Category Archives: Air Conditioning

So You Want to Move Your Outside AC Unit?

Does your air conditioner sit in an unsightly location in your yard? Can you hear the whirl of your outdoor unit because it’s just a little too close to your bedroom window? There are actually many reasons why homeowners consider moving their AC unit to a new location on their property. If you’ve been contemplating an HVAC relocation project, you probably have questions. And, we have answers.

How difficult is it to move an AC unit?

Among the issues to consider when relocating an air conditioner is the refrigerant line. Prior to relocation, the refrigerant needs to be pumped out, and then the copper lines have to be either replaced or welded to the length necessary to accommodate the new location. The lines also need to be reconnected to the unit with the refrigerant being pumped back in. Moisture in the lines has to be vacuumed out.

Thermostat wiring is another issue, requiring it to be rerun and secured to the unit. And, of course, the new position for the unit must be leveled, and the system restarted.

In other words, this is not a DIY project!

How much does it cost to relocate an AC unit?

Typically, the cost of relocating an air conditioner runs around $1,000, but pricing varies depending on the specifics of the unit and the location. This is why it’s important to budget for this cost if this is part of a larger remodeling or new addition project. We highly encourage you not to try this project yourself if you want to ensure your system continues to operate at peak efficiency.

Who Should You Hire?

Because AC unit relocation is a multi-step, complex project, you’re smart to call an HVAC contractor with both experience and expertise. At Bruce’s, we’ve helped many homeowners with their HVAC relocation projects. And we can help you, too. Want to learn more? Call us today at 480-968-5652.

Is R22 Still Available?

It has been more than a decade since the start of the gradual phase out of the HVAC refrigerant R22. At the beginning of this year, the phase-out was completed, and now the product is no longer being manufactured in the United States. So, what does all this mean for you?

If you have an older air conditioner, we, at Bruce’s, can still obtain parts for it and currently can still obtain R22 from our vendors. Interestingly, some vendors are actually reclaiming refrigerant from older systems for the purpose of resale. But the larger question is, how long will R22 be available?

While we don’t have an exact answer for you, we can tell you with confidence that there is volatility in the price of R22 due to the very clear supply and demand issue. And ultimately, your best option is to replace your older R22 unit with a newer model that uses the new R410a refrigerant. Not only is a new air conditioner far more efficient, it is better for the environment.

Are you on the fence about replacing your tried and true air conditioner? We suggest you ask yourself the following questions:

  • How long will you be in your home?
  • What is the cost of any needed air conditioning repairs?
  • What is the cost of a new unit?
  • If you’ll be selling your home, could a new system increase its value?
  • What’s your current budget?

Based on your answers, you will likely determine whether or not now is the right time to purchase an air conditioner that uses the new, more environmentally-sound refrigerant. Want to learn more about R22 or get a quote on a new air conditioner? Call Bruce’s today at 480-968-5652. We have answers to help you with this, and all your HVAC-related decisions.

Do You Need Two Air Conditioning Units for Your Home?

Does your home require two air conditioners? It’s a common question that our customers ask – particularly those with two-story homes. If you’ve asked yourself this question, we’ve broken down the advantages and disadvantages of having a two-unit system for your home.

The Advantages

Energy Savings

With one air conditioning unit, your entire home must be cooled to obtain an ideal temperature. With two units, you can control how much energy is being used to keep a room or space comfortable. This means that your system doesn’t have to work as hard to cool your entire home. To put it another way, decreasing the square footage being cooled will lower your energy costs.

Temperature Balance

Two units also enable you to balance the desired temperature in your home. Often, one area of your home will be warmer or more difficult to keep cool than another. If you have a two-story home, you’ve probably noticed that it’s warmer upstairs. Yes, warm air rises.

By having two air conditioning units as part of your HVAC system, you can select different temperatures. For example, you may want to have a cooler temperature upstairs than downstairs.

Backup Protection

While consistent HVAC maintenance can go a long way towards preventing a system failure, they can still happen. With two units, you can rely on one to keep your home cool while the other is being repaired. In Arizona, this means not having to struggle with sweltering heat if you ever have a summer breakdown.

The Disadvantages

Two air conditioning units simply cost more to install and maintain. However, the cost difference is often not as much as you think. Because each unit is cooling a smaller amount of square footage, its size can be smaller. You’ll also offset the additional costs by adapting your heating and cooling habits to having two units.

What About a Single-Unit Zoned System?

If you’re considering the addition of a new air conditioner, another alternative is a single-unit zoned system. A zoned system controls the temperature differently in specific areas of your home. This enhanced control is managed through dampers inside your ductwork which can change the flow of cool or warm air to different areas of your home. The cost of a single-unit zoned system is more than a standard non-zoned system, but it can significantly decrease your energy costs in the long run.

Want to learn more about the advantages of two-unit and single-unit zoned systems? Call Bruce’s today for a free quote at 480-968-5652.

How Air Conditioning Has Changed Since 1972 – The Year We Started

At Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating, we’re proud of our reputation as a leader in commercial and residential HVAC services for nearly 50 years. Of course, much has changed since we first opened our doors. There have been tremendous technical advances in air conditioning. Here are just a few of the amazing innovations that improve the comfort of homes and businesses.

1970

The first ductless air conditioning systems are invented, serving as an alternative to portable air conditioners attached to windows. These enable air conditioners to be placed in locations other than windows.

1975

The US government begins their investment in HVAC research and innovation. Propelled by the energy crisis of the ‘70s, this leads to the first national standards for HVAC equipment.

1978

The heat pump is invented. The air-to-air heat pump is used in both heating and air conditioning systems.

1987

The UN Montreal Protocol is created to protect the ozone layer. The international treaty was signed by participating countries to begin the phasing out of use of ozone depleting chemicals, including the ubiquitous coolant – Freon.

1987

The Seasonal Energy Efficient Ration (SEER) measurement of energy efficiency is rolled out for HVAC systems. This is the first national standard for efficiency and is still used today.

1994

Freon is officially linked to ozone depletion, kicking off a ban around the world. The US government launches millions of dollars to ramp up research on improvements to air conditioning and refrigeration.

1996

All HVAC manufacturers in the US are required to switch to the environmentally-friendly coolant R134a.

2000

R410a is introduced as a more environmentally-friendly coolant.

2005

The combination of technology and improved coolants have measurably improved HVAC system efficiency by more than 30 percent.

2007

Nearly 90 percent of all American homes now have air conditioning. Compare this with just 10 percent in 1965.

2010

HVAC is connected to the Internet of Things (IoT). HVAC systems with sensors can now be controlled by internet-enabled devices.

2011

The Nest thermostat is introduced, enabling consumers to monitor their energy usage and adjust their HVAC systems from their smart phones. Nest is rapidly acquired by Google.

2015

The US Department of Energy starts funding into research of non-vapor compression technologies for HVAC systems. This could mean a reduction of energy use by more than 50 percent.

2020

The innovation continues in the HVAC industry. From greater integration with other smart home technologies to leveraging artificial intelligence to optimize energy efficiency, the advancements are nothing short of amazing.

Through the years, Bruce’s has stayed up-to-date on all the advances in air conditioning, offering the most advanced products on the market. Call us today to learn more about what Bruce’s can do for you

Selecting the Right American Standard Air Conditioner

Whether you’re shopping for an air conditioner for your existing home or new construction, we’re here to help. At Bruce’s, we’re proud to be an American Standard Customer Care dealer serving Tempe, Arizona and the entire Phoenix metro area. As HVAC experts, we will take the time to learn about your needs and assist you in choosing the perfect unit. To help you in this process, the following is some general guidance to help you with your decision.

Types of Central Air Conditioners

Central air conditioners can be either a split-system unit or a packaged unit. In a split-system unit, you’ll find an outdoor metal cabinet which contains both the condenser and the compressor and an indoor cabinet that contains the evaporator. With some split-system air conditioner systems, the indoor cabinet also includes the furnace or the indoor portion of the heat pump.

A packaged central air conditioner has the evaporator, condenser and compressor all in one cabinet, usually located on the roof or on a concrete slab near a home’s foundation. Air supply and return ducts come from indoors through the walls or roof to connect with the outdoor unit. Packaged air conditioners can include heating coils or a natural gas furnace, too.

Efficiency

When choosing a model, you will want to consider its efficiency. Consider that air conditioning consumes greater than 2,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity each year. So, efficiency is key. Today’s quality air conditioners, such as those from American Standard, use 30 to 50 percent less energy to produce the same amount of cooling as air conditioners made thirty years ago. Even models that are 10 years old may cost 20 to 40 percent more in cooling energy costs than a newer unit. The higher the SEER rating (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) of a unit, the greater the efficiency. American Standard offers units with a variety of SEER ratings to match your budget.

Sizing and Installation

Our skilled, experienced technicians will help you determine the best size and installation for your home. We offer free quotes. Remember, too large a unit will be more costly to operate and may not adequately remove humidity. Too small a unit will not be able to cool your home sufficiently. Improper location, insufficient insulation and inferior ductwork installation can also significantly diminish efficiency and home comfort. This is why it’s important to work with an experienced team of professionals.

Other Features to Consider

Today’s air conditioners also offer a range of advanced features that increase their functionality. These include:

  • Variable speed air handler
  • Fan-only switch
  • Filter check light
  • Automatic-delay fan switch
  • AccuComfort™ technology
  • AccuClean™ air cleaner technology

Make sure to ask about these and other features that may be included in any model you’re considering.

Let Us Help You

At Bruce’s, getting a free quote on a new air conditioner is only a call away. We’ll work directly with you to ensure you get the right unit for your home and budget. Call us at 480-968-5652.