South West Florida (Lee, Collier & Charlotte): 239-567-9661

The Importance of Keeping Your Coils Clean

Air Conditioner Coil Cleaning in Cape Coral & Port Charlotte, FLThe air conditioning coils are one of the most critical components of your air conditioning system. These AC coils are very delicate, and they need to be properly handled to preserve their cooling power. With regular maintenance, well-preserved AC coils will help keep indoor air quality higher and utility bills lower.

Understanding Your Air Conditioner’s Coils

Your air conditioning system has two sets of coils – evaporator coils and condenser coils.

The evaporator coils are located on the indoor portion of your AC system. They are responsible for absorbing heat from your home’s air and transferring it to the refrigerant that carries it out of your home.

The condenser coils are located in the outdoor portion of your air conditioning system. They are responsible for transferring heat from the refrigerant to the air outside your home or building.

Over time, both your evaporator coils and your condenser coils can suffer from dirt buildup, which can have a big impact on the performance and efficiency of your air conditioner. With dirt buildup on the coils, it is harder for the system to transfer and absorb heat. So your air conditioner will have to work harder, and it will have to run more often, which means it will use a lot more energy to keep your home cool.

Cleaning Air Conditioner Coils

Here’s what you should know about air conditioner coil cleaning. Much of your air conditioner’s coils are tucked away inside the system, making it difficult to effectively clean them on your own. Also, the coil fins are delicate and extremely sensitive. Improper handling could potentially lead to a very costly repair. That’s why it’s best to have a professional air conditioning company do the job. At ASAP Heating and Cooling, we’ll give you a free estimate for your system.

Two primary benefits of a proper AC coil cleaning are an increased system efficiency and cooling power, plus improved indoor air quality. This maintenance should be done annually, before summer.

Call the experts at ASAP Heating and Cooling for more information or to schedule an appointment for coil cleaning. ASAP Heating and Cooling provides quality heating and cooling services to homes and businesses in Port Charlotte, Cape Coral, Naples, Southwest Florida and surrounding service areas.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


5 Ways to Help Maintain Your AC

Air Conditioner Maintenance in Cape Coral & Port Charlotte, FLDid you know that you can reduce your HVAC system use by as much as ten percent by raising or lowering your thermostat? In the summer months, the U.S. Department of Energy recommends keeping your home’s temperature at 78 degrees.

Another good way to keep your HVAC usage in check is to maintain the system. A well maintained AC unit will run more efficiently, use less energy and cost less money to run. A properly maintained system will also last longer before needing to be replaced.

Your air conditioner’s filters, coils and fins require regular maintenance to keep your AC unit functioning effectively and efficiently throughout its years of service. If you neglect necessary maintenance, you will have a steady decline in air conditioning performance – and your energy usage will steadily increase.

Here are 5 ways to help maintain your air conditioner.

1. Replace or Clean the Filter Once a Month

This is your most important maintenance task to ensure the efficiency of your AC unit. Clogged or dirty filters will block normal airflow and reduce the efficiency of your air conditioner, and it can hinder the air quality in your home. A dirty filter will make your AC unit work harder than it should have to. Airflow through the system will become dustier, and it can trigger allergy and asthma symptoms. Replacing a dirty or clogged filter with a clean filter can lower your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5 to 15 percent.

2. Keep the Coils Clean

Over time, your air conditioner’s coils can become dirty, which reduces the amount of heat they can absorb. That means your AC system has to work harder to keep your home cool. It is important to keep the coils clean to avoid placing any unnecessary strain on your AC system. Start by keeping the area around the condenser unit outside your home clear of any debris. Cut back any shrubs or plants that may be impeding air flow. Wash the unit and clean it with a brush. Do not use a power washer and be careful not the bend or damage the fins on the coil.

3. Regularly Check the Fins

Both the condenser and the evaporator have fins, which can bend over time causing insufficient airflow. Check the fins regularly to make sure they haven’t bent. If the fins have bent, you can use a fin comb or call your professional air conditioning company for help.

4. Inspect the Condensate Drain

The condensate drain allows the condensation created within the AC system to drain outdoors. Over time, the condensate drain can become clogged. If you check your condensate drain and notice that water isn’t draining properly, unclog the obstruction or call your professional air conditioning company for assistance.

5. Schedule Professional Maintenance

To keep your air conditioning system running in top condition, schedule a professional maintenance appointment. During that maintenance appointment, your entire air conditioning system will be cleaned, inspected and tuned to ensure that it is functioning at optimal levels. Regular maintenance appointments are a great way to protect your investment and to keep your AC unit working its best.

Call the experts at ASAP Heating and Cooling for more information or to schedule a professional maintenance appointment. ASAP Heating and Cooling provides quality heating and cooling services to homes and businesses in Port Charlotte, Cape Coral, Naples, Southwest Florida and surrounding service areas.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


Tips for Keeping Your Home Fresh

Duct Cleaning in Cape Coral & Port Charlotte, FLIt’s important to keep your home fresh and clean. But have you thought about cleaning your air? If your air conditioning system is not properly maintained, it could affect the air quality inside your home. This could lead to a variety of health conditions, including respiratory conditions like allergies or asthma.

It’s important to keep dirt, dust and mold out of your home, and properly maintaining your air conditioning system will help you to do just that. It is recommended that you have your air conditioning system cleaned once a year to help reduce health problems and to help keep your home fresh and clean.

Remember, by taking the proper steps to maintain your air conditioning system you are protecting yourself and your family from air contamination that is caused by a dirty air conditioning unit. Here are some steps you should take to ensure that the air inside your home is fresh and clean.

Changing Your AC Filter

Your air conditioner’s filter keeps out dust, pollen, spores and other airborne problems that can lead to health issues. Changing the filter on a regular basis is important because a dirty filter causes less airflow, which makes your system work harder and costs you more money in energy bills. A dirty filter can also cause your air conditioning unit to overheat, or lead to other permanent damage. As a rule, you should replace or clean your air conditioner filter once a month.

Keeping Your Vents Clean

It is impossible to get all the areas of your house clean and free of allergens and microbes that can cause illness. That’s why it’s a good idea to clean your ducts. Dust mites, pollen and other allergens hide within the air ducts of your heating and cooling system, and it’s important to eliminate these impurities from your home.

ASAP Heating and Cooling will clean your air ducts using a specialized portable vacuum system and a special brush that removes any materials within the duct walls. Remember, cleaning your ducts will help keep your home free from allergy-causing particles.

Removing Humidity from Your Home

Excess moisture in your home can lead to damage, and it can encourage harmful mold and mildew growth, which can cause health problems for you and your family.

The ideal relative humidity for your home should be somewhere between 30 and 50 percent. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you keep humidity levels no higher than 50 percent all day long. If humidity levels rise above or fall below that range, you may begin to experience issues like mold growth.

Modulating systems remove more moisture from the air, preventing mold growth. While a fixed speed HVAC system can only run at full speed, a modulating system can have two or more speeds. A fixed speed AC system allows relative humidity to go as high as 60 percent, while modulating systems do not break 50 percent. So a modulating HVAC system prevents harmful mold growth by removing moisture from the air.

Call the experts at ASAP Heating and Cooling for more information or to schedule an appointment. ASAP Heating and Cooling provides quality heating and cooling services to homes and businesses in Port Charlotte, Cape Coral, Naples, Southwest Florida and surrounding service areas.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


How Do You Reduce Pollen in Your Home?

Duct Cleaning in Cape Coral & Port Charlotte, FLWhen pollen counts rise, your allergies go into overdrive. Protecting your home from allergens is not an easy task, but there are some things you can do to help reduce the pollen count inside your home.

Control Allergens Inside the Home

First of all, cut down on the clutter. The less stuff you have in your home, the fewer places allergens can hide. Limit the number of knickknacks, magazines, newspapers and other dust catchers in your home. Make sure to dust often, and to dust those hard to reach areas, like ceiling fans.

Fabrics and carpets are also dust collectors. If you have allergies, your best bet is wood or tile flooring, not wall-to-wall carpets. Use a damp mop regularly to keeps floors clean. If you must have carpeting, choose a short, tight pile and make sure to vacuum weekly. A vacuum with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter is recommended. If you have a bagless vacuum cleaner, make sure to empty it outdoors, not in the house.

Control Allergens from Outside the Home

If you’re concerned about pollen, make smart decisions for your landscaping. Choose low-allergy trees like dogwood, cherry and magnolia. Female ash and maple trees are also considered low-allergy, but make sure to buy them from a reliable source to make sure of the tree’s gender. If you like flowers, choose low-allergy flowers like impatiens, columbine and viola.

Keep your windows closed in the early morning hours and between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. when pollen counts are highest. Also, keep your windows closed when it is windy outside.

If you have a car, keep it in the garage or give it a quick rinse whenever you can. Pollen settles on your car, and every time you touch your car, you will be spreading that pollen to your hands or clothing.

When you’re coming in from outdoors, be careful to bring in as little pollen as possible. Make sure to thoroughly wipe your feet on the mat and take off your shoes as soon as you enter the house. Pollen can also attach itself to your clothing, so remove your outer garments in the mudroom and take a shower. Your hair is also a magnet for pollen, so make sure to wash it before you go to bed, or wear a hat or scarf when you go outside and remove it as soon as you enter the house.

Remember that your pets can also bring pollen into the house. Make sure to brush your pets and wipe their paws before bringing them into the house.

Keep Air Ducts Clean

Make sure that your home is well ventilated and that the ductwork doesn’t leak. It is also a good idea to clean your ducts. Dust mites, pollen and other allergens hide within the air ducts of your heating and cooling system, and it’s important to eliminate these impurities from your home or place of business.

Use a HEPA filter in your air conditioning unit and keep it clean. Replace the filter once a month. Keep the humidity level inside your house at no more than 50 percent.

Call the experts at ASAP Heating and Cooling for more information or to schedule an appointment for duct cleaning. ASAP Heating and Cooling provides quality heating and cooling services to homes and businesses in Port Charlotte, Cape Coral, Naples, Southwest Florida and surrounding service areas.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


What are the Benefits of a Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat?

 

In today’s world, everything that we do and use is moving to “smart technology,” through the use of apps on our phones. These changes to our lifestyle are actually helping to make us more efficient. Technology has influenced all aspects of our daily lives, the way we learn, the way we interact, the way we read, the way we bank, even the way we shop; everything is now at the click of a button. So why would we not use technology to help us regulate the temperature in our homes? Smart thermostats not only make heating or cooling your home more convenient, they actually help you save money and conserve energy.

What is a smart thermostat? 

Smart thermostats are automated devices that control your home’s heating and/or air conditioning. They perform the same functions as a traditional thermostat by allowing you to control the temperature of your home throughout the day. What makes a smart thermostat different is that it connects to the internet and allows you to control your home’s temperature from your smart phone. 

Most smart thermostats have other features that a traditional thermostat does not. A smart thermostat can show you how long it takes to make the change you’ve requested, so you can see how effective your climate control system really is. It actually works to discourage you from making changes to your home’s temperature that you should not make such as, turning the thermostat all the way down to try “cooling off the house faster” (which never works). Some of the models of smart thermostats will actually learn from your behavior and adjust themselves accordingly (and therefore don’t even need you to program them). The biggest difference and benefit of smart thermostats is, of course, that you can manage them right from your phone or a web-app. This feature is what gives you full control to tweak the programming, allowing you to save money, and see the financial benefits immediately. 

Popular Smart Thermostat Brands 

One of the most popular brands of smart thermostats is the Nest Thermostat. This one was the first of its kind and therefore the most widely known. This product came out of the gate with a lot of great features, making it a powerful pioneer. The Nest thermostat has a lot of positives; it combines a good-looking design and a bright LCD that provides a wealth of useful data with powerful remote management apps and tools to help you save money. In addition to that it has key features that make it a great contender to other brands. It is a learning thermostat, which can sense whether someone’s home, whether the air is suddenly getting humid, or someone’s fired up the oven, and adjust itself accordingly.

As this thermostat picked up in popularity other smart thermostats followed, brands like Ecobee Smart Thermostat, Honeywell Prestige series, Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat, and Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat are all other popular smart thermostat brands. Each of these brands are slightly different in price, features, and benefits. It’s important to research each thermostat to find which one will be the best solution for you.

If you are wondering if there is a down side to these wonderful devices, it is important to mention that the initial purchase of these thermostats is quite pricey. The price of these thermostats can range from $150 – $500 which makes them way more expensive than a traditional thermostat which would only range from $100 – $150. Keep in mind that these thermostats are investments and the EPA’s Energy Star program concluded that homes with programmable or smart thermostats could save up to $180 per year on heating and cooling, which is a sizable chunk of change.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


Can Lightning Ruin my AC?

 

When lightning strikes an air conditioning unit it can damage the system. Unfortunately, this is not a myth; it is something to be aware of and something to watch for because the effect may not be immediately apparent. Over the course of a few months following a nearby or direct lightning strike, you might notice your air conditioner doesn’t work as well.

ASAP Heating and Cooling wants you to look for some potential problems with your air conditioning following a lightning strike: 

  • Damaged compressor 
  • Burned wires
  • Damaged capacitor
  • Blown fuses

These problems can range from simple fixes to expensive replacements. In order to understand your situation, it is important to have a professional from ASAP Heating and Cooling inspect your air conditioning system. Skipping a post lighting strike inspection could cause your system further damage by allowing stressed equipment to run inefficiently and wear down other parts of your unit.

Power Surges as a Result of Lightning Strikes

Though you may fear lighting hitting your unit directly and causing damage the truth is that the initial lightning strike isn’t what typically damages an AC unit. The real damage to your air conditioning system is from the power surges that follows an outage. These surges will cause damage to your AC condenser.

ASAP Heating and Cooling would like to provide you with some ways to prevent your AC unit from being damaged during a lightning storm (these tips will not guarantee protection from damage, but will help avoid damage):

  • Shut your system off from the thermostat.
  • Shut off the electrical circuit to the entire HVAC system.
  • Purchase whole-home surge protectors.
  • If you live in a high strike area, you may need to consult a professional about installing lightning rods.

If you’ve noticed a decline in the performance of your AC after a thunderstorm it is important to call the professionals at ASAP Heating and Cooling to make sure to have your HVAC unit inspected immediately to avoid more expensive replacements down the road.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


How to Read an EnergyGuide Label 

 

There is nothing exciting about going to wash a load of laundry and realizing that your washer is no longer functioning. Replacing your home appliances is typically inconvenient and fairly expensive to replace. However, there is an opportunity in this situation to upgrade an old (energy inefficient) appliance to a newer, energy saving, cost efficient, model that will allow you to save money long term and leave less of an environmental footprint. 

These energy-saving appliances are easy to locate in the store because they bare a bright yellow label that reads EnergyGuide. The EnergyGuide is extremely helpful in understanding the product you are about to buy and helps you make the best decision on how this investment will fit into your home and lifestyle. Manufacturers of most major home appliances are required to attach these labels to their products under the FTC’s Appliance Labeling Rule.

The intention of this label is to tell you how much energy an appliance uses and makes it easier to compare the energy use of similar models. Since these large home appliances are usually over $1,000, details like this can help you make the best decision for your budget. The more energy efficient an appliance is, the less it costs to run, and the lower your utility bills will be. Using less energy is not only good for your future energy bills but also for the environment, as they can help reduce air pollution and conserve natural resources.

Here are some key things to notice on the EnergyGuide Label when reviewing it:

  • Key product features are listed at the top left, under the EnergyGuide logo.
  • Estimated yearly operating cost savings is listed in the middle.
  • Under the cost savings is the cost range to help you compare the energy use of different models with similar features.
  • The next number is the estimated yearly electric use and measured in kWh (kilowatt per hour).
  • At the bottom, right you will see the Energy Star™ logo, which means the product is better for the environment because it uses less energy than standard models.


At ASAP Heating and Cooling, we believe in energy conservation, which is why all heating and cooling systems sold by our company bear the Energy Star™ rating.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


Why Should I Buy Energy Efficient Appliances? 

 

To understand why you should get energy efficient appliances, it is important to understand what energy efficiency is and how it can really benefit your life and your bank account; not to mention the environment overall.

What does it mean to be energy efficient?

Energy efficiency means using less energy to provide the same service. The phrase “energy efficiency” is often used as a shorthand to describe any kind of energy-saving measure. The team at ASAP Heating and Cooling feels that energy efficiency is always a good idea and would like to give some tips on energy efficient home products. This does not mean that you have to switch out everything in your house immediately, but may help you make more energy efficient purchases in the future as home items need to be replaced. These items can include: Energy Star

  • LED lights
  • Programmable thermostats
  • Energy Star appliances

Manufacturers label all products that meet the Energy Star™ standards. A blue and white label identifies the product as Energy Star™ rated. Look for these products when you are purchasing new appliances.

Is energy efficiency really that important?

Improving energy efficiency is a key tool for reducing CO2 emissions. CO2 emissions are, in large part, the carbon dioxide emissions from the combustion of fossil fuels. CO2 gases disturb the earth’s balance and atmosphere. This is what is leading to an increase in the earth’s surface temperature and causing negative effects on climate, sea level rise and world agriculture. By using energy efficient products, appliances, cars, etc. and working toward energy conservation and low-carbon energy sources we can help counter these effects on our environment.

Can being energy efficient really help me save money?

The answer is “yes.” Though purchasing Energy Star™ appliances, LED lights, programmable thermostats, and other energy conscious items, may be slightly more expensive at the point of purchase; the savings that you gain by using these products out-weights the initial spend. The more energy efficient appliances that you add to your home, the more you will see these savings compound. The reason for the savings is because you will actually be using less energy to receive the same service, the result is a lower energy bill!

If you have any questions about energy efficient air conditioning units, call us today. We believe in energy conservation, and that is why all heating and cooling systems sold by ASAP Heating and Cooling bear the Energy Star™ rating.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


Five Interesting Facts about Air Conditioning 

 

Don’t think that air conditioning was a fun topic? Though it may not seem like a great discussion topic, there are some really cool facts that can give you a greater appreciation for your heating and cooling system!

  1. You can thank air conditioning (or the lack there of) for summer blockbusters. Before most every household had AC, especially during the Great Depression, the movie theaters were the coolest place to go. People would go to the movies to get out of the heat and, as a result, studios started releasing their biggest films during the summer.

 

  1. The very first president to acquire cooling in the Oval Office was Herbert Hoover. This came during the reconstruction of the West Wing in 1930, after extensive damage done by a Christmas Eve fire in 1929. Central air conditioning system was installed by the Carrier Engineering Company during this renovation. However, it wasn’t until Franklin Roosevelt that air conditioning was added to the White House’s private quarters (bedrooms) in 1933.

  1. One of the very first buildings to install an air conditioning system was the New York Stock Exchange in 1903. 

 

  1. The founder of the Heating and Cooling Brand Carrier® was Willis Carrier. He was the person who invented the first modern AC Unit. He created the air conditioning that we know and love today in the year 1902. However, air conditioner sales did not really explode until the 1950’s and by 1953 more than one million air conditioner units had been sold.

 

  1. Air conditioning has helped to change our housing architecture. House builds shifted due to this invention, and with the new and widespread use of air conditioning many features that buildings used to have (high ceilings, brick structures, breezeways, sleeping porches, etc.) are now being replaced for less pricey solutions. Current structures are built to use air conditioning efficiently, and older structures would be unbearable in the summer without these artificial cooling features.

Air conditioning is a modern luxury that most of us take for granted. Looking back at the time before our AC units cooled us down on hot summer days, puts into perspective just how great of a comfort we get from this invention. If your AC unit is not working to its full potential, don’t forget to call ASAP Heating and Cooling and let one of our professional technicians assure that you are as comfortable as you can be.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling


Can I Add New Insulation Over Old Insulation?

Does your home need more insulation? Looking to improve your home’s cooling and heating efficiency? If you’re wondering whether or not it’s okay to install a new layer of insulation over existing insulation, check out our guidelines below.

 When to Add New Insulation Over Old Insulation

As long as the old insulation is in good condition and shows no evidence of exposure to moisture or wetness, you can add new insulation over existing insulation. Here are some tips for installing the new insulation over existing insulation:

 ·         Faced insulation should not be placed on top of existing attic insulation. Any new batt or roll insulation that is going to be added on top of existing attic insulation needs to be without a vapor retarder (face). The presence of a vapor retarder between layers of insulation can trap moisture that could lead to mold. Any existing batt or roll insulation in the attic should have the facing (vapor retarder) against the attic drywall or no facing at all.

  • Only use batt, rolled or blown loose-fill insulation (fiberglass or cellulose) on top of the old insulation.
  •  If you are installing rolled insulation, make sure to install it perpendicular to the old insulation. Be sure to use un-faced rolls.
  • Avoid taking down the new insulation.
  • If you discover vermiculite insulation, make sure to have it tested for asbestos and removed if it is found.

 When to Remove Old Insulation Before Adding New Insulation

  • Old insulation should be removed before new insulation can be installed when:
  • Old insulation is wet, has been wet, or appears like it has been wet in the past.
  • Evidence of mold is present; the mold should be cleaned before new insulation is installed. The cause of the mold or moisture should be identified and repaired and affected insulation removed.

 ASAP Heating and Cooling serves customers in the in the Ft. Myers and Cape Coral, FL areas. Please feel free to contact us at 239-217-4148 with any questions you may have regarding the addition of new insulation in your home.

Written by Direct Heating and Cooling