Category Archives: Heating

Do You Need to Replace Your Furnace and Air Conditioner at the Same Time?

Many of our customers ask us if they should replace their furnace and air conditioner at the same time. While some HVAC companies always say, “Yes,” we say, “It depends.” There are certain advantages to replacing your furnace and air conditioner at the same time, but it may not always be necessary. Let’s consider the important factors.

Average Lifespan

While the average lifespan of an air conditioner is 10 to 15 years, the average lifespan of a furnace is 20 to 30 years. In other words, you may have a furnace on your hands with 10 years of life left on it when you need to replace your air conditioner. However, you can figure out an optimal time to replace both with some simple math. Once a furnace and air conditioner are over 15 years old, you’re reaching the time when both have the potential of failing within the normal range.

Location

Is your furnace in a 2-foot crawl-space under your house? Is your air conditioner on the roof, surrounded by antique, hand-made tiles? One of the factors that impacts the price of a new furnace or air conditioner is installation. If the location is difficult to access, it may make more sense to schedule the installation of both units at the same time to save on installation costs.

Do You Want a High Efficiency Air Conditioner?

If it’s time to replace an outdated or malfunctioning air conditioner, you may opt for a newer, more energy-efficient unit. A high SEER rating model will save you on your monthly utility bill. Yet, it’s important to note that your furnace doesn’t impact your air conditioner’s efficiency. However, it does use the same blower motor (fan) that runs your air conditioner. This is what pushes air through your home’s ductwork. If your furnace doesn’t have a variable speed motor, any air conditioner you buy with a 16 SEER rating or higher may have reduced efficiency.

In other words, it’s not always a good idea to mix and match your HVAC system components. The alternative solution is to install a variable-speed blower motor in your existing furnace. However, this is akin to installing a Porsche engine into a Volkswagen bug. While it may be possible to do, it’s probably not a great idea. If you are considering replacing an aging air conditioning unit with a higher efficiency SEER model, it’s good practice to replace your furnace, as well.

Want to learn more about timing furnace and air conditioner replacements? Call the experts at Ellsworth Home Services today.

HVAC Tips for a Great Night’s Sleep

According to the National Sleep Foundation, nearly 50 percent of Americans have poor or insufficient sleep. This impacts their daily activities and reduces quality of life. One of the most important things we can do for our health and happiness is get sufficient sleep. While there are plenty of gadgets and medications that can induce sleep, one of the simplest ways to wake up feeling refreshed is to optimize your HVAC system. By effectively managing your indoor air temperature and quality, you set the stage for a good night’s sleep.

Keep It Cool

Although it’s tempting to turn up the heat and bundle up under layers of blankets on a cold fall evening, cool temperatures are actually better for sleep. Sleep experts recommend a bedroom temperature of between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit.

Maintaining this temperature is relatively simple during the fall and winter. But, here in the greater Phoenix area, it’s more challenging and costly during the warm weather months. This is why proper insulation and ceiling fans are also beneficial.

Rely on Your Programmable Thermostat

You don’t necessarily need to keep the thermostat set to 60 degrees around the clock, unless you really like high utility bills. Instead, you can program it to cool air to a lower temperature when you go to bed for a set amount of time. Thirty minutes to one hour is often sufficient. This will give you enough time to wind down and fall asleep. This one tip can save you hundreds of dollars every year.

Clean Your Air Filters

Your HVAC system doesn’t just cool and heat your indoor air, it also is designed to remove particulates in the air which can cause allergic symptoms and breathing problems. Many people lose sleep at night due to congestion, wheezing, itchy eyes and sneezing. A simple way to combat this is to regularly change your system’s air filters. We recommend that homeowners change them out at least once a month.

Do you want to learn more about how HVAC systems and indoor air quality can optimize your home for a better night’s sleep? Call the experts at Ellsworth Home Services at 480-593-2265.

5 Scary Home Heating Problems You Can Avoid

This entry was posted in Heating on by .

Halloween is nearly here. It’s the time for goblins and ghouls and cooler temperatures. Soon, you’re likely to flip your thermostat to heat to warm your home during those chilly fall evenings. Yet, is your heater ready to be put to the test? If you’re not sure, you may be setting yourself up for a scary heating problem.

The following are five common issues that you can prevent with regular home heating system maintenance.

Thermostat Malfunction

Your thermostat is one of the most common sources of heating problems. The good news is they are relatively inexpensive to replace. Some signs that indicate a potential thermostat issue:

  • Your thermostat and room temperature do not match
  • Heat pump blower is running continuously
  • Room temperatures are fluctuating

Carbon Monoxide Leaks

Older, gas furnaces often have rusted, cracked heater exchangers which can leak carbon monoxide. This is why it’s vital to have a carbon monoxide detector and to have your furnace regularly inspected by an HVAC contractor.  A trained professional can identify even tiny cracks that can be a source of gas leaks. Don’t take chances with an older gas heater. Call for a maintenance check today!

Warm Room, Cold Room

This is a perplexing problem, yet one that you may be able to fix yourself. Often, manually adjusting the vents in your home can improve airflow to a room. If you’re having a lack of heat in multiple rooms, it may be due to clogged or dirty filters or coils. This is yet another reason why a maintenance check is such a good idea.

Ignition Issue

If your heat suddenly stops, it could be due to a malfunctioning pilot light or ignition control. This is not a problem to tackle alone. Call immediately for service to determine the cause and for fast repair.

Drafty Rooms

Drafty windows and doors and poor insulation can result in insufficient heating and sky-high utility bills during the cold weather months. A professional HVAC contractor can identify the specific sources of escaping heating to help you keep your system as efficient and effective as possible.

Don’t be scared to turn on your heater this fall. Call Ellsworth Home Services now to schedule your seasonal maintenance check at 480-593-2265.