Do you have questions about our HVAC services? Check out these frequently asked questions to see if you can find the answers. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please call us at 215-960-9309.
HVAC stands for Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning. These three functions are closely interrelated and work together to provide thermal comfort and acceptable indoor air quality for your home.
A fan draws indoor air in through vents, called return grills, located throughout your home. The air travels through ducts that run to your system’s air handler, where it is heated or cooled and then circulated throughout your home via supply vents, or registers, in your walls, ceilings and floors.
While this will vary depending on how much you use your system, it’s a good idea to check your filter every one to three months. If it appears dirty, then it’s time for a replacement. At a minimum, you should change filters at the start of the heating and cooling seasons.
If your current HVAC unit is 10-15 years old, or if it breaks down frequently, you should consider replacing it with a new, more efficient system. A new heating and air conditioning system could save you up to 50 percent on energy costs, besides reducing the need for costly repairs on an older system. Newer units may also offer a better degree of comfort within your home.
Since January 2006, all residential air conditioners sold in the United States must have a rating of at least 13 SEER. SEER is the abbreviation for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, and it is a U.S. government standard energy rating that reflects the efficiency of your cooling system at various temperatures. An EER is short for Energy Efficiency Ratio and is calculated using one constant temperature, typically 95 degrees. Both ratings should be considered in choosing cooling products. The rating is a ratio of the cooling output divided by the power consumption and measures the cooling performance of the system. To qualify as an Energy Star efficient model, it must have a rating of 14 SEER or higher.
Replacing your AC system is one of the biggest financial decisions you will make. When choosing a contractor, pick a company to install the unit based on the quality of their service rather than just the price. The name brand of the equipment is not as important as the technician installing it. A good contractor will help you choose a new unit that is properly sized for your home. Do some homework, pick a quality contractors that you can trust, and you will have a successful installation that will bring you years of comfort.
Confusingly, the unit has little to do with weight, as it is used in everyday language. One ton of refrigeration is the term used to refer to 12,000 BTUs/hour (British Thermal Units/Hour) of cooling effect. Thus, a condensing unit with a cooling capacity of 60,000 BTUs/hour is said to have a capacity of 5 tons.
Since July 1, 1992, it has been illegal to release refrigerants into the atmosphere, either intentionally or accidentally, because they can cause severe damage to the ozone layer. When refrigerants such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are removed, they should be recycled to clean out any contaminants and returned to a usable condition.
The portion of the Clean Air Act that applies to the HVAC industry encourages the development of ozone-friendly substitutes for chemicals that contain ozone-destroying CFCs. The chemical refrigerant of choice for more than four decades, referred to as R-22, is in the HCFC category, which is a category of chemicals that is less damaging to the atmosphere. R-22 is widely used in heat pumps and AC condensing units to heat and cool homes. Today, a refrigerant called R-410A is preferred because of its ozone-friendly properties.
Radon is an invisible, radioactive atomic gas that results from the radioactive decay of radium, which may be found in rock formations beneath buildings or certain building materials. Radon is probably the most pervasive serious hazard for indoor air quality in the United States and may be responsible for thousands of deaths from lung cancer each year. Proper testing can be done to measure the presence of radon and to minimize it effects.