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Having air conditioning can be really important, especially in areas of the country where it's very warm during the summer months. Sometimes, though, these AC units refuse to work the way they should, and that can mean a very uncomfortable house. If it's too warm it can be difficult to do things, and can also be hard to sleep at night. Fortunately, finding the problem and getting it fixed will get you back to a more comfortable temperature inside your home. There can be a lot of different reasons for a non-working air conditioning unit, and freezing up is one of those reasons.

Can an AC Unit Really Freeze Up?

It's supposed to be blowing cold air, so the idea that it could freeze up may seem odd. But there are plenty of parts of an air conditioner that need to stay warm, or at least warm enough to keep things moving. By working with 4 Seasons Heating & Air, you can get to the bottom of why your AC unit is freezing up, so you can get it fixed and then keep it maintained the right way. Living in the Alpharetta, GA area means you need air conditioning, and when it doesn't work it's uncomfortable, frustrating, and can even be dangerous because of the heat and humidity throughout the summertime.

The Most Common Causes of AC Freezes

Not having good airflow is the most common cause for an air conditioner to freeze up. The coil has to stay warm, and if the air isn't flowing around it the coil will get cold from the refrigerant running through it. It gets so cold that it freezes and can even get frost or ice on the outside of it. Low refrigerant levels and a fan that's not working right are also commonly seen reasons for an AC unit to freeze. Generally it will still sound like it's running properly, but the temperature in the house is a great indicator that something isn't working the way it should be.

Alpharetta’s Leading Heating and Cooling Company

If your air conditioning unit is freezing up or experiencing other problems, reach out to 4 Seasons Heating & Air today. We will be happy to figure out the cause of the problem and get it taken care of, so you can have a comfortable home once again. We even offer 24 hour emergency service, and can give you a free consultation or estimate so you can decide how to proceed. Air conditioners and furnaces both need maintenance and repair from time to time, and we're here to meet all your HVAC needs.

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Thinking of pursuing career options in the HVAC industry? You've come to the right place. The need for certified, experienced HVAC workers continues to grow in the Alpharetta, Georgia area. While some people think of sales and service positions as the most available openings, the following list will give you some insight into just a few of the career paths this industry has to offer.

HVAC Career Paths

According to Projections Central estimates, the US will have almost 50,000 more HVAC mechanic positions open up between 2016 and 2026. The need for skilled professionals from entry-level to management personnel and engineers continues to rise.

Most people serious about building a life-long career built around heating, ventilation and air conditioning start by getting a technician certification. It typically takes about a year to learn the basics. Achieving certifications qualifies course participants for entry-level jobs, apprenticeship arrangements and some on-the-job brand retraining positions.

A typical day in the field for a technician, sometimes called an HVAC mechanic, may include service calls for preventative maintenance, changing filters, replacing thermostats, helping a journeyman install a new system, cleaning duct work, educating homeowners about safe operating practices and other general duties.

  1. Customer service representative: Front line employee who can assist customers with system operating advice, schedule appointments, help homeowners file a warranty claim and manage other interactions on the telephone, via digital chat and email, or in-person.
  2. Sales: Includes show room and door-to-door community education campaigns. Sales agents work closely with the public, so excellent communication is a requirement.
  3. Commercial inspector: Performs energy audits, inspects equipment for government agencies, real estate professionals, investors and other organizations with an interest is making sure buildings are safe, habitable and up to code.
  4. HVAC system designer: Works closely with architects, environmental agencies, commercial developers and industry experts to design and test HVAC systems for commercial and residential use that are eco-friendly, energy-efficient and compatible with clean air standards to improve indoor air quality.
  5. Professional installer: This career path is primarily seen in commercial settings, such as install or replacing a system in a hospital or a high-rise apartment. Professional installers typically do not perform other routine maintenance tasks.

Exceptional Heating and Cooling Services in GA

Whether you are considering pursuing a career in the HVAC industry, or you want to learn more about 4 Seasons Heating & Air services, please contact us via our online system or contact us to speak with a customer service representative in our Alpharetta, Georgia office.

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If you’ve ever experienced any condition that makes breathing more difficult than it should be, then you know how frightening shortness of breath can be. Conditions that cause respiratory difficulties can stem from a number of different causal factors. For most of us, shortness of breath is a passing event that can be easily remedied. However, for those suffering from asthma, shortness of breath is a part of life and something that requires constant attention.

More often than not, the normal function of an air conditioner will not trigger an asthma attack. Ordinarily, the promotion of a cool and comfortable environment will help to prevent asthma attacks. Still, there are a few exceptions to this rule.

Dust and Mold

While dust and mold will naturally accumulate in any home- these pollutants will accumulate inside the ducts and central unit of any HVAC system more than in any other area. This is due to the simple fact that the interior spaces of an AC system cannot be cleaned on a regular basis. If you or anyone in your home is an asthma sufferer, the best thing you can do is to have your HVAC system cleaned annually and to install a high-quality HEPA filter.

Cold Air

In especially acute cases of asthma, the sudden shock of a blast of cold air can trigger an episode. This is especially true of elderly asthma sufferers and those who are in ill health for one reason or another. In these cases, it is advised that you keep the bed of the asthma sufferers away from vents and registers. It is also best to keep the thermostat set to a level which will not be shocking to the asthmatic in your home.

Beware of the Heating Function

Finally, while your AC does need to be cleaned and optimized for the comfort of anyone with a respiratory condition, you should keep in mind that your HVAC heating function may be more likely to cultivate mold which can be especially dangerous for persons with asthma.

For best results, you should consult your doctor to determine what is and what is not dangerous for any asthmatic living in your home. Then you should consult your local HVAC professional to set your AC system up correctly and make it run in an optimal fashion.

Your Heating and Cooling Experts in Alpharetta

To learn more on how to optimize your HVAC system for maximum comfort and value, get in touch with the experts at 4 Seasons Heating & Air today. Our professional HVAC staff here in the main office in Alpharetta, GA are waiting to answer all of your important questions!

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Ceiling fans have been around since the late 19th century and helped keep homes cool and comfortable until air conditioning units and systems became available and affordable in the 1950s and 1960s. Today, ceiling fans are thought to be more of a summer asset. However, using your AC system and your ceiling fan together can actually help you to save money while keeping your home comfortable.

How Ceiling Fans and Air Conditioning Interact

Having a ceiling fan circulate the air in your room can make you feel up to five degrees cooler. Think wind chill in the winter. That means you'll enjoy the same degree of comfort while spending less on energy. The fewer times your condenser cycles on and off, the less energy you'll use. According to Home Guides.com, the average household will save around $30 per month.

You'll need to position your fan so that it's pushing the air down - not drawing it up. Don't get hung up thinking about clockwise vs. counterclockwise. It can be different on different fans. Your fan should have a switch that changes the direction of the blades. This is often located at the base of the fan.

Set your fan on low vs. the highest setting. You'll use more energy, the faster the fan goes and, according to "Consumer Reports," there is little comfort to be gained with the faster setting. You'll also want to replace your old, inefficient fan with a new, energy-efficient fan. This one step can save you around 60 percent on the cost of running your fan.

Keep in mind that ceiling fans only make people and pets feel more comfortable. Unlike cooling systems, they don't actually cool the air. That means you'll want to make sure to turn the fan off when you exit the room.

To learn more about ways to stay cool and maximize your cooling system's efficiency in your Atlanta area home, contact Four Seasons Heating and Air in Alpharetta today! We've been helping homeowners like you keep their homes comfortable year round for more than 40 years.

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Whether the days are scorching hot or the nights freezing cold, it might seem like you can never find the right temperature to fall into a deep and restful night. Does the temperature of your home affect your ability to get a good snooze? It certainly does.

Body Temperature Drops before You Drop Off

Did you know that just before you nod off your body temperature actually drops a degree or two? Your body is powering down and telling active systems that it is time to recharge your battery. When your brain achieves that perfect cool temperature, you fall asleep.

Tossing Off Covers When it's Too Hot and Piling on the Blankets at 2 AM

Your body will work to maintain an even temperature all night long, but the heat gets trapped in the mattress, your pillow, or escapes through the thin sheets. How many times do you wake up in a tangle of sticky sheets? Or perhaps you are always reaching for the extra blanket in the middle of the night. Every time that your body insists it is too hot or too cold, you are interrupting your natural sleep patterns.

The Just Right Temp will Help You Sleep All Night Long

Medical professionals all agree that for the best night's sleep you must find the temperature that works best for you. An extra pair of socks or a ceiling fan can do wonders.

Routine HVAC Maintenance can Save Your Sanity and Your Sleep

Whether you have a single-room air conditioner or central AC, it will have air filters and coolant levels. The air conditioning only works best when it has sufficient airflow for the heat exchanger and compressor to efficiently cool that humid Southern night air. When you schedule bi-annual maintenance with 4 Seasons Heating & Air, the technician will clean out the coils, change the filters, and check the coolant level so that your unit will provide that perfect dry cool air that supports hours of deep restorative sleep.

The Alpharetta HVAC professionals at 4 Seasons Heating & Air are here to help you with achieving your best night's sleep. A well-balanced air conditioning or heating system will ensure that your bedroom can reach that perfect temperature for a sound sleep all year long. Give our pros a call to schedule your next appointment and sleep soundly all summer long.

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Each year, Lennox grants the coveted Centurion Award to just 25 HVAC dealers across the U.S. The award marks top performing companies that are recognized community and industry leaders. Dave Lennox Award winners are expected to serve customers with honor and a unique level of service. Categories include the quality of installations and the level of customer service. Candidates are up against every professional contractor in the industry. Lennox reviews a company's business practices, with an emphasis on both technical expertise and sales growth Typical winners maintain a high level of excellence across the board for many years.

Top Centurion Winner

Four Seasons Heating & Air Conditioning consistently wins the Centurion Award because we are dedicated to our customers and community. We have knowledge and experience of the premium Lennox brand of heating and cooling systems. Even though it often takes many years to achieve the market share and confidence of customers required for the Centurion Award, some dealers manage to maintain their track record over time. We have received it for the last 5 years and is Lennox's top volume dealer in the nation.

Another prestigious Lennox award is the Circle of Excellence Award, given to just 40 dealers across the U.S. for sales and leadership excellence. Four Seasons has received the Circle of Excellence Award for the past 5 years.

Products and Services

Four Seasons uses only the highest quality HVAC products, including the popular Lennox brand. Its technicians are certified by the manufacturers to install and repair equipment and ensure that clients stay comfortable year-round. Here are some of the services that keep them at the top of the list for awards:

  • Professional A/C installation and replacement
  • A/C and furnace maintenance
  • Reliable A/C and furnace repair
  • Furnace installation or replacement
  • Heating and cooling system maintenance
  • Emergency Service

Centurion Award winners respect your home and bring the tools and equipment to do the job right the first time, every time. So, the next time you have questions on your heating and cooling system needs, choose the best of the best in Alpharetta, GA.

Contact Us

For 40 years, Four Seasons Heating & Air has provided the Alpharetta area with outstanding the heating and cooling services, so that your family can be comfortable all year long. When you know you can come home to reliable comfort, it's one less thing to worry about. Go with a company with a proven track record as an industry leader and contact us today!

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What Do Air Conditioning Filters Do?

Air conditioning filters catch dirt, grime, and other particulate matter and prevent it from building up on the air conditioning coils. If the coils get too dirty the quality of the indoor air is affected, with risks to health and damage to the environment as well as degradation of your aair conditioning system’s efficiency.

Filters must be cleaned or changed regularly. Dirty, old filters impede the free flow of air, causing the air conditioning system to run longer and work harder to keep the house cool. In turn, your electrical bill can be seriously impacted. Dirty filters can also lower the operating life of the air conditioning blower motor, leaving you with an expensive repair bill.

How Much Should You Pay for Air Conditioning Filters?

The short answer to the above question is that more expensive is not necessarily better. Every house, with its occupants and its air conditioning system, is different. Air filters have what is called a MERV rating depending on how much protection they provide. The cheapest, spun fiberglass filters have a 1 to 4 MERV rating. Disposable paper or polyester filters have a 5 to 7 MERV. Electrostatic self-charging filters made from paper fiber or cotton have a 2 to 10 MERV. The most expensive pleated filters, which tend to be thicker than the other kinds and are specially designed to fit their housing, run from 11 to 13 MERV.

In general you should choose the filter with the rating your air conditioning system is designed for. However if you have pets or smokers living in your home or people with asthma or other breathing problems, you might want to consider a higher-rated filter to keep your interior air fresh and your system running at peak efficiency.

For more questions on air conditioning filters or any aspect of air conditioning or heating, feel free to contact 4 Seasons Heating and Air in Alpharetta, GA. We have been handling the installation and servicing of air conditioning and heating systems for the North Atlanta area for the past 42 years, including 24-hour emergency service.

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Modern construction techniques mean that today's homes are more airtight than ever. While that's great news for your energy bills, it can mean a buildup of toxins, allergens and pollutants inside your home or office. With little to no ventilation, allergens and pollutants can follow you inside, clogging up the air you breathe. Even cleaning supplies add unpleasant chemicals to the air, so you need to find ways of cleaning your air and making every breath deep and easy.

Avoid Artificial Scents

While scented cleaning products may smell wonderful, they can also release dozens of chemicals into the air you breath. Even "natural" cleaning supplies are home to volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which can also lead to negative health side effects. If you want the clean scent of lemon or a floral aroma, try using dried flowers as a potpourri or using a lemon and baking soda cleaner. You'll still enjoy the fresh scent, but without the chemicals that can leave you choking, coughing or with a runny nose.

Keep Humidity Under Control

Installing a central air conditioning system is a great way to reduce indoor humidity. When the moisture in the air reaches levels above 50 percent, it can encourage mold growth. Not only does this mean you might need to replace sections of drywall and support beams, it also has a negative effect on air quality. If you don't want a central system, be prepared to regularly change any drip pans or install a separate dehumidifier.

Clean Floors Mean Cleaner Air

Sweeping moves a lot of dust, dirt and debris around your floors, but it isn't ideal for complete removal. To minimize the pollen count, keep pet dander under control and reduce the amount of dust mites in your home, invest in a good vacuum with a HEPA filter. Vacuum at least twice a week, and pay special attention to high traffic areas. If you keep your floors clean, you can prevent dust from kicking up into the air.

Air Conditioning Improves Air Quality

While avoiding aerosols, fragrance and controlling humidity are all a good start to improved indoor air quality, air conditioning is one of the most important parts of achieving a comfortable interior in your Alpharetta, GA hom. At 4 Seasons Heating and Air, we install and maintain central air conditioning units that automatically regulate temperature, humidity and filter your indoor air. When the temperatures rise, the last thing you want to do is open the windows, so contact us today for an estimate and information about installation.

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The larger the purchase, the more important it is to obtain a good warranty. The last thing you want is to invest in a major home repair, only to need repair or replacement in the first year or two. Warranties protect you against manufacturing defects that aren't necessarily obvious. Cars include extended warranties because few people would commit to such a large purchase knowing that any repairs are out of pocket. The same should be true for home improvement products.

HVAC Systems and Installation Costs

Installing a new central heating and air conditioning unit can cost as much as a moderately priced used car, or even as much as a new luxury vehicle depending on the size and scope of the project. Without a warranty, you could be facing another big bill for the same system within a few years. When you install a new system, be sure to shop warranties as part of the process. Here are a few things to look out for.

1. Warranty Term

How long does the warranty last from a specific manufacturer? HVAC systems should last for many years, and the warranty should reflect that. Seek out the longest term you can find, as long as the coverage is fairly complete.

2. Covered Parts and Terms

With an HVAC warranty, some parts may be covered for longer than others. It is not uncommon to see an air conditioning compressor with a 10-year warranty while the heat exchanger for the furnace advertises a 20-year warranty.

3. Parts or Parts and Labor

At 4 Seasons Heating & Air, you get a one year warranty that includes labor on all new installations. Many warranties may not cover any labor involved in a repair. Others may even have terms that can void your warranty, like a required annual maintenance visit from an approved contractor. Get all the of details before you decide.

Getting an extended warranty can help minimize your financial liability. In Alpharetta, GA, where air conditioning units run for a lot longer than a couple of months each year, you want a unit you can trust and cost controls on potential repairs. Contact us today to learn more about our warranties and service contracts.

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Couple in HomeIMPORTANT FACT: It is not easy to stay balanced. In fact, we live in a cluttered, unbalanced world and many of us cannot even identify the areas of our life that may need attention. Our daily routines are very similar: wake up, eat, work, eat, sleep…. do over. If you do not take time to think about the varying aspects of your life, it is honestly simple to lose balance.

MORE IMPORTANT FACT: If you are concerned about the efficiency or comfort provided by your air conditioning system or if you are about to make a major purchase of a new heating and cooling system then you should learn about what air diagnostics and balancing can do for your home.

A "comfort balance" is simply checking to see whether the room feels comfortably conditioned. It may be as easy as walking from room to room, holding a hand up to the ceiling to see if sufficient air is coming out of the registers, and asking yourself if you are comfortable. If you are not, it may be as simple as adjusting the airflow coming from a register for many of your complaints are associated with air circulation: too much and too little.

However, to a 4 Seasons Heating & Air Comfort Specialist, air balance is quite different. In its simplest form, air diagnostics and balancing is the process of testing and adjusting your air conditioning system to deliver the right amount of air to each room in your home. The actual Air Balancing process includes a number of related tests that determine the performance of your air conditioning and heating system.

It is not uncommon to find a system 30% to 50% low on airflow. Air passes through your HVAC equipment and carries the heating or cooling inside. The effectiveness of the equipment is entirely dependent on the amount of airflow. When our certified technician measures the airflow he can "see" system performance.

With this information he can diagnose, repair and balance the duct system for maximum system performance. The end result is having rooms that are the same temperature, cleaner air, better humidity control and real energy savings.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that replacing your furnace or air conditioner is the only way to lower your utility bills. Those big boxes that heat and cool are reliant upon the distribution system that delivers cold or warm air to each room. If a contractor doesn't check them then they are only addressing part of the puzzle. Compare it to installing a brand-new race car engine in an old, beat-up sedan.

Air balancing means measuring and adjusting the volume of airflow into each room. By doing this, every room in your home will be as comfortable as possible with the equipment you have installed.

ULTRA IMPORTANT FACT: Just as your car runs more smoothly and requires less energy to go faster and farther when the wheels are in perfect alignment, you perform better when your thoughts, emotions and goals are in balance. Additionally, with a balanced checkbook and balanced air inside your house, how can you not sit back and say, “Balance is Beautiful.”

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Air BalancingIf you are concerned about the efficiency or comfort provided by your heating and air conditioning system or if you are about to make a major purchase of a new heating or air conditioning system than you should learn about what air diagnostics and balancing can do for your home.

In its simplest form, air diagnostics and balancing is the process of testing and adjusting your air conditioning system to deliver the right amount of air to each room in your home. The actual Air Balancing process includes a number of related tests that determine the performance of your air conditioning and heating system.

Air balancing hoods are used to measure the amount of air at each grille. Manometers measure system pressures. Hygrometers measure system temperature and humidity. The results of all these tests are compiled into a report to determine how well your system is functioning.

What Air Diagnostics & Balancing Can Do For Your System

It’s not uncommon to find a system 30% to 50% low on airflow. Air passes through the equipment and carries the heating or cooling inside. The effectiveness of the equipment is entirely dependent on the amount of airflow. When your certified technician measures the airflow he can "see" system performance.

With this information he can diagnose, repair and balance the duct system for maximum system performance. The end result is having rooms that are the same temperature, cleaner air, better humidity control and real energy savings.

Why This Service Is So Special

Air balancing is an ancient trade dating back to 1732 when a French Engineer named Henri Pitot created a method for measuring fluid pressure. Even though air balancing is critical to the performance of your air conditioning and heating system, less than 5000 individuals in the world are trained and certified in air balancing today.

Who can Do Air Diagnostics and Balancing?

Air DiagnosticsYour heating and cooling system is a candidate for improvement. A contractor with the right tools and training can improve the performance of virtually any system. The more accessible your ductwork is, the easier it is to perform balancing and duct renovation work.

NCI Certified technicians are different than standard HVAC technicians. Most companies are in business to just fix or replace heating and cooling equipment. Your certified Air Balancing Technician considers the entire system and is qualified to test, diagnose, and repair your ducts as well as your equipment.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that replacing your furnace or air conditioner is the only way to lower your utility bills. Those big boxes that heat and cool are reliant upon the distribution system that delivers cold or warm air to each room. If a contractor doesn't check them then they are only addressing part of the puzzle. Compare it to installing a brand-new race car engine on an old beat up sedan.

A heating contractor with diagnostic experience should always check the Static Pressure of your system whenever repairing or planning to replace your heating and/or cooling equipment. A familiar comparison is when you go to your doctor; someone always checks your blood pressure. Like blood pressure, Static Pressure is one of the key vital signs of your comfort system.

This test helps your contractor identify any significant blockage or leakage. With this initial testing along with an in-depth interview, your contractor can recommend the appropriate diagnostic tests followed by recommendations to correct existing issues and optimize your home’s comfort and energy efficiency.
 
Air balancing means measuring and adjusting the volume of airflow into each room. By doing this, every room in your home will be as comfortable as possible with the equipment you have on hand.

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Couple Around ComputerIMPORTANT FACT: Your home is a special place.  It is where you rest, relax, and recharge. Normally when someone buys a house with a forced air heating and cooling system, they pretty much expect the duct system that delivers the air to be in perfect working condition. With today's demands for the highest efficiency, you may likely find that your duct system isn't performing in the best way possible.

The duct system is a series of tubes that carry the warm and cool air from your air conditioning and heating equipment into your home and then take it back to the equipment. They control how much air is delivered to each room. The right amount of air will keep the room temperatures where they need to be. If ducts are damaged, improperly installed or the wrong size, they can cut your system's ability to heat or cool by more than half on hot or cold days, when you need it the most.

MORE IMPORTANT FACT: Improperly sized or designed ductwork is the most common reason people are not comfortable in their own homes. Imagine for a moment that your air conditioner is your lungs. Now imagine that you are running a 1-mile race. If you are in good shape you should have no problem. Now imagine that you have to run that same 1-mile race breathing through a cocktail straw. No matter how good of shape you are in, you will never be able to run as fast and easily as if you could breathe normally. This inability to breathe is what happens when your air conditioner is forced to operate through improperly sized ductwork.

A 30% return duct leak on a hot or cold day can decrease your heating or cooling capacity more than 50%. That may sound extreme, but it's not an uncommon condition.

Ducts move air, and air is invisible. So to determine if your ducts work or not, air properties must be measured. A 4 Seasons Heating & Air Comfort Specialist is able to measure how much air goes to each room and compare it to how much is needed. He will also take other measurements including temperatures and pressures to determine how well your ducts work, then will review the results of these test with you.

Unfortunately few have the knowledge or own the tools and instruments to measure the performance of your duct system. If they can't measure it, they have no idea how to fix it, or even where to begin. They assume that the ducts are just fine.

The typical duct renovation includes removing damaged ducts, straightening them, adding proper suspension and sealing all the joints. Sometimes larger ducts need to be installed to certain rooms or the registers and grilles need to be replaced. Other improvements might include adjusting fan speeds or improving your air filtration system.

Some contractors will offer to seal your ducts to improve efficiency. While duct sealing is definitely done as part of a renovation, sealing by itself cannot address many of the flaws in a duct system. In many cases, just sealing the duct can make the problem worse, as it could choke down airflow causing equipment failure, major comfort problems. In extreme cases, it has caused back-drafting of flues leading to dangerous carbon monoxide problems.

ULTRA IMPORTANT FACT: Duct tape is found in every home toolbox and is the go-to, fix-all for many minor repairs. But, duct tape does not adequately seal the joints and has a short lifespan. If your air conditioning system is struggling to finish that 1-mile race, it needs more than a bigger straw and duct tape. So, leave the duct tape for the Apollo 13 astronauts who used it to make a repair on their return to Earth from the moon and put the straw in your chocolate milk shake!

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Home Heating and CoolingMost people confuse topics like an Energy Star rating with how efficiently their heating and cooling system is really operating. National Comfort Institute Certified Contractors use what they call an SER rating.

SER™ is a relatively new standard in the air conditioning and heating industry. It stands for System Efficiency Ratio. It's an efficiency rating of your installed system, including the effects of the ducting and the construction of your home.

When a typical heating and cooling contractor quotes the efficiency of the equipment (SEER or AFUE) and leads you to believe the new equipment will automatically deliver that efficiency, think again.

Typical installed equipment only operates at 55% to 70% of rated capacity. A 4 Seasons Heating & Air technician is trained and certified and will field-measure the installed efficiency of your old system. He may then recommend improvements while installing your new equipment and will then measure the new system's performance to prove the new system is functioning as designed. By taking this approach, we will help insure that you get the comfort and energy savings you're paying for.

It's Simple Math

Testing your HVAC system for the SER is Simple MathWhen we measure the SER™ of your system, the test reveals the ratio of actual heating or cooling delivery compared to the rated amount the equipment produced when the manufacturer tested the equipment.
For example if an air conditioner worked perfectly, it would be rated at a CSER™ of 100%. But if it only delivered half the cooling, the CSER would be 50%. In simple terms, 14 SEER air conditioning equipment could only operate like 7 SEER equipment. HSER™ and CSER™ HSER stands for Heating System Efficiency Ratio - it rates your heating system's efficiency. CSER represents Cooling System Efficiency Ratio and rates the efficiency of your air conditioning system.

This rating provides specific information about the performance of your system that has never been available to consumers before. More important, the testing that establishes the rating identifies exactly what needs to be done to your system to improve your comfort and efficiency.

You Can Increase Your SER Rating

While new high efficiency heating and cooling equipment may help, the number one factor in determining system efficiency is your duct system. Heating and cooling travels through ducts that are often too restrictive, damaged, poorly maintained, or improperly designed and installed from the beginning.

Your certified contractor can fix many of these problems and increase your SER. An NCI certified Combustion Analyst can also measure and adjust your furnace's combustion efficiency for maximum fuel savings.

Plan for Your Testing Today

Make sure to set aside ample time for your contractor to test your system. The time required depends on the size of your home. Normally, the testing takes between one and two hours. But stay for the show. The testing is clean, informative and entertaining.

It's important to understand that equipment ratings are only the potential efficiency of that component of the system under perfect conditions. Think of it as trying to rate your car's mpg based on just testing the motor by itself. Your expectations should be realistic. Most home's won't rate at 100% efficient. It has been done before, but it's very difficuem's efficiency depends on the duct system and the field-installation.

SER ratings of 90 or better are frequently achieved what s more important is that your system efficiency can often be increased by 25 to 50 the biggest benefit increase in comfort you will enjoy every day actually getting heating and cooling are paying for

Don't be fooled by imitations, as there are less than 5000 technicians in the world. 4 Seasons Heating & Air technicians are certified to perform this testing to protect your investment and to ensure the safety, efficiency, health, and comfort of your home.

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Carbon Monoxide is the #1 cause of poisonings in the U.S. Yet, less than 5% of all CO Poisonings are reported! The safe and efficient operation of your heating equipment and other combustion appliances cannot be determined without testing using a calibrated combustion analyzer. Because the technology, instruments and training to do this testing correctly have only been available for a few years, odds are it's never been done. Your service technician should be certified to properly test and diagnose potential CO exposure.

Carbon Monoxide TestIt's About Your Health and Safety:?Carbon monoxide, even in small quantities can cause serious health problems, particularly in children and the elderly. Millions of unsuspecting homeowners are exposed to low levels of CO and don't even know it. Unfortunately U.L. Listed CO alarms don't go off until your family has been exposed to 70ppm (parts per million) for over 3-1/2 hours! Most international limits for unsafe levels, including OSHA and the World Health Organization's guidelines are between at 15-35 ppm. Carbon monoxide can come from additional sources in your home besides your heating equipment, and they should be checked. These sources include your Water Heater, Gas Range, Gas Logs, Space Heater, and Boiler - even an attached garage.

Even New Equipment Needs to Be Tested:?Anytime equipment is installed, it's being exposed to conditions in which it has never been tested to perform. Venting systems, combustion air, duct systems, additional appliances in the building, building pressure etc., can all affect its operation. Besides that, after leaving the factory it's likely your equipment has been loaded and unloaded on trucks and transported several times. Vibration and shock can cause components to shift and move. The only way to truly know if your new equipment is operating safely and efficiently is to test it once it's been installed.

Better Contractors Don't Guess:?They measure. If CO testing is part of your contractor's normal protocols he will advise you of this prior to servicing or installing equipment. Odds are when the tech walks into you house he'll be carrying some type of CO Monitor to immediately check if unsafe CO levels are present. When working on the equipment, he will likely drill a hole in the flue of the appliance, and insert the probe of an electronic combustion analyzer to check actual burner performance. Additional performance testing might require holes to be drilled into the ductwork as well. Once he's finished testing he should provide documentation and review his results with you.

What Should I Expect From My Heating Contractor?

As a consumer you should expect your contractor to be trained in current technology that makes sure you're heating system is safe, comfortable and efficient. These are probably things you may expect are mandatory, but unfortunately they're not. The number one benefit of having an NCI Certified CO/Combustion Analyst test your home and appliances for carbon monoxide is his extensive training and knowledge.

Your contractor should be trained to measure the safety and efficiency of all your combustion equipment, even appliances that he doesn't normally sell or service. Thorough testing can also verify that your equipment is operating at peak efficiency and provide the lowest operating costs. Finally, he should provide you with documentation that explains what he has found and what corrections have been or need to be performed. He should also provide you with material to better educate you about carbon monoxide sources and health effects.

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Couple Looking at ScreenNormally when someone buys a house with a forced air heating and cooling system, they pretty much expect the duct system that delivers the air to be in perfect working condition. With today's demands for the highest efficiency you may likely find that your duct system isn't performing in the best way possible.

For example: A 30% return duct leak on a hot or cold day can decrease your heating or cooling capacity more than 50% that may sound extreme, but it's not an uncommon condition.

Why is My Duct System So Important?

The duct system is a series of conduits that carry the warm and cool air from your air conditioning and heating equipment into your home and then take it back to the equipment.

The ducts also control how much air is delivered to each room. The right amount of air will keep the room temperatures where they need to be. If ducts are damaged, improperly installed or the wrong size, they can cut your system's ability to heat or cool by more than half on hot or cold days, when you need it the most.

How Do I Know How Well My System Is Working?

Ducts move air, and air is invisible. So to determine if your ducts work or not, air properties must be measured. A 4 Seasons Heating & Air certified professional can measure how much air goes to each room and compare it to how much is needed. He will also take other measurements including temperatures and pressures to determine how well your ducts work and will review the results of the test with you.

Unfortunately, few have the knowledge or own the tools and instruments to measure the performance of your duct system. If they can't measure it, they have no idea how to fix it, or even where to begin. They assume that the ducts are just fine.

What Can Be Done To Improve My Duct System?

The typical duct renovation includes removing damaged ducts, straightening them, adding proper suspension and sealing all the joints. Sometimes larger ducts need to be installed to certain rooms or the registers and grilles need to be replaced. Your 4 Seasons Heating & Air professional will review the test results with you and make recommendations for duct repairs or additions. Other improvements might include adjusting fan speeds or improving your air filtration system.

Other may offer to seal your ducts to improve efficiency. While duct sealing is definitely done as part of a renovation, sealing by itself cannot address many of the flaws in a duct system. In many cases, just sealing the duct can make the problem worse, as it could choke down airflow causing equipment failure, major comfort problems. In extreme cases, it has caused back-drafting of flues leading to dangerous carbon monoxide problems.

The Duct Testing & Renovation Process

Our 4 Seasons Heating & Air professional will first ask you questions about the system, what you like and don't like about it, problem areas, air quality concerns, health issues, etc. He will then perform some preliminary testing to determine the condition of your system, the biggest problem areas, and so forth. This is generally performed using several instruments including a manometer that measures your systems pressure, much like a doctor checks blood pressure.

Your professional will typically measure the amount of air coming out of each vent with a special instrument called a “Flow Hood.” Other measurements might include temperature, humidity and carbon monoxide testing.

Your 4 Seasons professional will test and adjust the results of the work when the duct renovation? has been completed. This step is called air balancing. Up to just 10 years ago, air balancing was performed only on large commercial buildings. Today you can get this same precision adjustment in your home.

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WineFACT: Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air, whether inside or out. It varies according to the temperature and pressure of the air. The warmer the air, the more water vapor it can hold.

If you happen to be a bottle of wine….the ideal temperature range is 55-58 degrees and 55-75% relative humidity. Why?

IMPORTANT FACT: Wine ages inside a glass bottle sealed with a natural cork. The security of the cork is extremely important because the cork controls the amount of oxygen that reaches your wine. Too little, and a wine will not be able to reach its full potential. Too much, and the wine will spoil. Cork is a great natural material for sealing liquids, because it expands to prevent leaks. However, corks can dry out too much if the humidity is too low. An over-dry cork will shrink, letting too much air into the bottle and causing cork taint. Too much humidity, on the other hand, can lead to mold on the cork.

MOST IMPORTANT FACT: 55-75% humidity in your home is not healthy. Maintaining a relative humidity below 50% prevents dust mite infestations, mold and mildew growth, and inhibits bacteria. This lower relative humidity (RH) also reduces the out-gassing of volatile organic compounds. In wintertime, humidity levels must be even lower, generally 30 to 40% - to prevent condensation on windows and other surfaces.

Herein lies a problem: With indoor humidity of less than 30%, health problems can develop, including dry noses and throats that make people more susceptible to upper respiratory illnesses. Skin dryness and irritation may also occur. And, there are harmful microbes that prefer excessively dry air.

On a winter day, 40 degree F outside with an outdoor RH of 60%, turning on the heater to warm the air inside your home to 70 degrees causes the RH indoors to drop to 21%. This is extremely low. Now, consider this - the average relative humidity in the Sahara Desert is 25%.?

As a homeowner, it is important to measure and control relative humidity levels throughout the entire home, since the humidity levels in the air may change drastically through the heating and cooling processes. These processes can then lead to extreme highs or lows in the relative humidity levels indoors.

If you suspect unhealthy or uncomfortable conditions in your home due to the humidity being too high or too low, it is wise to purchase a digital thermo-hygrometer AKA moisture meter or humidity sensor. This handy instrument digitally calculates temperature and measures indoor relative humidity levels. It can store the minimum and maximum temperature and relative humidity as well as provide up-to-date readings of the present conditions. This unit allows you to evaluated the RH levels in your home and understand the RH patterns, such as highs and lows, that exist.

ULTA IMPORTANT FACT: The only thing that is comfortable when the temperature is in the mid-50’s with a relative humidity between 55 to 75% is your favorite wine.

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