Maintaining Your Air Conditioning System

With warm temperatures fast approaching, many homeowners are discovering that their central air conditioners are in need of repair. The first indication of a problem is often when the temperatures are swelling and the house is sweltering. By following a few tips, you can figure out the source of the problem and take steps to fix it.

Checking Your Systems

The first step is to find out if the air conditioning unit is broken or simply in need of a Freon charge. Turn your thermostat down to 65 degrees and go outside to the exterior unit. If the fan is not circulating on the exterior unit, this can indicate a problem with the motor. If the fan is circulating, the next step is to check the interior thermostat.

When you re-enter the home, take note of the temperature in the house before checking thermostat. Is it cooler than the temperature outside? If so check to see if the temperature setting on the thermostat is consistent with the temperature. If the thermostat is reading 80 degrees but it feels cool in the house, the problem is likely a broken thermostat. This is an easy fix for any heating and cooling technician.

Once you have determined that the problem is not with the thermostat or the motor, check for the air coming from the vents. If the air feels warm, it may be that your central air conditioner needs charged. In many cases, air conditioners simply run out of Freon. Getting your Freon charged is an easy fix and is usually included as part of regular maintenance. Your heating and cooling technician can come out and charge up your home and have your air conditioning unit functioning in just minutes.

Keeping Your Air Conditioning Unit Maintained

It is important to keep your central air conditioner maintained on an annual basis. This will keep it running at its peak, allowing you to enjoy the most benefit from your system. In many cases, winter weather can cause your external unit to take a beating. The unit can become clogged with debris, leaves and ice, making it work less efficiently. During your regular maintenance, your technician will check out these components and make sure they are working properly.

Choosing the Best Time of Year for Maintenance

Most people only call for maintenance on their air conditioning system when there is a problem. Unfortunately, this means that technicians are often overloaded with calls during the hottest days of the year, making it difficult for you to get quick service. The best time to set up your maintenance appointment is before problems start.

Schedule your air conditioning maintenance appointment around mid-March, after the worst of winter is over but before the temps start climbing. Of course, this time frame will vary based on your geographic location. Homeowners in the Midwest and Northeast will find that April and May are the best times to schedule maintenance while West Coast residents may need service as early as February.

Keeping your air conditioning unit maintained is key to enjoying your home. Make your maintenance appointment today.

How To Choose The Best Air Conditioning Service In San Francisco

Choosing the best air conditioning service in San Francisco can often seem very daunting, especially if you are unfamiliar with how air conditioning actually works. Like many things in life, though, the process is made much easier by taking a little time to plan and prepare.

The first step anyone should take when looking for an air conditioning contractor in San Francisco is to do some research. Check local press and the internet for companies who are advertising their services. If the company has a website, see what they are prepared to tell customers. Look for testimonials, and see whether customers appear satisfied or not.

While an HVAC contractor is unlikely to put bad reviews on their own website, interested potential customers can usually find reviews and testimonials elsewhere on the web. Local community forums may have discussion pages about tradesmen, and it can be very useful to check them out to see what people are saying. Using social media can also be illuminating. 

A HVAC contractor might well have a page on Facebook or a Twitter account. If they do, see what kind of information they are sharing. If they pose pictures of the work that they have carried out, then that can give a good indication of what they are like. Interact with them, and see what response they offer. This is a good way of seeing if you would trust them in your home.

Another important way of assessing whether a residential heating and air conditioning contractor is good is to speak to friends and neighbours. At some stage, one of them will have had work carried out, and getting an unbiased view of the work that they did can be very useful indeed. Always check about how the pricing and billing was handled, to make sure that the tradesman is honest and above board. There also needs to be some sort of accountability and guarantees built into their service terms, and getting some personal testimony from people you trust is a good way of checking this.

Finally, once you have chosen two or three engineers who can potentially carry out the work, get them to provide quotes. How the company goes about carrying out a quote is often a good way to assess how much you would trust them in your home. Select the best quote for your personally, but always remember that the cheapest is not necessarily the all-round best option.

Choosing an air conditioning engineer is no different, fundamentally, from selecting any other type of tradesman. Careful research and a measure of planning will serve you well. Try and see what several different companies can offer, and then make an informed decision, based upon your personal needs and requirements.

3 Steps to an Energy Efficient Air Conditioning Unit

An energy efficient air conditioning unit is an essential part of your home. It helps to make sure that you receive quality air flow but also help save you the extra expenses of a non-energy efficient unit. An energy efficient unit will help save on the rising costs of energy and the AC will work at its optimum level without over working and over charging you. 

Ducts

You air ducts are an important part of your unit working efficiently. The ducts are what the air travels through to get into your home. They are connected to the air vents and help the air to travel through. When the ducts become dirty or have a superficial snag in them, they begin to leak air or not blow air at all. When this happens it causes your AC unit to work harder and you will be paying out of pocket for the extra costs. You can clean out your air filters by simply vacuuming them out and removing the dust and debris. You should also make sure that there are no holes for the air to escape from the ducts. If air is escaping from the ducts then you are wasting electricity as well.

Tune Up

An energy efficient AC unit will continue to be energy efficient if regular tune ups are performed on it. This can be done by a local HVAC technician. The technician will come out to your home and inspect the unit for you. They will let you know if there is anything wrong with the unit and then will fix it if you want it fixed. Regular maintenance can be performed at home as well by the home owner. Just remember to check for the basics and keep the unit clean to ensure best performance.

Filter

Believe it or not, your air filter has a lot to do with the performance of your AC unit. If you have a clean air filter then you will have a properly working energy efficient system. A dirty filter will cause air to not correctly through the vents and will in return cause the AC unit to work hard than it needs to. When the unit works harder than it needs to; it will run your electric bill up.

An energy efficient air conditioning unit is a perfect item for your home because it will help save you costs on cooling and lower your energy bill. When you properly care for your unit then you will have the best possible performing unit that you can. A well maintained AC unit will save you money on your electric bill and help lower your overall costs to run your AC. Proper maintenance can be performed by you or a technician on the air conditioner. Remember that you should replace your AC if it is more than 10 years old. When units are that old, they are probably running more electricity than they actually need to be running.

For more details call 415-522-0966, or click here.

5 Ways to cool the home naturally

These days, many home owners would like to be environmentally friendly. Many systems and needs of the home can now be adapted to meet eco-friendly standards including cooling the home. There are many tips and tricks that can be used to save energy so that the environment is not directly impacted by your home. These options are easy and can help you have a more comfortable home without affecting your carbon footprint. Below are five ways you can cool your home naturally!

Insulation

A great way to naturally cool the home is with insulation. Insulation can be added to the home to hold the cool air in the home. Eco-friendly options are available and can easily be added to attics and crawl spaces. The addition of insulation will allow for your unit to be able to keep your home cool and allow for a lower utility bill as well as environmentally friendly actions.

Shading

Shading is another way to keep the cool air in your home naturally. Draperies and other shading options can be added to the windows of the home and these additions will allow for the cool air to remain in the home. These items will also allow for the sun to remain out of the home so that the rooms of the home can continue to retain the cool air that is given by the air conditioning unit.

Reflective window film

Another option that involves the windows of the home is reflective film. Reflective film can be purchased at major retailers and placed on the windows to reflect the heat from the sun. If you have windows in your home that face the sun, you can use this film to be able to keep the sun from warming your home during the summer months.

Use appliances less

It is also important that home owners use their appliances less during the hottest parts of the day. to keep the home cool, refrain from running dishwashers, dryers and ovens so that the heat from these units are not placed in the home, making the home warmer than need be.

Landscaping

Home owners should also be aware of the landscaping of the home. When trees are around the home, they can provide natural shading. The trees will be able to cast a shadow on the home which will then allow for your home to remain cool and comfortable. Plant many trees and shrubbery options around the home so that the shadows can allow the home to remain cooler than normal.

Take the time to study your home and determine which options will work best to give you a cool home the most natural way. When we use natural elements and choices to cool our home, we not only have a cooler home in an eco-friendly manner but you also will have money savings each month for your actions. Specialists can also be chosen and used to your advantage to help you find the most energy efficient and eco-friendly ways to cool the home in a natural manner.

For more details call (415) 689-7849 or click here

5 Reasons Homeowners Should Never Delay AC Maintenance

Maintaining your home systems, such as your air conditioning, is important. There are a lot of people out there who want to make sure that they will have a nice, cool home for the summer time. This means that you will have to take extra special care of your machine, especially during the winter period. Maintaining your system will ensure that everything runs smoothly, and that you have a proper level of temperature control in your home. Below are a few reasons as to why you should not delay maintenance.

Inspections

Inspections are an important part of maintenance. You will have to inspect your system at least once a year, and usually this is to be done by a professional. If you are going to inspect the system on a monthly basis, make sure to stick to this. If you miss out on an inspection, then you can end up missing out on repair opportunities. This in turn will cause further problems for your system.

An Uncomfortable Summer

If you do not touch your AC all throughout the winter, then you will need to check it out before the summer time comes. When the heat rises, you want to make sure that you have an efficient system that does not suffer from a breakdown. Throughout the winter, make sure to keep an eye on the system and switch it on from time to time. Doing this will ensure that the system is working so that you do not get any surprises.

Early Repairs

As stated before, if you continue to keep an eye on your machine, then you are going to get repairs in early. Any small problem can be fixed immediately by you either replacing a part, or just calling in a professional.

Cost

This is a big factor and one of the main reasons that you should not delay air conditioning maintenance. A yearly inspection is of course going to cost you, but if repairs need to be made straight after, then you can pay for everything in one go. If you do not have an inspection, then you are going to end up with further problems. These further problems are going to translate into bills and you will therefore end up spending a lot more money than you intended. If you do not want to waste money, then make sure that you keep up with your AC’s maintenance.

Safety

Above all, you need to make sure that your system is safe. By maintaining the system throughout the year, you can ensure that you do not put yourself at unnecessary risk. Your AC has electrical components and if a fuse blows, you could end up endangering yourself. In the interests of safety, it is always a good idea to go for maintenance early.

As you can see, keeping on top of your AC is a good idea. It will ensure that your home is always cool and that you do not have to spend extra to get it fixed.

For more details call (415) 689-7849 or click here

Checklists before your choose your Split AC

Air Conditioners are becoming a basic necessity in almost every house and because of which there is a great demand for almost all types of AC models. Split AC systems have become one of the most convenient options for cooling the homes and offices since it does not involve any messy installation process. These air conditioning systems can cool more efficiently and due to the convenient installation and minimum space required, this type of AC system is one of the best choices for most of the homes and commercial entities.

There are many types of split air conditioning units such as floor mounted, wall mounted and ceiling mounted systems. Depending on the requirements and budget, you can choose the best option that suits your home. There are certain important factors that need to be considered before deciding to buy the Split AC systems.

Checklists before choosing split air conditioners:

  • Size – Measure the size of the room before buying the split system since the cooling capacity of the unit largely depends on the room size. A unit that is too big for a living space could leave a damp feeling around and at the same time, a unit that is too small for the room would result in wastage of energy and money.
  • Hole in the wall – When installing a split air conditioner, there is a need to drill a hole in the wall which is not bigger than 3 inches in diameter. Consider this point before planning to invest in this system.
  • Warranty – Check if there is warranty provided for the product that you purchase. This will ensure that if there is any problem or any replacement required, the service would be free of charge which would be done by the heating and cooling company. Reputable brands of AC units would have a warranty of about 4 – 5 years.
  • Easy Filtration System – Most of the split air conditioners would have a filtration system which has the filters that needs to be cleaned periodically.
  • Star Rating – Make sure the split system you buy has energy rating labels that make the system more energy efficient.
  • Installation by HVAC technician – Since the installation is a complex process in split type AC systems, you would require a qualified technician to install the product.
  • Purchase Tubing – Apart from split air conditioning units, you must also buy tubing which is required for connecting the inner and the outer AC unit.
  • Compare the prices and features of split air conditioning systems offered by various heating and cooling companies before deciding to buy them.

Basics Of Refrigerated Air Conditioning

Refrigerated Air Conditioning systems are considered as one of the best cooling solutions in most of the homes since these units help to reduce the humidity level and provide good cooling in hot climatic conditions. The basic principle behind these types of AC systems is the refrigerant fluid that produces emissions to generate cool air. The refrigerated AC units look similar to evaporative units but the principle used is entirely different. Also, refrigerated systems are more effective than the evaporative units as these can work well in high humidity areas.

The major benefits associated with the refrigerated AC units are that these systems function very well in hot weather, remove excess humidity from the air, offer great comfort to the occupants and safeguard the occupants from unwanted allergens and pollutants. The refrigerated units are quite suitable for locations that experience extreme humidity. Excess heat does not affect the systems and these units can work better during summers. These AC units can also be used in rooms that do not have proper ventilation.

Basic Principles involved in Refrigerated Air Conditioning:

The refrigerated AC units work under the principle of evaporation of the refrigerant fluid that is contained within a closed system with high pressure. The compressor plays an important role in pumping the refrigerant fluid into the entire unit through interconnecting pipes. The fluid is then transferred to the evaporator at a very high pressure. When the hot fluid expands under this high pressure, the temperature drops and the fluid cools down to pass through the condenser coil. At this stage, the hot air from the room is blown over the coil and this heat is transferred back by the refrigerant to the compressor.

The fan blows over this hot compressor coil to cool down the air which is then circulated into the room and in the same manner, the hot air is expelled outside the AC unit. Although, the refrigerated units use more energy and are more expensive than the other systems, it performs very well. The humidity content is drastically reduced and therefore these units do not promote the breeding of dust mites that cause severe respiratory infections. The carbon gas emitted out of these units can be largely reduced through automatic thermostats and timers, additional insulation of the room and accurate positioning and installation of the unit.

Therefore, it is essential to choose the type of air conditioning units depending on the climatic conditions of your location.

Your AC Window Unit Has to be the Right Size

Did you know that according to some surveys that have been done, most air conditioning systems are actually 50% too big? Yes, that’s true, but in some ways, it is believable. It appears that some people think bigger is better. That is, of course, not necessarily the case. It’s real important that you get an air conditioner of the right size. That can be determined by an air conditioning professional, although it is probably easier for you to find out for yourself if you are operating a wall or window unit.

You will need a unit with 10,000 BTUs to properly cool a room that is 400 square feet; that is, one that is 20 feet in length and 20 feet in width. For 600 square feet, you’re talking more in the neighborhood of 14,000 BTUs. All this based on a ceiling that would be eight feet. And kitchens, because of the presence of appliances, takes more BTUs.

While you need the unit to be pushing out enough BTUs to do an adequate job, you also don’t want to overpower the room with it. The more work the AC has to do, the more energy may be going for naught, and that is never a good thing. You need to get the right size unit for the room you’re looking to cool.

There are some variables you can consider, or put in place. Remembering that if you are using a window unit in the first place the room can’t be terrifically big, you have the opportunity to supplement the work you air conditioner is doing with a few other things. One of them is to ventilate through another window, if it is available, or the single window in the room, if you have a unitary system that goes through a wall opening and not a window opening. Another is to have ceiling fans and/or portable fans carry some of the load. One of the things you want to do is to make things as easy on that AC unit as possible, which in turn will make things as easy on your pocketbook as possible. This is not a bad way to do it.

If you are in small rooms, it is entirely possible to go with a wall or window unit and be quite comfortable. If you take the extra measures to go about it in the right way, you’ll really be able to do so economically.

Maintenance Checklist for Air Conditioners

While many would normally prefer going for professional maintenance, this kind of routine is very expensive and sometimes ineffective. It is possible to perform the maintenance yourself if you know a bit of the technical know hows, and if you remember this checklist of maintenance.

1) Coils and Filters. Firstly, turn off the power and unplug your appliance. Next, disassemble the filters to clean them. This can be done by dousing the filters, front and back, with a phenol solution. It can also be done with any detergent mixed in hot water. All dirt, dust particles, mold formations and contamination by insects should be removed from the filters.

2) Chemical Cleaning. One has to make sure the coils of your unit remain clean. Dusty coils block the airflow and reduce the efficiency to start with, and might cause short circuit fires when unchecked for a long duration. But most of the users, and some servicemen too, vacuum the coils of the air conditioner in the name of cleaning. The coils of an air conditioner are home to a number of depositions created by the gaseous chemicals and fluids that are used as coolants. Vacuuming the coils sets these deposits free, thus causing them to mix with the air we breathe. When inhaled, these deposits and air borne particles, settle down in our lungs, causing chronic breathing problems. Chemical cleaning is one of the most harmless methods for cleaning the coils of your air conditioner. But make sure the chemicals you use are attested by recognized national laboratories, or you run the risk of the poor quality chemical’s vapors mixing with the air, and causing more problems than the ones you have been facing.

3) Rusting. Rusting is known to the cancer of iron and steel. It is one of the biggest problems when it comes to pipes due to the amount of fluid flow they see through their life time. All pipes have to be oiled and painted beforehand to avoid rusting, and those that are rusted beyond reason have to be replaced.

4) Why Maintenance. This is often overlooked, and is one of the most important aspects of going energy efficient. Properly cleaned air conditioners not only reduce risk of chronic breathing disorders, but also improves the air flow, thus improving the efficiency. Also, get your system serviced by a professional at-least once every 18 months to avoid long term problems.

What Can Happen Without an Air Conditioner

Air conditioners. The magic appliances that kick out the hot, humid air and bring in the cool, soothing air. The only devices that provide a welcome escape from this hot, sweaty, sweltering heat of the summer.

But besides this, what exactly is it that can happen without air conditioners?

Most people seem to be unaware of the health advantages of air conditioners.

Recent research indicates that air conditioners can have a huge positive effect on the health of its users. Air conditioning creates a cool, calm, clean and healthy environment, while reducing the effects of dust and other air borne particles.

Air conditioners greatly help people suffering with respiratory conditions like asthma, wheezing, chronic respiratory syndrome and the like. The air we inhale is usually contaminated with dust, air borne particles, gases and other chemically active particles that cause severe health problems when exposed to for a long period of time.

Air conditioners not only cools the air and reduces the effects of these air borne particles, but also effectively removes most of the non-hazardous particles from the air. The second most important feature of an air conditioner is its cooling and stress relieving capabilities.

Excessive heat increases blood pressure, causes an increase in pulse and heart rate for all ages, and thus, causes long term problems when exposed to for a long period of time. This can be avoided greatly with the use of proper air conditioning, the key word here being ‘proper’.

This kind of constant excessive pressure is greatly disturbing and causes an acute drop in performance and productivity. Proper air conditioning not only provides a cool, calm environment which soothes the nerves and decreases blood pressure, it also aids full recovery from the stressed tension that is seen among almost all working adults these days.

The excessive fatigue, dehydration and sweating that is usually caused by hot climates often leads to loss of energy, eating up your immune system and making you vulnerable to dangerous pathogens.

Proper air conditioning is one of the most sure shot escape out of all the above health related issues. But do make sure you contact a professional to help you pick the air conditioner that most suits your needs, and also plan your architecture and placing in those lines. Professionals also help pick the most economical plans that suit you, nobody wants to pay a ton of cash for an equipment that does not suit them.

Fret not, for Schmitt Heating has all your Air Conditioning San Francisco needs handled!