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What can I do before calling for service?

Always check three major components before you call for repairs.

  • Power Source

  • Thermostat

  • Air Filter

More often than not, the problem is caused by an accidental shutting off of the system, so check the emergency shut off switch or the fuse box. Call a technician if your heating or air conditioning system is consistently causes power surges. Also check the thermostat to make sure that it is on the right settings.

Then check the air filters to ensure that they don’t need to be changed. Clogged filters can create airflow issues and other problems. Make sure you change your air filters once a month throughout the season. In forced air systems, also make sure nothing is blocking the vents if your system is not maintaining the desired temperatures in your home.

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Should I cover my outdoor unit (AC) in the wintertime?

Covering your outdoor AC unit will not necessarily provide you with any benefits. While you may think it will protect it from weather, manufacturers today use durable materials that are designed to protect the equipment from rain, snow, and other inclement weather. If you cool and heat your home with a heat pump, covering it will actually harm the heating elements since proper airflow is needed for it to run properly in the winter.

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What time of year is a good time to replace my system?

Depending on what type of system you are getting, usually it’s a good idea to replace it before the heating or cooling season begins. For AC systems, try to schedule the service in the spring, and schedule in the fall for a new heating system. This is a good idea even for heat pump systems since you may not need your system as much during the moderate times of the year and you don’t want to be stuck without it during times of extreme weather.

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What forms of payment do you accept for new systems?

At Comfort flow, we accept a variety of payments and can work with you to help finance your new system. We offer promotions and specials, so remember to keep checking our site for current deals. You can always call one of our friendly staff members to discuss your options.

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Why is my fan running all the time?

If you have the fan set to "On" instead of on the "Auto" setting, the indoor fan will continuously. Keep in mind that there are advantages to leaving it on rather than switching it to "Auto.” See next question.

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Why should I set my thermostat to leave the fan on all the time?

Running the fan will help to maintain indoor air quality since it helps circulate the air inside your home. It will also help keep your home more comfortable. Reverse the direction of your ceiling fans in the winter to get even better results.

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Why is it important to get the proper size?

While there are several factors involved in choosing a new heating and air conditioning system, your first step is to consult with an HVAC contractor. The technicians at Comfort Flow will provide you with an energy audit and a load calculation for your particular home. This helps locate any areas that could use improvement, such as air sealing, and also ensure that we properly size your new system. Getting the right size is important for many reasons, and you should always hire a professional contractor to perform any load calculations or assessment of your current system if you are thinking of upgrading. We can also go over the different efficiency ratings and explain what they mean.

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Why is my heat pump not providing heat when it is in heating mode?

Because an air source heat pump draws in the colder air from outside, the air temps of the air stream coming out of the registers can be anywhere from 90 to 95 degrees, which means that it is significantly warmer than the cold air outside your home; however, it is still below the average body temperature, so even though it is heating your home, it will feel cool to the touch.

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What do I need a backup heater for my heat pump?

Heat pumps are typically more efficient in moderate climates since they have to work harder in freezing temperatures to warm the air coming in from outside. This is why dual fuel systems are popular in colder climates. The backup heater (usually a gas furnace) will kick on when the heat pump is not performing at normal levels. You may also need an auxiliary heater to run during the defrost cycle when the heating mode is reversed to de-ice the outdoor coils. This is why you might see what appears to be smoke during the defrost cycle, which should only last for 15 minutes or less.

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How long can I expect my new heating and air conditioning system to last?

A good heating and air conditioning system should last anywhere from 10 to 20 years, but this can vary depending on the type of system you have and other factors. Routine maintenance and proper installation are also both key factors in ensuring that you get the most out of your investment.

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What can I expect when having a new system installed in my home?

This all depends on what type of system you currently have in place. If you need a new forced air system, you will need to have ductwork installed for new installations and replacements, depending on the condition of the current air ducts. At Comfort Flow, you can rely on our technicians to adequately assess your current ductwork and make sure you get the right design and size for the new system. We also remove the old system for you. Ductless mini splits will not require ductwork, and radiant floors require piping to be installed underneath your flooring. Geothermal heat pumps are a little more extensive and may require drilling or digging up your property to install the pipes underground.

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How can I lower my utility bills with a new heating and air conditioning system?

You would be surprised at how much more efficient a new heater or air conditioner can save you. New systems with higher SEER and HPSF ratings could save you a bundle each year, which adds up over time. Keep in mind that installing a more efficient system will only provide savings if your home is properly insulated and sealed.

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What does SEER stand for?

Every new heating or cooling system on the market has an efficiency rating that determines how much fuel is actually turned into usable energy. For instance, an AFUE rating is used for heating systems—mostly furnaces and boilers—and if a model has a 90% AFUE rating it means that 90% of the fuel is used as energy. Look for anything above ninety percent if you want an efficient system. SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) ratings are used for air conditioning systems, and rather than percentages, they rated by a number. Anything above 13 will give you better energy savings.

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What does HPSF stand for?

HPSF (heating seasonal performance factor) ratings are used for air source heat pumps, but some heat pumps will use both the AFUE and SEER since they provide both heating and cooling. Ask one of our friendly staff members if you would like to know more about comparing the different efficiency ratings.

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How does a heat pump heat and cool the home?

A heat pump can heat and cool your home by using an outdoor compressor and indoor coils to draw in the air from outside and use efficiently for indoor comfort. In the summer, the refrigerant cools the warm air coming into the home, and in the winter, this process is reversed.

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How will my HVAC contractor know what size system is right for my home?

A qualified HVAC contractor should assess your home by factoring the square footage, location, number of windows and doors, and many other factors. All of this information is used to determine the load calculation and proper size of the system. If your existing equipment was improperly sized or installed, you may need adjustments or a different size to meet your actual needs.

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Why are some rooms in my home too hot or too cold?

Most likely, you have an airflow issue, which can be caused by a number of factors. Dirty air filters, blocked vents, or dirty evaporator coils are some of the common culprits. If you have a forced air system, you could also have an issue with the air pressure inside the ductwork due to poor design or leaky ducts. Call Comfort Flow to help you get the right solution for hot and cold spots in your home.

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Why does my heater and air conditioner need to be tuned-up at different times of the year?

Most industry experts recommend that you get a tune-up at least once a year. Ideally, you should schedule your annual maintenance exam twice a year if you have heating and air conditioning. Scheduling before the heating or cooling season begins will give your technician an opportunity to fully inspect your system to look for any warning signs and make all necessary repairs and adjustments. This will help to ensure that your system will perform throughout the season, and it will also help extend the life of your system. Call us if you have questions or would like to schedule your yearly tune-up.

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Can a programmable thermostat help me save energy?

Yes, most certainly a programmable thermostat is a great way to save energy. By setting the thermostat to automatically set back temperatures according to your schedule, you aren’t using energy to heat or cool your home when you are away or asleep.

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How can I help maintain my forced air furnace?

One of the most important homeowner tasks for forced air systems is to ensure that there’s proper airflow at all times. This means you should change air filters once a month, make sure nothing is blocking vents, and keep your furnace room clean. You should also have your furnace serviced by a professional at least once a year, preferably before the heating season begins.

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What are some ways that I can help extend the life of my heat pump?

Like a forced air furnace, routine, professional maintenance for your heat pump or central AC will help extend the life of your system. You can help by maintaining proper airflow, which means you should make sure nothing is blocking the outdoor unit, such as dirt, bushes, yard clippings and other debris. Ask a technician for more tips on how to clean the unit since you can easily damage the fins on the outdoor unit.

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How do I know when it’s time to replace my furnace?

Calling a professional HVAC contractor is the best way to determine whether or not it is time to replace your furnace. However, there are some early warning signs:

  • Furnace doesn’t provide enough heat

  • Frequent repair needs

  • Delayed ignition (you will hear loud banging noises when the furnace turns on)

  • Decreased efficiency over time

Call Comfort Flow and have one of our technicians assess your furnace to help you decide. Sometimes, it is more cost-effective to replace rather than repair.

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How do I know which heating and AC system is right for me?

Finding the right heating or AC system for your home will depend on several factors. Your HVAC contractor will know how to determine the right type and size for your home. Even if you are replacing an older system, you may find that it is more cost-effective to switch to a different type of system. Call Comfort Flow for all your heating and cooling installation and replacement needs.

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