5 Reasons to Invest in Regular HVAC Maintenance

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5 Reasons to Invest in Regular HVAC Maintenance

When your HVAC system is running smoothly, scheduling maintenance appointments may be way down at the bottom of your to-do list. However, annual HVAC maintenance is the easiest and most economical way to ensure that your air conditioner and furnace work properly and safely all season long. Taking care of your equipment improves energy efficiency and prevents the inconvenience of breakdowns and costly emergency repairs. It also keeps your system from needing a replacement prematurely. Preventive maintenance is the best way to protect this significant investment in your home.

Here are the top five reasons you should invest in regular HVAC preventive maintenance:

1. Increases energy efficiency

An HVAC system that has to work harder to maintain the proper temperature uses more energy. Regular maintenance keeps your system running as efficiently as possible and that can translate into substantial energy cost savings over time.

2. Minimizes air conditioner and furnace repairs

A trained HVAC technician can catch small problems while they are easy and inexpensive to fix, and even prevent problems from arising in the first place. Maintenance appointments at the start of the season can be easily scheduled at your convenience. Regular maintenance prevents the need for emergency repairs, which are costly and inconvenient. During peak periods in winter and summer, any service call can be challenging to schedule as demand increases dramatically.

3. Lengthens the lifespan of your air conditioner and furnace

Normal wear-and-tear occurs over time as your furnace and air conditioner are used normally and can get worse as the equipment ages without proper care. Regular maintenance decreases that wear-and-tear, effectively prolonging the life of your system. This means more years of service before you need a replacement.

4. Improves indoor air quality

Indoor air pollution has become an increasing problem as our homes are sealed more tightly against the elements, trapping harmful or irritating substances such as dust, cigarette smoke and pet dander, inside. This is particularly troubling for people with allergies or respiratory illnesses. Regular HVAC maintenance keeps your system clean and ensures that the air circulating throughout your home is clean and well-filtered.

5. Ensures the safety of your home

A poorly maintained HVAC system can result in a carbon monoxide leak.  Preventive maintenance typically includes a carbon monoxide test which can detect a potential hazard before it becomes deadly.

Contact Rheem Pro Partner to schedule your summer maintenance today! Rheem Pro Partner serves homes throughout Colorado and Wyoming.

Air Conditioner Turns On and Off Frequently? Here are Some Things You Can Do

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Air Conditioner Turns On and Off Frequently? Here are Some Things You Can Do

If you notice your air conditioner turning on and off every few minutes, you should address it right away. This is known as short cycling. It wears out the compressor, one of the main components of the outside unit that is very expensive to repair or replace.

Short cycling can lead to other problems as well.

  • The repeated system start-ups use more energy and unnecessarily Increase energy costs.
  • The excessive wear-and-tear shortens the life-span of your air conditioner.
  • Over-worked equipment results in costly repairs.
  • High humidity or temperature swings mean decreased comfort.

What can cause an air conditioner to short cycle?

Dirty air filter

One common cause is a dirty air filter, which can inhibit airflow and cause a host of problems. Change the air filter every 30 to 60 days to keep your air conditioner equipment clean and running smoothly.

Dirty condenser coils

When the condenser unit and coils get dirty, they don’t work efficiently, making the whole system work harder and possibly overheat. This triggers the unit to shut off and restart repeatedly. Make sure the area around the unit is clear of debris such as leaves.

Improperly located thermostat

Locating a thermostat improperly can cause the thermostat to misread the actual temperature and turn on and off more than necessary. Make sure your thermostat is installed on an interior wall away from windows, doors to the outside, air vents and direct sunlight.

Frozen evaporator coil

Restricted airflow and low pressure throughout the system can result in ice or frost forming on the evaporator coil.

Oversized air conditioner

If short cycling has always been an issue, it is likely that your air conditioner is too big for your home. An oversized air conditioner will cool your home quickly but without properly dehumidifying the air. In addition to short cycling, this can lead to hot and cold spots, and the lack of efficiency will mean higher energy bills.

Low refrigerant / freon

Low levels of refrigerant may indicate that there is a leak. Any leak should be identified and repaired right away by your HVAC professional.

Because short cycling can be an indication of a serious problem, the sooner you address it the better in order to prevent or mitigate any potential damage.

Rheem Pro Partner is ready to help with all your air conditioning needs. Contact us today in Colorado and Wyoming with your concerns about short cycling, or any questions regarding your heating and cooling equipment.

What to Do Before Turning on Your Air Conditioner for the First Time this Summer

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What to Do Before Turning on Your Air Conditioner for the First Time this Summer

When summer comes, your air conditioner is a vital asset in your fight to stay cool, calm and collected.

But you should never take the health of your air conditioner for granted. Before the hot weather season officially arrives, here are a few steps you should take to guarantee your air conditioner will be ready to run at full efficiency when you need it …

Outside the Home: Preparing the Condenser

  • If you used a cover on your outdoor condenser unit to protect it from the snow over the winter, remove it before you start the air conditioner.
  • If no cover was used, clean off any and all debris that may have fallen onto the condenser. Next, remove the grill over the fan to check for any debris that may have fallen inside the unit.
  • With a soft brush attachment, vacuum the blades of the fan before reinstalling the grill, and vacuum out the bottom of the condenser box as well. If the blades are covered with grease or grime, you can use a soapy solution and a rag to wipe them off.
  • Remove the side and top panels on the condenser to access the condenser coils. Clean them thoroughly with a soft brush, or wash them off with a hose, or wipe them clean with a special condenser cleaning fluid that can be obtained from any HVAC dealer or home improvement store.
  • Make sure the area around the condenser is clear of all objects or vining plants, within a distance of at least three feet on all sides. When the AC is in operation air should flow freely all around the perimeter of the condenser.
  • If there is a power switch on the condenser, turn it to the ‘on’ position (you should also check the circuit breaker to make sure the power is on there).

Inside the Home: The Filter, Vents and Thermostat

  • Switch the thermostat manually from ‘heat’ to ‘cool.’ If you have a smart thermostat, reprogram it to reflect the coming changes of season. Check the battery on the thermostat to makes sure it is still working, or simply change it if you have not done so within the previous 6-9 months.
  • Clean the dust off the vents in each room throughout the house. If you can see dust has collected inside the vents in the ductwork, vacuum it out with a soft brush attachment.
  • Replace the HVAC air filter. Even if the filter doesn’t look overly dirty, it is always a good idea to get a new filter at the beginning of each heating or cooling season. In general filters should be changed every three months, so that schedule can be coordinated to make sure you install a new one at these important times. While you don’t have to buy the most expensive filters on the market, DO NOT use cheap fiberglass filters. They will rapidly become dirty and will not work particularly well even when they’re new.

Bonus Tip: Schedule a tune-up and maintenance inspection with your HVAC contractor

Home maintenance is important, but there are certain matters you should leave to the professionals.

A trained HVAC professional can inspect your coolant lines for leaks, replenish your supply of coolant if it is low, check your electrical connections and inspect your ductwork to see if it needs to be cleaned or repaired. After these tests are completed, they will turn the system on to make sure everything is top working order.

Seeking the Best HVAC Maintenance Services? Call Rheem Pro Partners Today

At Rheem Pro Partners, our technicians are constantly on-the-go throughout the spring and early summer months, offering expert AC tune-up and maintenance inspection services to our grateful customers in Colorado and Wyoming. To beat the summer rush, please contact us today to schedule your inspection—the health of your air conditioner could depend on it.

10 Easy Ways to Conserve Energy at Home

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10 Easy Ways to Conserve Energy at Home

Owning and operating a home can be expensive, but one way to save money is to save energy. Saving energy doesn’t have to mean huge sacrifices in comfort or quality of life. Today, many savvy Colorado and Wyoming homeowners take these simple steps to keep their homes operating efficiently and economically. By giving a little attention to your HVAC system, including your air conditioner, furnace, water heater, and heat pump, as well as addressing other common energy guzzlers, you can save, too!

Here are 10 steps you can take today:

1. Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120 degrees).
Most water heaters come from the factory with a default setting of 140 degrees. Lowering the setting to 120 degrees not only saves energy, it also prevents scalding. This is especially important in homes with young children.

2. Make sure your water heater has an insulating blanket.  
Installing an insulating blanket is a quick, inexpensive fix that will pay for itself within a year in energy cost savings.

3. Make sure your air conditioner, furnace or heat pump receive professional maintenance each year. Look for the ENERGYSTAR label when replacing your system.
Regular professional maintenance can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your HVAC system by preventing costly breakdowns, as well as by keeping your equipment operating at peak efficiency. When it is time to buy a new system, the ENERGYSTAR label will help you determine the models that are most energy efficient. This is an important consideration when making your buying decision because it directly impacts the overall cost. As a general rule, purchasing the most efficient system you can afford will give you the greatest savings over time.

4. Replace your incandescent lights with compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) or LEDs.  
CFLs and LEDs are more expensive to purchase than the standard incandescent bulbs but can save three-quarters of the electricity used. Start by replacing incandescents that are 60-100W and are used several hours a day.

5. Turn off the lights in unoccupied rooms.
Consider installing timers, photo cells or occupancy sensors to make turning off lights in empty rooms and spaces effortless.

6. Turn off your computer when you are not using it. 
Turn off the monitor if you aren’t using it for more than 20 minutes, and turn off both the CPU and the monitor if they won’t be used for more than 2 hours.

7. Unplug equipment that drains energy when not in use.  
Many appliances use energy even when they are not turned on such as cell phone chargers, fans, televisions and coffee makers.

8. Install a programmable thermostat. 
A programmable thermostat is an inexpensive device that makes your HVAC smart by only heating and cooling your home when you need it. While you are at work or school during the day or sleeping at night, the temperature setting adjusts so your home is comfortable, but you are not paying for energy that you don’t need.

9. Clean or replace filters in your furnace, air conditioner, and heat pump.  
Replacing (or cleaning) your air filters every 30-60 days (depending on need) will keep your system clean and efficient, and help prevent unnecessary wear and tear.

10. Caulk leaky windows and doors.  
Improve the comfort of your home and stop paying for wasted energy by sealing air leaks and adding sufficient insulation.

The experts at Rheem Pro Partner are ready to answer all your home energy questions. Contact us today to learn more!

8 Reasons to Tune-up Your Home’s Air Conditioner in the Spring

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8 Reasons to Tune-up Your Home's Air Conditioner in the Spring

Spring is officially heading our way which means now is the perfect time to start thinking about your air conditioner. Regular air conditioner maintenance increases your system’s energy efficiency, which saves you money. Still not convinced it’s time for a tune-up? Consider these important reasons.

1. Maximize your air conditioner’s energy efficiency.

Yes, an efficient air conditioner uses less energy which saves money on utility bills. Keeping it running at peak efficiency, however, requires regular maintenance. Without it, your air conditioner could be working harder than it has to — running longer and using more energy to cool your home. Wasted energy is bad for the environment and bad for your wallet. Taking care of your system with annual tune-ups keeps it running smoothly, and the cost will be recouped in lower energy bills and fewer repairs down the road.

2. Extend the life of your air conditioner.

Even newer, high efficiency units can break down if they aren’t properly maintained. Regular maintenance will extend the life of the unit. Enjoy cool, comfortable temperatures in your home all season long, and year after year.

3. Maintain your warranty.

For a large investment, such as an air conditioner, your warranty provides some peace of mind that you won’t face a costly repair. However, many manufacturers today require regular maintenance to keep the warranty in force. Don’t take a chance. Protect your investment by scheduling a maintenance call.

4. Achieve more consistent cooling.

Comfort is the main reason to install a central air conditioner and one of the first signs of trouble is inconsistent cooling. Finding that your home doesn’t stay at the proper temperature as easily as it used to or that certain areas of your home don’t cool at all are problems that you can avoid with regular maintenance.

5. Have fewer repairs.

Your A/C professional is trained to spot and correct small problems long before they advance to costly repairs or even replacement.

6. Better air quality.

These days our homes are more tightly sealed for energy efficiency, but that means we are potentially more susceptible to indoor air pollution. Our HVAC systems are a key factor in ensuring that the air we breathe in our homes is clean and safe. During the maintenance check, your HVAC professional will replace all the air filters and make sure that your system is clean and safe.

7. Save money in the long run.

Let’s recap: Lower cooling costs each summer, fewer repairs, and keeping your warranty in full force should you need it, all add up to significant savings over the life of your air conditioner. In addition, proper maintenance will extend that life so you won’t have to replace it sooner than necessary. Tune-ups are part of the cost of owning and operating an air conditioner, but when you factor in the money you will save over time, they are actually saving you money!

8. Peace of mind.

Chances are, your life is busy enough without having to be concerned that your air conditioner is functioning properly and safely. The simplest, most economical way to have worry-free service from your air conditioner each year is to have your system professionally serviced and inspected before you are ready to use it.

Save money, protect the environment, ensure your peace of mind, and enjoy a comfortable home this summer. Contact a Rheem Pro Partner to schedule your maintenance tune-up today!

School’s Back in Session. Is it Time to Replace Your Air Conditioner?

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While Mother Nature begins the process of winding down, the start of the school year brings its own sense of energy and activity. Chances are, with new schedules and commitments, and temperatures beginning to dip, you aren’t wondering if it is time to replace your air conditioner. But, here’s why you should.

More availability.

In the cooler months, demand for air conditioner installation drops significantly. With fewer buyers to work with and schedule, professionals have more time to spend with you and answer your questions. As a result, you can be sure you are getting the best equipment for your needs and that it is installed properly. Scheduling at your convenience is much easier. You can even schedule installation in advance, giving your installer the opportunity to make specific recommendations for your home that maximize efficiency and performance unique to your home.

Better pricing.

Buying now can save you money. Lower demand means HVAC companies are likely to offer lower prices on their services. Manufacturer rebates typically pop up in the fall as well.

The luxury of time.

So often we make major purchases in emergency situations – something breaks when we need it most and we don’t have time to do proper research. By addressing your air conditioning needs in the off season, you give yourself the luxury of time to research your options and make an informed decision, rather than rushing into a purchase that may not be right for you simply because you need something.

Temps can remain high.

Even in September, temperatures can be in the 90s. While you may already be thinking about the cooler weather that’s coming, you could very well still be using your A/C. If it is not working properly and you are anticipating needing a new one next year, you can address those needs now and have a functioning system while you still need it this year.

Avoid repair costs.

Repairing an older air conditioner to get you through the end of the season may not make economic sense. With all the advantages of shopping for a new unit now, you could be wasting money by paying for repairs now, and waiting until spring or summer to buy a new unit.

If your air conditioner is not cooling your house properly, your HVAC professional can determine the cause, and advise you on replacing your system.

The experts at Rheem Pro Partner are ready to help. Call us today!

6 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a New Air Conditioner

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An air conditioner provides comfort and safety and can add value to your home. Choosing a new one is an important decision that requires some thought and attention. For starters, here are 6 common mistakes to avoid in order to ensure that you get many years of excellent performance. You’ll save money, time and grief in the process.

1. Buying the Wrong Size Air Conditioner

Buying a unit that is too big or too small will end up costing you money, and likely will not provide the level of cooling you need. A unit that is too small will work unnecessarily hard and still not be able to cool your home properly. A unit that is too big won’t provide uniform temperatures throughout your home. Both will operate inefficiently, cycling often and driving up your utility costs.

2. Putting the AC in the Wrong Place

Hiding your air conditioner behind plants or shrubs may be aesthetically pleasing, but it can clog the condenser coils, make the AC less efficient, and hinder ventilation. Many of today’s models are designed to be more visually appealing. If you do need to camouflage yours, however, be sure that any shrubs or plants are at least 2 feet away from the unit, and are regularly trimmed to prevent debris from getting into the condenser. Have your unit professionally serviced every year to clean out any dirt and debris that may collect inside.

3. Missing Rebate Opportunities

Manufacturers typically offer rebates that can mean significant savings on your A/C purchase. Those rebates often come during the fall, when most customers aren’t shopping. Don’t miss out on this opportunity by waiting until spring or summer to research your purchase. Great deals are available now!

4. Not Getting More than One Estimate

Not all air conditioners are the same. Prices, options, installation costs, service agreements and permits vary. Not all HVAC companies are the same either. Experience, reputation, reliability and training vary. Get multiple quotes and ask lots of questions to be sure you are making an accurate comparison.

5. Pursuing the Lowest Price

When comparing air conditioners, purchase price doesn’t tell the whole story. Energy bills are an ongoing cost of operation, and sacrificing efficiency for a lower upfront cost could end up costing you more. Ongoing maintenance issues are another consideration. Paying more for reliability and durability can save big over the life of the product. Similarly, skimping on the cost of installation by hiring the wrong contractor can lead to product failure and the need to replace the unit sooner. An air conditioner is a long-term investment in your home. It makes good economic sense to purchase the most efficient one you can afford, even if it costs a little more.

6. Not Getting A Written Guarantee

A written guarantee is your assurance that the company you purchase from stands by its products and services. Be sure to secure your investment with no-hassle, no-questions-asked protection against breakdowns. A true guarantee includes a Performance Guarantee, an Investment Guarantee and a true 100% Satisfaction Guarantee – in writing. Be sure to read it carefully, to know if there are any exclusions.

Bonus Tip:  Do your homework!

Start with a reliable, reputable HVAC company with a strong track record of excellence. You can count on your Rheem Pro Partner for excellent products and services. Contact us today for more information.

Rheem Prestige Variable Speed RA20 Air Conditioner Review

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The Rheem Prestige Variable Speed RA20 offers many enhancements that maximize efficiency and functionality, while making service and maintenance a breeze.

Highest energy efficiency rating = big savings on energy costs

SEER and EER ratings indicate an air conditioner’s energy efficiency. The higher the rating , the greater the efficiency – and the greater your savings on utility bills. The Rheem RA20 features PlusOne™ Energy Efficiency with a minimum of 20 SEER (the minimum industry standard is 13 SEER) and 13 EER system performance, making it extremely economical to operate.

Top-tier performance = maximum comfort and efficiency

The Copeland Scroll™ Variable Speed Compressor’s modulating technology provides more precise temperature control, lower humidity and greater efficiency. The overdrive feature provides cooling load up to 107°F so you stay cool and comfortable even when outside temperatures soar.

Durability & noise reduction = years of worry-free operation

The Rheem RA20 is built to last with design features that reduce noise. Enjoy your cool, comfortable home and peace and quiet.

  • New composite base pan dampens sound, captures louver panels, eliminates corrosion and reduces number of fasteners needed.
  • Curved louver panels provide ultimate coil protection, enhance cabinet strength, and increased cabinet rigidity.
  • Optimized fan orifice optimizes airflow and reduces unit sound.

Smart design features = savings on maintenance and service

Rheem has incorporated many features that make it easy for technicians to access components so they can work quickly and efficiently­— saving you time and money on service calls. PlusOne™ Expanded Valve Space and PlusOne™ Triple Service Access give technicians greater accessibility, more room to work, and use fewer fasteners so they can work faster.

Smart tech = smart savings

  • The RA20 is an EcoNet™ Enabled product. The EcoNet Smart Home System provides advanced air and water control for maximum energy savings and ideal comfort.
  • A QR code provides technical information on demand for faster service calls.

Lasting beauty = no need to hide it

  • The powder coat paint system gives a long lasting professional finish.
  • Modern cabinet aesthetics increase curb appeal with a pleasing design
  • Rust resistant screws, confirmed through 1500-hour salt spray testing, keep your unit looking sharp.

Are you wondering if the Rheem Prestige Variable Speed RA20 is right for you? Contact a Rheem Pro Partner today to learn more.