How do I Maximize the Comfort & Efficiency of My HVAC System in Asheville, NC?

Home ownership requires a lot of responsibility. Monitoring, overseeing, and maintaining many of the mechanical elements of your home are crucial to keeping the home in good condition. HVAC, which means “heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning,” is the equipment responsible for maintaining a comfortable temperature in your home. It is also what preserves optimal air quality and energy efficiency.

Here are a few tips on how to maximize the comfort and efficiency of your HVAC system, regardless of the equipment’s age.

Attention Asheville Homeowners, Please Change Your Filters

Air filters are easy for homeowners to monitor and change. The type of filtration you have determines how often the filters should be replaced. Some filters must be changed monthly. Some higher-end air filtration systems can go six-months before they need to be replaced. Every homeowner should know the location and what type of filters they have protecting their HVAC system.

HVAC Maintenance is a Must!

A local professional service contractor like American Air Heating & Cooling should inspect your HVAC system twice a year, once in the cooling season and again in the heating season.

This is important to ensure your system is operating at its optimal level for the appropriate season’s temperatures. In the fall or winter, technicians should inspect and service your furnace or heater. In the spring or summer, they return to concentrate on your air-conditioner. Most professional companies offer incentives for homeowners to sign up as a maintenance agreement customer. Benefits can include priority service and discounts on repairs.

Close your curtains or blinds during the day

During the summer months, closing the curtains can reduce some of the ambient heat load on your home.

The opposite happens during the winter; and by keeping your blinds open, you can take advantage of the sun’s warming rays.

The blinds keep the warm air inside the home, as opposed to “leaking” out through the windows.

Make sure your vents and returns are not obstructed

If you have a forced air heating and cooling system, your air vents are strategically place throughout your home. These can be located on the wall, ceiling, or in the floor. It is important NOT to cover up these air vents. Blocking the vents restricts the air flow and will cause your furnace or air-conditioner to work harder to keep your home comfortable. This decreases the efficiency of your system, and it will cost you more to operate.

Clear obstructions around your outdoor unit

It is important to keep the area surrounding the outdoor section of your HVAC system clear of any obstructions. Shrubbery and plants allow air to pass through their foliage; however, make sure they are not in too close a proximity to your outdoor unit.

One foot of clearance around your outdoor condenser should be sufficient, but the more clearance you have the better. Because air is drawn into the air-conditioner, you will want to make sure any walls are at least 16-18 inches away from the unit. Warm air is discharged upwards from the unit, therefore, clearance above the unit is important. Blockage of air can result in damage to the system’s compressor and other components.

If you have a heat pump system; it is not only important to keep the area around the unit clear in the summer; but as well as the winter. You must keep the accumulation of snow or ice away from the outdoor heat pump. It can cause the outdoor unit to stop working. If you are expecting snow, make sure to remove the snow on and around the heat pump.

Make sure your system is turned off before working near it; this can be accomplished by turn the system off at the thermostat.  An extra measure of safety would be to pull the disconnect located at the outdoor unit.

If you follow these basic tips, you will increase the efficiency of your HVAC equipment and maintain a comfortable temperature no matter what time of year.

Your local trusted HVAC experts at American Air Heating & Cooling are here to help the Asheville residents!  Contact us Now!

air conditioner repair, replacement and maintenance Asheville NC

The Impact of the Phase-Out of R-22 on Your Aging HVAC System in Western NC

R22 refrigerant is a commonly used refrigerant in domestic air conditioners. It is a compound that includes chlorine and fluorine, which can potentially deplete the ozone layer.  This can lead to enhancing the greenhouse effect, which has studies showing negative effects on our environment.

In 1987, an international treaty called the Montreal Protocol was universally ratified and was designed to phase out substances that contributed to ozone depletion. The United States was a party to this treaty, so the EPA decided to implement a plan to phase out R22. The date was set for January 2020, where all R22 was banned (meaning it was illegal to import or manufacture R22). 

Prior to this date, there were exceptions for R22. The EPA began scaling back and limiting the production. It could be used to service existing air conditioners that had leaks in their refrigerant system. Now; that it is no longer in production, the cost of R22 continues to rise. Some refrigerant manufacturers have introduced products to act as a replacement for R22, such as M099 (R438a). Please be very careful with these products, because they can lead to refrigerant contamination. Not all equipment manufacturers approve this product as a direct replacement, so your best bet is to consult your local servicing HVAC contractor for the facts. The experts at American Air Heating & Cooling can help.

Increased Cost to Repair R22 Systems in Canton and Waynesville

Homeowners and business owners alike that have older air conditioners, may be faced with a difficult decision when a repair is required for your system. Depending upon the repair, it may make sense to repair your system versus replacing it. Your local heating and air company; American Air Heating & Cooling, can provide you with the best solution. While it may be tempting to keep your unit as long as possible; you most certainly will pay more for repairs going forward. This is due to the increased cost of R22 and the availability of R22 refrigerant.

Be Proactive or Wait in Candler, NC?

Now that it is illegal to manufacture or import new R22, you really need the weigh the options for your aging air conditioner. Have a discussion with your servicing HVAC company and consider your options. They are the experts and can help you make the best decision. It is better to be proactive now. If you wait to the dead of summer; you may be faced with large repair bills and an uncomfortable home or office. Here are the things to discuss and consider with your service provider:

  • Age of your system
  • Recent Repairs
  • Energy Costs
  • Potential utility or manufacturer rebates on a new system
  • Energy Savings
  • Better Warranty

Being proactive about repairs or replacement for your home’s most valuable appliance is never a bad thing.  While your business or home still has air conditioning, you can take your time choosing a new system that fits your needs and budget. Research your cooling needs and speak to your professional at American Air Heating & Cooling about which unit will be right for you. 

If you wait to replace it, then you may find yourself in the middle of summer without air conditioning. You should consider these factors if you choose to wait for your current air conditioner fails:

  • Contractors are very busy in the summer, you may have to wait
  • Availability of the equipment
  • Installation time (which means days without air conditioning)
  • You may have to make a quicker decision than you would like

Either way, get your research done and talk to your local professional at American Air about your next steps.

Use a fan to stay cool when your AC goes out in Canton NC

Ways to Stay Cool When Your Air Conditioner Goes Down in Western NC

Home ownership is one of the most rewarding milestones of life. But, it can be expensive, time-consuming, and responsibility-laden.  The endless list of chores can seem overwhelming. Inevitably, something is forgotten and something breaks down. It happens to all of us. Unfortunately, your air conditioner seems to break down at the most inappropriate time – right in the middle of summer and on the hottest day of the year.  Heating and air conditioning companies are busy, and you may not be able to have your A/C serviced for a few days. Is it just bad luck? Is your air conditioner out to get you? Of course it’s not! Air conditioners are most likely to stop working when they’re working the hardest, which is when you need them the most! What can you do to keep cool when your air conditioner goes out?  You’re in luck American Air Heating & Cooling has some great tips for you!

Cool Yourself Down in Waynesville

When the day comes and your air conditioner stops working, first think of all the ways you can cool yourself down rather than your home. Wear lightweight and loose-fitting clothing and drink plenty of water. You can put a towel under cold water, wring it out, and then wrap it around your neck. Wear it around your neck for a while. If you’d rather put an ice pack around your neck, you’ll probably want to wrap it in a washcloth or towel so it’s not to cold on your skin.

Use Fans in your Canton home

Turn on your ceiling fans and place portable fans throughout the house. A nice breeze can go a long way in cooling you off, but please make your ceiling fan is turning in the counterclockwise direction during summer.

Avoid Heat-Generating Appliances

The oven, dryer, and dishwasher create a lot of heat that warms your house every time you use them. Use your grill for cooking or think of eating foods that are served cold. A cool salad is much better than a hot bowl of soup when you’re hot. Instead of using the dryer or dishwasher, air-dry both your laundry and your dishes.

Keep Out the Sun and Humidity

Close your windows and blinds. Direct sunlight is a great way to heat up your home, and this is the last thing you want to do when the A/C is out. You may be tempted to open windows to let in some fresh air, but you’ll also be letting in the wet humidity of summer.  If the nights are cooler and drier, go ahead and open the windows but only at night.

Consider Buying or Renting a Portable A/C Unit

If you know you might be without air conditioning for a few days, consider purchasing or renting a portable air conditioning unit. They range in price depending on their size and capabilities.  If you’re looking for an inexpensive fix, you could purchase a mini portable air unit that cools your personal space. It may help you get a better night’s sleep.

Keep up the Regular Maintenance on your A/C in Candler, NC

Keep to a regular maintenance schedule. It’s the best prevention for costly repairs and unexpected replacements. Make sure your air conditioner is serviced every year, especially before the hot weather gets here. Your A/C is just like your car. You wouldn’t drive your car 20,000 miles without servicing it, so don’t ask your air conditioner to do the same thing this summer. So contact us now to schedule. Your highly-trained technician from American Air Heating & Cooling is trained to find the problem before it ever becomes a problem.

aging air conditioner in Asheville

Signs it’s Time to Replace Your Air Conditioner in Asheville, NC

When is the right time to replace an air conditioner? Air conditioners are an expensive investment and you probably don’t want to purchase a new unit until necessary, but you don’t want to be caught in a hot summer in the greater Asheville area without one. Look for the following signs that it’s time to replace your air conditioner.

Your air conditioner needs frequent repairs

When your air conditioner needs costly repairs, you are better off replacing the unit with a newer model. Schedule an appointment with one of American Air’s comfort consultants to discuss your options. Our trusted professionals can help you determine whether it’s time to replace or repair.

Your air conditioner is more than 15 years old

Air conditioners have an average lifespan of twelve to fifteen years. After about ten years, you should start keeping an eye on the frequency of repairs and the air conditioner’s efficiency.
Technology has advanced over the years and new systems are far more efficient than older models. Today’s new models not only provide greater energy efficiency, they provide much improved comfort. Many air conditioners today provide multi-stage cooling, variable speed motors, and are extremely quieter than your current systems. Your air conditioner should have a SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficient Ratio) rating of at least 14. These models are 37% more efficient than models with a SEER of 10.

Your utility bills are on the rise

Another sign your unit isn’t working properly is when your electricity bill is higher than it should be. The harder your air conditioner works, the more it will cost you. Pay attention to your monthly statements, the previous month’s weather, and last month’s activities that effect power usage. It’s a good chance your air conditioner is the reason for the increase in your electric bill, even if you haven’t had frequent repairs.

Replacing your air conditioner is one of the best ways to save money and reduce frustration, during the summer months. Call American Air Heating and Cooling at (828)633-4460 today, and we’ll send out one of our professionals to discuss options with you.

prevent-mold-growth-american-air-candler-nc

How to Prevent Mold Growth This Spring in The High Country

Preventing Mold Growth

Once the temperatures begin to rise this spring in the Asheville area, so will the humidity. Unfortunately, this can often lead to mold and mildew growth in your home. Follow these four tips from American Air to prevent mold growth this spring in Candler, NC.

Spring Maintenance for your Heating & Cooling system

The first thing you should do to prevent mold growth in your home is to schedule HVAC maintenance from American Air. Our expert HVAC technicians will clean your entire system and make sure that there are no potential damages or problems that could contribute to mold in your home. Call or click to schedule your preventative maintenance today!

Set humidity on thermostat

The more humid your home is, the more ideal of an environment it creates for mold to thrive in. Use the humidity controls on your thermostat to lower the humidity in your home and prevent mold growth. Ideally, the relative humidity in your home should be somewhere around 50%, and not exceed 60%.

Prevent mold growth in your home with a dehumidifier

You can also alter the relative humidity in your home with a dehumidifier. This is especially helpful if you notice problematic mold and mildew concentrated in a particular room or area of your home. Use a dehumidifier to prevent mold growth and reduce allergy symptoms this spring in Asheville, NC.

Seal doors and windows this spring in the High Country

A well maintained and properly operated air conditioner will do most of the work to prevent mold growth in your home this spring in Candler. However, if your home is open to the elements, your A/C unit won’t be able to fight off mold and mildew for long. Cracks and gaps around windows and door frames allow outside humidity to enter your home, creating a safe haven for mold to spread. Seal your home with caulk and weatherstripping to keep mold out and lower your energy bills.

Call American Air or click here to schedule your A/C maintenance!

828-633-4460

zoned HVAC

Zoned HVAC Benefits This Winter in Candler, NC

HVAC Zoning Benefits – Candler, NC

Does your heating system have zoning capabilities? If not, you’re missing out on a more comfortable home this winter in the Asheville area. American Air has a few reasons why you should upgrade to a zoned HVAC system.

Zoned HVAC: What is it?

Traditional heating systems work by delivering equal heat to all areas of the home through the ductwork. In contrast, HVAC zoning breaks the areas of your home up into different sections, or zones. For instance, the upstairs bedrooms, living room and basement can all be set as individual zones. This allows you to independently control the temperature and humidity levels of each individual area.

HVAC zoning increases comfort in Candler, NC

A zoned HVAC system has several advantages compared to traditional units. One of the greatest benefits is increased comfort levels for you and your family. Zoning allows different family members to customize conditions to their liking, keeping everyone happy this winter. It’s also more efficient, so heat and humidity levels are more consistent.

Zoned HVAC from American Air Heating & Cooling saves money

In addition to better comfort, efficiency will help you save money this winter. Zoned HVAC systems only heat the areas of the home that need it, so energy isn’t wasted heating unused rooms. This results in significant savings on those winter energy bills that seem to be higher every year. With a zoned HVAC system, you’ll have affordable and effective heating for years to come. You’ll also enjoy the same types of savings in the summer when the A/C bill goes through the roof.

If you have been unsatisfied with your home’s comfort levels, or if your heating bills never seem to stop rising, HVAC zoning may just be right for you. Call American Air Heating & Cooling or click here to upgrade to a zoned HVAC system today!

828-633-4460