Category Archives: HVAC

4 HVAC Smells Not to Ignore

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Have you noticed an unusual smell coming from your HVAC system – either from the unit itself or the vents? Until now the system has circulated clean, odorless air throughout your house.

You’re concerned and have questions. Does this smell indicate a problem? Is it a health risk? It’s not uncommon the first time your system is turned on for the season to have an odor. This is normal when switching from heating to air conditioning. Some bad aromas though require urgent attention. Here are four reasons why the HVAC system might be producing an unpleasant smell or stench.

Problem 1: Mildew or Mold

Have you noticed a musty smell emanating from your vents? It’s possible there is mold growth within the ductwork. There’s condensation within the unit, and when moisture doesn’t drain properly, it can migrate into the ducts and create mold growth. Moisture trapped in the AC unit can rapidly grow into harmful bacteria and distribute spores and mold while it runs. This not only creates an unpleasant smell throughout your home, it can also trigger allergies and worsen asthma symptoms.

Pro Tip: An HVAC professional can find the source of the buildup, clean it up, and ensure the unit provides clean air.

Problem 2: Burning Smell

Electrical odors are one of the most common, and worrisome HVAC smells. There could be a wiring issue, a circuit board malfunction, or your motor may be burning out. A dirty air filter can also restrict air flow and overheat electrical components. If the burning odor is continuous, it may indicate a mechanical issue with the AC fan or compressor.

Pro Tip: If you’re not a professional electrician, don’t try to fix the problem yourself! Turn off the AC unit and call your HVAC expert right away.

Problem 3: Refrigerant Leak

Are you smelling something like nail polish remover in your home air? Have you also noticed that your air conditioner is not cooling your home even though the fans are blowing? A refrigerant leak can create a smell like acetone that permeates your indoor air. If your system is old or hasn’t been properly maintained, the AC coil may have developed cracks or small holes. A refrigerant leak can decrease the performance of your unit, increase energy consumption, and release hazardous chemicals into the environment.

Pro Tip: If you suspect a leak, leave the inspection to professionals trained in safe refrigerant handling practices.

Problem 4: Rotten Smells

Rotten smells may be the result of dead rodents, lizards, birds, or other critters stuck in the air conditioning system. Over time, animals can decay and emit unpleasant odors. And turning on the AC discharges the foul smell into your home.

Pro Tip: A technician can locate the specific duct where the stench is and remove the critter, checking ductwork and sealing entry points.

Early detection and preventative maintenance are the best ways to avoid foul odors and keep your HVAC system running properly. Next time you smell an unpleasant odor in your home, call Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating at 480-968-5652.

3 Common HVAC System Myths

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You probably know the basic components of your HVAC system – an air conditioner, heating (in the form of a heat pump or furnace), vents, ductwork, and a thermostat. Yet, you may not be as savvy when it comes to how HVAC systems actually work or what they require to function properly. There are common misconceptions that many homeowners share. At Bruce’s, we’re here to dispel these myths and provide the facts to enable you to gain the maximum comfort and efficiency from your system.

Myth #1: You only need to get an HVAC tune up every two to five years.

Do you think HVAC systems don’t need yearly maintenance? Think again! The fact is your system needs to have regular servicing, including tune ups, inspections, and cleanings. If you skip regular maintenance, you may be surprised to find yourself with a system that loses function during the hottest time of the year—just when you need it most.

Pro Tip: Spring is an optimal time for HVAC maintenance. Call Bruce’s today to schedule a tune up of your system.

Myth #2: Your House Cools Down Faster by Turning Down Your Thermostat to the Lowest Setting

Are you enticed to turn your thermostat to the lowest setting to quickly cool your home? Unfortunately, air conditioners don’t work like that. Your AC will run continuously wasting costly energy and possibly damaging the HVAC compressor which can shorten its lifespan. You want your home to be cool and comfortable, not freezing cold.

Pro Tip: To stay comfortable and save money this summer, follow the US Department of Energy guidelines by setting your thermostat to 78 degrees when you are home.

Myth #3: It’s Common to See Ice on Your AC Unit

You’d think because an air conditioner sends out cold air, it would be natural for some ice to show up on the unit. But ice is actually an indicator of a problem. Typically, ice buildup on a unit means either a clogged filter, dirty evaporator coil, or a refrigerant issue.

Pro Tip: Dirty air filters can sometime block air from returning to the inside unit, causing ice to form. Try changing your air filter to increase airflow as a simple troubleshooting technique.

Rely on Bruce’s Air Conditioning and Heating – Your Local HVAC Expert

Bruce’s technicians are here to help with HVAC maintenance, repairs, and installations. We’ve heard all the misconceptions before and are happy to provide clear, understandable answers to all your questions.

Presidents’ Day White House HVAC Fun Facts

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To commemorate Presidents’ Day 2021, we pulled together some interesting White House HVAC facts and trivia that you may find quite intriguing. Enjoy!

  • The First White House Heating system was a Pettibone furnace, installed in 1801, while James Madison was in office.
  • The first central heating system was installed in 1837.
  • President Polk added a heating system expansion in 1845 to help keep the second-floor rooms warm and cozy during the winter months.
  • President Taylor added onto that heating system by bringing it into the offices and the family’s living quarters and basement in 1850.
  • In 1853, President Pierce added a hot water furnace. This was a very early example of an efficiency upgrade.
  • During the 1860s, President Lincoln continued the HVAC expansion in the White House by adding a gas heating system.
  • An early and experimental form of air conditioning was installed into President Garfield’s bedroom to help him heal after he was shot in the summer of 1881. The air conditioner used electric blowers that forced air through a long, iron box encased with cotton screens.
  • In 1910, President Taft installed another early AC system which cooled the air using ice blocks in the attic of the White House. It wasn’t successful, so it was quickly removed.
  • After a fire damaged the West Wing in 1929, a major air conditioning upgrade began. This is considered the first central AC system in the White House.
  • More air conditioning units were added throughout the private quarters on the second floor of the White House during the FDR administration.
  • President Nixon maintained such a cold temperature inside the White House, he kept a fireplace burning throughout the summer.
  • During his time in office, President Trump felt that the White House had inadequate air conditioning, and replaced the 27-year-old system with a new high-efficiency system.

Presidential-Level HVAC Service for You and Your Family

No, you don’t have to be the leader of the free world to get quality HVAC service. Simply call the experts at Bruce’s Air Conditioning and Heating today to schedule a visit by one of our experts.
Happy President’s Day!

How to Hire an HVAC Company

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In Arizona, we’re known for our spectacular weather. But we still get chilly temperature dips in the winter, and of course, summers can be brutal. Naturally, you rely on your home’s HVAC system to keep you comfortable throughout the year. This means having a reliable source for both regular HVAC maintenance and unexpected repairs. Regardless of the size, brand, or type of system you have, you don’t want to take chances with a less than professional HVAC company. Before you schedule service with any service provider, it’s just common sense to follow these tips:

Check Out the Company’s Website

These days, an online presence is essential for any HVAC company. Take a look at their website, read their blog posts, and find out about their services. Do you see a professional site or lots of typos, grainy images, and outdated information? A website is often a reflection of how a business is being managed.

Research the HVAC Company’s Reputation

A qualified HVAC company will have plenty of experience and a proven track record of success. This means happy customers who leave online reviews. Yelp, the Better Business Bureau, and Google Reviews should all be consistently favorable.

Ask about Credentials

So, their website looks good, and there are some positive reviews. The next step is to find out about their credentials. Credible HVAC service providers will always be licensed and insured. This information should be available on their website. You can also call to ask if licenses and policies are kept up to date. Copies of documents should be made available upon request.

Get an Estimate

Service rates can vary widely amongst HVAC companies. While you want to choose a quality company, you also want to pay a fair price for service. Trustworthy service providers will provide you with a clear, written estimate for work that needs to be done before starting.
At Bruce’s, we understand just how important your HVAC system is to you and your family. This is why we’re here to provide you with professional, reliable, friendly, and affordable service.

Call us today at 480-968-5652 to find out more about our services or to get an estimate on repairs, maintenance, or replacement.

Wishing You and Your Family a Happy Holiday

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Christmas 2020 will not be like any other Christmas. But, perhaps even more than ever, it’s important to be grateful this holiday and to appreciate what we all have. At Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating, we wanted to take this opportunity to thank you. It’s our wonderful customers that make our business possible. We appreciate each and every day for you trusting us to be your HVAC service provider.

We know that you have many options when it comes to repairs and installation. We’re thankful to be able to serve you. And, as a reminder, we’re always here to help ensure your home comfort. Even on Christmas day, we can assist with your HVAC needs. Our line is open, and we do understand that HVAC issues can come up at the most challenging of times. If you have a furnace or heat pump-related challenge this holiday, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’re always here with 24/7 emergency service. Call an expert at 480-968-5652.