How often should I change/replace my filter?
This varies from home to home. In general, if you’re buying the cheaper fiberglass filters, these should be changed every 30 days. If you are buying the slightly higher-cost pleated filters, filter life may vary, but here’s our general recommendation:
- If you have a typical home with no pets, filters should be changed every 90 days max.
- If you have 1 pet and/or allergies, filters should be changed every 45-60 days.
- If you have severe allergies or multiple pets in the home, we recommend replacing your filter regularly, about every 30-45 days.
Every home is different. If you look at your filter and it looks dirty, odds are it’s time to change it, even if it seems too soon.
My Furnace won’t kick on, what’s next?
There are a few small things that are worth checking before you call for service.
- Thermostat – First make the thermostat is set to HEAT and that the temperature is set above that of your home.
- Is the furnace on? – Your furnace should have a switch near it called a service disconnect. This could be anything from a light switch to a gray electrical box near the heating unit. Make sure the switch or breaker is on.
- Breakers – Sometimes breakers might trip, so make sure it’s on. If it’s off and when you turn it back on, if it trips again, immediately call Childs Heating & Air before you continue to attempt to reset the breaker.
Is a burning smell normal?
Did you just turn your heat on for the first time? If the answer is yes, generally this is normal. The first time you turn your heat on for the winter, a dusty burning smell is normal. If the smell doesn’t go away shortly or continues to get worse, turn your heater off and call us to come take a look.
When is a burning smell NOT normal? If the smell continues to get worse or smells electrical, this is not normal and could be a serious electrical issue. Turn the unit OFF IMMEDIATELY and call us for service!
What is SEER?
SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. This is part of the rating system for how efficient a heat and air unit is. Standard Efficiency SEER rating in 2021 is 14 SEER equipment. Anything over this number is considered high Efficiency.
Why should I not add coolant to my system without checking for a leak or repairing an existing leak?
It is illegal to release refrigerants into the atmosphere. When a leaking system has refrigerant added, it will leak out again. Some refrigerants contain chemicals that can deplete the ozone layer. Other refrigerants can be extremely harmful to the environment.
What’s the average life expectancy of equipment?
On average, most heat and air systems will last 10-15 years before experiencing annual or semi-annual failures.
Can I just replace the outdoor unit on an older system to save money?
Unfortunately, no. Older systems use a refrigerant called R-22, generally referred to as Freon. New systems use a different refrigerant called R-410a, so these systems are not compatible.
Will a bigger system perform better?
No, a larger system that can cool your house down faster will in fact perform poorly. A unit needs to be properly sized to heat and cool your home. If a unit is oversized, it has a higher utility cost to operate. It will shorten the lifespan of the equipment and will not allow the unit to dehumidify your home properly.
Should I have my furnace and air conditioner serviced every year?
Yes, the equipment needs to be serviced at a minimum annually or bi-annually.
Reasons to have your system serviced:
- Seasonal maintenance will allow us to inspect the mechanical system for potential problems.
- It will allow us to inspect the performance system to ensure that it is operating to its maximum ability and that you’re not overpaying on utilities.
- The safety system – You may have heard it said that “safety is no accident” and we at Childs Heating & Air want to make sure your air conditioning system is operating safely. When operating normally, these systems are generally safe, and we want to keep it that way!
I’m concerned about bacterial growth in my air conditioner, what should I do?
Give us a call, we can inspect your unit for bacterial growth If it is found, we can show you several options to take care of your home for years to come.
How can I reduce my energy cost?
Turn your thermostat up a degree – this is a start. Several other things you can do is have a programable smart thermostat installed. Keep your air filters clean and have seasonal maintenance performed to keep your system running in top shape.
What is a hybrid heat dual fuel system?
A Hybrid heating system is when a heat up also has a gas furnace. When the weather outside is mild and a heat pump is very efficient to heat with, that’s what’s used. When it gets really cold out and heat pumps aren’t working as well, we can switch to a gas furnace.
How does a two-stage heating and cooling system work?
Traditional heating and cooling equipment is called single-stage – it’s either on or it’s off. With high-efficiency systems, we can have two-stages or more of heating and cooling. It’s kind of like having more than one gear in your car. When the weather is nice but you need some air conditioning, it can run at a low stage that uses less energy. As the temperatures get more extreme, the air conditioner runs at a higher stage giving you more conditioning power.
Is freon as a refrigerant being discontinued?
Yes, Over the past 10-15 years we have been converting systems to a more environmentally friendly refrigerant. As of January 1st, 2020 there was a ban placed on R-22 Freon. There is no more being produced or imported to the US. Freon is still available at this time, but availability is dwindling as time goes on. Also due to this ban, the price of this refrigerant is increased regularly.
Can carbon monoxide build up in my home?
Yes, carbon monoxide can come from a few different places. The biggest possible source can come from your home’s gas heating system. If you have a gas furnace be sure to have seasonal maintenance and checks done. We want to make sure the heat exchanger is checked for cracks. If and when a heat exchanger cracks the furnace exhaust can enter your home and allow extremely dangerous levels of carbon monoxide inside.
Will anything help control the humidity in my home?
Yes, whether we want to control humidity in the home by adding it or removing it, we have solutions!
- Dehumidification – If your home is too humid we can solve this in several ways. If humidity is only slightly high, the HVAC system may be working inefficiently or the duct system may not be sealed properly. Dehumidifiers work great, especially if done with a whole home ducted dehumidifier. These units can dehumidify your entire home effectively. If you have old equipment replacing it with multistage or two-stage cooling can help dehumidify as well.
- Humidification – If your home too dry, we can solve this with whole-home ducted humidification. Call us today for more information on how this can be done in your home today.
What is indoor air quality?
Indoor air quality, or IAQ for short, is how clean and healthy is the air in your home. The EPA reports most homes to have pollutant levels 2-5 times higher than typically found outdoors. In today’s modern world, we have several different methods to reduce pollutants, allergens, and other air quality concerns. Give us a call today and we can help you understand how we can make your home’s air healthy again.
What’s the best indoor air quality product?
With indoor air quality, there is no one size fits all product. There are a few solutions we utilize that come close to this, but different products are designed to help air quality in different ways. Call us today with your air quality concerns and let the professionals at Childs Heating & Air build the right plan to make your home’s air clean!
What is the best thermostat to use for my heating and air system?
There are several really good thermostats available today. Here at Childs Heating & Air, we believe the best thermostats made today are from Emerson Sensi. These thermostats have undergone countless hours of engineering and testing. If you’re looking for a WiFi thermostat, the Sensi smart thermostat is one of the most reliable thermostats we have ever used. We know thermostats, We choose Sensi.
What is smart maintenance?
Have you ever thought, “I wonder how good my air conditioner is working?” And then had a company come do a tune-up on it? What if we could do better than just doing a tune-up? Traditional maintenance is great and a must, but WE can do more than just looking at the system once or twice a year. How would you like it if the professionals at Childs Heating & Air could be at your home 24 hours a day, 7 days a week year-round, ensuring the air works perfectly? Now we can, with the new Emerson Sensi Predict. Predict is an actively monitored diagnostic system we install on your air conditioner that gives you a sort of check engine light on your A/C unit. The moment a failure occurs, we know. With Predict we get an alert if something fails. The system also can help us prevent up to 80% of failures before they can become a bigger problem. Want the peace of mind of knowing your HVAC system is working 24/7? Ask us today how Childs Heating & Air and Sensi Predict can help!