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April 2014 News Letter – Water Heater Woes

Did you know we inspect, service and install gas and electric water heaters? Water heaters are an essential appliance in today’s homes but they can also be a source of frustration if not working properly and very dangerous as well. An improperly installed or neglected water heater can explode, causing severe damage not only to your home but can endanger life and limb. Often, just a visual inspection can reveal the signs of impending failure with the handy tips below or if you’re unsure, we’ll be more than happy to assist with an inspection.
Aftermath of Water Heater Explosion

1. Is your water heater more than 10+ years old? Water heaters can last typically between 10 to 15 years. If yours is reaching the end of it’s service life, you’ll want to seriously consider replacing it before you make expensive repairs. Repairing an old water heater will only delay the inevitable, and a new unit will run much more efficiently than an older one.

2. Over time, an old unit can deliver less and less hot water, the output capacity drops significantly and you may be better off with a new unit now rather than continue paying good money for poor efficiency.

3. Have you had your unit serviced regularly? Shortened lifespans can be caused by neglecting to drain it annually, checking the anode rod every few years and testing the pressure relief valve. Skipping on regular maintenance means you could be heading for trouble. You should consult a professional.

4. Other signs of trouble include leaking, corrosion around fittings, heavy rust and or cracking. In these cases, replacement is usually the only option. Again, it’s best to consult a pro.

When in doubt, play it safe. Let a pro inspect and service your water heater. Give us a call, (504) 362-6300 for a quote!

March 2014 News Letter – Pre-Summer A/C Service

With summer just around the corner, now is the time to start thinking about your home’s A/C system. New Orleans summers are long, hot and very humid and can be very taxing on even the best machinery. Waiting until it’s 98 degrees and 98% humidity at 1:00 AM and having your system go down is not the best time to find out that a small problem could have been repaired long before it turned into a major, expensive headache! Here at Southern Contracting we care about your comfort and bottom line, it’s what we do and have been doing for 29 years continuously, serving you, our customers. We are currently offering a $10 off promotion on our regular $89.99 for an A/C system diagnosis just by mentioning this newsletter.

Here are a few common problems and symptoms of A/C system failures and poor performance.

1. A frozen coil can stop the air flow through your A/C unit. Basically the unit has formed a block of ice around the heat transfer coils and no air can pass through. This can be caused by anything from a dirty coil, a dirty filter, low refrigerant or too little airflow. A clean air filter will help keep your A/C system happy and functioning properly. Too often this simple maintenance task is neglected and will lead to a service call.

2. Sometimes, the system may be working but you hear unusual noises. This could be anything from a fan belt squealing on the blower to a bearing going bad and making a rumbling, grinding sound. Call us, we’ll be happy to do a diagnosis of the problem.
3. Water leaking from the inside unit can cause damage to your home, this means that the line from the drain pan is clogged and needs to be cleared. Left unrepaired you may end up with water damage to walls, floors, even ceilings depending where the unit is located. If the drain line isn’t cleared properly it can be damaged leading to even costlier repairs.

4. The system is running, you have air flow but the air isn’t cool. This could be low refrigerant and this is a problem only a trained professional can diagnose using the proper tools and equipment. If the refrigerant is low then the leak would need to be repaired before recharging to the proper level.

5. Electrical malfunctions can often shut your system down, a short circuit, poor connections, blown fuses, a faulty thermostat and more could be the culprit. Electrical systems should be diagnosed by a pro right away. A small problem could turn into a major and very costly failure not to mention the fire hazard.

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