Due to the many differences between each application, we cannot say which type would best suit your home or business without more information. A one-size-fits-all solution simply does not exist. We will need to review several factors with you, including the usage, location, type of structure, expected comfort level, and the estimated return on your investment. After listening carefully to your concerns and the benefits you hope to achieve with your new equipment, we can make a recommendation.
You probably wouldn't get a brand-new car and assume to never have to inflate the tires, change the oil and examine any atypical noises. Your home comfort system is similar to your car’s engine; it’s a mechanical device with a motor, electrical components... and even fuel. So it is essential to have routine maintenance of your home comfort system by a qualified technician. If not maintained properly and routinely, even the best heating and air conditioning equipment could experience complications and become less 'fuel' efficient over time.
HVAC is short for Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning. HVAC is most often used to depict the whole heating and cooling system consisting of the duct work, air filters, humidification controls, and registers.
No, HVAC air filters vary due to quality and size, and some have specs that others don't. In most cases we recommend installing the filter your HVAC manufacturer recommends pairing up with your installed system, though you might be tempted to try some other filter type for convenience or to remove additional debris from your residence.
All filters have MERV ratings, which range from 1-20. MERV stands for "minimum efficiency reporting value". A higher MERV rating means fewer particles pass through, and it catches finer particulates. This sounds fantastic, and it can be, but a filter that stops finer dust and dirt will also clog up quicker, and pressure on your unit will increase. If your system has not been crafted to operate with this kind of filter, it can reduce your airflow around your residence, putting the hurt on your comfort and energy costs. So what should you do? Unless you live in a hospital, you probably don't need a MERV rating above 13. In fact, most residential HVAC systems are specifically designed to work with a filter with a MERV rating below 13, and frequently you will find that quality systems have been made to work with a MERV rating of 8 or 11. All filters with a MERV rating of five should catch most of the everyday nuisances people care about such as pollen, pet dander, and dust. While some filters claim to be able to catch mold spores, we recommend having a professional remove any mold from your residence you find, instead of trying to hide the issue with a finer filter.
Often the packaging indicates how often your filter should be replaced. There are one-month filters and there are 3-month filters. Additionally we have filters that are two dimensional, flat screens, and you have some that are built accordian style with supporting wire. In our experience, the accordian style filters hold up better, and are worth the extra pennies.
You might also consider washable filters, also known as reusable filters. Some homeowners like the environmentally friendly aspect of it, since they don't pile onto a dump, and others think it more convenient to quickly slide out the filter and clean it off rather than making a special trip to the local hardware store for a filter of the right size. These filters are often created to endure several years and will save you money over those years, though they are pricier initially. However, washable filters should be dried out thoroughly before returning it back to eliminate mold growth in your ductwork. In addition, most washable filters reportedly have a MERV rating between 1 and 4, and they lose their efficiency over the years. Some washable filters have been built with new tech, such as electrostatic air filters, that are meant to basically improve the MERV rating.
Last, filters are composed from different materials. Fiberglass filters are what we see most often, and are the disposable type. Polyester and pleated filters are known to catch more debris, but also reduce the airflow in your residence. And there are high efficiency particulate arrestance filters, or HEPA for short. While you could be tempted to use a HEPA filter, keep in mind that's like putting a MERV 16 filter in your HVAC system and it's very unlikely that your unit was made to handle that kind of resistance.
Indoor Air Quality is a term used to define the level or amount of air pollution that hangs inside a house or building, particularly occupied areas or rooms. Concentrations of air pollutants can be up to 100 times higher indoors than outdoors and the American Lung Association estimates that most people spend 90% of their time indoors. Think about the point that you breathe an estimated 3,000 gallons of air daily. It’s clear that IAQ products that can enhance air quality and eliminate indoor air pollution have become more and more important for many families, namely those dealing with allergies and respiratory problems. There are numerous possibilities for fighting allergy-inducing pollution in your space including high-efficiency air filtration and air cleaners that filter or kill all the bothersome airborne toxins that bring on sneezing. Choices range from HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filtration to lights that eliminate viruses and duct cleaning that removes built-up debris from over the years.
According to studies created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, exposure to air pollutants indoors can be 100 times higher than outdoors. Frequent dusting and vacuuming can help reduce the amount of dust and dust mites present in your home. However, not all airborne particles can be eliminated. Filtration devices can help eliminate particles that are too small to be caught by a vacuum. Some filtration devices include UV light units, air filters, energy recovery ventilators (ERVs), heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) and electronic air cleaners. A Home Health Report Card from Service Experts will provide the information about which indoor air improvement devices are right for you.
Each application is different. There are situations in which zoning a home with one system could be more cost effective and actually allow for more “spot” cooling or heating to specific areas than a standard multi-zone system installation. However, there are also applications in which the cooling or heating system design requires more than one system can provide, creating a need for multiple systems. Using our design experience and installation expertise, we can determine whether a multi- or single-zone system would best fit your home or business. Then, taking the complete picture into account, we can offer a suggestion so that you can make an informed decision.
When the system starts giving you more problems than seem cost-effective to fix. If the unit is approaching 10 years in age and major components such as the compressor, reversing valve, accumulator or outdoor coil goes bad, it might makes sense to replace instead of fix. Replacing a compressor for example, is somewhat less expensive than replacing the entire unit, but new units may give you greater efficiency, lower operating costs and a brand new warranty on the whole unit, not just the part to be replaced. When faced with major repairs, we can help you make the right choice.
There are an abundance of possibilities that can cause your HVAC system to freeze up; almost all of them usually need to be corrected by a professional technician.
- Low refrigerant: In some cases, freezing up is initiated by a leak in the refrigerant lines. Weak solder joints, friction from piping rubbing or vibrating against an object, leaking valves or loose fittings can cause leaks. The length of time your system has been installed and the nature and location of the leak are the determining factors on whether to have the system repaired or replaced.
- Dirty evaporator coil: Over time, the evaporator coil will become dirty. On these occasions, the results are similar to those of having a dirty filter. Gradually you will lose airflow, slowly enough that you probably would not realize it until it freezes up or is not cooling adequately. You will need to contact your local Service Experts sales and service center to remedy the problem.
- Defective blower motor or relay: A blower motor running at an improper speed or not running at all can cause freezing. It can also be sporadic, starting at full speed and slowing down after it heats up. Or a relay could cause it to start one time and not the next. In either case, you will need to contact your local Service Experts sales and service center to correct the problem.