Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) is one of the most important components of a home. But homeowners often don’t realize that HVAC is the driving force in delivering home comfort and clean air. We inform customers with the knowledge they need to prepare their home and their family for a comfortable, healthy, and money-saving year.
HEATING & AIR CONDITIONING FAQ's
Determining whether you should replace or repair your furnace or air conditioning will depend on many factors. The age, maintenance and service history, and severity of the problem affecting your HVAC system will all play a part in this decision. Talk to your HVAC technician about your repair and replacement options—oftentimes, replacement is best if your unit is more than ten years old or requires repairs that cost more than half the total of a new AC unit or furnace.
While it is true that you can perform some HVAC maintenance tasks yourself, many services should only be completed by a professional. Your HVAC technician is trained in the proper disassembly, cleaning and reassembly of your furnace and air conditioning to prevent inadvertent damage. Improperly-maintained systems can even pose an electrical hazard, making professional HVAC maintenance important for safety as well as convenience. Our HVAC maintenance plans are designed to meet your system’s needs and help you save money in both the short and long term.
Your thermostat is a central component of your HVAC system. If your home still employs a manual thermostat, it’s a good idea to upgrade to a more modern system, especially during furnace or AC replacement. Digital programmable thermostats allow you to create programs that reduce strain on your furnace, heat pump, or air conditioning while you’re not home for improved performance and energy savings. A smart thermostat takes this concept one step further, offering learning capabilities to independently develop the best programs for your schedule and providing wireless access to your HVAC system even while you’re not at home.
Although it may seem unexpected, a furnace or air conditioner breakdown rarely occurs without some kind of warning sign. Scheduling regular AC and furnace maintenance and contacting your HVAC service at the first sign of a change in performance are the best ways to prevent a complete shutdown of your system that interrupts your daily schedule and affects your comfort.
- Make sure you have set your thermostat and temperature to the proper setting.
- Check your circuit panel. Be sure to know which breaker(s) or fuse(s) control your air conditioning and heating equipment. Occasionally resetting a breaker that my have inadvertently been turned off can get your system up and running.
- Check or change your air filter. A dirty filter will/can cause various problems.
- When calling for service, you need to be able to describe what your air conditioning and heating system is (or not) doing. Is there air coming from the registers? Do you hear any unusual noises? Is the fan operating when set to the fan “on” position?
- Ask your comfort consultant if an Energy Savings Agreement could have prevented this problem.
It will depend on the filter system you have and the traffic in the home or business. Most 1″ thick filters should be replaced every 30 to 45 days. The 5″ thick filters should last 6 months. If you have a special system electronic, UV light etc., then the manufacturer should have some recommendations for proper maintenance.
Ask our comfort consultant to review your filtration for adequacy. We offer several options that will greatly improve your overall indoor air quality.
If you are unable to locate your filter, contact our office to schedule an appointment for our comfort consultant to help locate your filter and evaluate the current condition of your system.
Manufacturers recommend having your system checked at least once a year if not twice; once prior to winter heating months and once prior to summer cooling months. Having your system routinely checked and serviced can solve many problems before they become emergencies.
Our Energy Savings Agreements (ESA) are designed to improve equipment reliability, energy efficiency and best of all, peace of mind. See the section “ESA” of this website for details.
With regular recommended maintenance:
- Average life of a heat pump is approximately 4-7 years
- Average life of an air conditioner is approximately 5-10 years
- Average life of a gas furnace or air handler is approximately 15-18 years
We do not advise homeowners to choose a home comfort system based on the refrigerant that they use. The Clean Air Act does not allow ANY refrigerant to be vented into the atmosphere. They must be reclaimed, recycled, and reused.
Units using the current refrigerant, R-22, will always be serviced with R-22. They will not need to change to a different refrigerant. The scheduled phase out of R-22 in 2010 allows for plenty of refrigerant to be available to service all cooling units and heat pumps that use R-22 for the life of the equipment.
We do offer systems by several manufactures that use the newer R-410A refrigerant. As reliability and pricing improve,an increase in their uses.
As the HVAC industry gradually transitions to a new refrigerant, we encourage homeowners to maintain their focus on purchasing energy efficient home comfort products that best meet their comfort needs.
Purchasing higher efficiency heating and cooling systems and better sealing and insulating our homes will not only improve comfort and reduce energy costs, but also improve our environment.