Air Conditioning Experts Blog : Archive for January, 2015

Can I Get Zone Control Without Any Ducts?

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Zone control is a great thing: it allows you to have warmer air in your bedroom and cooler air in the kitchen – if you choose. How? With a zone control system, your home is divided into individual zones in which each has its own thermostat. But how can you have zone control in your home if you don’t have ductwork? With the installation of ductless air conditioning in your Lakeland home.

The Components

A ductless system is comprised of an outdoor unit that holds the compressor and condenser, and indoor blowers (up to 4 per outdoor unit) that deliver the cool air. The outdoor unit connects to the individual blowers by a conduit in an exterior wall. The indoor blowers are mounted in the rooms or areas that need cooling. Each indoor blower operates as a separate unit, allowing you to set different temperature per unit, give you zone control for those areas in which you have a blower.

Other Benefits

There are other benefits a ductless air conditioning system can offer you and your home:

  • Ability to both cool and heat – ductless AC’s can either be a straight air conditioner or work with a heat pump, which will both heat and cool your home.
  • Energy efficiency – zone control means using only the amount of cooling you need; as such, you’ll likely reduce your cooling and with it, your energy usage. You also won’t have to worry about air loss because there’s no ductwork.
  • Flexible placement – indoor blowers are about 35” long and can be mounted flush against walls, hung from ceilings or placed easily above doorways and windows. All that’s needed is an exterior wall to connect to the outdoor unit.
  • Easy to extend for expansions – if you add on to your home, extending the cooling to your new space is much easier than a ducted system: as long as you aren’t overloading the outdoor unit’s capacity, all you have to do is add another indoor blower to the new space.

To ensure that your ductless air conditioning in Lakeland goes as it should, call the experts you can count on for all your air conditioning needs: Air Conditioning Experts.

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Ways an Air Conditioning System Can Improve after Maintenance

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Ostensibly, the reason that homeowners call for air conditioning maintenance is because something is wrong with their system. Reparative maintenance is all well and good, but what about all the little ways that your air conditioner improves that you never really think about. There are quite a few improvements that your HVAC technician makes to your air conditioning system that never seem to get the attention that they deserve. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of those improvements right now.

More Efficient Coils

The evaporator and condenser coils are vital parts of your air conditioning system. It is they that move heat out of your home to cool the air, and if not properly maintained they won’t be able to do their jobs as well. During average air conditioner maintenance, these coils are cleaned of any dust that might prevent them from moving heat properly. If your air conditioner seems to be moving cooler air than normally after maintenance, this is one of the reasons.

Improved Electrical Connections

The connection between the thermostat and the air conditioner is a pretty important thing, without which the system would not be able to function. Over time, however, this connection starts to weaken. Connectors get shaken loose for one reason or another, dust accumulates on the circuits and causes problems. There are a dozen tiny things that can make the thermostat’s control over the air conditioner more tenuous. During regular air conditioning maintenance, the HVAC technician will inspect and tighten these connections, improving the thermostat’s control over the air conditioner.

Clean Air Filter

The air filter is a part designed to prevent dust and debris from getting into the air conditioner, while still allowing air to flow freely through the system. If not changed every few months, however, the air filter can get clogged and begin to cause issues. Mainly, a clogged air filter restricts the flow of warm air into the air conditioner to be cooled. This causes the coils to actually freeze over, which can cause the air conditioner to break down. The air filter is always replaced during a maintenance visit, preventing this issue.

If you’d like to know more, call Air Conditioning Experts. We provide air conditioning system maintenance throughout Lithia, FL.

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What’s Involved with Commercial Heating Installation?

Thursday, January 15th, 2015

As an owner or manager of a commercial property, your job is quite demanding, and it can be hard to find the time to take care of some of the necessities that keep your business going. When it comes to installing large appliances, you may not think too much about it, leaving the job up to the first contractor you find who is willing to do the job. But there is a lot that goes into commercial heating installation, so you should take the time to find a quality contractor who will discuss your options with you and help you to choose a system that suits your business’s needs and budget.

Finding a Contractor

Of course, your first step (and the most important) will be finding someone to install the new unit. You should make sure that the contractors you consider offer commercial heating services. If the contractor is inexperienced with commercial installation, it’s time to continue your search. Residential installers are simply too unfamiliar with the complex zoning needs of a business as well as the common installation practices of a packaged heating and AC system. An amateur will also likely be unfamiliar with the standard safety and installation procedures involved and may be a liability to your business.

Choosing the Right System

And you’ll want to make sure you get the right type of unit for your business’s heating needs. This includes choosing whether you want a packaged air conditioner and furnace or even a packaged heat pump with the ability to both heat and cool. A packaged system is installed in one piece and is usually located on the rooftop. This is different from most types of heating and AC units because every piece is located in a single cabinet and connects directly to the ductwork.

Installation

Finally, the technician must install the unit safely and securely, taking into account any particular zoning needs as well. The right technician can do the job quickly, and stay out of the way as much as possible, so that you can get back to business soon.

Call Air Conditioning Experts for commercial heating services in Valrico, from installation to repairs and comprehensive maintenance.

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Why Is My Gas Furnace So Noisy?

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Furnaces, all heating systems, really, develop a number of odd quirks as they get older. In the case of furnaces, various sounds can develop over time in various parts of the system. Some of these noises are harmless, some are not. Some can actually indicate a very serious problem with your furnace. Let’s take a look at some of the noises that a gas furnace can exhibit, and whether or not you should be worried about them.

Banging/Creaking

Banging and creaking noises are especially common in colder environments with metal ductwork. As the warm air moves through the cold ducts, they expand due to the heat. This can cause random banging and creaking as the ducts expand and contract. However, there is another cause for banging noises that is not so harmless.

As the furnace burns gas, leftover carbon particles can build up on the burner assembly. This isn’t a problem in small amounts, but if it builds up enough it can actually cause the burners to fire intermittently or not at all. If a dirty burner finally does ignite after the gas flow starts, it can give off a loud bang.

Squealing/Grinding

Squealing and grinding noises are almost certainly located in the furnace’s air handler. The fan belt in the air handler connects the motor to the fan itself. As the belt stretches and wears out from use, it can cause a loud squealing sound when the furnace starts up. You should get this checked right away, as the air handler cannot operate if the fan belt breaks.

Grinding noises are often the result of bearings in the air handler motor losing their lubrication. When the bearings dry up, the motor has to fight against more and more friction in order to rotate the fan. This friction is what is causing the grinding sound. If it isn’t fixed, the motor will eventually burn out from the stress.

If you’d like to know more about what noises in your furnace could mean, call Air Conditioning Experts. We provide heating repair services throughout the Lakeland, FL area.

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3 Gas Furnace Components You Should Know about

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

Gas furnaces are the most common type of home heating system in the country. They’re versatile, fairly cheap, and their parts are easy to service and replace. Though you should always hire a professional to service your heating system if it develops a repair need, there are a few components that you yourself should know about. Knowing about these 3 components can help you take better care of your gas furnace, and even avoid repair needs in the future.

Air Filter

Every gas furnace is equipped with an air filter, which is installed in the air return of the central unit. The air filter, as you may have guessed, is responsible for filtering the air entering the furnace. If the air filter goes longer than a few months without being replaced, however, it can become clogged and restrict the air flow into the furnace. When that happens, the furnace can overheat and cause damage to itself. You should always change your air filter every 2-3 months. If you don’t know how to do so, any professional HVAC technician can do it for you.

Heat Exchanger

The heat exchanger is responsible for actually heating the air being circulated throughout your house, as well as venting toxic combustion byproducts into the exhaust flue. As the heat and combustion byproducts travel through the heat exchanger, the heat radiates out of the tube and into the air stream, while the toxic gases remain trapped inside until they reach the exhaust flue.

Over years of use, however, the heat exchanger will expand and contract with the heat until it develops cracks. This can cause all sorts of issues, including venting toxic gas into the home. The best way to stop this from happening is to have your system inspected regularly.

Pilot Light

The pilot light is the ignition system for your furnace. It can either be an older standing pilot, or a newer electric intermittent pilot. Regardless, it is this system that actually starts the furnace so it can heat. Problems can often develop in the pilot light system, whether the flame keeps blowing out on an older pilot light or a newer electronic one fails to generate a spark. If your system isn’t starting, the pilot light should be one of the first things you check.

If you’d like to know more, call Air Conditioning Experts. We service gas furnaces throughout Lakeland.

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12 Grapes for 12 Months: An Unusual New Year’s Tradition

Thursday, January 1st, 2015

Across the world, many cultures have specific traditions to celebrate the transition from the old year to the new. In the U.S. and Canada, we associate New Year’s with the ball in Times Square, kissing at the stroke of midnight, resolutions, and singing “Old Lang Syne.” But for many Spanish-speaking countries, one of the key traditions has to do with eating grapes as fast as possible.

The “twelve grapes” tradition comes from Spain, where it is called las doce uvas de la suerte (“The Twelve Lucky Grapes”). To ensure good luck for the next year, people eat one green grape for each of the upcoming twelve months. However, you cannot just eat the grapes during the first day of the new year any time you feel like it. You must eat the twelve grapes starting at the first stroke of midnight on Nochevieja (“Old Night,” New Year’s Eve) as one year changes to another. And you have to keep eating: with each toll of midnight, you must eat another grape, giving you about twelve seconds to consume all of them. If you can finish all dozen grapes—you can’t still be chewing on them!—before the last bell toll fades, you will have a luck-filled new year.

Where did this tradition come from? No one is certain, although it appears to be more than a century old. One story about the Twelve Lucky Grapes is that a large crop of grapes in 1909 in Alicante, Spain led to the growers seeking out a creative way to eliminate their surplus. But recent research through old newspapers shows that perhaps the tradition goes back almost thirty years earlier to the 1880s, where eating grapes was meant to mock the upper classes who were imitating the French tradition of dining on grapes and drinking champagne on New Year’s Eve.

It can be difficult to consume grapes this fast, and the lucky grapes of New Year’s Eve have seeds in them, making the job even trickier. (Seedless grapes are not common in Spain the way they are over here.) For people to manage eating all the grapes before the last stroke of midnight requires swallowing the seeds as well and only taking a single bite of each grape.

Oh, there is one more twist to the tradition: you have to be wearing red undergarments, and they have to be given to you as a gift. The origins of this part of the tradition are even more mysterious, and it’s anybody’s guess why this started.

Whether you go for the grape challenge or find another way to ring in New Year’s, all of us at Air Conditioning Experts hope you have a great start to the year and a fruitful 2015.

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