Friday, October 30, 2009

Heat: its a Good Thing

Our house has ceiling heat as our primary (and only) source of heat. I had never heard of ceiling heat until we moved to Oregon. Each room has its own thermostat. Last winter we replaced all of the thermostats with new digital ones to better control the temperature in each room. The heat stopped working in the dining room, office, and laundry room. We were unsure if it was something that occurred during the remodel of the dining room or the thermostat replacement that caused it to stop working. The Alona's room also stopped working when we replaced the thermostat in there. We were just using little oil filled radiators that we bought at the store. When we found out we were moving (back in July) we thought we would be gone before the cold set in. So we gave our heaters to a friend. Well, here we are, still in this house and now it is cold. I have been thinking about it a lot. There has to be a way to fix the heat. I kept praying that it would miraculously start working again. Yesterday I realized that sometimes you have to help miracles along a little. So I started researching problems with ceiling heat on the internet. I couldn't find much, but it sounded like wiring could have so many issues. I talked to Jeff about it when he got home. He said he had reset the breaker several times in an effort to get it to work again. I asked him to turn the breaker off, completely reinstall the thermostat, and then flip the breaker back on. He was a little reluctant, but I insisted it was worth a try to get the heat working in the Alona's room. So he got his tools, turned off the breaker and started taking the thermostat off. He also took a look at the wiring on the thermostat in Ashley's room to see if it was the same (hers works). The wiring was the same and he hadn't done anything differently. He did say that when he originally installed the thermostat in Alona's room the wires sparked (yes, he should have turned off the breaker before messing with it, but hind sight is 20/20). That is why I was all about flipping the breaker- maybe reset it. Well, something worked. Alona's room now has heat. No more worrying about our kids freezing at night. We are thinking there is a fuse for the heat that requires a reset with no power for longer than it takes to flip a breaker back and forth. I know nothing of electrical wiring and ceiling heat, so I couldn't really say. Whatever it was, it now works and we are so very grateful.

As for the dining room and that side of the house (all part of the converted garage and on a separate breaker) we don't know what happened. We thought we heat the heating cable in the ceiling with a nail when we installed the crown molding in the dining room and it cut the cycle of power to the other rooms as well. We removed the nail and don't see a heat cable anywhere near it. So that isn't the issue. And if it was, you just have to crimp the cable back together to fix it. Simple. But not the issue. So we are going to try the breaker reset again and see what we can find. I guess we could have someone come look at it, but there aren't many people around who fix ceiling heat and the one guy I found charges $100 per room and he charges you to come assess the problem. If we can fix it ourselves I would really prefer that. I will continue to pray!

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