Air Conditioning and Heating Blog

What Should be Considered When Buying A Gas Furnace?

When buying a gas furnace, there are a few things to consider, like single stage heating or two stage heating, variable speed or single speed blower motor, the AFUE rating.

Let’s start with the AFUE rating (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency); this is the measurement that indicates how efficient a gas furnace is. The higher the rating the more efficient the unit is, the less gas will be used. Currently, the minimum allowed by law is 80%, meaning 80% of the fuel is used for heating your home, with 20% or 20 cents of every heating dollar going up the flue as waste. A 90% gas furnace means 90% of the fuel is used for heating your home, with 10% or 10 cents of every heating dollar going up the flue as waste. Of, course, the more energy efficient models will cost more initially, but will save more in utility costs over time.

Single stage heating or two stage heating?   Single stage heating puts out the same amount of heat each and every time the system calls for heat. Two stage heating has two stages of heat, a low heat and a high heat. About 90% of the time in the Dallas, TX area, the heating system comes on in low heat and warms your home perfectly well, if we have extreme temperatures or there is a big difference in the homes temperature and the thermostat setting, the high heat comes on to speed up the process of heating your home quickly. Once the high stage heating has accomplished its job, the next time the system calls for heat, the system will use the low stage heating. Any time you can heat your home on lower stage heating is going to save you money.  So, two stage heating will save you on your gas bill vs. single stage heating.

Single speed blower motor or variable speed?  You can purchase a gas furnace with a single speed blower motor or a variable speed blower motor.  A single speed blower motor comes on the same speed, putting out the same amount of air flow each and every time. A variable speed motor is just that, it varies its air flow speed according to the heating or cooling demand of the system, giving a more constant temperature throughout the home, making you more comfortable.  A motor operating at slower speeds consumes less electricity. So, variable speed is more efficient than single speed.

In our area due to the extremely hot weather, our air conditioners work overtime making our cooling cost to be much much higher than our gas costs, so… most homeowners in the Dallas area purchase an 80% gas furnace with a higher efficient air conditioning system.

All units today, from minimum efficiency to ultra efficiency will save you on your utility cost. Every home owner has a budget; our advice is to get the highest efficiency your budget will allow.

For more information or to schedule an appointment for a free quote and consultation, call us at 972-530-8384.

Freezing rain or ice on heat pump condensing unitWinter Weather Advisory. Any time ice or freezing rain is headed to your neighborhood and you have a heat pump, it is advised to turn the system from heat pump mode to auxiliary heat or emergency heat at the thermostat. Ice build up on the outdoor heat pump condensing unit can create expensive damage. Once the ice event is over, you can turn the system back to heat pump mode at the thermostat.

When is the time to replace my heating and air conditioning system? Here’s when and what to replace.

Is your existing heating and air conditioning system old and inefficient? Are your utility bill costing you too much? Are you having to make expensive repairs to your system? If, you answered yes to any of these questions, then it’s time to replace your existing system.

The average life of an air conditioning and heating system varies depending on the climate, care and quality of the equipment. The average life of an air conditioner is approximately 15 years, a heat pump is approximately 10-12 years, since it operates year round, a gas furnace or air handler may be longer.

When your system is needing expensive repairs of major components, then you’ll need to decide whether to repair or replace the existing system with a new system. In the short term, repairing your system usually will cost less. But, by choosing to repair, you miss an opportunity to save significant amounts of money in future repair and utility bills. Today’s systems can save you up to 64% on your utility bills. Consequently, it may make more sense to put the cost of the repair towards a new system that’ll immediately bring down operating costs. Eventually, depending on the efficiency, the new more efficient unit may even pay for itself through decreased utility bills. Plus, you’ll have the advantage of improved comfort, indoor air quality and reliability.

The higher the S.E.E.R. (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) or AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating, the more efficient the models. For air conditioning, the rating is S.E.E.R. This rating is based on general design criteria such as the compressor and outdoor coil. S.E.E.R. ratings are for comparison purposes only, so that homeowners will know how they can compare different brands of products will similar efficiency ratings. The rating for the outdoor unit will reference a general efficiency range. The actual efficiency rating for a specific system will depend on the combination of the outdoor unit and the indoor evaporator coil. A variable speed indoor furnace or air handler will increase the efficiency rating of the system, as well.

Gas furnaces are rated AFUE. This defines the amount of heat used to warm your home from the burned fuel. An 80% furnace will use 80% of the available fuel to heat your home, 20% of the heat is vented outdoors. Many older gas furnaces are only 60% efficient, sending 40% of the heat outdoors. As you can see a new high efficiency furnace will require much less fuel to heat your home.

Heat pumps are rated by S.E.E.R. for cooling efficiency and by HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor) for heating efficiency. As with other ratings, the higher the HSPF, the less energy it will take to warm your home.

When choosing a heating and air conditioning contractor, look for a contractor associated with a major manufacturer, such as Trane. When obtaining prices, to make a fair comparison, be sure the prices you are comparing, include the same services and based on the same brand, size and efficiency of equipment and the same quality of workmanship. Get it in writing, be sure model numbers are provided. Be wary of a contractor who offers unrealistically low prices, it may mean corners, quality, workmanship are being cut in crucial areas.

“It’s unwise to pay to much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay to much, you lose a little, that is all. When you pay to little, you sometimes loose everything, because the thing you bought is incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot, it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you can do that you will have enough for something better”. John Ruskin (1819-1900)

Arctic Comfort provides the highest quality equipment, materials, parts, supplies and installation. We offer 1 or 2 year labor warranty and most manufactures offer 10 year parts warranty on equipment or system replacements. Extended Warranties – 10 Year Parts and Labor available.

Call us today at 972-530-8384, for a FREE Estimate on replacement equipment or systems.

Hurricane Season Is Here! Here are some safety tips for keep your Pets safe during a natural disaster. 

If it’s not safe for you to stay in your home, it’s not safe for your pets to stay either.Boy and his Dog before disaster hits Don’t leave them in the house, chained or contained in the yard. If they can’t go with you, let them loose. They’ll stand a better chance of survival loose than confined within a threatened area.

Make sure each pet is wearing an I.D. tag with your contact information, your next of kin just in case something happens to you, your Vets number or that they are micro chipped. Also, keep an up to date photo of your pet and a copy of immunization records, as well as a list of hotels and shelters that accept pets. You’ll also need supplies for your pet: water bowl, food dish, can opener for canned food, one week supply of bottled water, dry food or canned food, treats. You also need a carrier for transporting your pet, be sure to include your pets name and your contact information on the carrier, don’t forget the leash, collar and bedding for the carrier. If, your pet is a dog, don’t forget the pooper scooper and disposal bags, if you pet is a cat, don’t forget disposable litter pans, kitty litter, litter scoop and disposal bags. For more information, contact your local Red Cross Office.

My air conditioner never cools my house below 80 degrees, is this normal ?

Set at 76 degrees is 80 DegreesNo, it’s not. It could be many things, maintenance issues, like clogged air filter, clogged evaporator or condenser coil – we recommend you get your air conditioning system checked and cleaned every year at the beginning of the cooling season. It also could be the heat is coming on with the air conditioner, a problem with the duct systems, the system may not be the right capacity / size for the area it’s cooling or a faulty component.
Not only is the air conditioning system not cooling well, you are paying a lot on your electric bill to get undesirable comfort. And that’s no good. So, you need to call us at 972-530-8384, any time, any day to see whats going on.

What you need to know about the drain systems for your air conditioning system.

HVAC Main and Auxiliary Drain Diagram AC main drains into bath sink Your air conditioner cools by removing the humidity (water) from the air in your home. All this water has to go somewhere, thus the drain lines. The evaporator coil is the part of the system that removes the water from the air, it has an internal drain pan that catches the water, the water then drains from the pan through the main drain of the evaporator coil and out the main drain line, which usually drains into a bathroom sink or bath tub. If, the main drain line becomes clogged or if the evaporators coils pan gets a hole or crack in it, instead of the water draining onto your ceiling and causing damage, it should overflow into the auxiliary drain pan and out the auxiliary drainWater dripping out aux drain line stub out soffit line that is ran to a conspicuous location with a pvc stub out in the soffit of your home. So when you see water dripping out this pvc stub out, you know you have a problem up in the attic and you need to call us for service at 972-530-8384. There also could be a safety float switch on the auxiliary drain pan as a back up to the auxiliary drain line for the occasions that it gets stopped up and causes water to back up into the auxiliary drain pan which will trigger the safety float switch to shut the system down instead of the water in the auxiliary pan overflowing onto the ceiling causing water damage. Tip: A couple times during the cooling season, pour about a cup of bleach or vinegar down the main drain line to help reduce algae growth and reduce the risk of a clogged drain line. Use a funnel to avoid spill over.

May is the perfect time to replace old air conditioners since temperatures are still below 90 degrees.

When the super heat of summer arrives, people want their air conditioners to keep them cool and comfortable at the lowest energy cost possible. It is impossible to achieve this with an antique air conditioner that is 10 – 15 years old. Arctic Comfort recommends updating to a system that will keep your home comfortable and reduce your energy costs in the extreme heat of summer.

The older a unit gets, the less it is able to keep temperatures and pocketbooks comfortable. As the system ages, it loses capacity and efficiency and repairs will become necessary more often. Consequently, the longer its replacement is put off, the more the unit is costing in comfort, high electric bills and expensive repairs.

Replacing an air conditioner is an expense that most people want to avoid, but once they do, they will notice the results of having a comfortable home and reduced electric bills and wonder why they hesitated.

Today, an ultra-efficient air conditioning system can save up to 64 percent on cooling costs. Even a standard efficiency can save up to 40% percent. Over the life of an air conditioning system, those savings add up. That is an excellent return on your investment.

We have a system for every home, every budget. Depending on the system, most manufactures are offering rebates up to $1,700 through May, some longer. Some utility companies are offering utility credits up to $800.

May is the perfect time to replace an air conditioning system. Take advantage of the available manufacturers’ rebates and utility credits. Beat the super heat of summer. May is the last month with below 90 degree average high temperatures. We can easily install a new system in your home before Memorial Day Weekend.

Plan ahead, don’t suffer through another intolerable super-heated summer. Be comfortable instead. Call us at 972-530-8384 for a free quote on an air conditioning system replacement.

Click the Special Offers below to see how you can money on a new system.

Has Your Air Filter Ever Looked Like This?

If, your filter has ever looked like this, you have waited way to long to change it. Once an air filter gets completely clogged, the dirt and dust will get sucked through and around the air filter, the blower motor, the blower motor housing, the evaporator coil and on into your duct systems, leaving dirt and dust on every component it passes through, blocking much needed air flow, causing your air conditioning or heating system to work harder and harder to keep you less comfortable, eventually working so hard that the system breaks down, leaving you totally uncomfortable, emptying your pocket book with a very expensive repair bill. All because of a dirty, inexpensive air filter.

Check and change your air filter routinely: 1″ pleated air filters, we recommend changing monthly or no longer than three months, 3-5″ Media Filters, we recommend changing every four to six months, though you may find for your area, home or business, you may need to change more often. Make it easy to keep a clean filter, keep a supply of air filters or media filters on hand and set a filter change reminder in your smart phone.

Air conditioning and heating systems are not maintenance free, check and change the air filter regularly and get your system tuned up and cleaned twice a year, once before the cooling season begins and again before the heating season begins.

Purchase our Advantage Program and we can take care of the air filter and maintenance for you, automatically, you don’t have to set a reminder or call us, we’ll call you. Call us at 972-530-8384 for more details about our Advantage Program.

Dirty Blower Motor for Air Conditioning and Heating System

Blower Motor

Clogged Air Conditioning Evaporator Coil with Dog Hair

Dog Hair

Clogged Air Conditioner Evaporator Coil

Clogged Evaporator Coil

Dirty Duct for Air Conditioning and Heating System

Dirty Duct

When is the Best Time to Replace Your Air Conditioner and Heating System?

The best time to replace your air conditioning and heating system is during the off season, which is spring or fall. As you can imagine, the highest demand for replacements and repairs are during the hottest months of summer and the coldest months of winter, so the best time is during the “off” season, spring and fall. The off season months are: spring; March, April, May, and fall; September, October, November. The weather is ideal;  you are least likely to be using your air conditioning or heater during the off season, so you’ll be comfortable during the installation of your new system.

With lower demand in the spring and fall, prices will be better;  it is during this off season, that dealers and manufacturers offer discounts and rebates, saving you quite a bit of money. Off season savings may allow you to purchase a higher efficient system than you would during peak demand pricing.

Be pro-active, replace your air conditioning and heating system before it breaks and you have to replace it at the most inopportune time in the extreme heat of summer or the freezing cold of winter. Take advantage of the best off season pricing and the best weather conditions. Call us today at 972-530-8384, to schedule a free quote to replace your air conditioning and heating system.

UV Light Systems to clean the air you breathe.

Colds, Flu and Allergies. Stop Germs Dead In Their Tracks. Here’s How You Can Help Keep Your Family and Employees Healthy.

A UV Light System installed in the air stream of your heating and air conditioning system, disinfects the breading ground for contaminants by destroying or neutralizing harmful microorganisms, bacteria, viruses, mold spores, mildew and other tiny organisms, resulting in fewer and less severe colds, flu and allergy flare ups, consequently keeping your family and employees healthier, reducing the number of lost days from school and work.

A UV Light System significantly improves the quality of indoor air. A UV Light System works 24 hours a day, year round, cleaning the air you breathe, helping your family and employees stay healthy, reducing their exposure to harmful contaminants in the air while at home and work, keep sick days at bay, don’t delay, call us today, at 972-530-8384, to have a UV Light System installed in your home or business.

Any time, any day, you have questions, need service, repair, maintenance, inspection, replacement or other heating and cooling services, call us at 972-530-8384.

Air Conditioner and Heating Repairs, Service and Equipment Replacement in your neighborhood:  Addison, Allen, Carrollton, The Colony, Coppell, Dallas, Fairview, Forney, Frisco, Garland, Lewisville, Mckinney, Mesquite, Murphy, Parker, Plano, Richardson, Rockwall, Rowlett, Sachse, Murphy, Wylie TX

When you need your heater repaired, or your air conditioner serviced or need to replace your heating and air conditioning system, CALL US, ANY TIME, ANY DAY  972-530-8384.

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Licensed TACL #A002364C  ~ Master Air Conditioning and Heating Contractor ~ N.A.T.E. Certified ~ Insured

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