Dealing with HVAC trouble can be a frightening scenario for anyone who is unfamiliar with the best ways to identify reputable, qualified contractors. The most important thing a homeowner can do is to educate themselves thoroughly on the process before any needs arise. The article below can help everyone do just that.
Do not be surprised if the HVAC contractor you choose does an evaluation on your home. Any good contractor will spend time looking at the system you currently have and what the needs are for your home. They will also take a look at your duct system and look for air leaks.
Be sure to get every quote or estimate in written form. You have no recourse on a verbal agreement, so a written contract is a must. This will allow you to follow up if something goes wrong or you don't get what you were promised, protecting you from shady contractors.
Once it gets cold outside, you should turn off the outdoor condenser unit. If temps go below 60 you run the risk of damaging a unit that remains on. This will help keep it in good condition for many years.
When a contractor gives you a list of references, be sure to make use of it. Call the people on the list and ask about the quality of the work, how closely they came to their quote and whether or not the work was completed according to the promised timeline.
Sometimes, it can be hard to figure out if your HVAC system needs to be fixed or needs to be replaced. If your system frequently breaks down, is always turning on or off on its own, or if your bills are too high, it may pay to have it replaced. Otherwise, little things can just be fixed.
If you currently have a manual thermostat, consider installing a programmable one. You can set your system for different temperatures depending on time of day and if anyone is home. Also, you can set upper and lower temperature settings to allow for a comfortable range of temperatures so that heating and cooling don't kick in when not needed.
Before having someone install a new HVAC system or maintain or repair yours, make sure they are insured. Having someone who is insured work on your system will assure that if anything happens while they are working at your home, they are financially covered and you will not be responsible.
When you are no longer using your outdoor air conditioning unit, be sure to protect it with a tight cover. This will keep it free of debris, frost and snow so that you'll have a working unit when the spring comes and you are ready to uncover it and use it again.
Do not allow your home to reach excessive levels of heat during the summer. Air conditioners really can only cool a home down about 20 degrees Fahrenheit within a reasonable amount of time. So if your home is 100ºF, you'll only get the temperature down to about 80. Depending on the levels of humidity, that is not a safe temperature when it comes to sleeping or escaping from the heat of summer.
Improve the efficiency of your air conditioning by installing ceiling fans. Change the airflow direction of the ceiling fans. During the summer, the blades should move in a counter-clockwise direction. During the winter, the blades should move clockwise to help move the hot air in the ceiling down into the room.
To gain maximum HVAC efficiency, you need efficient windows and doors too. Make sure the seal is impenetrable from outdoor drafts, and that none of the air you're paying to heat or cool escapes either. You can also hire someone to test them.
Whether you have an air conditioner in a window or outside your home, be sure to keep it in the shade. The cooler the air around it, and the cooler the condenser itself, the easier a time it will have of keeping the air inside your home cool as well.
When you are looking to buy a new air conditioner, consider your climate. If you live in a hot, dry area, then an evaporative cooler will be your best bet. If you live in a humid area, opt for a compressor-style unit as it's the only one which will work.
Call in a contractor to find out if you can install an air conditioner on your current forced-air system without having to install new duct work. This can save you a ton of time and money, plus it takes up less space in your walls and rooms to boot.
Learn the rules and regulations regarding licenses and insurance before hiring an HVAC professional. This way you can check to make sure that any contractor you consider hiring meets any requirements. This can prevent a costly legal process, especially in case of an accident on site. Without insurance, you could be held liable for damages.
An experienced HVAC company should be chosen to help you out. Companies that are most reliable stick to the appointment time they give you. Good technicians are also able to diagnose issues quickly. They should offer you answers which can be implemented right away.
Have your HVAC inspected every year to ensure that it is working properly. The technician will check your filters, drain lines, air flow and Freon levels. This will have your HVAC working at peak performance saving you money all season long. It will also alert you to any repairs that need to be address before they become big problems.
Want to save the most you can with your HVAC unit? Consider increasing your room temperature by a single degree or two. Each degree means money that stays in your pocket. In fact some estimate that each degree you move up can work out to be around 9% in overall energy savings.
Don't just hire the first contractor you meet or call. Be sure to compare multiple options website before going ahead with one. They should meet all of your requirements, be it offering a great guarantee to being able to come and do the work on your budget and within your timeline.
There is absolutely no question, that poor HVAC performance during the hot seasons or frigid winter months can pose a serious threat to a homeowners finances and comfort. If you perform regular maintenance, you are less likely to experience an untimely break down. The tips from this article can help the homeowner make the best decisions about HVAC and steer clear of the worse case scenario.