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What Does HVAC Stand For And Why Are They So Important

HVAC Systems are one of the most crucial elements to any home, business or apartment block when it comes to comfort. If you are looking for a way to increase comfort levels while remaining energy efficient, HVAC Systems are the best solution. Over time, the installation of an HVAC system will save you money, will be far more reliable and better for the environment than other types of heating and cooling options for your building.

What Is An HVAC System?

HVAC is the shortened version of heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning. HVAC systems are complete integrated systems for a building that allow you to heat, cool and ventilate with the use of a single interface or controller.
What Are The Advantages Of Having An HVAC System?

The biggest advantages of having an HVAC system are that you can control the temperatures throughout your building with one controller. You can also have different temperatures throughout the building through zoning options. You could have one room that is 20 degrees different to the room next to it, all from the one control point.

What are the main parts of an HVAC System?

The three main elements of an HVAC System are the heating element, an air conditioning unit and a ventilation system. Modern systems also integrate a cleaning element and an air filtration system as well.

Heating

Heating is typically performed with a furnace or boiler, which will include a piping system that delivers a heated liquid that delivers the heat or a ducted system for forced air HVAC Systems. Often the heating system can be connected to the hot water system of your home, meaning the hot water that comes out of your taps comes from the same source as your HVAC heater.

Cooling

The cooling element of your HVAC system does the opposite of the heating element. It removes the warm air from your home and converts it into cold air through a condenser system.

Ventilation

Ventilation is usually either ducted or forced through a wall unit and can also be natural. Forced air systems are most commonly used in modern systems as they allow the air to become filtered as well.

One of the best ways to save money is by installing the fully integrated system up front that features all the above functions. The outlay will be a little bigger than a standard wall-mounted system, but the benefits are far greater with a fully-integrated HVAC System. Over the course of ten years, the savings you will make on energy use compared to other types of air conditioning or heating systems will pay for the upfront costs three-fold. It makes sense to install a system that does everything from the one function, especially if you are energy conscious.

When you want to know more about HVAC systems, talk to a professional. Our team can help you to find a system that suits your household or business requirements. Get in touch with our friendly team today!

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Signs Of A Reputable HVAC Repair Company

HVAC systems are becoming more popular every year and for a good reason. They are highly effective, energy efficient systems that heat, cool and ventilate your home all year round, for a fraction of what other systems can cost you. Knowing what systems are best for your home or business comes with knowledge and understanding of different types of systems and which ones are better for a specific space. Professional HVAC installation and maintenance companies are plentiful, however, knowing which ones are the best can often be difficult to gage.

A company may supply the best available products however if their maintenance and customers service elements are lacking, then you could be starting the process over again before you even begin. Here are five things you should look for, to know if you have found a reputable HVAC repair company.

Licensed And Insured

Hiring any contractor means that there are chances things can go wrong during installation or repairs, so you need to ensure your repairer or installer is insured. If things go wrong and they are not insured, the costs to fix any problems will most likely end up coming out of your pocket when they are no longer contactable.

It’s important also to make sure they are licensed to carry out the scope of work you need to be performed. HVAC systems are a solid investment for your home, and if a licensed contractor does not install them it could mean that warranties may be void, and you may end up having to cover extra costs you didn’t know about if things go wrong.

Company Vehicles, And Spare Parts On Hand

Although some of the best installers and repair companies work alone and aren’t always in a large team, one way to ensure you have a quality team on board is through their availability of spare parts, and the size of their team.

If you are looking at hiring a larger company, you will want to know they have spare parts on board for your HVAC system when they arrive on site, so your time and money isn’t wasted. Although no company will ever hold ALL spare parts, commonly replaced items should be on hand to ensure they can replace parts with just one visit.

24-Hour On Call Service

Because you can’t tell when your HVAC system will fail, having a company which offers 24 hours a day service may just come in handy in the middle of summer or winter if your system breaks during the night.

Offers You Preventative Maintenance Options

Any reputable company will offer the options of preventative maintenance to ensure your system doesn’t break down. If they suggest your system should be serviced once or twice a year, you know that they are looking out for you to ensure your system doesn’t fail. Preventative maintenance is the best way to ensure your system is not only running when you need it, but it also makes sure it runs efficiently all year round too.

Commercial HVAC Options

Generally, a company which also deals with commercial grade systems will have a very good understanding of home systems. To be confident with larger systems, they will already be confident with smaller systems and will be able to offer great advice and repair without fuss.

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How Often Should You Clean Your Air Ducts?

When it comes to the important things that need to be cleaned regularly in your home, often the most overlooked items are the ones that you can’t see. Things like the filters in your taps, filters in your air conditioning units and the ducting that the air from HVAC systems flows through into your home require regular cleaning, however, because you don’t see them that often, they can be easy to ignore. One of the most important of these items for regular cleaning is the ducting. You may not think it is a necessary item to be cleaned, but if left too long, it can cause the air in your home to end in poor quality.

Why Do They Need To Be Cleaned?

The ducting is where the air flows from outside your home, through the compressor and into the rooms in your home through vents or head units, and because they are in constant use when your HVAC unit is in use, they can get build-up inside of dirt, dust, and mold, as well as rodent or insect droppings. The longer you let it go between cleans, the more chance you have of creating clogging in your system. Mold is a common occurrence in ducting, as moisture is a common element of the air transfer. Air quality is one of the main reasons we install HVAC systems in our homes, and if you don’t maintain the system regularly the air quality in your home drops.

How Often Do They Need To Be Cleaned?

Your air conditioner filters usually require cleaning every six months and is usually done at the end of peak usage seasons like summer and winter. Because your air conditioning units are usually used less in autumn and spring, this is the best time to clean them. One of the reasons this is best to clean them is that they have recently had almost constant use, for months on end. In winter we use our systems to heat our homes, and with winter comes snow, moisture and even dry dust that can be left in the ducting to create mold and other types of unhealthy buildup. In summer we cool the air to our homes, which brings with it regular moisture through the ducting. Combining moisture and heat with humidity and dark spaces is the perfect place for mold to grow. Cleaning your ducting after these peak seasons will ensure buildup is left at a minimum year-round.

How Do I Clean Them?

The best way to have your ducting cleaned is to get a professional to clean them for you. Ducting runs through your roof or walls and can be very difficult to access without the right knowledge and tools for the job. When you have your filters cleaned next, why not get your air conditioning service person to include a ducting clean at the same time. Once a year is fine as a bare minimum if you don’t use your ducted system too often, however, if you live in a dusty area, or an area where there is a lot of construction, you may need to have them cleaned more regularly.

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What Is Central Air Conditioning

If you are trying to smoothly transition into summer each year without relying on air conditioning throughout your home, it can be quite uncomfortable at times. There are many types of air conditioning units you can install into a home, from window units to full-sized multi-zone automated systems. Central air conditioners are also known as ducted air conditioning and are one of the most popular HVAC systems you can install into your house.

What Is A Central Air Conditioning System?

Central air conditioning systems use a system of ducts that run through your roof and walls to direct airflow evenly throughout your home. The ducts are large ‘hoses’ that feed through your home and release air through vents in each room. They can distribute both hot and cold air and depend on the type of compressor or boiler you use, can be used all year round to maintain constant temperatures throughout your home. They can be programmed to let more air access larger rooms or can be set to run different air temperatures to different rooms based on your requirements.

How Does It Work?

Generally, the air will be sent through one vent and when the air either cools or warms again, it is transferred through other vents which then recycle it back through the system to make it warm or cool again. Vents are commonly placed in walls, in the floor of homes and the ceiling. Depending on the type of system and installation you are having installed will depend on the locations of your vents, how many there are and how the air flows back to the central system.

The compressor part of the system turns room or ‘air temperature’ air into a cooler or warmer temperature based on the thermostat setting you create on the module that controls the system.

Why Are They A Good Option?

Air conditioners not only change the temperature of the air in your home, but they also filter the air for impurities making a healthier home. The air quality in your home is one important element that can alter the health of your family. If the air quality is poor, and your family members have asthma or allergies they can be more prone to attacks. Clean air from air conditioning units offers relief for allergy and asthma sufferers all year round.

Air conditioners dehumidify incoming air as well, creating less chance that mold and mildew will form. Central air conditioning units also use less energy than many other types of systems, and when set to the right settings with the right types of sensors, can shut off when you leave a room, and turn back on when you return.

Central air conditioners are quiet, they are virtually invisible from inside your home except for small vents that can be matched to your décor, they are far more efficient, and they are both convenient and easy to operate. Choosing the right system for your home will require professional help. A central air conditioner expert will be able to advise you of the options available for automation, room sensors, and the perfect setup to suit your home.

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How Long Do HVAC Systems Last?

A heating or cooling system for your home is a serious investment, and when you have a large cash layout for a home upgrade like this, you want to know that it is going to last, and you are going to get your money’s worth.

Typically, a standard HVAC system should last anywhere between 15 and 25 years, some even longer. However, there are a few factors that will change the length of time it will last. The type and brand of your system, and how you maintain it are two very important factors that need to be considered.

Brands That You Can Trust

When you are installing a system in your home, you need to be able to trust that the brand you are installing is of high quality. The best way to know this is either through research or taking advice from a professional installer or asking friends or family who have installed similar systems. The important thing about brands is just because you know the brand, doesn’t mean it’s a good one. This is not to say that all brands are bad, or all brands are good, it just means that you still need to research, to make sure the system will suit your needs, and work efficiently and effectively in your home.

Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance is the most important thing about installing an HVAC system. Like anything with moving parts, it will require regular maintenance, and if you don’t maintain it, you are setting yourself up for a costly future error. You may think that an air conditioning system doesn’t have enough moving parts to maintain regularly, but when you consider what the role of the unit is in your home you may need to think again.

The role of an HVAC system is to alter the air quality in your home. Whether it is to make it warmer or cooler than the current temperature doesn’t matter too much when comparing it to how clean air needs to be circulated through your home to be completely effective. If you have unclean air flowing through your home it can cause health problems, and especially if you have asthmatic family members or anyone in the home who suffers from allergies, regular maintenance is vital for them to maintain good health.

Regular maintenance not only removes and toxins that can cause health issues, it also ensures that any issues within the system itself are tended to before they become too expensive to fix.

How Often Should I Maintain My System to Prolong Its Life?

Standard systems will need maintenance at least once a year even if you don’t use it that often. If you use your system constantly to cool, in summer or heat in winter, you should have the system maintenance performed at the end of each heavy usage season. Mold, mildew, dust and rodent/pest droppings need to be cleaned for the system filters and ducting to ensure a long life is achieved.

Each different type of system requires different types of maintenance so speak to a professional today that can guide you through the process.

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How Do I Know My HVAC Compressor Is Bad?

One of the most common causes for an Air Conditioning unit breaking down is a failing Air Conditioner compressor, which is a part that typically gives a fair warning it is on the brink of failure before it completely breaks down.
Often, however, homeowners don’t usually call in a broken air conditioner until it has completely stopped working. This can cause a lot higher costs to repair it as well, because it may cause other domino effect issues. It’s very important to know when your compressor is beginning to show signs that failure is imminent, meaning you can get it fixed before it’s too late.

Not only can knowing the signs of a wearing compressor save you money but if your compressor happens to stop working in the hottest peak of summer, you will have to suffer through the heat as well.

What Are the Warning Signs?

There are many obvious warning signs that your HVAC compressor might be having issues, however, some are more obvious than others. Your compressor is the heart of your air conditioning system and when it starts having issues the results will be staring you in the face.

HVAC systems are very complex, but here are some of the simple signs that you need to get a professional to come and look at it.

Loud Noises

Noises like ticking, clunking, rumbling, rattling, clicking or squealing are not normal sounds to come from a compressor. In fact, compressors should be quiet 99% of the time. If you turn on your air conditioning unit and you hear any strange noises you have never heard before coming from it, chances are there might be an issue with your compressor. There are many components to a compressor, and different noises mean different things. A clicking noise could mean that the mounts that hold the compressor in place could have failed, making the motor bounce around in the space it should be contained in.

Struggling to Turn On

If your HVAC unit struggles to turn itself on or takes a while, it could also mean the compressor is having issues. There are many reasons this could happen and could be to do with the electrical components like the relay switch that starts the compressor when you turn the unit on.

Moisture Leaks

If you find moisture or water puddles around your Air Conditioning unit, it could mean that you have a refrigerant leak in your compressor. The refrigerant is a gas that cools the air, just like in your fridge, and if the gases leak, it can be harmful to your health and your family’s health. If your compressor is leaking refrigerant, it won’t be very long until it stops working altogether. In this instance, turn it off and call a professional out before you switch it back on again.

Other Ways to Tell

Some other ways to tell if your compressor needs repairs are limited or restricted air flow compared to normal, as well as the unit not cooling the air as it normally would, or warmer air. It’s important that if you notice any issues with your HVAC unit, that you contact a professional who can look at the issues and run regular maintenance on your system, so these types of issues don’t continue to happen.

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Tips For Not Overworking Your Aircon This Summer

Not that long ago a majority of the population weren’t lucky enough to have their homes fitted with air conditioning systems. However now, in this modern era of affordable technology, we are no longer starved of the creature comforts only the wealthy used to be able to afford. For anyone who has recently acquired their first air conditioning system, there are a few very important things you need to know before we head into summer. These tips will help to prolong the life of your air conditioner as well as save you a few dollars on your electricity bills.

Reasons not to run your system full-time

However hot it might get this summer, you really shouldn’t be running your systems full-time, and there are many reasons for that. One of the reasons is that it will cost a fortune. Over the course of the summer, you can be paying hundreds of dollars more for electricity than before, especially if your HVAC is running 24/7.
Another great reason to not run it is constantly is that it will wear out your sparkly new system pretty quickly.
Like anything else with moving parts and motors, they need rest time. If you run your car for three straight months, do you think it would last you forever? The answer is no, so the same rule should apply to your air conditioner.

Ventilation

When you run an air conditioning system constantly, it can also cause other problems around your home. Usually when you run an HVAC system, your doors and windows will be closed to keep the cool air in, however, what you really should be doing is ventilating your home at least once a day of the weather allows it.

Ventilation throughout your home ensures your HVAC system isn’t just recycling dirty air constantly. If it does continue to do this, it can cause health issues. It’s best to ventilate your home in the early hours of the morning before it gets too hot.

Leave it on when you are out

One of the best tips for air conditioning systems is to leave it running when you are out, just not at full capacity. If you are out and expecting a very hot day, set it so it will be moderately cool when you arrive home. Air conditioners will have to work much harder to get the air temperature down in a hot building as compared to a cooler house that has had a controlled temperature operating all day.

Block Sunlight

On your windows that receive full hot sunlight during the day, make sure you have blinds or curtains to block out the sun when your HVAC system is turned on. Sunlight will put the temperature balance out of sync and can force the system to run overtime.

Utilize your fans

Run you’re HVAC at the same time as ceiling fans. This will ensure better circulation is achieved. If you don’t have a completely partitioned full-home air conditioning system, this will circulate cooler air to the rooms where your air con won’t reach.

Change the filter regularly and schedule a yearly maintenance.

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Is A Split System Worth The Investment?

Split system air conditioning is one of the most popular and cost-effective ways to heat and cool your home. These systems are easy to install and can be zoned across your home with one external unit.

Split system air conditioning technology has changed over the last 10 years, and modern systems are far more energy efficient than they used to be. Most systems these days will be far less costly than ducted systems to use and will save you a great deal on your annual energy bills.

Here are some of the pros and cons of split system air conditioning so you can make a more informed decision on your purchase.

Pros of a Split System

Versatility

You can easily install split system air conditioning systems into any room of your home. These types of system only require a small three-inch diameter hole in your wall to run a conduit with cables and piping to the external unit, and the external unit itself can be located within 50 feet of your internal units.

They Are Attractive

Modern split system air conditioners look great. They can match almost any décor, and most homeowners believe they blend in seamlessly well with the surroundings. Most units are not that obtrusive and will fit into most rooms with ease, without looking hideous.

They Are Quiet

Split system air conditioning systems are quiet. Because most of the noise happens outside, the noise inside is fairly limited, which means you won’t be kept awake in the heat of the night by an engine running.

Energy Efficient

Split system air conditioning can use up to 30% less energy than some ducted systems. The piping in split system air conditioning doesn’t need to be insulated, so it costs less to install and runs more efficiently.

Cons of a Split System

Price

Split system air conditioning systems are not the cheapest to install, and when compared to a window installed system, they are more intricate and more expensive to purchase.

More Difficult To Install

Installation of split system air conditioning systems must be done by a professional. Because there is electrical and plumbing work required, the job is not something you should attempt by yourself.

Location

Split systems are not that well-suited to multi-storey apartments unless there are specific locations where you can install the external unit. If you are tight for space outside your apartment, an installation of a split system might not be appropriate.

Noise

The external unit does make noise, so if you don’t have an appropriate location for it away from windows it could cause some issues.

If you need any assistance when it comes to choosing a split system for your home or business, make sure you get in touch with our experienced team today. We can give you the right advice, help choose a system to suit your requirements, and provide full installation. We also provide ongoing maintenance and repairs services for years to come so you can make the most of your HVAC.

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Good Ventilation For Good Indoor Air Quality

Quality air to breathe within your home or workplace is sometimes hard to achieve, and typically the most active method to improve indoor air quality is to remove sources of pollution or to reduce the number of emissions. Often, source control is more cost-efficient than increasing ventilation as adding extra ventilation can increase the energy costs to maintain indoor air quality. However, there are many ways you can improve the ventilation of a building without raising the costs too high while running it.

Ventilation Improvements

Most air quality problems around the home are derived from poorly filtered air, or items within your home that create poor air, like ovens or stovetops, smoke, mold, and asbestos to name a few. The best way to eliminate the poor air quality is of course to eliminate the source. This isn’t always as simple a task as you would think, and some sources of bad odors can be quite dangerous.

Of course, the best solution to improve air quality is source control, however, what happens if the source can’t be eliminated that easily?

One other way to improve the air quality in your home is not to eliminate the source but lower the concentration of the pollutants. The best way to do this is by creating a better airflow from outdoors to indoors, otherwise known as ventilation. Ventilation has two very specific purposes, one is to dilute the pollutants from within the building and secondly to remove the pollutants from it.

Ventilation Elements

There are three main elements of ventilation that are important and they are the ventilation rate (which is the amount of outdoor air provided in the space), airflow direction and air distribution.

Many heating and cooling systems do not actually bring fresh air into your home, so utilizing windows and doors for airflow is vital for clean air to enter a space. When the weather permits, you should manually ventilate the home as much as possible. Not only does this clean the distribute clean outside air through the home but it also stops things like mold from getting out of control. Well-ventilated spaces are far less likely to retain bad smell or remain damp enough to assist the growth of mold.

Other Ways To Remove Contaminants

Other simple methods you can use to remove contaminants from your home are ventilation fans commonly used in bathrooms to remove stream. Ventilation fans remove contaminants from a specific room into the outdoors and draw cleaner air from other parts of the home. So, even if you have one door open at the other end of your home, running ventilation fans will draw air through the home enough to prevent things like mold from developing.

Ventilation helps to remove indoor airborne pollutants which reduces contaminant levels and improves your indoor air quality.

Introducing outdoor air into your home is the best way to create a healthy indoor air quality level. To ensure your heating and cooling systems are distributing clean air through, make sure your filters are cleaned regularly, and the home is well-ventilated.

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Advantages Of Ductless Air Conditioning

Ductless air-conditioners have many applications in commercial and residential buildings. The most common uses are as retrofit additions to houses with other non-ducted systems like hydronic or space heaters.

They are also a great option for small apartments or rooms that don’t normally get a decent quantity of air conditioning from other systems. They are a great solution for rooms where ducting is not practical.

Mini split systems have two key components: an indoor air distribution unit and an outdoor condenser. A channel links the indoor and outdoor elements and covers the refrigerant tubing, the power cable, and a condensate drain for safety.

The Advantages

The main advantage that mini-split air conditioning systems have over other types is that they are a cost-effective and easy to install option for cooling and heating specific rooms. Many split systems can include up to four distribution units inside, offering multiple zone heating and cooling off the one external unit.

The quantity is based on how large or small the rooms are that require cooling or heating. In small apartments, mini split-systems are perfect for distributing even amounts of warm or cold air into each room. In a home where there is a lot of insulation, one of these systems can be just as effective as in a small apartment.

Each zoned area will be able to connect to its own individual thermostat, meaning each zone can be run at different temperatures at your own control. This means you can turn the system on and off when it is not occupied, which will save money and energy.

Easier Installation

Ductless mini split systems are much easier to install than other air-conditioning systems. Installation of a ductless system only requires a simple three-inch diameter hole to run the piping through, and the inside unit can be located up to 50 feet from the outdoor unit and still run effectively.

This means you can run a system in most rooms of your home while the outside unit is hidden in a less obvious location, creating a better aesthetic appeal.

Less Energy Loss Than Ducted Systems

Because these types of systems have no ducts, you don’t get a great deal of energy loss running between the outside and the room the air distributor is located. Duct systems can use up to 30% more energy for air conditioning, particularly if the ducting runs through an attic or another uninsulated area.

Mini split systems can be installed in a range of ways if you are building a new home, and can easily be hung from walls, ceilings and even flush mounted into a wall space. Most modern systems run off a remote control system and can be easily turned on and off as required.

There are many options available for installation of these types of systems, and there are many leading brands that offer a solution that will suit your home specifically. Choose a design that suits your property based on the size of space you need cooled and heated.