Is Your HVAC System Protected From Power Surges?

Power surges can be rare and are not usually a priority concern of homeowners. However, they do happen and can cause a lot of expensive and hassle if they damage items inside the home. Homes and electrical devices were meant to withstand a certain amount of electrical voltage. Though a power surge can be brief, it can cause a significant spike in the amount of electricity an appliance or device receives. This momentary, yet high, spike, can cause significant damage or loss in a home. When we think of electrical power surges, we usually think of electronic equipment like computers, stereo equipment and television sets. However, more costly power surges can affect your home utilities and HVAC system. A power surge can damage or ruin your air conditioning unit, boiler, furnace, and hot water heater. Using power surge protecting power strips and specialized outlets can help protect smaller electronic devices and appliances. However, they do nothing to protect your home utilities or larger appliances.

What causes a power surge to occur?
Power surges can come from several different sources. The most common cause is lightning, with over 20 million cloud to ground lightning strikes per year in the continental United States. They can also be caused by:
• Electrical Storms

• Downed Power Lines

• Faulty Building Wiring

• Power Outages

• Cycling On or Off of larger type appliances

• Maintenance at the power plant

• Bad Electrical Components

• Aged Electrical Components

Home Power Surge Protection
Knowing that power surges can take several paths and do not have to enter through the electrical panel shows that a strong surge protection system should include:

• Protection of the incoming electrical service
• Some type of protection of phone lines and cable TV lines
• Point-of-use surge protectors at sensitive and expensive appliances

If you normally only call your HVAC technician for HVAC maintenance, now is the time to call for another reason; to protect your home utilities. Your HVAC contractor can help you ensure that your home’s HVAC system and other important utilities are protected from an internal or external power surge. Call your trusted HVAC contractor today to learn more.

The Benefits Of NATE Certification

NATE is an independent, non–profit body that certified installation and service technicians using a knowledge–based test. It stands for North American Technician Excellence and is one of the most respected and recognized confirmation of knowledge and experience in the heating, ventilation and air conditioning industry.

What is NATE Certification?

NATE certification tests exemplify real working knowledge of heating and cooling systems, and are meant to certify service technicians in specific knowledge areas. Technicians must take and pass a core exam and one specialty exam of their choice, with the passing grade being 70%. The core exam covers tools, safety, soft skills, total comfort, heat transfer, and electrical questions. On the other hand, one can earn service, installation, or senior certification in one or more specialties including:

· Air distribution

· Air conditioning

· Oil heating

· Gas heating

· Commercial refrigeration

· Light commercial refrigeration

· HVAC efficiency analysis

· Heat pumps

· Hydronics oil

· Hydronics gas

There is a shortage of experienced NATE certified technicians nationwide. Being a certified technician can make all the difference when it comes to homeowner comfort, safety and health. Certified HVAC technicians are more appealing to prospective employers and clients; therefore, an NATE certification is a valuable addition to anyone’s resume.

In addition to benefitting the technician, a contractor with NATE technicians may benefit from the following:

· Increased productivity due to higher quality of work

· Enhanced business’s reputation

· Knowledgeable customers prefer certified technicians

· Companies with NATE technicians are included in the Contractor Consumer Connection Program.

· NATE technicians are often long–term employees

What Does NATE Certified Mean to You as a Customer?

Homeowners who need high quality and reliable installation, maintenance, or repair services of their heating and cooling systems should hire NATE certified HVAC technicians. Specific benefits include:

· NATE certified HVAC technicians have verifiable skills and knowledge required to deliver excellent service; therefore, they provide superior installation, maintenance and repair services.

· A NATE certification is not an industry requirement; rather, it is evidence of a technician’s knowledge and commitment to getting the job done right the first time.

· The installation, repair or maintenance process will meet every specification, ensuring the system will run at peak efficiency, which will save money, time, as well as maintenance and repair calls.

Homeowners should schedule a maintenance inspection to ensure they are getting the best from their AC unit.

Tips To Stay Cool In The Summer

Throughout much of America, summer temperatures can become quite warm. In an ideal world where money and the environment have no consequence, we would run our air conditioning units non-stop and enjoy the cool temperatures of our home without a second thought. However, money and the environment are of consequence. Finding ways to stay cool while minimizing our electric budgets and our impact on the environment can be difficult. However, following these summer cooling tips can help:

Do not allow your home’s interior to become extremely hot. Your air conditioning unit is only meant to cool your house down by about 20 degrees. This means if you allowed your house to get to 100 degrees, you can only expect your A/C to be able to cool it down to 80 degrees, even over a long period of time. Expecting your air conditioning unit to be able to perform in this way will cause it to need replaced soon and only add costs to your energy bills. Even if you are going on vacation, try to keep your thermostat set at a reasonable temperature.

Change the filter on your HVAC system at least once per quarter, or four times per year. This not only is healthier for your family, as they will be breathing cleaner air, but it will ensure that your HVAC system is not being overworked, causing your energy bills to increase.

House cooling tips would not be complete without mentioning home appliances. First, make sure there are no appliances such as lamps or televisions near your thermostat which could cause a falsely high reading, in turn making your air conditioner run unnecessarily. In addition, keep appliances that are not in use unplugged. Many appliances that are on, or even plugged in and not in use can add to your electric bill, and cause an increase in temperature of your home.

Finally, one of the best tips to stay cool in summer is to have a service agreement in place for your air conditioning unit. You should have it checked by a technician at least once per year, before the weather gets warmer. Regular tune ups will decrease untimely and costly breakdowns. Schedule an A/C maintenance inspection today to make sure your unit is running up to par. Additionally, follow these cooling tips for your home to increase your comfort while keeping your electric bill affordable.

Program Thermostat For Savings This Summer

When you want to save money on summer cooling, it is essential that you find the most energy efficient way to cool your home, especially as temperatures begin to rise. Simple steps, such as making sure your air conditioner is serviced on an annual basis can play a major role in lowering utility bills, but there are plenty of other energy saving tips will help keep these costs down. For example, most people give little thought to simple things, such as cooking dinner, but turning on the oven can introduce more heat, making it necessary for your air conditioner to work harder to keep your home cool and comfortable.

Any time you do something that reduces the amount of heat inside your home, you provide a more energy efficient way for your air conditioner to maintain a cooler temperature. Of course, turning off the oven from time-to-time can reduce excess heat in the kitchen, but it also gives you an opportunity to order take-out, cook on the barbecue or use another cooking method, such as stir frying to make your meals.

When trying to reduce excess heat in the house, consider keeping blinds, drapes or shutters closed, especially on windows that have a direct exposure to the heat of the sun. Hours of sunshine beating on your windows can significantly raise inside temperatures, creating an environment where your air conditioning system will have to work harder just to keep your home cool.

An annual preventative maintenance agreement can also be an effective way to manage high cooling costs. When you service your unit once per year, your air conditioning system will be able to deliver more reliable cooling, but it will also be operating at its peak of energy efficiency. An energy efficient cooling system can significantly reduce cooling costs, making energy bills much more manageable. In addition to checking your HVAC equipment for proper refrigerant levels and operation, your service technician will ensure you have clean filters. An air conditioning system with clean filters will function more smoothly and energy efficiently than one that has dirty or clogged filters.

While your current air conditioning system might be in good condition, you might want to consider the benefits of a programmable thermostat. You can have a programmable thermostat installed for your current system, but still enjoy the energy savings of being able to program thermostat to meet your particular cooling needs.

A good quality cooling system relies on dependable equipment as well as professional maintenance. When you have your equipment serviced every year, you will have the benefits of better performance, more energy efficient operation and a longer lifespan. Always keep your HVAC equipment in top operating condition with a professional HVAC technician.

Checking Your Air Conditioning Unit

With warmer weather approaching, it can be a good idea to inspect your air conditioner in order to make sure that it is functioning as it should be. Performing a few quick and easy maintenance and troubleshooting steps in the spring can help you better prepare your unit for the summer. If you notice that something may be wrong with your unit, your first thought may be to call a professional to perform the necessary repairs. Before you think about spending money on that expensive repair, consider performing these few troubleshooting steps, which will help you narrow down the list of potential problems. More often than not, your central air conditioner needs charged in order to work well for the summer weather.

Beginning the troubleshooting process can be as easy as turning the unit on. With your air conditioner active, set the thermostat reading to sixty five degrees and wait roughly fifteen minutes. After your have done so, try and see how the temperature feels in the room. If you notice that there is no visible change, or if you feel as though the room is now warmer, then there is a problem with your air conditioner that will need to be addressed.

Check your fan and see if it is working properly. In order to do so, leave your air conditioner turned on and go outside of the house to take a look at the exterior of the unit. Find where the fans are located and see if they are turning properly. If they are not moving, then the problem may be centered around the motors being burned out, or some other mechanical malfunction that will need to be addressed.

If you find that the fans are working properly, however, then it is important to proceed to the next step of the troubleshooting process. Head back inside and take a look at the thermostat. Checking thermostat readings and seeing if the room feels cooler than what the temperature reads can help you narrow down the problem to a broken thermostat. More often than not, if the thermostat is broken, you will need to call a professional to repair it, as you may not have the tools you need to fix the thermostat yourself.

If you notice that the thermostat reads correctly, however, then it is important to move to the next step. This involves setting your hands in front of the air vents that are responsible for bringing cool air into the home. If you notice that only warm air is entering through these vents, then you will need to have your unit freon charged. This involves hiring the appropriate professionals, who will be able to get your unit charged and ready to function properly for the summer. These specialists can also help keep you informed of the latest maintenance procedures that can help you extend the life of your central air conditioner.

4 Simple Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, most Americans spend as much as 90% of their time indoors. However, the air indoors can have up to five times more pollutants in comparison to the air outdoors. Of course, the former can be a great health hazard. The good news is it is not exactly difficult to improve indoor air quality. Here are some simple ways to achieve that goal. 

Clean Dehumidifiers and Air Conditioners

Most houses in the US have air conditioners and dehumidifies. Over time, dust particles and other air contaminants will clog them and consequently compromise the quality of air you breathe. For adults and children allergic to dust, fresh air indoors can make a huge difference. Hire a professional HVAC technician to clean your air conditioners and humidifiers regularly. 

Ventilate

During the summer, it is wise to open the windows to let fresh air circulate in your home. This will also help control humidity. Take note high levels of humidity tend to encourage mold growth as well as increase dampness. Once again, this can cause health problems such as wheezing and asthma attacks. To be on the safe side, keep the level of humidity inside your home between 30 and 50%. 

Keep your Home Clean

Dust, pollen, pet dander, and dust mites can accumulate indoors on the surface of carpets and household furniture. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter to keep your carpets and floors clean at all times. After that, use a mop to clear any dust particles that your vacuum machine might have left behind. 

Do not Smoke Indoors

Cigarette smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals according to the CDC. Out of these, 70 can cause cancer as well as reduce the quality of air indoors. If you have to smoke, do so outdoors. It is advisable to install air cleaners to get rid of chemical pollutants that might their way into your home. Other ways of minimizing the number of chemical pollutants indoors is by avoiding the use of solvent-based cleaners, wood burning stoves that produce carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, as well as never disturbing asbestos.

All said, whether you spend most of your time at home or at work, the quality of air you breathe can make the difference between good and ill health. Some of the steps that you can take to improve it include keeping your home clean, installing ventilators, and smoking outdoors.

Schedule an AC Checkup Today For a Rest Easy No Sweat Summer

Anyone that has ever experienced a Northern California Summer will testify that having a properly running ac is crucial to comfort. Unfortunately many ac systems show signs of troubles only on the hottest days of the year. In fact these are the days most ac maintenance service companies become the busiest.

Having an ac maintenance service plan set in place can prevent sweating on sweltering hot days. Scheduling an air duct cleaning, and having an extensive check up on the entire ac system is crucial to comfort during a Northern California Summer. Making certain to do these regular maintenance chores before the hottest days of the summer is a wise idea.

Most air conditioner repair service companies recommend that home and business owners not wait until the last minute to have their systems checked out. Simply taking for granted that the system is fine because when it was used the previous summer there were no signs of damage is a mistake that many people make. As most people know, when an appliance decides to go bad, it will often do so in a moment’s notice.

The best way to ensure there is never any problem with your ac unit this Summer is to keep up with the manufacturers recommended maintenance schedule. Many times issues that may arise later can be discovered during these maintenance checkups. Having a regular air conditioner repair & air duct cleaning done are important to keeping an ac unit running perfectly. Ducts that are overloaded with dust and dirt can put a lot of stress on certain components of the ac unit.

Not only does a regular air conditioner repair & cleaning of the duct work benefit the ac unit, it can also contribute to saving energy. In addition it is an action that is important to allergy sufferers. People with allergies or sinus problems benefit the most from clean ducts. Putting a clean filter in the ac unit on a regular basis is another benefit to those who suffer from allergies and sinus problems.

Basically every aspect of ac unit maintenance can be proven to benefit every person breathing the air the unit puts out. Having fresh clean dust free air to breath is great for everyone, whether they suffer from allergies or not. Keeping up with regular ac maintenance service on an ac unit and making a necessary air conditioner repair immediately ensures that the unit will be running strong when those super hot days of summer arrive. So, create a service plan today with a reputable air conditioner maintenance service and rest easy with no sweat.

Improve the Comfort of Your Home with Professional HVAC Services

When you need air conditioner repair in San Jose, finding a company that can deliver quality results is definitely important. However, what many homeowners fail to realize is that their professional heating and cooling contractor can provide much more than quality repairs for their HVAC system. In fact, a leading HVAC contractor will offer a wide range of services, including all types of heating and cooling repairs, air duct cleaning, installation of HVAC equipment, as well as heating and AC maintenance service and air quality solutions.

Keeping your home comfortable with a reliable cooling system requires a dedication to ensuring regular maintenance and care of your equipment. Rising summer temperatures and the stress of maintaining air conditioner repair in San Jose & a comfortable indoor environment can put a strain on even the highest quality cooling system; however, with professional heating and cooling services, including an annual AC maintenance service, homeowners in this area can enjoy the cooling relief of a dependable air conditioning system.

At Air Quality Heating & A/C Inc., professional service technicians are trained to handle all aspects of home comfort. Whether you need your air conditioner fixed in a hurry or you are interested in purchasing an energy efficient cooling system for your place of business, making sure that you hire a company that is committed to providing excellent service is definitely important for air conditioner repair in San Jose. The comfort of your home is something that you should be able to rely on the service performed on your HVAC system is done by certified technicians with the training and experience to deliver the best results in AC maintenance service.

Today, many people suffering from asthma, allergies and other health concerns, ensuring that your home environment is as safe and healthy as possible is certainly important. Fortunately, a leading heating and cooling company will be able to provide professional air duct cleaning & AC maintenance service to minimize airborne contaminants and irritants.

 Many people completely overlook air conditioner repair in San Jose which is the simple things they can do to improve their health. For example, as allergies continue to cause many suffers ongoing discomfort, simple things like having the air ducts in their home professionally cleaned can make a big difference. Of course, you certainly don’t need to be suffering with health concerns in order to benefit from a professional cleaning of your air ducts. After all, your family spends a great deal of time indoors making sure that the air they breathe is as clean as possible.

When you want to be sure that your home has a reliable HVAC system, annual AC maintenance service is definitely an essential task that should not be overlooked; however, at airandheat.net, home comfort services include fast repairs, professional installation of equipment and even some of the most advanced air quality solutions.

Is Air Conditioning Maintenance Really Essential for my AC unit?

The air conditioning system of the home is essential to your loved ones comfort but many home owners do not understand that maintenance service is essential to the workability of the unit. It is important that the unit of the home is inspected and cleaned on a regular basis to ensure the unit is ready to operate every summer season. Many home owners feel like they can skip out on maintenance service and just wait until a repair is needed. However, this can cause you additional issues and cost more money.

The overall workability of your unit as well as energy efficiency and effective coolness of the home is based on the maintenance service you provide your unit. Even the best AC unit models need to be taken care of to avoid breakdown or major issues. The cooling season can be rough on an AC system and maintenance service assures the unit is ready to function properly every summer.

Continued Efficiency

A unit that is maintained on a regular basis will continue to retain its energy efficiency. Energy costs continue to be on the rise and with an energy efficient unit, home owners can continue to save on their utility bills each month. However, when a unit is not maintained on a regular basis, it can lose this efficiency. A unit that is maintained will be able to hold on to its ratio of electrical energy to use only what is needed each and every month.

Longer than Average Shelf-life

Because an air conditioning system is such a large investment, it is expected to last at least a decade or longer. A unit will last even longer when it is maintained on a regular basis. An air conditioning unit should be treated like any other large piece of machinery such as a vehicle. When it comes to your car, you continue to change the oil and have tune-ups to keep the vehicle working well. The same goes for your AC system. If you take care of your unit with regular maintenance, you will be able to extend the life of your unit considerably.

Overall Performance

Overall, maintenance service is needed to continue to provide the best overall cooling performance for your home. You want your air conditioning system to perform well no matter how hot the temperatures are outside. A system that is neglected will not perform well and meet the cooling needs of those inside the home. If you take care of your unit, then the unit will be able to take care of you. The best way to take care of your air conditioning system is to provide regular maintenance service.

To get started, contact your local HVAC provider to find out what maintenance service options are available to you. Schedule a regular maintenance program for your home so that you can continue to have a properly functioning unit that will continue to keep your home cool during the hottest summer months!

Contact us for more details.

3 AC Troubleshooting Tips Every Home Owner Should Know

The air conditioning system is an important part of the home. When the summer temperatures arrive, the home needs to be a cool and comfortable place. The air conditioning system is what helps everyone in the home be comfortable when coming in from outside. It is important that the air conditioning system stays in top quality condition. This means that regular maintenance and cleanings take place so that the unit is ready to continue to operate. However, sometimes a unit will break down. When the unit breaks down, the unit needs to be repaired as quickly as possible. Before you contact a cooling technician, take the time to try these three troubleshooting tips to try and get your unit back on track.

Power Source

The first troubleshooting tip is to check the power source. The power to the unit needs to be operating so the unit can function. First, you can check the electric box and see if a power switch has been thrown. If the switch is flipped, you will need to turn the power back. If this solves the issue, you are not in need of a technician. You can also check the actual on and off button of the unit. Sometimes, home owners forget to turn the unit back on and this can result in the unit not working.

Filter Issues

Another reason your unit may not be working properly is the filtering system. The air filter needs to be changed on a regular basis. Usually once a month to three months, the filter needs to be exchanged with a new filter. When the filter is not clean, the unit is unable to clear the air and provide a clean breathing environment. Make sure to keep up with your filter changing schedule but if you do find that your unit is not working properly, you can change out the filter and see if this provides a solution.

Outside Unit

It is also essential that the home owner checks the outdoor unit. The outdoor portion of your air conditioning unit needs to be operating. The fan needs to be moving the unit have power to the outside portion. Go outside the home and check this portion of your unit. If the fan is not turning then you have an issue. You will need to shut off the unit from the outside as well as turn the power off inside the home. This will ensure that the unit is turned off.

You will then need to contact a local technician. The technician will be able to determine the issue which could be in the motor. Once the problem has been diagnosed, the technician will then work to repair the issue. In no time, you will have a unit that is functioning properly and efficiently.

Try these tips out whenever you have a unit breakdown. Once you check and these steps do not work, you will need to contact your local HVAC provider so that you can have your unit back on track in no time!

For more details, call us on 408-293-7138 or click here.