• What Was Life Like Before Air Conditioning Systems?

    It can be hard to imagine a hot Florida summer day without the cooling effects of air conditioning in our vehicles, homes, and work. Yet, for practical purposes, air conditioning systems as we know them today have not really been standard comfort for that long.

    What was life like for people who lived in Florida before homes had air conditioning? Let’s take a look back to see what events helped pave the way for modern air conditioner systems. Then we will look at what methods they used to stay cool and survive the heat.

    Guy Sweating

    The Mid to Late 1800s

    A lot was going on in the mid-1800s. To begin with, Florida went from being a territory of the United States to becoming an actual state on March 3, 1845. Florida was the 27 th state to become part of the growing and expanding U.S.

    In 1851, Floridian Dr. John Gorrie was granted a patent for the first-ever ice-making machine. The machine would start to produce ice commercially in just a few short years. His invention would also result in a new appliance for the home: the icebox.

    Another new invention that came about in 1882 was the invention of the electric fan. While fans had been around for quite some time, they had to be operated either manually, using steam power, or by burning oil or kerosene.

    Old Fans

    The Early to Mid-1900s

    The first air conditioner was invented in 1902 in New York by engineer Willis Carrier. Mr. Carrier was looking for an effective way to remove humidity from a building used to for publishing. Inadvertently, his invention not only solved that problem but also created artificially cooled air to help keep workers cool, too.

    In 1904, those attending the World’s Fair in St. Louis were in for a new treat: the concept of indoor cooling. The Missouri State Building was cooled using Mr. Carrier’s invention.

    Mr. Carrier redefined his invention in 1922 when he developed and created new centrifugal chillers. These new chillers improved the efficiency of the air conditioner, while at the same time reduced the costs to build cooling systems.

    In 1928, chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) refrigerants are synthesized at General Motors by Robert McNary, Thomas Midgley, and Albert Henne during a project for Frigidaire. The result of their efforts was the creation of the first non-flammable refrigerant chemicals that could be used in refrigerators and in air conditioners.

    Old Air Conditioning

    Frigidaire released the first cooling units for rooms in 1929, largely thanks to the creation of CFCs. General Electric also designed their own cooling units and built 32 of them between 1930 and 1931.

    In 1931, Frigidaire expanded upon its AC production and developed the first-ever central cooling systems for homes. In the same year, two inventors, J.Q. Sherman and H.H. Schultz, filed for a patent for window air conditioning units, which were released in 1932.

    The creation of a low-cost window air conditioner unit occurred in 1947, thanks to engineer Henry Galson. That same year, 43,000 of these new units were sold to homeowners.

    The Mid to Late 1900s

    Advances in air conditioning designs continued to improve in the mid-1900s. New homes were being built with central air conditioning systems . The prices on window units continued to drop, allowing people with older homes but no ductwork to also cool their homes.

    In the 1960s, most homes had either central air conditioning or window units to help stay cool year round. By the end of the 1960s, people were starting to migrate to new areas of the country. Two of the states that saw the most population growth during this time were Florida and Arizona.

    Then the energy crisis of the 1970s hit. The U.S. Department of Energy developed different programs that required energy improvements be made in appliances, including air conditioners. Since that time, improvements have gradually been made to make air conditioning more energy efficient.

    New Air Conditioning

    In the 1990s, concerns over greenhouse gases like CFC began to become more mainstream. Fortunately, other synthetic coolants were able to be invented that are eco-friendly and still help keep people’s homes cool.

    By 2000, air conditioning units being built were more energy-efficient and eco-friendly compared to units built in 1990. On average, the units built in 2000 were as much as 50% more energy efficient. These improvements have continued through today, with 2018 units being more energy efficient compared to models built in 2008.

    How People Stayed Cool Without Air Conditioning

    As we saw, the widespread of use of air conditioning by homeowners did not really start to happen until the 1960s. Even though air conditioning was essentially available since 1930 for homeowners, it was still an expensive luxury most people could not afford. Instead, they turned to other ways to stay cool.

    Homes built during the mid-1800s to mid-1900s were designed differently. One key feature was the use of high vaulted ceilings. On hotter days, the warmer air would rise and collect at the ceiling level and go out vents or windows. By having higher ceilings, the air below would be cooler.

    Another feature found in homes during this time were windows on opposite sides from each other. By opening windows on opposite sides of the home, it created a natural breeze and air flow. In two-story homes, people would open all of the upstairs windows to create air flow and allow the heat from the lower floor to escape.

    Patio with Table and Chairs

    One key feature found in homes from this period were wide, long, and covered front and back porches on the north and south sides of the homes. The porches provided sufficient shade from the sun and were much cooler than staying indoors on hot summer days.

    Homeowners also planted trees on the east and west sides of the home to provide shade. Mature trees would help stop direct sunlight from shining into the home and help keep it somewhat cooler inside.

    In the evenings, it was common for people to sleep downstairs, if they had a two-story home, because the upstairs bedrooms were too warm. In homes with basements, these were used more frequently in the summer months since they were naturally cooler.

    Aside from how homes were built, people became resourceful to escape the heat. People would go to the movies more often in the summer as most theaters in the 1920s and onward had central air conditioning. They could enjoy watching the latest Hollywood films in the cool indoor air and get a brief reprieve from hot summer days and nights.

    In the 1920s, the prices of electric fans dropped and were much more affordable. Many homes started using window box fans and ceiling fans to help create air flows to cool the indoor air.

    Another effective cooling method was to make a swamp cooler using the scientific principle of evaporative cooling. People would hang up wet sheets and clothing inside the home. As air blew on it, either naturally from a cross breeze in the home or from fans, it would cause the water to evaporate into the air and lower the surrounding air temperature.

    People also would order extra ice for their icebox and place one block into a steel tub. They would set up a fan next to the tub and turn it on. As the ice melted, it released cold air. By using the fan to circulate this air in the room, it essentially became an air conditioner thanks to evaporative cooling.

    In addition to these methods, people would take sheets and clothing and place them in the freezer to cool them down before using them. Some people would even freeze wet sheets before hanging them up as part of their indoor swamp cooler to make the cooling effects last longer.

    In the 1950s and the 1960s, attic fans were very popular. These types of fans were also referred to as whole house fans because they were installed in the attic. They would suck up the hot air out of the home and vent it outdoors through the attic. Even after central and window air conditioning became more standard, attic fans were still used to help remove hot air from homes.

    Eventually, as air conditioning systems became more affordable, people did not have to worry about coming up with creative ways to remain cool on hot summer days. The only time they would have to worry is when their air conditioner stopped working.

    Air Conditioning Technician Working on Job

    How to Stay Cool Year Round Today

    Homeowners today rely on their air conditioning systems to stay cool year round. Even in the middle of winter in Central Florida, we can have periods of heat with temperatures in the upper 80s and low 90s. One mistake homeowners make is not performing semi-annual maintenance on their home’s heating and cooling system.

    Skipping maintenance is not good because it can lead to unexpected breakdowns and emergency service calls. In addition, systems that are not well-maintained have a much shorter lifespan and have to be replaced more often.

    To ensure your home remains cool and you do not have any surprise problems with your home’s air conditioning, please feel free to call Air Rescue at (813) 612-5600 to schedule preventative maintenance today!

    We also offer heat and air conditioning repair services, new HVAC system installations, air duct cleaning, repair and replacement services , and more for homes and businesses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, and the surrounding areas.

    Sources

    1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/fan_(machine)

    2. https://www.energy.gov/articles/history-air-conditioning

    3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/air_conditioning

  • How Do Pets Contribute to Indoor Air Pollution?

    From children of all ages to adults and seniors, pets play an important role in the family dynamic. There are benefits to being a pet owner, such as having a companion if you are single, or helping to lower stress and blood pressure. In seniors, the role of pets helps prevent depression and can help avoid the frustrations of aging since there is a furry friend that requires their attention.

    cat and dog sleeping together

    However, what many people may not realize is that pets and indoor air quality go hand-in-hand . Pets shed hair and skin cells (dander), just like humans do. Excess pet dander and hair in the home lowers the overall air quality. If you or someone in the home suffers from allergies, you may notice you are sneezing more often, experiencing itchy or running eyes more frequently, or having problems breathing.

    Unlike humans, pets tend to shed much more. Pet hair and dander can get into all sorts of places too, such as:

    • On Furniture
    • Under Sofa and Chair Cushions
    • In Bedding
    • Under Beds
    • In Closets
    • In Cracks and Crevices
    • Along Baseboards
    • In Air Ducts

    Keeping pet hair and dander to a minimum requires pet parents to perform some added housekeeping chores more often. Ideally, pet owners should sweep, dust, and vacuum at least weekly. All bedding should also be laundered on a weekly basis.

    In addition, your home’s air conditioning and heating filters need to be replaced more often. Pet hair and dander are easily blown around the home and sucked into the return air vent. The filter blocks most of this but does become dirtier faster.

    dirty air filter

    As a result, we highly recommend checking your AC filter once a month and replacing it when needed. Even if you have a “pet” air filter installed that says it only needs to be replaced every three months, it does not mean it cannot quickly get clogged with pet hair and dander.

    Clogged Air Filters Increase AC Repair Services

    Dirty and clogged air filters cause your air conditioning to work harder. You may notice a spike in your utility bill because the AC has to run longer to achieve the same cooling effects. Additionally, since the AC is running longer, it places more strain on the unit that can lead to overheating, frozen cooling coils, and a host of other problems.

    Furthermore, this added wear and tear on the system shortens the expected lifespan of the entire system. The same is true during the winter months, here in Tampa, when you might need to turn on the heat to warm up your home. Whether you have a “combo” unit or separate furnace and air conditioning system, clogged air filters damage your home’s HVAC system.

    women hugging a dog

    Clogged Air Filters and AC Ducts

    Pets and air quality issues extend into the ducts running throughout your home. Depending on the age of your home, you may have floor ducts, where the ductwork is under the subflooring or ceiling ducts. With floor ducts, you have other things to worry about with pet ownership aside from pet dander and hair.

    • Toys – Your cat or dog could accidentally drop a toy down through the openings in floor ducts. The toys have your pet’s saliva on them and could even contain food particles, pet dander, pet hair, and bacteria.
    • Pet Food – If pet food falls down into the ductwork, not only does it have bacteria and pet saliva on it, but it can also attract unwanted pests like mice and roaches.
    • Kitty Litter – If your cat likes to bat kitty litter around when using the litter box, and it gets down into your ducts, it could have urine and feces on it. Over time, this can make your house smell like one giant litter box!
    • Dirt – Dogs go in and out of the home and can track dirt, mud, feces, and other such materials into the home on their fur and paws. If they walk over open floor ducts, these things can fall into the ducts. The same is true if you let your cat outside from time to time.

    If your home has floor air ducts, we highly recommend to include an inspection of your ductwork during your annual or bi-annual AC maintenance and tune-up visits. This way, if foreign objects, pet hair, and dander are an issue, you can have them cleaned to help maintain better indoor air quality in your home.

    technician working on air duct

    For ceiling ducts, pet hair and dander can still be a problem. It does not hurt to get annual inspections. During inspections, your AC repair technician will look for gaps, openings, and other areas where the ducts are not properly sealed.

    Improperly sealed ductwork can also contribute to increased air pollution in the home, as well as increase your heating and cooling costs. For instance, if there is a large enough gap in between two duct sections, cooled or heated air is escaping.

    As this air is blown out, it can create a suction force that draws in outdoor air or interior wall air, which can also contain dirt and dust. In homes with pets, pet hair and dander can be blown out of the openings as well as drawn back in, which further reduces indoor air quality.

    In addition, in newer homes, rather than traditional metal ductwork, some builders are opting to use heavy plastic ducts instead. While these certainly cost less, they can easily get punctured, torn, and ripped. This can introduce even more contaminants into the home, including animal dander and hair from outdoor animals that might gain entry through the crawl space under your home!

    two grey mice

    How Duct Sealing Helps Improve Indoor Air Quality

    When your ductwork has been properly sealed by your air duct repair technician, including around the air vents that are in the rooms in your home, there are fewer potential entry points into the home’s cooling and heating system for pet dander, pet hair, and other contaminants.

    With floor ducts, it is highly recommended to have fine mesh screens installed as part of the sealing process. This way, the screens catch pet dander, hair, food, toys, and kitty litter and keep them out of the ducts.

    Other Air Quality Tips for Pet Owners

    Aside from your regular housekeeping chores, there are other things pet owners can do to help reduce the amount of pet hair and dander that gets distributed around the home, into return air vent filters, and ducts.

    • Brush your pets every few days. Pets shed a lot! You would be surprised by how fast a pet brush or comb gets filled with their pet hair. If you get into the habit of brushing your cats or dogs more often, they will have less hair to shed. Plus, your cats or dogs will appreciate the attention they are getting and will start to look forward to “brush-time.”
    • Move pet items away from floor ducts and the return air vent. Keep pet food, water, bedding, litter boxes and other such items away from floor air ducts, as well as the return air vent. Moving these items away will reduce the number of items that get into ducts, as well as sucked into the air filter.
    • Give your dog a bath regularly. Since dogs spend time indoors and outdoors, they can start to smell really bad. Weekly baths not only help keep your dog from stinking but also wash out pet dander and any pet hair you missed during brushings.

    A word about baths and cats: We wouldn’t recommend giving cats a bath—not unless they like playing in the water and are accustomed to it. You can talk to your vet about a waterless shampoo for your cats to help keep them smelling great if they spend any time outdoors.

    cat starring out a window on a rainy day

    We hope these tips and suggestions will help enable you to better control pet dander and pet hair in your home while keeping your home’s AC and heating system running smoothly. If you haven’t had AC maintenance and tuneup service in a while, want to get your ducts inspected, or have questions about duct sealing, please feel free to contact Air Rescue at 813.375.9982 today for service in the entire Tampa Bay area!

  • Proper HVAC Installation Matters

    A new HVAC system represents a big investment, and it’s understandable that some home or business owners will want to cut costs on installation. This can be a grave error if they pick an unqualified contractor to install air conditioning units, as a shoddy installation job can result in long-term problems and expenses.

    hvac technician with safety helmet

    Heating and air conditioning units and their associated ductwork and infrastructure are complex systems that require precise installation. If the job’s not done right, the system won’t perform efficiently and may be more prone to breakage and have a shorter life. Energy Star, a federal program that evaluates appliances for efficiency and environmental impact, estimates that about half of all heating and cooling systems don’t perform as they should because they were improperly installed.

    An HVAC system that’s not providing optimum performance can be costly for home and business owners. HVAC systems account for about 40 percent or more of our energy consumption. Energy Star estimates that improper installation can reduce system efficiency by up to 30 percent .

    monitoring hvac unit

    Qualified air conditioning and heating contractors ensure your system performs at its best by selecting a proper unit and ensuring that the system’s components and infrastructure are properly installed. Here are a few ways trained technicians can ensure your system works properly:

    • Getting the right size unit – Ever try powering a go-kart with a HEMI? How about a Porsche with a lawnmower engine? Size matters when it comes to HVAC units, and choosing an appropriate unit is key to reducing energy costs and ensuring the longevity of your system.

    If your HVAC system is too large, you’ll experience temperature swings and hot and cold spots throughout your home or business, as well as high humidity and over-sized utility bills. If your unit is too small, it will struggle to reach desired temperatures on hot Tampa summer days. The increased workload on the small system will likely cause it to wear out well before its time.

    Qualified contractors will follow Air Conditioning Contractors of America guidelines to determine the heating and cooling load for your home or business. Once that’s done, they’ll select an appropriately sized unit.

    • Duct installation – Your HVAC systems ducts carry the hot or cold air it is generating throughout your home, heating or cooling rooms as needed. Poorly installed ductwork will lose hot or cold air, forcing your system to work harder to achieve desired temperatures. Energy Star estimates that 20 to 30 percent of the air moving through ducts is lost . Poor installation is a cause of this loss, as well as pinhole leaks that can occur in ductwork over time.

    technician fixing pipes

    Qualified contractors will ensure that ductwork is designed and installed in a manner intended to maximize efficiency. They will also seal ducts as needed to prevent leaks. After installation, a good contractor will also inspect the system to ensure that it is airtight.

    • Getting the refrigerant right – Refrigerant is the medium that moves heat through your HVAC system, removing heat from the air inside the home. HVAC units need just the right amount of refrigerant to ensure optimal performance. If not enough refrigerant is present in the system, it will have reduced cooling capacity and be inefficient. Over time, it can put increased wear and tear on the system as it works harder to cool than it should.

    If a system is overcharged, the operating pressure will be incorrect and refrigerant slugging can occur. Refrigerant slugging occurs when liquid enters the compressor instead of vapor and can cause severe damage to the compressor.

    monitoring gas

    • Ensuring proper clearance – Part of your outdoor unit’s job is to release heat extracted from the air inside your home and business into the outdoor air. It can’t do this if it’s obstructed by flora outside. Rain runoff or falling ice or snow from roofs may also damage the unit.

    Your air conditioning and heating contractor must ensure the unit is properly placed outside. The unit should be well enough away from roof and gutter overhangs to protect it from falling objects or debris and trees and shrubs around it should be cleared to prevent obstruction.

    technician working on hvac unit

    How Do I Recognize a Faulty Installation?

    If your HVAC unit is malfunctioning or if your heating bills are inexplicably high, a faulty installation may be the root of your problems. Checking these components can help you better inform qualified HVAC technicians about your problem, allowing them to determine its cause more quickly.

    • Make sure you have the right unit – Record any product information about your unit, such as manufacturer and product number, and also determine the square footage of your home. A quick online search can help you estimate whether your unit is too large or too small for your home. If you can’t figure it out, relay the information that you’ve gathered to an HVAC technician, who can make a determination.
    • Check out the ducts – Leaky ductwork is often the culprit in installation failures. Where you can, check your system’s ductwork for any leaks or loose connections. If you see one, make a note of it and inform a heating and air conditioning repair professional ASAP.
    • Watch your bills – If you’ve just purchased a new unit, you can often determine if it was installed improperly by monitoring your energy bills for a few months. If your bills are higher than they were with your old system, and you’re not using it more, chances are that something is very wrong with your new unit or its installation.
    • Check your unit – Give your HVAC unit a visual inspection. Check to see if it appears to be too close to your home or if it doesn’t look like it’s properly set up. If you see something that looks odd, be sure to report it to an HVAC professional.

    Improper installation won’t be the cause of every malfunctioning or under-performing HVAC unit. If your unit is more than 15-20 years old, chances are that the age of the unit has more to do with the problem than installation issues. Regardless of the cause of the issue, getting the problem fixed quickly before it costs you more money is important. To ensure the job is done right, you need to pick a qualified contractor.

    Choosing a Contractor

    When choosing a heating and air conditioning repair service, it pays to hire a contractor with good training and experience. Your contractor should employ technicians who have undergone thorough trade school or on-the-job training in HVAC systems and who are knowledgeable about the latest units on the market. Your contractor should also have relationships with trusted name-brand HVAC unit manufacturers and should be able to discuss the design and quirks of your unit’s manufacturer.

    hvac unit maintenance

    Word-of-mouth is often the best way to find a qualified HVAC repair and installation company. Ask your friends and neighbors who they’ve used and who they recommend. You can also get a good feel for a contractor’s abilities and areas of competence by checking out online reviews.

    Air Rescue is a Tampa, FL air conditioning and heating contractor that has provided local residents with top-notch installation and quality products for more than 70 years. During Florida’s hot sweltering summers, A/C is one thing you don’t want to be without, and Air Rescue ensures its customers get the relief they need with fast and effective repairs and service .

    Air Rescue technicians are highly trained and capable of providing HVAC installation, total system rejuvenation, duct sealing, and other services. Contact Air Rescue today for a no-hassle quote and inquire about the company’s cost-effective service plans.

    Sources

    1. https://www.angieslist.com/articles/heating-bill-still-high-new-hvac-system-may-be-improperly-installed.htm

    2. https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=heat_cool.pr_hvac

    3. https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=home_improvement.hm_improvement_ducts

  • Should I Replace My Furnace at the Same Time as My Air Conditioner?

    Here in Tampa and other areas of central and south Florida, it largely will depend upon the type of heating and cooling system used in your home. Many homes have what is known as a “packaged system” or all-in-one air conditioner/heating solution.

    This type of system has most of the parts and components required to cool and heat your home contained in a single unit. They are beneficial because they eliminate the need to have a split system, where one part of the air conditioner (AC) is outdoors, the furnace is indoors, and they share the same blower and air handler indoors.

    hvac technician

    With a packaged system, you can use that extra space inside the home for a pantry, laundry room, or other purposes. Even if you have an existing split-system, and it is time to replace the furnace and AC together , you may want to consider a packaged system instead of separate units.

    If you have a packaged system and something goes wrong where the unit needs to be replaced, then, yes, you will need to replace your furnace and AC at the same time. However, if you have a split system, then, in certain cases, you may be able to replace the AC but not the furnace and vice versa (replace the furnace, but not the air conditioner).

    When Should You Replace Your AC and Furnace?

    Your AC and furnace will eventually need to be replaced with a new system. One telltale sign that it is time for a new furnace or AC unit is when heating and AC repair is becoming a monthly occurrence. This is a good indication the system has reached the end of its usefulness. Rather than continue to spend money on monthly repairs, it makes more sense to buy a new system.

    The average lifespan and usefulness of heating and AC systems vary, but a good general timeframe is:

    • 15 – 20 years on packaged systems
    • 20 – 30 years on furnaces (split systems)
    • 10 – 15 years on air conditioners (split systems)

    Most people will attempt to push their existing systems to the upper limits before replacing them. Part of this has to do with the costs associated with getting a new system.

    furnace system

    However, in more recent years, as technological improvements have made home heating and cooling systems much more energy efficient, we are finding people are replacing their systems when they are between 10 and 15 years old. This allows them to take advantage of the newer efficiencies and increased energy savings.

    You should also consider replacing your AC and furnace if you notice your energy bills are increasing. This could indicate the system is no longer operating at peak efficiencies. A tune-up from one of our AC and heating repair technicians might help if your system is not that old.

    On the other hand, if it is getting up there in years, then a tune-up is only a short-term fix. Eventually, you will need to replace the system, as tune-ups will no longer help maintain the system’s efficiency.

    Benefits of Replacing Both at Once

    The most obvious benefit of replacing both your AC and furnace at the same time is you will have a “matched” split system. This means all of the parts and components used indoors and outdoors are designed to work together to provide maximum operating performance and energy efficiencies.

    With an “unmatched” system, where you replace only the AC or the furnace, the maximum efficiencies output by the new part of the system may not be able to be fully reached. This will largely depend on the age of the other part of the system you are not replacing.

    new furnace units

    Another benefit of replacing both units at the same time is you may qualify for a special rebate, incentives, and offers by the system manufacturer. Home heating and cooling unit manufacturers often run different promotions, much like car manufacturers, so you will want to inquire what current incentives are available.

    In addition, your home heating and cooling sales and installation company might provide a discount since you are purchasing both at the same time. For instance, the costs to replace just the furnace could run between $2,000 and $5,000, depending on the model and features.

    However, if you were to get a new furnace when you had your AC replaced, the costs to add this on could range from $1,000 to $3,000. Please keep in mind, this is just an example to illustrate how you could save money by doing both at the same time, and your actual savings and costs can and will vary.

    Other Reasons to Replace Both at Once

    Aside from aged systems and potential cost savings, there are other times when it makes sense to replace both your AC and furnace at the same time, as follows:

    • The installation of the new system poses specific challenges that make the job difficult. If the furnace or the blower and air handler are in hard-to-access areas, you may want to do both at the same time.
    • You live in a remote rural area. If you are already having a technician come out to replace your AC or furnace, and you know the other one will need to be replaced in the near future, it is better to get both done at once.
    • You want to upgrade to an HE (High-Efficiency) AC model. If you are looking at new AC units with a 16 SEER rating or higher, then you will want to get a new furnace at the same time. This is because these HE units have to be matched to a compatible furnace model. These types of systems require variable speed motors and other modern technologies to operate correctly.

    You are getting ready to retire. Once you retire, if you are like most retirees, the last thing you want to worry about is having to buy a new AC or furnace on a fixed income. Replacing both now allows ensures you will not have to worry about this expense for the next 10, 15, or 20 years.

    hvac repair

    Times When You Will Not Want to Replace Both

    There are a few times when you may not need to replace both the AC and furnace at the same time. These exceptions apply to split systems, not packaged systems.

    • The AC unit is less than 5 years old. Split system AC units will last between 10 to 15 years, on average. So, if you are replacing the furnace and not converting from a split system to a packaged system, then it can be better to wait.
    • The furnace is less than 10 years old. Furnaces on split systems last between 20 to 30 years, on average. Since furnaces have almost double the lifespan of AC units, it makes more sense to wait and replace both the next time the AC unit has to be replaced.
    • A salesperson told you to replace both. If you went shopping for a new AC unit or furnace at a showroom, the salesperson may have said you had to do both at the same time. The reason they said this is partially because they are working off a commission, so, if they can sell you both, they earn more.

    If you know you need either a new furnace or AC and are not sure if you should replace both, the best thing to do is to contact us and have one of our licensed, bonded, and insured HVAC technicians take a look at your system. Our technicians will let you know if you can wait on one or the other or if it would be better to replace both now.

    hvac technician in action

    For more information on whether to replace both your AC and furnace, HVAC system repairs, furnace or AC maintenance, installation , or for help selecting the right system for your home, please feel free to contact Air Rescue at (813) 375-9982 today!

  • The Five Benefits of Air Filtration

    We need it to survive: clean air is as important as the water we drink and the food we eat when it comes to physical and mental well-being. Unfortunately, many live their lives without any type of air filtration system in their homes and places of work.

    Perhaps because many of the most troublesome air quality pollutants are functionally invisible, it can be difficult to recognize the need for whole-home air filtration as a necessary aspect of any AC installation.

    Fortunately, home air cleaners and filtration systems come in a variety of cost-effective forms. When people experience the difference that air purification makes to their health and happiness, they tend to realize just how important clean air is. Here, we’ll discuss several benefits of air filtration, and some of the ways that an air purifier can work to improve your home and even your quality of life.

    hvac-technician

    Allergies and Asthma

    Anyone who lives with seasonal allergies can attest to the frustration and difficulty that come with regular changes in the weather. When seasons shift, it can wreak havoc and throw a monkey wrench into our overall productivity at work and at home.

    Busy working people don’t have time to take off from their lives when sniffling, sneezing, watery eyes, and other hay fever symptoms emerge like clockwork following the seasonal proliferation pollen and other allergens in the air.

    In addition to seasonal symptoms triggered by the explosion of pollen-producing plant life around spring time, allergy-sensitive individuals are often plagued by reactions to dust mites.

    Mites live and reproduce in neglected dusty areas of the home and have been proven as a cause and irritant of dermatological and respiratory allergies. Asthma sufferers, in particular, are susceptible to dust mites and other minuscule atmospheric interlopers, and trying to get rid of them with a vacuum cleaner often just makes things worse by upsetting the resting mites and vaulting them into the air.

    air-conditioning-filter

    Air filtration works wonders for asthma and allergy sufferers by removing such triggers from the air in your home or office, giving you an oasis of respite from the ravages of seasonal allergens. Sneezing fits and bouts of hay fever symptoms can destroy healthy sleep patterns, and over-the-counter medicines to treat said symptoms often leave people feeling hazy and slow.

    Adding home air cleaners as part of your next HVAC repair will lead to an immediate reduction in symptoms and suffering that seasonal allergies mean for so many.

    Pet Dander

    Pets like cats and dogs are often considered a part of the family. In many homes, they’re allowed inside, on the furniture, and often sleep right alongside us in bed at night. Unfortunately, their contribution to the household goes beyond simply being cute, loveable companions. Pets leave dander everywhere they go. Dander is created from the buildup of tiny skin flakes and other microscopic pollutants that can accumulate on couches, beds, and other lounge furniture which, over time, will have a negative impact on the overall air quality in your home.

    Simply vacuuming up the visible fur and debris in their wake barely makes a dent in the problem.

    Have you ever had someone over for dinner, only for them to have an allergic reaction or remark on the “pet smell” in your house? Air filtration helps mitigate pet dander and creates an air system virtually free of allergens, so that any friends who are bothered by cats can finally come inside for a visit without feeling miserable the entire time.

    Odor Control

    Even if your pets are incredibly clean and well-groomed, their odor can quickly permeate the house if left unchecked, particularly if your animals are allowed freedom to move between the indoors and outdoors. In addition, there are many other odors common to living spaces which tend to hang heavily in the air even after the source has been removed.

    Regular preparation of strong-smelling foods like fish, eggs, kimchi, or curry can “stain” the air in your kitchen and dining areas with their scent, as can tobacco smoke, which can waft indoors through open cracked windows and doors even if nobody smokes inside the home.

    Companies specializing in air conditioning repair in Tampa, FL are well-versed in air filter installation and maintenance, and their HVAC repair professionals will be the first to sing the praises of an air purifier when it comes to ousting troublesome and lingering smells throughout your home. There’s no need to live with pungent food or smoke odors when a good filtration system can clean the air that you breathe and remove the tiny odor particles which like to hang around.

    Germs and Bacteria

    Even beyond allergies, there are all types of microscopic pollutants which can set up shop and reproduce in your home, biding their time until they can infiltrate your body and derail your immune system.

    air-mold-spores

    Mold spores, many of which can be harmful to our health and, in some cases, potentially deadly if left unchecked, tend to thrive in damp and humid areas like bathrooms, swamp coolers, and pool houses; during the dog days of the heavy Florida summer, “damp and humid” is an apt descriptor for the general atmosphere, which is why quality filtration and air conditioning near Tampa, FL is an absolute must.

    Mold proliferation in your home, even if you can’t see it, can destroy a healthy immune system and cause lung infections and difficulty breathing if inhaled—sensitive people don’t even need much exposure to mold in order to be triggered by spores.

    In addition to microscopic spores, germs like the flu virus and other health hazards are routinely carried into our homes from the outside world on our hands, clothes, and shoes, and can easily find a roosting place within your home to infect you when you least expect it.

    An air purifier works to scrub your home free of spores, viruses, and other microscopic airborne menaces which seek to derail your life and make you sick, which is especially important when it’s hot and humid.

    Atmospheric Benefits

    Air filtration systems have many benefits, but also have immediate and easily appreciable advantages when it comes to the overall home atmosphere. Their primary function may be to remove breathable pollutants from your air, but many people choose to install air purifiers for home comfort.

    Clean, filtered air is, quite simply, easier to breathe. While this assertion may raise eyebrows among people who have never experienced the difference between filtered and unfiltered air, the difference is noticeable and often remarked upon by satisfied customers following the installation of an air purification system.

    Heating and cooling near Tampa, FL is big business because the weather in the Sunshine State can be so oppressive; to live comfortably during the humid summer months, in particular, some level of air conditioning is an absolute must for homes and businesses alike.

    air-conditioning-unit

    A quality air filtration system does a lot of heavy lifting in the way of removing moisture from the air and creating a cooler, cleaner feeling atmosphere inside your home. In addition to the cooling benefits of a standard AC installation, air filtration actively wicks moisture molecules from the air in your space and helps dehumidify the area for maximum comfort and air conditioning efficiency.

    Don’t go through another brutal summer without speaking to an HVAC repair specialist about the difference filtered air can make to your health, home, and happiness.

  • Tips for Buying an Air Conditioner

    There are several types of air conditioners available for purchase, such as wall units and whole-house units. Before you can look at the different factors that go into an air conditioner replacement in Tampa, FL , you must determine which type of unit you would like. Watch the video to see some of the important factors, such as Energy Efficiency Ratios, that will help you choose the right air conditioner for you.

    Look for air conditioners with an Energy Efficiency Ratio, or EER, of 13 or higher. This number, in addition to the Energy Star logo, means that the unit has the highest efficiency rating to cool your home and keep your cooling costs low. You must also look for the proper unit size to cool the space. Your HVAC contractor can help you determine the right size to cool your home without sacrificing efficiency.

  • SEER Ratings Explained

    When you are shopping for a new air conditioner , you will want to learn about SEER ratings. In this video, you will receive a detailed explanation of SEER ratings and how they affect the performance of your air conditioner. To achieve the best efficiency from your ac installation in Tampa, you will want to purchase an air conditioning unit that has a SEER rating of 16 or higher. A higher SEER rating translates into improved efficiency from a heating and air conditioning system.

    For answers to your questions about SEER ratings, be sure to get in touch with an HVAC company that serves your local area. A team of air conditioning installation experts can explain how SEER ratings are calculated, and they can also tell you more about the advantages of upgrading your current air conditioner to a new, energy efficient model.

  • What Frequent AC Cycles Could Mean for Your System

    Are you wondering if you need air conditioner repair in Sarasota because your AC turns on and off too frequently? If so, then read on to learn what frequent AC cycles could mean for your air conditioning system.

    When you have an air conditioning service install a new AC in your home, one of the most important factors is the unit’s size. Air conditioners that are too small for your home are forced to run for longer periods than they are designed to run. On the other hand, a unit that is too large will turn on and off frequently because they can drop the home’s temperature so quickly. While this may sound like a good thing, it can wear out the unit’s parts prematurely and cause your home to feel damp and clammy.

    Other issues that can be related to frequent AC cycles are a malfunctioning unit or thermostat. If you believe that your air conditioner is turning on and off too often, call an HVAC technician today to schedule an inspection.

    ac - unit

  • How to Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

    While many of us are familiar with the dangers of outdoor air pollution, indoor air pollution can also have a significant impact on your health and wellbeing without you even knowing it. If you have been experiencing allergies, respiratory issues, or other health symptoms when you are at home, you may be suffering from poor indoor air quality. A company that offers heating and cooling services can help you improve the cleanliness of your indoor air. During your next air conditioner repair in Tampa, you may want to ask your heating and cooling experts about whether you are eligible for an air filter replacement or duct cleaning.

    There are several steps that a heating and cooling company can take to help you improve your indoor air. By replacing the air filters in your air conditioning unit, your technician can remove dust, pollen, and other particles that may be clogging up your indoor air. A company that offers duct cleaning can also thoroughly clear out your HVAC ducts and eliminate traces of mold, dust, and harmful contaminants.

    air - quality

  • Changing Your AC Filter

    To keep your air conditioner running efficiently, one of the most important things that you will need to do is change your AC filter on a regular basis. In general, you should change it at least once every few months, and you should change it more often than that if you use your AC unit everyday. Watch this video to see how you can do air conditioning maintenance in Tampa on your own by replacing your AC filter.

    Your AC filter is an essential part of your air conditioner because it is responsible for filtering dirt, dust, and other debris out of your air. When you run your AC, the air in your home will circulate through your unit several times throughout the course of a day, and your filter will keep that air clean. By replacing your AC filter, you can help maintain your heating and air conditioning systems.