How can I make sure that my heating and air conditioning equipment is safe?
Always have your system checked yearly to make sure that your equipment is safe. In many cases, tiny cracks in the furnace heat exchanger can occur. When this occurs, deadly carbon monoxide gas can fill the house, causing serious health problems or death to those inside.
What other reasons are there for cleaning my furnace?
All heating contractors recommend an annual cleaning. A clean unit will operate more efficiently, getting more energy for your dollar. It also provides a safety check of your entire unit for cracked or damaged parts. All equipment manufacturers recommend that you have your equipment serviced annually. Cleaning your unit may also lengthen the life of your equipment.
How often should a standard throwaway filter be changed on my furnace/air handler?
Your filter should be changed about every four (4) weeks. A dirty or clogged up filter will not only cut down airflow and efficiency, it can also damage your equipment. If your filter is not a disposable, follow the manufacturer's advice for cleaning the filter. If it is a washable filter, make sure the filter is completely dry before you reinstall it.
Can I plant flowers and bushes around my unit?
Yes you can, however, manufacturers generally agree that all plants and bushes should not be any closer than 18" away and 36" away from the service door. Air conditioners and heat pump units need intake and exhaust air to operate efficiently and properly. If the air cannot circulate, the unit could build up heat and require service. Always make sure to keep your outdoor unit free of debris. Keep grass clippings, leaves and other debris away from your unit to help the unit drain properly and to operate properly.
I've heard people say that it is good to turn your thermostat on so the fan runs constantly, is that true?
Yes, there are a couple of reasons why. First, when you set the thermostat to "on", you get constant filtering of the air in your home. Second, because the air is always moving, you have a more even temperature throughout your home or business.
What types of things should I know when choosing a heating and air conditioning company?
First of all, do not be afraid to ask questions! There is no such thing as a silly question, so ask it. How long has the company been in business? Are they a well-established company? Are they trustworthy? Talk to your friends and neighbors to see who they use and who they like. Ask the company if they are licensed and insured because any reputable company will be!