Good to know

There is a wide array of equipment that pertain to home HVAC systems. In almost every case, the full system is made up of a matched set of individual HVAC components, to provide the best comfort solution to you. While choosing and installing a home HVAC system is not out of the realm of what a handyman can do, it is always recommended that you consult with a local contractor before you ever decide to do it yourself.

Residential HVAC systems

Split System Furnace with Air

Split System Heat Pump and Air

Split Hybrid System, Furnace and Heat Pump

Packaged HVAC units

Gas Packaged Units - Gas Packs

Heat Pump Packaged Units

HVAC accessories or alternatives

Whole House Air Cleaners

Programmable Wifi Thermostats

Whole House Humidifiers

Gas Fireplace Logs

Portable Air Conditioners

Change filters

The most important maintenance task that will ensure the efficiency of your air conditioner is to routinely replace or clean its filters. Clogged, dirty filters block normal airflow and reduce a system's efficiency significantly. With normal airflow obstructed, air that bypasses the filter may carry dirt directly into the evaporator coil and impair the coil's heat-absorbing capacity. Replacing a dirty, clogged filter with a clean one can lower your air conditioner's energy consumption by 5% to 15%.

Keep coils clean

The air conditioner's evaporator coil and condenser coil collect dirt over their months and years of service. A clean filter prevents the evaporator coil from soiling quickly. In time, however, the evaporator coil will still collect dirt. This dirt reduces airflow and insulates the coil, reducing its ability to absorb heat. To avoid this problem, check your evaporator coil every year and clean it as necessary.

Always hire professionals

When your air conditioner needs more than regular maintenance, hire a professional service technician. A well-trained technician will find and fix problems in your air conditioning system.

Checkmarks before calling ACCaptain

  • Check for correct amount of refrigerant
  • Test for refrigerant leaks using a leak detector
  • Capture any refrigerant that must be evacuated from the system, instead of illegally releasing it to the atmosphere
  • Check for and seal duct leakage in central systems
  • Measure airflow through the evaporator coil
  • Verify the correct electric control sequence and make sure that the heating system and cooling system cannot operate simultaneously

Be prepared before busy season

In the winter, either cover your room air conditioner or remove and store it. Covering the outdoor unit of a central air conditioner will protect the unit from winter weather and debris.

Reduce your bills

  • Replace filters every one to two months during the cooling season. You can lower energy use by 5%-15% by replacing a dirty, clogged filter with a clean one.
  • Check the evaporator coil every year and clean it as needed.
  • Clean the area around outdoor condenser coils by removing debris and trimming foliage so there are at least two feet around the condenser for airflow. Also be aware of debris build up from dryer vents, falling leaves, and trimming and mowing the lawn; clean away this debris as needed throughout the cooling season.

hire a right contractor

  • Hire a state-licensed contractor and verify that your contractor is in good standing.
  • Make sure your contractor obtains a building permit from your local building department.
  • Beware of any contractor that offers a lower price to install a unit without a permit; having a permit ensures work will be inspected.
  • Make sure your contract includes a 3-day right to cancel clause.
  • Verify that your contractor has workers' compensation (WC) and general liability insurance.
  • Insist on a written, fix-priced contract and don't sign anything until you completely understand the terms.
  • Do not make payments ahead of the work. Keep a record of all payments. Do not make final payment before the final inspection has been conducted, the permit completed by the building department, and you are satisfied with the work.
  • Keep a file of all documents and photos related to your project.

Before calling ACCaptain

Check Thermostat

Check power and breakers

Check filters