Prepare Your Furnace for Winter

Before you turn ON your Furnace you probably want to have a licensed contractor come out service and clean your furnace. They will make sure that the furnace is running at peak efficiency which will help reduce the heating cost through out the winter.

A lot of people debate about the ideal temperature during fall and winter. The ideal temperature is about 68 degrees. One thing you will always need to think about, for every degree you lower your thermostat you are going to save on your heating cost by 3 to 5 percent. If your family is hanging out in one area such as if watching TV then instead of wasting energy by heating the whole house, a wise thing to do is just lower the heating by 3 to 4 degrees and use a space heater where everyone is.

Changing your filters on a regular basis will help optimize the efficiency of your furnace and also keep the air cleaner in your home. It will most definitely filter out more allergy causing particles and save money. A good practice is to date your filters, so when in doubt you can always look at when you last changed it. A good time to change filters will probably be once every three months.

Another important reason to frequently change filters on your furnace is that a dirty filter will cause your burners to overheat and cause your heat exchangers to start cracking over time, which will cause the carbon mono-oxide to come into the house. And with lack of airflow, with the filter being so dirty your furnace will going to run longer and you will consume more natural gas cause it is not heating your house up as it was heating before. And also your electricity bill is going to go up because your blower motor, which pushes the air all around, is going to start drawing more amps because it will suck a little harder.

Its very important for you to have your furnace serviced every fall by a qualified service technician Which will not only maintain efficiency but also save you money throughout the year. A periodic service is a good opportunity to catch problems which are in the making before they turn into a major repair.

At we also have a maintenance plan which will get us out on your property at least twice a year. Once in the fall to service the furnace and the humidifier and once int he spring to service your air-conditioner. And also with that we can guarantee service within 24 hours. With the plan you get no holiday fees. No overtime fees. And then you are also going to save 15 to 40 percent off on your repairs, depending on what plan you have.

The good point of having your furnace serviced in the fall or having the maintenance plan where we come out in the fall to service your furnace is that we are not only going to clean your furnace but also thoroughly check for gas leaks to make sure you have no gas leaks in your house. We are going to pull it all apart, clean all the burners, flame sensors, pilot assembly to make sure that they are all good and clean and running as efficiently as they can.

We Service All Brands. We are also going to check for carbon-monoxide and that there is no gas in your heat exchanger. We will also check your water heater to meet the same standards.

Check Before Calling for Air Conditioner Service

The first thing you want to check is in the panel box you should have a couple of circuit breakers clearly marked for you AC and the furnace. Regardless of which position they are in, you should turn them OFF for a few minutes and turn them ON. If the circuit breakers trip again when you turn on the AC then leave them OFF and call for service. If the circuit breakers do not trip just give it few minutes and you know you fixed your problem.

Secondly, most systems have a digital thermostat, these have batteries. Just pop the cover off, check in the back, you got two double A batteries. replace the batteries, put it back on the wall.

You are going to have a time delay on most thermostats, so wait 3 ~ 5 minutes to see if your system comes back on. If does you know you have solved your problem.

Next easy thing is, the drain line could be backed up. You can flush it out with a vacuum, you can blow in it out with a water hose. Either way, if your system does have a float switch, its a little device which will turn the system off its a little device which will turn the system OFF if the drain line does get backed up in to it.

Air-Conditioner Not Cooling Enough

If your air-conditioner isn’t cooling properly it can be due to a number of different issues, including a dirty filter, dirty outside condenser unit or blocked supply or return air ducts.

The outside unit of your heating and air-conditioning system is called a condenser. Keeping the condenser clean is just as important as keeping a clean filter in the furnace. The condenser performs the important role of removing heat from the condensed gas and it cannot function properly if it is clogged with cotton wood, grass clippings or weeds.

The first thing to remember is to properly cut weed and grass from around the condenser so they do not build up.

Secondly, it is good practice to routinely rinse the unit to keep it clean and free of debris. Make sure you disconnect power to the unit before you start cleaning it. In order to rinse the unit it is important to not blast the unit too hard or use any hard object to brush the unit. As this may result in bending or damaging outside fins of the unit which will cause the unit to function poorly. Please do not brush the unit or sweep the unit but rather use only a garden hose sprayer.

How to Troubleshoot Outdoor Fan and Capacitor Problems?

Today we are looking at condensing unit you may find outside of your house on the ground.

It doesn’t matter whether it is a Trane, Goodman, Carrier unit, they are all pretty much the same. Have the same components for the most part. There are a couple of repairs that we are going to discuss here, they are real common. I would say about 60% of the calls I go on are one of these two items. While professionals would charge you hundreds of dollars, perhaps even thousands of dollars to replace these components, the good news is that it’s something that you as a home-owner, if you have a little bit of mechanical skills, it’s something you could do yourself. It might seem kind of intimidating but there is really not a whole lot to it.

One of the things I want to talk about is this capacitor here. We are going to look at it a little more closely and it just has to have some wires going to it. Maybe four wires and there is really not a whole lot to replacing one.

If neither the compressor nor the fan motor would turn on than the culprit is most like this capacitor. You just unscrew one bracket which holds it in place, and you just replace the wires on the new capacitor one by one. They are marked COMMON, HERMATIC and PAN. So you will just the wire that is connected to the common on your old capacitor and put it on the new one and then repeat the process for the rest of the wires. That’s pretty much all there is to it.

The other thing is your outdoor fan motor, and it doesnt matter, you might have a package unit so if you were to go on the roof and look at your package unit, somewhere most likely on top of the unit you will see a fan like this one. It has a bird-guard grill which is there to keep the birds from getting inside of the condenser cavity. It’s pretty much the same operation where you have a package unit on the rook or a condensing unit on the ground.

Before you do any work on the condensing unit, you should always disconnect power to the unit by pulling out the fuse block from the fuse box. And I like to set it on top of the condenser that way it is always in sight to reassure me that it’s turned off.

Is It Time To Buy a New HVAC System?

When somebody says you need a 3 ton unit, it not how much it weighs. Its the capacity and its measured in British thermal units. 12000 BTU (British Thermal Units) is equal to one ton of air conditioning. Ask your dealer to do the load calculations to be sure you are getting exactly the right requirement for your home.

Is it time for your home to get a new heating or cooling system, if so choosing the right one is a big decision and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Here are a few things to consider when looking at replacing your system. First, while a new system has the potential to save over 30% on your energy bill, many home owners see a small or no savings due to poor installation.

Its important to work with a contractor who knows how to optimize your systems efficiency. Second, when it comes to heating and cooling equipment, bigger is not better. Get the right size system for your house to maximize efficiency. Also, don’t just look at your equipment, have your duct work checked as well. According to the department of energy, typical duct systems loose 25% to 40% of the energy put out by the HVAC equipment. And finally once you have decided on the right system, make sure it’s installed correctly. Sloppy installation can lead to duct leakage and other problems. Handicapping your brand new system from the getgo. The best way to choose your right HVAC system to have an experienced specialist, like the ones at EZComfortAC, look at your current system and help you make the choice that’s right for you. Using proven methods our experts can help determine the correct size system for your home.

How important is attic insulation?

Usually we associate insulation with keeping homes warm, keeping the heat in. Well then, is insulation even required in a climate like Houston? Absolutely. Insulation resists heat flow and when that attic bakes to a 130 or 140 degrees in the summer time the heat eventually radiates down into the living space causing a big load on our air-conditioning system and an uncomfortable home. We can reduce that with insulation.

Insulation in Attics act as a barrier. In a northern climate we would like the heat to stay inside the house and in Texas we would like to keep it out. Insulation resists heat flow and your first priority when thinking of how to optimize your HVAC system is to think about a properly insulated attic.

All homes, regardless of what climate they are in, should be air-sealed, so there is no excessive air exchange from inside to outside. Some parts of the house are under positive pressure and some are under negative pressure and the air will move through a hole depending on the amount of difference of pressure and so we need to air seal our homes as a first step to make them energy efficient. Where would we air seal, well, there are a lot of places to air seal and the attic is our “A” priority.

Start by digging through the blown in insulation to find all of the top plates of all of the interior wall and look for gaps between the drywall and the wall and seal it with a sealant. Also look for holes where the wiring goes in the house and seal those holes with a sealant. The holes for the wires are usually too big and air will flow in or out. The air flowing in is un-conditioned and will need to be heated or cooled to a comfortable level which will raise our energy bill.

Another issue which is fairly common is a chase, there are duct chases or plumbing chases in homes, and its a big hole where air from inside the house can get right up into the attic and on the flip side when the attic heats up to a 140 degrees that basically hot air bisecting the middle of the house and heating up the walls. This will need to be air sealed to make the house energy efficient.

Someone had blown in fiberglass insulation in the past but paid no attention this huge gap between interior walls and this is typical of what an insulation contractor would do. It’s easy to blow in insulation, that’s the easy part. They will come in and blow insulation in your attic and it will probably take them an hour and they will be gone.

And you will be left with this but you have all these air leaks underneath the insulation that allow the conditioned air from inside the house to leak out in to the attic. And now its even more difficult for a professional to go back in to fix the problems underneath all the insulation. Because they will have to dig through all this insulation to find every pipe and wire hole, every plumbing and duct chase, every top plate of interior walls, every canned light to air seal the house properly before it is insulated, which by the way how it should have been done in the first place.

Insulation without air sealing is a malpractice. If you would like to make your home more comfortable, more energy efficient and improve your indoor air quality call Carlos at +1-832-366-4862.

How it Works?

While air conditioners can differ from model to model, they all operate on similar principles. In this passage we will explain how an air conditioner operates as well as potential problems you may encounter.

when you switch the air conditioner ON the thermostat control sends 120 volts of alternating current to the compressor and the fan motor. The compressor acts like a pump, compressing refrigerant in gas form into the condenser coils located near the back of the unit where the gas is condensed into a hot liquid. The condenser coils dissipate the heat as the liquid travels through them.

Once the refrigerant has passed through the condenser coils and the capillary tubes it travels to the evaporator coils located near the front of the unit. As the refrigerant liquid enters into these coils it expands into gas which makes the coils cold. The gas flows through the coils to a suction line attached to the compressor. The compressor converts the gas back into liquid and the cooling cycle continues. At the same time the fan motor rotates a blower wheel which draws in air to be cooled by the evaporator coils before re-circulating it back into the room. The same motor also operates the condenser fan blade which blows outside air through the condenser coils to cool them. The air temperature is regulated by the thermostat control.

Cold, Dry, Harsh Air

Is the cold harsh air making your skin crawl? Check out how a humidifier can help cure eczema.

Too much or too little humidity contributes to a number health related problems. Whether it is drying out your sinuses, whether it is increasing the mold, bacteria or virus growth in the house. It can do a tremendous amount of different things which is going to affect your health which is why you want to regulate the humidity. For most markets here in the southwest, western United States, Northern United States, you need to add humidity back into the air, especially in the winter. Because if you are using natural gas for heating up the house the natural gas is going to actually remove humidity from the air as it burns. Which is going to make your house even dryer. Most people don’t realize this but humidifiers have to be sized for your house. That’s why you all have probably met somebody who said “Ooh the damn thing never worked, I never noticed the difference”it’s probably because it was done wrong.

You see this a lot when people go to the hardware store and they buy their own humidifier and they put it on and its only built to do a 800 square foot house and they are using it on a 4000 square foot house and they are going “hmm why doesn’t this work?”, it’s because they don’t know what they are doing.

There are three main types of humidifiers that most people think about or maybe four if you include the room humidifiers.

But the room humidifiers generally don’t put enough humidity in the house to make a difference. They may help you when you are sick and you have one right next to your bed but it cannot increase the humidity levels throughout the house. So basically for the purpose of our discussion there are three types of humidifiers and they are:

  1. The Bypass Humidifier : It’s one that connects to the furnace and uses the heat from the furnace in order to evaporate the water and add humidity into the house. It works very well, but the problem is that it only works when the furnace is running. So if it’s a mild day and your furnace is not running very much then the humidifier is not running enough either.
  2. The Powered Humidifier: This kind has it own fan and have everything connected to it can push out air as well so that it can continue to provide needed humidity even when the furnace is not running. Specially if you are using a high efficiency motor and you are letting the motor run, it can constantly keep adding the humidity in the air.
  3. The Steam Humidifier:If you have a medical condition or something like that, steam works out really really well. A friends son was born prematurely and the doctor warned him that he will probably have some medical conditions, he was probably going to have asthma and allergies and probably going to be sensitive to certain things. Luckily since we filtered the air the kid never had asthma and allergies but he actually developed eczema, and so his skin would dry out tremendously random times in the year and it would hurt and it would just feel terrible. So we installed a steam humidifier in his house so that the year around, no matter how hot it was, no matter how cold it was the humidity level would stay at a very specific level inside the house. Ever since then his son’s skin has never dried out, he has never had a problem. Even though he goes to school for 6 or 7 hours, the air quality inside the house is so beneficial that he has never had a problem again. Thats just one of the many example of how the right amount of humidity can affect your health.People who have moved from a dry climate, this could be a geographic move or even change of weather, a humidifier can help maintain the quality of life.

As cold temperature set in humidity levels drop.Cold air is unable to hold as much moisture as warm air. Because of this when we heat our homes the humidity levels can drop to as much as 10 percent. This is dryer than the Sahara desert and can lead to dryer skin as well as nose and throat discomfort. It can also cause static electricity and plants and furniture to dry out. Most people feel the discomfort when humidity levels drop below 25%. A comfortable humidity level should be between 40 and 60%.Humidifiers are a great solution to restore humidity to your home. A comfortable humidity level can help relieve dry air discomforts. It offers a solution to counteract the effects of dry harsh winter air by adding essential moisture to any room. Proper humidity can also remove static shocks. Comfortable humidity will also keep the throat and nasal passages hydrated which can help you breath better and sleep more comfortably. Comfortable humidity can temporarily relieve congestion and cough.It addition it protects furniture because low humidity causes wood to lose moisture and shrink.Extreme changes can cause warping and cracking. Lastly, maintaining proper humidity levels inside your home will keep your plants healthier.