Are you looking for some answers to your heating and cooling questions?
Buying a new air conditioner, heat pump or gas furnace is not something you are going to have to do often. In fact, air conditioners and heat pumps last around 15 years, while a gas furnace may last up to 20 years! During that time, there are many technological advancements, regulation changes, etc.
That’s why so many questions arise when replacement time does roll around. Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked HVAC questions.
Who can I call to work on my heating and cooling equipment?
When it comes to an air conditioner, gas furnace, heat pump, or any other type of HVAC system, you should ALWAYS call a professional for service, maintenance or installation. Heating and air conditioning equipment requires training, skill and knowledge in order to properly service. It isn’t ajob for the average “Mr. Fix-It.”
Who is responsible for registering my unit?
Most heating and air conditioning manufacturers require product registration for full warranty coverage. A lot of the times, a contractor will register your unit for you. But, ultimately it is up to you to make sure your system is registered. Make sure you ask your contractor whether you are responsible for registering your new HVAC system.
I am looking for technical support, who should I call?
If you think something is wrong with your system, and you are tempted to fix it yourself…stop right there! Heating and air conditioning equipment isn’t something that just anyone can fix. They are complicated pieces of equipment that require skill in order to repair and service. Drop the wrench, pick up the phone and call your local contractor.
Do companies sell HVAC parts directly to homeowners?
While policies may differ from manufacturer to manufacturer, Maytag HVAC does not supply parts directly to homeowners.
How much is an air conditioner?
Each air conditioner installation is unique. Therefore, there is no way to give an accurate price for your specific cooling system needs. A lot will depend on the state of your current central air system, which system you choose, how efficient the unit is, etc. To get an accurate picture of the price of your new air conditioner, contact your local heating and air conditioning contractor.
Do I need preventative maintenance?
Preventative maintenance is crucial for continued optimal HVAC performance. It is a good idea to schedule preventative maintenance twice a year – once before the cooling season and again before the heating season. Maintenance may even be a part of your warranty agreement!
Do you have any other HVAC questions?
Like this post? Share it!
How old is your air conditioner?
There comes a time in the life of an air conditioner when it is no longer cost-effective to continue making repairs. Although a new system can be expensive, you could be paying more to cool your home monthly with an old air conditioner, AND you could wind up spending more money fixing a system that is just going to break down sooner rather than later.
If your air conditioner meets one or more of the following criteria, it may be time to replace it instead of making a repair.
- Your air conditioner is over 10 years old.
- It is a costly repair involving a major component of the unit.
- Your system needs to be charged with R-22 refrigerant.
- Your air conditioner is under 13 SEER.
- You have made multiple repairs recently.
- You’re not planning on moving anytime soon.
- The cost of repair is more than half the cost of a new system.
Plus, there are so many benefits to investing in a new air conditioner. New air conditioners are more efficient and provide greater home comfort than air conditioners produced 10 years ago. In fact, even a standard-efficiency replacement can be a significant upgrade from an older unit.
Before you decide to replace your air conditioner, make sure you consult a local HVAC contractor. They will be able to give you more advice on whether to repair or replace your air conditioner.
Are you thinking of investing in a new air conditioner?
Like this post? Share it!
Are you paying attention to how you’re operating your air conditioner?
Buying a new air conditioner is an investment. If you buy high-efficiency equipment, you are investing in years of money-saving performance. You are also investing in your home comfort. Maximizing that investment is crucial.
Do you want to maximize the lifespan of your unit? There are a few things that you should stop doing. These things can harm your air conditioner, maximize lifespan, reduce efficiency and diminish home comfort.
STOP…forgetting to change your furnace filter.
A dirty filter restricts airflow. This means that your air conditioner has to work harder to cool your home – reducing efficiency and decreasing lifespan.
STOP…putting off annual preventative maintenance.
We are already well into the cooling season, so the time for preventative maintenance this year has passed. However, pencil in a reminder for next year. Many manufacturers actually require preventative maintenance for full warranty coverage.
STOP…planting things too close to your unit.
Your outdoor air conditioning component needs “room to breathe” so to speak. When you plant too close to your air conditioner, it can restrict airflow. Plus, plants may GROW INTO your air conditioner, damaging important components.
STOP…constantly adjusting your non-programmable thermostat.
Programmable thermostats are nifty because they do the thinking/adjustments for you. If you are constantly adjusting your non-programmable thermostat, your unit could be going through frequent on/off cycles – consuming more energy and reducing system lifespan.
STOP…drastically dropping the temperature to cool your home more quickly.
Did you know that just because your thermostat is set at a lower temperature, ti does not mean your home is going to get cooler more quickly? Your air conditioner will simply run longer. If it feels like your home is never at the right temperature, you may want to talk to your contractor about zoning or making sure your air conditioner is the correct size for your home.
STOP…forgetting to schedule a cleaning appointment for your air conditioner and ductwork.
Like a dirty furnace filter or plants too close to your air conditioner, dirt and grime around your unit and in your ductowork can restrict airflow – reducing efficiency and decreasing system life. Plus, cleaning your air distribution system is important for indoor air quality.
Are you guilty of any of the above? If you need some more cooling system advice, turn to your local contractor.
Like this post? Share it!
Are you worried about high summer utility bills?
Nobody likes receiving a high electric bill. Unfortunately, electric bills tend to soar during the summer due to increased cooling demand. Did you know that cooling your home can make up to 60% of your utility bills expenses during the summer?? That’s a significant chunk of change.
Luckily, there are some things you can do to lessen the impact the cooling season has on your wallet. Small adjustments can make a big difference when it comes to your electric bill.
Here are some things you may be doing around your home that could raise utility bills. Quit doing these things and you could potentially save money this summer.
Do you have a non-programmable thermostat? Make sure after you set up the temperature you don’t mess with it. Making constant adjustments to your non-programmable thermostat can raise utility bills. Plus, a thermostat set at a lower temperature WON’T actually cool your home more quickly – it will just make your air conditioner run longer.
In or out? Constantly opening and closing exterior doors can let your cool, conditioned air escape your home. Make sure that you and your family aren’t constantly going in and out of the house.
And speaking of the outside air… It may be tempting to open the windows and doors, but it is not a good idea. Not only does it let unfiltered air into your home, but it also results in costly air leaks. Remember, it’s not your job to cool the neighborhood.
When was the last time you changed your furnace filter? A dirty furnace filter lowers indoor air quality and can restrict airflow. When airflow is restricted, your air conditioner is going to have to work harder to keep your home cool – raising utility bills and lowering home comfort. An overworked air conditioner will also have a shorter lifespan than the same air conditioner operating at optimal performance levels.
Not using a room? DO NOT close the registers or vents in that room. Although it seems like it makes sense to shut off access to rooms that do not need conditioned air, this can actually harm your air conditioner and result in higher bills. If you are looking for customized comfort control, a zoning system is the better option. Remember, your air conditioner and ductwork are sized to heat or cool a certain amount of space. When you mess with those calculations, you mess with performance.
Have you scheduled preventative maintenance? As summer draws nearer and nearer, it is more important than ever to make sure you have scheduled preventative maintenance for your air conditioning system. Your contractor will make sure that your air conditioner is working at peak performance levels, AND they can catch any minor issues before they become big problems.
Are you ready to tackle the summer heat? Are there any other things you do during the summer to lower utility bills?
Like this post? Share it!
Do you know what affects airflow?
As we head into the hotter months, it’s important to keep things in mind that can help you get the most out of your air conditioner in the most efficient way possible. There’s nothing worse than getting a massive utility bill during the summer.
A major component of efficiency and performance is airflow. And, there are a lot of different things that can affect airflow. Here are some things to keep in mind.
Don’t close registers and vents.
Your HVAC system is designed to provide warm or cool air to a designated amount of space. That’s why it is so important for your contractor to properly size your equipment. Closing registers and vents affects the amount of space your unit is conditioning. The same principle applies to doors. Keep doors open, even when there isn’t someone in the room. If you want customized airflow, talk to your contractor about a zoning system.
Aim grass clippings away from your air conditioner or heat pump.
It’s grass cutting season! While you’re taking the time to make your lawn look trimmed and healthy, make sure you keep your HVAC system in mind. Grass clippings can get stuck on the exterior of your system and block airflow.
Plant far enough from your air conditioner or heat pump.
You want to make sure that your outdoor equipment has adequate room to pull air from the outdoors. It is a good idea to plant at least two feet away from your condenser.
Have a contractor check your ductwork once a year.
Your ductwork can become scary without proper attention. You never know what may be hiding in your ducts. A good duct cleaning is not just a good idea to improve airflow, it is also a good way to find out if there are any unseen problems with your home – like rodents, mold or other pests.
Regularly change your furnace filter.
Disposable filters need to be replaced at the very least once per season. It is actually a better idea to change them more frequently than that. For example, households with pets may want to consider changing the furnace filter once a month.
Clean your permanent filter frequently.
Whether temporary or permanent, your system needs a clean filter for proper airflow. Make sure you follow proper cleaning procedures for your permanent filter. Make sure you take it outside to clean it off. You don’t want to reintroduce the particles that the filter took out of your indoor air back into it!
Ductwork design is important.
There is a lot of work that goes into installing new HVAC equipment – especially if a new duct system must be installed as well. Make sure your contractor takes the time to properly design your duct system. This can be the difference between having a comfortable home and having a home that experiences uneven temperatures.
Have a contractor come out and clean your condenser.
It’s never too late to have your contractor come out and clean your air conditioner before the peak cooling season. A lot of gunk can accumulate on your air conditioner – restricting airflow and forcing your air conditioner to work harder to draw air in.
Any maintenance, repair or installation starts with the search for a qualified local contractor. Do some research and find the professional in your area that is going to get the job done right the first time.
Do you do these things to assure proper airflow? What is something you are going to start doing?
Like this post? Share it!
Is your air conditioner ready to tackle the summer heat?
May is here and temperatures are warming up! Summer will be here before you know it. Have you taken the time to schedule your preventative maintenance appointment yet?
Preventative maintenance is the best way to make sure your air conditioner is prepared for the summer heat. Spring is considered an off-season for contractors – they are not nearly as busy as they are during the summer. This makes it the perfect time to have your cooling equipment inspected. If you were to need a repair during the summer, you could be stuck for days or WEEKS without your air conditioner. Don’t put yourself in that situation.
Here are some things you should keep in mind while preparing for your preventative maintenance appointment.
Take some time to find the right contractor. Like installations, finding a quality contractor is important for maintenance. A contractor who takes pride in their work will do things right, and do them right the first time. They will be able to catch any minor issues before they turn into big problems.
Clear the way. Do you have anything blocking your heating and cooling equipment? Make sure you move it out of the way. This will save the contractor time and save you money.
Put pets up. It’s important to make sure your pets are in a safe place. Even if Fido is friendly, you never know how a contractor may feel about pets. Plus, you don’t want them interfering with your contractor’s work.
Be prepared. Know where to direct your contractor when they arrive at your home. Is your furnace or air handler in the attic, basement, or in a closet? Knowing where your equipment is located can help save time.
Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! Make sure you schedule your spring clean and check soon!
Like this post? Share it!
Are you ready to start ticking things off your spring cleaning to-do list?
It’s time to break out the vacuums and dusters! While nobody may like spring cleaning, it is a great idea to do it every year to get rid of the dust and grime that has accumulated over a long winter spent indoors. Not only is spring cleaning good for aesthetic reasons (after all, who likes looking at dust day in and day out), but it is good for your indoor air as well. It helps you breathe easier, can increase home comfort AND may even make your filter last a bit longer.
Here are some things you should keep in mind while getting rid of the dust bunnies this spring.
Air out your home, but not for too long. The air in your home can become stagnant during the winter. Spring is a good time to open the windows and let in a little fresh air. BUT, exercise caution. Remember, the air coming through your windows is unfiltered. This means all sorts of outdoor pollutants and allergens may be coming into your home unfiltered.
Vacuum your carpets. It’s shocking just how many particles can become trapped in your carpets. It’s a good idea to vacuum your carpets regularly, and you may even consider a deep clean during the spring.
Keep the cleaners you use in mind. The chemicals in many household cleaners can lower the quality of your indoor air. This goes for air fresheners as well. Consider other less harmful cleaners, like homemade alternatives make from vinegar or baking soda.
Clean out registers and vents. You can often get to your registers and vents quiet easily. However, an even better idea than just cleaning the areas you can access is to call a contractor and have them clean your entire air distribution network. This can improve indoor air quality and may alert you to any unseen problems your home may have fallen victim to (like bugs or rodents).
Change your furnace filter. While you’re in the cleaning mood, make sure to give your furnace filter a look. A dirty furnace filter can reduce airflow and reduce efficiency. Plus, it could be ineffective at filtering out harmful particles in your indoor air.
Make sure to schedule preventative maintenance. While it is not exactly cleaning related, scheduling a spring maintenance appointment with a local contractor is a must-add to your spring to-do list. Preventative maintenance can alert you to any potential problems AND can help your cooling system run as efficiently as possible during the cooling season.
Still have to schedule your spring preventative maintenance appointment? Make sure you take the time to find the right local contractor for the job.
Like this post? Share it!
Do you want to know what your contractor does during spring preventative HVAC maintenance?
Spring HVAC preventative maintenance is the best thing you can do for your HVAC system…and your wallet! During the summer, your air conditioner works hard to make sure your home is at just the right temperature. On hotter days, this can make the air conditioner work harder, which translates to a higher electricity bill. In fact, heating and air conditioning equipment makes up more than HALF of your monthly utility bill spending.
Spring preventative maintenance does a couple of things for your cooling equipment.
- Helps you avoid emergency “no cool” calls during the peak cooling season.
- Helps your unit run as efficiently as possible, saving you money during the peak cooling season.
Here are a few things that go on during a spring preventative maintenance appointment.
- Contractors inspect the indoor coil for cleanliness. He will clean the coil if necessary.
- While inside, the contractor will inspect the furnace or air handler blower assembly for proper operation and cleanliness.
- Your contractor will inspect all electrical connections.
- They will check the operation of the compressor and outdoor fan motor.
- Lastly, they will check the system’s refrigerant level. Keep in mind, if the refrigerant level is low, your contractor should check for a leak, NOT just replace the refrigerant. If it is determined that there is a leak, your contractor will either fix the leak or replace the component that is leaking.
Keep in mind, there are also things you can do to help your air conditioner run as efficiently as possible during the summer, like changing your furnace filter. Under some conditions, it is advisable to change your furnace filter as frequently as once a month! Make sure you ask your local contractor for a recommendation.
Like this post? Share it!
Do you know the best way to run your cooling equipment?
Let’s face it…no one likes to spend money on bills. Unfortunately, one of the biggest contributors to your monthly utility bill expenses is your heating and cooling equipment. Nowadays, it’s hard to imagine getting through a hot summer without the comfort provided by an indoor air conditioner. So, turning your equipment off doesn’t feel like an option.
There are two big things you can attempt to control during the cooling season – airflow and on/off cycles. Restricted airflow and frequent on/off cycles can raise your utility bills. Here are some best practices to ensure you are cooling your home effectively.
Avoid on/off cycles.
- Invest in a programmable thermostat for customized comfort.
- If you have a non-programmable thermostat, keep it at one temperature.
- Don’t switch between heating and cooling mode too frequently. This is important to remember during the spring when temperatures can vary day to day.
Ensure proper airflow.
- Plant things at least two feet away from your condenser.
- Regularly change your furnace filter.
- Schedule a duct cleaning appointment.
- Keep all vents and registers open at all times.
Of course, none of these adjustments are going to make much of an impact if your cooling equipment isn’t working properly. If you don’t think your cooling system is working at peak performance levels, make sure to get in touch with a local contractor. In fact, spring is the perfect time for preventative air conditioner maintenance. Don’t forget to schedule your appointment!
Like this post? Share it!
Are you prepared for the warmer weather?
Happy first week of spring, all! Has warmer weather moved into your area? In the Midwest, the first day of spring brought the first wave of summer for some parts – temperatures nearing 90F! Is your air conditioner ready to tackle the heat?
What is your favorite part of spring? Ours? Spring preventative air conditioner maintenance, of course!
Why is that? Well, it is the best way to get your air conditioner in peak condition for cooling season. During a preventative maintenance appointment, your contractor can catch any minor issues with your cooling equipment that may cause big problems for you during the cooling season. There is nothing worse than a “no cool” call in the middle of July!
Also, remember with spring comes allergies! Those beautiful flowers blooming around you are great to look at, but can wreck havoc on your health. One of the best defenses against springtime allergies is your air filter. Add “change the furnace filter” to your spring cleaning to-do list. This way you can breathe easier.
Are you ready to schedule spring preventative maintenance? Make sure you do some research and find a reputable local heating and cooling contractor. They will be able to perform maintenance AND set you up with IAQ products that can help reduce allergens in your home.
Have you scheduled preventative maintenance yet?