Air Conditioner Maintenance and Home Comfort Tips

Your air conditioner is the biggest reason why your home is comfortable throughout the year. If it works perfectly, it really doesn’t matter how high the temperature is in the summer months or how low it is in winters. But if it is not in good condition, you’re done! Not only is your home uncomfortable but discomfort doesn’t allow you to rest, relax or sleep. The threat of a worn out air conditioner is dangerous for your body and peace of mind. Get the most out of your AC system with these valuable tips.

Save Money: An inefficient air conditioner can cost you a lot. To keep it energy efficient, you need to sign up for an annual maintenance plan.
● Change Air Filter: Your air filter attracts a lot of dust and dirt when it runs. If it is not cleaned and changed, you could lose over 5% of your air conditioning efficiency.
● Avoid Expensive Repairs: If your air conditioner is well maintained, it can help you avoid expensive repairs later.
● Beat Hot Sticky Summers: However hot and sticky summer is, you keep your cool with a well functioning air conditioner. The same applies for the latter part of the year. However cold it is outside, you enjoy the best temperature at home.

Why suffer? Here’s what you can do to ensure your AC lasts you in good condition for years.

Air Conditioner Maintenance Tips

Annual AC Inspection: Call AC professionals at least once a year to make sure your air conditioner is in good working condition. If you don’t do so, the lifespan gets shortened and your investment is affected. Isn’t it better to spend a little on its health than incurring heavy expenses on a new one later? The best time to get it fixed is at the beginning of the summer season. If you missed it, just get it done now before winter sets in. Better late than never.

Replace Furnace Filters: It is a good idea to clean or replace furnace filters every three months. There are more dust and grime in the air than you know. It all gets clogged in the filter, endangering the health of your family. If you have children, allergic members or ailing seniors, you have all the more reason to change filters frequently. Changing filters allows your AC to work better using lesser energy.

Clean Around the Condenser Unit: The condenser unit is located outside your home. It’s easy to see why this needs regular cleaning. The placement makes it prone to accumulating dust and debris around the area that could obstruct airflow from the condenser fan. Clean it well. Trim grass or weed that grows around the area. Make sure the outdoor unit releases warm air. If it does not, the unit can overheat and break down.

Close Blinds and Drapes: To keep your home cool and reduce energy bills, try not to keep your air conditioner on when you are away. Close blinds and drapes on south and west facing windows to trap the cool air.

Call Hilltop Plumbing and Heating for Annual AC Maintenance

We are a licensed, bonded and insured plumbing and gas fitting company serving White Rock and Westminster area for over 45 years. We offer a full range of HVAC and drain cleaning services for residential and commercial properties, backed by guaranteed workmanship and parts warranty. Whether you need a new installation, routine maintenance or emergency repair, call us to let us know how we can be of service to you.

Furnace Maintenance Tips

Fall is just around the corner. As you start feeling the nip in the air, you need to look at your furnace to wake it up from hibernation. Timely maintenance can save you costly repair expenses later. It is really not that difficult to service your furnace. It helps to remember that when your heating or cooling system malfunctions, the cause is usually one of these three components: temperature control source, distribution or thermostat.

Check the source of the malfunction. Either the furnace has lost connection to power or the fuel is not reaching the unit or perhaps the fuel (gas or oil) may not be igniting. To ensure each component operates smoothly, here are some simple inspections you could do yourself between professional annual checks.

Thermostat Inspection

If you have an old furnace, check the thermostat. Is it turning on and off too quickly or overheating the room? There could be an issue with the thermostat. Call an HVAC technician to have it checked for repairs.

Filter Replacement

Do you change or clean the filter in your furnace? It gets clogged with dust, dirt and everything else that enters the furnace. There are several filters available in the market. Alternately, call an HVAC technician to have the clogged filter replaced professionally with a new one.

Check the Vent and Furnace Ducts

Not all damages can be easily fixed. If the damages are extensive, it is best to replace your furnace with a new one. Blocked vents can cause air obstruction, uneven heating and leaks. Your furnace is used for long hours so it is best to add cleaning to your monthly task list to keep it operating smoothly. Some furnaces are bear the main entrance. Others have fuses mounted within or outside the unit. Check the RESET button if the unit has one. If it is not working, wait 30 minutes and hit the RESET button again, once or twice.

Power Connection

If your furnace has simply stopped working, first check the power source. Is it properly connected and turned on? Are there any blown fuses or tripped circuit breakers? If there is a separate power switch, see if that is turned on. Have a look at the thermostat and the setting. Increase it by 5ºC to turn up the heat.

If the unit uses gas, check to see if the gas supply is turned on and the pilot light is lit. If you smell gas, shut off the gas and turn the lights on or off. If you suspect a leak, move away from

the house and call the gas company or fire department. Check to see if there is sufficient oil if it uses oil. If you are unsure, call an HVAC professional to check the furnace thoroughly.

Call Hilltop Plumbing & Heating for Annual AC Maintenance

Hilltop Plumbing and Heating is a licensed, bonded and insured plumbing and gas fitting company serving White Rock and Westminster area for over 45 years. We offer a full range of HVAC services and inspections for residential and commercial properties. If you need a new installation, routine maintenance or emergency repair, give us a call!

Why Does My Heater Come on When System is Set to Cool

Are you turning your air conditioner on in the summer and notice that even though it is running, your house is not being cooled? Has your electric bill spiked recently? If so, then your heater may be turning on even though your HVAC system is set to cool This is an annoying problem, not only because you are going to be paying a higher electric bill but also because your house is not cool! So what is going wrong and how do you fix it?

Issue #1: Thermostat Connection is Broken

One thing that may be happening is that the connection from your thermostat to your AC unit may be disconnected. This can be from faulty wiring or a short out. What can happen is that because the connection is broken it does not matter that you are pressing cool on your thermostat, there is no way for the AC unit to know what you are trying to do. If your unit was the last set to heat, it might then turn the heater on instead of the AC unit. There are a variety of reasons why this happens, but a heating and cooling expert can get everything fixed up for you.

Issue #2: A Faulty Thermostat

While most problems should be diagnosed by an HVAC professional, you can check to see if your thermostat is faulty and needs a quick, easy fix. For example, you could be having all of these heating and cooling issues simply because your thermostat has lost power. Before you call anyone to come in and look at your thermostat, you will want to check that the batteries are still working. If the screen on your thermostat is blank, you may have tripped a breaker, which is also an easy fix. The worst case is that you have a defective thermostat, in which case you will need to get the unit replaced with a new one.

Issue #3: Furnace Electrical Problems

You can have issues with the thermostat and the connection, but sometimes you can have an issue with the furnace itself. The blower inside of your furnace is in charge of circulating air throughout your home even in the summer when you are circulating cold air. A furnace has an incredibly complex network of wires and a circuit board to control its function. If there is a malfunction in these circuit boards, then your heater may start to misfire and will heat your home when it is receiving the instruction to cool.

So What Do You Do?

No matter which one these issues you are experiencing, you should not be handling it yourself unless already work for an HVAC company yourself. If you are having problems with heating and cooling, and need an AC repair, then call the team at Hilltop Plumbing. We do gas fireplace repair, AC repair, and furnace repair and can get your heating and cooling system back up to a

working condition so that you save money and can enjoy your home once again. Do not suffer in the heat this summer, call us today!

Why Does not My AC Unit Come With a Dehumidifier

In the winter, having humidity in your home is a good thing. It helps hold heat and keeps your skin from drying out as well as keeping you healthy. Once summer comes along though, you will want to remove as much humidity as you can from your home. Humid air in the summer works against your air conditioner and keeps your house hot while the unit is trying to cool it off. So why do air conditioners not come with a dehumidifier along with the cooling apparatus?

Air Conditioners Natural Dehumidifying

Air conditions do, automatically, remove humidity from the air. This is because when the air is cooled, moisture is collected as it condenses on the coils. From there, the moisture is drained away. For many climates, this is enough dehumidifying for their home to remain at a comfortable level of humidity. In areas that have relativity high humidity levels, though, an air conditioner may not be enough on its own to keep a home comfortable.

Crank the AC

One way to combat this is to run your air conditioner continuously rather than turn it off when you leave during the day or at night when you are asleep. While this will help keep your home from getting too humid, your heating and cooling costs will be significantly higher than what they otherwise would have been. While it does work, this is not the best option for most homes.

Standalone Dehumidifiers

If you have a smaller space to dehumidify, such as an apartment or condo, then a standalone dehumidifier is a great option to help get your home comfortable again. They are not very costly and can be picked up at many pharmacies and department stores, as well as found online. You can set them up wherever your humidity levels are too high, and they will work well to dehumidify a single room. This is their downside, as you will have to move them from room to room yourself and make sure that you are emptying the reservoir as it fills.

Whole-Home Dehumidifiers

This type of dehumidifier ties into your existing HVAC system. Instead of only dehumidifying a single room in your home at once, a whole-home dehumidifier will pull moisture from every room in your home at once. They work by pulling in the air from the ventilation system and dehumidifying that. They are great because you can have them running when you are not running the air conditioning unit, which will make it easier for your air conditioner to cool down your home when you turn it back on.

Who Needs a Dehumidifier

If your home has a 50%-60% humidity level, then a dehumidifier might be a necessity for you. Before you go out and get a standalone or whole-home dehumidifier though, call the team at Hilltop Plumbing. One of the main causes of too much humidity in the home is having an air conditioning unit that is too large for your home. You may simply need a new unit instead of the addition of a whole-home dehumidifier which can be costly to install.

Contact Hilltop Plumbing today, for all your HVAC needs. We will get you living in comfort in no time!

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