three way manifold

three way manifold
Gauges used for testing refrigerant pressures.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Things to Notice About Your AC System

Air conditioning is a wonderful invention!  Invented in 1902 by Willis Haviland Carrier (the founder of today's Carrier Company), it has been continuously reshaped, remolded and improved upon by numerous people and companies over the years.  Technology has aided and simplified air conditioning repairs over the years, but the main reason for the continuous improvements are the inherent problems that come along with an air conditioning system.  These problems may be minor and easily fixed by a homeowner or renter.  The problems could also be major, costing several thousand dollars to fix by a licensed contractor.

Each A/C system has many electrical parts in it.  These parts range from a transformer to convert 240 volt electrcity down to 24 volt electricity for the thermostat controls, to control boards (large computer chips) and capacitors, which boost power to start fans and compressors.  As many of us have learned throughout our lives, and I heard directly from my Grandpa, "The more parts a piece of machinery has, the more ways it has to breakdown."  It's absolutely true!  The electrical system in an air conditioner can be rather simple or extremely complex, depending on how old a unit is and exactly what it's designed to do.  Either way, if something breaks down, it will cost money to get it repaired, and you will be uncomfortable while waiting.

Central air systems have ductwork associated with them.  In rural areas, there have been many cases of raccoons getting into an attic and tearing ductwork apart to make nests and bedding.  Sometimes, a person tries to navigate through an attic, and steps on ducts running to different parts of the home.  The duct can be smashed or pulled away from the unit's plenum.  These sorts of things inhibit airflow, and are tough to reach.  If you don't know what you're doing, you will be paying big money for these repairs too.

Since air conditioning systems pull condensation from the air, much like a glass of iced tea sitting on the table, they need to have drains.  These drains are a great invention.  They make sure the condensate is directed outside the home or to an internal drain.  Depending on weather conditions though, theses drains are subject to clog.  Think to yourself, "What grows best in a wet, warm, dark environment?"  Mildew is the answer.  This mildew can clog the drain, causing it to back up and drip from wherever the unit is.  Late model air conditioning system also have auxiliary drains too.  These come into use when the original or primary drain is clogged, but if the original problem isn't fixed in a timely manner, this drain will also eventually become clogged.  That's when you have problems!  This is just one more thing a contractor will charge a couple hundred bucks to fix.

There are other problems you can run into with an air conditioning system  too, but most are easily avoidable with regular maintenance.  I'm not one to say you're better off without an air conditioner, but I will tell you to weigh out the cost of annual or semiannual maintenance with the cost of the repairs.  It's likely you will end up paying much more for your air conditioner if you try to forget about it and take it for granted.  The highest priced repairs are the ones where people let simple problems continue to escalate.  For all the pros an air conditioning system has, it definitely has its cons.  So think of regular maintenance of your unit like insurance for your car . . . a necessary expense that can save you bundles over time.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Beat the Heat

Beat the Heat

Air conditioning as well as heating units can easily suck up more than 50% of your household energy usage and, with units working overtime to keep you cool this summer, it might be time for you to perform a couple of efficiency tests to see if the systems should be fixed or replaced. Working with All Seasons HVAC can help you save a bundle on your energy costs.

Generally speaking, Air conditioning and heater systems that are over a decade old are 20-30% less efficient as newer energy-saver models. Brand name units are 'Energy-Star' certified, meaning they are ultra-efficient and can help you save up to 20% per month on power bills. Add to that new unit innovations in comfort that reduce noise and vibration, eliminate breezes and temperature swings, and are available with prolonged warranties that will save you big money on repairs, and you can start to see all the advantages of improving your system today through All Seasons HVAC.
Heating, ventilation, as well as air conditioning systems (HVAC) provide you with the latest in residential and commercial comfort and help maintain proper airflow and climate control throughout homes and office buildings. AC replacement also can keep these spaces free from mold and other harmful organisms that can leak through old systems.

And finally, while you're certainly setting yourself up to help save a bundle on your power bill, you'll also be saving the environment as well. These energy-reducing replacements cut down not only on the amount of fossil fuel you consume, but also on your carbon footprint and actual household emissions.
Typically, most consumers arrange for periodic check-ups to ensure everything is in working order. A spring and fall check-up with All Seasons HVAC should suffice. Small problems do pop up every so often, more so when the unit gets old. Nevertheless, these issues could be taken care of quickly and with little cost if they are identified early on by using All Seasons HVAC you can catch these problems in time.

Some of the recurring actions performed by service personnel include:

- Cleaning filter systems: Removing debris and dust from your unit requires more than just looking at the interior pads. It is necessary to examine the ducts and vents too. This protects the entire system from all the potential problems that could come up. Clogs ought to be flushed in order to prevent blockages. When vents are cleaned thoroughly, effectiveness also goes up. Along with this, it is crucial to clean the area surrounding the unit.

- Tuning up: Regular tune-ups ensure that the unit is working at optimum capacity and delivering the right output. Tune-ups generally include measurement of airflow, making adjustments in refrigerant charge, testing the efficiency of the capacitor, checking levels of Freon and so on. All the coils and wires are also checked out for rust, wear and tear. Following a proper tune-up, the air conditioning unit becomes re-energized and it starts to work at its optimal capacity.

Even though some people leave off air condition repairs  until problems arise, other people invest in normal maintenance. Repair must be performed by trained professionals such as All Seasons Comfort who have the following skills:

- Preventative maintenance
- Diagnosing and fixing problems with heating and cooling systems
- Replacement of parts
- Regular tuning up of units
- Unit control adjustments
- Onsite analysis

It is necessary to hire trained HVAC professionals such as the ones at All Seasons.  Dealing with electrical appliances can be hazardous. For example, releasing burnt refrigerant into the air may have dangerous repercussions. Having a trained professional on the job ensures safety as well as quality work.

Contact All Seasons Comfort today for all your heat and air conditioning needs!

All Seasons Comfort - heating and air conditioning