Tips for Choosing the right AC Repair Team

By | HVAC Tips

Does the heating and cooling contractor I choose make a difference?

Leading consumer and trade magazines resound a definite “yes, the heating and cooling contractor makes a difference.” The US Department of Energy informs us that the same equipment may be installed in the same home by two different contractors with drastically different results. A poorly installed unit results in higher energy bills and inefficient heating or cooling. Choosing an uncertified or inexperienced team may be a costly mistake.

It’s important to choose a well established heating and cooling contractor, a contractor who knows the trade. Pittman Heating and Air Conditioning is just such a contractor. Heating and cooling contractors come and go like the seasons, but inexperienced contractors may incorrectly install the unit – incorrectly installed units can cost the consumer money. Pittman Heating and Air Conditioning has served upstate South Carolina since 1972. This team possesses the experience and knowledge to do the job right.

Nobody would consult an unlicensed doctor and nobody should seek advice from unlicensed heating and cooling specialists. Pittman Heating and Air Conditioning’s team members are NATE certified, factory trained, bonded and insured. These factory trained specialists possess encyclopedic knowledge of heating and cooling.

A heating or cooling unit should fit your house’s requirements. There’s no reason to use a kiln to heat an egg. Pittman Heating and Air Condition conducts a load analysis to properly size new equipment.

When looking for a heating and cooling specialist, it’s essential to investigate any company prior to employing them. Check their record with the State Attorney General’s office, Better Business Bureau and referral services like Angie’s List. Lastly, seek referrals from friends, family and neighbors with similar values and needs. If they’re with the service and happy, chances are that you’ll be satisfied as well.

Pittman Heating and Air Conditioning strives to satisfy. As a matter of ethics, we are upfront about the services we will be providing, expectations of service and pricing. Our team will gladly guide you through the process in of upgrading, installing or repairing your heating and cooling system.

What is a SEER rating?

By | HVAC Tips

A SEER Rating is a measurement of efficiency. The higher Seer Rating an AC unit is rewarded, the more efficiently the unit produces cool air. An efficient air-conditioner saves money and the planet. Efficiently running AC units are better for the environment because they consume less energy.

Newer units are labeled with a SEER Rating. If you own an older unit, or can’t find the label, call the friendly folks at Pittman AC. The will come out and evaluate the efficiency of your current HVAC unit for you.

A SEER Rating, Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, is a calculation of how efficient an AC unit performs, much like miles per gallon in your car. These ratings range from 13 to 25. A Seer Rating is arrived at by calculating the average performance and the volume of cooling output per unit of energy. The higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the system. More efficient systems save money. However, actual savings depend on household insulation, size of house and price per kilowatt hour paid.

The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio calculates the energy, and money, an AC unit consumes during a year’s operation.  Moreover, the United States Department of Energy (DOE) requires all contemporary air-conditioning units to meet an efficiency rating of thirteen. All AC units, produced post 2006, must possess a SEER rating of thirteen or above. However, many models go above and beyond this minimum.

Air-conditioning units with a higher SEER Rating come with a heftier price tag. It’s said that “efficiency comes at a price.” And, that is true of HVAC units as well. Technologically advanced units, and better performing equipment, offer better temperature control and greater a level of comfort. But this efficiency and comfort come at a price, for example, a unit with a SEER rating of 17 may add $2500 to your purchase. However, it may save you a lot of money over the long-term ownership of the unit — often times you will realize much more savings compared to the initial cost of the high efficiency unit itself.

Call the friendly folks at Pittman AC to further discuss SEER Ratings. They will gladly come out to give you a free estimate and cost verse reward of a high efficiency system.

How To Save Money on Your AC Bill

By | HVAC Tips

The thermostat isn’t a magic box, however, many respond to their energy bill with shock and wonder.

A few simple tactics will lower your energy bill and increase the air conditioner’s efficiency. An efficiently running air conditioner has a constant temperature, relative to it’s setting, and saves money. Moreover, a reduction in energy consumption is good for the environment.

One of the easiest ways to reduce energy consumption is to set the thermostat to a higher temperature. With a lessened workload, the air conditioner consumes fewer kilowatt hours of energy. However, most people don’t want to sacrifice comfort, especially during South Carolina’s dog days of Summer.

Keeping your vents clean of debris greatly increases an air conditioning unit’s efficiency and lowers energy bills — and opening vents allows for airflow. Keep the vents open and clean is a good way to increase efficiency and save money. When airflow is restricted the air conditioning unit must work twice as hard to cool the house.

It’s important to change your air conditioner’s filters. It’s suggested to replace filters monthly. Dirty filters reduce the unit’s ability to run efficiently and dirty filters will circulate polluted air — causing allergies to be released indoors. Filters aren’t expensive and can be purchased in bulk.

For those who know about HVAC, these tactics are basic, however, most people don’t think of these simple ways to save money and increase the air conditioner’s efficiency. Moreover, routine maintenance, such as replacing air filters, eases the air conditioner unit’s workload and keeps household air free from pollution.

Gas VS Electric Furnaces

By | HVAC Tips

Gas and electric furnaces accomplish the same task; they both tell Jack Frost to pack his bags and leave. However, they go about accomplishing the task in different ways. Both gas and electric furnaces rely on a forced air heating system and a thermostat to rid the home of Winter’s bite, however, the similarities end there. Moreover, each system possesses its own pros and cons.

The thermostat sends an ignition signal to the gas unit and the pilot ignites the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger gathers heat from the main burner and exhales warm air that circulates throughout the house. Contrastingly, an electric furnace receives the signal from the thermostat and triggers electronic heating elements, hot air is then forced into rooms of the house. In both gas and electric furnaces, warm air is exhaled through into ductwork via a blower, the forced air heating system.

Although many DIY articles are circulating on the internet, it requires a professional to install a heating system. Installing a gas heating system requires dealing with a combustible gas, and electric systems run off of high voltage.

In a gas unit, the heat exchanger and other elements must be tightly sealed to prevent Carbon Monoxide leaks. Specialized tools are required to ensure that the system is properly installed. Moreover, electric units require a post-installation inspection. Installation must meet certain requirements for safety.

Electric furnaces are the choice for those concerned with efficiency. Electric furnaces may possess a rating of 100 percent on the AFUE scale, gas furnaces range from 55 to 97 percent. However, higher efficiency may be achieved in gas furnaces with an intermittent, direct spark, or hot surface ignition.

Call Pittman Heating and Air Conditioning today to discuss your options and choose the right system for you.

DIY AC Maintenance

By | HVAC Tips

Most take their central air-conditioning system for granted, by flipping a switch, and through the wonder that is electricity, the condenser revs and chilled air is pumped into every room of the house. However, much like a car, an air-conditioning unit requires routine maintenance. A great deal of the maintenance can be done without calling the friendly team at Pittman AC.

Basic maintenance requires removing debris from the AC, and replacing air filters. Central air-conditioning units are composed of an Air Handler, Evaporator and Compressor. Debris is easily removed from theses components.

Before You Begin

It’s essential to disconnect and power-down the AC unit prior to performing any maintenance, air-conditioning units are driven by a 240-volt outlet and can administer a deadly shock. Moreover, the Condenser houses its own service panel. The Service Panel is easily identified by the lever, circuit-breaker and fuses. There’s a high-voltage capacitor within the service panel that stores a half hour of charge. Allow at least half an hour for the capacitor to drain before undertaking any work on the unit.

Condenser Unit

Removing debris from the Condenser Unit may be done easily, and without calling a professional. The Condenser Unit is a large fan encased by a metal box. This fan moves air across radiator coils. Simply, dismantle the side panels and wipe away debris. A vacuum or radiator brush makes this task a cinch. Moreover, if the radiator’s fins are accidentally bent during this process, they may be easily straightened with a fine tooth comb.

Cleaning Debris

Often, debris collects at the base of the Condenser Unit, this debris can greatly effect the performance of the unit. Leaves or plant material may be easily scooped or vacuumed up. Additionally, if the unit possesses a drain, remove any material that may cause a backup. Don’t forget to tighten screws around the fan motor mounting unit.

Conclusion

After completing these simple maintenance steps, test the unit. If chilled air doesn’t fill your home, call the friendly team at Pittman AC. Remember, any repairs to the sealed refrigeration system and replacing hoses must be handled by the professionals at Pittman AC.

*Sourced from Hometips.com

Summarizing Your AC System

By | HVAC Tips

During the cooler months of the year, air-conditioning units are left in a state of hibernation, they collect debris and dust. After this state of hibernation, some simple maintenance may be required for the unit to function properly. This maintenance is referred to as summerizing.

South Carolina’s summers are sweltering, outside temperatures stagnate around 90 degrees. Without air-conditioning, heat creeps in like an uninvited guest and doesn’t leave. It’s essential to summerize your AC, to ensure that it runs efficiently throughout the Summer. Moreover, summerizing your AC may be easily achieved without calling the friendly folks at Pittman AC.

Filters

Routinely cleaning or replacing your air-conditioning unit’s filter allows for lower electricity consumption and healthier living. An air-conditioning unit’s efficiency may be greatly reduced by restricted air flow, and a dirty air filter allows allergens to infiltrate your home.

Usually, the filter is located on the return air duct, inside the home. There’s no need to power-down the unit before replacing air filters. Air-conditioning filters come in a variety of sizes. When replacing the filter be sure to purchase the correct size.

Debris

Remember to disconnect the unit prior to any work. Air-conditioning units carry 240 volts, a hundred and thirty more than the average appliance!

Once you’ve powered-down the unit (disconnected it from the power source) and allowed half an hour for any capacitors to discharge, remove the side panels. The side panels may be easily removed with a screwdriver. Rid the unit of any debris that may have collected. Additionally, unearth weeds that are growing inside the unit.

To prevent the collection of debris, during the next cold season, cover the unit with a tarp.

Hoses

Leaky hoses may greatly reduce an air-conditioner’s ability to cool. Hoses deliver coolant from the Evaporator to the Air Handler. These hoses are typically covered with an insulating foam. While the side panel is removed, examine the hoses and cover leaky lines with insulating sleeves or heavy duty tape.

Conclusion

Summerizing your AC ensures that the unit will run efficiently throughout the hotter months of the year. Additionally, those who maintain their system may avoid costly repairs.

What is Air Conditioning?

By | HVAC Tips

Like all complex machines, air-conditioners are composed of independent parts that work together to perform one task. However, an AC uniquely possesses the task of relieving us from Summer’s unrelenting heat.

Most of us take air-conditioning for granted, never pausing to ponder how this complex machine works, or who invented it. According to Carrier.com, air-conditioner’s fundamental building block was created by Willis Carrier. Standing on a Pittsburgh train terminal, during 1902, Carrier realized he could dry air by passing it through water. Within a year, Carrier completed his invention to control humidity, and solidified the fundamentals of air-conditioning.

How does it work

Air-conditioners chills our houses, but what are they? Simply put, they’re complex machines that keep us cool during the Dog Days of Summer. Yet, the inner workings of the World’s most chilling device are complex. According to Energy.gov, air-conditioners circulate chilled air through a network of supply ducts, return ducts and registers. Registers are grill covered openings in the walls, floors or ceiling. The chilled air becomes warmer as it circulates throughout the home, the network of ducts and registers return the lukewarm air to the air-conditioning unit. This cycle allows air to maintain a constant temperature.

Aside from ducts and registers, an AC unit is composed of a Compressor, Condenser Coil, and Air Handler. These components are housed in the air-conditioner unit, unlike ducts and registers, which are part the house.

The Compressor is a fan embedded in refrigeration coils (Condenser Coils). Inefficiently performing coils consume excess electricity and may inhibit the unit from cooling the home. The Condenser Coil releases heat absorbed by the refrigerant. According to Hometips.com, the Condenser Coil and the Compressor “extract heat through refrigeration technology.” The Air handler circulates chilled and dehumidified air through network of ducts.

Conclusion

Without Willis Carrier’s invention, the dehumidifier, our homes would be sweltering, especially those of us living in South Carolina’s sub-tropical climate. Pittman AC offers praise to the genius who invented AC. Trane has continued to improve upon this invention for many years and Pittman Heating and Air Conditioning is proud to be a Trane Comfort Specialist.