How to Safely Supplement Your Furnace Heat

Tips for heating cold zones in your home

Winter made an early arrival in many parts of the nation, and this preview may have you thinking about how you’re going to keep your house warm when winter really sets in. Ohio winters can be unpredictable and harsh, so it’s a good idea to start planning for colder days now. If you have specific zones in your house that are cold, even when the furnace is running, you may want to look into some supplemental heating sources. The service team at Atlas Butler can help you prepare for winter by doing an inspection and tune-up of your furnace, as well as recommend supplemental heating systems.


There is nothing more relaxing than a crackling fireplace in the winter. Fireplaces can help heat rooms as well as lend a cozy ambiance. Traditional wood-burning fireplaces require annual maintenance for safety and functionality, and the chimney also needs inspection and cleaning in order to avoid chimney fires. If you don’t have a fireplace in your house, there are ways you can “fake it.” Gas and electric fireplaces can also add heat without the mess and upkeep of their traditional counterparts. Wood-burning fireplaces can be converted to gas and as a plus, gas fireplaces actually add more warmth to your rooms. The downside is increased gas or electric bills, depending on which model you choose.

Space heaters

Space heaters often get a bad rap because they are one of the most prevalent causes of winter house fires. However, if you use common sense and take safety precautions, a space heater can be a satisfactory and economical source of extra heating for your home. There are various types of space heaters.

  • Convection space heaters are the most common, and they heat up and disperse air throughout the room, are fan-driven and run on electricity.
  • Radiant space heaters heat up the element itself and “radiates” heat; they are better suited for small areas. Filled space heaters run on electricity and are filled with a substance, such as oil. Once they heat up, they will warm the area for longer periods of time compared to other space heaters.

Pellet stoves

Pellet stoves are the next generation of wood-burning stoves. Depending on the size, one of these stoves can heat an entire house. They burn organic wood-based pellets that emit clean energy. Pellet stoves are often less expensive than fireplaces and are easier to install. The drawbacks are that they need ongoing maintenance, such as being filled and cleaned out on a daily basis. They also require annual servicing.

Keep Your Furnace Running Smoothly

The goal of supplemental heat sources should always be to supplement the heat that your furnace puts out – not replace it. If your furnace is not working properly, the supplemental heat will be less effective and cost you more. Atlas Butler has been proudly serving Central Ohio for decades, and we can make sure that your furnace is running properly.  Schedule an appointment to have one of our heating technicians take a look at your furnace or call us at 614-681-2167.

2022-04-27T00:57:18-04:00December 21st, 2021|Furnace Maintenance|

Running Your AC Unit

Knowing When to Run Your AC

With summer is in full throttle, hopefully, your AC is keeping your home cool and comfortable. With the high heat of July/August, you want to keep your AC running to keep your home cool and combat the heat. If you turn your AC on and off to correspond with temperatures, you may be overworking your unit on hot days to keep up. We recommend you at least keep your thermostat at a moderately high setting (around 75-80) rather than turning it off, to avoid overworking the system.  

When the temperatures start to drop, you’ll want to adjust the thermostat and eventually turn it off when temperatures consistently reach the low 60’s. Your AC unit was not designed to run in cold temperatures and running it when temperatures are below 60 may damage the compressor, which can be a costly repair. 

If your air conditioner is not keeping your house cool, you may have an issue. You don’t want to wait too long to address the problem. If your AC isn’t cooling your home properly, give the service pros at Atlas Butler a call at 614-681-2167. With our AC repair service, we’ll inspect your AC and address whatever needs to be fixed to get your home cool again. We are available 24/7.

2022-02-13T16:28:13-05:00August 15th, 2021|Air Conditioner Maintenance, HVAC Topics|

Optimize Air Flow in the Summer

Now that it’s summer, A/Cs are running full blast in most parts of the country and Central Ohio is no exception. If you want to lessen the strain on your air conditioning unit, as well as lower your utility bills, there are several steps you can take to improve the airflow inside your house. The first and easiest is to make sure the filters on your HVAC system are changed monthly. This will make a huge difference in indoor air quality. You can also take advantage of cooler mornings and evenings and open the windows and doors to let the air circulate after the house has been shut up all day. Exhaust fans, ceiling fans, and attic fans all work to circulate air through your home and remove any humidity. Also, make sure that the vents and returns are clear; remove any furniture that may be blocking air vents. If despite your best efforts, your home still feels too warm, call Atlas Butler at 614-681-2167. We can look at your AC unit to make sure it is running properly or it may be that your ducts need cleaning.

2021-12-09T11:53:28-05:00July 10th, 2021|home energy efficiency, Indoor Air Quality|

The Benefits of Having Your Ducts Cleaned

Did you know that you should have the duct work in your home cleaned every 7 years? During that time, your air ducts pick up dust, dander and particles that can cause a few issues. 

First, the air quality in your home is impacted by the build up in your ducts. Your air filter will catch some of those particles, but depending on the type of house filter you have, some of those particles may be re-entering the air in your home. Air quality is a big reason that our customers schedule to have their ducts cleaned.

Secondly, dust build up in your ducts decreases air flow to the rooms in your house. Your HVAC system, including your duct work, was designed to push the air throughout your home. A layer of dust reduces the duct capacity to hold the air, resulting in less efficient air flow and forcing your system to work harder to achieve the target temperature. 

If you haven’t had your ducts professionally cleaned recently, or if you have pets that shed, you are probably due. Atlas Butler has you covered with our whole house duct cleaning service. One of our techs will spend between 4-6 hours working our brush and vacuum equipment through the ducts in your home to clean out the debris and buildup. Schedule a duct cleaning appointment today, or call our support team at 614-681-2167

2022-02-13T16:31:26-05:00April 30th, 2021|duct cleaning, Indoor Air Quality|

Tips for Maximizing A/C Efficiency

Did you know that only 1/20” of dust on your air conditioner coils can decrease the unit’s efficiency by 15-20 percent? You can do the math and see the impact that has on our energy bills. That minute amount of dust is invisible to the naked eye, but you will definitely feel it inside your house as the temperature rises. Your AC will run and run and run, but the indoor temperature won’t budge and may even increase.

Plus, if your AC unit has to work harder than is necessary, the wear and tear on your air conditioner may wear down more quickly and require expensive repairs or even a replacement before you are ready. 

That is why it’s important to have a complete AC tune-up each spring before you turn on the unit for the next several months. The service pros at Atlas Butler will inspect your air conditioner and thoroughly clean the coils and other components to remove dust and debris that has accumulated during the winter.

Regular maintenance of your air conditioning system is a good investment in terms of comfort and cost. What you spend on the service call will pay for itself in increased efficiency and longevity of the AC unit itself, as well as maintaining a cool home during the hot Ohio summers. Schedule your spring AC tune-up today by calling Atlas Butler at 614-681-2167. You can also schedule an appointment online for faster service.

2022-02-13T16:28:57-05:00April 15th, 2021|Air Conditioner Maintenance|

Spring AC Maintenance Recommendations

Warmer weather is right around the corner, which means it’s almost time to crank up the AC. After sitting dormant during the harsh winter, your AC unit may need a tune up. The cold winter months can be tough on AC units, and an annual AC service call from the pros at Atlas Butler is just what you need.

Your AC needs regular maintenance just like your car to maintain peak performance. We can inspect your AC system to make sure it is ready for the summer workload. We run through our maintenance check list that includes checking refrigerant levels, looking for leaks, cleaning out debris left from fall/winter, and verifying that your AC unit’s motor and capacitor are functioning properly. In some cases, we can replace  worn-out parts, like fan motors, ahead of time can save you costly repairs in the future and can extend the life of your AC unit.

Don’t sweat the heat this summer with an AC that breaks down after the temperatures rise. Start with a spring AC check-up by giving us a call us at 614-681-2167, or for an online appointment, you can use our online scheduler to get a tech out to your home.

2022-02-13T16:29:31-05:00April 1st, 2021|Air Conditioner Maintenance|

Tips for Improving Air Quality

Improving Indoor Air Quality in Your Home

Frigid temperatures combined with continued sheltering at home to slow the COVID-19 virus have kept Central Ohioans indoors for longer periods of time during these winter months. The longer you are in your home, the more you notice dust buildup, dander and other pollutants and other particles that germs attach themselves to, which can cause respiratory problems.

Improving indoor air quality does a few things, mainly curtail germs, pollutants and other irritants that circulate through the house. To meet the demand for air quality improvement, manufacturers have increased production of UV light systems that kill germs, air purifications systems to install at the furnace level and HEPA filters to remove irritants from the duct system. 

If you want to keep your home cleaner and safer for your family, then give the service pros at Atlas Butler a call at 614-681-2167 to schedule an appointment. We will conduct an assessment of your house and HVAC system to recommend the best system for healthier indoor air quality.

2021-12-09T11:53:28-05:00January 13th, 2021|Indoor Air Quality|

Changing Your Furnace Filter

How often should you change your filter?

Your furnace filter plays an important role in the heating and cooling of your home. Furnace filters are designed to trap particles that are pulled through your cold air ducts and routed back to the heat exchange before being pushed back into your home. When those filters are not changed, it can not only affect the air quality in your home but can also affect the air flow to your vents. 

See what our pro’s have to say about furnace filters. 

There is no set formula, as every home is different. The type of filters you use also makes a big difference. Typical one-inch fiberglass filters need to be changed monthly; more durable filters, such as the orange/white MERV8 filters can go about six months before being changed. The cleanliness of your air ducts also is a big factor in how long your filters can go between changes. Dirty air ducts, pet hair and dust and grime can have a huge impact on your home’s indoor air quality by decreasing efficiency of the air conditioner and furnace.

If the air quality in your home is poor or you are not getting enough air flow to the rooms in your home, schedule an appointment with Atlas Butler to have one of our trained technicians examine your furnace. You can also call us at 614-681-2167 to schedule an appointment. 

2021-12-09T11:53:29-05:00November 11th, 2020|HVAC Vlogs|

Tips For Keeping Your Heat Pump Running Year Round

Even though it’s called a heat pump, your heat pump plays a vital role in keeping your home comfortable all year round. In winter, a heat pump moves heat from one location to another, usually from the air or ground and transfers it throughout a house or building. During the late spring, summer and early fall, the heat pump operates in reverse and cools your home. It’s the same concept — except the warm inside air blows through refrigerant-filled coils and the cooled air is distributed throughout your house. Heat pumps are more efficient than traditional HVAC systems as they don’t have to heat the air in order to warm your house, and you also don’t need separate heating and cooling systems.

Keeping Your Heat Pump Running

Like any other major home system, in order to get the best performance out of your heat pump, you need to stick to a regular maintenance schedule; usually spring and fall. That’s where the HVAC professionals at Atlas Butler can help. We will assess your heating and cooling needs, help you choose the best heat pump for you home, and advise you on how to get the best performance from it year-round. If you haven’t had your heat pump serviced in a while, contact our team to schedule an appointment

Here is what type of heat pump maintenance is performed:

  • Check motors and capacitors
  • Check air ducts, coils, blowers and indoor coil to make sure they are clear of debris
  • Check air ducts and refrigerant levels for leakage
  • Make sure the thermostat is working correctly
  • Check all electrical components
  • Test all safety controls

Between maintenance visits, there are several things that you, as a home owner, can do to keep your heat pump in top shape:

  • Change your air filter every month
  • Make sure that indoor registers are free of dust and debris
  • Remove foliage and brush from around the outdoor unit
  • During the winter, keep the heat pump clear of snow and ice
  • Schedule regular maintenance

Another tip to ensure optimal performance from your heat pump is to install a programmable thermostat to maintain a consistent indoor temperature. Follow the manufacturer’s recommended settings, but a general rule of thumb is to not go below 70 degrees in the summer and below 65 degrees in the winter. The service team at Atlas Butler is very familiar with the climate in Central Ohio and can give you the best advice about your thermostat settings.

Considering a heat pump?

A new heat pump is a good investment because it will pay for itself over time through savings on your heating and cooling bills.  In addition, you only have the upkeep of one system to deal with, which reduces costs — and headaches! If you are thinking of switching to a heat pump, Atlas Butler installs energy efficient heat pumps. We have proudly served the Central Ohio for decades and can help you select the best heat pump to keep your home comfortable during the scorching summers and brutal winters. Our motto through the years has been “Strength Through Service,” and we stand by it today. Call us at 614-681-2167.


2021-12-09T11:53:29-05:00August 27th, 2020|Furnace Maintenance, home energy efficiency|

Signs Your Water Heater is On It’s Last Leg

Your water heater may be one of the most valuable appliances in your house. Not only does it provide hot water on demand for showers and baths, but it also provides hot water for your other appliances – washing machine, dishwasher, etc. So when your hot water tank goes out, you will begin to notice signs of wear and tear. Here are a few signs that your hot water tank is starting to go.

Decreased water temperature

If you like a nice hot shower in the morning, you’ll notice a drop in temperature. A drop in temperature indicates that the heating elements are not functioning properly. A licensed plumber can inspect the heating elements to ensure they are functioning properly. 

Discolored water

When you turn your faucet on, if you see rust colored or brown water flowing from the tap, that may be an indication that you water tank is going bad. The most common reason for a failing water tank is a build up of sediment in the tank, which over time will damage the interior of the tank, and that sediment is what causes the water to turn colors. 

Water leaks around the tank

If you notice water leaks around the base of the tank, the sediment has built up at the bottom of the tank and over time has damaged the internal tank. This sediment build up can lead to corrosion, which leads to the leaks you see on your floor. 

A noisy water heater

For the most part, hot water heaters are quiet, so if you hear noises coming from your hot water tank, it may be a sign of a future repair or replacement. 

Your tank is getting old

You can tell the age of your water tank by looking at the serial number. The average lifespan of a hot water tank is 7-10 years, which is the timeframe in which you will see these types of issues pop up. If you have an old water tank, it may be time to have a new water tank installed by the pros.

If you are seeing any of these signs, the pros at Atlas Butler provide service for hot water tanks. Our experts can examine your hot water tank and let you know if the existing unit can be repaired or if you are better off replacing the hot water tank. You can request an appointment online or call our team at 614-681-2183 to get an appointment with Atlas Butler, Central Ohio’s leading HVAC and Plumbing company.   

2021-12-09T11:53:29-05:00August 5th, 2020|Water Heater|
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