Frequently Asked Questions
What size Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning unit should I have for my home?
It depends on the square footage and available duct work in the home. Contact us at 503-266-1249 for a free estimate with our comfort consultant.
How is the efficiency of heating and cooling equipment measured?
It is measured in SEERS. The higher the SEER rating, the larger the coil is, thus more efficient (temperature difference between entering air vs. discharge air). Gas Furnaces are measured in AFUE.
How much does a new replacement system cost?
It depends on the size of equipment needed and what filtration system or zoning system you would like. Contact us at 503-266-1249 for more information and a specific estimate.
What are the advantages of a programmable thermostat?
Helps you save energy by setting temperature back during unoccupied hours.
What is a good temperature to set my thermostat at?
72 degrees. If it is very hot outside, setting it any lower will not accomplish any difference.
Is there anything I should before calling for service?
Check your breaker panel and make sure it’s on. Also check to make sure your thermostat is requesting the desired temperature. To call for service dial 503-266-1249 or visit our e-service page.
Do electronic air cleaners really work? What is the maintenance to keep it going?
Yes they work, and with little to no maintenance cost. You just need to keep them clean regularly (monthly with continuous fan usage).
What maintenance should I do on my air conditioner?
Make sure to keep a clean filter in place at the air handling unit, and prevent any vegetation from growing around it. Everything else should be done by a heating and cooling contractor. Call us at 503-266-1249 or visit our e-service page to schedule a maintenance call.
How often should I have maintenance on my heating and cooling system?
Twice a year, preferably in the spring and fall. Call us at 503-266-1249 or visit our e-service page to schedule a checkup.
Should I close registers?
One or two is okay, but generally speaking it is not a good idea. This causes air flow restrictions.
When I schedule a service call, why am I given a window of time instead of a specific time?
The first customer each day, for each technician, can be given an exact time of arrival. There is no way to know how long that call will take. There may be a few or a lot of repairs. The parts might be in the technician's van or he might have to go pick up parts at a distributor. Traffic may also delay technicians or maybe a customer has an emergency and cancels last minute. We stay with a customer until we have completed the work. We will do the same thing for you.
Do I need to be home while the technician is performing work on my system?
No, you don't have to be there, but it would be best. There is typically a lot of information to share and we can provide the best service by helping you make the best decisions if you are present. If you cannot be home, we can make arrangements with you. When you call in to set up a service appointment, let us know if you need us to meet a neighbor or friend. Either way, we will need a phone number to call and confirm that someone is available to meet our technician.
If I need to cancel a service call, how late can I do that?
We are aware that life throws everyone a curve ball. You can cancel at any time. We do politely ask you to be courteous and call as soon as possible, your friends and neighbors may be waiting for a technician as well.
If I really like the work performed by my technician, can I specifically request them next time?
Yes, you can and we are happy to accommodate that. However, there are two things to keep in mind. One...your favorite technician may be trained or certified for certain tasks, but not others. We may not be able to send the same tech to repair your oil furnace as we sent to tune-up your air conditioner. Two... requesting a tech can cause a delay. We might be able to send someone else sooner.
When a technician finds something wrong with my system, can they fix it on the spot or will I need to schedule another appointment?
If the parts are in the technician's van or at our warehouse, we can perform the repairs at that time. Sometimes parts have to be ordered and in that case we will come back after the parts arrive. Occasionally, in the summer, air conditioning coils freeze over. The technician will likely have to return once the ice has melted.
If I have a problem with my system during non-business hours, what should I do?
Call our office number. Even after hours a real person will answer the phone to help you. If it's an emergency, a technician will be paged to return your call.
Will the technician leave me with notes regarding my system?
Yes! We have an exciting new software system that will send a paperless document to your email account. It will have the details regarding the service call, receipt of payment, and recommendations that could improve your HVAC system.
Who should I call if I have a question after the service has been performed?
Call our office phone number. Those paperless documents are stored in our computer system under your address. If we can't help you based on that info, we can call the technician that helped you.
What to do about frozen heat pumps
- Turn thermostat to the emergency heat position. This will use your back-up source of heat, thus not allowing the heat pump to run during this condition.
- Once all of the ice is gone, schedule a service call. It is extremely important that the ice is removed naturally so that no further damage is done.
How often do I need to change/clean my air filter?
Typically every 3 months. It depends on the type of filtration system and dust conditions inside the home (kids, pets, etc...). Sometimes filters need to be changed at sooner intervals. We recommend checking them once a month. After the first year you will get an idea of the schedule.
What should I do if my thermostat is blank?
This can happen for several different reasons. Before calling a service technician check that your circuit breakers are on and filters are clean.
My heat pump is making weird noises & venting a lot of steam. Should I be concerned?
No, this is normal operation for a heat pump when it goes through a defrost cycle. This cycle is necessary in order to maintain efficiencies by melting off any ice built up on the coils. This cycle should only lasts a few minutes before returning to the normal heating cycle.
My gas furnace only runs for a few minutes before shutting off. Then it comes back on in a couple minutes & repeats this on and off before it feels warm. Why is this happening?
It could be possible that your furnace's mechanical safety switches are tripping due to improper operating conditions or that your furnace could even be "Short Cycling" due to over sizing. In either case, a service call should be set up to prevent further problems.
My heating system starts at 4am even though I programmed the thermostat to start at 6am. Why does it do this?
Most of today’s thermostats have an “Adaptive Intelligent Recovery” setting that can be turned off. The thermostat is starting the heating cycle earlier so the indoor temperature will be reached by 6am rather than starting the heating cycle at 6 am.