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Below you’ll find a collection of previous heating, cooling, and related questions along with the answers we provided.
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Recently Asked Questions
What is the average life expectancy of equipment?
Can I just replace the outdoor unit on an older system to save money?
Will a bigger sized system perform better?
No, you don’t want your air conditioner to be too big. Air conditioners control the comfort level in your home by cooling the air and by removing humidity. An over-sized air conditioner will cool your home faster, but it will use more energy and will not remove humidity adequately.A unit that is too big for your home will have short run cycles. It may take only a short time to cool the air, but the unit shuts off before enough air blows across the indoor coil where moisture condenses into water and drains from your system. Too much moisture left in the air can lead to mold and mildew problems.These short run cycles also mean your system starts and stops more often which uses more energy and causes a lot of wear and tear. An air conditioner operates more efficiently during long run cycles.The same holds true with heating systems. An over-sized furnace will warm the house quicker, but it uses more fuel and causes greater temperature swings in the home.
Why is a system with matched components so important?
How often should I change my air filter?
Why should I switch to a high efficiency air filter?
Should I have my furnace and air conditioner serviced every year?
Why should I purchase a service agreement?
How can I reduce allergens and improve the air quality in my home?
I am concerned about mold growth, what should I do?
Molds are part of the natural environment. Outdoors, molds play a part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves and dead trees, but indoors, mold growth should be avoided. Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air. Mold may begin growing indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet. There are many types of mold, and none of them will grow without water or moisture. Click here to learn more about mold prevention in your home from the EPA.When humid air passes over chilled cooling coils, water condenses and drips through the coils into a collection pan, from which it continuously drains. Problems with these systems may occur when this water collects and becomes stagnant when it becomes blocked, either on the coils or in the drip pan. The pan will grow mold that can infect your home with dangerous mold spores very quickly. Problems also exist when the HVAC ducting contains microscopic mold spores that stay continually present and blow contaminants around the home or office often caused by mold in other parts of your home.You can do 3 things to prevent mold growth in your system:
- Preventative maintenance will ensure that the collection pan under the indoor coil stays clean and clog free. Click here to view our preventative maintenance program.
- Install ultra violet lights next to the cooling coils to kill any mold or bacteria growing on the coils or collection pan. Click here to view the UV lights we offer.
- Keep your ductwork clean and use a high-efficiency filtration system to keep your entire HVAC system clean.
What does SEER, AFUE, and HSPF ratings mean to me?
SEER, AFUE and HSPF are all measures of energy efficiency. Air conditioners may look similar, but their Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating (SEER) can vary widely. Higher SEER numbers save more money spent on electricity. A 13 SEER air conditioner, the EPA “current minimum standard”, uses 23% less energy than a 10 SEER unit (EPA standard up until Jan. 2006). Even though 13 SEER is the minimum efficiency available, we currently offer a line of air conditioners that start at 13 SEER and go all the way up to a 21 SEER . Depending on your average usage, higher SEER air conditioners can significantly reduce your electric bill.Heat pumps have SEER ratings like air conditioners and Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) ratings for measuring heating efficiency. Higher HSPF ratings mean greater energy savings. The HSPF scale range is 7.5 to 13.0.Today’s new high-efficiency furnaces can save up to 50% in operating costs over a ten-year-old furnace. Many 1990 and earlier model furnaces have Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) ratings of 65% or less. The minimum AFUE rated furnace that can be sold in the United States as of May 1, 2013 is 80% in southern states and 90% in northern states.Our current product offering starts at this minimum AFUE rating and goes all the way to a very efficient 98.3% AFUE rating. Depending on your average usage, higher AFUE rated furnaces can significantly reduce your gas bill.
How can I reduce my energy costs?
- Upgrade to a high-efficiency air conditioner – Swapping your old, inefficient air conditioning system for a high-efficient one can cut electricity bills by one-third. Consult one of our professional technicians to ensure your system is the right size for your home, and you aren’t over- or under-cooling for your space needs.
- Turn up the temperature – To save electricity during the summer, set the temperature above 75° as every degree below this will add an extra three to five percent to your energy bill.
- Install ceiling fans – Change the direction of airflow on your ceiling fans. In the summer, the blades should operate in a counter-clockwise direction as a way of creating a nice, gentle wind.
- Have an annual maintenance performed – Having an annual maintenance performed on your air conditioner by a licensed technician will help ensure it operates at its peak efficiency and catches any potential breakdowns before they occur.
- Don’t block vents in well-used rooms – Keep your supply and return air vents free of objects like blinds, carpets or furniture so your air conditioner can operate efficiently and there is even cool air distribution.
- Upgrade to a high-efficiency furnace – New high-efficiency furnaces use up to 50% less fuel than an older system. It can save you up to 25 per cent of your home-heating costs in one year, and within a few years, you’ll have recovered the initial cost of replacing/upgrading your furnace. Choosing a model with an energy efficient motor can save 20 to 50 percent of the energy needed to continuously operate a fan motor. Let us show you the advantages of replacing your old furnace today.
- Have an annual maintenance performed – Having an annual maintenance performed on your furnace by a licensed technician will help ensure it operates at its peak efficiency and catches any potential breakdowns before they occur.
- Install a programmable thermostat – A programmable thermostat enables you to control your home’s temperature when you’re away or asleep. For every 1° you lower your thermostat for seven hours per day, you save one percent on your heating bill.
- Don’t block vents in well-used rooms – Keep your supply and return air vents free of objects like blinds, carpets or furniture so your furnace can operate efficiently and there is even heat distribution.
- Install ceiling fans – Change the direction of airflow on your ceiling fans. In the winter, the blades should operate in a clockwise direction helping to push the warm air from the ceiling down into the room.
Why should I buy Energy Star labeled equipment?
What is a Heat Pump?
What is a Hybrid Heat Dual Fuel system?
What is a Geothermal system?
What are the advantages of equipment with variable speed fans?
How does 2-Stage heating or cooling work?
2-stage cooling is a method of cooling that can better manage the cooling of your home while outdoor temperatures are changing. It can also better maximize indoor comfort and energy efficiency. 2-stage cooling systems are typically the most energy efficient systems out there.2-stage cooling can be done by having one unit with two compressors, one small and one large. The small one is typically capable of putting out about 50% the capacity of the larger one. The second way to have 2-stage cooling is to have a single scroll unloading compressor. This compressor can unload its capacity down to about 66% of maximum capacity. Both these methods of getting 2-stage cooling allow the unit to run at a lower stage when the high stage is not needed. By doing this, energy is saved.2-stage heating has the same principle as 2-stage cooling. It allows the unit to adjust itself based on the amount of heating that is necessary. 2-stage heating is a good way to save on heating costs.A heat pump system would have two different sized compressors, a small and a large one. The compressor that is used at a given time would depend upon the need. If only a small amount of heating is necessary, the smaller compressor would be used to save energy. The large compressor would only be used when a large amount of heating was needed.
A gas furnace that is 2-stage has a modulating gas valve that regulates gas flow depending upon the need.
At what temperature should I set my thermostat?
My system doesn’t work well in a couple of rooms, what should I do?
Is Freon as a refrigerant being discontinued?
My air conditioner is very loud when I entertain outside, what can I do?
Can carbon monoxide build up in my home?
What if I smell gas?
Propane (LP) gas: You have this type if your gas comes from a tank located outside close to your house. Propane is stored as a liquid under pressure in tanks and cylinders. In most residential applications, propane is used as a vapor. When liquid propane changes into a gas vapor, it expands in volume. This means that even a small leak of liquid propane can result in a much larger quantity of propane vapor, which can be especially dangerous in a confined space. A chemical odorant has been added to propane to give it a distinct smell. Learn to identify this odor. Propane gas is heavier than air, so it will sink to the floor and spread. To check for the presence of propane, carefully smell all over a room, especially in low spots.If you smell propane (LP) gas:
- Exit your home immediately.
- Propane gas can ignite easily. Do not light a match, start an engine, use a cell phone, or do anything that may create a spark.
- From a safe area, contact your propane supplier and call 911.
- If you are able, shut the propane gas supply off at the tank.
- Stay away from your home until you’ve been told that it is safe to return.
Natural gas: You have this type if you have a gas meter and pay a natural gas supplier or utility. A chemical odorant has been added to natural gas to give it a distinct smell. Learn to identify this odor.
If you smell natural gas:
- Exit your home immediately.
- Do not light a match, start an engine, use a cell phone, or do anything that may create a spark.
- From a safe area, contact your gas company or call 911.
- If you are able, turn the gas off at the meter.
- Stay away from your home until you’ve been told that it is safe to return.