Modern air conditioning systems are not designed to draw air into the room from the outside, they only recirculate the increasingly cool air on the inside. Because this inside air always has some amount of moisture suspended in it, the cooling portion of the process always causes ambient warm water vapor to condense on the cooling coils and to drip from them down onto a catch tray at the bottom of the unit from which it must then be routed outside, usually through a drain hole. As this moisture has no dissolved minerals in it, it will not cause mineral buildup on the coils. This will happen even if the ambient humidity level is low. If ice begins to form on the evaporative fins, it will reduce circulation efficiency and cause the development of more ice, etc. A clean and strong circulatory fan can help prevent this, as will raising the target cool temperature of the unit's thermostat to a point that the compressor is allowed to turn off occasionally. A failing thermistor may also cause this problem. Refrigerators without a defrost cycle may have this same issue. Dust can also cause the fins to begin blocking air flow with the same undesirable result: ice.
Ground source, or geothermal, heat pumps are similar to ordinary heat pumps, but instead of transferring heat to or from outside air, they rely on the stable, even temperature of the earth to provide heating and air conditioning. Many regions experience seasonal temperature extremes, which would require large-capacity heating and cooling equipment to heat or cool buildings. For example, a conventional heat pump system used to heat a building in Montana's −70 °F (−57 °C) low temperature or cool a building in the highest temperature ever recorded in the US—134 °F (57 °C) in Death Valley, California, in 1913 would require a large amount of energy due to the extreme difference between inside and outside air temperatures. A few feet below the earth's surface, however, the ground remains at a relatively constant temperature. Utilizing this large source of relatively moderate temperature earth, a heating or cooling system's capacity can often be significantly reduced. Although ground temperatures vary according to latitude, at 6 feet (1.8 m) underground, temperatures generally only range from 45 to 75 °F (7 to 24 °C).
Because an air conditioner moves heat between the indoor coil and the outdoor coil, both must be kept clean. This means that, in addition to replacing the air filter at the evaporator coil, it is also necessary to regularly clean the condenser coil. Failure to keep the condenser clean will eventually result in harm to the compressor, because the condenser coil is responsible for discharging both the indoor heat (as picked up by the evaporator) and the heat generated by the electric motor driving the compressor.
An annual inspection of your unit can ensure that the various potential problems mentioned above are detected early, and before they require complete replacement. During this inspection, for instance, a professional might find small cracks in your heat exchanger or a faulty seal in your blower motor. Some manufacturer's warranties even require these annual inspections to maintain validity. Typically, your furnace inspection will cost between $80 and $150 depending on the area in which you live and the professional you work with.
Air conditioner equipment power in the U.S. is often described in terms of "tons of refrigeration", with each approximately equal to the cooling power of one short ton (2000 pounds or 907 kilograms) of ice melting in a 24-hour period. The value is defined as 12,000 BTU per hour, or 3517 watts. Residential central air systems are usually from 1 to 5 tons (3.5 to 18 kW) in capacity.
Air-source heat pumps are more popular in milder winter climates where the temperature is frequently in the range of 4–13 °C (40–55 °F), because heat pumps become inefficient in more extreme cold. This is because ice forms on the outdoor unit's heat exchanger coil, which blocks air flow over the coil. To compensate for this, the heat pump system must temporarily switch back into the regular air conditioning mode to switch the outdoor evaporator coil back to being the condenser coil, so that it can heat up and defrost. A heat pump system will therefore have a form of electric resistance heating in the indoor air path that is activated only in this mode in order to compensate for the temporary indoor air cooling, which would otherwise be uncomfortable in the winter.
Energy efficiency can be improved even more in central heating systems by introducing zoned heating. This allows a more granular application of heat, similar to non-central heating systems. Zones are controlled by multiple thermostats. In water heating systems the thermostats control zone valves, and in forced air systems they control zone dampers inside the vents which selectively block the flow of air. In this case, the control system is very critical to maintaining a proper temperature.
During those frigid winter months, keeping your home warm is absolutely essential for your family’s health and well-being. An inefficient home heating system not only makes for an uncomfortable home life in the winter, it also drives up home heating costs. The past few years have yielded many advances in furnace and heating system technology, with manufacturers producing significantly more efficient equipment. A more energy efficient furnace or heating system keeps your home from losing heat which translates into visible savings on your heating bill. Whether you are looking for heating repair service or a complete overhaul of your home heating system and new heater installation, the HVAC technicians at Airtron keep everything Simple. Friendly. Direct.
HVAC equipment is estimated to last about 15 to 20 years. Yet over the years, parts go out and need to be repaired. Heat sensors, exchangers, and ducts can become worn out. Air conditioning motors may need repairing from time to time. For repairs to your heating and air conditioning systems, and even general maintenance, let HomeAdvisor help. Enter your zip code and let us connect you with prescreened HVAC repair services near you.
Cut down on energy costs and prevent damage to your furnace by addressing a gas furnace that's overactive or short cycling. Besides the need for consistently comfortable temperatures, this issue could cause long-term safety issues to your home, making it very important to address. From a faulty thermostat to a dirty filter, there are several possible causes to investigate.