The importance of Monthly/Yearly maintenance
We tend to forget about our Air Conditioning System, all though it is a very important aspect of our families comfort level at home. Just like your automobile it needs basic maintenance done monthly/yearly to keep it running and performing as it was intended to. If forgotten to do so it will take a toll on the systems SEER rating (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s a measurement of an air conditioner’s cooling capacity to power input, or simply, the ratio of cooling produced (in BTUs) divided by the amount of electricity used (in watts). ) which will also affect the systems E.E.R. (is its British thermal units (BTU) rating over its wattage. For example, if a 10,000-BTU air conditioner consumes 1,200 watts, its rating is 8.3 (10,000 BTU/1,200 watts). The higher the rating is, the more efficient the air conditioning unit is.)
How to Calculate Your Equivalent SEER Rating for Your Climate Zone.
As a guideline, the SEER is calculated across a wide temperature range but the average of that range is about 83 degrees. If 83 degrees is the average summer temperature for your area, then an AC unit’s SEER value is spot on for your home (and I envy you). If your area is hotter, however, then subtract 2 points from a unit’s SEER rating for every ten degrees above 83 that is the average temperature for your area. For instance, in Santa Clarita where average summer high temperatures might be 93 degrees. This would mean that an HVAC unit with a SEER rating of SEER-14 would have an equivalent rating of SEER-12 in Santa Clarita.
- 93 – 83 = 10
- +10 = 2 SEER points
- SEER-14 rating – 2 SEER points = SEER-12 rating, or the equivalent SEER rating calculated for your climate area.
First thing you need to do is change your air filter on a regular basis, depending on what type of filter you are using 30 days is a good rule of thumb, unless you have a system with the clean effects on it and it needs to be cleaned every 6 months which gets up to 99% of the dust particles in the air as opposed to your standard filter that does around 1%. Secondly inspect your refrigerant lines outside and make sure your dog is not using your condensing unit for its personal urinal. This can be very bad for your unit, the acid will eat away at the coil and cause your unit to not work as efficiently as it should. Thirdly make sure debris is cleared from around your unit and it has adequate breathing room , do not build a wall around your unit to keep your animals away from it with a few inches on each side, that first off makes it hard for the unit to get fresh air but secondly hard for your service man to get to service when need be which will make it more expensive for you in the long run. Fourthly, and a big one for the people in Arizona is have your coils cleaned once a year, if you have been here during the monsoon season and have seen the haboobs, you would have issues breathing and functioning if you lived outside and breathed all that dust in. So do your system a favor and have your coils cleaned annually. Last but not least check the batteries on your thermostat, it can be an expensive service call to have someone come out and just change the batteries for you!
Have electrical components blown out and make sure connections are solid.
Have your Condensate line cleared out, make sure nothing is clogging it up. That can be a very costly problem if you have a split unit with the air handler in the attic. You should also invest in a safety condensate switch, that will cut your unit off if it detects water in the line sitting so it doesn’t overflow and cause ceiling damage.
If you have a furnace, you should have it checked during the fall before winter hits. Have all the components cleaned and tested. Also, make sure you have a functioning C.O. detector in your home on every floor. An average of 430 people dies every year due to Carbon Monoxide poisoning.
CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTORS PLACEMENT: DO’S
In order to maximize the protection of your home from excess levels of carbon monoxide, place your detectors in all of the following places: On every level of your home. In order to ensure that your home has maximum protection, it’s important to have a CO detector on every floor.
- Five feet from the ground. Carbon monoxide detectors can get the best reading of your home’s air when they are placed five feet from the ground.
- Near every sleeping area. If your CO levels get too high during the nighttime, it’s important that detectors can be heard by everyone sleeping in your home. Place your detectors close enough to every sleeping area so that they can awaken everyone in the case of an emergency.
- Near attached garages. Cars produce carbon monoxide any time they are running. If you have an attached garage, those gasses can quickly spread to the rest of your house. A CO detector near your attached garage will warn you if that becomes a problem.
- Where the manufacturer recommends. Every model of carbon monoxide detector is tested according to manufacturer specifications. It’s important to take those specifications into account when you’re deciding where to place your detectors.
CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTORS PLACEMENT: DON’TS
The following locations can either create a false alarm or avoid your detector from properly identifying the CO levels in your home:
- In close proximity to any fuel-burning appliance.
- In excessively humid areas such as your bathroom.
- In direct sunlight.
- Near any sources of blowing air such as a fan, vent or open window.
HOW CARBON MONOXIDE IS MEASURED
CO is measured in a ratio called ppm (parts per million). Just as 5% means 5 out of a 100, 5 ppm means 5 out of 1 million. So if your home has 10 ppm of carbon monoxide, there are 10 carbon monoxide molecules for every million molecules in the air.
Your HVAC system is the most expensive investment you have in your home, so if you follow these few simple guidelines you can help prolong the life of your system, and your pocketbook. If you have any questions please feel free to call or email us and a Tech will gladly help you out. Join our TLC Club today and SAVE!