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New Home Construction Planned for 2019? Don’t Forget the Importance of Your HVAC

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When it comes to new home construction, Phoenix is one of the busiest cities in the United States. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Phoenix added over half a million new residents between 2010 and 2017, bringing the total population to 4.7 million people. The forecast is for a steady increase in population over the next decade, making Phoenix one of the fastest growing regions in the U.S. With this exponential growth, one thing is for certain – all those incoming families need homes to live in and plenty of air conditioning.

New Construction Is Booming

In terms of building and new home starts, The Phoenix Business Journal reports, “The metro Phoenix area is up 18 percent in single-family permits from this time last year.” That amounts to thousands of new homes being built when compared with 2017. If you are in the process of having a new house built, or buying a new home for your family, it is a good idea to plan ahead and ensure your HVAC needs are given the attention they deserve.

Is Not Always a Top Priority for Developers

When it comes to designing new homes, architects and builders tend to focus on current trends and eye-catching options like open floor plans, larger chef-friendly kitchens and family great rooms. Formal dining rooms and separate living rooms are becoming relics of the past. Unseen (and unsexy) HVAC systems often take a back seat in terms of design and specifications. However, when the summer temperatures hit triple digits, nothing will seem more important than the air conditioning in your new home. Unfortunately, as HVAC experts, we see firsthand, the design flaws and builder’s mistakes after new homes are built.

Consult with Our Experts Before Construction Begins

If you are in the design phase of your new home project, consider giving us a call before construction begins. Our staff has the experience, knowledge and expertise that builders quite simply don’t have. Sometimes a simple design or engineering recommendation can save loads of trouble and expense down the road. Also, if you are buying a new home, it is a great idea to have us perform an inspection before you purchase the home, so we can inform you of the state and efficiency of the HVAC system. We can help you in all phases of assessing, choosing and designing an HVAC system, including:

  • Choosing the Right HVAC System for Your New Home – With so many manufacturers and options, getting the right model and style of air conditioner can be extremely challenging. Our professionals will explain the pros and cons of various systems and help you sort through the mountains of data and specs. We will explain it all, so you can make the right decision for your home.
  • Energy Saving HVAC Systems – As the cost of electric power goes up, choosing energy efficient HVAC equipment becomes critical. The Energy Star rating is the government’s way of indicating energy efficiency. The cost of your new HVAC system is substantial. Choosing an energy efficient system will help save you money in the long run.
  • HVAC System Location – If you’re new to Arizona, you may have noticed air conditioners located on rooftops. Deciding where to locate you HVAC system is crucial. Rooftop or ground level AC systems have different advantages and disadvantages.
  • Heat Pump or Furnace? – People move to Phoenix because the winters are mild. However, choosing between a heat pump and furnace is one of the many decisions you will need to make.
  • Checking the “V” in HVAC – New homes are more air tight than ever before. There is an art and science involved in creating proper flow and ventilation throughout new triple insulated homes.
  • Ductwork Is Critical to Effectively Cooling and Heating Your New Home – Choosing an HVAC contractor who understands the importance of your entire system, including installation of effective and sound ductwork, is crucial. Too often, unseen parts of the HVAC system don’t get the attention they deserve.

The Right HVAC System Will Give You Years of Comfort in Your New Home
Choosing the best HVAC system for your new home and the right contractor for installation are crucial decisions you’ll need to make as you design your new home. Why not give us a call at 480-968-5652 and we’ll be happy to help you decide what’s right for you.

Optimize Your Programmable Thermostat Settings for the Cold Weather Months

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Cooler temperatures are always a welcome relief in the Valley of the Sun. Yet, it can get downright chilly in the greater Phoenix, AZ area, especially during the evening and early morning hours. With the winter months here, it’s a good time to reset your programmable thermostat. This will ensure you’re optimizing your heating system for both cost and comfort.

When You’re at Home

Setting your thermostat for 68 degrees when you’re awake and at home is energy efficient and a comfortable temperature for most individuals. You’ll feel warm without raising heating bills. Consider the hours when this setting is appropriate. This likely will include before and after work, as well as on weekends.

When You’re Asleep

When you’re sleeping, you’re not likely to notice a slight drop in temperature. Even if you’re sensitive to colder indoor temperatures, an extra blanket on the bed is usually enough to maintain comfort without cranking up the heat. Consider lowering your thermostat setting by five to 10 degrees for the eight or so hours that you’re in bed asleep.

When You’re Away

You can save as much as 15 percent on your heating bills in a single season by lowering your thermostat setting by 10 degrees for eight or more hours each day. In other words, programming a lower temperature for normal work or school hours can save you big money. If schedules are consistent, you can set your thermostat to kick in 15 minutes before you arrive home. You won’t notice the difference at home, but you sure will on your monthly bill!

Is It Time to Replace Your Thermostat?

If you’re still struggling with an outdated thermostat that you can’t program, it’s time to consider a newer model. Thermostat technology has advanced dramatically in the last 20 years, and it’s easier than ever to reduce your energy consumption while still maintaining a comfortable home. Call the experts at Bruce’s to learn more about the installation of a new programmable thermostat.

Heating that Stubbornly Cold Room

This entry was posted in Heating on by .

Although the fall months are ideal in terms of temperature, Arizona weather can turn downright chilly in the winter. Each year there always are at least a few cold snaps that warrant flipping your thermostat to the ‘heat’ setting. Ideally, your heater should consistently warm every room of your home. Yet, this isn’t always the case if you’re struggling with an HVAC system that delivers unbalanced heat.

If you struggle with one or two rooms that always seem chilly regardless of the temperature you set your thermostat, it’s time to determine what is causing your system’s unbalanced heat distribution.

Thermostat Issues

If you’re still using that decades old thermostat, it may not be able to effectively monitor the temperature in a far bedroom or bathroom. Setting the thermostat to compensate for temperature and distance is one solution to this problem, but it will cost you with increased energy consumption. A wiser choice is to update your system with a smart thermostat which can effectively regulate temperatures throughout different zones of your home. Call Bruce’s today to speak with an expert who can share with you the many benefits of making this simple upgrade to your system.

It Could Be the Ducts

After heat is generated by your furnace or heat pump, it’s delivered via your duct system. If ducts are leaky, hot air will escape into your attic space or behind walls, wasting valuable energy. And, if your ductwork is improperly sized or was never installed correctly, you’ll also experience temperature variation issues – especially in the rooms that are the furthest away from the heat source. If you haven’t had your duct system inspected, it can be well worth the effort to do so.

A Failing System

Is your heating system as old as your home? Houses built in the early 1980s or earlier often have the original furnace, but they can be highly inefficient. It may be time to consider replacing your unit with an energy efficient heat pump or an EPA certified Energy Star furnace. Home heating technology has improved over the last several decades, and problems with unbalanced heat can be solved with a new system.

Why continue to struggle with uneven heat? Call the experts at Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating today to solve the problem.

Prepare Your HVAC System for the Holidays

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and you’re likely gearing up for the holiday season. Along with meal planning, gift buying and decorating, it’s a good idea to ensure your HVAC system is ready for the festivities. With these simple strategies, you can be confident that you won’t have a malfunction that ruins your celebration.

Schedule a Seasonal Tune-up

First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure your system is functioning properly. Don’t get caught off-guard without heat on Thanksgiving Day or before your holiday open house. You may not have turned on your heater yet this season, so take this opportunity to call the experts to inspect and tune up your system. Any problems can be identified and fixed to prevent the unexpected from happening.

Replace or Clean Air Filter

When was the last time you replaced or cleaned your HVAC air filter? This one simple task can not only improve the quality of your inside air, it will extend the life of your system. Don’t forget to carefully choose the right size of filter to maintain optimal air flow.

Learn How to Use Your Programmable Thermostat

It’s likely that you already have a programmable thermostat on your wall. But, do you know how to use it to effectively to control the temperature in your home? If not, take a few minutes to learn how to program temperature settings. Set the temperature lower for when you’re sleeping or away from home. And, set it to turn on an hour before you awake or get home from work.

Clear Space Around Heating Equipment and Vents

For most of the year, you’re not thinking about heating. It’s just too darn hot here in the Valley of the Sun! Yet, you may need to flip the thermostat to heat at some point during the holidays. Before you do, you’ll want to make sure all flammable materials, including books, blankets, decorations and area rugs are away from heating equipment and vents.

Check Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

House fires and carbon monoxide leaks increase greatly during the winter months. Take a few moments to make sure your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are functioning and replace batteries if necessary. Remember, carbon monoxide isn’t detectable by sight or smell.

Your Holiday HVAC Services Partner

At Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating, we’re here for you throughout the holidays and all year long. With 24/7 emergency service, we’re only a call away when you need us.

What You Need to Know about HVAC Filters

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With any forced-air HVAC system, air filters play a key role. Thus, it’s important to do more than just grab the first filter you see off the store shelf. Yes, there are different types available and getting familiar with them can help you identify what you need to make a smart choice.

Fiberglass/Synthetic Filters

This type of filter is probably what you’re most familiar with. These are the inexpensive, disposable options that are widely available in home-improvement retailers and even grocery stores. Fiberglass or synthetic filters are relatively efficient – catching up to 80 percent of particles that are 50 microns and larger. They can effectively minimize the buildup of dust and dirt on heat exchangers, fan motors and other surfaces of your HVAC system.

Polyester Filters

Made from higher quality material, polyester filters trap and remove 80 to 95% of particles 5 microns or larger. With their greater effectiveness comes a higher price. Expect to pay approximately four times more for a polyester filter than a standard fiberglass/synthetic filter.

Pleated Filters

For even greater efficiency, choose a pleated filter that traps particulates 0.3 micron in size, including bacteria and viruses. Pleated filters also last longer than fiberglass/synthetic filters.

Electrostatic Filters

Electrostatic filters leverage the innovation of self-charging fibers to attract and remove particles from your air. Both disposable and washable electrostatic filters are available.

HEPA Filters

High efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters offer high filtration capabilities, capturing 99% of particles 0.3 microns or larger. It’s important to consider that these filters are excellent at removing indoor pollutants and creating an easier-to-breath-in household environment. However, they can reduce your HVAC system’s air flow, resulting in higher utility costs.

Choose the Right Size

Along with type, you also need to consider size when it comes to HVAC filters. You’ll want to choose one that fits into the filter cabinet correctly to ensure there are no airflow obstructions that could hinder system performance. The most common sizes are:

10 X 20, 14 X 20, 16 X 24, 18 X 30, 12 X 12, 14 X 24, 16 X 25, 20 X 20, 12 X 20, 14 X 25, 18 X 18, 20 X 24, 12 X 24, 14 X 30, 18 X 20, 20 X 25, 12 X 30, 15 X 20, 18 X 24, 20 X 30, 12 X 36, 16 X 20, 18 X 25, 4 X 24 and 25 X 25

Change Filters Regularly

The importance of changing HVAC filters on a regular basis cannot be overstated. Over time, filters become clogged with pollutants – particularly here in Arizona. Forgetting to change your filter can cause costly airflow obstructions and can even damage your system. Stick to a set schedule of replacing or cleaning your HVAC filter at least once a month.

Get HVAC Filter Help

Have questions or need help with your HVAC system? Call the experts at Bruce’s Air Conditioning & Heating today at 480-968-5652.