Save Money with an HVAC Efficiency Analysis

Is your HVAC system working efficiently or could it perform better? Even if you are not unhappy with your HVAC system, it may not be performing as well as it could. An efficiency analysis can check several factors to determine how well your HVAC system is functioning overall and give options on ways it can be improved. Here are some of the factors that can be checked during an efficiency analysis on your HVAC system.

Air Quality

One area of concern with your HVAC system is how well it is managing your air quality. Are the filters you are using removing enough contaminants from the air? What is the humidity level in your home? Testing your air quality can help determine whether a different type of filter or moisture control unit could be beneficial.

Energy Audit

During an HVAC efficiency analysis, an energy audit is performed to determine whether your HVAC system is maximizing its energy use. This includes evaluating the equipment function and your actual energy use, looking for options to improve the amount of energy used to provide adequate climate control.

Comfortable Climate Control

An efficiency analysis can help identify issues that may affect comfort and energy use. Air duct leaks, outdated therostats or other issues can impact the comfort levels in different areas in your home as well as how much energy you use for heating and cooling.

Having an HVAC efficiency analysis performed every few years can help you keep your energy costs low and improve the comfort and air quality in your home. Contact your local HVAC company that offers an efficiency analysis service to find out if you could save money with some changes to your heating or cooling system.

Posted on behalf of:
Western Aire Heating & Cooling
Marietta, GA 30066
(770) 505-7426

Do You Need a Carbon Monoxide Detector?

Every year, usually during the winter months, you hear of tragic deaths due to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. This deadly, yet odorless and colorless gas, can quickly cause bodily harm and death when people are exposed to it in enclosed areas. Since you cannot see, taste or smell it, a carbon monoxide detector is the best way to alert you if it is present in your home. If you don’t have a detector, you may want to get one installed.

Common Sources of Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide does not just appear; it must be from a source. This gas is a bi-product of incomplete burning carbon-based fuels, such as coal, natural gas, wood, propane and oil. Combustion engines in vehicles produce CO, as can appliances and furnaces that use carbon-based fuel for heat or energy. When the proper ventilation is not present, the gas can fill your car or home, putting your health at risk.

CO does not take long to endanger your health. High doses of CO in an enclosed area can cause you to become unconscious within minutes and suffocate you as it deprives your brain of oxygen. Even those that survive CO poisoning can have serious brain damage and other health effects.

Homes that use gas heat or appliances should always have a CO detector, as well as homes that use propane, oil or wood. Homes that only use electricity for power or heat are less prone to CO poisoning, but if a propane or oil heater is used when the electricity is out, there are risks for poisoning. To be safe, all homes should have a CO detector installed. The next time you schedule your annual HVAC service, ask if they can provide CO testing for your home and install a detector to keep you and your family safe.

Posted on behalf of:
Western Aire Heating & Cooling
Marietta, GA 30066
(770) 505-7426

Does Your AC Have Dirty Coils?

There are a few things that can make your air conditioner run poorly and less efficiently. One of them is dirty condenser or evaporator coils. One maintenance item that you need to stay abreast of with your air conditioner is keeping coils free of dirt and debris. This can make a big difference in the performance and efficiency, saving your money off energy bills and repair costs.

The condenser coil of your A/C unit is one of the most important components. The coils are what cool the hot air. The hot air travels through the coils and is cooled by refrigerant, but it is necessary for the hot air to be released. The cleaner the coils, the more efficiently the unit can cool the air. If the coils are dirty, the fan and rest of the unit must work harder to cool the air. This uses more energy and puts more wear on your A/C unit. Dirty coils can reduce efficiency by up to 30% and detract from the life span of your unit, costing you more money monthly and premature replacement.

Air quality plays a big part in how quickly your coils will become dirty. In desert areas, dust storms cause big issues with air conditioning units. In metropolitan areas, pollution and other factors can create dirt and residue on coils. You can clean some dust and debris off your vents and coils yourself. Use low-pressure canned air to remove dust from condenser and evaporator coils, as well as the vents.

However, to ensure your coils are completely cleaned inside and out, get them cleaned by a professional. This is usually included with most A/C tune-ups, which is another good reason to have a tune-up at least once a year.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
5950 Shiloh Road East
Alpharetta, GA 30005
(770) 475-9555

Mold in the HVAC: What to Do?

Mold in the HVAC system is a common complaint, and one that is easy to understand. Why? Because mold is present in all buildings and all it needs to proliferate is moisture and food. You can’t eradicate mold completely, but there are some steps you can take to minimize chances that it won’t get completely out of hand. 

Preventive measures include checking the HVAC system for proper condensate drainage and that drip pans and condensate lines are not plugged. See that blowers, air-handlers and plenums are free of moisture. Your HVAC contractor should take of these items during your routine residential HVAC maintenance service call. 

Moisture can build up in areas you can’t see and mold doesn’t take long (as little as 48 hours) to start flourishing. So, despite your best efforts you can still end up with a mold problem. If that happens here are some measures to take to bring the situation back under control. First, the HVAC system needs to be turned off and anyone working on the cleanup should be wearing at least an N-95 respirator. 

  • Replace porous materials – This includes any insulation or filters that have gotten wet. Bag wet materials in 6 mil. or thicker plastic and discard. Remove any standing water with a wet-vac.
  • Clean non-porous surfaces – Use detergent and water to to clean vents, ducts and registers.
  • Vacuum – Even dead mold spores, can make people sick, so that material must be removed after cleaning. Vacuuming with hepa filtration is the best method. 

You can do these jobs yourself if the system is small and everything you need to clean is easy to get to, but you may need to call in professional assistance. More and more HVAC companies are hiring or training personnel to handle what can be a complex problem. Control the mold; don’t allow the mold to control you.