image of question mark depicting question of air conditioner sizing

The hot season pushes your air conditioner to its limit. If you have an older unit, it might not operate as it should during this time. An air conditioner replacement becomes apparent when your system breaks down more often than it did before. You might start to wonder what kind of cooling unit will work best to suit your current needs. Many think that getting the same model is a good idea. However, this only means you are also repeating the same cooling mistakes. Some might think buying the biggest one they can find will cool their homes faster. This is false and it is always recommended to consider the specific household needs and factors to find the best air conditioner for you. For any air conditioner to meet your needs, however, you will need to take air conditioner sizing into consideration.

The Manual J Load Calculation & Its Importance

The Manual J load calculation factors in the different influences that affect your home’s cooling needs. A licensed HVAC contractor performs this complex calculation. Some might utilize advanced software to get a faster and more precise result. Your house’s characteristics are quantified in the process, including:

The calculation will give your home’s cooling load, so you don’t have to take a guess when buying your next air conditioner. You will know the exact size you need.

Cooling Comfort

family spending time indoors in comfortable home

One of the responsibilities of an air conditioner is to keep your home comfortable. Cooling is just a part of this as your system also dehumidifies your home. This is done via condensation. What happens is that the vapor turns into water when humid air touches the coils. The water is then disposed of through a drainage pipe. However, if you have a unit that’s too large, the rooms are cooled down quicker than usual. The cycle ends before your air conditioner can adequately dehumidify your home. Therefore, high humidity will still prevail indoors, making you and your family feel sticky and uncomfortable. Homeowners will then lower the thermostat temperature to remedy this. However, this will only increase energy consumption. A unit that is too large can also lead to poor indoor air quality. This is because the system forces less air through the filters, so the cleaning is disrupted.

On the other hand, having a unit that is too small will have a hard time meeting your home’s cooling needs. It will take longer to reach the set temperature. It might not even be able to cool your home correctly on scorching hot days. The air conditioner that is too small will overwork but still fail to reach the target temperature. This will cause the parts to wear out faster, requiring frequent repairs. You might even have to deal with an early replacement.

Air Conditioner Efficiency

energy efficient homeA highly efficient air conditioning unit means it has a high SEER rating. This allows it to convert electricity into cooling power effectively. However, some homeowners think this is the only factor needed. However, as mentioned above, sizing is also an important factor.

If you have a mismatched unit, meaning the unit size does not match your home, then unit’s SEER rating will not be maximized. The unit will run at subpar levels with short or extended cycles. This will consume a lot of energy and increase component wear and tear. As a result, you will have an inefficient air conditioner. Therefore, avoid buying a new cooling unit with a high SEER rating if it is not the correct size for your home.

Cost Of Air Conditioner

An incorrectly sized air conditioning unit costs you more from the start. When an air conditioner has a higher energy output, the more expensive it is. Therefore, it is essential to factor in your cooling needs before buying the unit. It might end up short cycling, wasting a lot of energy, and wearing out the parts faster. This will significantly reduce the system’s efficiency, so you’ll have high utility bills every month. Worn-out parts will also lead to frequent repairs and premature breakdowns.

Don’t spend more than you need to by having a correctly-sized air conditioner from the start. Instead, get a Manual J calculation from a licensed professional. It is a worthy investment that will save you money.

The Problem With Air Conditioning Units That Are Too Large

image of humidity levels

To reiterate, units that are too large cause your house to cool faster. The unit short cycles, so it cannot lower the indoor humidity, and the air is not filtered sufficiently. It also performs at a sub-optimal level, so energy consumption increases. Your home will end up feeling cold but humid. Indoor air quality plummets. It also means you spent more than you need to for the unit as bigger units are costlier than smaller ones.

The Problem With AC Units That Are Too Small

A unit that is too small causes just as many problems. This is because the air conditioner does not have the cooling power to support your home’s needs. It is hard for it to cool it down properly and, therefore, unable to bring you relief from the summer heat outside. The unit will also run continuously but will still fail to reach the desired temperature. This overstrains the air conditioner, stressing its components in the process. The equipment will then experience premature breakdowns, and you’ll face an early replacement.

Conclusion

Selecting an air conditioner does not mean you have to go to extremes. Having the smallest or biggest unit does not guarantee that it is the best one for your home. Keep in mind that every home has varying needs. Therefore, the suitable unit should meet all the requirements your home has.

Air conditioner size is essential because it affects your home’s comfort, efficiency, and cost. Do not rely on general rules of thumb. It is always recommended that you consult a licensed HVAC contractor to help you. They have the necessary tools and knowledge to calculate the AC size needed for your home.

Call Tower Energy For Your Air Conditioning Requirements

Tower Energy LogoContact Tower Energy for all your superior HVAC service needs in Hartford County, Connecticut. We only hire the best professionally certified and highly trained technicians who offer excellent heating and cooling maintenance, replacements, installations, and repairs. Rest assured, all our skilled techs have the knowledge and experience needed for accurate and prompt HVAC services.

Our company guarantees affordable and competitive HVAC rates in the area. When you want to have improved comfort, indoor air quality, and energy efficiency, our maintenance services can help. We offer the best repair and replacement solutions that fit your budget as well. Your satisfaction is our priority, so all our work comes with a guarantee. Book an appointment with Tower Energy today for a free, in-home estimate.

Contact us now or call us at (860) 677-7347 to find out more.

couple experiencing a cold spot in their house

Everyone wants to live in a comfortable home. A very large part of the comfort that people know and expect comes from the ability to maintain even indoor temperatures. The temperature of any single room shouldn’t vary significantly from the rooms and spaces around it. When dealing with hot and cold spots in house, however, discomfort and unease ensue.

The good news is that central HVAC systems are capable of providing stable and balanced temperatures throughout all of the rooms in a building. When HVAC systems aren’t able to accomplish this, many people are eager to find out why and resolve the problem.

Does your home have unpleasant hot and cold spots? Following is a quick look at what hot and cold spots are, and the factors that are responsible for them. We’ll also share a few tips on regulating the temperature of your home.

What Causes Hot And Cold Spots In Your Home?

Several issues can be responsible for hot and cold spots. Understanding the cause of these problems can help you determine the underlying cause and the best ways to eliminate hot and cold spots. The following are a few common causes of indoor air balancing issues and their associated solutions.

The Layout And Construction Of Your Home

If the overall design for your home makes proper airflow difficult, certain areas will be more likely to have warm spots. Likewise, certain areas will be more prone to feeling cool. It might be that your home isn’t zoned, which can help quite a bit in keeping temperatures consistent and even throughout specific areas.

When you create zones, you get far better control over indoor temperatures. You can raise or lower temperatures in select zones independently, which is a very effective way to meet everyone’s comfort needs.

image of hvac ductwork

The Installation Of Your HVAC Ductwork

Ductwork plays a major factor in determining how well your home can be heated or cooled. There are two cases in which ductwork can be blamed for cold and hot spots throughout the building:

In each of these cases, homes are usually older, and thus, their ducts might not have the ability to meet the demands of new HVAC technologies. Also, they may not be energy-efficient.

Restricted Airflow Or HVAC Air Vents That Are Blocked

If you’re looking for ways to balance out the heat in your multi-story home, you certainly aren’t alone. Even if your home HVAC system is high-performing and highly efficient, you’ll still have uneven temperatures throughout the hours if the airflow is restricted or if any air vents have been blocked. Anything keeping warm or cool air from flowing smoothly will result in areas that feel cooler or warmer than they ought to.

image of an hvac air vent that is closed

Gains In Solar Heat

Although you might diligently and regularly maintain your home heating and cooling system, you can still have hot and cold spots throughout the building as the result of solar heat. Solar heat gain occurs in spaces that get ample amounts of sunlight. Homes that have old, low-efficiency windows or windows that are damaged tend to let considerable amounts of heat and light in. As a result, solar heat gain has an impact on the HVAC system’s ability to keep the space at a comfortable temperature.

The Thermostat Is Located In The Wrong Area

If you have a thermostat installed in an area that receives direct sunlight, the sun’s heat is going to affect this unit’s ability to read temperatures correctly. Due to this fact, the thermostat will adjust temperatures incorrectly. This is also true for thermostats that are installed in drafty areas or that are routinely exposed to heat from lamps or other heat sources.

image of a thermostat in a poor location

Issues With Air Leaks

Air leaks are known for causing hot and cold spots throughout buildings. Holes, cracks, gaps, and issues at ceilings and walls can let the indoor air outside, which can result in dramatic changes in room temperatures.

Improperly Sized HVAC Equipment

The sizing of your HVAC system refers to its ability to heat or cool your living space according to size. If an HVAC system is improperly sized for the environment, this means that it is too large or small to do its job. In either case, extreme inefficiency will result. Moreover, you will likely have problems with lower indoor air quality, short cycling, increased humidity, and uneven temperatures throughout the home.

How To Get Rid Of Hot And Cold Spots

The good news is that hot and cold spots aren’t an irreparable issue. More importantly, many remedies are both low in cost and easy to use. Following are several simple solutions that you can use.

Check To See Whether The Vents Are Blocked

Check air vents in all rooms throughout your home. Verify that there aren’t any obstructions over or in front of them. Solid items such as plants and furniture can impact the airflow and will keep cooled or warmed air from being properly distributed by the system. This is also the case when the vents are closed. Keep all of your HVAC vents open. Relocate, remove, or simply reposition items to ensure free airflow.

image of a person sealing the window and preventing air drafts

Check For Drafts

Homeowners wind up spending hundreds of extra dollars in energy each year as the result of drafts. Cracks, holes, and gaps throughout the home allow inside air to seep out, which wreaks havoc on the HVAC system. Look around for drafts in windows, doors, and joints, and then have these things repaired.

Consider Your Insulation

If you have outdated insulation or a fairly old home, think about scheduling an inspection to find out whether either of these factors is creating fluctuations in temperature. Certain types of insulation don’t last as long as their alternatives, which could be the reason why basement temperatures are different from temperatures on the first floor, or why your kitchen is cold and your living room isn’t.

Use Good Thermostats And Zoning

One very effective way to eliminate hot and cold spots is through zoning. This allows you to raise or lower temperatures in a specific area. This will allow everyone to enjoy an environment that balanced to suit individual needs. Speak with an HVAC company about your options in zoning. Make sure to ask about ductless, mini-split HVAC systems. You should additionally install a smart thermostat that can help automate adjustments in temperature.

Schedule Regular HVAC Maintenance

A lot of homeowners make the mistake of ignoring HVAC maintenance until their home heating and cooling equipment starts malfunctioning. Have your system inspected once each year to identify possible problems early on so that they can be resolved.

image of a furnace hvac filter replacement

Clean Your HVAC Air Filters

If your home feels much colder than the thermostat reading implies, or if there are warm spots in spaces that are supposed to be cool, then your HVAC system might not have enough airflow. One very common cause of insufficient airflow is a dirty, clogged filter. Check your filters once each month and then replace or clean them as necessary. Clean air filters will help regulate indoor temperatures and they’ll also limit the number of pollutants being circulated throughout your home.

Install Proper Window Coverings

The easiest and least expensive way to get rid of hot and cold spots is by using window treatments. Blinds and curtains help moderate the amount of sunlight that enters the living space. As such, your HVAC system won’t have to work harder than it’s meant to create and maintain a comfortable indoor environment.

Tower Energy Can Handle All Of Your HVAC Needs

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Eliminating hot and cold spots throughout your home does not have to be a frustrating and overly complex task. More often than not, the underlying cause of these issues isn’t as serious as many people believe. Just a few simple steps can be all that it takes to resolve this common problem. Maintaining a good indoor air balance, particularly when it comes to temperature, airflow, and direction, will ensure consistent temperatures and ongoing comfort for all residents.

Tower Energy has a long-standing reputation for providing superior HVAC services throughout the area. Our technicians are all NATE-certified and can offer truly remarkable HVAC installations, repairs, tune-ups, and full system replacements. Furthermore, our techs have ample knowledge and industry experience for meeting your HVAC needs perfectly. Our team is also able to identify the right home comfort solutions for your living environment.

When you hire Tower Energy, you can be sure that you’re in excellent hands. Our HVAC service costs are the most competitive in the region, and our work is always backed with a solid guarantee. When we provide you with one of our heating and cooling services, our top priorities are always helping our customers maintain high levels of energy efficiency, optimum indoor air qualities, and undeniable comfort. To schedule a home visit, call our office now and receive a free, in-home estimate.

Contact us now or call us at (860) 677-7347 to find out more.

image of an hvac contractor performing a furnace installation

The quality of the furnace installation is equally as important as the quality of the equipment that is installed. For this reason, HVAC experts will always advise homeowners to hire a professional when they need a furnace installation in their home. An improper furnace installation will impact the efficiency, performance, and safety of a unit. Hiring a professional is just a great approach to avoiding major furnace problems in the future. In the following article, we highlight the importance of proper furnace installation.

Why A Manual J Load Calculation Is Essential When Performing A Furnace Installation

The first step for furnace installation should always include a licensed HVAC technician and a Manual J Load Calculation. Your HVAC installer will use this to determine the capacity and size of the furnace needed.

What Is A Manual J Load Calculation?

A Manual J Load Calculation is used when calculating the heating and cooling capacities of an HVAC system. There are specific factors to this calculation that take into account many aspects of your home. These include measurements such as walls, square footage, and ceiling height. Insulation and the position of your home is also a factor.

The calculation will determine which HVAC system is right for your dwelling. The capacity is usually measured in tons and British Thermal Units (BTUs).

Each home is unique, and the calculation must take into account not only the structure and design but the materials used as well as the residents. A correctly sized and fitted HVAC unit should be capable of maintaining an even indoor temperature when providing heat.

If the system is not suitably sized for the residence, it will not work correctly. This could lead to inadequate heat supply and an overworked furnace. Even if you purchased a unit with a high-efficiency rating, your over or undersized unit will not run efficiently. The inefficiency of your heating system leads to higher fuel consumption, higher home heating costs, increased wear and tear, and premature replacement.

Until it reaches the end of its lifespan, the occupants will feel discomfort and experience poor indoor air quality as well. Therefore, correctly sizing your unit is paramount.

Safety Issues That Occur With An Improperly Installed Furnace

There are also many safety issues surrounding an improperly installed heating system. Below are some of the more serious problems that can occur when a furnace is not installed correctly:

Gas Leaks

Poorly connected systems can leave gaps in the joints, which could potentially cause a gas leak. Such a leak is a serious matter as it is combustible and extremely harmful to the health of both humans and animals.

Electrical Issues

Another serious problem with incorrectly installed units is faulty wiring. Not only can wiring problems drain power, but they can also increase the risk of fire in the home. Issues with the electrics can also decrease efficiency, meaning more expense for the bill payer.

Discomfort In The Home From Poorly Installed Heating Systems

Another issue that arises when an HVAC system is not correctly installed is discomfort for the occupants. When the unit is not functioning as needed, it can lead to the following problems:

Poor Indoor Air Quality

Your HVAC system can have an adverse effect on air quality when installed incorrectly. If the drain system that your HVAC system has is incorrectly set in place, then this can lead to a water leak and structural damage to your home. Also, the accumulation of moisture can result in the growth of mold and mildew, affecting the quality of the air that you breathe.

Air Distribution Problems

Faulty installation of a furnace can affect the duct system, leading to poor air distribution. This occurs when the capacity of the output does not equal the duct size. This issue leads to uneven temperature throughout the house. It will also increase the inefficiency of the entire system.

image of hvac air vent

Hot and Cold Spots In The Home

The problems created by poor air distribution are responsible for creating hot and cold spots in the home, which in turn will lead to discomfort for the occupants.

Issues With Venting Of The Furnace

Your HVAC system relies on being correctly vented. The wrong fitting size or material will create problems that become quickly evident. A furnace that has venting issues releases carbon monoxide, a fatal gas that is both odorless and colorless.

Choosing A Professional HVAC Contractor For Your Furnace Installation

To ensure a proper furnace installation, it is important to choose a licensed and experienced HVAC company. Choose a local heating company with a good reputation.
The HVAC company you choose should have the following qualifications:

HVAC Industry Certifications & NATE

NATE (North American Technician Excellence) certification is granted to technicians who have passed the core and specialty tests they provide. They are an independent body that utilizes a knowledge-based exam to certify the credentials of professionals working in the installation industry for heating and cooling systems. Always look for NATE certified technicians when choosing an HVAC installation company. NATE is a sign of competence in the HVAC industry.

Licensed And Bonded HVAC Contractors

Licensed technicians who are qualified to perform their jobs are knowledgeable and trained and will provide competent work once hired.
A bonded HVAC contractor provides a surety bond, which is a form of insurance that covers both the technician and the clients should the need arise.

HVAC Contractor Reviews

It is advisable that you request references from your potential HVAC installer. A reliable company will have no issue providing these and will have them readily available on request. Also, be sure to check their website. Many reputable HVAC companies enable customers to post reviews about the work the company has performed for them.

Conclusion

The proper installation of your home heating system is vitally important for the many reasons noted above. Not only will it ensure the safety and comfort of the household, but it will reduce unnecessary costs in the future.

Many companies offer heating services. Choose one that you can trust. A quality installation by a trained professional will ensure future comfort for your home and family. It will reduce the likelihood of needing a premature replacement or frequent repairs, which can be costly over time. Overall, don’t just choose a furnace make and model wisely. Choose your furnace installation company wisely too.

Call Tower Energy For All Of Your Heating Needs

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If you are looking for an excellent, highly recommended and qualified service for your home heating needs, Tower Energy is a company you can trust.

We offer superior heating and cooling services, including HVAC tune-ups, installations, and repairs. Our team of NATE certified technicians has the experience and knowledge necessary to meet all of your home heating needs.

We offer the most competitive prices for all of our HVAC services, including repairs and replacements. We always keep your budget in mind while prioritizing energy efficiency, comfort, indoor air quality, and more. All of our work is guaranteed.

For appointments or a free in-home estimate, call Tower Energy today.

Contact us now or call us at (860) 677-7347 to find out more.

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furnace maintenance

As the winter season draws near, temperatures throughout the nation are starting to plummet. This is an excellent time for homeowners to inspect their furnaces and to verify that these units are ready for the challenges of the cold weather. If you have any doubts about the working condition of your home furnace, you should call a trusted heating company to perform a tune-up and take care of all the necessary repairs. This is something that you should do now rather than later as it could be far more challenging to schedule HVAC services up during the heart of winter.

This is the time of year when homeowners tend to have the most questions. They want to know what type of furnace service they need. They may need help in finding a new furnace while considering all of the upfront and ongoing costs of this purchase. Seasoned HVAC professionals can provide needs-specific and truly comprehensive answers. To start, however, we’ll offer some general information by answering these common furnace FAQ:

Does My Home Furnace Really Have To Be Maintained?

The absolute answer to this question is YES! Furnace maintenance is nothing short of essential. Before most HVAC manufacturers will honor their warranties, they usually require proof of routine maintenance. These companies provide comprehensive instructions on caring for these units in their user manuals. You should always schedule an annual furnace tune-up to avoid costly repairs and sudden failure. Regular tune-ups for your furnace will ensure longevity, high levels of efficiency, and optimum safety.

When Should Furnace Repairs Be Scheduled?

As soon as you detect any furnace problem, you should schedule furnace repairs right away. Delaying will give these issues the chance to spiral out of control and could increase the related furnace repair costs. Problems are generally much faster, cheaper, and easier to deal with when they first rear their heads. Get in touch with a furnace repair company that has good ratings from other consumers in your area.

broken heating system

When Should I Replace My Furnace?

There isn’t really a set time frame for home furnace replacements given that each of these units can differ in terms of longevity and overall quality. Many furnaces can last more than a decade when they receive diligent maintenance. After approximately 10 years, however, it’s probably time to start preparing for this expense. You can avoid frequent breakdowns by replacing an outdated furnace.

What Are Some Signs That A Furnace Replacement Is Needed?

You may want to upgrade your home heating system if you start experiencing pilot light failure, insufficient heat, strange odors, increased corrosion, delayed ignition, and other symptoms of furnace failure. Decreasing efficiency is also a sign that your furnace needs a replacement. This will reveal itself as a noticeable increase in home energy use and higher energy bills.

How Often Should Furnace Filters Be Replaced?

HVAC air filters keep dirt, dust, and other elements from entering this equipment, and to protect the quality of the indoor air. The filter surface, however, can eventually become clogged with collected particulates. You should perform filter replacements for your home furnace as per the recommendations in your owner’s manual. Check the filter monthly and replace it as needed.

Which Furnace Type Is Best?

The best furnace to invest in is the one that is best-suited to the unique needs and layout of your home. It should boast the perfect heating capacity for effectively warming the entire building interior. A good furnace will also have an acceptable high AFUE rating. Most furnaces in the US have ratings of 80 percent and above.

What Are Some Ways I Can Reduce My Energy Bill?

One of the biggest expenses for nearly every household is the home heating bill. Lower your energy costs by regularly performing maintenance on your heating system. This will improve the overall efficiency of your heating equipment so that it consumes less fuel during the winter. You can also cut your spending by setting the thermostat to a more moderate temperature.

high heating bills

How Can I Determine The Right Furnace Capacity Or Size For My Home?

Multiple factors help determine the proper furnace size for any home, including the building’s ceiling height, total floor space, orientation, insulation, natural shade, and local climate. A seasoned HVAC professional can perform a Manual J load calculation to arrive at an accurate figure.

What’s The Anticipated Lifespan Of My New Furnace?

The lifespan of a furnace can vary from one home to the next. When their units receive proper maintenance and care, homeowners can expect their newly installed heating equipment to last two decades or more. Your furnace should also be the proper size for your home. If you aren’t sure about this, ask an HVAC contractor for sizing estimates.

What Is The AFUE Rating For A Furnace?

The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency ration or AFUE rating is a measurement of the unit’s heat production concerning the amount of fuel that it consumes. What’s a decent AFUE rating? You want this to be 80 percent or higher, or preferably 90 percent or higher. Check your user manual to learn how to find the AFUE rating. The unit’s faceplate displays its efficiency rating.

Conclusion

People can rely on their home furnaces for comfort and warmth throughout many winter seasons. The lifespan of this essential equipment can even extend beyond two decades, but only when homeowners are diligent in performing heater maintenance. You should monitor and change air filters as needed. Homeowners should also schedule professional tune-ups each year. These can include comprehensive cleaning and inspections. All minor furnace repairs should be performed right away.

For households with older furnaces, it may be time to consider having these units replaced. Increasing fuel consumption, regular breakdowns, and advancing age are all reasons to invest in new heating equipment. Just be sure to choose the right size furnace for your home. To determine the needed heating capacity, have Manual J load calculations performed by trusted heating professionals. High-efficiency units are ideal.

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Get Connected With Tower Energy For Your Home Heating Needs

Tower Energy provides reliable services in home heating and cooling throughout the region. We are staffed by top-rated NATE-certified professionals who are adept in providing HVAC replacements, repairs, installations, tune-up services, and more. They have the knowledge and the work history for providing proper HVAC system solutions.

Does your home heating system need to be replaced, or does it require repairs? No matter what the case may be, there is no need to worry. You’re in very capable hands with Tower Energy. We offer the most competitive local prices on furnace replacements and repairs. If your system does need a replacement, we will help you find the perfect model for your budget and your home. As ever, our top priorities continue to be comfort, efficiency, indoor air quality, among other things. Call Tower Energy now to set up your free, in-home consultation.

Contact us now or call us at (860) 677-7347 to find out more.