Will Your Furnace Last Through the Winter?

With winter in full effect  here in Atlanta, you’re probably starting to rely on your heating system full-time to keep you comfortable at home. It’s no secret that you use your heating system the most during winter; but have you thought about the stress that full-time use for months on end could put on your heating system? Even if your furnace seemed to be functioning well when you first turned it on this year, that doesn’t mean it’s going to last you all season.

Schedule Heating Maintenance to Keep Your Furnace Running

The most important thing you can do is schedule heating maintenance for your furnace. During a service visit, a heating professional will clean your furnace, lubricate all moving parts, and optimize it for peak performance all winter long. Your heating professional will also catch any minor repairs that may be needed before they escalate into larger issues. Regular maintenance for your heating system is the key to extending the life of your furnace.

Maintain Your Furnace Between Service Visits

In addition to scheduling furnace maintenance, there are a few simple measures you can take to help extend the life of your furnace. First, be sure to check your furnace’s air filter every month. Your heating professional will take care of this during your annual furnace tune-up, but it’s important to check it in the months between visits, as most filters need to be cleaned or replaced every one to three months. Some units have an indicator light that tells you when your furnace’s air filter is starting to get clogged.

Old Furnace? Consider Replacing Your Unit

If your furnace is malfunctioning, inefficient, or eight to ten years old, it might be time for a replacement. A new, energy efficient furnace will keep your home more comfortable, all while consuming less energy. Trane furnaces have especially high efficiency ratings and come with features like built-in intelligence to make maintenance a cinch. Our financing options make upgrading your furnace more affordable than ever.

Not sure if your furnace will make it through the winter? Contact us or call (770) 942-2873 today to talk to a heating specialist!

Is Your Air Conditioner Short Cycling?

Guess what? It is still hot and humid and it is also still humid and hot. And we are not sure when it will stop being hot and humid or if you prefer, humid and hot. So let’s talk about a common air conditioner problem you may be experiencing during these dog days of summer – short cycling. Cycling is a normal operational process for HVAC systems. Typically, your system should have 2-3 cooling cycles within an hour on a moderate summer day. If your system is cycling inconsistently in rapid successions, then you have a short cycling problem. Short cycling not only harms the energy efficiency of your system, it puts excess wear on your equipment which can lead to frequent breakdowns and repairs. Let’s figure out what may be causing this issue:

  • Oversized Unit – Air conditioners must be sized properly for each home – not too small, not too large – they have to be “just right”. It is possible that the air conditioning system in your home is simply too large for the space it is supposed to cool. It may be cooling your home too quickly causing short cycles that will prematurely wear down your equipment.
  • Clogged Air Filter –  Dirty filters result in insufficient air flow through your system. This will cause your system to work much harder to compensate for the loss of airflow. Filters need to be replaced at least quarterly, but check it monthly and if it looks dirty or clogged go ahead and change it. It is a small price to pay for big savings down the road.
  • Low Refrigerant – Contrary to popular belief, your system does not “use up” refrigerant like a car uses gasoline. If you have low refrigerant, it usually means you have a leak. This can put excess stress on your system causing it to short cycle.

Proper maintenance of your system is the best way to prevent short cycling from occurring. If you are experiencing problems or if you need to schedule maintenance, call the experts at Anchor Heating & Air – 770-942-2873.

Your August Home Checklist

August is a month of transitions. Your household may be transitioning into a new school year, from summer to fall activities or from hot weather to milder temperatures – hopefully! Use this time of transition to mark a few of these items off of your home checklist:

  • Tidy Your Mudroom or Drop Zone: Especially if you have kids in the house, take this opportunity to get a busy entryway under control. Clear the clutter, clean rugs and floors, wipe down shelving and put back only the essentials.
  • Prepare for Your Fall Wardrobe: Evaluate your summer clothing to determine what pieces need to be donated and what can pieces can transition into Fall. Set aside anything that needs repairs or that needs to make a trip to the cleaners before it is stored or pushed back until next summer. Preview your current fall wardrobe and donate anything that you no longer like or no longer fits. Make a list of any items you need to shop for before the cool weather comes.
  • Refresh/Restock the Pantry: Toss out anything that is out of date. Donate in date items that you probably won’t be using to a food pantry. Organize and take stock of your inventory. Think about the type of items you like to cook during cool weather and begin a list for those staples.
  • Deep Clean Your Kitchen: This is often the most used area of the home, therefore it needs a deep clean more often. Sorry, it’s just the way the cookie crumbles (and makes a mess and you have to clean it up).
  • Put Away Summer Gear:  Inspect your summer gear for damage and clean it before storing it away until next year. Make note of any items that need to be replaced because you may find them at the end-of-season sales.
  • HVAC Maintenance: During the little lull between the dog hot days of summer and the frigid cold days of winter is the time to schedule your HVAC maintenance. Your system works hard to keep you cool all summer, it may need a little TLC from your HVAC technician after all that hard work. Another reason to schedule maintenance during this in between time is to ensure your heating system will be ready for the first cold snap. Sometimes the temperatures drop drastically and you don’t want to turn the heat on only to discover that it isn’t working!

Simply call Anchor at 770-942-2873 to schedule your maintenance appointment. We will help you maximize efficiency, energy savings, and unit life.

Extend the Life of Your HVAC Unit

Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) units can be costly to repair and even more expensive to replace. So today we share some tips that will hopefully extend your HVAC unit beyond the average lifespan.

  • Air Flow: HVAC units need room to breathe. Keep the area around the unit free of storage and clutter. Remove debris such as leaves, pollen, and twigs from the top and sides of outdoor air-conditioning units and heat pumps. Also, keeping the unit and the vents free of dust will keep the unit cooler and clog-free.
  • Replace Filters: I know we sound like a broken record stuck on the words “replace filters”, but that is because of the utter importance of this task to the efficiency and life of your system! Filters need to be replaced at least quarterly, but check it monthly and if it looks dirty or clogged go ahead and change it. It is a small price to pay for big savings down the road.
  • Thermostat Setting: If the temperature outside is not too extreme, keep the thermostat set a couple of degrees higher or lower. By doing this, you will save your unit from working too hard and as an added bonus, reduce your utility bill.
  • Semi-Annual Maintenance: Fall and spring, ahead of each peak season, are an ideal time to have an HVAC contractor inspect and do maintenance on your system. Maintenance allows us to make minor repairs and save your heating and air conditioning equipment from major blowouts, which can cost big money.

One other great tip we wanted to share is to schedule your filter replacements and semi-annual maintenance through your online calendar or smartphone calendar. Adding a recurring event on electronic devices is easier than ever and a great way to keep on top of maintenance.

Each one of the above tips can extend the life of your HVAC unit, saving you money over the life of the unit and on your utility bills. Anchor Heating and Air would love to help you with this goal. Read here for more information on the service plans that we offer.

Questions to Ask Before Purchasing a New HVAC System

Beyond your mortgage, utility bills are the among the highest costs of operating a household. As you know, your HVAC system can constitute a large portion of your utilities. So buying a central heating and cooling system could be one the largest investments you’ll make in terms of upfront investment and future utility savings that stem from an updated system. Whether you are buying a new HVAC system to preemptively improve energy-efficiency or replacing a broken system, we have some questions for you to ask first:

  • What size or capacity system do I need to comfortably heat and cool my home?
  • What is the condition of my current ductwork? Can it be used with a new system?
  • What brands do you offer and why do you prefer those brands?
  • Can you tell me more about the SEER rating and the energy efficiency of the system?
  • What kind of guarantee do you make on the installation and on the unit itself?
  • How long will the installation take from start to finish?
  • Do you handle the removal of the old system and the clean-up at completion?
  • Do you handle all of the necessary permits and approvals with the local authorities?
  • Can I see proof that you are licensed, bonded and insured?
  • Can I get a written estimate including all the terms and conditions?
  • What are your payment options?

A high-quality, efficient system that is properly installed can provide years of comfort for your home, while keeping your utility bills in check. Being prepared with the right questions will allow you to make the most informed decision when you purchase a new HVAC system. An HVAC specialist from Anchor will evaluate your needs, keep you informed at every stage of the project and install your system correctly. We will also not hesitate to provide references and will gladly answer any of the above questions for you. Call us today, 770-942-2873.