What Temperature Should I Set the Thermostat in My House?

Determining the Correct Temperature Setting for Summer in Sacramento

What temperatures should you keep it in your home during the summer?  That’s what we are going to be talking about on this blog post.

When moving to a new home or just using your central AC for the first time you may want to know the temperature you should keep it at in your home during the summer.  There are a few answers depending on who you ask.  So let’s talk about those differences now.

Energy Star

Energy Star is a voluntary program led by the EPA and Dept. of Energy that helps business and people figure out ways to save money on their electric bills.  Energy Star says you should keep it at 78 in your house.  They also say you should keep the temps at 84 degrees when you’re not at home.

Energy Star rated thermostats already have these predetermined temperatures set in them.  You’re able to adjust those temps whenever and however you choose as the owner of the thermostat.

SMUD and PG&E are our local utility providers.  SMUD follows the US Department of Energy when they suggest setting your thermostats at 78 degrees when you are home and setting it up to 10 degrees higher for those times when you are not at home.

What Could Go Wrong?

What I wouldn’t do is set the temperature all the way down to the lowest setting when you want the air conditioning on.  Several things can go wrong here, and it doesn’t get cooler any faster in the house when you do this.  What can happen is you forget to turn the thermostat back off when your done needing cool air.  This leads to sky-high electric bills and a home that sees extreme temperature changes throughout the day.

So what temperature should I keep it at?  It’s simple: whatever temperature you want it to be at.  Let’s say the temperature on your thermostat says it’s 78 degrees in your home. Are you comfortable?  If not try lowering the temperature one to two degrees and see if that makes a difference.  Still not satisfied?  Set the temperature down even more.  If you find yourself the most comfortable at 74 degrees, then so be it.  You’re the king of your castle and you can set to wherever you feel the most comfortable.

For example, I work in the HVAC industry.  In the summer, I spend long hot days fixing other people’s AC systems.  By the time I get home, all I want is a nice cool place to sit and relax.  I usually want it about 72 degrees in the home.  My co-workers sometimes want it down to 68 degrees!  Other folks who may work inside, in normal environments where temperatures aren’t soaring around 120 degrees are just fine with their home temps at or above 78 degrees.

How the different temps affect your electric bill

Be Aware

A person who keeps their AC at 78 degrees in his or her home will have their AC come on less than a person who desires it to be 68 degrees in their house.  Your AC is the most expensive thing to run in your house, and that’s a pretty big spread too between 68 and 78 inside the home.  Typically, a person who keeps their system at 74 degrees and then starts setting it at 78 degrees can expect to save about 25 to 35 dollars a month on their bill.  Over the length of the entire summer, that money adds up!

Saving Money

Consider buying a thermostat that sets back at predetermined times.  Energy Star says it can save you $180 a year by switching to a setback type thermostat.   This allows you to set your thermostat for times of the day when you are coming and going.  For instance, the Honeywell thermostats we use want to know what time you wake up, what time you go to work, what time you come home, and what time you go to bed.  These four major events in your family’s daily lives can determine what temperature it will be in the house.

At Fox Family, we can easily set a program for it for the weekdays and then set it for the weekends.  Folks who are in their homes for the majority of the day, or don’t have a schedule where they work during the week can set it up for just what time you wake up and what time you go to bed.  Really any combination is available as Honeywell lets you decide on your terms.

A Helping Hand

And if you have one of these programmable thermostats, and you don’t feel comfortable setting a program on the thermostat, call or text us and we’ll come out and show you how to do it.  It really doesn’t matter which brand of thermostat it is either.  We’re familiar with all different types of them, and we just want to make sure you’re comfy in your home.

Summary

I hope this answers your question as to what temperature to set your thermostat in the summer.  These sunny and hot Sacramento summers can really drive you bonkers with the fact that we need to cool ourselves and our homes down.  Set it to whatever you are comfortable at, and that’s the right temperature.  Just remember that as long as your AC is on, your electric usage goes up.  And somebody’s gotta pay for that.

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Don’t miss our YouTube video on this topic:

Preparing Your Furnace for Fall

preparing your furnace for fall

Preparing Your Furnace for Fall

The onset of fall or winter triggers an avalanche of calls to Fox Family Heating & Air to address furnace issues. While furnace problems are at times inevitable, many of those issues can be prevented. Read on and discover some of the ways through which furnace maintenance can avert many of the potential problems during the heating season (fall and winter).

Replacing Dirty Filters

Dirty furnace filters can cause airflow issues around the home. This will become apparent once the entire home or parts of it aren’t getting enough heat even if the furnace is working. You can prevent such furnace problems by checking and replacing the filter once you find that it clogged. The filter can be located in the air inlet or within the furnace itself. Refer to the user manual and perform this crucial preventive maintenance activity. HVAC filter replacement is a routine task conducted by Sacramento heating and air conditioning companies during scheduled HVAC maintenance visits.

Fixing Unusual Pilot Light Functioning

The pilot light or furnace ignition can flicker or change color to yellow. This may be an indication that exhaust gases, such as carbon monoxide, have accumulated within your furnace. Could there be a blockage in the exhaust vent? Check whether the fan is working as it should. Ask for professional help in case you cannot immediately identify why the pilot light is flickering or appears yellow.

Stop Frequent Cycling

You can also prevent the furnace from cycling on and off at short intervals by prepping your furnace for fall. Confirm that the settings of the thermostat are correct. Incorrect settings (settings close to the ambient temperature, for example) may cause this frequent cycling. Airflow problems or clogged filters could also trigger frequent cycling. Call an expert from Fox Family Heating & Air if the frequent cycling doesn’t end once you implement the DIY fixes suggested.

Prevent Blower Belt Malfunctions

The blower belt can become frayed or it could slip. This can trigger an unusual sound in the furnace. Heated air may also fail to move around the home since the blower won’t be able to do its work of passing air over the heat exchanger. Get the blower belt checked as summer is coming to an end so that the furnace will be ready for the demands of fall and winter. Contact a Sacramento heating and air conditioning repair company for help if the blower develops a defect suddenly after the onset of fall.

Ensure Sufficient Clearance

Another way to prepare your furnace for fall is to inspect the area around it and remove any objects preventing airflow around the unit. This step is important in case you store belongings within the same location as the furnace during the months when the furnace isn’t needed. Remove everything that is within the clearance radius recommended by the manufacturer of that unit. This simple undertaking will avert those problems which originate from a congested space around the furnace.

Troubleshoot Electrical Component Issues

The limit switch can fail. Worn wiring can also cause the furnace breaker to trip. It is advisable to ask a professional to inspect the furnace before fall so that any defective electrical components can be repaired before they affect the performance of the furnace during the colder months of the year.

As you can see, you can perform some of the activities needed to make the furnace ready for fall. However, it is best to ask an expert from Fox Family Heating and Air to service the furnace so that it performs reliably and efficiently throughout fall and winter.

What Kind of Warranty Should I get with my HVAC Repair?

What seemed like a simple AC repair call turned complicated…

Has it ever happened to you? You paid an HVAC repairman to replace a capacitor for your blower motor. Then he told you the problem was fixed. You only paid $125 bucks for it! Now, two years later the capacitor has already failed, and your furnace is not blowing warm air again. No air is coming out! You call the repairman only to find out he won’t answer his phone or reply with any sense of urgency to your call for service.

HVAC Warranty

In the field of HVAC, the brand of parts used for the repair means so much these days. GE used to make a capacitor in the 70’s that still meets manufacturer specs to this day. Goodman has been a system that had been known to have capacitors that fail early. I mean, I’m okay with parts lasting ten to fifteen years, but come on, these capacitors that are failing within the first five years are just a lousy brand of parts and equipment to get. Trying to find the contractor to uphold some warranty on these replacement parts would help your pocketbook, right?

Company Warranties

Some companies will offer no warranty or one or two-year warranties on the parts they replace. That’s great, but even the worst capacitors are not failing within the first two years. The companies that are making these inferior parts are savings pennies. Fox Family Heating and Air Conditioning technicians use a trusted brand of capacitors from MARS. There are some other capacitor brands we will use, but if at all possible we are using the MARS brand of capacitors. Why? Because we offer a lifetime warranty on all of our replacement parts. For as long as you own the house, our part might fail on you, because things do happen, but we are going to replace it because we think we are giving you the best part on the market. I think if we are going to sell you a part, we should back it up.

This is the same for all parts we replace your system except for a few. Refrigerant, compressors, heat exchangers, and evaporator and condenser coils are not covered by the lifetime warranty. These are significant components of your system.

Fox Family Heating and Air Warranties 

The next time your system fails and you pay an HVAC company to come out and fix your system, ask them if they will stand behind their product like Fox Family Heating and Air does. Why they are skimping on the money to buy cheap capacitors for your house is hard to understand for me. It’s no way to earn an excellent reputation in Sacramento. When someone tells me they are going to repair my HVAC system, the part they use is just automatically going to be a durable, time-tested part that is going to last 5 to ten years at least! Fox Family is interested in creating long-lasting relationships with our clients. That is why we are offering a lifetime warranty on our parts. We think these are the best parts on the market, so we stand behind the products we install in your system because it means a lot to us when you call us for your HVAC needs.

5 Factors Affecting the Cost of Buying and Installing a Sacramento HVAC Unit

professionalism in the workplace

Many people who face replacing an HVAC unit in Sacramento want to know just how much that project will cost them before they commit to that system’s replacement. Often times air conditioner replacement is not planned, it’s more of a sudden purchase in the heat of summer. So, even if you don’t plan on replacing anytime soon, this blog is still a great read. This article discusses some of the factors of the cost of buying and installing a Sacramento HVAC unit.

The Size of Your Home

An AC unit should be selected based on its suitability. Bigger homes will require bigger AC units because those bigger homes will have more air that needs to be conditioned. The bigger air conditioning units usually cost more to buy and install. You should, therefore, expect to spend more on purchasing an AC unit if you have moved to a bigger home. If your home’s Air conditioner is more than a decade old, the current AC may be undersized for your home. Often times with replacement you need to have your contractor look at the overall design of the ductwork (as detailed below) and the size and location of the unit for maximum efficiency.

The HVAC Equipment Brand Preferred

The purchase price of your new air conditioning unit will also be affected by the brand you opt for. Think about this price in relation to what would happen if you were to buy a car. A Porsche is likely to be more expensive than a Toyota even though they’re both cars.

Some brands of air conditioning units are reputed to be more reliable than others are. Such dependable brands may be more expensive than the little-known brands. It may be wiser for you to talk to a (Sacramento) heating and air technician for advice about the best brands to consider so that you widen your options and find something within your budget.

Your Home’s Complexity

The complexity of your home will also impact the cost of installing that new air conditioning system. For example, a home in which spray-on insulation was used makes it tougher on the installers since they will have to cut through the insulations. Similarly, historical homes take more time since the home is fragile.

The Sacramento HVAC installer will visit your home and survey it before estimating how much the installation project is likely to cost.

The Extra Features Selected

The specific features that you want your new HVAC system to have can affect the total cost of the system. For instance, individuals who wish to have multiple zones will have to pay for more hardware (zone dampers and thermostats, for example) than another homeowner who doesn’t want to have air conditioning zones in the home.

However, you should not shy away from getting some of the extra features. If those features will increase the comfort level and result in lower long-term maintenance costs it is worth it. The higher upfront cost will be justified by the lower ongoing costs that you incur if you have the latest additional features on the market.

The Condition of the Ductwork

It would be wasteful to acquire an efficient AC unit and then link it to defective ductwork. In fact, many jurisdictions have mandatory inspections in case a new AC unit is being installed.

Any leaks and worn ductwork components will increase the installation cost. Since those issues will have to be attended to before the new air conditioning unit is commissioned for use in your home.

An air conditioning unit should be selected based on the location and home where that unit will be installed. Never undertake such a task on your own. Hire an air conditioning replacement professional like Fox Family Heating and Air and let us recommend the best unit for your needs.

Average Cost of Furnace Repair

Average Cost of Furnace Repair

Average Cost of Furnace Repair in Sacramento

Nothing could be as bad as your furnace breaking in the evening just as temperatures are dropping rapidly in winter. The first thing that is likely to occupy your mind is the cost of fixing that furnace or heat source since a replacement is often very expensive. Sacramento furnace repair experts explain that the repair cost will depend on the type and model of furnace you have as discussed below.

Repairing an Electric Furnace

Electric furnaces move air over coils in order to heat that air. The heated air is then distributed to the different rooms in your home by a network of ducts. Electric furnace units tend to be small, so the cost of repairing them also tends to be lower than the cost of repairing the other types of furnaces. Sacramento furnace repair experts estimate that it requires a maximum of $300 for repairs but the cost varies depending on the particular make/model of the electric furnace.

Propane Gas Furnaces

Propane gas furnaces run on liquefied propane. The gas burns in order to push heated air around your home. A pilot light sets off the operation of the furnace by igniting the burners located inside a combustion chamber. Heat travels from the combustion chamber to the heat exchanger from where it continues to the rest of the home. Propane furnaces are more expensive to repair and the cost will range from $300 to about $1,200 depending on the specific component affected. The heat exchanger is the most expensive component to repair (about $1,200 to replace it).

Natural Gas Furnaces

Fox Family Heating and Air technicians explain that natural gas furnaces only differ from propane gas furnaces due to the fuel used. The rest of the components and mode of operation are identical. Consequently, the repair cost for natural gas furnaces is similar to the cost you are likely to incur if you had a broken propane gas furnace.

Boilers

Some homes are heated by hot water. This water starts out in the boiler where it is heated before a network of pipes moves it around the home. Radiators amply the effect of the hot water so that each room feels cozy and warm.

Hot water systems rarely develop major problems suddenly. Instead, minor issues build up until the system malfunctions. For example, mineral deposits can slowly accumulate inside the water tank until they finally cause it to spring a major leak. Honest furnace repair experts will tell you that the repairs will cost from $180 to nearly $600 depending on the exact defect found.

Heat Pumps

Heat pumps work by transferring heat from outside to the interior of your home during winter. The pump then reverses and channels indoor heat outside during the hot months of the year. The heat pump is usually linked to your air conditioning system. Some heat pumps rely on geothermal energy while others rely on heated water to operate. Repairing a heat pump costs more than repairing an electric furnace. For example, the thermostat alone will cost you about $300 to replace while a damaged defrost control board will cost you double what the thermostat costs.

How to Limit Furnace Defects

As you can see from the estimates above, you will spend a lot of money on furnace repairs if you don’t take steps to preserve the condition of your furnace. Greg Fox recommends two key measures to avert most furnace issues.

  • Annual Inspections. Ask technicians from Fox Family Heating and Air to inspect and service your furnace once each year. So, that any developing problem is detected and fixed early before it causes more costly damage to your unit. For example, a faulty seal can be replaced before it causes the blower motor to fail.
  • Furnace Filter Replacement. The Sacramento furnace repair professional should also change the furnace filter during the annual service visit. You can also learn how to perform this simple maintenance task to save time and money.

Talk to Fox Family Heating and Air, a professional Sacramento HVAC company, before you have any repairs done. You will be given advice regarding the suitability of repair or replacement of the furnace unit based on several factors.

 

When Should I Change My Air Filter at Home?

when-should-i-change-my-air-filter-at-home

When Should I Change My Air Filter at Home?

It may be unwise for you to base only on the recommended air filter change intervals indicated by the manufacturer of that filter. This is because many other factors come into play to determine how often those filters should be changed. This article discusses some of those contributory factors which Sacramento heating and air conditioning companies, such as Fox Family Heating and Air, have in mind as they formulate a filter replacement schedule for Sacramento homeowners.

The Size of Your Home

Larger homes generally require the indoor air to be turned multiple times by the HVAC system before the desired temperature can be reached. The filters in those larger homes will clog up faster since they will have more air to clean up (removing contaminants). The filters in smaller homes generally do less work since there is less air to clean. The filter in a smaller home may require to be replaced at longer intervals than is the case for filters in a larger home. However, this can change based on the size of the filters installed. Your preferred air conditioning repair technician in Sacramento will advise you accordingly.

HVAC Usage Patterns

The air filters in a home whose HVAC system operates 24/7 may need to be replaced more frequently when compared to the filters in a summer home which stays locked up for most of the year. Greater HVAC system use exposes the filters to more contaminants. With greater use comes shorter replacement intervals, such as once each month as opposed to twice a year for the summer home.

Number of Home Occupants

Sacramento heating and air conditioning companies also consider the number of people in your home when recommending how often the air filters should be replaced. The more the occupants, the more dust and other contaminants will be stirred. Homes with three occupants will have a longer filter change interval than homes with ten occupants, for example. This is assuming that the two homes in question are of approximately the same size.

The Presence of Pets

People who have pets in their homes have to change the air filters more often than are the filters in homes without pets. This is because the pet dander can clog the filters quickly, thereby necessitating frequent filter replacements. It follows that the more pets you have, the sooner you will have to change the air filters in your home.

The Health Status of Home Occupants

Homes which have people that suffer from asthma or allergies require more frequent air filter changes when compared to homes whose occupants don’t suffer from these health challenges. Any delay to change the filters when they are dirty will expose the sensitive people to contaminants which can trigger flare ups in their condition. Air conditioner replacement professionals in Sacramento can advise you to switch to a different kind of filter in case the asthma or allergy attacks aren’t addressed by the filter replacements you have been using.

The Type of Filter Installed

It is a known fact that not all AC filters are of the same quality. For example, a manufacturer of one type of filter will recommend that you change out that filter every month while a manufacturer of another type of filter (whose quality is better) will recommend that you replace the filter after three or four months of use. So, it is necessary for you to keep the manufacturer-recommended change interval in mind when planning how often you should replace the air filters.

The Location of Your Home

The location of your home can make it necessary to change the air filters more frequently or less frequently. For instance, a home in a busy metropolitan center will be exposed to more contaminants (car exhaust fumes, for example). The air filters in such a home will need to be changed frequently to maintain acceptable indoor air quality. In contrast, a home located away from industrial or commercial locales may be exposed to less dust and other pollutants. Such a home will require less frequent air filter changes.

As you can see, the right air filter replacement schedule can only be developed once all the factors above are kept in mind. Work with a professional from Fox Family Heating and Air to develop an appropriate air filter replacement schedule for your home so that you don’t take too long or replace those filters too soon. You can also inspect the filters each month and notice when light no longer penetrates through the filter media. That will signal that you should change the filter since it will be dirty/clogged.

What happens during an AC Tune-Up

What happens during an AC Tune-Up

What Happens During an AC Tune-Up? It’s important for homeowners to know what a technician will do when he or she comes to perform an AC tune-up in Sacramento. This helps the homeowner to confirm that proper maintenance work has been done. Read on and discover some of the things you should expect when your air conditioner is tuned-up.

Tune-Up Activities on the Indoor Unit

Electrical Component Inspection and Adjustment.  Your Fox Family technician will check all the electrical components on the indoor unit before adjusting anything that needs it. For instance, loose electrical connections will be tightened during this service call.

Thermostat Inspection and Adjustment.  AC tune-ups also involve assessing the thermostat to confirm that it is working well. This important instrument will be recalibrated in case the performance test reveals that the thermostat was no longer taking accurate readings of the temperature within your home.

Refrigerant Checks. The AC tune-up will also include checking whether any refrigerant leak exists. The technician will check the level of the refrigerant and adjust it if any anomaly is discovered.

Electrical Consumption and Performance Measurements. Fox Family Heating and Air technicians also perform tests to confirm that all electrical components consume power within their design specifications and that they are still working well. For example, the motors will be tested to ascertain how much power they are drawing. Appropriate air conditioner repairs  will be done on defective components.

Air Filter Inspection and Cleaning. Attention is also paid to the air filter to make sure that it is still capable of doing its work.  Your technician will clean the filter in case you have a reusable one. He or she may replace the old filter in case you use disposable ones.

Outdoor Unit Tune-Up Items

Coil Inspection and Cleaning. The outdoor unit has condenser coils which help to dissipate the heat absorbed by the refrigerant as warm air from your home flows over the evaporator coils in the indoor unit. The service technician from Fox Family Heating and Air will inspect these coils and clean them so that nothing stops heat exchange from taking place effectively.

Fan Blade Checks and Adjustment. The indoor unit of your AC has fan blades which help to push the air from your home over the evaporator coils so that heat can be extracted from that air. The alignment and structural integrity will be checked and any needed adjustments will be made.

Code Violations. The service technician will check whether the outdoor unit is installed in accordance with the applicable codes of your area. For example, some jurisdictions put restrictions on how much clearance should be maintained between the outdoor unit and any nearby structure, such as the exterior wall of your home. Any debris found around the unit will also be removed so that air circulation isn’t impeded.

Lubrication of Moving Parts. Air conditioner tune-ups are incomplete if lubrication hasn’t been given attention. The moving parts can wear out quickly if they aren’t well lubricated at all times. The lubrication will, therefore, be topped up to avert this premature wear of the components.

Drain Line Inspection and Cleaning. The process of conditioning the air in your home leads to the collection of water in the drain pan. This water is taken out of the home through the drain line. Technicians from Fox Family Heating and Air will inspect the drain line for clogs, mold or other forms of damage. The drain line will then be cleaned in case it is found to be free from damage.  

The discussion above may not have provided a comprehensive list of all the tune-up activities which may be done when a licensed technician comes to your home. Ask your Fox Family technician to give you a copy of the checklist used during the tune-up. You will also be given a report after the service call. Use that report to plan how to address any developing issues that were identified.

How Your Air Conditioner Works

HVAC system repair

Some Sacramento homeowners may think that their AC works by removing hot air from the home and replacing that hot air with cool air. However, this is far from the truth. Read on and learn how experts from Fox Family Heating & Air, a Sacramento heating and air conditioning company, explain how your air conditioner works in order to cool your home during the hot months of the year.

Two Synchronized Movements

Two kinds of movement work together to deliver comfort to you in your home. The first movement involves the sucking of warm air into the vents in your home. Remember, warm air rises, so the warmest air in your home is the one that gets sucked into the vents for circulation through the AC system. This same air returns through the return air registers when it has cooled down. How it cools down is connected to the second kind of movement in the AC system.

The second movement has to do with the refrigerant in the AC. This refrigerant is cold before it gains heat from the air moving around it. The refrigerant then heats up and goes through a system that cools it before returning it to absorb more heat. The same refrigerant keeps undergoing these transformations without needing to be recharged. You should, therefore, contact air conditioning repair experts in Sacramento in case you see any signs of a refrigerant leak. The process of heating then cooling the refrigerant will become clearer once you understand the workings of the two key parts of the air conditioning system as discussed below.

The Indoor Unit

The indoor unit of an air conditioner is normally installed in the basement or the attic in most homes. The main component of this indoor unit is the evaporator. The evaporator has coils within which a refrigerant circulates. The refrigerant is initially cold.

The hot air which has been sucked by the vents in the different rooms of your home passes over these coils containing the cold refrigerant. The refrigerant absorbs the heat from this warm air and that heat causes the refrigerant to turn into a gas (that is why the unit is called the evaporator). The air is now cool and is returned to the different rooms in order to make you feel more comfortable.

Meanwhile, the heated refrigerant (which is now a gas) travels towards the outdoor unit in order to be cooled so that it can absorb more heat from the next batch of heated air coming from the rooms in your home.

The Outdoor Unit

The main components of the outdoor unit of your air conditioner are the compressor and the condenser. The heated air from the indoor unit travels out and finds the compressor. This compressor pressurizes the heated air and pushes it towards the condenser.

The condenser has fins similar to those in the radiator of your vehicle. These fins provide a large area into which the compressed refrigerant is released. The large surface area allows the pressurized gas to spread out.

Meanwhile, fans blow air across the surface of the fins into which heated air has been released. That ambient air absorbs the heat from the refrigerant and the refrigerant cools. The refrigerant converts into a liquid as it loses heat to the air around the condenser fins. That is why this section of the outdoor unit is called the condenser (it facilitates the condensation of the hot refrigerant gas into a cold liquid). This cold liquid flows towards the indoor unit where it will absorb heat from the warm air coming from the vents in your home. You may need to consider air conditioner replacement (Sacramento) in case a major component, such as the compressor, fails and the outdoor unit can no longer do its work.

The process described above is repeated until the thermostat detects that the temperature inside the home has dropped to the desired level. A signal is then sent to the control unit of the AC to shut off the system. Another signal will be sent later to restart the system once the thermostat detects that the temperature has risen beyond the set level. Your AC keeps cycling on and off throughout the day in order to keep the home at the desired temperature.

The discussion above only covers the basics of how your air conditioner works. Other activities, such as the removal of contaminants (by the filter) and the removal of excess humidity (by the dehumidifier) take place while the heated air is moving from the rooms to be cooled and then returned once more.

Any defect at any point of this well-coordinated process will affect the degree of comfort that you experience in your home. That is why it is important to call AC maintenance and repair and repair professionals from trusted companies, such as Fox Family Heating and Air so that an inspection can be conducted to locate and fix the defect.

What Causes a Leaking Air Conditioner?

Sacramento HVAC - Why is my air Conditioner leaking

What Causes a Leaking Air Conditioner? It is necessary for homeowners to understand why their air conditioning systems may leak water either within or outside the home. Read on and discover some of the common reasons given by a Sacramento heating and air conditioning company to explain why ACs may leak water.

Clogged Air Filters

Professionals at Fox Family Heating and Air explain that a clogged or dirty air filter is one of the most prevalent causes of water leaks in air conditioning systems. The clog/dirt affects the flow of air through the AC system. Consequently, the evaporator coil will freeze up and start leaking water as the ice melts slowly. Replace the air filter regularly in order to avoid these water leaks from causing serious damage to your AC.

Insufficient Refrigerant

Low refrigerant levels can also trigger water leaks in the air conditioner. Air conditioning repair (Sacramento) is needed when you notice that the home is no longer as cool as you would want it. Leaking refrigerant reduces airflow within the system. The net result is that the evaporator coil will freeze as discussed earlier. Don’t attempt to fix a refrigerant leak on your own because you may cause worse problems, such as failing to identify all leaks prior to recharging the system.

Damaged Drain Pans

Condensate is usually directed to the drain pan before being discharged outside the home. However, the drain pan may start leaking and allow water to drip onto the floor or ceiling. The best remedy to this problem is to install a new drain pan. Temporary fixes, such as using epoxy compound, may allow the corrosion/damage to worsen and result in worse leaks.

Clogged Drain Line

The drain pan has a drain line through which water flows out of the house. Over time, dirt and debris may accumulate and cause a blockage in that drain line. The condensate will then back up and leak into the home. You can use a shop vacuum to suck the clog out of that line. Alternatively, hire a professional from Fox Family Heating, Air Conditioning and Solar so that the lines can be cleared and flushed.

Malfunctioning Condensate Pump

Sacramento homes whose AC units are installed in the basement require a condensate pump to force the condensate up the gradient to the exterior of the home. A defect in this pump can trigger water leaks from the AC since the water will be unable to leave the condensate pan. Fix or replace that pump in order to put an end to this type of leak.

Improper Installation

Some air conditioners develop water leaks simply because the person who installed the unit didn’t position the condensate trap correctly. This is particularly possible for installations that don’t require a condensate pump. The incorrect position will prevent gravity from pushing the water down the drain tubes. Ask a professional from a Sacramento heating and air conditioning company to come and check the condensate system so that the poor installation can be corrected.

Low Ambient Temperatures

It is also possible for your air conditioner to leak water when it doesn’t have any defects. This can happen towards the end of the cooling season as the temperature outside drops. The coils will freeze and leak water when you still want the AC to cool the home while it is very cool outside. Turn your AC off in such a case or adjust the thermostat settings so that you prevent the coils from sustaining irreparable damage.

A leaking air conditioner can cause serious damage not just to the AC but to your home as well. Contact Fox Family Heating and Air in Sacramento for a thorough inspection so that a final solution to the leak can be found.

Why Attic Insulation is Important in Your Sacramento Home

Why Attic Insulation is Important in Your Sacramento Home

You may not need to look further than your attic in case you suspect that your home is no longer as energy-efficient as you want it to be. The insulation of your attic may have deteriorated. This article discusses some of the compelling reasons why you should have the attic of your Sacramento home insulated this summer.

Keeping Cool Air In

Warm air has a tendency to rise or flow to places that are cooler. In this case, the warm air outside your home will try to find its way inside through the attic and other gaps in the exterior envelop of your house.
Such heated air will end up displacing the cool air within the home if the attic isn’t properly insulated to prevent such air movements.

Proper insulation serves the role of blocking heated air from outside from getting in. Consequently, your Sacramento home will stay cool during the summer heat.

Keeping Interior Temperatures Stable

Another key reason why you should insulate the attic of your Sacramento home is the effect of such insulation upon the regulation of the temperature inside the home. Homes with poor attic insulation are likely to have hot and cold spots due to the leakage of conditioned air through the attic.

The cool air provided by your air conditioning system can keep escaping to the attic as warm air from outside gets in. This entry of warm air ends up causing the affected sections of the home to have fluctuating temperatures even if the AC is working as it should. Adequate insulation in the attic averts such temperature differences.

Reduced Energy Bills

As you may have already noticed, proper attic insulation has a beneficial impact upon the energy needed to keep your Sacramento home cool during the summer. This benefit comes about because less energy will be lost in trying to make up for the conditioned air which has escaped through the attic. The air conditioning system will, therefore, find it easier to maintain the temperature which you have set for the home.

HVAC System Longevity

The lifespan of your Sacramento HVAC system will also benefit from attic insulation. This is because the unit will not run for extended durations in a vain attempt to keep the home within the temperature range that you have selected.
The shorter run times (and longer intervals before the system cycles on again) will cause less wear and tear. Expensive repairs come when different components of your air conditioning system are overworked. Consequently, the system components will last longer than the AC components in another home whose attic isn’t properly insulated in the summer.

Better Indoor Air Quality

Many homeowners in Sacramento complain of unpleasant odors within the home. People who suffer from allergies may also experience frequent flare-ups in homes where the attic isn’t adequately insulated. Such problems may arise because condensation or moisture may accumulate within the attic due to the frequent temperature variations that take place at different times of the day or year. That moisture promotes the growth of mold, mildew, and rot.

The filters of your AC system may also end up getting clogged quickly due to the heavy load of pollutants which must be removed as the air is recirculated within the home. Attic insulation can go a long way towards preventing mold and other pollutants from compromising the air that you breathe inside the home.

Attic insulation is available in different forms, such as foam insulation and batt rolls. Talk to an HVAC repair professional in Sacramento so that he or she can help you to select the most appropriate attic insulation in order to make your HVAC system more energy-efficient.