Advice From the Pros

Common HVAC Questions

Common New Home HVAC Questions

Common HVAC Questions
Are you buying a new home? Before you sign on the dotted line, here are some HVAC questions you need to ask your professional AC repair company.
Often new homeowners call us to to look at the air conditioner or furnace. During the call we discuss a lot of things about their HVAC system and, undoubtedly, we hear them say, “Oh, I didn’t know that about X”. Unfortunately, the seller doesn’t usually hand off a set of home instructions with the keys and that leaves the new buyer with a maze of appliances and other items to navigate. Below are some of the questions that we feel are the important to ask when you buy a new home.

Do I need to recalibrate my thermostat?

Yes. Always check the scheduling to make sure it works with your schedule. If you have a smart thermostat, like a Nest, then that thermostat has molded its scheduled around the previous owners lifestyle based on their movements and temperature settings. You need to go into the settings and reset the program to start reacting to your schedule.

Where are my air filters?

Although it may seem obvious, this is a big one. Many homes have multiple locations to place the filter and can risk “double filtering” your unit. This can be as hard on your system as running with a dirty filter.

Where are the emergency shutoffs?

Ask where to turn the gas off to furnaces and power off to air conditioning units in case you have an emergency that requires it.

What maintenance can you do as a homeowner?

There are many things that you can do to maintain your HVAC system to increase lifespan and efficiency. Just ask and we can show you.

Should you get annual maintenance on your heating and air conditioning systems?

Yes. Routine maintenance is the key to extending the lifespan and increasing the efficiency of your HVAC system.

Contact Gentry Air Conditioning today via our online contact form or call us at 817-488-6733.

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Prevent a Furnace Breakdown

Furnace Breakdown: What You Need To Know

Prevent a Furnace Breakdown

Changing your air filter is one way to prevent a furnace breakdown.

A furnace breakdown is never convenient. They could happen in the middle of the night, or on a holiday! Before you call your HVAC repair company, run through these steps to see if it is a quick fix.

No heat and no air coming out of vent

If you are experiencing this with your heater then communication has been lost between the thermostat and the main unit, which is caused by a power failure.
  • Change the batteries in your thermostat. Sometimes the screen will still work on the thermostat when the batteries are bad, but there isn’t enough power left to send a signal to the furnace
  • Check the breaker in your main panel. This should be clearly labeled “heat”, “furnace”, or “AHU”. Even if the breaker looks set, go ahead and reset it to be sure
  • Check for a light switch near your furnace. This switch controls the power to the furnace and all to often we find them OFF after someone has gone into the attic

No heat, but air coming out of vent

Furnaces have many safety functions, and the scenario of no heat with normal air coming out of the vent is one of them. If your furnace fails to light then the blower will come on run non-stop as a safety precaution.
  • Look for a sight-glass and a flashing light on your furnace. If there is an error with the unit then you should see the lights flashing in a pattern. Make note of the pattern or record it with your phone and then reset the power. Sometimes it is just a one time issue, sometimes it continues. If it continues, call an HVAC professional.

Furnace cuts on and off intermittently

 This issue can be tricky and can be caused by several different things, but some of the most common are: dirty air filter, corroded flame sensor, and other intermittent failures.
  • Replace your air filter. If the air filter gets too dirty, then the furnace wont get enough air and will overheat. Once it cools down, the furnace will come back on.
  • With the power off, you can remove the door to the burner compartment and look for the flame sensor. It is a thin metal rod positioned in front of the burners. They commonly get corroded and need to be sanded down. It is recommended that you have an HVAC professional complete this task for you.
  • Other common failures are: circuit board, pressure switch, weakening safety switches, induced draft motor, ignitor plate, blower motor.
Please keep in mind that working on a furnace heating system is a very dangerous task and should only be handled by qualified professionals. If you have checked off these basic items and your furnace is still not heating, then call your local HVAC repair company to come out and take a look.

Contact Gentry Air Conditioning today via our online contact form or call us at 817-488-6733.

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Changing your Home Air Filter

How To Change Your Home Air Filter In 5 Easy Steps

Changing your Home Air Filter

This sounds like an easy task, but we get questions all the time how, where, and when to change your home air filter. Below is a quick guide for you.

1) Locate the filters.

Look for large vents in your home. Sometimes these vents hold your filters. You can tell if filters are there by simply looking into the vent to see. If the filters are not there, then proceed to the indoor unit location. Some units have a filter door that is hinged and clearly labeled. Other units may require you to remove the door on the unit itself.

2) Make sure the unit is not running.

If you try to pull out or insert a filter with the unit running, you could risk damaging the filter or the unit itself if the filter gets caught up in the blower

3) Determine the size of the filter.

Most filters have the size clearly labeled on one of the sides. If it does not have the size printed, you can measure the outside dimensions. If you do this, bring your tape measure with you to the store when purchasing a new filter. The sizes printed on the filters are often rounded up for simplicity and you do not want to get one too big or small. Example: filter actually measures 15-1/2″x24-1/2″ but the print says it is a 16×25. Also check the thickness.

4) Select your new filter.

There are a myriad of options (and prices) out there when it comes to filters. In our opinion, do not waste your time with the filter that promises to cure every aliment in the world. At a minimum, get a filter that is pleated and does not cost more than $15 each. As a rule of thumb, thicker filters last longer if your HVAC system has the opening to hold them

5) How often to change it.

This one is different for every house. Many factors contribute to this including, pets, kids, in/out traffic, home cleanliness, home construction, and desired level of air quality. The rule is that the filter should be changed every 30 days. Our practical advice is to start with every 30 days and look at your filter before replacing. If you do not notice any dust, then put it back in and check 30 days later. Once the dust is visible then it is time to change. Do not let it go past 90 days.

Contact Gentry Air Conditioning today via our online contact form or call us at 817-488-6733.

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