump operation mistakes

There are some mistakes that homeowners typically make that may lead to too much cycling from a heat pump and unnecessarily high electric bills. These mistakes include the following:

  1. Not having the right-sized system. If you don’t work with an experienced company on your heat pump installation , you might have a unit intended for a smaller space. This equipment will need to cycle more often to cool your home.
  2. Leaving a heat pump on “auto.” Doing this can cause your heat pump to toggle between heating and cooling modes. It’s better to set a temperature for your room and adjust it as needed.
  3. Changing the temperature constantly. The most efficient way for a heat pump to work is to have a set temperature. Fiddling with a room’s temperature multiple times a day will lead to unnecessary cycling.
  4. Neglecting heat pump maintenance. As with all heating and cooling equipment, heat pumps require regular service to control your home’s temperatures efficiently. The expert HVAC team at Tom Fricker can ensure that your system runs efficiently. We’ll fix issues that lead to frequent cycling and eventual breakdowns.

Trust TF Complete Heating & Cooling for your heat pump needs.

We want to be your full-service heat pump partner, from installation all the way through the life of your system. TF Complete Heating & Cooling is a certified Bryant Factory Authorized Dealer. We know these industry-leading products inside and out. We can also help you save serious money with Mass Save® rebates and incentives, plus generous federal tax credits through the Inflation Reduction Act.

We also offer comprehensive protection for heat pumps with our Complete Heating and Cooling service plans. This coverage includes complimentary annual maintenance, priority emergency service and discounts on repairs.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to TF Complete Heating & Cooling if you need service for your heat pump system.

Time to schedule your annual heating maintenance.

boiler service Middlesex county, ma Boilers provide some of the highest-quality heating possible. Using radiators or radiant floor systems, the heat a boiler generates of slightly humid, which makes your rooms feel warmer and more comfortable. And since a boiler system doesn’t blow air through ductwork, it limits the circulation of toxins that can lower your indoor air quality.

Still, boiler systems are complicated, and they require regular maintenance from a trained and experienced technician to keep them running at their best. In Bristol, Middlesex, Norfolk and nearby counties, the team at Tom Fricker provides top-notch boiler maintenance. We recommend homeowners arrange heating system service once a year, and the summer is an excellent time to have this done.

Summer Boiler Maintenance

The are several compelling reasons to arrange your annual boiler maintenance in the summer:

  1. You aren’t using your heating system, so shutting it down for service won’t affect your comfort.
  2. We have better availability for routine service in the summer because our technicians aren’t handling constant no-heat emergency calls. You can get a more convenient time.
  3. The service we perform doesn’t “wear off.” So, taking care of your annual maintenance now gets you way ahead of the game. It’s like buying holiday presents in July!

Why is regular maintenance so important for your boiler?

Would you drive your car for a year without checking the oil or having a mechanic look at it occasionally? Of course not. The same is true for your heating system. The risks of not having yearly maintenance are significant, and the benefits of getting service are considerable.

TF Complete Heating and Cooling service plans protect your boiler.

One of the best ways to ensure that your boiler always gets the attention it needs is by protecting it with a Complete Heating Plan. Our service plan coverage includes a complimentary annual heating maintenance. You also receive priority emergency service and a 15 percent discount on repairs or diagnostic fees. And with this coverage in place, you will enjoy Complete peace of mind.

Enroll in a heating service plan by contacting the Tom Fricker team today.

An efficient, long-term air conditioning solution that doesn’t require ductwork.

ductless ac Worcester county, ma When it comes to cooling the spaces in your home, are you relying on cumbersome, inefficient window air conditioners?

Window A/C units are a far-from-ideal home cooling option. Consider these common issues:

In short, when you use window units as your primary cooling option, you’ll spend more money for less comfort. That’s why more homes in Bristol, Middlesex and Norfolk counties are turning to the Tom Fricker team for ductless mini-split installation.

What is a ductless mini-split?

Mini-split systems are a cost-effective alternative to window units. They cool your home by transferring heat from inside to outside. There are two components to a ductless mini-split system. An outdoor compressor connects to an indoor air handler via a thin tube through your walls. Multiple air handlers connect to one condenser.

Air handlers in each room draw in warm air and deliver the heat to the condenser, where it is expelled into the ambient air. Then, cooled air gets released back to your room via the same air handler. These systems can also provide supplemental heat in cooler months by reversing this process.

What kinds of homes use ductless mini-splits?

Central A/C systems gained popularity in U.S. homes about 70 years ago. So, older homes often don’t have ductwork for forced air heating and cooling. If your home relies on a boiler and radiators for heat, you might not have ducts, and a mini-split system is an excellent A/C option.

Even if you have central A/C in your home, a single ductless minis-split provides excellent cooling for garages, guest houses, work studios and rooms that may not have vents.

What are the benefits of a ductless mini-split system?

Here are some of the advantages of ductless mini-splits:

The TF Complete Heating & Cooling team knows ductless mini-splits!

We are mini-split experts, ready to get your home the ductless A/C equipment you need to stay comfortable all summer long. The Tom Fricker team can also help you qualify for significant savings through Mass Save and federal tax credits. Depending on the ductless system you install, you could receive thousands in savings.

Connect with TF Complete Heating & Cooling today for a free estimate on ductless mini-splits.

Make sure your hot water stays on with these helpful maintenance tips.

water heater service Bristol county, ma We lead busy lives, and for many working people (especially those with kids), a hot shower can be just about the only escape from daily mayhem. If your hot water suddenly goes out because of a struggling or failed water heater, that escape goes right out the window.

The average storage tank water heater can last between 10 and 15 years. The most common cause of failure for these units is corrosion. If your hot water system has been getting along in years, you might find that your hot water isn’t lasting as long as it used to — and your energy bills are going up.

The Tom Fricker appliance team has helped many households in Bristol, Worcester, Middlesex and Norfolk counties choose the most efficient water heater and keep it running for as long as possible. Here are three tips for ensuring your water heater does its job.

1. Flush your water heater each year.

Corrosive particles in your water can damage the tank of a traditional water heater. Manufacturers put an anode rod in the tank to attract these particles away from the tank’s lining, but over time it erodes. You can slow the process by flushing your tank of sediment annually.

Flushing your water heater is a relatively simple process. Your owner’s manual will offer the step-by-step process for your unit. Generally speaking, you turn off the burner and run a hose from the drain valve to a utility sink, floor drain or outside. You drain the tank of water, then flush the tank with cold water until you’ve purged as much sediment as possible.

2. Schedule regular maintenance for your water heater.

Like your home’s heating and cooling systems, your water heater can benefit from regular tune-ups. After all, the average American household expends about 20 percent of its energy on hot water generation.

If you aren’t comfortable flushing your tank, scheduling annual water heater maintenance is a good idea. Even if you’re flushing your tank each year, we should get in contact with us to see how often you should get water heater service to ensure it’s working at peak efficiency.

3. Be proactive with a struggling water heater.

There are several tell-tale signs that your water heater is reaching the end of its service life. These include:

Don’t wait for your water heater to fail before contacting the pros at TF Complete Heating & Cooling. If you do, we’ll likely have to rush to secure your equipment and get your hot water back on.

If you allow more time to choose a water heater replacement, you’ll have more options, including upgrading to a high-efficiency indirect-fired or on-demand tankless water heater.

Our friendly, skilled technicians are available to inspect and service your water heater or discuss your options for a replacement. Contact us today to get started.

6 warning signs your home’s central A/C might be past its prime

ac not cooling Medfield, ma How long do you think the average central air conditioning system lasts? We’ve found it to be around 15 years, but most manufacturers’ warranties only last 10 years. At a certain point, your central A/C will face reliability and efficiency issues, and it can be better to replace your equipment instead of paying for another repair.

Tom Fricker’s expert HVAC teams handle countless A/C installations in Bristol, Middlesex and Norfolk counties. We can help you look out for the warning signs of a struggling cooling system.

1. Weak airflow

An A/C system that doesn’t generate strong airflow isn’t doing much good for anyone. There might be a simple DIY fix: checking and changing your air filter. But if that doesn’t work, you could have a struggling or failing compressor or possibly leaky ducts. The best idea is to schedule a visit from an HVAC technician, especially if you haven’t had a tune-up recently.

2. Warm air from your vents

Warm air coming out of your vents might be a problem you can solve yourself. Ensure that your thermostat is set to “air conditioning” or “cool.” Also, confirm that your thermostat is set five degrees below the indoor temperature. If this doesn’t fix the problem, you may have a mechanical or refrigerant problem and should call us.

3. Leaking fluid

Air conditioning equipment generates moisture, but it shouldn’t leak into your living space. If it does, there could be a broken or blocked condensate drain line. We can generally resolve this problem quickly. It could also be leaking refrigerant, which is a more significant issue.

If your system is older and uses R-22 refrigerant, it’s almost always a better idea to replace it instead of repairing it. R-22 (also called Freon) has been discontinued. Both R-22 and parts for A/C equipment that use it are prohibitively expensive.

4. Rising electric bills

These days, we all hold our breath when we open our electric bills. But it can be even worse when an inefficient A/C makes your bills balloon. Check the number of kilowatt hours (kWh) you used this summer compared to last summer. If you’re using more electricity to stay cool, it might be time to install new, high-efficiency equipment.

And it’s a wonderful time to upgrade your cooling system. TF Complete Heating & Cooling can help you identify efficient products that may qualify for Inflation Reduction Act tax credits, as well as generous rebates through Mass Save.

5. Loud noises and odors

Be sure to listen for loud noises like grinding, popping, squealing and scraping coming from your cooling equipment. These might indicate a mechanical or electrical problem. Similarly, unpleasant smells from your vents or condenser might mean you have mold or mildew in your equipment. This will negatively impact its service life and lower your indoor air quality.

6. More frequent repairs

The Tom Fricker A/C repair team is always available if your unit needs service. But if you’re experiencing multiple breakdowns in a season, it’s likely time to look for an A/C replacement instead. Similarly, if the cost to repair your equipment is more than 50 percent of the price of new equipment, you should replace your system.

If you think it might be time to upgrade your home’s cooling system, contact TF Complete Heating & Cooling for a free estimate.

mail Contact us today to schedule a routine maintenance visit. If you need an emergency repair, please call our office right away at 508-507-6702, and we will get to your home as soon as we can.