ABC Blog

My Hot Tub Is Not Heating Up: What Is Going On?

A hot tub that is not heating up correctly

Hot tub owners often look forward to the end of the day when they can unwind and relax as they step into the warm water. If you turned your hot tub on hours ago and it still feels lukewarm, you are likely left wondering why your hot tub is not heating up. What might be going on with your hot tub and how can you fix it?

There are a few reasons why your hot tub may not be working properly: clogged parts, broken switches, a malfunctioning thermostat, a broken pump or a faulty heating element.

Clogged Pipes Or Filters

Dirt, debris and leaves can make their way into your hot tub either because of the wind or sometimes on the bottoms of your feet. The filters throughout the hot tub help to keep the water clean and the experience enjoyable. But, if too much dirt enters the filters, there won’t be any … Read Full Post »

My Furnace Won’t Ignite: What Should I Do?

Furnace Won't Ignite

You are ready to curl up to enjoy a movie on the couch when you realize that it is still freezing in your home despite turning on your furnace. After some quick investigating, you come to the conclusion that your furnace won’t ignite. Sadly, there is not an easy answer to why this might be happening.

Any of the following problems could be responsible for your furnace not working properly:

  • Clogged filters
  • Loose wiring
  • Low gas supply
  • Malfunctioning thermostat
  • Your pilot light is out
  • The furnace is old or broken

Some of these problems will be easier fixes, while others will require professional help. When your pilot light goes out, your furnace won’t ignite and heat your home. Sometimes, this is the only problem that you need to fix, and things will go back to normal. Other times, the pilot light is still on, but other parts of the furnace could be malfunctioning. Or, it could be that … Read Full Post »

Why Is My Electric Bill So High?

Why Is My Electric Bill So High

No homeowner wants to be hit with a surprisingly large utility bill. With so many other things on your plate, it can be hard to determine exactly why your energy costs might have skyrocketed suddenly, or why your monthly costs have gotten so expensive over time. If you find yourself in the position of asking yourself: Why is my electric bill so high?, you should know that while there are actually a number of factors that could be responsible, the most likely is a problem with your heating and cooling system.

Air Conditioning Or Heating Issues

You may not realize that keeping your home at a comfortable temperature typically accounts for nearly half of your energy use for any given month. Reviewing your billing history is always a good place to start your research if you feel something is amiss. Check your current statement against the same month one year ago. In … Read Full Post »

Why Is My Hot Water Heater Leaking?

Hot water heater leaking

No homeowner wants to discover a leak. Dripping water isn’t just an annoyance—it can cause serious damage to your property if left unattended. When you combine leaks with hot water heaters or electricity, potential dangers increase. So, what does it mean if your hot water heater is leaking? And more importantly, what should you do about it?

There are many possible reasons why your water heater might be leaking, including:

  • Your valves need to be replaced or tightened
  • Your fittings or supply piping need to be replaced
  • You need to install an expansion tank
  • There is condensation
  • Built-up sediment is causing the tank to crack and leak
  • There is a larger problem which may force you to consider replacing your water heater

Obviously, some of these problems are more serious than others. Unfortunately, neglecting to address the issue will only continue to allow mold and mildew to grow in the area around your water heater. Even condensation may … Read Full Post »

Do Squirrels Eat Mice? How To Stop An Infestation

Do Squirrels Eat Mice

There are holes in the food boxes in your pantry. You hear scratching in the walls throughout the night. You’re in denial until one night you see it—a mouse. Horrified, you start to wonder about how you can keep these creatures away. Are there any creatures around your property that eat mice? For example, do squirrels eat mice?

While a squirrel will eat a mouse, it would prefer not to. Like all other animals, squirrels require protein, carbs and fat in their diet. While they would prefer to get these nutrients from nuts, leaves, mushrooms, roots, seeds and insects, they’ll eat from a larger menu when the going gets tough. So, if the squirrel on your property is faced with starving to death or eating the mice in your attic, they’ll decide on the latter.

What this means for you is that squirrels are not going to be an effective method of … Read Full Post »

Will Pipes Freeze At 32 Degrees? Avoiding Disaster

Will Pipes Freeze at 32 Degrees

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Here in Texas, we are lucky that our winters are relatively mild. However, we do have those nights where it can get a bit chillier than we’re accustomed to. When it drops below freezing, many homeowners start to wonder: Will pipes freeze at 32 degrees? Water freezes at 32 degrees, so technically that is the temperature at which it becomes possible for pipes to freeze as well. That said, it’s not quite that simple.

Pipes can freeze at 32 degrees or below, but it will take a sustained period of time for this to happen. In other words, a pipe needs to be at freezing temperatures for at least half a day before homeowners have to worry about any freezing occurring. And, generally speaking, the temperature needs to be well below 32 for at least that length of time before freezing becomes likely.

While you may assume that homeowners in the North … Read Full Post »

Where To See Christmas Lights In Austin & Holiday Events

Christmas lights in Austin

Wondering about the best places to see Christmas lights in Austin this holiday season? You’re in luck, since our town has a multitude of fabulous spots for enjoying spectacular lights displays. We’ve also got holiday events of all varieties, whether you enjoy neighborhood light displays; larger, more ceremonial holiday light events; gingerbread house building; live performances or something else entirely. Read on to learn where to see the best Christmas lights in Austin and find out about other fun, popular holiday events around town, so you and your loved ones can make holiday memories that will warm your hearts for years to come.

The Best Christmas Events In Austin For Families

We are lucky to have so many great Christmas events in Austin, and many of them are perfect for families, as well as individuals of all ages. Here are some of our favorite Christmas events so that you and your family … Read Full Post »

Why Is My Furnace Short Cycling?

Furnace short cycling

If you turn on your furnace and discover it’s not heating your home properly, you probably realize how much you take your heater for granted. In some cases, it may seem as though your furnace shuts off just about as quickly as it turns back on. If this has ever happened to you, you probably have asked yourself: Why is my furnace short cycling?

Homeowners in this situation can usually blame one (or more of the following) culprits for this issue: a clogged air filter, a dirty flame sensor, an oversized unit or a malfunctioning thermostat.

Clogged Air Filter

When your system’s filters are caked with dust particles, pet hair, pet dander and other debris that make it into your indoor environment, this buildup restricts airflow. The warm air becomes blocked in your furnace, raising its internal temperature. This warm air sends a signal to your system to shut off.

A furnace that turns … Read Full Post »

Why Is Cold Air Blowing Out Of Vents When The Heat Is On?

Cold air blowing out of vents when heat is on

When you come home on a chilly day, the last thing you want is to be met with is a gust of cold air blowing out of your vents when the heat is on. This unpleasant surprise is common, unfortunately, and can make uncomfortably cold weather that much more difficult to handle. Thankfully, there are a few common causes of this issue that can help you identify a solution.

Your Air Filter Is Dirty

Did changing your air filters slip your mind? Clogged air filters could be causing cold air to blow out of your vents. A dirty air filter can block airflow over your furnace’s heat exchanger, which can cause it to overheat. Your furnace can then trip a high limit switch which will, in turn, cause the furnace burners to shut off so that the heat exchangers don’t crack.

Your Pilot Light Is Out

If you have an older furnace with a … Read Full Post »

Possum Out During The Day: Is It Rabid?

Possum During The Day

It can be somewhat shocking to look outside and notice a possum out during the day. The first question that probably pops into your mind is: “Is it rabid?” After all, many of us have heard that raccoons that are active during daylight hours are more likely to have rabies, so it would make sense for the same logic to apply to a possum, another nocturnal animal. Right?

The truth is, while rabies might cause normally nocturnal animals like raccoons and skunks to behave in strange ways, including venturing out during daylight hours, possums aren’t actually likely to contract rabies. Furthermore, possums (as well as raccoons and skunks) can be active during the day even when they are perfectly healthy. For example, it’s possible that a smaller possum out during the day is immature and has been separated from its mother or even orphaned. Or, a larger adult possum venturing out … Read Full Post »