8 Things to Check Before Calling for A/C Service

1. Have you checked the filter? – Dirt is the number one cause of system failure.

Filters

2. Is the gas meter turned on with your local utility provider?

3. Have you made sure the electrical power to the house is on? 

4. Are there batteries in the thermostat? – If the thermostat display doesn’t light up, change the batteries.

5. Did the circuit breaker get tripped? – Reset the breaker, if the breaker to your HVAC unit has been tripped.  Keep in mind that circuit breakers trip for safety reasons and if the breaker trips again, a certified electrician should look into the problem. Many times, the breaker isn’t the problem, it’s something in the wiring pulling more electricity than it should.

6. Check the condensation pump and/or A/C drain line? – If it is full or plugged empty the pan and flush the drain line.  An HVAC technician IS recommended for this.

7.  Have you made sure the thermostat is set to cool or heat?  

8.  Is the outdoor unit dirty and/or filled with cotton or debris?

Please note that articles from other places may mention more or different things to check, however, they most likely are not safe to check yourself.  I just read an article where an HVAC technician died by touching the filter cabinet.  They died just by trying to change the filter.  Change a filter is normally a safe thing to do.  If you ever question your safety when checking your HVAC equipment, call an certified and licensed HVAC company.

HVAC Cabinet

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How to Stay Comfortable in Your Home

Summer is here and it’s only going to get hotter, but you can beat the heat with just a few of these home energy saving tips.  You can keep the heat outside where it belongs and enjoy the comfort of your own home. This can all happen without breaking the bank, also!

Weatherproof your windows

Cracks may have developed around the area where window and walls meet, if you have older windows in your home.

See if adding spray foam or caulking to block hot air from coming in and cold air from leaking out will help. You might also consider applying clear insulating film to your windows, because while it’s more popular in wintertime, it does a fine job of keeping your home comfortable in summer too. The only problem with adding clear insulating film is you can’t easily open your windows.

Weatherproof your doors

Fortify your home against summer’s assault and keep the heat away. In simpler terms, weatherproof.

  • Weatherstripping comes first

    Vinyl or rubber weatherstripping on door jambs is an economical way to make your home more resistant to outside hot or cold air and retain the temperature your HVAC system has created.  Weatherstripping is usually easy to apply and self-adhesive.  Plus it creates a barrier that seals your doors when they’re closed. …Try weatherstripping also on the tops and sides of doors.

  • Door sweeps protect against floor-level gusts of air

    Contemplate adding a door sweep if your doors are leaking air along the bottom. The door sweep along the bottom creates a seal to keep weather away when the door is closed, but won’t impede opening and closing.

  • Draft guards block air leaks that even door sweeps can’t protect against

    Think about using a movable draft guard if your door sweep can’t even protect against the air leakage.

Get an air conditioning or heat pump check-up

A heat pump or air-conditioner check-up can pay itself off instantly by giving you peace of mind, and by keeping you comfortable and energy efficient. To schedule a summer tune-up that includes indoor and outdoor coil cleaning, an air filtration check, a freon (refrigerant) check and a few more other things that help your air conditioner not work as hard, give us a call at 402-362-5702.

Maintenance Agreement/J & R Heating

Get a home energy audit

Contemplate requesting a home energy audit from your local HVAC or utility company to find some unexpected ways to save energy and keep cool. For a home energy audit, an inspector will come to your home and check many of the most common areas where energy is lost and give you advice on how to stop it from happening. The advice of your home energy audit professional can often result in savings of 5-30% on energy costs, if executed properly.

Maybe a new air-conditioning system is in order

Older systems can be inefficient and cost you more and more money each month on your utility bills. No matter how much you weatherproof, insulate and prepare, it won’t make much difference if your air conditioner is over 15 years old.  Even on the hottest Summer days of the year, you may be surprised to see how much money newer technology can save you.  Check out our Energy Savings Calculator to see how much a new unit could save you.

What Should I Set My Thermostat To When I’m On Vacation?

In light of my vacation to California coming up at the end of the week, I felt this was the perfect topic.  It also doesn’t hurt that “What should I set my thermostat to when I’m away on vacation or I’m not home?” is a common question we hear from our customers.  During the spring and summer months, people spend a lot of time on vacation. When these people come home, they don’t want to come back to an unbearably hot house.  They especially don’t want to pay for unreasonably high energy bills when they haven’t even been home.

Picking the perfect temperature setting while on vacation depends on what the homeowner normally sets their cooling system temperature at when they are home. When on vacation, the thermostat should be set a maximum of five degrees higher than the normal setting. For example, If it is normally set at 73 when they are home, the thermostat should be set it at 78 while they are away.

This way energy is not wasted and the house won’t be overly toasty and humid when they return. It should be noted that cooling only changes the air 18 to 22 degrees, while heating changes the temperature 20 to 40 degrees.

It is important to NOT completely turn off the air conditioner so humidity is still being removed from the home.  This is because heat and humidity is the ideal breeding ground for mold, mildew, and fungus.

Another option is to have us install a WiFi Thermostat for:

  • Remote access with Cloud connectivity lets you adjust temperature and control energy costs from anywhere, using your smartphone, tablet or laptop.
  • One-Touch Away Mode overrides your regular programming schedule when you’re away and automatically turns down heating or cooling to save energy.
  • Weather-on-Demand with five-day forecast lets you know what to expect outside throughout the day.
  • Alerts and Reminders not only will your iComfort Wi-Fi monitor itself with advanced diagnostics, it can also send you and your dealer alerts and emails if the system needs service or maintenance.
  • The Nuvango™ skin option and matching screensaver allow you to cover and protect the thermostat interface with any design or pattern you prefer. You can also choose a color to blend in with your décor or the thermostat screensaver.
  • Automatic updates connect you to new features as they become available.
  • Simple touchscreen interface with intuitive graphics and bright backlighting makes programming easy.

iComfort Wi-Fi Touchscreen Thermostat