HVAC System: Top 5 Causes of HVAC Failure

HVAC System

HVAC System Tips for Optimal Efficiency

Your home’s HVAC system is composed of several mechanical components working together, designed to keep your home safe and comfortable. It provides adequate ventilation, clean air and regulates temperature throughout your living space.

When each component functions properly you barely notice, but when something is wrong, everyone knows.

When your system fails you are aware of the discomfort because of seasonal temperatures. However, malfunctioning heating and air conditioning can also lower indoor air quality, affect health and raise energy costs unnecessarily. If your system fails, check these five things before you call an HVAC professional.

The Top 5 Causes of HVAC Failure

Check the Electrical Breaker

If the HVAC system will not work at all, go to the electrical panel and check for a tripped breaker. The panel door depicts which breaker supplies the HVAC system—usually, more than one breaker supplies the system. If the breaker is tripped, it is in a neutral position.

If you wiggle it gently, it will move both right and left. Turn the breaker off and then turn it to the “on” position. In both the on and off position the breaker will be firm, with no more wiggle.

If this is the only problem, the breaker will restore power to your system and it will return to normal use. The breaker might have tripped for a number of reasons. If the breaker trips again, contact a professional electrician to investigate the problem. It is no longer a DIY project.

Dirty Air Filters

The easiest DIY preventative maintenance task you can do for your system is to change the air filter. The filter will be positioned for easy accessibility and collects dust and pollutants before the air is heated or cooled. This keeps dust out of vital mechanical components and traps them before they can be redistributed.

An air filter will continue to collect pollutants even when it is dirty; however, the dust and pollen build up over time and slows the airflow, which and makes the blower motor work much harder. Plan on changing your filter at least every 3 months, but be aware that your home may require more frequent changes.

Factors such as living on a dusty road, near construction or having several pets might necessitate frequent filter changes.

Filters are readily available at hardware and DIY centers. Air filters come in a variety of materials, including washable filters for reuse. Explore your options.

Impeded Air Flow

The duct system transports clean conditioned air throughout the home, unless something is blocking the airflow. Occasionally a homeowner will not notice a room vent and place furniture or accessories on the vent, blocking airflow. Also, check the dampers on the room vents to ensure they are in the open position.

Your ductwork system may also have dampers in the main supply lines which regulate airflow. These dampers are designed to balance the flow of air for seasonal changes. If dampers are not balanced properly, you will experience uneven heat or AC in some rooms, while proper dampening will heat and cool rooms evenly. Uneven heating and cooling adds stress to your HVAC system and shortens system life.

Check the Thermostat

Thermostats are equivalent to an on/off switch, determined by air temperature in a room, typically the most used room in the house. If the switch is not functioning properly the entire system will not work properly.

Fortunately, replacing a thermostat is a simple and relatively inexpensive fix. Unfortunately, many homeowners are not prepared to diagnosis the problem.

If you suspect the thermostat might be the culprit, consult your professional for an inspection. In many cases, a new programmable or smart thermostat will help lower your utility bills and increase your comfort.

A Refrigerant Leak

When the outside temperature rises and your AC “can’t keep up,” it is definitely time to call your HVAC professional and have the refrigerant level checked. Your AC unit requires a gas coolant in a contained circuit and any crack or flaw in the circuit will allow the gas to escape.

Often the refrigerant escapes gradually resulting in decreasing performance and leading to a failure to cool. The decrease in performance is serious, as it causes the AC components to work extremely hard and leads to complete failure.

The HVAC professional might be able to find the source of the leak and replace the refrigerant. Replacing the refrigerant often makes an immediate, noticeable change.

Want more information about HVAC System Tips for Optimal Efficiency

If you are considering to better your Air Conditioning Efficiency, call us at 281-238-9292 or contact us via email.

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HVAC System

3 Reasons Why Winter HVAC Repairs Should Be Addressed Immediately

3 Reasons Why Winter HVAC Repair Should Be Addressed Immediately

Repairs to your HVAC system are not something that you want to delay. The longer you delay these repairs, the more costly they can become. Scheduling your HVAC repair early in the fall can provide you with the best appointment times. As we get further into winter, there will be fewer available appointment times.

Avoid Costly HVAC Repairs

If your HVAC system has shown any signs of wear and tear, you will want to address that repair as soon as possible. Minor problems with your HVAC system can lead to major repairs if left unaddressed. Neglected repairs can even lead to the replacement of an entire HVAC system if the component damage becomes too extensive. Waiting for your HVAC system to fail can cause your repair to be delayed if the repair technician’s appointments are already booked, or multiple components become impacted.

Reduce Your Exposure and Risk to Emergency Repairs

Emergency repairs can be very costly. Many HVAC repair companies increase appointment fees for after-hours or weekend appointments. You will want to avoid these unnecessary charges by scheduling your repair at the first sign of a problem. Don’t put your self at the mercy of a total system failure, when the timing is beyond your control.

Increase Your HVAC System’s Lifespan

3 Reasons Why Winter HVAC Repair Should Be Addressed Immediately

Neglecting regular maintenance or timely HVAC repairs can shorten the lifespan of your HVAC equipment. Regular maintenance will keep components operating at their highest level and will identify potential problems before they become more serious. Without these services, your air conditioning equipment might need to be replaced sooner than you expected.

Need HVAC Repair before Winter? We Can Help!

Summer is nearly over. You need to make sure your furnace is ready for winter, call us at 281-238-9292 or contact us via email.

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How To Unclog Your AC Drain Line?

How To Unclog Your AC Drain Line

AC Drain Line Maintenance

Clogged condensate drain lines can cause expensive repair that can be avoided. There are ways to prevent water leaks from a clogged AC drain line. Here are the steps to thoroughly clean your AC drain lines.

Step 1: Turn Your AC System Off

Some air conditioning systems will shut off if the condensate line becomes clogged. However, if you notice that the drain line is clogged, turn off your system. If your HVAC system continues to work, it will continue to drain water which can cause your drain pan to overflow causing water damage.

Step 2: Locate Your AC Condensate Drain Line and Runoff

Every HVAC system has a condensate drain line that runs from the indoor air handler to a location outside your home. This drain line removes the water from your AC system as it dehumidifies your home.

In order to unclog your AC drain line, you will need to locate your condensate drain line runoff and have access to it in order to clear them.

You will need to know the location of both your condensate drain line runoff and access to clear the clog.

Step #3: Removing the AC Drain Line Clog

At your drain runoff, attach a wet/dry vac hose to the end of the drain line. You can use a towel or duct tape to make the connection to the drain line more airtight. Run the vacuum a few minutes to blow out any debris or build-up.

You may need to blow air out the drain line, or you may need to use the vacuum as a vacuum to remove the clog. You may need to repeat these steps a few times to completely remove the clog.

For difficult clogs, you may try a mix of bleach/distilled vinegar and hot water to remove build-up. This will help break down the clog and make it easier to remove.

How To Unclog Your AC Drain Line

How to Prevent Future AC Drain Line Clogs?

We recommend that you take preventative measures to reduce AC drain line clogs. Pouring a cup of bleach down your condensate line will kill mildew and algae and prevent future growth inside the drain line.

Have a clogged AC drain line?

If you suspect your AC drain line is clogged, avoid costly repairs and call us at 281-238-9292 or contact us via email. The longer you ignore or put off making the call, the most costly the repair can be.

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Smart Thermostat 101

Smart Thermostat 101

What is a smart thermostat?

Your HVAC system thermostat regulates the temperature setting for your air conditioning, furnace, or heat pump. Thermostats are connected directly to your HVAC system. A smart thermostat allows you to control your home’s HVAC system remotely and will “learn” your habits to efficiently keep your home regulated.

Certain apps also allow you to remotely control your wireless thermostat even when you’re not home.

Why choose an interactive thermostat?

One of the biggest benefits of an interactive thermostat is energy savings. Your smart thermostat allows you to program your home’s temperature to match your schedule. You will consume less energy by efficiently setting your thermostat and allowing your HVAC system to work smarter, not harder.

Your smart thermostat can also adjust indoor temperatures based on the outside temperature to help you regulate energy usage. Interactive temperature setting by your thermostat will take away the worry of having to remember if you adjusted temperature settings while you are away.

Smart thermostats allow you to adjust temperatures from anywhere, anytime. If you want to turn down your AC before you arrive, you can do that. If you notice a warm/cold front while you are on vacation, you can make the adjustment as necessary.

Advanced Benefits of a Smart Thermostat

Wireless smart thermostats go above and beyond the features of a programmable model to deliver an effortless indoor comfort experience. With a wireless thermostat, you’ll get:

Easy Programming: A smart thermostat learns your habits and behaviors, schedule, and preferences to keep you comfortable without the need to adjust the temperature setting.

Wi-Fi Connectivity: You can control your thermostat and your home’s temperature settings from your mobile device or desktop computer.

Energy Consumption Reporting: Your smart thermostat compiles data regarding your energy consumption so you can fine-tune your HVAC system to maximize your energy savings.

Repair and Maintenance Alerts: Smart thermostats will alert you to upcoming system maintenance and can also alert you to any improperly functioning systems.

What Savings Should I Expect

While actual savings will vary from home to home based on factors such as temperature preferences and energy costs, installing a smart thermostat offers the potential for significant savings.

According to ENERGY STAR, the correct use of a programmable thermostat will save you approximately $180 per year. The determining factor is if the programmable thermostat is used correctly or not.

Many interactive thermostat manufacturers offer online savings calculators which can help you determine your potential savings based on the area in which you live. Smart thermostats will cost more and can cost more to install than a manual thermostat.

The energy savings achieved by smart thermostat usage will allow the equipment to pay for itself over time.

If you currently have a manual thermostat, upgrading to a “smart stat” is certainly going to be worth it because of the energy savings it helps you achieve by taking system adjustments out of your hands.

Interested in energy-efficient HVAC solutions?

If you are experiencing a noticeable decrease in the functioning and efficiency of your HVAC system, you need to call us at 281-238-9292 or contact us via email. The longer you ignore or put off making the call, the most costly the repair can be.

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4 Energy Efficient HVAC Tips

Top  Energy Efficient HVAC Four Reasons Your Energy Bill is too High

Top  Energy Efficient HVAC Four Reasons Your Energy Bill is too High

Summer is here! Temperatures outside are in triple digits some days, and homeowners are beginning to see their energy bills increase. It is important to learn what factors will cause your bill to go up, and what can lower your utility bill while keeping your home cool.

What Non Energy Efficient HVAC habits increase your cooling bill?

There are several factors that can increase your summer cooling bill, and here is how to combat them.

Energy Efficient HVAC Thermostat Control

As the summer heats up, we want it cool inside our home. Many homeowners set their thermostats lower than normal to make up for the high temperature. Depending on the difference between the outside temperature and indoor temperature, your air conditioning system might work overtime to keep up with the demands of the summertime heat.

Increased Laundry

Summertime tends to mean an increase in the number of clothes that we wear. This will result in having to do more laundry, and constantly running the dryer will also increase your energy or cooling bill.

Poorly Insulated Homes

Many older homes are not properly insulated. Losing your cool air through poorly sealed doors and windows and improperly insulated walls or attic spaces will increase your electricity usage. Your HVAC system will end up running longer and under more pressure with poor insulation. A significantly increased utility bill can be an easy way to identify poor insulation in your home.

Inefficient Air Conditioning System

Another large increase to your utility bill can be a poorly functioning or improperly installed system. Modern air conditioning systems are more efficient by design, but it is crucial to maintain an HVAC system to ensure its proper function.

Energy Efficient HVAC Ways to Lower Your Cooling Bill

There are a few steps that you can take to lower your utility bill and reduce your energy consumption.

Set Your Thermostat to a Higher Temperature

While this may not be the most comfortable decision, increasing your thermostat setting a few degrees may not be a noticeable change to your comfort level. These few degrees can add up to a 5-10% decrease in your utility bills.

Install a Programmable or Smart Thermostat

Manual thermostats allow your system to cycle at all hours of the day and night to keep your home at the desired temperature. A smart thermostat “learns” your habits to keep your home at the desirable setting which will lower your utility consumption. A smart thermostat will adjust the temperature setting when you are away to help reduce the cost of your cooling bill since you are only using the air conditioning when you need it instead of heating or cooling an empty house.

Increase Your Home’s Insulation to Increase Energy Efficient HVAC

Increasing the amount of attic insulation and replacing damaged weather stripping can drastically reduce your home’s energy usage. Attic insulation is relatively affordable and can be a DIY weekend project.

Proper Energy Efficient HVAC / Air Conditioning System Maintenance

Proper maintenance prevents your air conditioning system from overworking. It is recommended that your air conditioning system serviced twice a year, once before summer and again in the fall before winter. During your maintenance appointment, one of our HVAC technicians will inspect all HVAC components to ensure proper function and indicate any potential replacement required.

Need Energy Efficient HVAC Maintenance or Repair?

If you are experiencing a noticeable decrease in the functioning and efficiency of your HVAC system, you need to call us at 281-238-9292 or contact us via email. The longer you ignore or put off making the call, the most costly the repair can be.

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Avoid Costly AC Repair with this Simple Suggestion

AC Repair: Best Practices to Avoid AC Repair

AC Repair Money Saving Tips

When was the last time you changed your air conditioning filter? If you don’t recall, it has definitely been too long. During the intense heat of a Texas summer, your AC system takes a beating. Contaminants, dust, and debris fill your home’s air. Expectations of your air conditioner filter to miraculously perform when you attempt to extend its life is dangerous and costly.

A leading cause of AC repair and air conditioning repair is the failure to replace your filter timely.

Top Excuses We Hear To Why The AC System Filter is Not Changed Regularly

– I didn’t remember to change it

– It is not “that dirty” it doesn’t need to be changed

– I am unable to change them myself

– I don’t know which filter to buy

This simple act can save you costly AC repair and prevent air conditioning repair that can eventually force you to replace the entire HVAC system.

Setting a calendar reminder on your computer or smartphone to remind you to change your filter is an easy solution to forgetting to change the filter. If your filter is not dirty after six months, chances are it was not properly installed from the beginning. Improper filter installation can cause serious damage to your system components. If you need assistance in installing your HVAC filter or knowing which filter to install, All Cool AC offers AC repair and maintenance.

How To Tell You Need AC repair or Air Conditioning Repair/Maintenance

New homeowners or renters may find it difficult to tell if they need to schedule an AC repair appointment with a professional HVAC technician. Being unfamiliar with the baseline of efficiency of your HVAC system allows you to judge when something is amiss more easily. Remember that addressing any issues quickly will prevent more serious system failures in the future. Here are the most common signs that you need air conditioning repair.

Reduced Airflow of Cool Air

This is something you will notice quite quickly and easily. If you start the system and your AC does not turn on it is a good sign that your system needs repair. If your system does engage but you find there isn’t enough airflow, or the air is not cool, it can indicate that the ductwork is clogged or the ductwork has disconnected. A reduction in airflow is one of the clearest indications that your AC is in need of repair.

Moisture and Condensation Buildup

When warm air and cool air mix, the result is condensation. When your air conditioning unit is working efficiently, the unit handles the condensation with no problems. If moisture and leakage begin to build up and become visible around the unit, it can mean that you have a refrigerant leak. Refrigerant leaks cause significant damage to your unit, and if neglected, it can lead to health threats to you and your family. If it is condensation, rust and mold can result, which can lead to a costly repair that extends beyond your HVAC system.

Vibrations or Mechanical Sounds

If you begin to hear noise coming from your air conditioning system or ductwork, it may be a sign that you need to schedule an AC repair appointment. Squeaking, grinding, excessive vibrations, and mechanical noises are also a sign that your air conditioning unit is aging and may need to be replaced. This is one of the most noticeable indicators that you need AC repair.

Need AC repair or Air Conditioning Repair?

If you are experiencing a noticeable decrease in the functioning and efficiency of your HVAC system, you need to call us at 281-238-9292 or contact us via email. The longer you ignore or put off making the call, the most costly the repair can be.

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