Common HVAC Questions
At 2nd Wind Heating And Air Conditioning we put our customers needs first. If you have a question we want you to ask it. We get better as a company when we listen carefully to our customers needs. Below is a compilation of some of the most common questions we hear. Take a look and if you don’t see you question answered please ask us so we can add it to our knowledge base.
How Can I Increase the Efficiency and Lifetime of My HVAC Unit?
There are many ways to improve efficiency and lifetime of your HVAC unit but the most common problem people have is not changing the air filters enough. Changing your filters frequently can greatly improve the longevity of your HVAC unit. Routine maintenance check-ups are often required for warranty coverage and very beneficial to the lifetime and efficiency of your HVAC unit. Regular maintenance check-ups include cleaning dirt or debris from the unit, checking the unit for leaks, and making sure all electrical connections are connected properly.
Another way to increase efficiency and lifetime of your HVAC unit is to unblock and vacuum your vents. Many homeowners do not realize how much dust is behind there vents which causes a major restriction to air flow. Restricting of air flow from the vents can cause more dust to accumulate in the air ducts and can cause the unit to stall.
How Can I Tell If My Furnace Filter Needs Changing?
There are many ways to tell if a furnace filter needs to be replaced. Often times you can just look at the filter to see if it is visibly dirty. If you can’t see the material of the filter, it should definitely be replaced. Another way to tell if your furnace filter needs to be replaced is the furnace is running more frequently. If your furnace is running more than usual this could be caused by dirty air filters restricting air flow throughout your home.
Another sign to change your furnace air filters is your home is more dusty than usual. This can be caused by dust build up in your air ducts which can clog your air filters. This will decrease the air quality of your home and could lead to allergies. The last clear sign to change your furnace air filters is you can notice an odor or burning smell coming from your furnace unit. This means your furnace system is working to hard to heat your home but all the heat is being trapped because of the dirty air filters. At 2nd Wind, we recommend to all of our customers that they change their furnace air filters regularly and give us a call if they would like us to do it for them.
How Often Should I Change My Air Filter?
One of the most beneficial things you can do to improve the efficiency and lifetime of your HVAC unit is make sure you change the air filters regularly. This will help keep the HVAC system working properly and keep your energy bills low. There are some general recommendations on how often you should change your air filters. At 2nd Wind we recommend you change your air filters every 60-90 days depending on the size of your home, how many residents live there, and if you have pets or not.
If you have pets in your home this will effect how often you need to change your air filters. Pets like cats and dogs will shed fur and bring more dust into your home meaning you will have to change your air filters more frequently, we recommend every 30-45 days. Unfortunately most home owners do not change their air filters regularly which can lead to bad air quality and maintenance problems.
Do I Need A Back Up Generator?
Many home owners around the Columbia area have asked us if they need back up generators. At 2nd Wind we believe in being safe rather than sorry. In South Carolina we all know how bad severe storms can be. These storms can cause major power outages and sometimes flooding. Back up generators can provide power for days after a power outage and keep important systems and appliances running in your home.
If you do not want to install a permanent back up generator, portable generators are also a great investment. With changing weather conditions each year it is very beneficial to be prepared for anything. We highly recommend having a back up generator if you are elderly or have infants living in your home. Also, due to COVID-19 we realize many people have converted to working from home, a back up generator would be a a great investment to ensure you have no loss of income due to a power outage.
How Often Should I Have My HVAC Unit Serviced?
Many homeowners make the fatal mistake of only having their HVAC system serviced when something finally goes wrong. This means the unit could have stalled, started making loud noises, or just stopped working. These problems can be fixed with routine service and maintenance check ups. At 2nd Wind we recommend to our customers that their HVAC unit be serviced at least twice a year. HVAC services include cleaning the unit, checking all connections, and looking for air or water leaks coming from the unit.
Having your HVAC unit serviced twice a year will help to maintain optimum efficiency and catch early warning signs of a breakdown before it happens. It does not matter how big your HVAC unit is, regular services are required to maintain a cost effective and energy efficient HVAC system.
What Size HVAC System Do I Need?
One of the most common questions we receive is what size HVAC unit should I get and should I upgrade my HVAC unit. The answer to this question varies based on the size of your home, the status of your current HVAC system, and how many rooms you want to be controlled by the HVAC unit. A common misconception is that bigger is better when it comes to HVAC systems for your home. This could not be further from the truth. If you have an HVAC system that is to large for your home it will cool it to quickly, this will leave behind moisture that could turn to mold.
Another common problem for HVAC units that are to large is they tend to short-cycle. This means the unit will be constantly starting and stopping which will decrease the life of the HVAC system and increase the price of your electricity bills. We highly recommend contacting one of our 2nd Wind heating and air conditioning professionals to ensure you get the right HVAC system for your home.
Why Do I Need An HVAC Real Estate Inspection?
HVAC Real Estate Inspections are done for the sale of the property. They include checking the HVAC system for proper maintenance, faulty parts, crushed ductwork that contributes to improper operation.
Our goal at 2nd Wind is to provide potential buyers or sellers with valuable information to help insure that the HVAC unit is mechanically operating properly in both heating and cooling modes. We will perform this function with the professionalism and diplomacy required to minimize inconvenience and financial burden. After all, we understand that a home is a critical investment. However, for 2nd Wind, it is our goal and professional responsibility to thoroughly go over the equipment and render a completely unbiased inspection with any recommendations.
How do I select the right HVAC contractor?
The right HVAC contractor is not always the lowest priced contractor. We have all selected a contractor to do work at our home that was the best price and after the work was done, we were not happy with the result. Most of the time we get what we pay for, a cheaper price and a lower quality of work.
What qualifications are important to select the right HVAC Contractor?
When selecting an HVAC contractor there are many things to consider. You must look at the scope of work to be done and find out if the contractor you are looking to hire has the following qualifications:
- a business license,
- appropriate permits with the local municipality,
- drug test their employees, and
- run criminal background and sexual predator checks on employees.