April 20, 2015
Can I Put A Fence Around an Outdoor Unit? Yes, but if you decide to put a fence around the unit either to hide it or keep pets and children away from it, the fence should be placed at least two feet from the unit. A wide gate should be incorporated into the design to allow service personnel access. The fence should be designed to allow airflow through it. A solid fence could impede the flow of air to the A/C unit causing it to run more and be much less efficient.
- week of April 13, 2015 - Outdoor Units and Your Dog - your outdoor unit should not be accessible to your dog. Not only could they chew wires and drains causing expensive repairs, but dog urine has a very acidic content that eats away at aluminum, which is what your coil and fins are made of. Should a dog urinate on the unit, the fins and coil will start to deteriorate within a short length of time. If the unit is running at the time the dog urinates the urine will be sucked into the inside and swirled around causing faster deterioration. The eventual outcome is the replacement of the coil and fins or the entire unit.
- week of April 6, 2015 - Placement of your outdoor unit and how it can effect the cooling of your home:
Avoid locating your air conditioner in direct sunlight, particularly on the south side of your home, where it will be forced to work much harder to do its job.
If it is in direct sunlight, consider planting trees and shrub, to shade it. However make sure there is plenty of space around the unit for proper air flow.
Keep leaves, grass, and storage at least 2 feet away from outside unit
- week of March 30, 2015 - Have your cooling system checked, cleaned and serviced every year. Just as a tune-up for your car can improve your gas mileage, a yearly tune-up of your cooling system can improve efficiency and comfort. Here are a few the items that McClintock Heating and Cooling checks, cleans and services when performing your air conditioning maintenance:
Outdoor coil will be inspected for heat transfer loss and will be power washed
Indoor coils will be inspected
Fans will be inspected & cleaned
Refrigerant checked for proper charge to assure no leaks
Exposed ductwork will be checked for leaks
Thermostats will be checked and calibrated as required
Motors and bearings will be lubricated as required
Controls and safeties will be tested
Drain will be checked
Relays and contactors will be inspected
Unit wiring and electrical disconnect will be inspected
Air filters will be inspected and replace if requested
§ Advise of any abnormal conditions and make recommendations if necessary
- week of March 23, 2015 - I have a heat pump, does my system still need to be checked and serviced for cooling season? Absolutely! A heat pump system both cools and heats your home and it’s been running most of the winter 8 to 16 hours a day. A thorough check and servicing now will not only keep your heat pump system performing at peak efficiency; it can catch small issues before they become problems.
- week of March 16, 2015 - I just had my system checked last fall, why should I have it checked again this spring? Your a/c unit has been sitting idle since the start of heating season and the outdoor unit, especially the coil, needs to be cleaned of the dirt and debris that has built up during this especially cold and wet winter. A cleaning, tune up and check now, will help your system run more efficiently this summer, saving you money on your power bill as well as taking care of any potential problems that might cause breakdowns.
- week of March 9, 2015 - Don't just have your system "checked", have your system "checked, cleaned and serviced". Our seasonal tune up not only checks your entire system including all exposed ducts to make sure it's operating properly, we clean the coils and fans, plus service the system by tightening electrical connections, lubricating all moving parts, and adjusting thermostat calibration.
- week of March 2, 2015 - Now that March is finally here, warm weather is just around the corner. Don't forget to schedule your a/c system maintenance now so your system will operate at peak performance on that first hot day.
- week of February 23, 2015 - Seal and insulate your home to save money on you energy bills
§ Apply silicone caulk to small cracks and polyurethane expandable spray foam to larger cracks.
§ Install weather stripping to windows and doors.
§ Check or have the insulation levels in your attic, walls and crawlspace checked. If necessary add more insulation.
§ Many home improvement stores offer how-to clinics on this subject.
- week of February 16, 2015 - Can ice and snow damage my outdoor unit? While you should always try to keep snow, ice, and leaves away from your outdoor unit, it is especially important if you have a heat pump. Anything on the top or sides of a heat pump can restrict air flow and possibly damage the unit. Look at the outdoor heat pump after bad weather for signs of ice or snow. If the heat pump is covered in ice or snow it should be removed for it to work properly. Turn the thermostat to Emergency heat or off and carefully attempt to remove the snow and ice. You can pour warm water over the unit to melt the snow and ice. Do not use any sharp objects to pick or knock the ice off of the heat pump. This could cause severe damage to the unit. Once the unit is clear of snow and ice turn the thermostat back to normal heating, if the unit ices up again, call for service.
- week of February 9, 2015 - When was the last time you changed your heating system's air filter? If you are not sure, next time write the date on the filter for easy reference.
- week of February 2, 2015 - Repair or Replace? The age of your HVAC system, its warranty and the number of problems the system has had are the most important factors to look at. Is your system still under warranty? A repair probably makes sense. Do you have a system that’s more than 10 years old and have you already had several repairs? Then replacement is probably a better decision.
- week of January 26, 2015 - Are your Ducts Insulated? The unsealed ducts in your attic and crawlspaces lose air, and uninsulated ducts lose heat -- wasting energy and money. However be sure to have a qualified professionals do the work to ensure the job is done correctly.
- week of January 19, 2015 - Have you changed your filter this month? A clean filter will prevent dust and dirt from building up on the system, which will not only help your system run better; it can prevent expensive repairs and early system failure.
- week of January 12, 2015 - Will a whole house humidifier make me more comfortable? A host of health issues can plague you if your house isn't properly humidified during the heating season. Heated air is dry air - and dry air with a humidity level below 30% can cause respiratory irritation, uncomfortably dry nasal passages, nosebleeds and chapped and itchy skin; it can also aggravate conditions such as allergies and asthma. Experts agree that a humidity level of over 30% is optimal and when you're running your heating system that means running a humidifier too.
- week of January 5, 2015 - It’s going to be very cold in this area this week, if your heat isn’t working first of all check the thermostat to verify that it is working. If the thermostat screen is blank, check to see if it has batteries (some models do) and replace if necessary. If the screen is flashing a “code” write the information down and turn the system off then back on again so see if it “resets”.
- week of December 29, 2014 - Happy New Year! The McClintock Heating & Cooling office will be closed January 1st to celebrate the new year. However our technicians are available every day to help you with your emergency heating needs. Please call 704.321.5207 and follow the prompts to leave a message for a technician to return your call. From our family to yours, we hope you have a safe and happy new year!
- week of December 22, 2014 - Happy Holidays! The McClintock Heating & Cooling office will be closed the afternnon of December 24th and all day December 25th to celebrate the holidays. However our technicians are available every day to help you with your emergency heating needs. Please call 704.321.5207 and follow the prompts to leave a message for a technician to return your call. From our family to yours, we hope you have a wonderful holiday!
- week of December 15, 2014 - Duct Tips- Ducts that don't work properly can create serious, life-threatening carbon monoxide (CO) problems in the home. Visually check your ducts for air leaks. First, look for sections that should be joined but have separated and then look for obvious holes. If you see areas of concern, have a qualified professional assess your ducts.
- week of December 8, 2014 - How would you like to control your home's heating, cooling and general energy usage from anywhere using an internet-enabled smart phone, tablet or computer? With a Trane ComfortLink Home Energy Management Thermostat and Nexia Home Intelligence you can remotely monitor and control the thermostat and reduce your home's energy consumption up to 10-15 percent.
- week of December 1, 2014 - Can an air cleaning system reduce colds and flu in my home? Studies show that the Trane CleanEffects, a whole house air cleaner, can remove more than 99% of common viruses and germs from the filtered air in your home. This means the Trane CleanEffects can be a powerful tool for helping battle the flu virus and cold germs at home, where you and your family may be exposed to viruses that circulate in the air you breathe indoors.
- week of November 24, 2014 - Happy Thanksgiving! On Thanksgiving Day and throughout the long holiday weekend we have technicians available to assist you with your emergency heating needs. Please call 704.321.5207 and follow the prompts to leave a message for a technician to return your call.
From our family to yours, we hope you have a wonderful holiday!
- week of November 17, 2014 - Good article on winterizing your home! Especially note number 1 and number 6 - 10 money-saving and safety tips to winterize your home
- week of November 10, 2014 - Select energy-efficient products when you buy new heating and cooling equipment. If you are considering purchasing a new heating and air conditioning system, an energy-efficient model could save you up to 50% on your utility bill for cooling. Your heating and air conditioning contractor should be able to give you energy fact sheets for different types, models, and designs to help you compare energy usage. For furnaces, look for high Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) ratings. The national minimum is 78% AFUE, but there are ENERGY STAR models on the market that exceed 90% AFUE. For air conditioners, look for a high Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). The current minimum is 13 SEER for central air conditioners. ENERGY STAR models are 14 SEER or more.
- week of November 3, 2014 - Make sure you change the batteries in both your smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector. Even if they plug in or are hard wired into your electrical system, they both have batteries that need changing. A good way to remember this is to change the batteries when you change your clocks to standard time.
- week of October 27, 2014 - Before you call for an emergency service: We recommend trying these 3 tips; they may save you money and time.
Check the thermostat to verify that it is working. If the thermostat screen is blank, check to see if it has batteries (some models do) and replace if necessary. If the screen is flashing a “code” write the information down and turn the system off then back on again so see if it “resets”.
Check your breaker box to verify the breaker is on.
Check outdoor fuses or disconnect.
- week of October 20, 2014 - We often get questions about “Zoning” and how it can help homes be more comfortable.
- Zoning is where “dampers” are used to direct heating and cooling from a single HVAC system to more than one area, as needed.
- Multiple HVAC units, each serving a different area or floor are not zoned; they are completely independent systems.
- Zoning your HVAC system can help save energy as well as make your home more comfortable. If you want to sleep in a cool bedroom at night, why should you have to cool the rest of your house, too? Bedrooms and living areas can be maintained at independent temperatures any time of day or night.
- Discuss the possibility of “Zoning” your air conditioning system with your Heating and cooling professional.
- week of October 13, 2014 - Why have outdoor units gotten so big, my new one is twice as tall as the one it replaced. Units are larger to be more efficient and cost less to run. A bigger unit houses a bigger coil with more surface area so it will cool more efficiently and need a smaller horsepower fan which draws less wattage. A lower head pressure means a lower compression ratio, so the compressor draws less wattage and doesn't work as hard. Less wattage used equals cost savings!
- week of October 6, 2014 - Does your home have a CO detector? Your should have a Carbon Monoxide monitor to alert you to harmful CO levels if you have a fuel-burning furnace, stove or other appliance in your home, or an attached garage. Read more about the dangers at our blog - http://www.mcclintockhvac.com/blog/preventing-detecting-carbon-monoxide/
- week of September 29, 2014 - Did you know that while spring is the primary season for allergies, fall has its share of allergens? For more info on Indoor Air Quality solutions - http://www.mcclintockhvac.com/indoor-air-quality-iaq-charlotte-ncs-iaq-specialists.aspx
- week of September 22, 2014 - Have you changed your filter this month? A clean filter will prevent dust and dirt from building up on the system, which will not only help your system run better; it can prevent expensive repairs and early system failure.
- week of September 15, 2014 - Select energy-efficient products when you buy new heating and cooling equipment. If you are considering purchasing a new heating and air conditioning system, an energy-efficient model could save up to 50% on your utility bill for cooling.
- week of September 8, 2014 - What problems can be caused by a too large or small system? An oversized system will cost more to install and because it will have a shorter run time, your home will experience improper humidity control and large temperature swings. However an undersized system will be constantly running so you will have higher energy costs, reduced comfort in your home and the system will have a shorter life.
- week of September 1, 2014 - Why is a load calculation important? A proper load calculation is the key to customizing your comfort solution. Experts agree - there is no other way to ensure your family’s comfort, health, and safety. ENERGY STAR says - A good contractor WILL NOT size your equipment solely on square footage or assume your existing equipment was sized properly.