Should I Replace My Furnace and A/C Together?

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Your home’s comfort is dependent in large part on the heating and air conditioning systems you select to heat your home on cold winter nights and keep it cool during the sizzling days of summer. When one of these essential systems begins to fail and needs to be replaced, you may be tempted to install only the system that is causing trouble. Should you wait to purchase the other system until it fails also, or should you consider simultaneous furnace and A/C replacement? You can significantly improve the overall value of your home when you maintain high-quality, compatible systems for both heating and cooling.

Here are some advantages to consider when you are looking at replacing A/C and heater together:

  • Energy efficiency. Today’s heating and air conditioning systems are much more energy efficient than those built a decade or more in the past. To easily compare the efficiency of different air conditioning systems, simply check the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating.
  • Cost savings. The higher the SEER, the less energy used by the system, and the lower the operating cost. By having a newer, high efficiency system you not only gain greater energy efficiency, but take a load off your wallet, as well.
  • Peak performance. When pairing older and newer technology, problems can arise, including reduced performance of both systems. In addition, manufacturers are not necessarily obligated to honor warranties of a new system if it is combined with an older system, even if the new system breaks down during the warranty period.
  • Complementary systems. A furnace system and central air conditioning system share the same air handler, or blower. With a matched system, the units are designed to be installed together and work together, which allows both systems to operate properly and at peak efficiency. Having a matched system with an efficient air handler will allow both systems to operate properly, giving you the comfort you deserve.

Why should you replace furnace and A/C at the same time? Replacing both systems at the same time might seem like you are spending money you don’t have to, but it can actually save you energy and money over the long term, even if one system is still working. By replacing both the furnace and air conditioning units at the same time you get maximum energy efficiency, energy cost savings, reliable year-round comfort, and modern convenience.

Why Is My A/C Blowing Warm Air?

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Having your AC blowing warm air or underperforming or is one of the most uncomfortable experiences. We count on our A/C units to provide us that timed and on-demand relief of cool air, and when it does not work properly you want the problem fixed as soon as possible. There are a number of reasons your A/C is not cooling properly. Here are some of the most common reasons.

Though it may sound silly, double-check to make sure thermostat is correctly set. It may have been turned off or inadvertently switched to the heat setting.

Restriction in air flow due to a dirty air filter may also be a reason you’re A/C is not cooling as expected. If the unit hasn’t had maintenance done in a while, an airflow restriction could be the result of dirty coils.

A bad compressor will also cause your A/C to blow warm air. This could be due to an electrical failure, refrigerant coming back to the compressor, or overheating. It is best to call a professional to confirm if your compressor is the problem, as it is one of the most commonly misdiagnosed problems with air conditioning units.

A/C Repair

A wiring issue may be a cause of an A/C not cooling or break down completely. Frayed, cut, or otherwise damaged wires can cause this. Damaged wires are often caused by family pets. To avoid pets chewing on wires, ensure wires are not sticking out or exposed.

A common culprit for an A/C not cooling properly is if the air conditioner is low on refrigerant (often Freon). Your A/C unit needs a proper refrigerant charge to cool your home. A Freon leak or depleted refrigerant can cause your unit to blow warm air. One way to tell if your air conditioner does not have enough Freon is if ice forms on the inside and outside units.

Air conditioner maintenance is best done in the spring, to make sure it is ready to go for summer and you do not suffer a breakdown during the hottest months. For A/C maintenance or repair anytime, call Apple Aire at (303) 733-2813.

What Does Air Duct Cleaning Service Involve?

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The quality of the air we breathe has a direct effect on our quality of life, so we at Apple Aire want to be sure you’re getting the best possible quality from the air in your home. One way to be sure you are breathing clean air in your home, especially if you have central air and heat, is to have your home air duct system cleaned periodically. How often should you have your air ducts cleaned? The National Air Duct Cleaners Association recommends getting your air ducts cleaned every three to five years, but we recommend doing it every two to five years, depending on your circumstances. In addition to regular cleaning, other times to consider an air duct cleaning service include when you move into a new home, or after a home remodeling project. If a family member is suffering from an unexplained allergy-related illness and you have taken every other possible step to decontaminate your home, you may want to consider having your ducts cleaned to see if the HVAC system was the culprit.

Air Duct Cleaning Service

The Environmental Protection Agency recommends air duct cleaning service when you suspect mold exists in the air ducts, you notice a vermin infestation somewhere in the home, or you see insects or rodents entering or exiting ductwork, and/or you see a visible “poof” of dust released from the supply registers when air is exiting the vents. In most areas of Colorado, mold is not a common problem due to our state’s low humidity, but it is a good idea to have your system checked for mold and mildew, especially if your home contains a basement, whether finished or unfinished, as basements typically tend to have a higher level of humidity. If your basement is finished and used as part of your living area, you will want to ensure no one occupying these rooms is inhaling mold or mildew. With air duct cleaning service keep in mind that wet or moldy insulation inside air ducts cannot be effectively cleaned, and should be removed and replaced, as failure to remove the cause of the mold growth in the first place will simply ensure that mold growth will recur.

People prone to allergies are especially sensitive to microscopic elements you can’t see with the naked eye commonly found in air ducts, such as dust, pollen, pet dander, and other airborne contaminants. Asthma sufferers do not do well breathing air that is loaded with dust mites, as this can severely aggravate asthma symptoms and possibly cause an asthma attack. A thorough air duct cleaning service can help alleviate most asthma and allergy symptoms by removing any buildup of these contaminants. A good cleaning that addresses the entire system and cleans every surface that air moves across (not just the air ducts) can improve the air quality in your home and literally help you breathe easier.

Duct Cleaning

When it comes to choosing who to trust with your home’s air duct cleaning, Angie’s List offers this advice; keep these points in mind when hiring an air duct cleaning company:

  • A good air duct cleaning service costs between $400 and $1,000 and addresses every aspect of the system that air passes over, including the furnace, air coils and central system. Good cleaners will use negative air machines with HEPA filters.
  • It should take a few hours. An air duct cleaner who is in and out in less than an hour probably did not do a good job.
  • Many quality ductwork cleaners use truck-mounted, outside vacuum systems that contain dust and debris outside the house.
  • Ask whether they follow the standards set by the National Air Duct Cleaners Association.

Before hiring anyone to clean the air duct system in your home, be sure to check them out thoroughly. Ask for written references with contact information from happy customers if possible, and get a written estimate before agreeing to have any work done.

Contact Apple Aire for your next air duct cleaning service at (303) 733-2813.

Is A Home Energy Audit Worth It?

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A home energy audit, also called a home energy assessment, is a physical inspection and analysis of the home used to determine how much energy it consumes and evaluate what measures can be taken to make the home more energy efficient, comfortable, and safe. Home energy audits cost between $300 and $500, and are a first step toward determining where to focus energy enhancing upgrades to ensure the biggest impact on energy efficiency and savings.

The Department of Energy estimates that homeowners can save anywhere between 5% and 30% on their energy bill by making efficiency upgrades identified in a home energy audit. Over time, that can make up a significant savings. Additionally, efficiency upgrades can make a home more comfortable, providing a more consistent and effective energy expenditure by eliminating energy waste and loss.

Home Energy Audit

Energy auditors follow a number of steps when conducting their assessment. Typically, the home energy audit begins with an analysis of the past year’s fuel bills to determine base energy consumption. The auditor will also interview the homeowner to learn about problems, how the home operates, occupancy, and other factors that relate to energy consumption. Physical inspections of the home’s exterior and interior are conducted along with a health and safety inspection, an electrical system inspection, and a combustion appliance inspection (for example, hot water heaters, furnaces, and heater systems). The auditor may also conduct tests such as a blower door test and temperature test using an infrared camera to identify energy inefficiencies like hot spots or cold spots.

After a thorough inspection and assessment, the auditor will document their findings and identify improvements that can be made to make the home more energy efficient. Information on how and where energy is leaking from the home, whether through cracks, around windows, doors, outlets, and lighting fixtures, or through insufficient or lacking insulation, is outlined and defined for the homeowner. Further, the home energy audit assessment identifies which upgrades will have the most impact, taking the guesswork out of what should be done first to make the home more energy efficient.

Weatherization Service Wheat Ridge

Home energy audits are a valuable asset to the homeowner who may be spending too much on their energy bills due to unaccounted for energy waste. The information and guidance from an audit will provide the direction to the homeowner on where best to make adjustments and improvements in order to gain greater energy efficiency and save money on their monthly energy costs.

For more information on home energy audits, call Apple Aire at (303) 733-2813.

Is Your Air Conditioner Ready For Summer?

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With summer right around the corner, now is the time to ensure your air conditioner is in proper working order. Apple Aire can help you prepare by providing central air conditioning service and AC maintenance that will check all the boxes, to make sure when those hot days arrive you won’t be left in the heat with a non-functioning air conditioner. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that heating and cooling your home takes up over 50% of your bill. Making sure your air conditioning system is prepared to operate efficiently and smoothly during those hot months is important so as not to waste precious resources while keeping yourself cool. There are a number of steps to preparing your AC unit and equipment for use during the hot summer months. Your air conditioning system is comprised of two main pieces of equipment, the indoor unit and the outdoor unit. Each unit needs to be thoroughly inspected, checked, and cleaned after sitting for some time, to make sure it is ready to go and keep you cool during the upcoming hot summer days and warm nights.

Central Air Conditioning Service

While there are some things you can do to prepare your system for use, like replacing the AC filter, removing any covers or blankets from the outdoor unit, and clearing away any debris around the unit, a professional HVAC technician is able to get into the heart of your AC system and perform checks, inspections, and conduct any necessary repairs caused by unseen issues. Some AC maintenance items that you can spot yourself and take care of with minimal hassle include replacing your AC filter in the indoor unit and cleaning your outdoor unit. After many months of not being used, changing the filter is imperative. Filters that are clogged with dirt and dust prevent proper air flow, reduce efficiency, and can end up recirculating dust, which can cause unhealthy air quality throughout your home. Your central air conditioner outdoor condenser and compressor unit is susceptible to leaves, yard debris, and dirt. Keep the area clean and the unit free of debris by removing any objects that may get in the way of the fan or obstruct the condenser coils. If you suspect your outdoor unit may need a more involved cleaning, Apple Aire will do a thorough check and servicing of the unit to include cleaning the coils, checking for leaks, looking for damaged pipe insulation, and removing debris that may have gotten inside the unit during the off season.

Air Conditioner Service in Wheat Ridge, CO

For more detailed servicing that gets into the guts of your indoor air handling unit and the outdoor condenser unit, a professional HVAC service technician is your best choice. A professional will inspect and conduct a check of coolant lines and the coil drainage hose, also known as the condensate line. To ensure system efficiency, the technician will tighten electrical connections, lubricate all HVAC moving parts, make sure blower components are properly adjusted, and check the air conditioner refrigerant level. Other items include making sure supply vents and return grills are clean and unobstructed. Once all the checks are made, a run test will be conducted to make sure the thermostat is functioning as intended and the system is moving cool air throughout the home. For a complete AC maintenance check and tune-up to get your air conditioning system properly prepared for use this summer, call Apple Aire at (303) 733-2813.

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