Frequently Asked Questions

At Total Comfort Solutions, we answer your plumbing and HVAC questions. Contact us for more information! We proudly serve Walla Walla, College Place, and the surrounding areas.

A burning plastic smell from your heater probably indicates that you have plastic wrapping, plastic toys, or other debris in your vents or ducts. Another possible reason for a burning plastic smell could be overheating plastic-coated wires, capacitors, or fan belts. Burning plastic is toxic, so make sure you turn off the heating system and address the issue right away.

Although furnaces can either catch fire or explode, it’s highly unlikely. Manufacturers design furnaces to shut off if they detect the danger of a fire or explosion. If you invest in preventive furnace maintenance and keep your unit in good repair, you won’t have to worry about any fires or explosions.

Gas or vinegar smells every time you turn on your AC often point to improperly drained water inside your unit. Failing to address the issue right away will likely lead to mold and mildew problems. Other possible causes of that sour, vinegar-like smell include:
  • An electric motor that emits ozone.
  • A malfunctioning filter.
  • Mold in the ductwork.
  • Excessive condensation on coils.
  • A clogged condensate pan or drain line.

Fixing water pressure issues can range from quick fixes to costly projects. With a bit of know-how, some investigation, and a plumber’s expert help, you should be able to improve the water pressure in your home. The following solutions can come in handy when working to improve your water pressure issues:
  • Contact your neighbors to see if they’re experiencing a similar issue.
  • Check your well pump.
  • Test the pressure yourself.
  • Fix a broken pressure regulator.
  • Clear buildup or corrosion in pipes.
  • Open your main water valve.
  • Check for leaks.
  • Replace your regulator.
  • Install a water pressure booster.
Some of the tasks above require a plumber’s expertise. Don’t hesitate to contact our Total Comfort Solutions team for help.

Several things can cause your home’s water supply to run out faster than usual. The most common culprits include:
  • Sediment buildup
  • A broken dip tube
  • A faulty blower heating element
Water heater repair is complicated. The necessary repairs are often difficult, requiring high skill levels and expertise. As soon as you encounter issues with your water supply, get in touch with Total Comfort Solutions. We’ll diagnose problems with your system and recommend the best solution.

We know that the cost of any repair or installation is a major factor in deciding what company to use. Every situation is unique, so we can’t provide a blanket answer to this question. Our worry-free process included upfront pricing. Here’s how it works:
  • For repairs: Give us a call and our customer service representative will tell you exactly how much it will cost to send a fully trained and licensed technician to your home. This will include the base fee to cover the time of the technician to come to your home to assess the problem and any travel they may need to do to reach you.
  • If you give our team the go-ahead, they will schedule a trained technician to come out - before they even leave they will ensure their vehicle is stocked and ready with parts they anticipate they may need based on how you describe the problem. Once they arrive, they will diagnose the problem and then explain what’s going on to you. They will be able to provide options for repair or replacement, a timeline for when that work can be done, and the estimated cost for each option. They will always provide upfront pricing before completing any service that would incur charges beyond the initial fee.
  • For installations: If you are considering installing a new HVAC or sewer system or are planning a remodel involving sinks, toilets, showers, or tubs, we can provide an estimate for free. Our expert Comfort Consultants will discuss your specific project and unique needs and will develop a tailored quote for your needs.

We service the following cities and zip codes in Washington and Oregon:


  • Walla Walla: 99362
  • College Place: 99324
  • Touchet: 99360
  • Waitsburg: 99361
  • Dayton: 99328
  • Pomeroy: 99347
  • Prescott: 99348
  • Burbank: 99323
  • Lowden: 99362


  • Milton Freewater: 97862
  • Athena: 97813
  • Weston: 97886
  • Pendleton: 97801
  • Umapine: 97862
We do not serve the Tri-Cities at this time.

Our heating and cooling technicians provide repair and installation on heat pumps, furnaces, gas fireplaces, air conditioners, ductless mini splits, thermostats, gas lines, blower motors, and more! Our plumbers address common plumbing issues such as clogged drains, backed-up sewer systems, leaky faucets, and mystery flooding. We repair and install showers, sinks, toilets, water heaters (both tankless and traditional), water treatment systems, and more! We do not provide duct cleaning services. We do not offer backflow testing. We do not perform appliance repair - we can address a water line issue to an appliance, but do not work on appliances themselves.

Free estimates are provided for heating, cooling, sewer system installations, and plumbing remodels.

If you smell natural gas or have any reason to suspect a leak - vacate immediately and call 911 or your power company. Your gas company will come out to check for a leak and identify the source. If one is detected, Total Comfort Solutions can help repair broken gas lines.

We know that we can withstand freezing temperatures for short amounts of time outdoors when bundled up well, but what about for prolonged periods indoors? Will I freeze in my sleep? Ideally, rooms should be at or above 63 degrees F - this is a temperature that allows for us to keep our body temperatures regulated through clothing and blankets. However, most healthy adults can handle living in lower temperatures for short durations if made necessary due to power outages or furnace issues. In most cases, bundling up by wearing more layers than usual indoors is enough to keep you safe. In extreme situations, reduce the risk of overnight cold by identifying one room in your home for sleeping that is your “warm room” - ideally a small room with few or no windows and good insulation including carpeted floors. Improve insulation by covering windows and keeping the door closed. Wear layers and use heated/mylar blankets, and sleeping bags rated for cold weather. Hot water bottles, hand warmers, and space heaters can help too. While a hot shower might seem like a good idea to warm up, the water evaporating off of you as you dry will lower your body temperature significantly, so it’s best to stay dry. Remember that the risk comes when your body temperature falls below 95 degrees, regardless of the air temperature around you. For the elderly and young children, this may happen much quicker due to lower body mass and less insulation. If you are shivering, it’s probably a sign that it is too cold.

Your HVAC system operates by measuring the temperature in your home and turning the heating and cooling system on or off depending on your thermostat settings. However, most systems only measure the temperature at one location within your home - usually near the thermostat - this means that there may be other areas of your home that are a different temperature and won’t kick the system on. When possible, leave doors throughout the home open. Heat will flow from warmer areas to colder areas, but only if it has a way through. Check that the vents to that area are open and not blocked by anything on the floor. Remove the vent cover and check inside for debris or foreign objects.

If your house feels warmer or colder than you’ve set your thermostat to, it may be due to variations in air flow throughout the home. Make sure all of your vents are unblocked and your doors are open when possible. If this is a persistent issue, you may need to have your system evaluated to see if it is powerful enough for the square footage in your home. If the temperature reading on the thermostat is outside your set range, it may be that your system isn’t “keeping up.” During extreme weather - such as a heat wave or cold snap - your system may lag a bit behind. As long as it is staying within a few degrees of your set temperature, doesn’t get more extreme with time and your home isn’t comfortable, it’s likely nothing to worry about.

If you notice that your home is warmer or colder than you’re used to, you may wonder if your system has stopped working. Often our systems function so smoothly we don’t need to think about them! You can check to see if your system is working by adjusting the temperature on your thermostat and seeing if you hear the system kick on or feel air from the vents. You can also check that the system has power by checking your breaker box to see if a fuse has blown or a breaker has flipped. You can locate your breaker box in your garage, basement, or utility room. You can also intentionally flip the breaker and reset it which may kick it back on.

This may mean your thermostat does not have power to it. Try replacing the thermostat’s batteries - many run on AA or AAA batteries which you likely already have on hand.

There are some troubleshooting steps that you can take on your own at home. Reset your system according to the instructions in the owner’s manual. Find the owner’s manual online by searching the model number.

There should be a valve near the fixture that is leaking that you can use to shut off the water supply. You can also shut off the main water supply to stop a major flood - this should be located near where the water supply comes into your house. Keep in mind that if the temperatures are freezing, standing water will freeze so it’s best to keep at least a little flow.

If there is standing water high enough to hit an electrical outlet or in an area with appliances or cords on the ground, use the breaker box to shut off power to the area before entering to avoid the risk of electrical shock. For a slow leak, catch water in a container and empty it outside. Beware of emptying it into any drains until you know the source of the leak. Dry out wet areas as soon as possible to reduce the risk of mold. A wet vac can help to suck up excess water and box fans and dehumidifiers help dry out the area. Lift carpet to soak up excess water beneath it. Contact a restoration company as soon as possible.

Do you have questions regarding plumbing and HVAC services in Walla Walla, WA, or the surrounding area? Our experts at Total Comfort Solutions can provide the answers you need. Call us today at 509-676-4215 to speak to a friendly representative and schedule service.