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Industrial HVAC systems – All You Need To Know

Firstly, what does HVAC stand for? Quite simply – Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. There are systems that heat and cool small homes and industrial systems that service apartment blocks and large office buildings and beyond. A good quality system will provide indoor comfort and thermal control.

Typically, industrial HVAC systems are those with the big boxes you see on the top of a building. These are used in apartment blocks, offices, industrial buildings, and skyscrapers. HVAC helps keep the temperature right as well as maintaining an acceptable humidity level.

HVAC costs generally account for around half of the energy people use within their homes (and offices). This is why it is so important for businesses to make the right decision about their HVAC system. It is required to meet the comfort needs of employees without drawing too much power.

The Available Choices

If you are in a cold environment (or a hot one) you may choose to opt for a single system that will produce the temperature you most need. There are more affordable, however, they are not as efficient as they work at capacity most of the time.

Advanced units provide varying fan speeds which can help reduce power usage, though compared to a multi-stage HVAC system these are inefficient and more expensive.

Zone systems were designed to cool specific areas of a building or home. This works by creating zone valves within the vents and ductwork with dampers that can block airflow to certain areas of the home. Essentially, diverting it to the one (or more) areas and cutting off areas you don’t want to heat or cool. When it comes to industrial HVAC, this is real value as you can easily heat/cool the important areas at the right times without wasting your energy elsewhere.

HVAC systems also provide control over humidity levels – dehumidifiers and humidifiers can be included within the HVAC system, which is helpful for those living in specific environments.

HVAC doesn’t need to be a mystery, it’s an everyday part of life. Anyone who owns and operates a system should have a basic idea of how it operates as this will allow them the ability to make wise decisions.

Heating – the heating aspect of the system produces hot air either through a radiant heat system or a forced air system. In any system, a central source creates the heat and evenly distributes it.

Forced air – a furnace heats the air and disperses it through the ductwork and vents in each room.

Radiant heating – a boiler disperses heat through hot water tubing or electric coils that are installed in the ceiling or flooring.

Geothermal heating – this is all about solar power maintaining a constant temperature through the use of a heat exchanger.

Ventilation – your indoor air quality matters and the ventilation aspect of your system helps to purify the air, circulate it, and control moisture. Every system does this differently. The forced air systems rely on an air filter – if your home does not use this system you can use a dehumidifier/humidifier.

Air Conditioning – in the warm months, your AC will keep you cool. Again, there are different types just as with heating. You may have a window unit, a portable one, ductless or split. They all do the same job, though. Industrial AC tends to be zoned for the most efficient operation possible.

Find out more by giving us a call today.

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Importance Of Getting Your HVAC Regularly Checked By Professionals

If you don’t take your car for a tune-up or take yourself for a physical, you’re not going to expect it to run as well as it should, are you? The same can be said of your HVAC system. If the system isn’t getting attention by way of regular maintenance then you can’t expect it to properly cool or heat your home. Your unit will get overworked and that means loose wires, broken parts, and perhaps, a loss of refrigerant. Sadly, the likelihood is that your HVAC unit will break down when it is used heavily, in other words… when you need it the most.

Regular Maintenance

You can avoid this problem by having your HVAC checked regularly by the professionals. In addition to their maintenance checks, you can do your own. You can check the filters and change them as necessary (generally four times a year), and you can run the unit before the hot/cold weather really kicks in to ensure everything is in working order.

There are a lot of issues that can be prevented by relying on professional checks. Of course, it also provides the professional the chance to check for outdated systems and to upgrade anything that may be lagging behind, whether it’s related to safety or energy conservation. Not to mention how much money you can save on your energy bills just by having an HVAC system that works properly.

Remember, HVAC professionals are busy during the hottest and coldest months, so get ahead of the crowd by doing everything in advance. In addition to the money you save on your bills, regular maintenance will also reduce repair costs. Your system is more likely run smoothly when it is being looked after properly.

Additional Benefits

One benefit of having preventative maintenance is catching issues before they become a real problem. Your costs increase the longer a problem is allowed to run riot as it can often impact how other parts of the unit operate. These issues also affect how effective the unit runs which, as noted above, increases your energy costs.

Typically, a preventative maintenance visit will include a complete inspection of the electrical system, as well as the other parts, including a filter change.

How do you know how to schedule the maintenance visits? Well, it’s obvious when your HVAC system needs a repair because it doesn’t run properly. We often let the maintenance side of things slip under the radar because we don’t notice the little things that are causing the system problems.

The longer it goes without the more likely it is to run into issues that require repair. Have your HVAC system checked regularly to ensure that it runs smoothly. You can speak to your HVAC professional about what maintenance checks are right for your system. If your bills have recently increased, if your home isn’t the right temperature or you’re hearing noises that weren’t there before… your HVAC system needs a check-up.

Call the professionals if you need any advice!

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How To Get The Most Out Of Your Heating In Winter

There’s nothing worse than struggling to heat your home in the winter because you’re afraid of the energy bill at the end of the month. It’s going to cost you a lot more to run that heating if it isn’t in good condition or you’re not taking the proper steps to maximize it. Let’s get your system up to speed.

Regular Maintenance

If you want your system to run smoothly and efficiently then you need to look after it so it can look after you. That means regular maintenance throughout the year, but also having a professional come check it over before the change in season truly begins. Following summer there is a lot of buildup in the unit which just adds more stress to it making it less efficient.

The technician will check the filters, tighten belts and bolts, and clean your system properly so it’s ready to go.

System Upgrade

Your system may be outdated, but that doesn’t mean you need a brand new one. Your HVAC professional may be able to help you by providing the system with various upgrades to improve its efficiency. This includes zoning, the installation of a humidifier, a thermostat you can program or using a more efficient filter.

Insulation Issues

The insulation in your home plays a major role in how efficient your heating system is. There are different ways you can improve this. The first and most cost-efficient is to do a full walk of the doors and windows in your home and ensure they are properly sealed and there are no drafts. The next walk should include attic, crawlspaces, and basements to make sure there are no small cracks which could allow for cold air to enter or warm air to escape. Don’t forget to check the outer walls for cracks to seal. Once you have done that you can shore up your insulation if necessary. This doesn’t just help the heating situation, it also allows you to manage humidity, too. You may also need to check the ductwork for cracks or areas that are allowing air to escape.

Other tips

Other helpful ways to get the most from your heating system include curtains. You can hang curtains over doors as well as windows, so if you have a particularly problematic door/window choose a heavy curtain to block some of the problem out.

Generally, your air filters should be replaced four times a year, however, changing it monthly during the times you use it the most could make a major difference to your energy bill and the temperature in your home. Don’t forget to have a full system checkup at least once a year. You can try insulating your pipes with a blanket or some type of other cover. It just means that it won’t need to work as hard to heat your water. It could also prevent burst pipes.

As a bonus: a dirty refrigerator can make a difference to the overall temperature of your home. Yes, really. Just take a look at the back of it for the condenser coils. If they are dirty then your fridge is working too hard and increasing your energy bill. Check the seals on your fridge, too, this is just another way you’re affecting your energy bills.

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Reasons To Get Radiant Floor Heating This Winter

It’s a cold morning and you’re ready to get out of bed. Your feet touch the floor and you recoil in shock! It’s like stepping out into the snow, barefoot!

Waking up on a cold winter’s morning can be a dreaded thought, knowing that when your feet leave your toasty bed and touch the icy floor, your body wants to retreat straight back under the comfort of your duvet, and never get back out.

Although a lot of homes don’t actually feature built in radiant floor heating, there are a number of reasons you should definitely consider it as an option for your home this winter.

What is radiant floor heating?

Radiant floor heating systems deliver heat directly to the floor of a house. The systems run on radiant heat transfer, which is the delivery of heat straight from the hot surface by means of infrared radiation. There are actually three main styles of radiant floor heat, including electric radiant floors, hydronic (or liquid) radiant floors and radiant air floors.

There are many obvious benefits to radiant floor heating and a quality radiant floor heating system can change your life during winter by providing you with supreme comfort. Although the upfront costs of installing a radiant floor heating system to your home, the overall long-term savings will be worth it, as will the warmth beneath your feet when winter hits.

Here are some of the best reasons you should install radiant floor heating this winter.

Comfort and Quiet

Walking barefoot through your home will no longer be feared. Year-round total comfort is provided with radiant floor heating. There will also be no more noise from fans, blowers and radiators. Radiant floor heating is the silent alternative, so you’ll not only be comfortable, you’ll be able to enjoy that comfort in silence.

Efficient and Clean

Around 30% of heat is lost with forced air heating systems. Fortunately radiant floor heating is more efficient, because more heat is retained in the structure of your floor. So not only will you be saving energy, you’ll be saving money as well when your utilities bills come in!

Not only is it more energy efficient, but indoor air quality is concerning for most people, and radiant floor heating does not circulate the air like fan forced systems. This means allergens are not spread throughout the home.

Aesthetics

Radiant floor heating systems are completely concealed so the aesthetics of the inside of your home won’t be compromised. You don’t have to arrange the furniture around it, just enjoy it!

Zoning and Versatility

Multiple thermostats can be fitted throughout your home and connected to a control system that allows you to alter the heat in different zoned areas of your home. There are many options when it comes to radiant floor heating and your local professional installers can give you specific advice to suit your needs and home size.

Radiant floor heating systems are one of the most efficient heating methods and one of the most environmentally friendly options.

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Benefits of Installing Chimney Liners

A chimney liner is a critical part of every chimney if you want to ensure that your chimney not only has a longer life span, but also that you’re getting the best benefits from it (and none of the health dangers).

In gas, oil, or solid fuel burning fireplaces, your chimney liner helps guide the combustion by-products away from the chimney itself. 

Chimney liners cover the inside of the flue, which is the area inside your chimney that directs smoke and gases from your fireplace or fuel burning appliance, and vents them safely outside your home. Chimney liners come in many different materials, including clay tile, stainless steel, cement, and aluminium. Each different material serves its purpose; however, some materials will differ from others depending on its use. And it depends on the type of chimney you have, and the effects you expect as to which liner you should be installing.

Whatever type you choose, these are some simple benefits of installing a chimney liner.

Safety

A chimney liner will make your home safer for only a small outlay. If you have an unlined chimney that is aging, cracked tiles or missing filling can allow harmful gases and smoke into your living areas, attic or ceiling, causing harm to you and your family. Chimney liners help to eliminate leaks. 

A quality chimney liner will also protect your chimney from destructive fire by-products. The liner is a sealed unit from bottom to top to ensure smoke, creosote, carbon dioxide from burning fuels are forced outside without contacting the actual chimney structure. 

Protection

You can insulate a chimney liner to prevent excess creosote condensation within your chimney. Liners can be both covered with insulation before you insert it into the flue, or by filling any dead space between the liner and flue after installation. An insulated flue will also prevent excessive cold air coming back down the chimney when you are not burning a fire. 

A chimney fitted with liners, is easier to clean and less expensive to maintain than an unlined flue.

Some fuel burning appliances need stainless steel liners to be able to properly vent hot gases that don’t condense before reaching the top of the flue. Stainless steel liners are better for lining chimneys used with corrosive condensation caused from efficient appliances.

Other Great Reasons

A chimney liner will improve your home’s energy efficiency. Insulated liners not only reduce cold downdrafts but also improve chimney draft because hotter gases draw better than colder gases. Good draft delivers better fuel efficiency through better combustion. 

And finally, chimney liners are simple to install. Replacing clay liners inside your chimney is not necessary if you install liners inside the flue.

Your best bet is to have a professional company do the installation for you so that you know you’re getting quality service at a great price. That way you chimney lining is bound to last a lot longer, through the peak winter period where keeping warm is essential; to the summers where your chimney is more likely to remain stagnant.

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5 Important Facts About Oil To Gas Conversion

If you are still using an outdated oil heating system, you might be wondering if you’re getting the best benefits out of your heating. One of the most common changes in American households today, it changing from oil heating to gas; and there are a number of reasons why you might want to consider making the change as well.

Although there are usually capital costs associated with a conversion from oil to gas, the long-term savings (and the benefits of gas) far outweigh the costs. If you’re still not sure, here are 5 important facts about oil to gas conversions that you should know.

1. Costs

Oil burning heating systems are far more expensive to run than gas powered systems. Changing from oil to gas is not a cheap project, however the total conversion costs will depend on many factors. No matter how high the cost of a conversion is, it will quickly be offset by your hugely declining annual heating bill. The average gas heated home can save over $1,500 each year on heating, meaning your new system could pay for itself in as little as 3 years.

2. Gas Is Far Better for The Environment Than Oil

Natural gas burns far cleaner than oil, and it produces far less by-products in comparison to oil. The lower environmental impact is enough to make wood burning fireplaces less popular than ever, as the smoke that is produced is harmful to the environment, as well as your home. Converting to gas will lower your carbon footprint, making it a clear choice for a clean future.Gas doesn’t need to be transported across the world, unlike oil, which makes it far more environmentally friendly in its production processes.

3. Versatility

Gas is a versatile fuel. You can use it to heat everything from power appliances like heaters, to swimming pools, stoves, ovens for replacing wood fireplaces. It can be used for more than just a single purpose within your home, and for that fact alone, is worth the conversion of your heating system.

4. Long Term Supply

There are huge reservoirs of gas through the US and Canada meaning there is more than enough supply to meet the high demand. Because of high demand, and high supply levels, gas is going to remain a cheaper option for a long time. Unlike oil, gas supply is easier to access than oil reservoirs, and is has far less distance to travel to get to your furnace.

5. Conveniently Delivered

Gas is delivered by pipe, rather than a physical delivery like oil. This means that even in the worst possible weather you can imagine, you won’t be stressing about having it delivered or pre-paying for oil.

Put simply, gas is generally a far better option than oil. If you want to make the change, or get some advice on whether it’s the right decision for you, give us a call and we’d be happy to discuss your options and help you decide if you should make the conversion.

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3 Things You Need to Know About AC Zoning

When it comes to fitting out your home or office with air conditioning, one factor that rates high on importance is the zoning of where the air will be needed and how to get it there.

Some areas of your home or office may need extra heating or cooling than the rest of the building, and working out how to get the right amount of air at the right temperature to the right place is truly a science. On a hot day, the last thing you want is to be stuck in your home office in the heat, while your lounge room is icy cold. And you probably don’t want too much cold air hitting your bathroom while you’re having a shower, with heat lingering over your bed!

HVAC Zoning Is Adaptable

When you’re bearing in mind the air quality inside your home or office space, HVAC Zoning is one of the best ways to utilize your indoor air.

Because not all areas of your home or office will be used at the same time, HVAC zoning has some serious advantages. Zoning allows you to heat one area, and cool another based on your requirements. This is a very useful tool when it comes to changing sun positions within your home or office area. Rooms that catch a lot of sun will require more heating and vice versa for rooms that don’t get as much. Most people are different when it comes to feeling heat and cold, and when it comes to personal comfort, HVAC systems make tailoring the temperature a simple process.

HVAC Zoning is Cost Effective, Energy Efficient

HVAC Zoning set up correctly is far more energy efficient than standard AC systems, which of course will save you money. You will have more control over the temperature in each room of your home or office and the benefits will be seen when your utility bills arrive.

Although there is a larger initial outlay for supply and installation of HVAC systems, they will provide you with far better value for money and long-term savings on your energy bills.


Zoning Your Home or Office Is Simple

There are many great options when it comes to zoning each room in your home or office.

Two zone option– equally sized spaces can be configured to manage around 70% of the air that your HVAC system produces.

Three zone option– A three zone option will manage around 50%.

Four zone option – A four zone option will need more work, and duct expansion may be required, so ask you expert local installer for advice on the best option for your space.

No matter how many zones you will require, each zone will be wired to one central panel, so you can easily control all the zones from the one place.

If you want to know more, give us a call and we’ll be happy to give you advice and help with the installation of a system that hits all the important zoning areas.

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The Importance of Chimney Lining For The Jolly Old Man

Ho ho ho … Merry Christmas! That’s the call of the jolly old man when he comes sliding down your chimney – so why not make the experience more comfortable for Santa, and more beneficial to you all year round? If you’re wondering how – we have a great solution, chimney lining!

Aside from being the best place in your home for Santa to come in, so he can leave those pressies, eat those cookies and drink that milk; before he goes back up again – the chimney is actually a very important part of your entire home heating system. So keeping it in perfect working order is not only good for you – but it helps everyone enjoy the festive season a little bit more!

Inside The Chimney

You might not realise it, but taking care of the interior of your chimney is actually extremely important. Over time, the lining inside the chimney can deteriorate and degrade – and this can lead to cracks and crumbles. And the last thing you want when you light a nice hot fire to keep you warm while sipping your eggnog is for smoke and flue gases to escape directly into the home.

That’s why the liner is so important. It acts as a protective layer that helps to retain heat within the chimney itself, so the walls don’t overheat. In other words, the lining keeps you, your home and your belongings safe from fire! Not only that though, it also keeps smoke out of the home – ensuring you get a nice big cloud over your home rather than inside your lounge room.

When To Get It Fixed

If you’ve moved into a new home, no doubt the liner in the chimney is new as well, so you likely won’t be facing any problems for a while. However, if you’ve just bought a home, or you can’t remember the last time you got the liner replaced (or even checked), it’s probably time to do something about it.

Other reasons you might want to have liner installed or replaced include: if your chimney was lined with fired clay that has started to crack or is getting old; if you have had a new furnace installed (or you’re considering getting one); or if there has been a fire in the home caused by the chimney – this means the current liner isn’t doing its job.

Things to Consider

There are generally three types of liner that are used. These range from Heavy to High Performance Light, to Light – and each of these will cost you a different price to have them installed. Talk to your installation professional to see which one suits your needs the best. The heavier it is; the stronger (and more expensive).

Each of the types of liner has benefits – the key is that you have a liner installed in the first place. It could mean safety for you and your belongings, and a smooth entrance and exit for the jolly old man on December 24.
If you want to have the lining in your chimney checked, or you need new lining installed, give our team a call today.

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How Often Do I Need To Get My Heating System Serviced?

There’s nothing worse on a cold New Jersey morning than waking up in your warm heated bed, to find the house is as cold as the snow outside because your heating system has gone on the blink! Often, getting a repairman to come and fix it can be tough – and expensive – particularly during the festive season! So your best bet is to plan ahead, and ensure your heating system is getting a regular service.

When was the last time you had your heating system serviced by a professional team of heating experts? If it’s been more than 12 months, you need to read on.

Different systems require services at different times, so we’ve come up with this list of heating repair times so you can be ready for a toasty winter in the home!

Gas Heaters

You want to have these checked annually by a registered professional who has the right licenses to be checking and repairing gas appliances. Aside from not having heating, gas appliances can actually cause more harm than good when they aren’t in top working order – and the last thing you want is carbon monoxide in the air.

HVAC

You need a qualified technician to check your unit at least once a year – seasonally is more often recommended if you use the cooling function as well. You want to have someone check that the unit is clear of any rubbish, there is no debris around it (outside), and that the filters are clean. It is usually recommended that the filters themselves are replaced at least once every quarter – but it is worth talking to your heating professional to see what they think when they come out to service your system.

Furnace Heating Systems

We recommend you get these serviced according to the manufacturer’s instructions, but if you don’t have those handy – it’s worth getting someone out to check them at least once a year. Because furnace systems come in gas, oil or electric; the recommendations will be different. If you’re not sure, give our team a call to give you the right advice.

The key is, you want to ensure your system is working all year round – so that you are guaranteed heat during the colder months. You don’t want to wake up on Christmas morning with ice in your hair because your heater has blown overnight! Ensure your filters and fans are cleaned at least once a year for starters, and if you want to check the system yourself – follow the manufacturer’s manual. You might even find some good safety tips in there.

Take notice of what’s around your heating system, whether inside or out. Ensure you keep any materials, boxes, furniture well away from the indoor furnace; and keep snow, trees and other debris away from the outdoor HCAV system. And most importantly, if your heater runs on gas and you smell something strange – open the windows, walk outside to a safe distance away and call an emergency technician to come and check the system.

If you want to know more, why not give us a call today? We’d be happy to help your feet stay warm this winter.

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5 Benefits Of Humidifiers For Your Indoor Air Quality

When winter arrives the air suddenly dries out and it leaves us with dry, itchy skin, irritated noses, sore throats, coughs, and overall irritation. A humidifier can give your home some of that much-needed moisture back and plenty of benefits along with it.

If the humidity levels in your home are too low it makes the risk of diseases being transmitted greater, so if you want to limit the sharing of the cold and flu while protecting wood within the home and keeping your skin soft… then you may find these other benefits particularly interesting.

1. Prevent Airborne Viruses From Spreading
Keeping your humidity level around 45% is considered the optimum and that alone can get rid of a vast majority of airborne viruses in your home. In fact, studies have been so convincing that researchers are now trying to increase the levels of humidity in hospitals across America. This would not only protect already ill patients from further illness, but it would protect visitors, nurses, and doctors as well. So, you can say goodbye to the entire family getting the cold with a humidifier.

2. Goodbye Dry, Chapped Skin
One of the most frustrating aspects of winter is what the dry air does to your skin. You know it needs hydration just as much (if not more) as the rest of your body, yet the dry conditions steal it all. You end up with dry skin, bloodshot eyes, an itchy nose, and chapped lips. Even when you don’t have the cold you feel as though you do. A humidifier can help you with that as it adds moisture to the air.

3. Relieve Allergy Symptoms
What better way to relieve allergy symptoms than with a humidifier. Once upon a time, the old school numbers only contributed to the spread of allergens as they created too much moisture. However, the modern models avoid that issue as they can be set to a lower level. It provides relief from inflammation in the nasal passages as well as the throat and keeps allergens at bay.

4. Relieve Sinusitis
Dry air makes your sinuses work harder, suddenly they aren’t draining properly, so if you’ve been wondering why you constantly feel congested… that’s why and you need a humidifier.

5. Faster Healing
You can rely on humidifiers to keep your throat and nasal passages well lubricated, so not only will that relieve allergy symptoms, but it will also improve asthma, and you’ll find yourself recovering from the cold much quicker than before. If you have particularly bad allergies you will notice the difference immediately as many have been designed to also purify the air. Just another benefit is the lack of nosebleeds you will experience, as those well lubricated nasal passages won’t be as prone to springing a leak.

A happy bonus for everyone else in the home is that humidifiers can also alleviate snoring. That’s not the only reason everyone will get a better sleep, though, it’s far more comfortable to sleep in a moist environment.