Dampness in the walls or yellowing of the walls around the vents is a sign of leaking vents. For any homeowner, this is a problem that can have grave consequences. It can cause mold formation, algae growth, water puddles that destroy the floor, damage the furniture, and increase indoor humidity. To ...
Pollution is the bane of modern-day existence. There are so many pollutants, and allergens in the air both inside and outside the home, that using artificial methods to clean it have become necessary. Air pollution does not consist of only factory fumes and vehicle exhaust. It also consists of dust, dander, pollen, and mold spores. Breathing in air that is not clean is a health hazard. Though there isn’t much that one can do to reduce the contaminants in the air outside their homes, other than fulfilling their environmental duty, we can still improve the quality of indoor. HEPA air filters are the key to making the air inside your home cleaner.
What Are HEPA Air Filters?
As defined by the U.S. Department of Energy, HEPA is an acronym that stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air (Filter). It is basically a pleated mechanical air filter that can trap minute contaminants present in the air. Theoretically, its efficiency is 99.97%, which means that it can trap that amount of airborne particles measuring at least 0.3 microns (µm).
Why At Least 0.3 Microns?
O.3 microns is considered by the scientists to be the Most Penetrating Particle Size or MMPS. According to them, these size particles tend to escape the air filters the most.
What Are HEPA Filters Made Of?
The modern HEPA filters are made of interlaced borosilicate glass fibers or plastic fibers that are twisted and turned in numerous directions creating a fibrous maze. They are usually bound together with approximately 5% acrylic binder.
How HEPA Filters Trap Airborne Particles
Air is forced through a fine mesh, which is the HEPA filter, and airborne particles are taken out of circulation as they travel through this maze. There are usually 4 ways in which the particles get trapped:
1. Direct Impact – large particles travel in a straight line and hit the fiber head-on, causing them to stick to it.
2. Sieving – A particle gets trapped between two fibers when it is bigger than the gap between them.
3. Diffusion – Small particles move haphazardly and hence are more likely to collide with one of the many fibers and get ensnared.
4. Interception – Inertia continues to move an airborne particle along a definite path, and the fiber that comes in contact with it traps it.
Can HEPA Filters Make For A Healthy Home?
To a vast extent, the HEPA filters can make the air inside your home clean. So yes, they make for healthier homes. But can they eliminate 100% of the airborne contaminants? The answer is, “No”. As stated above, they are only 99.97% efficient. They cannot capture all the allergens, viruses, and bacteria, but they can definitely reduce their concentration inside your home.
You will notice a definite reduction in the frequency with which you or your family members fall ill once you start using the HEPA filters. Additionally, the severity of allergies will also drop considerably. This difference is due to the drastic reduction in the concentration of impurities suspended in the air.
HEPA filters are especially useful when you are remodeling your home. The dust and chemicals find their way into the air and degrade the indoor air quality. When these particles move across the filters, they become trapped and are unable to find their way back into circulation.
Limitation Of HEPA Filters
There are two main limitations of the HEPA filters:
1. They Are Not 100% Efficient – The HEPA filters can only trap or capture 99.97% of the suspended or airborne pollutants. They cannot guarantee completely pure air as they are not 100% efficient.
2. They Can Only Capture Airborne Contaminants – All impurities and pollutants are not always airborne. Many times, when they are too big or heavy, they settle on surfaces. Touching these contaminated surfaces can still make you fall ill. The HEPA filters cannot eliminate these settled contaminants.
How Can You Make Your Home Healthier
Using HEPA filters in your home air purification system is the best way to improve the indoor air quality. Other than that here are a couple more ways in which you can make the air inside your home cleaner and thus healthier:
1. Identify the source of allergens and irritants and try to get rid of them completely. If, for example, cigarette smoke is the culprit, don’t smoke indoors. Else identify an area in your home that is separate from the main structure to smoke. This way, your HVAC system will not pick the cigarette smoke and circulate it throughout your home.
2. Vacuum and dust all upholstery and surfaces regularly. Air out the carpets and wash the bedding frequently.
3. There are many indoor plants that clean the air quite effectively. You can place these plants throughout the home to uplift the mood, improve its aesthetics, and also clean the air.
4. Allow natural sunlight to disinfect your home. The UV rays present in it are extremely effective in killing most viruses and bacteria. Also, air out your home from time to time to reduce the concentration of pollutants in the air inside.
5. If you have pets, groom them regularly. They need to be given a bath as per need and brushed every day to reduce dander, which is a very common allergen.
HEPA filters are not a stand-in for following and maintaining adequate hygiene; neither do they replace the need for doctor’s advice. These filters are only an additional but very effective way to improve the quality of air inside the home. We spend a significant amount of time indoors with our families, so the air that we breathe needs to be healthy. The HEPA filters ensure just that.
The air experts at Aztil Air Conditioning strongly recommend using HEPA filter air purification systems in homes. We can help you choose the one that fits your needs and home the best. Residents of West Palm Beach, Florida, can contact us at +1-888-729-8452 to further discuss their options. We also provide HVAC repair and maintenance services, so we are your one-stop solution for all home comfort solutions.
An air conditioner that breaks down frequently often forces the homeowner to make a difficult choice between repairing the AC or replacing it. This decision is not always easy to make as our nature forces us to go with the cheaper option, which may not always be the best one under the circumstances. When making this critical decision, there are certain factors that you have to consider. Based on them, you can make the most suitable choice.
Repair Your AC Or Replace Your AC
This, my dear, is a question or a conundrum that can make even the best ones go around in circles. The question does not have a correct answer as the answer will change situation to situation. So here are those key factors that will help you make the right decision.
1. Age Of The AC – In optimal conditions, an AC can run for 15 to 20 years. But optimal conditions are extremely hard to find. Therefore, the average lifespan of an AC is usually 10 to 15 years, provided that it receives timely and regular annual maintenance. If your AC is already approaching this benchmark figure, it may be wise to think that quite soon, it will be time to replace. The question that you need to ask yourself at this time is whether you want to ward off that occurrence for some more time by opting for a repair, or you’d rather do away with the need for repair and replace the air conditioner. In the long run, replacing an aging unit is a wiser decision and a better investment. We say so because the repair of an old unit is not always a guarantee that it will not give any further problems. Problems may occur, and that too frequently, piling up the repair bills.
2. What’s Not Working – The most logical thing is first to figure out what is not working in the AC or where does the fault lie. If its a relatively inexpensive component, repair makes more sense. Electrical faults usually lie in this category. So even when things appear to be grim, they may not be so. However, if the faulty component is expensive, like the compressor, it is better to go with the replacement option. It stands especially true if your cooling system is old and outdated. Then there may be some issues that could swing either way, for example, refrigerant leak. Fixing one or two sources of leaks in the coil is easy, but if the entire coil has fallen prey to corrosion, the same procedure becomes not just time-consuming but expensive as well. Ultimately, you need to figure out the most financially viable option. In the case of old units needing expensive repair, we strongly recommend replacement.
3. Frequency Of Repairs – If your AC needs frequent repairs, it does not mean that you need to replace it. Always go for a second opinion. There is always a chance that the quality of the repair was not up to the standard. There is also a possibility that the problem was not diagnosed correctly and hence, the need for continuous repairs. At such a time, changing the technician or the contractor will bring in a fresh perspective and may resolve the issue without the need for replacement. However, if that, too, does not work, your only remaining option is to replace the AC. Then again, its a matter of managing your finances to bear the expenditure of purchasing and installing the new unit. So, the final decision rests on whether you can manage the replacement expense immediately or not.
4. Cost Of Repairs – If the total cost of repairs for your AC in a year is high, there is no point in spending more doing the same. But what exactly constitutes the high cost of repair? Well, it isn’t a fixed dollar value as what is high for one person may not be so for another. A new AC can cost anywhere between $5,000 to $7,000. So, first, get an estimate of how much a new AC will cost, and that does not include ductwork and such. After that, it’s a simple formula:
Total Cost Of Repairs x The Age Of The AC (in years) < Cost Of New AC
As long as the repair cost multiplied by the age of your AC in years is less than the cost of a new AC, it’s fine to repair your AC. However, when it becomes more, it’s time to replace your AC.
5. Unit’s Energy Efficiency – The newer models of air conditioners in the market are far more energy-efficient than the older ones. Even if your old AC is working fine, but your energy bills show an incremental trend without the electricity company having changed its rates, you may need to rethink your options. The energy savings rendered by the new units is simply astounding. The amount you save each month on the utility bills will become a substantial figure by the year-end more than validating the need for replacement. If your AC is more than 10 years old, it makes all the more sense to think seriously about replacement. You will not only save on the cost of repairs but also get significant savings in the power bill making up for the expense of new AC.
The Final Verdict
The final verdict on replace the AC or repair the AC is in your own hands. The experts at Aztil Air Conditioning recommend replacement of AC if the air conditioner is old, asking for frequent repairs, not cooling the home properly, and increasing your power bills. For some reason, if you cannot bear such a big expense immediately, you can tide over for some time by going for repair. Though that will only be a short term respite. Yet another way around is to look for finance options. Most reputed and established contractors have quite attractive finance options to suit everyone’s pockets.
In case you are a resident of West Palm Beach, Florida, and need further information or a second opinion regarding any issues with your air conditioner, feel free to contact us at +1-888-729-8452. We are available 24/7 and will look forward to helping you.
In a central heating and cooling system, there is usually an AC that provides cooling and furnace that provides the heating. Unlike that, in a ductless system, the same components provide both heating and cooling. As a result, they need twice the care. The maintenance is delivered in the form of a tune-up, the absence of which will prevent you from enjoying the full benefits of your system.
Why The Ductless System Needs A Tune-Up?
A heating and cooling system, whether ducted or ductless, works days tirelessly on end. Continuous operations for long periods of time result in its wear and tear due to which some parts may become loose or start rubbing against each other, creating friction. The air that passes through the unit will also leave in its wake dust and other debris that accumulate inside the unit and cause interference in its working. An AC Tune-Up takes care of all these aspects and ensures that the unit is working efficiently.
Myth – Ductless ACs Don’t Require Tune-Up
The origin of this myth lies in the fact that most HVAC issues arise due to faulty ductwork. So if the ductwork is removed from the equation, a large part of the problems will not occur. Important is to note that ducts may play a major role in the probable cause of the problem, but they are not always the cause. Consequently, it is terrible to jump to conclusions and assume that a ductless system will not need any maintenance.
Fact – Ductless Systems Need Twice More Maintenance
As we mentioned above, a mini-split system or a ductless system caters to both the heating and cooling needs of your home. It works twice as hard as the HVAC, where heating is provided by the furnace and cooling by the air conditioner. An HVAC demands an annual tune-up. Therefore, the ductless system which works, even more, needs a semi-annual tune-up. One maintenance should be carried out at the onset of summer and the other just before the winters set in. The two tune-ups at a gap of 6 months will allow the mini-split system to keep the home at a comfortable temperature throughout the year.
Things That Are Checked During Tune-Up Of Ductless AC
All electrical and mechanical systems need a tune-up, and so does your mini-split system. Ductless AC tune-up or maintenance is a technical process that is best handled by professional HVAC technicians or contractors. It involves:
1. Checking for refrigerant leaks and loose electrical connections.
2. The run capacitors are given a thorough once over.
3. The hoses are inspected for any blockages.
4. The indoor and outdoor units, along with the filter of the indoor units, will be given a thorough cleaning.
5. Moving parts are lubricated to reduce friction and the wear and tear,
6. The thermostat is also given a once over to ensure that it is functioning satisfactorily.
In case any problems are detected by the technician during AC tune-up, they will bring them to your notice and carry out the necessary repairs after taking your consent.
Can You Do Tune-Up For Your Mini-Split System?
The mini-split system installed in your home is a costly investment that you wish to protect at all costs. You want to get full value for money from its use and also keep it in perfect working order till the very end. The urge to do an AC tune-up might hit you from time to time. If it does, remember that you cannot tackle all the activities that are a part of professional maintenance. Having said that, there are a couple of things that you can do with ease and will tide you over for a couple of days until you can afford the professional tune-up. So, here is a list of things that you can do for your mini-split system safely:
1. One of the simplest things that you can do is keep the outside of the indoor and outdoor units clean. Dusting both once a week will prevent any dust and debris from entering the unit.
2. Keep the area around the outdoor unit free of any obstructions. If there are bushes growing, cut them down. If there are dead leaves and clutter around it, sweep them away. The basic idea is to keep the vicinity free of any such thing that can restrict the free flow of air and damage the unit during a gale or high winds.
3. The ductless ACs tend to amass ice and snow when they are run for heating. In winters, regularly inspect the exterior of the unit for any deposits and build-ups. If you find any, carefully remove them.
4. You can also clean the air filter inside the air handler. Carefully remove them, the instructions for the same can be found in the manual that came with your unit, and wipe them clean. The instruction manual will also tell you how often it should be done.
5. The biggest challenge is to know your limitations and accept them. Do not try to do more than what the manufacturer and the HVAC technician approves. If you try to do everything yourself and in the process cause any damage to the unit, it will not be covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Call the HVAC technician for AC tune-up and also when you suspect that something is wrong with it. Refrain from making your AC your pet DIY activity.
The ductless AC systems need a semi-annual tune-up to keep them operating efficiently throughout the year. If anyone tells you otherwise, they are misinformed. These systems though small in size, are still complicated, and one cannot overlook their maintenance for the sake of saving a few dollars. Ultimately, this penny pinching may come back to bite you in the form of costly repairs.
The air experts at Aztil Air Conditioning are eager to assist the residents of West Palm Beach, Florida, in regards to their heating and cooling systems. You can reach out to our elite team anytime, 24/7, at +1-888-729-8452.
If a burning smell is coming from your AC, you needn’t always worry. Nonetheless, its always good to err on the side of caution and stay safe rather than feeling sorry later. So, if at any time, your AC smells like burning plastic or rubber or some other burning substance, the first call of action is to shut down the unit and cut its power supply. Now that the most important step has been taken care of, the next step is to diagnose the problem.
If your AC smells like it’s burning, call the HVAC experts at Aztil Air Conditioning to help you figure out the problem and rectify it. You can reach us either by clicking on the above link or calling at +1-888-729-8452.
Probable Causes Of Why AC Smells Like Its Burning
Here is a list of the most likely reasons that may be responsible for that burning smell emanating from the air conditioner.
1. Dust Burning Off – When you live in areas that have a predominantly hot climate, there is seldom any reason to switch on the heating. However, freak weather conditions may force your hand. In case you turned on the heating after a long period of time, there might be some burning smell coming from the AC. In this scenario, you don’t really have to worry because the burning AC smell is normal. Not being in use for months, the HVAC system collects dust. When you switch it on, the system burns off the accumulated dust, thereby giving the foul AC smell that resembles a burning substance.
The Solution – What you need to do in this case is to wait for a couple of minutes, and the burning odor will go away on its own. But if even after a couple of minutes, the smell persists, call your local HVAC technician.
2. A Fire In Home – A burning smell is coming from within the AC; it does not always mean that something is burning inside it. Often it so happens that the fire may actually be elsewhere in the house, and the air circulating via the AC has picked it up. Look for signs of smoke or fire in the house.
The Solution – When you detect fire or smoke inside the house that is beyond your scope of putting off using a fire extinguisher, evacuate the house quickly and call 911.
3. Clogged Air Filter – If it’s been quite some time since you last changed your air filters, the chances are pretty high that they are completely jammed with dust and debris. When the air filters are blocked, they hinder the free flow of air. Restricted airflow puts tremendous stress on the fan, motor, and other parts, causing the AC to overheat and produce the burning smell.
The Solution – Replace your air filters at the very least once every quarter. Though during the peak of summers, they should be changed every month.
4. Motor Overheating – The fan inside the AC requires a motor to turn it. Constant use wears out the bearings of the motor, causing it to overheat and the resultant burning smell.
The Solution – The first time you encounter this problem, lubricate or grease the bearings. It will extend the life of the motor. It will also prevent the motor from going belly up ultimately. Once that happens, your only option is to replace it.
5. Belt Overheating – Some air conditioners have a belt-drive motor while others a direct-drive motor. The belt in the belt-drive motor systems is made of rubber. Heat and continuous use wear out the belt, which results in the burnt rubber AC smell.
The Solution – Since the belt is made up of rubber, it has to be replaced eventually. The fact that you smell burning rubber is an indication that the time to change it. is now.
6. Broken Capacitor – All air conditioners have a capacitor that powers the motor. The capacitor can go bad for a multitude of reasons, including a power surge to regular wear and tear. A fault in the capacitor can cause the motor to overheat and release a burning smell.
The Solution – Here, the only solution is to call an HVAC technician to replace the faulty capacitor with a new reliable one. This task you cannot handle on your own; it is best left to the professionals.
7. Electrical Problem – The burning plastic or rubber smell can also be an indication of an electrical problem within your unit. The wiring within the unit is surrounded by plastic components. When the wires burn, they can also cause damage to the plastic parts resulting in additional sulfur-like smell or rotten eggs smell. It usually happens when there are loose screws, defective breakers, or worn out wires in your system.
The Solution – This, too, is a scenario where only a trained technical HVAC expert can help you. So without wasting any time, switch off your air conditioner and call your local HVAC contractor for help.
How To Prevent Burning AC Smell?
The best way to prevent burning smells coming from the AC is by making sure that it gets periodic annual maintenance as is its due. Do not overlook the importance of maintenance as the source of most of the smells will be addressed during the course of the tune-up. Other than that, keep your AC clean and change its air filters regularly so that they are never clogged.
Contact Aztil Air Conditioning For AC Repair In West Palm Beach
It is best to leave the air conditioning troubleshooting to the experts. We are not only trained but also skilled in handling such problems. If your AC is releasing foul odors or any burning smells, immediately cut its power supply and call the elite team of trained professionals at Aztil Air Conditioning. We offer 24/7 emergency services and take all precautions to guarantee your safety.
We are looking forward to helping you make your home more comfortable. Call us any time at +1-888-729-8452 to book an appointment.
The need for an air conditioner in summers is obvious. Nobody wants to roast in the heat at home or, for that matter, even in the office or anywhere else. Now, you don’t really have any control over what happens in places other than your home. So trying to create the most relaxing and comforting ambiance in your abode is the best possible solution. An air conditioner is the center point of this cool comfort. It becomes extremely frustrating if the AC conks off at this time. However, if you are vigilant and pay heed to the signs that the AC displays, such situations can be avoided. Usually, an air conditioner will give several warning signals of problems developing inside it. If ignored, these issues escalate in proportion leading to the shutting down of the equipment.
One of the most common problem areas of the air conditioner is the compressor. It is the heart of your cooling unit and is tasked with pressurizing the refrigerant. When the refrigerant is adequately pressurized, only then can it absorb the heat from the air and make it cooler. A broken or faulty compressor is an expensive repair, one that may force you to buy a new cooling unit altogether. Therefore, it becomes all the more important to understand those signs, which indicate a failing compressor.
5 Signs That You Need AC Compressor Repair
If at any time your cooling unit displays any or more of these symptoms, it’s time that you need an AC compressor repair. But before we begin, remember that you need to get a qualified HVAC technician to validate the problem.
1. The Compressor Shakes On Starting – Under normal circumstances, the compressor does not jolt or shake the unit when starting. If the one in your AC is doing that, it means the compressor is finding it difficult to turn on. This phenomenon is also known as “Hard Starting”. If you ignore the problem at the onset, there is a very high chance that it will damage some costly parts of the unit, so much so that your only option remaining would be to buy a new compressor to replace the busted one. Sometimes the problem is as simple as a faulty relay switch, so it makes no sense to let the issue fester until it completely destroys the compressor. At the first sign of this trouble, switch off the AC and call your local HVAC contractor for AC compressor repair.
2. Warm Air Blows From The Unit – Despite the correct thermostat settings, if the air coming out of the AC is warm and cool, it points towards the fact that the compressor has lost its cooling efficiency. Mostly, this happens when there is a refrigerant leak. There could be other reasons as well, but in either case, you will have to call in the experts. Only a qualified and experienced technician can figure out the exact cause and take remedial actions. Even in the case of a refrigerant leak first, the source of the leak will have to be identified and plugged. Once that is done, the refrigerant will need topping. Both these activities can only be undertaken by an HVAC technician.
3. Abnormal Noises – Rattling, rumbling, and other similarly strange noises coming from the compressor are cause for concern. These indicate that there is some loose part inside the unit, which is thrashing around and damaging other components. It could even be the fan motor, which has somehow got dislodged from its original position. If you ignore these sounds, the strain on the system could become a cause for the compressor failure. The good news is that usually, this is not a very expensive fix, so it must be addressed posthaste. The bad news is that it is not a DIY activity, so you will have to call the AC technician to repair the fault.
4. Circuit Breaker Trips Frequently – When the compressor overheats, it trips the circuit breaker. As a result, the outdoor unit loses power. The reasons for overheating could be many like a power surge, refrigerant leak, loose wiring, malfunction of the fan motor, and so on. The important thing is that the circuit breaker trips to prevent any fire. Constantly resetting the breaker is, therefore, not a good solution. What you need is a full and final fix so that there is no tripping. The first step in ensuring that is to switch off the power supply to your AC so that there is no potential hazard. Next, call your technician to come and fix the problem. Once AC compressor repair is done, the air conditioner should work as well as before.
5. Compressor Fails To Start – The thermostat is set correctly, and the fan of the indoor unit is running fine, but when you go out to the condenser unit, the compressor appears to be completely silent. If that is the case, first go back to your thermostat and try lowering the temperature a couple of degrees. If the compressor still does not kick in, it could have already failed. Then again, this is a decision that you cannot take on your own. An HVAC technician will have to validate your finding. Once the technician agrees, your next step is to make a repair or replace decision. In the case of aging units, “Replace” is a more viable option.
Conclusion And The Lesson
AC compressors do go bad in spite of regular maintenance and adequate care. Mostly, the faults are small and quickly dealt with. The real problem arises when we ignore the signs of abnormal activity and let matter become more complicated. So the lesson is to never ignore any untoward noise or occurrence in your AC. At the very first sign of trouble, call the experts. The quicker you take action, the lesser is the repair cost and vice-versa.
Residents of West Palm Beach, Florida, need not look any further than Aztil Air Conditioning for all their cooling needs. Our expert technicians will take care of all the maintenance and repair needs of your home or office air conditioner. You can reach us anytime at +1-888-729-8452.
Being a proud owner of a house is not a very big deal. The big deal is to make the right decisions in its context so that the value of the home increases, and so does the comfort of its residents. One such major decision is concerning the type of air conditioning unit to install. The main confusion lies in choosing between ductless AC vs. the central AC unit.
To understand which option is the best for your home, read the complete comparison. It will give you more power to make an informed and wise decision.
Ductless Air Conditioners
The ductless ACs are also known as mini-split systems. As the name itself suggests, they do not use ducts. Hence, they are best for those homes that do not have pre-existing ductwork. The main benefit of these systems is that they are relatively inexpensive to install and more energy efficient as there is no chance of air escaping through the ducts. However, these units are always visible as they are installed directly on the walls of your house.
Central Air Conditioners
Central ACs are ducted. It means they use an extensive network of ducts to transport treated air into each room of the house. The central AC is a bulky piece of equipment. It is mostly installed outdoors and sometimes in the attic or on the roof. The cool air comes through the vents. Their main advantage is that they are invisible and unobtrusive and also the fact that they cool the entire home to the same degree.
Ductless AC Vs. Central AC Unit – Pros And Cons Pros Of Ductless Air Conditioners
The benefits of using ductless ACs are:
1. They are highly energy efficient.
2. The air handlers barely make any noise.
3. They are perfect for homes where there is no ductwork, and the homeowner does not want to invest in one.
4. Their installation is relatively easy and quick.
5. Their installation charges are low.
6. Their operational cost is around 30% less.
Cons Of Ductless Air Conditioners
There are some disadvantages to using ductless air conditioners. These are:
1. They are unable to cool the home in a uniform manner.
2. They are unable to improve indoor air quality.
3. One house may need several air handlers to cool it sufficiently.
4. The air handlers are visible and may spoil the aesthetics of your home.
Pros Of Central AC
Let’s have a peek at the advantages of using a central air conditioner.
1. They can cool the entire house at the same time.
2. Its air filters help improve the indoor air quality.
3. They do not spoil the aesthetics of your home as the cool air comes through the vents which are embedded in walls.
Cons Of Central AC
The central air conditioner, too, has its own set of disadvantages. Some of them are:
1. The cost of installing a central AC is quite steep.
2. It is noisy to operate and may require sound dampers to reduce its level.
3. Leakage in ducts can increase energy costs and lower its efficiency.
4. Energy-efficient systems are expensive.
5. They add almost 30% to the operational cost.
Ductless AC Vs. Central AC – Which One Is Right For You?
Now that you know the basic differences between the two types, it’s time to check which one suits you and your home the most. To do that here are a couple of questions that you need to answer.
1. Do You Have Ductwork? – If your home is old, the chances are that it will not have pre-existing ductwork. In such cases installing ductwork becomes a tricky and costly job. Your best option is to go for a ductless system that will not require any modifications to the structure of the home. Now, if your home does have ductwork, sticking to a central AC will be more cost-effective.
2. Do You Mind Looking At The AC? – A central AC is not visible while a ductless one is. If you think that you will mind looking at the AC, your choice is made. You should buy a central air conditioner.
3. Do You Mind The Noise? – A central AC is not exactly quite. However, the ductless ones barely make any. If you are sensitive to the sound, buy the ductless air conditioner.
4. What Is Your Budget? – Ductless air conditioners, along with their installation cost around $1,900 to $3,900. On the other hand, an installed central air conditioner will cost around $5,000 to $9,000.
5. How Important Is Energy Efficiency? – If you have a low budget and energy efficiency is your top priority, you need to stick with a ductless unit. Conversely, you can get an energy-efficient central AC on a higher budget. It is for you to decide what suits your pockets the most.
6. Is Individual Zoning Control High On Your Need? – There may be areas in your home that get more hot as compared to the rest of your house. Or your family members may have different temperature needs. In both these cases, you need a zoning system. It is possible to get zone control in both the ductless and central AC. However, it is cheaper with the ductless unit. It is because, in the case of central AC, a zoning system will require an upgrade to the ductwork in the form of internal dampers.
Ductless AC Can Be Used Along With Central AC
An important aspect of ductless AC is that it can be used together with the central air conditioner. This combination is explicitly used in homes where certain areas need additional cooling. It is also used where separate zones are needed for those areas that are not used frequently.
The above guidelines will help you get started on the general path to making the correct purchase decision. However, it is best to discuss your options, thoughts, and priorities with an HVAC expert so that you can benefit from their experience. No matter the system that you lean towards, talk it over with your technician, and buy the best fit for your home.
Every homeowner desires a cool home in summers and a warm and cozy one in winter. Throwing a wrench into these simple plans are some mistakes that homeowners commit unknowingly. They may appear to be inconsequential but have the tendency to run the HVAC unit into the ground.
Today, let’s take a few minutes to learn how you may be digging your HVAC unit’s grave. Invariably, you aren’t the only ones committing these blunders. There are others as well, so share your learnings to help the people around you.
How You Dig Your HVACs Grave?
Your heating and cooling system will last around 15 years if you take good care of it and don’t ignore any warning signs that it displays. Starting with the most common mistakes, we will move down to those that are rare but are equally dangerous to the longevity of the HVAC unit.
1. Ignoring Annual Maintenance – Every HVAC unit needs annual servicing or maintenance. Even the manufacturer asks for it for the warranty to remain active. However, many homeowners believe that maintenance is a wasteful activity. According to them, it costs money and renders no benefits. Well, here’s news for them. Maintenance involves many activities that guarantee the smooth running of the HVAC unit. Tightening of loose parts, cleaning of dust and debris accumulated inside the unit, inspection of the blower fan and motor, etc. are just some of the activities undertaken. These activities aim to catch any budding troubles in the system before they develop into bigger problems. Ignoring annual maintenance means forgoing the chance to correct issues within the system while they are still uncomplicated.
2. Overlooking Dirty Air Filters – Experts recommend changing the air filters every month. However, if, for some reason, that is not possible, the air filters should be changed at least once every quarter, which means four times a year. Since dirty air filters restrict the flow of air, they force the system to work harder due to which it heats up and breaks down. Clean air filters mean that the air flows freely into the system, and it does not have to operate under any undue pressure. A unit that breathes in easily will also breathe out efficiently, providing adequate heating and cooling.
3. Closed Or Blocked Vents – There are times when knowingly or unknowingly, the homeowners land up closing or blocking the vents. The room was not in use, so you thought closing the vent will save energy. Or you were tired of the same old set-up and changed the look by moving a few pieces of furniture completely unaware of the fact that you blocked one or more vents. Since the HVAC unit performs the same amount of work, closing or blocking the vents will disrupt its performance. Due to the closed vent, the air now has to move towards another location, but that is easier said than done. Mostly the ducts will spring a leak due to added pressure. In turn, the cooling will not be up to par anymore, and the unit will have to work under stress again without any success in achieving the previous efficiency.
4. Constantly Changing The Thermostat Settings – Changing the temperature settings on the thermostat throughout the day is a bad idea. It makes the unit work under stress due to the need to work between drastic temperature differences. It creates highs and lows that, in turn, leads to more wear and tear of the machinery. You need to maintain temperature consistency and make for any shortfalls by switching on the ceiling fan or drawing the blinds. If necessary, check the fan setting on the thermostat and change it to “ON” if it is on “AUTO”. You can also try adjusting the fan speed. Neither of these steps puts any strain on the HVAC unit and keeps it working efficiently for a very long time.
5. Not Paying Attention To The Size Of The Unit – There is no one size of the HVAC unit that suits all homes. Depending on the size of your home, the size of the unit will vary. Purchasing an oversized or undersized unit are both terrible decisions. An AC that is too small for your home will have to work harder and be under constant strain to produce the necessary cooling. Conversely, an AC that is too big, will frequently short-cycle and thereby increasing the power consumption. A proper sized AC will cool your home efficiently without heating up and consuming too much power.
6. Ignoring The Warning Signs – Mostly, when something starts going wrong in the HVAC unit, it starts giving some warning signs. These signs could vary from various noises coming from the unit to frequent tripping of the circuit breaker and many more in between. The idea is to recognize that something is different, and it was not there before. Once you realize that your HVAC unit is behaving abnormally, don’t ignore it because it is still working to your satisfaction. Ignoring the problem will escalate it to a bigger one, which may kill your unit untimely.
7. Incorrect Positioning Of The Thermostat – The thermostat has temperature sensors to judge the ambient temperature. These sensors are sensitive, and so the positioning of the thermostat is of significant importance. Placing the thermostat near appliances that generate heat or a sun-facing window will run havoc with the sensors. It boils down to the fact that the thermostat will be unable to judge the coolness or the warmth of the house correctly. Therefore, the thermostat should be placed away from any heat source. Neither should it be installed in a dark hallway, which is way cooler than the rest of your home. It will send wrong signals to the HVAC unit and make it work incorrectly.
The comfort of your family depends, to a very large extent, on your HVAC unit. To keep it running for years, you need to understand it a bit better. Maintenance should never be overlooked and when your HVAC technician gives you some advice, try to think about it with an open mind instead of assuming that he is trying to fleece you of a few more dollars. When it comes to your HVAC unit, the technician is the best person to consult. You will only enrich with their knowledge and experience.
The world is reeling under the impact of the disease COVID-19 caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. In such times there is a big ongoing debate on the use of HVAC systems in homes. The main reason for the debate is the fact that the said virus can survive for days in a cooler environment. So, to prevent its spread further, creating an environment that is not conducive to its survival is the most viable option. Well, there are two faces to this double edge sword, and we aim to clarify why the HVAC contractors can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 without any severe impact on your comfort at home.
How COVID-19 Spreads?
Let’s begin with the basics. First, it is important to know how the SARS-CoV-2 virus actually spreads. When sick people (who already have COVID-19) cough or sneeze, they release tiny droplets of water into the air. Mostly, these droplets are invisible to the naked human eye. Attached to these droplets is the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The lighter infected droplets linger in the air while the heavier ones settle on different surfaces where they can survive anywhere between a few hours to a couple of days. A healthy person touches an infected surface and rubs his face (eyes, nose, and mouth) or inhales the air in which the infected droplets float and become ill. This is how the disease spreads.
How Can HVAC Contractors Help Reduce The Spread Of COVID-19?
HVAC contractors are experts in helping you maintain the indoor air quality of your home. They are well versed in ways that will reduce the potential for airborne transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in your house. Here are some of the things that an HVA contractor will recommend in these turbulent times.
1. Replacing The Air Filters Regularly – The HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filters that are used nowadays can trap the bigger particles of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Though it may not essentially trap all of it primarily because the said virus is as small as 0.3 microns in size. The efficiency of the HEPA air filters is 99%, but not 100%. Nonetheless, it will still reduce the coronavirus circulating in the indoor air and make your home a safer place to socially distance yourself and self-quarantine.
2. Cleaning And disinfecting Exposed Surfaces – An important advice that an HVAC contractor will give is to regularly clean and disinfect all exposed surfaces in your home. This is an added precaution, for if any virus has settled on a surface, it will be killed on cleaning and disinfecting. It includes all exposed surfaces of the HVAC as well and not just those that are there for the aesthetic appeal. You don’t have to be scared of touching things in your home. Instead, embrace frequent cleaning, it will not only make your home squeaky clean but also get rid of the illness-causing
3. Using UV Germicidal Lights – You can still enjoy cool indoors without worrying about the coronavirus by installing Ultra Violet Germicidal lights in your HVAC. These are of two types – Coil Sterilization and Air sterilization UV Lights. The coil sterilization lights disinfect the coils as well as any air that passes over it. Similarly, air sterilization UV lights disinfect all the air that goes back into the unit and is thus placed inside the return air vents. The purpose of both these UV germicidal lights is to eliminate all bacteria and viruses (including coronavirus) along with various other contaminants. An HVAC contractor can best advise you on the type that will suit your home the best.
4. Using Air Purifiers – Air purifiers are yet another way of purifying the indoor air. There are standalone air purifiers that can be used for each room, and there are air purifiers that can be installed in conjunction with your central heating and cooling system. These air purifiers have HEPA air filters that help trap numerous pollutants along with bacteria and viruses. Again the accuracy of the HEPA filters is just 99%, but it is always better to have some sort of protection rather than none. Working in tandem with the air filters of your HVAC system, the air purifier can drastically reduce the number of pathogens present in the indoor air.
HVAC A Prevention Strategy
Using the HVAC unit at home, in combination with any of the above-mentioned indoor air quality enhancers, makes for a very effective illness prevention strategy. However, the key is to make sure that your unit is well maintained, and the piece of equipment that you use to improve the air quality suits your home. To choose which option works best for you, consider asking an HVAC technician for their feedback. With years of experience and knowledge under their belt, they can guide you in the right direction.
Reducing The Spread Of COVID-19
Installing indoor air quality enhancers in your home will not suffice in stopping the spread of COVID-19 on its own. You still need to practice:
1. Social distancing.
3. Frequently washing hands for at least 20 seconds with soap.
4. Taking a bath and changing clothes every time you go outside for work or buying daily essentials.
Following these precautions and letting your HVAC system do its job will make your self-quarantine period more successful and less stressful.
Most homes in America are built with the HVAC system being an integral part of comfort in-home, in mind. Therefore, not much thought is given to adequate ventilation as it is self-understood that the central heating and cooling unit will take care of things. In such homes, one cannot live without running the AC to counter the effects of hot summers.
Not running the AC this summer is not a very feasible option. It is just a way to torture yourself. However, protection against the novel coronavirus is also essential. Together with the help of your HVAC technician, you can successfully overcome both these problems.
Aztil Air Conditioning will be glad to help you if you live in West Palm Beach, Florida, and wish to discuss the best indoor air purification option further. Our elite team of technicians is highly skilled and knowledgeable. We also adhere to the strictest safety standards to keep you and your family safe. Call us at +1-888-729-8452. We are available 24/7.
The quality of air that you breathe while inside the house has become a thing of grave concern. Homeowners are now constantly on the lookout for options that would work the best with their current heating and cooling system. In the past, indoor air quality was something that people seldom ever thought about. However, things are now changing, and the masses are becoming more conscious about cultivating a conducive and healthy environment in the home, and that includes indoor air quality.
Why Is Indoor Air Quality Important?
The quality of air in a closed space like a home, office, school, or any other building is significant for a number of reasons. Even the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers them important.
1. On average, around 90% of Americans spend their time indoors. In these places, the concentration of the pollutants is 2 to 5 times greater than the outdoors.
2. People who have allergies, small children, and the elderly spend an even larger amount of time inside.
3. In the last decade, the concentration of pollutants has increased manifold indoors. It is due to the use of energy-efficient building construction, which does not allow for adequate mechanical ventilation, thereby preventing appropriate air exchange. Additionally, there has been a considerable increase in the use of personal care products, household cleaning agents, synthetic building materials, and such.
What Are UV Lights?
UV lights are also known as Germicidal Ultra Violet lights, and these are used for sanitization purposes. These kill germs, bacteria, viruses, mold spores, and other biological contaminants. This purifies the indoor air and makes it healthier to breathe.
The reason why UV lights are suggested for improving indoor air quality is mainly that it can be paired with your HVAC unit. However, if your unit is old, it may not be possible, so it is best to check with your local HVAC contractor and get the go-ahead first.
Benefit OF UV Lights
The prime benefit of UV lights is that they are very effective in eliminating contaminants. They are so efficient that hospitals and nursing homes have been using them for sterilizing equipment for a very long time.
Eliminating the contaminants present in the air has lots of health benefits. The most obvious change will be felt by those who have asthma and suffer from seasonal allergies. Once you start using UV lights, you will also notice that the tendency of your family to fall ill is far less than those families who don’t use germicidal lamps. It is all because the indoor air quality of your home is far superior to theirs.
A lesser-known fact about UV lights is that they help get rid of odors present in the house. These odors tend to be irritating and distracting, so getting rid of them would be a godsend.
Types Of UV Lights
There are two basic types of UV lights, namely
1. Coil Sanitizing UV Lights – The coils are an ideal place for the growth of bacteria and mold. The coils trap moisture from the passing air to dehumidify it, and in turn, itself becomes moist due to condensation. The air passing over the coils leaves behind contaminants over it, which breed and increase colonies or release spores that are again picked by passing air and circulated throughout the home. The coil sanitizing UV lights are placed where they can shine on the coil surface without any obstructions and disinfect it.
2. Air Sanitizing UV Lights – The air sanitizing UV lights are installed in the return air ducts. The aim is to kill the contaminants before they can find a place to settle over the coils or become a part of the air going back into the home. The clean air dilutes the concentration of the polluted air indoors and makes it better and healthier to breathe.
Cost-Effectiveness Of UV Lights
Let us have a peek at the cost-effectiveness of UV lights. Coil sanitizing lights cost between $60 to $280 while air sanitizing UV lights cost between $80 to $400. But that is just the core cost of the light. You need to shell out more for the installation, which will include the labor cost and take into consideration things like the type of your HVAC unit and the complexity of work. Hence, the actual cost of installation may vary between $600 to $1,800.
UV lights are low maintenance, and running them non-stop will cost you between $15 to $30 annually. No matter the total cost, the benefit it renders in terms of improving the indoor air quality is priceless.
Can I Install UV Lights
Some UV lights have to be hard-wired, and all of them have to be placed precisely. Also, the ductwork needs to be sealed after the installation, which you may not be able to accomplish. For these very reasons, the indoor air quality experts at Aztil Air Conditioning don’t recommend installing the UV lights for your heating and cooling system as a DIY project. In your bid to save some dollars, you may inadvertently land up making a costly mistake.
Life Expectancy Of UV Bulbs.
Most UV bulbs have a life expectancy of one year, though some may stretch for a year and a half to two. It is best that you consult your HVAC contractor on when your UV germicidal bulb may need to be replaced. Since they work with these appliances day in and day out, the technicians can give you the best time frame, though it is up to you to change the bulbs or get them changed around the recommended time.
If you have never thought about the indoor air quality in your home till now, its time to take stock. Times are changing, and diseases and illnesses are evolving, but having good indoor air quality will limit your exposure to them.
Residents of West Palm Beach, Florida, can contact the air quality experts at Aztil AC to discuss the indoor air quality solutions further. To book an appointment call at +1-888-729-8452.
Air filters happen to be the most used part of an HVAC system. Unfortunately, they are also the most neglected. Time and again, the homeowners are advised to change their air filters at regular intervals, and yet, that does not always happen.
It’s just an air filter, so just chill it, dude!
If you, too, think the same, this article is going to be quite an eye-opener. To begin with, it’s not just an air filter. It happens to be an integral part of the heating and cooling system that one cannot possibly do without.
The purpose of an air filter is…
…to trap or capture the pollutants or contaminants floating about in the air. The cleaner the air filters, the better the indoor air quality and vice-versa. They ensure that the air inside your home is cleaner and also keeps the inside of your HVAC system free of build-ups. So in effect, it keeps the central heating and cooling unit working without any added stress.
Here’s why changing the air filter is necessary
The root cause of most problems that crop up in an HVAC unit is the dirty air filter. As soon as you replace it with a cleaner one, there will be a marked improvement in its performance. However, you don’t have to take our word for it. Instead, look at the facts and let them speak for themselves.
1. It Improves Indoor Air Quality – The air filters have a rating known as the MERV rating. It is the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. The higher the rating, the smaller the contaminants it can capture. The prime objective of the air filter is to prevent dust and other impurities from finding their way inside your house. Surprisingly, in addition to dust and debris, it can also catch dander, mold spores, bacteria, and viruses. All of these are either allergens or illness-causing micro-organisms that are detrimental to our health. Their presence in the indoor air not only deteriorates its quality but also makes the residents fall ill frequently. Clean air filters trap all of these and more and keep the indoor air that you breathe healthy and hygienic.
2. It Prevents Your HVAC From Working Under Stress
– Dust and dirt particles present in the air tend to settle over fans, motors, and other moving components. When that happens, the system has to work harder to perform the same amount of cooling as before. As a result, it often heats up and trips the circuit breaker or blows a fuse. If you are really unlucky, it may cause damage to one or more components and, in extreme cases, may even run your unit to the ground. Working under stress is not good for any equipment, and the same stands true for your HVAC. Clean equipment ensures the long life of the unit. But when the dust starts accumulating inside it due to dirty air filters, it restricts the free flow of air over the heat exchanger, ultimately leading to equipment failure.
3. It Improves The Efficiency Of Your HVAC
– Clean air filters mean free and unrestricted flow of air. When there are no obstructions in the movement of air, your system works at optimum efficiency. Optimum efficiency means proper cooling, lower energy bills, and maximum comfort. Dirty air filters prevent your unit from working efficiently. Inadequate airflow and dirt inside the unit make it work harder and consume more power, thereby reducing its efficiency. Continuously running the unit in such adverse conditions can lead to its breakdown and costly repairs or replacement. In comparison, changing the air filters frequently is an inexpensive and effective option.
Other Problems Created By Dirty Air Filters
There are several other problems that result from dirty air filters. Some of them are:
1. Mold Growth – Dirty air filters are often the reason for mold growth inside the house. The clogged filters trap the moisture from the air and provide a thriving ground for the growth of both bacteria and mold. If they grow on the wrong side of the air filter, they will make the indoor air more contaminated and unhealthy.
2. Bad Odors – Clogged air filters lead to bad odors in the house. It can be as offensive as the smell of rotten eggs and dirty socks or mild as wet clothes. In any case, none of these smells is pleasant and wanted in the house. These odors are, in fact, a sign of budding trouble for your health.
3. Freezing Of Coils – In the absence of free flow of air over the coils, they tend to freeze. Sometimes the freezing is so severe that you may be able to see ice formation on your unit. Also, when this ice melts, it may create water puddles inside the house, damaging your walls and woodwork.
So, how often should the air filters be changed?
Change your air filters at least once every quarter. Though changing them every month is preferable. Do not at any time exceed the three months period as that can be detrimental to the efficiency and longevity of your HVAC.
Choosing The Right Air Filter
Purchasing the highest MERV rating air filter will not serve any purpose if it is not compatible with your heating and cooling system. You can only replace the air filter with the company recommended option. Ideally, check your current air filter specifications and replace it with a new one of the same specification. This will ensure that there are no compatibility issues.
Now that you know how important it is to change the dirty air filters, you will hopefully stick to a strict regimen in following it. At the end of the day, the cost of replacing the air filters is far less than that of bearing costly repairs or financing a new heating and cooling system.
Clean air filters guarantee unit efficiency, health and comfort of the residents, and long life of your HVAC.
Since the spread of COVID-19 disease, everybody has become quite concerned about the indoor air quality in their homes. With the USA becoming an epicenter, the unrest amongst the people is at peak. But the good news is that they are all now thinking of ways to improve the indoor air quality. Earlier it was something that was taken for granted.
Today, every little bit that we do will go a long way in slowing down the impact of the Coronavirus. Every small step helps. One important measure in that respect is staying indoors. So we need to ensure that our indoor space is safe, clean, protected, and comfortable. Indoor air quality solutions are your safety net that will minimize the effect of viruses and other biological contaminants in your home.
Indoor Air Quality Solutions For Your Safety
A very significant way in which you can save yourself as well as your family from COVID-19 is by staying under self-quarantine in your home. At most, you cross the perimeter of your property to buy the essentials. This practice will limit your exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes the disease COVID-19. Your quarantine is successful only if the indoor air quality is good. It is a well-known fact, and the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) also agrees with it that the indoor air is more polluted than the outdoor air. It is almost two to five times more polluted. In essence, it means you are unknowingly breathing in bacteria, viruses, pollen, dust, mold, smoke, and other contaminants.
Continuous and long-term exposure to these biological contaminants will negatively impact the health of those individuals whose immune system is compromised, especially the aged and the children. Even a healthy person can fall ill due to the constant inhaling of polluted indoor air. Employing indoor air quality solutions will limit and reduce your exposure to these harmful elements.
Health Impact Due To Biological Contaminants
Biological contaminants are those micro-organisms that contaminate our food, water, and environment. These include bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, etc. Some of them cause allergies like asthma, allergic rhinitis, and hypersensitivity pneumonitis, while others can cause a range of illnesses like flu, measles, and chicken-pox, to name a few.
The primary symptoms of health problems caused because of biological contaminants are:
3. Watery eyes
4. Difficulty in breathing
8. Body ache
9. Digestive problems
Usually, these symptoms appear only after prolonged exposure to the said contaminants. When the indoor air quality is compromised, the exposure to the biological contaminants increases. And that is precisely why the indoor air quality experts at Aztil Air Conditioning strongly advise the application of appropriate indoor air quality solutions.
Ways To Improve The Indoor Air Quality
The indoor air quality professionals at Aztil Air Conditioning has figured out some ways for you to improve the air quality of your home.
1. A hot and humid environment provides the best breeding ground for most contaminants and their resultant illnesses. Consequently, it is necessary to keep humidity in control inside your house. In places with high humidity installing a dehumidifier in conjunction with the HVAC system will work wonders in improving the indoor air quality. Furthermore, ventilate your home from time to time by opening windows and switching on the fan to circulate fresh air throughout.
2. The filters of your HVAC system are very crucial in improving the indoor air quality. They trap the impurities and pollutants floating in the air and prevent them from reentering the circulating air. Allowing the filters to become clogged with dirt and dust reduces their effectiveness in trapping the unwanted elements in the air. Therefore, regularly change your air filters.
3. Installing UV germicidal lights is the recent rage. UV lights are known to kill bacteria and viruses. Hospitals, salons, and other places where equipment needs to be sanitized properly use them the most. Installing them with your central heating and cooling equipment will kill not only bacteria and mold but also viruses. It will make the air inside your home healthy and safe to breathe.
4. You can even install an air purifier with your HVAC unit. If that is too costly for your pocket, think about purchasing a stand-alone air purifier. You can buy just one for the room in which your family spends the most time, or you could buy one for each room. That choice is entirely yours. The air purifier traps the biological contaminants that are present in the air when it passes through the unit. It is extremely effective in improving the air quality of the home or room, as the case may be.
5. Installing exhaust fans that vent to the outside, in kitchen and bathrooms will help eliminate moisture build-up. A secondary benefit of exhaust fans is that they also bring down the level of organic pollutants, which usually vaporize from hot water.
Main Causes Of Indoor Air Problems
The things actually deteriorating the indoor air quality are everyday items that we don’t pay much attention to. Here are a few of them to give you a fair idea:
1. Cigarette smoke.
2. Aerosol sprays.
3. Paint fumes.
4. Dust due to remodeling or construction.
5. Excess moisture.
6. Household cleaning agents.
7. Rugs and upholstery that have not been cleaned for a very long time.
Very fine wood shavings floating in the air as a result of some recent woodwork.
Indoor Air Quality Solutions For A Safe Haven
To make your home a safer breathing space, employing the right air quality solution is necessary. Today, when the disease COVID-19 is spreading like wildfire and people have to stay indoors, these solutions become all the more important. They almost become your second line of defense, the first being social-distancing, washing hands frequently, and self-quarantining.
Aztil AC provides indoor air quality solutions to the residents of West Palm Beach, Florida. We understand that the times are uncertain, but even then, we have taken a pledge to help you keep your family safe. Your safety comes first and foremost. Our technicians adhere to all the precautions to ensure that your safety does not get compromised. If you have any queries or concerns, reach out to us at +1-888-729-8452.
Most homes have several ventilation systems. Does that come as a surprise? Don’t be. In homes, there is usually a central heating and cooling system, so there is a ventilation system for that. Another ventilation system is for the electric chimney in the kitchen and yet another for the laundry dryer. These are just the most common ones. There may be others, but let’s not get into them now. The two most used ventilation systems in every home are the ones for the AC and drying the laundry. Our emphasis today will be on these two systems so that you can better handle their maintenance and cleaning.
A clothes dryer dries wet clothes by tumbling them inside a drum through which heated air passes. The hot air picks the moisture from the wet clothes and sends it out of the dryer using a fan. Behind every dryer is a vent, approximately 4 inches in size that expels the moisture-laden air outside. The air traverses from the clothes dryer to the outside of the house via a tube. This tube is connected at one end to the dryer and at the other end to a hole that is cut in the sidewall leading to the exterior.
Air Duct Vents
The central heating and cooling systems require an extensive network of ventilation to cool and warm each and every room of the house. This is possible only through intricate ductwork. The air ducts pass the treated air into every room for maximum comfort. However, they tend to become dirty and sometimes even clogged if they are not cleaned. Usually, its dust, dirt, dander, house pests and critters which cause maximum damage to them.
Importance Of Dryer Vent Cleaning And Air Duct Cleaning
Both dryer vent cleaning and air duct cleaning are important. Some homeowners don’t give much heed to either and others to just the air duct cleaning. Either way, both approaches are wrong as the one that is not cleaned can later become a hazard.
1. Importance Of Dryer Vent Cleaning – It is mostly the lint from the clothes that tends to block the dryer vent. As a result, the hot moisture-laden air is unable to find its way outside and remains trapped inside. Additionally, the clothes also don’t dry properly and remain slightly moist. In extreme cases, this blockage can become a fire hazard. Therefore, it is necessary to clean the dryer vent along with the lint trap for best results.
2. Importance Of Air Duct Cleaning – Blockages in the air duct reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system. Your house is unable to reach a comfortable temperature due to the restrictions in the airflow. Not only that, but it also puts the unit under a lot of strain. As a result, it consumes more power, breaks down often, and slowly and steadily runs the system to the ground. If you want to prevent these things from happening, air duct cleaning is the only answer.
Dryer Vent Cleaning And Air Duct Cleaning – How Does It Happen?
Knowing what the cleaning process involves is always a good option as it prepares you in advance about what to expect. So here is what goes into dryer vent cleaning and air duct cleaning.
1. Dryer Vent Cleaning – Dryer duct cleaning begins at the base where the duct is connected to the dryer. From there, it covers the entire distance of the duct until the other end, which is the exterior, is reached. In the process, all trapped debris, including any inflammable lint, is removed from the inside of the duct. This job can take anywhere between half an hour to one hour.
2. Air Duct Cleaning – Air duct cleaning is a more extensive process as it covers each and every duct in every single room. Herein, all the ducts, vents, and any other component of the ventilation system are thoroughly cleaned using a special truck-mounted and high powered vacuum cleaner. Ideally, a thorough job takes a couple of hours though it may take even longer if you have a big house.
How Often Should Dryer Vent Cleaning And Air Duct Cleaning Be Done?
There is no scientifically proven set timeframe in which one needs to undertake dryer vent cleaning and air duct cleaning. However, here is what the experts still suggest:
1. Dryer Vent Cleaning – Every homeowner should see to the dryer vent cleaning at least once to twice a year. Getting it done every 6 months is the best option, but if for some reason you can’t, cleaning it once a year is strongly advised.
2. Air Duct Cleaning – Recommendation from experts, say that air duct cleaning should be done at least once in 5 years. Although, if you reside in s place where there is a lot of dust in the air or if you are allergic to pollens and such, you can do it more often.
Use Cleaning Professionals
Dryer vent cleaning and air duct cleaning should always be done by professionals. We stress on using professionals as they do a thorough job, using proper equipment and adhering to all safety standards. As homeowners, one can at best do a superficial cleaning but not an extensive one, as is really required. Finding reliable professionals is not very difficult. You can always ask your relatives, friends, and neighbors for a recommendation. Not only that, but you can also search for a local contractor online who has a good reputation. However, we strongly suggest that you check and verify their credentials.
Residents of West Palm Beach, Florida, can contact the professionals at Aztil AC for air duct cleaning. We provide 24/7 emergency services, so anytime is a good time. You can reach out to us on +1-888-729-8452. Our team of technicians is the best and will leave you a satisfied customer. We are looking forward to helping you make your home a more comfortable place.
The pandemic COVID-19 caused by the coronavirus has unsettled the entire world. The ground reality is that until a vaccine for the same comes out and everybody gets inoculated, we have to live the life of social distancing and maintaining unerringly impeccable self-hygiene. But work will continue, and people will still have to go out to make purchases. At such times will using air purifiers at home help get rid of the coronavirus in the circulating air? Today, we shall try and answer the question to your satisfaction. But, before we proceed with a “Yes” or a “No”, let’s look at some basic facts which will validate our answer.
How Big Is The Coronavirus?
Using electron microscopes, scientists have been able to successfully measure the size of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The coronavirus particles are spherical in shape. In microbiology, they are known as “Virions” which is actually the complete, infective form of a virus outside a host cell, with a core of RNA and a capsid. The diameter of these spheres is approximately 0.125 microns or 125 nm. The smallest of these measures around 0.06 microns, while the bigger ones around 0.14 microns.
Filters Used In Air Purifiers
A HEPA filter is fitted in the modern-day air purifiers to capture contaminants. HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air filter, and these have an efficiency of 99.97% in trapping particles right down to submicron size.
There are two facts about the HEPA filters that you need to know.
1. The efficiency of 99.97% in the HEPA filter is attributed to the most penetrating size of the particle, which is 0.3 micron.
2. The HEPA filters don’t just capture particles up to 0.3 microns, but even smaller ones as well. So, ideally, they can trap infinitesimally small matter. However, in all that, you cannot forget the fact that it is only 99.97% efficient and not 100%. Needless to say, some matter does escape, and so there is scope for improvement.
Can Air Purifiers Trap Coronavirus?
To some degree, an air purifier that is fitted with a HEPA filter can trap a percentage of the airborne coronavirus. Once the virus is captured, it is unable to multiply and remain infectious for an extended period of time. Nonetheless, there is no air purifier built till now that can fully protect you from a virus.
An air purifier is a passive way of enhancing your breathing space at home or in office, wherever it is installed. The good thing is that it does not involve any big changes in your normal everyday life. What it essentially does is provide extra backing or support to your immune system to fight off any virus.
HEPA Air Purifiers And Coronavirus
As stated above, HEPA air purifiers can remove 99.97% of the 0.3 micron-sized particles. Even then, some viruses bypass the filter. A portion of the COVID-19 and other flu viruses can be removed by a HEPA air purifier. The extent to which this removal is successful is still a matter of debate. Studies and proxy tests are being conducted as we speak to test its efficacy. A sure shot answer can only be given once the results of these tests are published.
Spread Of Coronavirus
According to the CDC or the Center for Disease Control, COVID-19 spreads from one person to another through close contact. When an infected person sneezes or coughs, they release the virus particles attached to extremely small droplets of water. These infectious droplets float in the air and cause airborne transmission.
The bigger infected droplets settle on surfaces. A few or more people may touch these surfaces and pick up the virus. When they rub their hands on their faces, the virus finds its way inside the next human body and multiplies.
Air Purifiers And Coronavirus: How Air Purifiers Prevent The Spread Of coronavirus?
More and more health experts are advising people to stay at home. An air purifier that works as intended can play a major role in significantly minimizing the airborne transmission of the coronavirus. The air inside the room will pass through the air purifier multiple times a day. It increases the likelihood of capturing a major portion of the floating coronavirus particles. Once they get trapped, they will not survive too long and save your family from the deadly COVID-19.
If a family member is sick with COVID-19, running an air purifier in the room they occupy and are quarantined in will go a long way in protecting the other members of the family or the caregivers. The same stands true for healthcare workers who quarantine themselves once they are back home.
Air Purifiers Are Not First Line Of Defence Against Coronavirus
By no means are the air purifiers the first line of defense against the coronavirus. They can only ensure the quality of air inside a room when running continuously. Even then, a small portion of the virus may still escape being caught by the HEPA filters. So depending solely on the air purifiers is not a good idea.
Most homes these days have central heating and cooling, and so they are well insulated. So well indeed that ventilating these homes properly by opening windows is not an option. Even if it were, it would still be lacking. Under these circumstances, one can use an air purifier in conjunction with their HVAC unit or use standalone air purifiers in individual rooms. Those who can ventilate their homes should open their doors and windows. It would allow the fresh air from outside to come in and dilute the concentration of the virus present in the air inside the home.
Air Purifiers And Coronavirus – Concluding Thoughts
Having some sort of defense against the coronavirus is better than having none, and air purifiers are just that – an added protection. Depending solely on them to save yourself from the dreaded COVID-19 is foolhardy. The best you can do is practice social distancing, stay at home until absolutely necessary to go out, refrain from touching your face, wash hands every hour with soap or an alcohol-based sanitizer. These practices, together with using an air purifier, will help keep you and your family safe.
The pandemic COVID-19 is spreading like wildfire and affecting the entire world. This disease, caused by Coronavirus, has all the nations scrambling and everybody concerned. At such times, Aztil Air Conditioning makes the health and safety of your family, an unquestionable top priority. We sell, service, and maintain energy-efficient and environment-friendly equipment that can help improve the indoor air quality of your home.
SARS-CoV-2 is the name of the Coronavirus that causes the disease COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019). SARS is the acronym for Severe Acute `Respiratory Syndrome, which was first identified in the year 2003.
The symptoms of COVID-19 resemble those of the common flu. However, it is indeed a much more severe condition. It is primarily because most people have by now developed immunity to the common flu strains, but COVID-19 is a new virus, and hence, people are yet not immune to it.
The common symptoms of COVID-19 include:
2. Body ache.
5. Upset stomach.
6. Difficulty in breathing (in severe cases).
Impact Of Indoor Air Quality On Your Health
We don’t generally pay much heed to the indoor air quality. As long as the home is comfortable, everything is fine and dandy. But that does not mean we are breathing in clean and healthy air. It just means that our health is robust enough to tide us over the ailments that poor indoor air quality can induce. However, everybody is not that lucky, especially the infants and the aged. In both these age groups, the immunity is quite low.
You can judge the significance of the indoor air quality from the mere fact that the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) ranks it as one of the top five environmental risks to human health. The situation becomes even direr, considering that people spend the vast majority of their time indoors, in homes or offices, sometimes shopping in malls and eating in restaurants – all of these being closed spaces.
The need of the hour is an HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air-Conditioning) system that is able to maintain the flow of fresh air indoors so that the air quality does not deteriorate.
How A Good HVAC Unit Can Help You Stay Healthy
Restoring appropriate humidity levels, removing stale air, and killing the bacteria floating in the air are just some of the things that a good indoor air quality equipment can achieve. The good news is that it is integrated with your HVAC equipment and the standing ductwork of your home. The job of integration is critical, and so it should be carried out by a qualified and insured professional only. The team at Aztil AC fulfills both these requirements.
Here are some indoor air quality solutions that you may wish to acquire for your home:
1. Ultraviolet antibacterial lamps or the UV lamps that have the capability to eliminate biological contaminants like viruses, bacteria, mold spores, and such.
2. Whole house In-Duct air purifiers that can purge your home of pollen, dust, and dander.
3. Whole-house air filtration units that can capture contaminants like viruses, bacteria, dust, and pollen.
4. Whole-house humidification and dehumidification systems that can restore the humidity levels in your home to a healthier range.
5. ERVs or the Energy Recovery Ventilators that drain the stale air indoors and bring in the much-needed fresh and treated air from the outdoors.
Are Indoor Air Quality HVAC Equipments Used Elsewhere?
Most medical institutions, like hospitals and medical colleges, along with nursing homes and critical-care homes, use indoor air quality equipment. Even industrial facilities and large offices make use of them. Their popularity itself is an indication of their effectiveness and efficiency. They are intended to keep the occupants inside any building, home, or office, healthy and comfortable.
Not using such equipment in places where many people work or stay can prove to be detrimental to their health. If one person suffers from an ailment, the poor air quality will make others also fall ill by transporting the bacteria or virus from one place to another through the circulating air. The indoor air quality HVAC equipment traps these biological contaminants and limits the spreading of disease.
Things You Can Do To Minimize The Chances Of Infection
If you think that the HVAC equipment that improves the indoor air quality will prevent you from falling ill, you are running o the wrong track. It will only reduce the chances of you falling ill, and that is all. But all is not lost. There is a lot you can do to minimize your chances of falling prey to COVID-19.
Though the Coronavirus does not survive beyond a couple of hours on most surfaces, it can still survive for many days on door handles and such. Taking care of your personal hygiene will play a pivotal role in keeping you safe from it. The SARS-CoV-2 virus spreads through respiratory outlets, and so the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends the following practices:
1. Wash your hands with soap and water, scrubbing them for at least 20 seconds, frequently.
2. Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth with dirty hands. If you want to cough or sneeze, suddenly do it in the “V” of your elbow.
3. Wipe clean the door handles and light switches if they are used frequently.
4. Maintain a safe distance of at least 3 feet from everyone, even more, if anyone is coughing and sneezing. This is what social distancing is all about. You do not enter anybody’s personal space anymore.
5. If you are not feeling well, stay home, and self-quarantine. Ask your family members also to stay away until you are completely well.
The sad reality of life is that there is nothing that can guarantee you complete safety from illness of any kind. Let us not get disheartened for the modern-day HVAC equipment go a long way in minimizing your exposure to the illness-causing bacteria and viruses. If you couple it with good hygiene practices, you have a fairly good shot at deceiving most illnesses.
At Aztil AC, we are determined to educate you about health and safety measures that you can employ with your HVAC equipment to make your home a healthy home.
The battle to take care of the environment is no more being fought at an individual level. Even big brands and government organizations have joined hands to make big changes. One such change that is bound to affect many people is the ban on R-22 refrigerant, which is used in the cooling systems.
What Is R-22?
Also known as “Freon”, R-22 is the most commonly used coolant or refrigerant in the air conditioners. It is a hydrochlorofluorocarbon or HCFC. It is both non-toxic and non-inflammable and, as a result, considered safe for domestic and industrial use.
Why The Ban On R-22 (Freon)?
Though considered safe for domestic and industrial use, R-22 is still being phased out. The reason is that it has a high ozone depletion potential. It is a greenhouse gas that is 1810 times powerful than carbon dioxide. At a time when everybody is trying to safeguard the environment, continuing to use R-22 can set back their efforts.
EPA Phase-Out Plan For R-22 (Freon)
The Environment Protection Agency of the US has scheduled a fixed phase-out plan for R-22. Here is a glimpse at it:
1. Jan 2010 – Partial ban on the production and use of R-22 except for servicing the pieces of equipment that still use it.
2. Jan 2015 – Complete ban on the production and use of R-22. Only stockpiled Freon will be used for servicing of existing equipment.
3. Jan 2020 – Only recycled R-22 will be used for continuing servicing of existing equipment.
4. Jan 2030 – Complete ban on the production, import, and use of HCFCs.
What Does The Ban On Making And Importing R-22 (Freon) Mean To A Homeowner?
As of January 2020, only recycled R-22 can be used for servicing those units that still run on it. This, however, does not mean that owning an AC that runs on R-22 will become illegal. You can still run it without any complications. Now that you know it’s not a panic situation, let’s see how it will actually affect you.
Only a certified technician will be able to buy recycled R-22 (freon). The bigger problem is that reclaiming R-22 and recycling will make it a very expensive commodity due to its limited availability. So, now you will have to shell out a far larger amount to top up the refrigerant to the same level as before. As the supply decreases, the prices are bound to shoot even further.
At the end of the day, it will become more a question of how long the homeowner is willing to pay that high a cost. The day it becomes too high to handle is the day you would want to buy a new AC unit.
What Is R-22 Being Replaced With?
R-22 (Freon) is being replaced with R-410a. As mentioned above, it is an HCF, so it does not harm the ozone layer. In air conditioning equipment, it is the present, compliant standard coolant or refrigerant.
How Can I Know Whether My AC Uses R-22?
If you are not aware of the refrigerant used by your AC, don’t worry. You can easily find out this information. All you need to do is go out to where your compressor unit or the outdoor unit is installed and check the label on it. Printed on the label will be the information about the refrigerant used by your air conditioner.
Who Should Worry About The Ban on R-22 (Freon)?
At the very outset, nobody needs to worry about the ban on R-22 (Freon).
If your AC is old and uses R-22, all you need to do is see to its proper annual maintenance so that it continues to run without any issues. In case, it develops a refrigerant leak, call your local HVAC contractor to seal the leak and top the refrigerant with recycled one. Hopefully, another leak should not occur. If it does, you have three options.
1. One, get the leak sealed, and the refrigerant topped once more.
2. Two, get your old AC retro-fitted to use another approved refrigerant, although this step may render the manufacturer warranty void.
3. Three, think about buying a new AC that will give more energy efficiency.
If your AC is new or manufactured after 2010, most likely, you have nothing to worry about. After the year 2010, the AC manufacturers started using HFCs or hydrofluorocarbons, which are a non-ozone depleting class of refrigerants. An example of it is the R-410a.
Things To Think About Before Making A Final Decision
Now that you know, you can take a breather, its time to probably think through your options carefully. Here are a couple of aspects that you need to pay attention to:
1. Cost Of Repairs And Refrigerant Top Up – An old unit is expensive to maintain and keep up with repairs. It is mainly due to the unavailability of spares. Add to that the skyrocketing cost of R-22 and the overall maintenance of the machinery may become just too expensive for your pocket.
2. Energy Efficiency – Newer models of AC, are far more energy-efficient as compared to the older ones. Where old systems don’t give you much in terms of power savings, you will be surprised by the capabilities and features of the new models.
3. Life Left Of Your Unit – If your AC is older than 10 years, it is probably on the last leg of its life. Extending its life a few months at a time will only add to your expenses. Buying a new AC is a better option under the circumstances.
Making environment-friendly choices is the call of the day. When you know that your system uses a refrigerant that is banned, it is best to proactively look for better options. You may not be able to buy a new AC immediately, but it will give you a chance to research your options and plan your finances for the day when you can.
Programmable thermostats are definitely a boon that has made life easy. But close on its feet is also the fact that many people are not aware of the ideal temperature settings that would get the maximum savings. As such, even with a thermostat that is guaranteed for optimum performance, one is unable to make the most of it. The problem is not being able to program it correctly; rather, it is more about using incorrect temperature settings. Below is a guide that will help you figure out the best temperature setting that you should be using on the thermostat.
Ideal Temperature Setting During Summers
During summers, the human body is most comfortable when the indoor temperatures hover near 78 degrees Fahrenheit or 26 degrees Centigrade. This setting is the best only when you are inside the house during waking hours. It will help you stay cool and also avoid unusually high power bills. If you still feel uncomfortable, it is probably due to humidity. So what you need in that case is a good dehumidifier.
When you are sleeping, you can program the thermostat a few degrees higher as it is a good practice to save energy. Following this practice for intervals of 8 hours will drastically scale back the cost of cooling your home. The key is to remember that you don’t go overboard on fixing high temperatures, as that will make your AC work harder when the interval ends.
Ideal Temperature Setting During Winters
During winters, one wants to stay nice, warm, and cozy without piling on layer after layer of clothing. When awake, the furnace or the heat pump will give you maximum comfort inside the house at around 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Lowering the temperature a couple of degrees at night, while you sleep, will help bring down the electricity bills. Following this practice for 8-hour intervals will maximize your savings. In case you live in an area where the winters are mild and not severe, you can also get away without using your heating equipment at all. All you need then is just an additional layer of clothing.
Ideal Temperature Setting When You Are Away
If you are planning to go out for an extended period of time, like a weekend or a long holiday, you need to adjust your thermostat. It is important to do so, so that, it does not continue to heat or cool the home as if everyone was inside. That would be sheer wastage of electricity. Programmable thermostats have a hold or vacation mode, which allows the homeowners to fix a constant temperature. Usually, in summers, this temperature would be several degrees higher than what you would normally keep. In winters, the situation would reverse, and it would be several degrees lower than expected.
Why Use The Vacation Or Hold Mode When Away From Home?
Shutting down your heating and cooling system completely when away from home for a couple of days or more is not advisable. It is primarily because turning off the system can result in high humidity and consequently, mold growth. It happens because the air is unable to circulate when you shut down your unit. If you don’t want to come back to a home that not only smells bad but whose indoor air quality has also gone for a toss, remember to use the vacation mode on the thermostat.
Yet another reason for not shutting down your heating and cooling system is that even when you are away, it will make the home look lived in. Consequently, it will act as a deterrent to miscreants planning some illegal activity.
Always Keep An Eye On Humidity
Most of us don’t take into account the effects of humidity on the temperature. How comfortable we feel inside the home does not solely depend on the temperature. Humidity plays an equally big part in seeing to it. In summers, The humidity is naturally high. What you need at this time is to maintain the humidity at around 30% to 50% through dehumidification. Even EPA recommends the same. It will not make you feel clammy, hot, and bothered when indoors.
Similarly, in winters, the humidity is naturally low, so much so that the air feels naturally dry. The need of the hour is maintaining humidity levels around 30% to 40% through humidification of the home.
Maintaining the appropriate humidity level inside the home will go a long way in contributing to the comfort of your family. Failing to pay due attention to it will make the hot summer months extremely clammy and the cold winter months shockingly dry. Thankfully the modern-day heating and cooling systems take care of this aspect. However, some homes may require an additional humidifier and dehumidifier to bring thigs up to notch. Your local HVAC technician can help you gauge the situation and give correct advice.
Programmable Thermostat A Must Have
Using a programmable thermostat is always the best option. Once you program it as per your need, you don’t have to worry about readjusting it frequently. It adjusts the home temperature along with humidity as per the program that you have set. On the other hand, a manual thermostat will require constant intervention to maintain the appropriate temperature. If you forget to make changes to the manual thermostat, it will continue to run as before irrespective of what is really needed at that time.
Needless, to say programmable thermostats make your work easy. As long as you set the temperature sensibly for the different times of the day, you have nothing to worry about. Your thermostat will take care of the rest.
If your home feels uncomfortable even with a perfectly working heating and cooling system, it is most probably because of incorrect temperature setting on the thermostat. Once you correct the settings as advised above, you will not only feel a drastic change in the comfort level of your home, but there will also be a sharp decline in your power bills.
The efficient performance of your air conditioner depends on its annual maintenance and cleaning to a very large extent. Now, maintenance is something that you cannot do on your own because of its technical nature. However, cleaning your AC is something that almost every homeowner can do. So if you want a clean AC unit and save money as well, here is your DIY guide.
Why Is Cleaning The AC Important?
The AC is running fine, so what if it’s dirty? If you, too, think the same, it is time for you to know some basic facts.
Cleaning the AC ensures that the air quality in your home does not deteriorate. The air filters capture dust and allergens, but if they are not changed or cleaned regularly, they are bound to choke. As a result, they will start trapping moisture, and where there is moisture, there is mold.
Frequently cleaning your AC helps maintain its energy efficiency. When the air filters or any other component of the AC get clogged with impurities, they put the system under stress and make it work that much harder. The harder your unit works, the more power it consumes. So a clean AC unit is a better option any day.
Preparation For Cleaning The AC
Yes, you need to prepare to clean the AC. You can’t simply pick up a brush and give it a good scrubbing. Here are a couple of things that you need to do before beginning the actual clean up.
1. Locate The Instruction Manual And Check Instructions – First, locate the instruction manual that came with your AC and go through it. Inside the manual will be detailed information on how to access the air filters and clean them. It may even have information on cleaning other parts of the AC.
2. Collect All Equipment Needed In One Place – Once you begin the cleaning process, you cannot run back and forth continuously to gather things needed for cleaning. So, make a list of items required and collect them all together so that everything is within easy reach.
3. Wear Protective Gear – The protective gear in this instance would include gloves, goggles, and a mask (if you have dust allergy). Wearing full clothes is also a good idea as this way, the dust, grime, or any other irritants will not find their way on your skin.
Things That You Need To Clean The AC
Here is a list of things that you need to clean the AC:
1. A vacuum cleaner with a long hose.
2. A brush.
3. A couple Of Rags.
4. Warm soapy water.
5. A garbage bag to dispose of the used rags.
Safely Cleaning My AC Unit
To begin with, let’s make one point absolutely clear, you should not do in-depth cleaning of the AC on your own. It is because, due to a lack of training and technical know-how, you can unknowingly do more harm to your unit. The next best thing that you can do is take care of its basic cleaning that is recommended by the manufacturer. Doing so will not put the warranty of your system under jeopardy.
1. Turn Off The Power Supply – You need to first disconnect your AC unit from its power source. Turn off the circuit breaker to the unit, and that should take care of disconnecting it from the power supply. Next, discharge the capacitor as per the instructions given by the manufacturer. The capacitor holds and extra charge, so it needs to be dealt with carefully.
2. Clean Outside Of The Unit First – Before trying to clean the unit inside, you need to first clean its outside. This way, you can ensure that no extra dirt and debris find their way inside when you take off the front cover. Using a soft wet cloth gently rub-down the entire exterior of the unit. Wipe it clean with a dry cloth so that no moisture remains.
3. Clean The Filter – Remove the front cover of the AC unit by unscrewing the plastic screws or pulling it open. There may be a metal grill on the cover, remove it carefully so that you don’t cut yourself on any sharp surface. Now, you should be able to see the filter. If the filter is reusable, remove it and soak it in some warm water with a little detergent or liquid wash. Gently swish it around to release dust and dirt. Using a soft brush, scrub it without using any force. Once done, rinse the filter with clean water and set it aside to dry completely. In case the filter is not reusable, replace it with a new one at least once a month.
4. Clean All Easy To Reach Areas As Recommended By Manufacturer – Reach inside and gently clean the bottom of the unit along with the back cover with a moist rag. The rolls can be cleaned with warm water. Wipe down the fan blades gently, taking care not to bend them. When using a wet rag or warm water for cleaning the blades, cover its electrical components with a dry rag.
5. Reassemble The Unit And Power It Back On – Once you are done with the cleaning, reassemble the unit taking due care to do it correctly and without using brut force. Once done, switch on the circuit breaker, and that’s all there is to it.
Is Professional Cleaning Of The AC Necessary
If you want a clean AC unit, you have to see to its professional cleaning at least once a year. Only a trained technician can give it a thorough cleaning that it requires. The AC consists of many parts, some of which are electrical. Due care needs to be taken while cleaning them as they need special care.
Always Safety First
Whenever you undertake any DIY project, your first concern should always be safety. Only if you are convinced that you can handle the AC cleaning project on your own should you proceed with it. Else call in the professionals. They will give you a spanking clean AC unit without you having to worry about anything.
Aztil AC handles all AC and HVAC related jobs in West Palm Beach, Florida. Our trained technicians take care of everything, from maintenance to repairs and replacements to installations. Give us a call anytime at +1-888-729-8452 if you need any help with your heating and cooling system.
Its never too late to think about buying a new air conditioner or upgrading to a better one. Maybe your current AC is a decade old and on the last leg of its journey or is not giving you the desired energy savings which a new one could. Whatever be the reason, its best to plan and know your options. Many people call us to figure out which air conditioning system would be most suited to meet the needs of their families. In a bid to help out all those who have this question in mind, we decided to put together this informative post.
Ductless Air Conditioning Systems
Also known as mini-split systems, these ACs don’t have ducts to circulate the cool air. Since there is no need for ducts, these take up less space. The ductless ACs have an outdoor compressor unit and individual indoor air handler units. Each air handler is linked to the outdoor unit via a small conduit. The air handlers help cool the room as per their individual temperature setting. The main advantages of these systems are:
1. They offer the flexibility of use. You can switch off the air handlers in the rooms that are not in use and also set a different temperature for different rooms.
2. They are energy efficient.
3. They work best in homes and buildings that do not have any ductwork.
Heat Pump Air Conditioning Systems
Heat pumps are a different technology altogether. They can either be ducted or ductless. So you can use these even when you have ductwork and also when you don’t. Thanks to the presence of a reversing valve, these are capable of providing both heating and cooling. The logic is simple; it reverses the flow of the refrigerant, which in turn allows for heating in winters. Heat pumps are the most efficient substitute for those air conditioning and heating systems that use fuel, oil, or electricity. These, too, can be used with individual air handlers. The prime benefits of heat pumps are:
1. They make both heating and cooling possible, depending on the season.
2. They permit temperature customization.
3. They are highly energy efficient.
4. They work seamlessly in homes and buildings that have ducts, as well as those that don’t.
Central Air Conditioning Systems
Presently, central air conditioners are the most commonly used systems in homes and apartments for cooling and heating. The central ACs usually consist of an outdoor unit called the condenser, which is connected to the rest of the house through comprehensive ductwork. At the end of these ducts are the vents and filters from which the cool air blows into a room. The central air conditioners are a power-packed system that renders cooling even on the hottest days. Thanks to the advancements in technology, the central ACs of today are not money pits like their predecessors that were costly and expensive to run. The present central air conditioning systems are:
1. Energy efficient
2. Help maintain the same temperature throughout the home.
3. Require only annual maintenance to maintain their effectiveness and efficiency.
What Air Conditioning System Is Best For You?
Every home has its unique features. The air conditioning system that you decide upon should be able to satisfy all your cooling and heating needs without causing any disruptions in your house.
1. Where There Is No Ductwork – If you live in a house, building, or an apartment that has no pre-existing ductwork, you will have to look for a unit that is ductless. Your two probable choices under the circumstances are the mini-split AC systems or the ductless heat pumps. Depending on your budget, you can choose either. They are both energy efficient and do not require much in terms of renovations. The independent air handlers can be placed anywhere from up in the ceiling to down under the floorboards or the usual sidewall mounting.
2. When You Live In A Small Home – If you live in a small home that does not have large square footage, you can go for a mini-split system if there are no ducts or a central AC if there is pre-existing ductwork. Again, you need to pay heed to your finances before making any final calls.
3. Where There Is Pre-Existing Ductwork – In a home that already has pre-existing ductwork, you can either use a ducted heat pump or a central air conditioner. Remember that the heat pump is the best alternative to the systems that use fuel or oil. So, depending on your pockets and environmental consciousness, you can make the decision.
Things To Consider While Choosing An Air Conditioning System
Choosing an air conditioning system for your home is not as easy as going to the market and picking whatever digs your fancy. It has to be a well thought out decision as your comfort at home will depend on it. Here are a few things that you should consider while choosing an air conditioning system for your home:
1. Size – The size of your home will be the deciding factor in the size of your AC. Buying an oversized or an undersized AC is an expensive mistake. It will not only make for an uncomfortable home, but you will not see much in terms of energy efficiency either. The wrong size will put tremendous strain on the cooling unit and run it to the ground even before it is halfway through its useful product life.
2. Cost Of Installation – AC installation is in no way cheap. Take the cost of installation for the various cooling systems into account as well before making a purchase decision. Your local HVAC contractor will be your best guide in this regard.
3. Quality – No matter what, always go for quality as that will always stand you in good stead. Compromising on quality means frequent repairs and expensive replacements.
In The End
The HVAC industry has come now with new and energy-efficient options to meet all pockets. There is a system out there that is a perfect fit for your home. You only need to research well and weigh the pros and cons of all your options before deciding.
With the help of a professional HVAC contractor like Aztil AC, you can guarantee your home comfort. Our team of trained and experienced professionals takes care of everything from installation and maintenance to repairs and replacements. We are intent on making your home the most comfortable it can be.
That time is long gone when people thought of air purifiers as a status symbol. Today, they have become a need of the time. Pollution levels are high everywhere and so the clean and fresh air that our grandparents used to talk about is just a pipe dream. But that does not mean all is lost. When humans make mistakes, they try to nullify their effects as well. Sometimes they succeed, and sometimes they don’t. We invented fuel-driven vehicles, mass production factories, and such. They made the air that we breathe uncleanly. As a whole, we cannot make the air outdoor clean for everyone, but we can surely control the air quality indoors. Air purifiers were invented to make breathing indoors easier for the elderly, children, and those who suffer from breathing ailments. Today, they are being used in most homes for even preventing illnesses caused by germs and viruses.
What Are Air Purifiers?
As the name itself suggests, air purifiers are devices that are used to clean the air in a room. What they essentially do is remove the contaminants present in the air and make it clean and hygienic to breathe.
Air purifiers are mostly promoted as being helpful to people who suffer from allergies and also asthma patients. It even gets rid of second-hand cigarette smoke. Air purifiers are commercially made in two forms.
1. The small units that can be used as stand-alone which are most popular in homes.
2. As a part of a larger unit where they are attached to the air handler or the HVAC to clean the air in a bigger space. Commonly, these are used in medical institutions and large industries.
The Advantage Of Using Air Purifiers
Allergens like dust, pollen, mold spores, pet dander, dust mite feces are present in most homes. These trigger various allergies in people who are sensitive to them. Add to it the risk posed by the presence of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) and secondary smoking, the likelihood of falling ill increases further. Air purifiers can help minimize the effect of all of these and provide a cleaner living environment. Consequently, your family will not fall ill or have allergies as frequently as before.
Technique Used By Air Purifiers
Air purifiers use two types of technologies. These also form the basis on which they work.
1. Active Purifying Technique – Negatively charged ions are released into the air by active purifiers. This causes the pollutants or the contaminants to attach to the surfaces.
2. Passive Purifying Technique – passive air purification units make use of air filters to eliminate the pollutants. These are more efficient because they permanently remove the impurities from the air and lock them in the filters.
Do Air Purifiers Really Work?
Yes, air purifiers do work. They trap a significantly high percentage of the allergens and other irritants that are airborne and pass through the filters. However, more important is the fact that air purifier alone cannot improve the quality of the indoor air. They are most effective when used in conjunction with regular dusting, cleaning, and mopping using a good quality disinfectant.
How Do Air Purifiers Work?
Air purifiers have a multi-layered filter. Each layer is designed in such a manner that it traps different types of contaminants. The air passes through the purifier, and the filters trap the unwanted particles and send back clean air into the room. If the truth be told, the filters act as a sieve, trapping all that is not needed and letting the clean air pass.
Can Air Purifier Get Rid Of Bacteria And Viruses?
Normally, air purifiers are most successful in eliminating large particles present in the air. It is because they get trapped in the HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter easily. The air purifier can trap the bacteria only if they are large enough. However, viruses are a challenge because of their size; they are significantly small. On their own, viruses don’t usually float in the air. But when somebody who is ill sneezes, they release the virus trapped inside small drops of moisture. If these moisture droplets are large enough, the filter of the air purifier traps them along with the virus enclosed inside. And, if the moisture droplets are too large, they fall from the air along with the captured virus. So, depending on the size, the air purifier may or may not remove bacteria and viruses.
Do You Need An Air Purifier?
All homes these days use HVAC systems that circulate the same air repeatedly. The circulating air picks up particle matter from one place and transfers them to another, thereby just sending them bouncing in your home. The air filters of your heating and cooling system are not designed to capture small-sized particles. They just trap visible size particles. The filter of the air purifier, on the other hand, is specifically meant to capture those small particles.
Your home is your sanctuary. It is a place where you feel safe, secure, and comfortable. Maintaining good air quality inside your beautiful home will keep you and your family hale and hearty. So, to answer the question of whether you need an air purifier for your home, the answer is YES.
Can Air Purifier Keep You From Getting Sick?
The air purifier is not a magic wand. It can only do so much. Realistically speaking, it can bring a drastic decrease in the number of times you fall ill due to the poor air quality of your home. It may also reduce the intensity of the allergies, but it will not cure you permanently or present you with good health forever.
Aztil AC To Help Find The Best Air Purifier For Your West Palm Beach Home
At Aztil AC, we understand the importance of good health. We can help you find the best air purifier for your West Palm Beach home. If you need any assistance or advice, you can call us at +1-888-729-8452.
We are looking forward to helping you make your home a safer and more comfortable place.
Wanting a home that is neat and clean is not enough. What you need is a home free of allergens and pathogens. These are the particles and micro-organisms that cause allergies and illnesses. In a bid to limit these unwanted invaders in your home, you need something that can sanitize or disinfect the air that circulates. All homes have heating and cooling systems, so the best solution seems to be the UV Germicidal Lights that can be fitted in the unit.
UV light or the ultraviolet light is a short wavelength light that disrupts the DNA and thereby inactivates the bacteria and viruses. The effectiveness of UV lights can be judged from the fact that Niels Finsen won a Noble Prize in medicine for treating TB or tuberculosis, in 1903.
Today, the popularity of UV lights has grown in leaps and bounds as an effective disinfectant. It is used to sanitize not just hospital rooms, tools, and equipment but also used for eliminating germs from drinking water and air.
The biggest natural source of UV light is the Sun. But since all rooms in your home may not be getting adequate sunlight, the best course of action is to install UV Germicidal Lights in the AC unit.
UV Germicidal Lights In AC
At the very outset, let’s be very clear on one thing, the UV Germicidal Lights in AC do not disinfect the objects in your home. It simply sterilizes the air that passes in its range.
The UV Germicidal Lights for AC are fitted either inside the ductwork or near the coil of the air conditioner. They destroy micro-organisms like mold, its spores, mildew, fungi, bacteria, and viruses that come in the line-of-sight of the installed UV bulb.
Basic Info About UV Germicidal Lights In AC
Here is some very basic information about the UV lights installed in the AC:
1. Usually, the UV lights are installed by the HVAC technicians with the help of magnets.
2. The UV Germicidal Light needs no maintenance. You just have to change it when it burns out.
3. Typically a UV bulb lasts around a year.
4. The energy cost of using a UV bulb is a mere $2 per month.
Types Of AC UV Lights
There are 2 types of UV lights that are typically used in HVAC systems:
1. Coil Sterilization UV Lights – This is usually a stick or tube type of light that is positioned inside the return air duct, close to the coil of the air handler. It is the most commonly used UV light for the HVAC systems and runs 24/7.
2. Air Sterilization UV Lights – This is a comprehensive UV light unit for disinfecting the moving air. It is mounted in the return air duct and switches on and off as the air handler blower cycles.
Effectiveness Of UV Germicidal Lights
Two prominent studies, one in the hospital environment and the other in HVAC systems, vouch for the effectiveness of the UV lights as viable disinfectants.
1. Infection Control In Hospitals – A study conducted in 2012 by the Duke University Medical Center found that UV lights got rid of almost 97% of bacteria, which was drug-resistant bacteria from 50 hospital rooms.
2. Reduction Of Fungal Contamination In Air Handlers – This study was conducted in a commercial office building. After 4 months of using UV mounted HVAC, it was found that the fungal levels in the air handling unit were significantly lower than before.
Needless to say, even homes will benefit from using UV Germicidal Lights in their air conditioners or HVAC systems.
Advantages Of UV Lights
1. UV lights can kill mold, mold spores, microbes, and viruses present in the air. The benefit of this is that there is less likelihood of your family suffering from breathing ailments and skin irritations. They will be less prone to seasonal problems like flu and cold and will have fewer allergies.
2. UV lights are also known to nullify the effects of VOCs or Volatile Organic compounds, thereby providing much-needed relief to people who have respiratory problems, COPD, and other pulmonary diseases.
3. The UV lights even disinfect the air conditioner that is within its range, making it more hygienic.
Disadvantages Of UV Lights
UV lights are effective only if you are doing your bit in maintaining your air conditioner or HVAC unit. The ductwork in your home must be properly sealed. The air filters that are being used should have a high MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) rating, and they should be changed monthly. Most importantly, you should not be missing your heating and cooling system’s annual tune-up. That being said, using UV lights will only help get rid of the organic contaminants. But what about the inorganic particles like dust and dander. Sadly, no amount of UV exposure will help you get rid of those.
Another important aspect of UV light sterilization is that it only destroys those organic contaminants that fall within its line of sight. The rest will remain as is and not get eliminated. The range of the UV light is not too large, so that is another limiting factor.
HVAC UV lights or the air conditioner UV Germicidal Lights are an effective solution in eliminating a large percentage of organic contaminants from the air passing through the air handler. It is an upgrade that almost everybody can afford. Not only is it within budget, but the cost of running and replacing it is also relatively cheap.
If you live in West Palm Beach, Florida, and wish to further explore the UV light options for your AC, give a call to Aztil AC at +1-888-729-8452. We are looking forward to helping you get the best comfort solutions for your home. Our trained and experienced team of expert technicians is available 24/7 so that you don’t suffer any discomfort because of your heating and cooling system. If you have any queries or concerns or need further clarification with respect to the HVAC system, pick up your phone and contact us.