Tag Archives: heating and air

Pros and Cons of HVAC Covers

Pros and Cons of HVAC CoversTo cover or not to cover your HVAC? That is sometimes a question a homeowner needs to answer. Here’s what you should know when making your decision about HVAC covers:

To Cover — or Not

It’s not really the entire HVAC system you will need to worry about, but just the outdoor portion of the air conditioner, which includes the condenser and compressor. Although these parts of your A/C are vital to its operation, they are pretty well protected within the sturdy metal housing that usually covers the air conditioner.

 

You would not want to cover the condenser up in the summer because that would impede air flow, but in the winter, when its not in use, you probably wouldn’t want to cover it up either. The reason? It makes a cozy nest for rodents, which are likely to burrow their way in and set up shop. HVAC companies often report a nice business in springtime, repairing the damage to wiring and other parts that rodents may do when the condenser is covered up tight.

 

So when would you want to cover up the air conditioner? Here are a few scenarios:

During snow events

It’s unlikely in our area that we will experience the kind of intense snow event that would damage your condenser, but here’s when you need to worry about snow. If it were to snow so intensely that your condenser fills up with snow, then it melts, then refreezes continuously over a period of a few days, damage could occur to the unit. The best solution is to put a piece of plywood on top of the unit and anchor it so snow can’t fall inside.

To prevent storm damage or deflect falling debris

If you’re concerned about hail damage or damage from falling limbs or storm debris, you can cover up the unit during the storm (but remember to turn it off) with a tarp, tightly secured, or an actual commercially manufactured vinyl cover.

 

To learn more about HVAC covers, contact Powers Heating and Air. We serve Peachtree City and the surrounding area.

 

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040.

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “geralt/Pixabay”

A/C System Dying? Warning Signs

A/C System Dying? Warning SignsHave you turned on the A/C system this spring only to find the old war horse is just not quite getting the job done? If your HVAC is more than 10 years old, it may have reached its projected life expectancy and be ready for replacement. Read on for information about how to know when your A/C is dying, and when it’s time to start shopping for a new one.

Signs the A/C Should Be Replaced

1. Age. As mentioned above, if the A/C is more than 10-15 years old, it may be worn out and ready for replacement. Although we know you want it to last as long as possible, you should be aware that modern air conditioners are much more efficient than those manufactured 10-15 years ago, and when you replace your old model, you’ll reap the benefits from lower utility bills.

 

2. No cold air. This could be an easily solvable condition, such as changing the air filter or cleaning the coils, but it might also be that the compressor is dying. It generally is not worthwhile to replace the compressor. When it dies, it’s time to replace the A/C.

 

3. Screeching sounds from the compressor. Another sign of compressor failure is a screeching sound. Have the compressor inspected and replace the A/C if need be.

 

4. Your utility bills are going up. As your A/C ages, it may have to work harder to cool your home. It draws more power while doing so, and will increase your utility costs. While an HVAC tech will be able to examine your A/C and look for easy fixes, it may be the unit is just wearing out and ready to go.

 

5. Runs continuously. If your A/C runs continuously and you’re just feeling warmish air from the vents, it’s probably time to replace the system. You can try checking the refrigerant charge, cleaning coils and a few other repairs, but it also may be the system is worn out.

 

For more advice on whether your A/C system is wearing out, contact Powers Heating and Air. We serve Peachtree City.

 

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040.

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “TeroVesalainen/Pixabay”

How Wi-Fi Detectors Catch Water Leaks and Freezes

How Wi-Fi Detectors Catch Water Leaks and FreezesSpending a little to save a lot is hardly a new concept for homeowners, and Wi-Fi detectors fall squarely into that category. With any luck, they’ll sit idle forever, but when they sound an alarm, they could prevent hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars in damage and inconvenience.

 

Water leak and freeze detectors have been around for decades, but only recently have they been equipped with Wi-Fi signaling devices. Should a leak occur or a freeze be imminent, they’ll alert you on your phone, whether you’re at home or elsewhere.

 

Left unchecked, water leaks and frozen pipes cause major damage to floors, walls, ceilings and structural components. Water causes wood to swell, mold and mildew to grow and textile damage. You may or not hear anything when a pipe breaks or freezes or an appliance fails.

Where to Place Them

  • The most vulnerable appliance in homes is the water heater. It’s usually placed in an out-of-the way location and it operates quietly. Storage water heaters can suddenly spring leaks, or the pipes leading to or away from it may fail.
  • Clothes washers also hold a good deal of water, and if their hoses aren’t replaced periodically or if the tub springs a leak, flooding can be serious. It could be especially serious if your washer sits on a second floor location close to the bedrooms.
  • Air conditioners sometimes freeze over. While they won’t cause as much water damage as a water heater or washer, Wi-Fi detectors placed inside the air handler can alert you to a serious HVAC problem. The evaporator coil inside the air handler can freeze over if the system doesn’t have enough refrigerant or the air filter is excessively dirty. If the system continues to run with a frozen coil, it could burn out the compressor, the system’s most expensive part.

Wi-Fi detectors placed in vulnerable locations may prevent untold damage to your home. To learn more, contact Powers Heating & Air, proudly providing HVAC services for Peachtree City homeowners.

 

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040.

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Scigola/Pixabay”

If Your Furnace Disappointed You This Winter, It May Be Time For An Upgrade

If Your Furnace Disappointed You This Winter, It May Be Time For An UpgradeTrying to get through winter with a malfunctioning, poorly performing furnace can be a frustrating experience. Now that winter’s finally over, it may be time to send that ragged old furnace to the junkyard and upgrade with a new and better unit. Here are some important points to consider as you look at your options for a furnace upgrade.

  • End-of-season specials: Now that temperatures are warming up, HVAC dealers may be interesting in moving furnaces and heating system equipment at a discount. With demand for heating at a post-season low, prices on equipment and installation are likely to drop. Contact your trusted local source and ask about any end-of-season specials.
  • Find the type you need: Furnaces use multiple types of fuel, including natural gas, propane, and fuel oil. Natural gas furnaces are very common. They work quite well in most environments, and gas utility hook-ups are easy to find throughout the country. All-electric furnaces are a money-saving heating option, as are geothermal heat pumps that make extremely effective use of the electricity that powers them.
  • Get a right-sized unit: Consult with your HVAC supplier to make sure you get a furnace that is the right size for your home. Avoid furnaces that are too small; they don’t heat adequately and must work harder, which leads to early breakdowns. A system that is too large will overheat your home and waste energy and money.
  • Go for a high-efficiency system: A high-efficiency furnace will save you considerable amounts of money on your monthly utility bills. You will most likely see savings high enough that the unit will pay for itself by about the halfway point of its life. Look for a furnace with a high annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating. This number indicates the percentage of energy in the fuel that becomes usable heat. Higher AFUE numbers mean better efficiency.
  • Take into consideration your cooling system needs:  Ask your HVAC comfort consultant to review your current air conditioning system.  You should always look at how a new furnace will enhance your current AND future air conditioning equipment and provide the most efficient and cost effective system possible.

Powers Heating & Air provides HVAC services to residential and commercial customers in South Metro Atlanta Georgia and areas like Peachtree City, Newnan and Fayetteville. Contact us today for more information on furnace upgrades, to get an estimate for a new heating system or to schedule installation.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about furnace upgrades and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

Powers Heating & Air serves Peachtree, GA and the surrounding areas.  Visit our website to see our special offers and get started today!     

Preventative Maintenance image via Shutterstock

Drive Your Heat-Pump System ROI Up With These Performance-Enhancing Tips

A heat-pump system can be one of the most efficient ways to heat and cool your home and you can get more efficiency from it as long as the parts are functioning properly. A heat pump uses refrigerant to both heat and cool your home and a blower to send the air through the ducts that connect all the conditioned spaces in your home.

Refrigerant

The level of your refrigerant should be within a few ounces of the manufacturer’s specifications. The refrigerant is either a liquid or a vapor and it can leak from the tubes through which it circulates, either through mechanical problems or small leaks that form over time. Refrigerant is a regulated substance and only licensed HVAC technicians can adjust the levels in your heat-pump system. Most manufacturers recommend annual maintenance for heat pumps, during which your refrigerant levels are checked and adjusted.

Airflow

The blower inside the air handler circulates the conditioned air through the system. Two factors directly impact the airflow. The first is the speed at which the blower fan runs and the second is the amount of dust on the evaporator coil. Ideally, the air should blow at the speed of 400 to 500 cubic feet per minute. If the blower sends the air at slower speeds, the heat-pump system’s efficiency will be compromised.

A dirty evaporator coil makes it harder for the air coming in contact with it to heat or cool. You can prevent this from happening by cleaning or changing your system’s air filter when it gets dirty, reducing the chances of dust build-up inside the air handler.

Ducts

When ducts leak, the conditioned air is lost to spaces where you don’t need it. If a room suddenly becomes too hot or cold, the first place to look should be the ducts. Kinked ducts also prevent heated or cooled air from reaching a space. An HVAC technician can pinpoint and repair duct problems, increasing efficiency.

Contact us at Powers Heating & Air in Peachtree City, Newnan, Fayette and Coweta Counties for help with all your heat-pump issues.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about heat-pump systems and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

Powers Heating & Air serves Peachtree, GA and the surrounding areas.  Visit our website to see our special offers and get started today!