Should I Replace an Old AC with a Heat Pump?

October 15th, 2014

Replacing an aging air conditioner can be a great opportunity. Why? Not only will you benefit from greater energy efficiency and better reliability, you can also install a new kind of system that may benefit your home more than your current setup. One option for your new air conditioning installation in West Palm Beach is a heat pump. The name “heat pump” may be confusing, but be assured that a heat pump can offer your home great cooling in addition to great heating. While the operation of a heat pump is quite simple, the device itself is complex, and calls for professional installation. Envirotech Air Quality Services has been helping with air conditioning installation, repair and maintenance since 1987, so if you are in need of a new AC system, call us today.

Benefits of a Heat Pump

One of the best ways to assess whether or not you should replace your aging air conditioner with a heat pump is to review the benefits a heat pump can offer you:

  • Both heats and cools – thanks to a component called a reversing valve, a heat pump can provide your home with both warm and cool air. This means if you have been using separate systems, you can pare down your whole-home systems to one manageable device.
  • Better energy efficiency – a heat pump does not use any fossil fuels and only needs a small amount of electricity to operate – about 25% of that of an air conditioning unit. This can save you money on energy costs, particularly if you have a combustion heating system.
  • Better humidity control – because heat pumps operate on a low, continuous cycle instead of blowing forced air, the moisture control can be up to 30% better than with a traditional air conditioning system.

If you are looking for your air conditioning installation in West Palm Beach to provide great year-round comfort and better energy efficiency, a heat pump may be just what you need. Call Envirotech Air Quality Services today and schedule an appointment with one of our trained installation experts.

Is a Heat Pump Worth It Just for Air Conditioning?

October 8th, 2014

To understand how a heat pump works means understanding how an air conditioner works: essentially, the two are identical, except that the heat pump has extra components and the construction to allow it to reverse the direction that it operates, so instead of removing heat from indoors and depositing it outdoors (standard air conditioning) it can also remove heat from outdoors and release it indoors, working as a forced-air heater.

If you are planning to replace the air conditioning system in your home, a heat pump is a good option to investigate. However, are you planning to replace both the air conditioner and the heater? If you only need to have the AC replaced, you may wish to reconsider installing a heat pump. Or you might be best served by deciding to have the heater replaced as well as the air conditioner, and use a heat pump in place of both.

Whatever your best choice for air conditioning in Lake Worth, FL, you will find the experts to help you make the best decision at Envirotech Air Quality Services. We offer a wide variety of systems, and you can trust in our experience to find the finest installation for your home comfort.

The Best Use for a Heat Pump

There is no question that a heat pump can provide the level of cooling power to match the best air conditioners of comparable size. If you are worried that the split function of a heat pump means it will suffer reduced cooling power, put your mind at ease: heat pumps have enormous cooling capacity and will work as well as any air conditioner of around the same size.

However, you don’t want a heat pump to handle only the cooling side. Doing this squanders a terrific opportunity to save money. Heat pumps are generally more expensive than standard air conditioners, so if you install one just to take care of air conditioning, you are probably better served with a cooling-only system. This isn’t just a question of price, but also of potential. Heat pumps are extremely effective heating systems for warmer climates such as those in Florida. A heat pump consumes much less energy than a gas-powered heater or an electric resistance heater while it runs, and this can save you a few hundred dollars each year off of your heating bill. It’s wasteful to let this great opportunity go past because you only plan to use the heat pump for cooling.

Find Out If a Heat Pump is Right for You

So you’ve decided that if you install a heat pump, you’ll install it as a replacement for both the heating and air conditioning systems in your home. Now what? Well, you will have to call professional HVAC technicians to handle figuring out if a heat pump is the best choice for your heating and air conditioning in Lake Worth, FL. Once they’ve determined this, they will install the system so that it gives you many years of great performance.

Envirotech Air Quality Services provides heating and air conditioning that keeps our customers satisfied. Call us today for any heating or AC installation you need.

Moisture Control and Mold Remediation

October 1st, 2014

Nobody wants to find out that there is mold developing inside the ventilation system of their homes. Unfortunately, this is a common problem in Florida because of our high humidity. The combination of elevated moisture levels and the dark confines of ductwork makes ventilation systems an ideal place for mold to grow. Mold can reach many other areas of a house given high enough humidity, growing under floorboards, above ceiling tiles, and within drywall.

Mold presents a danger to both building material and the health of those inside a house. Some molds release toxic spores that trigger a number of symptoms in people who breathe them, and they pose a special hazard to sufferers of asthma and allergies. You need to have professional remediation services to eliminate mold when it starts to infiltrate your home’s ventilation system and building material. Envirotech Air Quality Services performs quality mold remediation in Wellington, FL and the surrounding areas; we specialize in protecting your indoor air quality and removing dangerous and damaging molds.

Moisture Control as a Means to Combat Mold

There is a variety of ways that specialists eliminate mold from a home, but one of the most important steps in mold remediation is to stop the mold from returning. It doesn’t do much good to get rid of a mold infestation in the floorboards of a home only to have the mold return a few weeks later. To help keep mold away, specialists will control the moisture in the affected area. Once the excess water in the building material removed, it will be unlikely for the mold to return.

When mold remediation specialists come to your home, they will first perform mold assessment to find out how serious a problem you have. Mold growth often lies in hidden spaces, so if you’ve spotted mold growing in a few locations, the chances are high that it has also spread to many others that you can’t see. The remediation technicians will locate all the spots they need to address, and also track down the source of the high humidity that allowed the growths to occur in the first place.

Once the technicians have performed the necessary mold remediation, they will start the moisture control process. Blowers and dehumidifiers dry out the previously affected areas and extract as much moisture as possible from them so the mold will have a difficult time returning.

Remember that it isn’t enough just to remove the mold: mold remediation in Wellington, FL requires more commitment to eliminating the reasons the mold started to develop in the first place. When you call on Envirotech Air Quality Services to get rid of the mold in your home, you can trust that we will do a thorough job that will leave your house mold-free for many years. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment with us.

Parts of an AC That Will Decline without Regular Maintenance

September 24th, 2014

Your air conditioner is most likely one of the largest and most costly appliances in your home, so most people would not want replace it before its expected lifespan is through. But if you don’t schedule regular air conditioning maintenance, parts of your air conditioner may decline, possibly leading to major repairs, or worse, sudden failure. During air conditioning maintenance, a technician will clean and inspect your entire system, make a few minor adjustments, and keep you updated about potential problems with your system. Without this valuable service, some of the following vital components may begin to decline.

  • Coils: There are two important coils inside of your air conditioner that help refrigerant to absorb and release heat. The evaporator coil, located in the indoor portion of your AC, helps refrigerant to turn into a gas and absorb heat from your home while the outdoor condenser coil allows it to release heat and condense into a liquid. Because a fan blows air over each of these coils, they may easily become covered with dirt and debris, impairing their ability to function and keeping your air conditioner from cooling as thoroughly as it should.
  • Electrical Connections: One of the most common reasons for AC failure is electrical problems. During maintenance, a technician checks and tightens electrical connections and tests for the proper voltage. This prevents damage to the compressor and keeps your air conditioner from short cycling or failing without warning.
  • Compressor: There are many parts which may wear down the compressor if left in a state of disrepair. For example, your compressor may become overworked if there is low refrigerant because it is sized to handle a certain load according to the cooling capacity of your unit. Alternatively, a faulty thermostat may contribute to excessive wear on your compressor, and may even lead to unexpected breakdowns.

Air conditioning maintenance keeps these parts of your AC and more in top shape. This could lower your bills and keep you from being hit with unexpected repair bills when you need your AC the most. For air conditioning maintenance in West Palm Beach, FL, call our dedicated team of experts at Envirotech Air Quality Services today.

Repairs an AC May Need During the Fall

September 17th, 2014

After a busy summer of full-time work, it isn’t unusual to need air conditioning repair in Lake Worth, FL. There are some components that may be more affected by normal wear-and-tear than others, something our Envirotech Air Quality Services technicians are used to seeing during the fall season. If you suspect your AC may need some work, don’t wait for a total breakdown – call us today.

Common Fall Repairs

Here are some common fall repair needs our technicians see:

Fan Problems

There are two fans in your air conditioner: the evaporator fan, also known as the blower, and the outdoor fan, known as the condenser fan. The most common problems that occur with fans are bent or loose fan blades, worn out or broken fan belts, issues with the fan motors, and wiring problems. The fans in your system help with air flow and the cooling process, so when there’s a problem with your fans, it can affect your entire system.

Refrigerant Leaks

Refrigerant leaks can develop in a number of places and cause your air conditioner to ice up or blow warm air. Your AC may run with a refrigerant leak, but this is not advisable: your air conditioner was made to run with an exact level of refrigerant. Operating the system without the proper amount of refrigerant can cause problems that may become serious.

Compressor Problems

The compressor pressurizes the refrigerant in your system; as such, it operates under a great deal of pressure. Common problems with the compressor usually involve issues with the motor, problems with wiring, and broken or bad capacitors. Your compressor is a complex component, and should always be handled by a trained and certified professional.

Your air conditioning in Lake Worth, FL has been working non-stop for several months; if a problem has developed, it’s important to have it repaired quickly as it is more likely to get worse than better. Since 1987, Envirotech Air Quality Services has helped customers with all of their air conditioning needs and we can help you, too. If you are seeing the signs of problems, call us today.

Is It Still Worthwhile to Schedule Air Conditioning Maintenance in the Fall?

September 10th, 2014

The cooler season of fall may be a few weeks away, but it will come, and we will finally be able to turn down, or even turn off, our air conditioning in Florida. Not only does the fall give your AC a break, it also provides a great opportunity to schedule maintenance. In fact, the two best seasons to schedule air conditioning maintenance in Wellington are spring and fall. If we haven’t seen you for maintenance yet this year, call Envirotech Air Quality Services and schedule an appointment with one of our experts.

Benefits of Scheduling Fall Maintenance

Maintenance is important for several reasons:

  • Prevents repairs – during a routine maintenance visit, your air conditioning system is thoroughly inspected. This allows for two things: first, small problems, like lack of lubrication or a worn fan belt, are found and fixed. Second, bigger problems, like refrigerant leaks, are detected. This can save you both time and money in the long run.
  • Maintains and/or increases energy efficiency – Energy.gov estimates that for every year your AC is not maintained, it loses 5% of its energy efficiency. Conversely, when you schedule yearly maintenance, you retain 95% of your AC’s original efficiency.
  • Keeps your AC clean – cleaning is a part of a routine maintenance appointment. The coils are cleaned, debris is removed and dirty air filters are changed.
  • Extends life of equipment – when your air conditioner runs under stress for a long period of time due to malfunctioning parts, premature aging can occur. Regular maintenance keeps your AC in good working order, which can help extend the life of the equipment.

What Happens During a Routine Maintenance Appointment?

Here is a general overview of what happens during a typical maintenance appointment:

  • Check of the thermostat
  • Check of electrical components
  • Lubrication of moving parts
  • Inspect the condensate array
  • Check system cycling
  • Inspect and clean evaporator and condenser coils
  • Check and adjust the refrigerant level of your central air conditioner
  • Check all fans

Scheduling air conditioning maintenance for your Wellington property can increase your energy efficiency and help your AC to run optimally. Fall is a great time to schedule an appointment, so call Envirotech Air Quality Services today.

The Fashion of Wearing White and Labor Day

September 1st, 2014

You may have heard about the fashion faux pas of wearing white after Labor Day. In the present, this tradition is usually treated as old fashioned and a joke. Few people will criticize you for wearing white articles of clothing after the first Monday in September, or even take notice of it except to wonder why it was ever a major concern at all.

Where did this tradition of white clothing going out of fashion after Labor Day come from, and why did it fade away like colorful fabric washed in a hot load in the washing machine?

In general, white makes sense for the heat of summer. Light-colored clothing reflects away the radiant heat of the sun, instead of absorbing it the way dark colors do, so for thousands of years of human history people have preferred to wear white clothing during the hotter months.

However, the idea of white as strictly fashionable during the summer season only emerged in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries—the time when the very concept of “fashion” began to spread across the Western Hemisphere.

It was only the highest level of post-Civil War society in the U.S. that strict and often bizarre rules for fashion controlled whether someone was in with the “in” crowd. Compared to our ideas of what’s fashionable today, the Czars of Style in the 1880s were true despots. Things as trivial as sleeve length could determine whether a woman in high society—no matter her level of wealth—was fashionable or a pariah.

Wearing white during the only summer, when it was common for weddings and outdoor parties, was only of these restrictive society rules. When the U.S. government made Labor Day a federal holiday in 1894, the Fashion Czars gained a definite cut-off point for when wearing white was no longer “acceptable” in the upper echelons of wealthy society.

For many decades, this rule only applied to a small number of millionaire socialites in a few big cities, but in the 1950s it reached general fashion magazines that were read around the country and started to affect more people.

But time eventually broke apart this odd rule, and during the 1970s fashion became more individual. Some fashion legends, like Coco Chanel, also purposely rejected the restriction and wore white throughout the year. Today, the “no white after Labor Day rule” is little more than an amusing gag to tease friends, and almost nobody takes it seriously.

Whatever you choose to wear after Labor Day (and if it’s white, we won’t tease!), everyone here at Envirotech Air Quality Services hopes you have a happy end of the summer and great plans for the fall!

Infrared Diagnostic Imaging and Mold Removal

August 27th, 2014

As many people know, having mold growth in your home can be a serious issue. However, finding the mold can be akin to a scavenger hunt as you try to find the areas of your home in which the mold is growing. Mold thrives in moist, cool, dark places, so it can be hard to detect exactly where it may be, and the places may be difficult to reach, like the inside of your ductwork. A great tool that can help detect potential mold growth is infrared diagnostic imaging. But not just anyone can use infrared light; it takes trained personnel to calibrate and read the results of the imaging. Envirotech Air Quality Services has the trained experts who can help you with mold problems using infrared technology.

How Does Infrared Imaging Help?

Infrared imaging, also known as thermal imaging, creates a picture or pictures from the infrared radiation of things, objects and living beings. This radiation is created by the heat energy of the object; the higher the temperature of the object, the brighter the color of its imaging. The image collects the infrared radiation from objects in front of it and creates an electronic image based on information about the temperature differences. The colors range from dark purples and blues, which indicate low temperatures, to bright reds and yellows, which indicate higher ones.

Trained technicians use infrared imaging to detect air leaks and pockets of moisture that aren’t readily visible to the naked eye. Infrared allows this detection without opening walls or ceiling, or pulling up carpets and floorboards. The technology is very precise and can map hard-to-reach places.

Once specific areas are noted to have excess moisture, they can be tested for mold growth. The infrared helps pinpoint locations that may have gone unnoticed without the help of the imaging.

Infrared diagnostic imaging can be an important tool to help with the removal of mold in your home. Mold side effects can range from uncomfortable to dangerous, so it’s imperative to completely rid your home of all mold growth. If mold growth has become an issue in your home, schedule an infrared diagnostic imaging appointment to help with your mold removal in West Palm Beach, FL. Envirotech Air Quality Services has the trained experts you need – call us today!

How Can I Save Money with Air Conditioning Maintenance in Wellington?

August 20th, 2014

An effective air conditioning system is a must for living in Florida. Unlike many other states, Florida can experience hot weather throughout the year, and air conditioners will often work through the winter months in addition to the heavy strain of the summer. You have to take good care of your AC to make sure that all this stress doesn’t end up causing it to break down and require an early replacement.

Air conditioners need regular maintenance each year to keep away repair problems. But maintenance isn’t just for preventing malfunctions and breakdowns: it will help you save money. Considering how much you will need to keep your air conditioner running during the year, you can save a significant amount from your cooling bills with AC maintenance. We’ll explain how.

To schedule air conditioning maintenance in Wellington, FL, call Envirotech Air Quality Services. We offer preventive maintenance programs that will service both your air conditioner and your heater.

The Money-Saving Benefits of Air Conditioning Maintenance

Studies of AC operation have shown that if a system receives maintenance every year, it will retain 95% of its energy efficiency performance over its lifetime. However, each year that it goes without maintenance will see on average a 5% drop in efficiency. If you have a high-efficiency air conditioner with 20 SEER, it will only take four to five years without maintenance for it to drop down to 15 SEER, which is close to dropping below the ENERGY STAR minimum requirement for ACs. You can expect to see utility bills start to mount every year.

What maintenance does to protect and air conditioner’s efficiency is to tune-up the systems so that age can’t get a grip on the components. Technicians clean the evaporator and condenser coils so they effectively remove and release heat, clean the lubricate the motors so they don’t overwork, check on the motor draw for optimum performance, change out the air filters, look for air leaks, and tighten electrical connections. This will result in an AC that runs with as few impediments to performance as possible, and therefore without draining extra energy.

There’s another way that maintenance will save you money: fewer repairs, and a reduced likelihood that you will need to replace the system early. An air conditioner kept in the best shape should meet or exceed its manufacturer’s estimated lifespan. One that goes without maintenance might not even make it halfway—and replacing an AC is the most expensive “repair” of all.

Sign up today for air conditioning maintenance in Wellington, FL with Envirotech Air Quality Services. Our program not only provides you with quality AC and heating maintenance, but also a 10% discount on repair parts. Should you need repairs, our skilled staff is ready 24/7 to assist you. Call us today to set up an appointment.

West Palm Beach Air Conditioning Repair Question: Is It My Compressor?

August 13th, 2014

The compressor is one of the most important components of your AC system. As refrigerant travels through your air conditioner, it must go through several phase transitions in order to remove heat from the home. As it enters the compressor, refrigerant is compressed into a high-pressure gas so that it can condense into a liquid at the condenser coil and release heat into the air. While the compressor is built to last, strain on your system, low refrigerant, a damaged part, or exposure to the elements may cause it to malfunction.

The following list includes a few of the problems that may indicate compressor damage. However, it’s important to note that any of these problems may also result from another source. Compressor damage is not a problem you should try to handle on your own. If you notice any of these issues, call a professional for air conditioning repair in West Palm Beach.

  • Hard Starting: If your air conditioner has trouble turning on and shuts off sooner than it should (commonly referred to as “hard starting”) it’s often a sign of compressor damage.
  • Compressor Will Not Turn On: When the unit will not turn on at all, the compressor may have overheated. However, this can also indicate thermostat problems or electrical issues.
  • Reduced Cooling: Reduced cooling can be a sign of wear and tear on the compressor. However, it may also mean the refrigerant is low, a coil is blocked, or it can be one of several other common problems that interfere with heat exchange.

Regular maintenance is the best way to prevent the need for air conditioning repair. During maintenance, a technician checks for problems like low refrigerant, which can seriously damage the compressor. Furthermore, you should call a technician at the first sign of trouble, as a broken part may damage other components of your system. The compressor works especially hard to compensate for damaged components, so it’s important to schedule repairs quickly.

If you attempt repairs without a qualified technician, you may cause permanent damage to the system. When you need air conditioning repair in West Palm Beach, call the experts at Envirotech Air Quality Services. We offer 24 hour emergency service so we can get your system in working condition as soon as possible.