Proper care and maintenance should be considered on a regular basis. More thorough checks should be done twice a year, preferably in the spring and fall, and performed by a qualified technician. It can help improve and sustain efficiency and reduce bills.
Here are some of the best ways to maintain your HVAC system:
Also, don’t forget to replace the batteries in your carbon monoxide (CO) detector. HVAC systems that use natural gas or oil can emit CO and other harmful chemicals. Maintaining the CO detector will protect you should there ever be a gas leak.
If you’re looking for additional savings:
But you should always rely on a professional to:
A maintenance plan, such as NexGen’s X Protection Plan, ensures you benefit from routine service. It also reduces the likelihood of future equipment issues, failures, and emergencies. With a regular maintenance plan, customers usually see the following benefits:
If you’ve begun to experience problems with your HVAC system over time, you are not alone. Heating and cooling systems are complex and endure a great deal of stress. But you can prevent excessive wear or damage by identifying common problems such as:
Other issues can occur as well. If an outside vent is spitting out water, it is likely clogged. Unscrew the vent if you can and replace it, or unclog it to let air from the radiator escape. If a hot water radiator won’t heat up, your heaters won’t work either. Using a screwdriver, open the bleed valve, making sure a bucket is underneath to collect the water. Once the air bleeds out, the radiator should work.
Also, if you notice an increase in allergies, it may be due to mold, mildew, or dust in your HVAC ducts. Cleaning ductwork can reduce your symptoms. Allergens can also cause respiratory problems and extreme fatigue, so it’s important to address indoor air quality issues. If dry air is a problem, install a humidifier.
There will come a time when you’re faced with this decision. Oftentimes, you can choose to repair your HVAC system, but an HVAC contractor may ultimately suggest replacing it. System failure is one situation in which replacing it with something newer and more efficient is best. If the unit works too hard to provide the temperature you need, it can break down, not to mention draw excessive power while running.
Uneven temperatures in your home aren’t just inconvenient. They mean your heating/cooling system isn’t working the way it should. When one room is hotter or colder than another, call a specialist to check the system. Perhaps there’s a minor issue they can fix. But if your HVAC system is failing, replacing it is likely the best long-term option.
If there is excessive dust in the air, despite completing regular maintenance such as replacing filters, the system may no longer be able to properly ventilate indoor air. Other serious issues include squealing and grinding noises, while a heating unit that emits odors may have a burnt wire or be leaking toxic fumes. If room temperatures are uneven, immediately seek the advice of an HVAC specialist.
In general, the question of repair vs. replacement can be addressed by considering:
Maintenance will help your HVAC system last longer. However, one day there will be a decision to repair or replace it. Considering the factors above will help make a choice that can have positive impacts on your wallet, and comfort, for years to come.
Smart home technology isn’t limited to lights you can turn on from the couch or TVs that let you browse the internet. Personal assistants that let you listen to music or play games are all the rage. But did you know smart HVAC systemscan provide real functional value for your home and help you save money? If you have central air conditioning and heating, you can benefit from the following capabilities of a Smart HVAC System:
These aren’t the only smart components available. There are smart ceiling fans, some that can sense room occupancy and that combine with smart personal assistants and smartphones. Plus, there are several smart home assistants on the market, including Amazon Echo, Google Assistant, and others that pair well with smart HVAC systems.
In addition to ratings, the certification of an HVAC system can tell you a lot about it. In general, you want to purchase heating and cooling equipment that is:
With HVAC ratings and certifications in mind, and using the insights provided throughout this primer, a step by step approach to selecting the right system is possible. Here is an effective process for finding a system properly rated and sized for your home.
Have Your Ductwork Inspected. For the most thorough inspection, hire a professional contractor. A new HVAC system won’t perform at peak efficiency if there are leaks and poorly sealed joints in the ductwork. Air leakage can reduce efficiency by 30%. A contractor can fix any breaks, insulate ducts, and clean dust and debris to ensure your new system is as efficient and reliable as possible.
Find a Furnace. Older heating systems are inefficient. An old furnace might have an AFUE of just 56%, while a new one may be 98.5%. When choosing a furnace, pay close attention to the type of air handler. There are single-stage air handlers, but these only have one speed setting, wasting energy to heat your home. Two-stage air handlers let you save energy on a low setting and operate on high when needed, while variable speed (multi-stage) air handlers can run at different speeds to adjust indoor temperature.
Choose an Air Conditioner: Select a unit that has a SEER rating of at least 16. Air conditioners with high SEER numbers can save as much as 40% on your energy bill. The best models have variable-speed scroll compressors, which are quieter, and an all-aluminum evaporator coil that’s more resistant to corrosion and leaks than copper and steel coils. A high-performance AC provides reliable cooling throughout your home and air filtration to improve indoor air quality.
When selecting any HVAC unit, compare all ratings, including AFUE, SEER, and HSPF.
Calculate the Total Cost: In addition to the initial purchase and installation cost, consider the long-term costs of the system as well. These include utility costs and the estimated lifespan of the system. Also factor in maintenance and repair needs. Investing in a high-efficiency system will cost more up-front. However, it can save you in the long run; and the higher the quality of the equipment, the less you’re likely to spend on repairs.
Research HVAC Contractors: Ask family members, friends, and neighbors if they know a reputable contractor, or research HVAC company websites and reviews online. Finding an experienced and qualified contractor is important. If the HVAC system is the wrong size or installed incorrectly, it can waste a lot of energy. A qualified contractor has the tools to calculate the right sized equipment and ensure it runs as efficiently as it was designed to.
For help selecting and installing your home HVAC system, contact NexGen. We offer same-day installation of air conditioning units and heating systems. For top-of-the-line maintenance and service, join our X Protection Plan at a low monthly cost. Our company is #1 rated for home services in Southern California. For professional advice by a certified HVAC professional, a thorough in-home inspection and assessment, and free estimate, call 888-966-9045 or book your appointment online. We are ready to serve all your indoor heating and cooling needs.