8 Top HVAC Maintenance Tips for Pet Owners

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8 Top HVAC Maintenance Tips for Pet Owners

Did you know that your pets can decrease the performance of your HVAC system? Fur, dander, and other tracked-in particles can get inside the system, lowering indoor air quality. Minimize your household’s allergens by applying the following HVAC maintenance tips.

Maintenance Tips for Pet Owners

1. Bathe your pets often.

Dirt and debris cling to your pets’ coats when they come in from outside. This dirt then transfers itself from their fur to your furniture, the air, and eventually the ductwork. Bathing your pets regularly cuts down on the pollutants being brought into the house.

2. Clean your home regularly.

While bathing your pets helps, it won’t eliminate dirt entirely. Dust and mop often to keep floors and furniture from gathering too much dirt.

3. Change your air filter.

Airborne hair and dander tend to accumulate very quickly in standard air filters. A clogged air filter can result in air quality problems. Change your filter regularly to ensure maximum HVAC system efficiency.

4. Deep-clean your carpet.

No matter how often you vacuum or spot-clean your carpet, allergens get trapped deep inside the pile. Eventually, these allergens can be stirred up and become airborne, cycling through your home. Deep-cleaning your carpet every six months eliminates “nesting” and cuts down on airborne particles.

5. Clean your air ducts.

Your air ducts provide the passageway for the air being circulated through your home. Having them professionally cleaned ensures that no hidden dirt is contributing to poor indoor air quality.

6. Seal your air ducts.

Sealing/insulating your air ducts not only prevents bad air from getting in, it encourages good air circulation and distribution.

7. Cover your condenser unit.

Keeping your condenser closed protects it from curious outdoor pets who might damage it.

8. Invest in an air purifier.

Whole house electronic air purifiers can remove up to 99% of airborne particles, reducing health risks and increasing HVAC system efficiency. Air cleaners are a great investment for pet owners in particular.

Don’t forget to schedule your professional tune-up!

As important as it is to clean and maintain things yourself, it’s also important that you hire a licensed technician to check your HVAC system once or twice a year. A professional can catch problems in the system early, saving you larger expenses later.

Your family’s comfort is our priority. Contact the Rheem Pro Partner today for all of your heating and air conditioning repairs and emergencies. We serve homeowners in Colorado and Wyoming and want to see your needs met with the skill, experience, and care of licensed professionals.

6 Common HVAC Installation Mistakes and How They Can Cost You Money

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6 Common HVAC Installation Mistakes and How They Can Cost You Money

To avoid future issues and expenses, it is important that your HVAC system is installed correctly. We have prepared a helpful guide of things to watch out for, including a careless contractor.

What are some common HVAC installation mistakes?

1. Don’t choose the wrong contractor.

The most important thing you can do when installing an HVAC system is to find a great contractor. An inexperienced or lazy contractor can make a great deal of mistakes, costing you both time and money. Take the time to find an honest, reputable technician to successfully install your HVAC system.

2. Avoid installing an incorrectly sized system.

An inexperienced contractor will often install an HVAC system that is either too small or too large for the house in question. A small furnace will result in poor air distribution and an overworked system, while a large furnace will constantly turn on and off. Both will increase your utility bill.

3. Make sure you have properly designed air distribution.

One of the HVAC system’s functions is to distribute heating and cooling evenly throughout the home. If there is a flaw in the distribution design, then the air being circulated is uneven. This results in some rooms being too hot and some being too cold.

4. Don’t waste energy due to faulty ductwork.

Cheap ductwork and poor workmanship leads to future leaks, drafts, and expenses. Your contractor should install ductwork with care.

5. Watch out for an ill-functioning exhaust system.

A proper exhaust system is important for your safety and health. Furnaces produce carbon monoxide, which needs to be vented away from the building. An exhaust that is sized incorrectly or installed poorly can cause a backup.

6. Ensure you have a fully functional drainage system.

Air conditioners produce waste water that must be drained safely. Improper installation leads to water leaks and frozen pipes.

How do these mistakes cost you money?

HVAC installation mistakes can cause you several problems.

  • Shortened HVAC lifespan:
    A system that functions incorrectly is one that functions poorly. Careless mistakes will decrease the lifespan of your HVAC system, resulting in expensive replacement costs.
  • Lower efficiency:
    Installation mistakes can cause your HVAC system to waste energy, lowering efficiency.
  • Decrease in home comfort:
    HVAC installation errors result in uneven heating and cooling, allergens, and poor indoor air quality. All of these things lower the level of comfort in your home.

Your family’s comfort is our priority. Contact the Rheem Pro Partner today for all of your heating and air conditioning repairs and emergencies. We serve homeowners in Colorado and Wyoming and want to see your needs met with the skill, experience, and care of licensed professionals.

Why is My Air Conditioner Freezing Up?

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Why is My Air Conditioner Freezing Up?

It may sound strange that in the heat of summer your air conditioner can actually develop frost but it is possible – and it isn’t good. Understanding the causes, however, can help you prevent your A/C from freezing up. Common culprits include inadequate maintenance, a faulty thermostat and clogged air filters.

What Causes an Air Conditioner to Freeze?

  • Low Refrigerant Levels
    The air conditioner cools the air in your home by drawing the hot air over evaporator coils filled with refrigerant. The coils absorb the heat and transfer it outside. A refrigerant leak results in an insufficient amount of refrigerant to remove the heat from the air. Condensation builds up on the coils and eventually freezes.
  • Poor Airflow / Dirty Air Filters
    While the refrigerant is one part of the equation, the airflow is the other part. Without enough air being drawn over the evaporator coils, there is not enough heat being absorbed, so the coils freeze. Low airflow can result from dirty air filters, blocked air ducts, closed or blocked vents or closed dampers.
  • Dirty Coils
    Dirt on the coils can prevent them from functioning properly. During normal operation, condensation develops and drips off the coils. Dirt prevents the proper heat transfer between the coils and the air. The coils get too cold and freeze.
  • Thermostat Issues
    A poorly functioning thermostat can cause the air conditioner to run all night when it doesn’t need to. In addition to wasting energy and money, this can also cause the air conditioner to freeze.
  • Closed Supply Registers
    People often close the supply registers in unoccupied rooms to save money and energy, but this can actually make your air conditioner less efficient. Having too many closed could even cause the air conditioner to freeze.
  • Insufficient Fan Speed
    The correct balance of airflow and air pressure is necessary for the proper operation of your air conditioner. A  damaged blower fan may not be running at the right speed. The resulting lack of airflow and sufficient heat causes condensation to build up on the coils and freeze.

How to Prevent an Air Conditioner from Freezing Up

  • Schedule an AC tune-up
    Annual maintenance by an HVAC technician is the first and best line of defense for protecting your system.
  • Have the refrigerant level checked
    If you suspect a problem, make sure the refrigerant level is adequate and there are no leaks.
  • Change the filter monthly
    Regularly change the air filter to maintain proper airflow.
  • Keep the supply vents open
    Make sure no more than a quarter of your home’s supply registers are closed in order to prevent freezing.
  • Have the fan speed increased
    Make sure the fan is not worn or damaged.
  • Have the thermostat checked
    Be sure the thermostat is on the correct setting and functioning properly.

If you have any concerns about freezing or other issues with your air conditioner, don’t wait. Contact a Rheem Pro Partner in today! We proudly serve homes throughout Colorado and Wyoming.

7 Ways to Maintain Your Mini-Split Air Conditioner

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7 Ways to Maintain Your Samsung Mini-Split Air Conditioner

If your mini-split air conditioner is not cooling properly there are some steps you can take to troubleshoot the problem before calling for maintenance or repairs.

1. Check Your Settings.

Your AC unit may allow for a variety of settings, so check to make sure something wasn’t inadvertently turned off or changed. The unit works best with the “fresh air” vent setting turned off. This setting is designed to allow your system to pull air from outside, but cooling the hot outdoor air requires your condenser to work harder. When this feature is turned off, the system uses the cooler indoor air, which takes less effort to cool to the desired temperature. Your room will cool faster and with less wear and tear when the fresh air vent is off. Also, check that the unit is set on cool mode and the temperature is set as “low.”

2. Make Sure Your Fan is Turning in the Right Direction.

A ceiling fan can make your HVAC system more efficient all year round, as long as it is turning in the correct direction. In the winter, the blades should rotate clockwise (reverse) as you are looking up. In the summer, they should turn counterclockwise (forward).

3. Make Sure Each Room’s Size is Compatible with Your Mini-Split AC.

The room size must be appropriate for the unit. If the mini-split is too small for a large room, it will not be able to cool the space sufficiently.

4. Check for Leaks.

Every AC is a closed system that draws air over coils filled with refrigerant in order to cool the air. A refrigerant leak is a serious problem that requires an HVAC professional. Running the air conditioner without fixing the leak can permanently damage the equipment.

5. Remove Obstacles and Other Electronics.

Anything that blocks the airflow from the mini-split can prevent the room from cooling properly. If necessary, relocate large objects, such as furniture. Electronics can heat up and make it more difficult to cool the room. Don’t overload the space with heat-generating items such as televisions and computers.

6. Clean the Air Filter.

The air filter protects the evaporator core and prevents the accumulation and buildup of dirt and dust. For best results and to keep your system operating efficiently over its lifetime, clean out the air filters once a month.

7. Make Sure the Voltage is Correct.

The voltage stabilizer output must be above 180V in order for the air conditioner to work normally.

For more information on mini-splits installation, or for any HVAC questions, contact a Rheem Pro Partner today. You can find us throughout Colorado and Wyoming.

The 6 Most Common Air Conditioning Problems in Denver

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The 6 Most Common Air Conditioning Problems in Denver

Now, before the summer heat hits, is a good time to schedule a maintenance appointment and make sure your cooling system is ready for the season. There are many reasons your Denver home’s central air conditioner may need to be looked at by a certified contractor. Knowing the most common air conditioner problems can help you diagnose them, or even better, avoid them. Common problems are faulty wiring, low refrigerant, non-functioning outside fan, a frozen coil and air flow issues.

1. Faulty wiring.

Bad wiring can trip the circuit breaker or keep the unit from getting power. Wiring that is not up to code, or is damaged or poorly installed can not only affect your air conditioner’s performance, it is also a serious safety/fire hazard.

2. Low refrigerant.

Refrigerant is the chemical in your air conditioning system that cools the air. Low refrigerant most often means there is a leak, although it could indicate other problems. Any hint of a leak should be checked by a professional and addressed immediately.

3. Outside fan is not working.

The outside fan moves the heat out of your home. If the fan is not working properly, the heat transfer won’t be successful and could result in the compressor overheating and tripping the safety overload. Even more serious, a fan problem could cause internal damage to the compressor.

4. Outside unit is not working.

If the entire outside unit is not working, the problem could be a lack of power, improper installation or a faulty thermostat.

5. Frozen coil.

This is most commonly a problem with air flow and the culprit is often a dirty air filter. Buildup on the coils or debris blocking the air flow to the system can also cause this. Frost on the inside coil could indicate low refrigerant.

6. Poor air flow.

Change the air filter regularly, every 30-90 days. Keep the coils free of dirt and make sure to maintain a clear area around the outdoor unit that is free from leaves, branches and other debris. Annual maintenance by a professional HVAC technician will keep your system clean and functioning properly.

Preventive maintenance at the start of the season is the best way to avoid serious problems and expensive repairs. Problems like the ones outlined here are easily discovered with a professional inspection and can often be addressed while they are still minor. Look for a NATE-certified technician to promptly diagnose and make any necessary repairs.

The NATE-certified technicians at Rheem Pro Partners can handle all your air conditioning needs. Contact us today in Colorado and Wyoming.

Is a Mini-split Ductless System the Answer to the Hot or Cold Spots in Your Home?

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Is a Mini-split Ductless System the Answer to the Hot or Cold Spots in Your Home?

A mini-split ductless system — a heating and cooling alternative that doesn’t require air ducts — can solve a number of problems, even in a home that has existing HVAC equipment.

What is a Mini-Split Ductless System?

Mini-split ductless systems are designed to heat or cool one specific room or zone, which is why they don’t require ductwork to move air throughout the home. With a multi-split ductless system, multiple indoor units (up to five) can be connected to one outdoor unit. This allows for independent control of the temperature in various areas.

Where are Mini-Split Ductless Systems Typically Used?

Mini-splits are ideal for homes without a central heating and cooling system already in place (so no existing ductwork). They are also a cost-effective solution for room additions or converted living spaces. Connecting a new or renovated space to the home’s central air system can be expensive and may even require an upgrade to handle the additional space.

Advantages of Ductless Mini-Splits

Small size

The indoor unit can be mounted on a wall or ceiling or even in a closet.

Easy installation

Installation requires only a three-inch hole in the wall for the conduit. However, a professional installer is recommended to ensure proper design and installation.

Flexibility and convenience 

Separate controls for each unit make it easy to tailor heating (or cooling) to your family’s specific needs by lowering (or raising) the temperature in rooms that are not being used or to meet the unique requirements of different rooms and people in the household.

Remote control

Remote controls allow you to control the temperature of the room you are in, without having to rely on a central thermostat that controls the entire home.

Doubles as air conditioning and heating system

Ductless mini-split is one system that can provide both heating and cooling with the same equipment.

Sleek, modern look 

The unit can be seamlessly adapted to fit any decor.

Saves money and energy, gain efficiency

Traditional central air systems use ductwork to move the air throughout the home. The heated or cooled air can be wasted through tiny leaks and cracks in the ducts or, if the ducts are dirty, the equipment may require more energy to maintain the comfort level of the home. Mini-splits are high-efficiency systems that eliminate the ductwork, and the flexibility of zone or room control further maximizes their efficiency. As a result, mini-splits are less expensive to operate than central air systems.

No ductwork

Ductwork needs to be maintained and can develp leaks that make the system less efficient.

Safer

Window air conditioners provide inadvertent access to intruders.

Longer lifespans

A well-maintained ductless system can last 20 years, compared to 15 years for a traditional ducted HVAC system.

Tax credits and rebates

Various tax credits, rebates and other incentives may be available for heat pump upgrades.

Ductless Mini-Split Disadvantages

Higher upfront costs than some systems

While they are less expensive to operate, they are more expensive to install.

Some people may not like the look of the indoor units

The units are visible, unlike a furnace and air conditioner that are typically separate from the living areas of the home.

Rheem Pro Partners, in Colorado and Wyoming, can answer all your questions about mini-split ductless systems and help with all your heating and cooling needs. Contact us today for an estimate.

Are Annual Air Conditioner Tune-ups Really Necessary?

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Are Annual Air Conditioner Tune-ups Really Necessary?

Many homeowners wonder if an annual air conditioner tune-up is an unnecessary expense. On the contrary, regular maintenance saves money by preventing costly repairs and extending the system, as well as by maximizing the unit’s efficiency and performance. Learn more about why you should schedule an air conditioner tune-up before the start of the season.

Here are 7 good reasons why you won’t want to skip your annual tune-up.

1. A spring tune-up will give your air conditioner a head start.

Your air conditioner has likely been idle for months. Before you need it every day, it is a good idea to get it checked out — the same way you might have your car serviced before a cross-country trip. It might be just fine, but it makes sense to start the season with your system at peak function and efficiency.

2. Regular maintenance is almost always less costly than repairs.

Preventive maintenance is a cost-effective to way to avoid or minimize repairs and breakdowns. A certified technician can identify and address any issues while they are minor. Often just cleaning and making simple adjustments is enough to prevent the excessive wear-and-tear that would otherwise shorten the life of your air conditioner.

3. Neglecting regular maintenance can void your warranty.

Many manufacturers require annual maintenance to keep the warranty in force.

4. A well-maintained air conditioner lasts longer than one that isn’t.

Maintenance is about more than preventing breakdowns. Keeping your system in good working order extends its useful life. The longer your system works, the longer before you have to replace it.

5. A tune-up can increase efficiency and decrease cooling costs.

Energy costs account for a significant percentage of most household budgets. When your air conditioner is well-maintained it uses less energy and is, therefore, less expensive to operate. Dust and debris build-up, a condensate drain clog, parts that need lubrication and adjustment can all lower efficiency over time. A poorly maintained system has to work harder, and use more energy, to keep your home comfortable.

6. The EPA, Energy Star and U.S. Department of Energy all recommend regular maintenance

A clean, efficient air conditioner is good for your budget and good for the environment.

7. You’ll get faster service with more flexible scheduling in the spring.

Before the start of the season, technicians have greater availability. This means you can schedule your maintenance appointment at your convenience. This may not be the case in the middle of summer if you need a repair. Emergency or after-hours service can also be more costly to obtain.

What to Expect from an Air Conditioner Tune-up:

A thorough inspection and maintenance appointment will take some time. The technician should:

  • Clean the filters, coils and fins
  • Check for the correct amount of refrigerant
  • Test for refrigerant leaks using a leak detector
  • Capture any refrigerant that must be evacuated from the system, instead of illegally releasing it to the atmosphere
  • Check for and seal duct leakage in central systems
  • Measure airflow through the evaporator coil
  • Verify the correct electric control sequence and make sure that the heating system and cooling system cannot operate simultaneously
  • Inspect electric terminals, clean and tighten connections and apply a non-conductive coating if necessary
  • Oil motors and check belts for tightness and wear
  • Check the accuracy of the thermostat.

Contact Rheem Pro Partners today to schedule your air conditioner tune-up in Colorado and Wyoming today and enjoy a worry-free summer!

What are Evaporator and Condenser Coils and How Do They Help Cool Your Home?

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What are Evaporator and Condenser Coils and How Do They Help Cool Your Home?

Running an air conditioner certainly doesn’t require knowledge of how to build or even repair one, but learning how some of the main components work may help you better maintain your system. Here we explain about the air conditioner evaporator coil and air conditioner condenser coil.

Unlike a furnace that produces heat, an air conditioner relies on refrigerant or coolant to remove heat from the air by absorbing it and releasing it outside. The evaporator coil and the condenser coil are integral parts of this process.

What is an Evaporator Coil?

The cooling process begins with the evaporator coil, also known as an evaporator core. It is located inside your home near the air handler (the blower fan) and consists of U-shaped tubes set into panels. The evaporator coil holds the refrigerant and is made of copper, steel or aluminum – materials that easily conduct heat. The panels are positioned to form an “A” and are lined with thin pieces of metal called “fins” which draw the hot air close to the refrigerant to maximize cooling.

The compressor pulls the liquid refrigerant through an expansion valve that relieves the pressure from the refrigerant and quickly cools it, allowing it to absorb heat as it then flows through the tubing in the evaporator coil. The valve controls how much refrigerant flows to the evaporator for overall energy efficiency. The blower fan draws the hot air over the evaporator coil. The refrigerant absorbs the heat, warms and evaporates.

When the water vapor in the warm household air hits the cold evaporator coils, the water vapor condenses into liquid form and drips down into the condensate pan, which drains the water away outdoors. This is how your evaporator coil reduces the humidity in your home.

Evaporator Coil Maintenance

In order to operate efficiently, the evaporator must be clean. Dust can prevent the refrigerant from properly doing its job and cause the system to work harder than necessary to cool your home. Keeping the evaporator free from dust and debris requires regularly changing or cleaning the air filter (every 30-90 days) and scheduling annual maintenance by a certified HVAC technician to thoroughly clean and inspect the system.

Frost on the evaporator coil indicates that the system is dirty and malfunctioning in some way. Do not run an air conditioner if you notice frost because doing so can cause serious damage to the equipment. Evaporator coils can also develop tiny pinhole leaks due to corrosion caused by moisture from condensation mixing with common household chemicals in the air. Oily residue around the evaporator or in the drain pan is a sign your coil is leaky and requires replacement. The chemicals in the air are called volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and come from carpeting, fabrics, cleaners, pressed wood, air fresheners and other similar sources. Maintaining proper ventilation can prevent VOCs from harming your air conditionaer and your health.

What is a Condenser Coil?

The condenser coil is housed in the condenser unit, the portion of the air conditioner system that is outside and houses the compressor, the condenser coil and a fan.

After the refrigerant in the evaporator coil has absorbed the heat from the air in your home, a copper tube transfers it to the condenser unit. The low-pressure, warm refrigerant gas enters the compressor where it is pressurized and turns into a hot, high-pressure gas. From there, the gas flows into the condenser coils and the refrigerant releases most of the heat it has absorbed. The fan on the top of the condenser unit also causes the refrigerant to lose heat by blowing air over the condenser coil. The condenser coil is designed to maximize the time the refrigerant is in contact with the blowing air, so it can release as much heat as possible.

As it cools, the refrigerant changes from a hot gas to a hot liquid. From there, it flows back through a copper tube into your home and into the expansion valve located in the indoor unit near the evaporator coil.

Condenser Coil Maintenance

Similar to the evaporator coil, the condenser coil needs to stay clean. To ensure proper airflow, periodically check for debris, such as leaves and branches, that may be blocking the system. Maintain a clear area around the unit and prevent leaves or other foliage from falling on or near the condenser. Frost or even ice can develop on the condenser unit as a result of dirt in the system. If you notice a buildup of dirt on the condenser coil, use a stiff brush to gently clean the fins. Annual professional maintenance will keep the condenser coil, and the entire condenser unit in good shape.

Importance of regular professional maintenance

It’s important to perform routine A/C maintenance that keeps your evaporator and condenser coils and the rest of your system running efficiently. If something does go wrong, you’ll be better able to troubleshoot the problem. Your knowledge will also help you make smart choices when you’re ready to buy replacement components or upgrade your air conditioner.

For more assistance or to schedule a maintenance appointment, contact Rheem Pro Partners in Colorado and Wyoming today!

8 Tips on How to Check an HVAC System When Buying a Home

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8 Tips on How to Check an HVAC System When Buying a New Home

Whether purchasing a brand new home, or a home that is new to you, making sure you understand your HVAC system from the start will go a long way toward insuring your comfort and safety in your new place. For an older home purchase, getting an HVAC inspection and scheduling maintenance is especially important.

While checking out the bedrooms and the kitchen appliances, be sure to look at the HVAC equipment too. For starters, review the stat sheet on the house you are interested in for a list of the types of HVAC equipment, as well as the fuel used to power them. If that information is missing, be sure to ask.

Here are some tips for evaluating the HVAC equipment in a potential home.

1. Understand what your HVAC system includes.

In addition to the furnace, air conditioner and water heater, the HVAC system might include a programmable thermostat and indoor air quality accessories. Many HVAC systems also include ductwork.

2. Visually inspect the equipment.

Does the equipment appear to be in good condition? Does it make noises that are concerning? Make a note of anything that seems unusual and be sure to have your home inspector check it out. You can also hire an HVAC professional to do an inspection.

3. Ask about the system’s age.

HVAC equipment typically lasts 10 to 15 years. If the equipment is in that range, you may wish to ask for it to be replaced, even if it has been well-maintained. New equipment will have far greater energy efficiency and reliability, making it much more cost effective to operate. The Department of Energy estimates that a 12-year-old central air conditioner that is replaced with a new Energy Star model can reduce air conditioning energy costs by 30 percent.

4. Look for the energy label.

Even if the equipment is newer, look for the yellow energy label for the energy efficiency rating and the estimated operating costs compared to similar equipment. The Energy Star logo indicates greater efficiency than standard equipment. Check the annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) for boilers and furnaces and the seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) rating for air conditioners. When judging these ratings, keep in mind the overall maintenance the equipment has received.

5. Understand the warranty.

Ask about the warranty and any maintenance agreements. Find out if they transfer to the new owners.

6. Ask about past maintenance and repairs.

HVAC technicians sometimes leave behind a dated job ticket when they service an air conditioner, boiler, furnace or heat pump either attached to the unit or posted nearby. This type of information is a record of what has been done to the system. Check for frequent repairs, especially big-ticket items like blower motors or compressors. These could signal trouble that the equipment may need to be replaced soon.

7. Pay attention to the comfort levels in different rooms.

Cold, drafty spots or hot, stuffy spots could indicate a problem such as leaks or poor insulation.

8. Schedule a professional inspection and preventative maintenance.

Have the HVAC system inspected before you close on the house. At the very least, have a certified HVAC technician come out and do a thorough cleaning and maintenance before you move in.

A certified HVAC technician is an invaluable resource when you purchase a home. He or she will explain the system to you, provide recommendations for what you need to do to keep the system running as efficiently as possible, answer any additional questions you have and give you a good idea of how much life is left in the system. Keep in mind, an older system doesn’t necessarily need to be replaced. A well-maintained gas furnace or boiler can last between 15-20 years, while a heat pump or central air conditioner can last 10-15 years.

For your new home HVAC inspection, contact your Rheem Pro Partner in Colorado and Wyoming today!

7 Ways to Extend the Life of Your Air Conditioner

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7 Ways to Extend the Life of Your Air Conditioner

How many years your air conditioner will last depends a lot on how well you take care of it. With a little attention and maintenance, such as regularly changing the air filter and utilizing a programmable thermostat, you can maximize the life of your air conditioning unit. The simple steps listed below will save you money by lowering your energy costs and minimizing repairs as well as by delaying the need for a replacement.

To help extend the life of your air conditioning unit, here are a few things you can do:

1. Schedule regular maintenance

A trained HVAC technician is your first line of defense when it comes to protecting and maintaining your air conditioner. During a service visit before the start of each cooling season, the technician will thoroughly clean the unit and make repairs or adjustments as needed. Doing so will prevent costly repairs down the road, and keep your system running as efficiently as possible for as long as possible.

2. Change the air filter on a regular basis

The air filter keeps your air conditioner (and your home) clean by preventing dust and debris from building up inside and ensuring sufficient airflow. This prevents breakdowns and extends the life of your system. Filters also help your unit operate at maximum efficiency, so your energy bills stay as low as possible. Air filters do get dirty, however, and once that happens they can no longer do their job. Check the filter periodically to make sure it isn’t clogged and change it every 30-60 days as needed to keep your air conditioner running smoothly.

3. Keep the outdoor unit clean and clear of debris

While the air filter keeps the indoor unit clean, keeping the outdoor unit clean is equally important to prevent mechanical problems. The area directly around the unit should be free of any debris, such as leaves, that can get inside. Maintain sufficient clear space around the unit so it can intake and exhaust air properly.  Don’t plant shrubs too close, or stack things on or against the unit.

4. Invest in a programmable thermostat

A programmable thermostat makes it easy to adjust the temperature when you’re away or at night so that your air conditioner is not running when you don’t need it. With preprogrammed or custom settings, you can set it once to match your schedule to save energy, money and wear-and-tear on your air conditioner.

5. Insulate doors and windows

Air leaks that allow warm air in and let cool air escape make your air conditioner work harder than necessary to maintain a comfortable temperature in your home. This wastes energy, raises your energy bills and shortens the life of your system. Check the caulking and weatherstripping around doors and windows every year and repair or replace it as needed.

6. Install blinds and curtains

The sun coming through uncovered windows can quickly heat up your home and keep your air conditioner running. Insulated or even non-insulated blinds and curtains, particularly on windows that get direct sunlight, will help keep your home cool and give your air conditioner a break.

7. Allow air to circulate

Proper airflow is necessary for your air conditioner to work efficiently. Make sure air vents are clear and unobstructed to allow air to circulate freely throughout your home.

For help with all your air conditioning needs, contact Rheem Pro Partner in Colorado and Wyoming today!