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How to Keep Your Heater Up and Running: An Interview with Mike Dubose of Iwanda Services

By Mike Dubose

Tell us a little bit about your company and the services you offer.

We are Professional Handymen and licensed in HVAC Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning. For more information, see our website.

What are some of the most common reasons why people's heating systems in Texas break down, need repair or need to be replaced?

From what I've seen on heater service calls in the past, there are 4 reasons heaters break down.

A. Poor initial installation or design flaws in air flow or dirty filters.

B. Quality of product. Everyone wants cheap replacement instead of spending a little more for a good product. Using a licensed contractor is another mistake.

C. Age of product. 10-15 years is the max life span for trouble-free heating using a quality product.

D. Choice of heating. Gas heating is the cheapest to use in the long run followed by the Heat Pump then last is Electric Heat. The Heat Pump is the last choice by Contractors because they don't understand it and the installation is confusing to many so they advise against it.

Is there anything that a homeowner can do to help avoid paying for unnecessary heater repairs?

Have a licensed contractor inspect the house instead of a home inspector. Home inspectors do not do much more than record temperatures and visually inspect the system. If I were buying a home, I would want to know the age of the system, and was a Heat load done when it was originally installed. Has a Blower door test been done to see if the tightness of the duct system and the whole house is adequate.

Can you briefly describe what an ideal maintenance plan would be?

Upon buying the home, have a temperature rise test and benchmark the rise. Keep filters clean. Have a once a year check on your system in the fall to check temperatures, dirty filters, oil the blower motor, clean the outside unit and Freon levels on (Heat Pumps).

Do you have any tips to help homeowners decide when they should repair their heating system versus replacing it?

Always repair first if you trust the diagnosis by your contractor and don't be in a hurry to get it done. Get multiple bids and a second opinion. Go with Quality. Go with gas heating or heat pumps.

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About The Author

Mike Dubose owns and manages Iwanda Services.

Phone: 409-234-0211

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