Archive for the ‘Heating and Cooling System ’ Category

Winter Newsletter

Posted on: January 30th, 2014 by RF Ohl

winter newsletter

Check out our latest newsletter where we discuss fuel delivery, peace of mind, understanding your delivery ticket, what to do if your heat is not working and much more. We also have opportunities for you to win a Weber grill and a $500 gift card. Click here to download the newsletter as a PDF file.

Helpful Information Regarding Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Posted on: January 21st, 2014 by RF Ohl

Carbon monoxide, with a chemical symbol of CO is a type of poisonous gas which is characterized as rather deceptive. This is because it is colorless, odorless, and tasteless – all three attributes that make it more like a silent killer. The gas is produced mostly by the incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels such as oil, wood, coal, and gas. However, it has to be noted that carbon-based fuels in general perspective are safe to use. However, the production of CO is the most unfortunate effect of using them. But then again, the production only happens when the fuel used isn’t burned properly, thereby resulting to a surplus of gas, which then is named as carbon monoxide. When this gas successfully penetrates the body, it will prevent the blood from distributing oxygen to the cells, organs, and tissues. This alone makes it a very deadly gas.

Yes, although you can smell or see it, carbon monoxide is actually a very potent killer. It harms without any kind of warning. Statistics say that each year, there are eleven people who die from carbon monoxide poisoning from gas appliances as well as fuels that haven’t been installed properly or those that haven’t been maintained or serviced for a very long time. While there are certain low levels that aren’t enough to kill, those levels of CO can still lead to very serious health issues, especially when the gas is breathed in a long period of time. In some of the most extreme and known cases, the inhalation of CO led to paralysis as well as brain damage.

Therefore, the increase and promotion of public knowledge about the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning is very crucial in today’s world, especially with the fact that majority of us are dependent to gas appliances.

The good thing is there are actually signs that you can easily look out for in order to determine incomplete burning is happening. For instance, if you happen to see yellow or orange flames instead of the usual blue, that’s a telltale sign. If you can see soot or brown staining in your appliance, that is another sign. Pilot lights that also blow out frequently usually mean there is incomplete combustion of the fuel. Finally, if you see increased condensation in your windows, it also means there is incomplete combustion of CO.

There are several reasons why carbon monoxide levels increase in one’s environment. This includes:

  • When appliances that use fuel are not properly functioning or when they are not properly vented.
  • When the home is air-tight in preparation for keeping the air warm during the winter season.
  • When the chimneys or vents are blocked.
  • When there is a cracked furnace exchanger.
  • When the vents are either disconnected or corroded.
  • When there is an insufficient air supply for fuel-burning equipment or appliance, thereby causing down-drafting.

What Are The Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?

The early signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning emulate common ailments and in several instances, it may well be confused with that of food poisoning or viral infection. You will know you are poisoned by CO if you experience the following:

  • Breathlessness
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Pain in the chest and stomach
  • Visual issues
  • Erratic behavior

Prevention is Better than Cure

The best way to fight carbon monoxide poisoning is preventing its buildup in the first place. What needs to be done is that you have to make sure that any fuel burning equipment or appliance you have at home should be in optimal condition to operate. They should also be vented with sufficient fresh air supply. If you have a barbecue grill that uses charcoal, never make the mistake of using it inside the home, garage, or any closed space. Likewise, your vehicle shouldn’t be running inside the garage. If you have a furnace at home, annual inspection must be done. Finally, annual maintenance is also necessitated for the home ventilation system, including the chimneys, fireplace, and space heaters.

Finding A Heating Contractor in Lehighton, PA

Posted on: January 17th, 2014 by RF Ohl

In this interview Steve Ohl from R.F. Ohl gives us some insight into what he would look for in a heating contractor in Lehighton PA.

Originally aired live on Jan 17, 2014

Top 7 Tips For Preventing Frozen Pipes This Winter

Posted on: January 8th, 2014 by RF Ohl

winterWhen temperatures start to plunge, homeowners begin to face another headache of combating the cold. But the thing is it’s not just about heating the home to provide comfort. There are other concerns that need to be addressed. One of them is the risk of freezing pipes. When the necessary steps aren’t performed, there is a great possibility that the pipes will become frozen in the cold season, and surely you don’t want that to happen.

The good news is we have seven tips for preventing frozen pipes for the winter:

  1. Make sure they are insulated. When pipes are exposed, they need insulation more than even. There are cases when the pipes are running up the wall and connected to another pipe on the upper floor. When the pipe touches an outside wall, it usually means it is not insulated. You can have the insulation installed around the pipe or purchase your own. You can find many of them in stores and they are easy to put in.
  2. Remove a hose that is hooked up in the backyard. There usually exists a shut-off valve found inside underneath the sink, where the hose is placed or connected. You have to shut off the valve and the open the valve located outside. This is for the purpose of letting water drip out. If you do this, you will be effectively preventing the pipes from bursting.
  3. Turn the faucet on. There is pressure building up in the pipes and if the water isn’t moving and then the pipe is suddenly exposed to extreme cold, there is a very good chance that it could freeze. In light of this possibility, what you can simply do is open up the faucet a bit. As you do this, the water will naturally move because of the opening. Hence, it will be prevented from freezing since it is not sitting. Opening the faucet about one quarter of the way will release the pressure building up in the pipes.
  4. Turn off the main shutoff valve. When there is a long power outage, perhaps a day or two, it is highly recommended that you turn off the main shutoff valve that controls the water coming into the home. You shut it off and open the faucets. What happens is that all the water will run through, making sure there are no water left in the pipes that could result to freezing.
  5. You also need to drain the water heater during the same power outage. This is to prevent the likelihood of damage. Traditionally, there are two valves found above the water heater. You need to shut them both off. You will also see spout in the bottom of the heater and that is actually where the water will drain. Keep in mind that during power outage, even hot water may freeze up.
  6. Do some preventative measures outside as well. For instance, be guided that a frozen garden hose can and will cause more damage compared to that of a busted one. In fact, it can lead to bursting an interior pipe. The moment the water in the hose becomes frozen, it will expand and increase pressure, affecting the entire system. So, be sure garden hoses are drained, disconnected, and stored right before the winter comes.
  7. But what if it’s too late and you already have frozen pipes? The best tip for this one is ask for help. For example, if a homeowner still has power at home but realizes the pipes may be frozen, it is emphasized and recommended that the homeowner shouldn’t tamper. Instead, he needs to call a plumber to address the problem. There have been many reports of incidents homeowners heating pipes on their own and in most instances, they do more harm than good and eventually inflict more damage on the pipes and the entire plumbing system.

Another thing to consider is to make sure that you have your heating system serviced and if it is an oil or kerosene heater, be sure that you have your fuel tank full. R.F. Ohl delivers oil and kerosene to households and businesses in Northeastern PA. Call today to schedule an oil delivery.

Heating Oil FAQs – East Stroudsburg Questions & More Part 2

Posted on: December 17th, 2013 by RF Ohl

Heating Oil FAQs (Part II)

This is part two of an interview segment with Steve Ohl, president of R.F. Ohl, where Steve answers some heating oil Frequently Asked Questions. Streamed live on December 17th, 2013:

Questions from this interview include:

  • Tammy from East Stroudsburg, PA: Do I need a chimney for oil heat?
  • AnneMarie from East Stroudsburg, PA: What’s the future for oil heat?
  • Frank from Saylorsburg, PA: When is it time to replace my oil tank?
  • Mike from Wind Gap, PA: What is a heating oil contract and what do I need to know?
  • Mary from Stroudsburg, PA: Who should service my oil heating system?
  • Tom from Bethlehem, PA: What is the reset button and how do I use it?