What Does an Air Conditioner Tune-up or Clean-n-Check Entail?

Air Conditioning Tune-Up - Clean-n-Check - Washington MOYearly maintenance is an important factor in maintaining your system efficiency and improving long term reliability. A properly maintained system can operate up to 10% more efficiently than a dirty and neglected system.

A common comparison to your heating and cooling system is your automobile. Routine oil changes, tire rotations, checking fluids, and changing filters reduces break downs and provides you with a more reliable car. The same is true for your cooling system. Annual maintenance can eliminate unplanned breakdowns, and provide for additional years of reliable service. Regular maintenance can correct many minor problems before they grow into costly emergencies. Continue reading

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Why Would I Consider a Whole Home Dehumidifier?

Considering a Whole Home Dehumidifier - Jim's Heating and Cooling, Washington, MO

Today’s homes are built for energy efficiency. In these tighter environments, there is moisture and VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). These homes are given more efficient air conditioners (single speed) that cool the home quickly and do so while using less energy than older systems. However, systems that run less also remove less humidity. In order to get better dehumidification, we find ourselves “over cooling” our homes.

So many times, air conditioning is not the total answer to making your home healthier and more comfortable. You want to maintain a relative humidity between 45-55% in the summertime. Every installation is different, and many times a whole house dehumidifier is the only solution. You can try to use portable dehumidifiers, however these solutions only treat just a single room and portable dehumidifiers require you to do maintenance and empty the water reservoir regularly. Continue reading

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What is Fresh Air Ventilation?

What is Fresh Air Ventilation? - Jim's Heating and Cooling, Washington, MO

Today’s homes are tightly sealed and built with energy efficiency in mind. This type of construction is great for keeping your hot and cool air from seeping out of the house, but it traps all types of harmful pollutants and odors in your house that you may not realize. Fresh air ventilation is needed to help keep those harmful pollutants out of your home.

Proper ventilation can make your home healthier and more comfortable. When your heating and cooling system runs, it circulates all of the chemicals and pet odors as well; trapped air contains harmful chemicals that can threaten your family’s health. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the concentration of pollutants can be up to 10 times greater inside your home than outside. Continue reading

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Why Do I Need to Consider a Higher Efficiency System?

Why Do I Need to Consider a Higher Efficiency System? - Jim's Heating and Cooling

There are many benefits to consider when determining whether you should do an upgrade to your current heating and cooling system. The average life expectancy of a heating and cooling system is 15 to 20 years. However, as your system becomes older and service repairs are more frequent and expensive, evaluating the timeline for replacing becomes more cost effective. Continue reading

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You Can Save Money Upgrading Your AC Systems

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Many people wait until they are in need of a major repair before considering the option to upgrade their heating and cooling system. It is important to remember that when the age of the HVAC equipment in your home is over 10 years and the warranty period has expired; the option for replacing the system should be considered along with the repair alternative. Continue reading

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What Are My Choices in a Thermostat?

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The first question you have to ask yourself with selecting from the multiple thermostat options is – what type of system do I have? Below is a list of the different systems most homes have.

Single Stage

Meaning you have a gas, oil or electric furnace with an air conditioner. The gas furnace can be either natural or propane. Continue reading

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How to Choose a Heating and Cooling Contractor

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There is wide variety of quality contractors in the marketplace for you to choose from when selecting a heating and cooling expert. The phrase “Buyer beware” is appropriate for this very situation. Directories like Angie’s List and Yelp that allow customers to review contractors are becoming increasingly popular and with good reason. The goal of these sites is to assist you in selecting a quality contractor. Continue reading

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Why Do I Need a Humidifier in My Home?

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Humidifiers, when used in your home, solve multiple problems that can arise. The largest issue that arises is dry air. The specific issues with dry air in a home are numerous with the largest one being health reasons. You will also find structural damage and increase utility bills when dry air is prevalent.

Your Health
Health reasons are one of the large focus points for needing a humidifier. Low humidity can make it easier to catch and transmit cold and flu viruses. Cold dry air can aggravate asthma and static shock contributes to dry itchy skin. Continue reading

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Should I Replace My Furnace Today?

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The Department of Energy has the authority to develop minimum efficiency standards, and can establish Regional Standards as a component of these regulatory changes. The northern states will be impacted by the changes that the DOE sets forth. In fact, the number of heating hours is more than doubled the cooling hours in this region.

Because of these standards, we recommend that you migrate your system to the 90%-efficient furnaces. These furnaces are labeled as a “condensing furnaces”. However, before you jump in and purchase a new condensing furnace, there are several items to consider before you replace your non-condensing furnace with the condensing type.

You should consider the following and how it may impact you:

1. Equipment Space Constraints
Can the new furnace fit in the old one’s spot? How big is the new furnace going to be?

2. Exhaust Venting Requirements
What all do you need to have to make the new one work? What’s the cost comparison?

3. Condensate Disposal
Do I have a means to eliminate the condensation produced by my new condensing furnace? Do I need to call my local HVAC expert for information?

The space requirements do vary with this equipment change but the real focus is on the exhaust venting requirements. These may be the most difficult to accommodate in your home or office. It is possible that you may need to give up living space or modifying ceilings and soffits in order to complete the installation of the new furnace.

These complications will need to be reviewed and may provide for additional costs than the single cost of the furnace. The good news is that your energy usage will be less! You may also consider a Hybrid option, which could save you additional operating costs depending on your utility rates for natural gas, propane and electric. In many areas your Electric Utility or Co-op may have additional incentives or rebates available. Your heating and cooling professional can help you evaluate your alternatives to provide you the best option at the best value.

If you need a heating and cooling professional in the Washington, Missouri call Jim’s Heating and Cooling at 636-239-3581 or visit us online at www.JimsHeatingandCooling.com.

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Why Should I Consider a Clean & Check For My Heating and Cooling System?

We get this question asked by many friends, customers, and associates. Especially after this extreme heat this year, many people have indicated that next time they want to get their heating and cooling system checked out before the season starts. But, what do I look for? And how do I know I'm not getting "ripped off"?

First let's talk about the benefits of a "Clean & Check" or Maintenance Agreement program. Here are a few of the key benefits that you will receive from your investment each season:

1.) A proper cleaning of your unit will improve efficency and make sure your system is operating as it was design. Dirty systems may be operating several efficiency points below the original manufacturer's specifications.
2.) Maintaining a clean filter is one of the most important items you can do. It keeps your system running efficiently. However, a clean and properly maintained filter improves air flow which contributes not only to system performance but also to your comfort. Dirt will reduce the the life of your system.
3.) Systematic maintenance corrects minor problems before they grow into costly emergencies, and extends the life of your system.
4.) Many companies, like ours, offer priority service if you participate on their Maintence Plans.
5.) Also, most companies offer discounts on any repairs if you are on a Maintenance Plan with their company.

You should remember a Maintenance Plan is an annual agreement, and a "Clean & Check" is a one time event for each time you authorize it.

So, how do you know whether I am are getting a good deal and a reputable contractor? Let's look at pricing first. Many contractors will discount their plans through out the year. However, if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. When a contractor offers a rate like $29.95, you need to remember "buyer beware". This level of pricing means you have a contractor that may purposely try to find a repair to increase the invoice even if it is not really needed. For example, they will add a pound or two of refrigerant to get the price up. Look for a price around $75 to $90. You should be able to get  complete service at a good value in that price range. Note, if you have multiple systems, and/or additional system features like humidifiers, air cleaners, and UV lights, the price will be greater based on the number of sytems and the components that are included.

Look for a referral from a neighbor or friend. Ask them if they thought the contractor performed a detailed inspection of the unit. Ask them if they were charged any additional fees during the maintenance service. Did they leave a check list of items performed? If they cut corners here, they have probably cut corners in their service.

 

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