Many thousands of years ago, humans learned an important lesson: we could use fire to cook food and keep warm.
Eventually, we learned how to control fire, to bring it indoors. The Roman Empire developed the concept of central heating. The centuries that followed brought the first furnaces, the first radiators and the first electric heaters.
But despite all the advances we’ve made in furnace efficiency, no one has developed a home heating system that will never break down or need to be replaced.
And when breakdowns happen, you’ll be faced with a few different questions: Should I repair my furnace, or replace it? What will it cost? Should I switch from oil to gas? What size do I need?
Below, we’ll explore the answers to these questions so that you have a better idea of what to do if and when your furnace stops working or better yet, if you’re being proactive in your research before the system breaks down.
Meet Nick. He’s a laidback guy, the type of person that tends to just let things go.
The “check engine” light in his car? Things seem to be running fine. Probably nothing to worry about.
The little twinge when he bites down? Everybody gets little pains. Probably nothing to worry about.
The weird noise coming from his central air system? Just normal wear and tear. Probably nothing to worry about.
Of course, this attitude always seems to come back to haunt Nick somehow, whether it’s in the form of a broken-down car, an emergency root canal or an expensive air conditioning service call.
Don’t be like Nick. When you notice these cooling system symptoms, get them checked right away.
There’s a storm coming, so you go into preparation mode. You make sure you have candles and flashlights, put gas in the car, charge your phone.
You might be ready for the storm, but how prepared is your heating and air conditioning system? Before severe weather hits your HVAC system, make sure you’ve followed these precautions.
It’s 2 a.m. You should be asleep, and on any other night, you would be. At the very least, you’d be ready to drift off. But you can’t sleep, because there’s a noise.
It’s a low humming, and you wander the house, trying to trace its source. Did you leave an appliance on? Is someone running the engine of a car outside?
Then you realize: it’s coming from your vents, the sound of a heating and air conditioning system that’s working overtime.
“It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.”
How many times have you heard someone trot out that line on a 90-degree day?
It’s kind of irritating, but it’s also true.
Uncomfortable summer days become unbearable when the humidity levels make it feel like you’re walking through Jell-O.
And as bad as it is dealing with humidity outside your home, indoor humidity can pose an even greater problem. Not only is it hard to sleep in a humid home, you’re also at risk for mold and mildew.
Fortunately, there are some things you can do to control the humidity in your home that don’t just involve turning up your heating and cooling system in Bucks County.
“Big things have small beginnings.”
That’s a line from the movie Lawrence of Arabia. In the context of the film, it means that a tiny group of people can affect great change.
But we began thinking about this quote as we set out to write about ac maintenance. Sometimes, what seems like an insignificant issue can lead to a major air conditioning bill.
To be fair, your HVAC system can lose some efficiency as time goes by. And when you’ve had a summer like we’ve had so far, you might be running your air conditioner more often.
We’ve talked a lot over the past few months about the benefits of air conditioning. It’s a marvelous invention, and we’re saying that not as an AC maintenance company, but just as people who enjoy living in a cool, comfortable home.
But as fantastic as air conditioning is, we can’t take it everywhere. And when you’re spending time outdoors during the dog days of summer, staying cool becomes as a matter of health and safety as well as comfort.
With that in mind, we’ve put together these tips for staying cool in hot weather.
No one likes to think that they’re wasting money.
We all take efforts to get a good deal on the things we purchase, to make wise investments, to live within our means.
But sometimes, we throw money away without even thinking about it and without even leaving the house. Take your air conditioner: any AC repair company will tell you that if you’re not using it efficiently, you’re throwing money away.
Here are 10 ways you might be wasting energy – and thus money – at home.
It’s fair to say that air conditioning has reshaped our world. Think about it:
- It’s changed the way we work. We’re more productive in an air-conditioned building. Before AC came along, businesses would often see work grind to a halt during the summer months as their buildings became too hot for people to do their jobs.
- It’s changed the way we build things. Virtually every home constructed since the 1960s has included central air conditioning.
- It’s made us healthier. For older people, air conditioning is a necessity, not a luxury, during the summer. And the cool, controlled environments in hospitals have allowed researchers to make important advances in medicine.
- It even changed the way we see movies. In the age before home AC units, movie theaters used air conditioning as a way to entice customers. It led Hollywood to start releasing its biggest budget movies during the hot weather months, which is how the summer blockbuster was born.
When you bought your home, you knew the right questions to ask: How much space is there? Is this a quiet neighborhood? What are the schools like?
But when it comes to buying new air conditioners, homeowners often aren’t sure what to ask HVAC companies. If you’re searching for a new AC unit, be sure you pose these questions: