Factors That May Affect HVAC Replacement Estimates

Whether you’re replacing  an air conditioner that’s past its service life or upgrading the furnace in your home, you must compare contractor estimates to find the one that provides the most savings. Expect these to vary, however. Today the HVAC service pros of Schmitt Heating & Air Conditioning take a look at the various factors that may affect replacement estimates.

Contractor Experience

Contractors use their experience and expertise when making HVAC replacement estimates. Expect high-end yet reputable HVAC companies to give you a higher bid since they’re more likely to have more equipment and overhead. Be aware that those who offer a lower bid may not have the proper insurance or a full understanding of local policies or applicable incentives. 

HVAC Unit Type & Features

Estimates also vary depending on the heating and air conditioning units being offered. Trusted HVAC service installers will tell you about the best features for your home’s system. The unit’s brand, size, hardware and level of efficiency will impact the total installation cost. Units from well-known manufacturers may cost you more upfront, but they tend to have longer lifespans, better warranties and smarter built-in features.

Warranties

Inclusions in HVAC warranties also vary in many estimates. The manufacturer warranties that most installers offer provide protection against faulty equipment. Additional guarantees for the total HVAC installation may also be provided in other estimates.

 

Your Home’s Size & Amount of Insulation

The size of your home and how well it’s insulated play an important role in your new HVAC system’s ability to cool and heat your home with optimal efficiency. For instance, a 2,500-square-foot home will require much larger equipment than a smaller home. A unit with far less capacity may be needed if your home has energy-efficient windows and no cracks through which air can enter and escape.

Call Schmitt Heating & Air Conditioning for All Your HVAC Needs

For all your HVAC needs, turn to Schmitt Heating & Air Conditioning. We offer a wide range of services, including heating and AC repair, replacement and maintenance. Give us a call at (415) 689-7849 or fill out our contact form to request an estimate or schedule an appointment. We serve residents of San Francisco and the surrounding communities.

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How to Add or Replace Heating and Cooling Systems in Old Houses

Upgrading heating and cooling systems in an old house can be a challenge because these buildings aren’t designed to accommodate modern HVAC systems. In this blog, local HVAC company Schmitt shares an overview of the best ways to heat and cool old houses.

How to Eliminate Hot and Cold Spots in Your Home

Uneven temperatures in your home can be very frustrating, especially if you don’t know what’s causing them. These shifts in indoor temperature can manifest as hot or cold spots around your home. This blog from HVAC service company Schmitt Heating & Air Conditioning shares the most likely causes of any hot or cold spots, as well as how to eliminate issues with temperature fluctuations.

The Importance of Controlling Relative Indoor Humidity

Humidity control is an essential part of maintaining good indoor air quality. It’s important to note that indoor humidity levels are relative to the season; therefore, they vary throughout the year. In this blog, residential cooling company Schmitt shares an overview of why maintaining proper indoor humidity levels is so important.

How Air Conditioning Plays a Role in Server Rooms

If you’ve ever used a computer before and happen to feel the side of a single CPU after hours of work, you know how quickly it can overheat. Multiply that by a few orders of magnitude and you can understand why high volumes of demand are causing servers to overheat. This overheating can lead to malfunction, equipment damage, and crashes. To avoid all these, proper air conditioning and ventilation is a crucial part of any decently sized server room.

Improving Office Productivity Through Indoor Air Quality

According to a 2015 study conducted by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Center for Health and the Global Environment, SUNY Upstate Medical University, and Syracuse University, poor indoor air quality is linked to poor productivity in the workplace.

A Typical AC Repair Kit

Taking good care of your air conditioning’s air filters is one of the easiest and most effective ways of maintaining your HVAC system. Among other benefits, your system will perform better and will last longer. Here’s a look at why you should prioritize air filter care.

Beautify Your Outdoor Space: How to Conceal Your Outdoor AC Unit

Your HVAC system is an amazing invention. It keeps you cool in summer and warm when the weather starts to cool down. Though your HVAC system is crucial to maintaining home comfort for you and your family, it is not exactly the most attractive piece of machinery. To improve the look of your home’s exterior, try concealing your outdoor HVAC unit. With the DIY tips we have listed below, you can easily camouflage the AC unit without impairing the functionality.

How to Conceal Your Outdoor AC Unit

Concealing your outdoor AC unit doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. Here are our favorite DIY tips for hiding your outdoor HVAC unit:

1. Fence it.

Create an adorable picket fence or lattice to surround your air conditioning unit. Add a statement piece, such as a wooden heart, in the middle of the fence or hang other decorative outdoor decorations from the outer side of the fence so that it becomes a part of your living space.

2. Make Something Grow.

If you have a green thumb, then you would be thrilled with a vertical garden. Essentially, you cover the surrounding area of your air conditioning unit with wooden pallets which can feasibly grow your flowers or greenery inside the crevices. This is a great way to create a tiered planting space for herbs, small florals, or succulents.

3. Hedge it.
Plant hedges or other plants around the air conditioning unit to help keep it concealed. If real plants are not your thing, consider an artificial outdoor boxwood hedge. This option is quite simple, but still gets the job done. When planting hedges or hiding the unit behind potted plants, make sure that all of the shrubbery is at least one foot away from the unit to avoid debris clogging the unit.

4. Create an edifice.
Make a faux brick wall or other barricade between your AC unit and the rest of your backyard. You can make this wall out of a variety of materials, including two-by-fours, pallets, or other types of wood. Again, make sure that there is room for the unit to breathe and be maintained.

Remember: In any case, you need to make sure NOT to attach anything directly to your outdoor condenser unit or block it in so that it cannot be accessed by an HVAC technician. In the event that your air conditioning breaks down or requires inspection, this area will need to be cleared. Make sure your beautification can be moved!

Regardless of how you want to beautify or conceal your air conditioner, there are plenty of options out there to look into. It never hurts to use your creative knowledge, either. You can start something trendsetting! For all of your other HVAC needs, contact us now.

 

 

Debunking Indoor Air Quality Myths

 

It is vital to optimize indoor air quality when operating any heating, cooling or ventilation system. Home and business owners can only accomplish this when they abandon popular IAQ myths.

1. Misconception: Air only becomes seriously polluted outdoors. Truth: It is not uncommon for indoor air to contain more than nine times as many contaminants as outdoor environments.

2. Falsehood: Ozone makes humans healthier. Reality: While it is true that ozone combats some types of bacteria and unwanted chemicals, things that produce ozone also generate unhealthy pollutants.

3. Untruth: A permanently installed gas detector will not significantly improve safety. Actuality: When properly maintained and calibrated, this type of detector truly can alert people to the presence of harmful gases.

4. Misconception: Every gas detector contains the same exact components. Truth: Different models use varying methods to detect gas. It is vital to thoroughly research and compare them.

5. Falsehood: The sensors on these detectors never need replacement. Reality: Sensor lifespans vary by manufacturer and the kinds of gases that they detect. Some last only 12 months; others need replacement after a decade.

6. Untruth: It does not matter where the detector is located. Actuality: People should install gas detectors near potential gas leak sources. Avoid placing them near open windows or vents.

7. Misconception: Detectors consume energy, so they raise power bills. Truth: A gas detector can actually cut electricity usage by controlling ventilation fans. It will only activate them when they are needed.

8. Falsehood: Indoor air quality is not a serious concern. Reality: People often stay indoors for as many as 22 out of 24 hours, so this is the most important type of air quality.

9. Untruth: Eco-friendly buildings benefit the environment but cannot make people healthier. Actuality: Green indoor materials enhance IAQ by releasing fewer gases as they age.

10. Misconception: Indoor air quality improvements remain very hard to achieve. Truth: Although they may prove costly, IAQ enhancements are quite possible with the help of skilled technicians.

By casting aside these IAQ myths and taking steps to improve air quality, building owners can prevent a wide range of health problems.

Please follow this blog to learn more about HVAC systems and energy efficiency.

How Do Air Conditioners Work?

Most people benefit from air conditioning either at home, at work, or both, virtually every day in the summer if they live in a warm climate. But probably most of us, however, have no idea about the process behind this technology that keeps us comfortable.

How do Air Conditioners Work?
The process is actually simple. Hot air flows over cold, low-pressure evaporator coils, allowing refrigerant inside to absorb heat as it changes from a liquid to a gas. The air conditioner, via a compressor, converts the refrigerant gas back to liquid again, which causes unwanted heat. That heat is then dispersed to the outdoors via the condenser coils and a second fan. The gas in the closed system converts back to a liquid, with the process starting all over again. In a central air system, refrigerant chills indoor air, with the resulting gas continually compressed and cooled back to liquid.

The major parts of a central air conditioning system are he evaporator that receives liquid refrigerant, the condenser that facilitates heat transfer, the expansion value to regulate refrigerant flow into the evaporator and the compressor that pressurizes refrigerant.

The cold side of the unit has the evaporator and fan that blows air over chilled coils and through the building. The hot side has the compressor, condenser and a second fan that vents hot air from the compressed refrigerant to the outside. The expansion valve sits between the two sets of coils and regulates the amount of liquid refrigerant that moves into the evaporator. When refrigerant enters the evaporator, it experiences a pressure drop that expands and turns back into a gas.

Variations of this application include window system air conditions that have the coil system on the outside of the unit and, chilled water, sometimes known as chillers and cooling tower air conditioning units used for larger commercial applications. Some of the these larger systems use chilled water that is piped through the building and connected to air handlers to achieve comfortable air, while others used cooling tower technology that creates a stream of cold water running through a heat exchanger to cool hot condenser coils.