- Questions to ask yourself before you call
- Is the thermostat turned on and the temperature control properly set?
- Is the power switch turned on? It usually looks like a light switch near the furnace.
- Did you check the breakers/fuses for the furnace and air conditioner?
- Have you paid your gas bill?
- Have you paid your electric bill?
- Is the filter dirty or clogged?
- Is the outdoor air conditioning unit clean and clear of debris?
- Set thermostat at one temperature. Constant adjusting can cause higher utility costs.
- If you are using your thermostat as a setback type, limit the setbacks to twice a day such as when you are at work and when you are sleeping.
- Only setback the thermostat about 5% of the desired temperature (approximately five degrees).
- During the heating season, try not to set the thermostat below 65 degrees.
- In the cooling season, try not to set the thermostat below 70 degrees. Besides higher utility costs, this can cause the indoor coil to freeze and cause condensation in the house.
Air Conditioning And Heat Pump Units
- Make it a habit to look at the outdoor heat pump during the winter months for signs of excessive ice or snow build-up on or around the heat pump. Especially after bad weather.
- If the unit is covered in ice or snow, then the ice or snow must be removed for the unit to work properly. Turn the thermostat to Emergency heat or off and remove the snow and ice. You can remove the ice or snow by pouring warm or hot water over the unit. Even cold water from a hose will help if that’s all you have available. When the unit is clear of snow and ice, turn the thermostat back to normal heating. If the unit ices up again, call us for service.
- Do not let the outdoor unit sit underneath a leaking gutter. In the winter months, water will drip on the top of the unit and freeze solid. This will restrict the air flow and cause the whole unit to freeze-up.
- Outdoor Units should be elevated 4 to 8 inches above ground level to keep coils clear of snow and ice and to allow for proper drainage. Contact our Service Department if you would like your unit raised.
- Keep bushes, shrubs or any vegetation pruned back at least 12-18 inches around all sides of the outdoor unit.
- Check air filters monthly. Clean or replace as needed.
- Don’t forget to schedule your Spring & Fall Tune-ups to ensure optimum performance, cost efficiency and for your health as well as your family’s!
- Parts And Labor Warranties
The manufacturer can’t control the way their equipment is installed. They have to rely on their dealers to do it right. That’s why they give absolutely no labor warranty. You will, however, receive a 1-year labor warranty when you buy new equipment because the manufacturer makes every dealer sign an agreement stating that they (the dealer) will provide at least a 1-year labor warranty.
The dealer is then reimbursed for the parts only! The labor costs come out of their pocket. What happens is, some companies don’t add any “cushion” into their price. They want to sell everything as cheap as they can (because they get more business that way). That sounds great to the customer, but when equipment starts failing under warranty, it’s the customer who ends up paying the price.
At the very least, the customer usually has to endure longer waits and “second class” treatment from companies that put “paying” customers first. In extreme cases, the customer could be left without any labor warranty at all when the company goes out of business. It happens more than you might think.
Compressors And Heat Ex-changers
Be careful when your salesperson starts talking about warranties. It’s really easy for them to tell you you’re getting a 5-year, 10-year, 20-year, or lifetime warranty and just gloss over the fact that their terrific sounding warranty is for that part only and doesn’t include labor. The four different warranties you should be aware of are for your parts, labor, compressor (on an air conditioner) and heat ex-changer (on the furnace).
Some HVAC companies offer a longer warranty as part of their regular service. They’ll even increase the parts warranty at their own risk. You’ll probably pay more, but it could be worth it. Look for the longest warranty you can find. In addition to these standard warranties, you can also purchase an extended warranty. These are sometimes offered by the manufacturer and almost always offered by the dealer. They usually provide an additional 5 to 10 years of parts and labor coverage and are worth the extra money. You’ll usually end up spending an extra $200 – $400 for this protection.
Nothing could be better for your system than having it cleaned and tuned-up before each heating & cooling season. Preventive maintenance is to your heating/cooling system what oil changes are to your car. Not only will it help your system run better and last longer, but you could also void your warranty if the system is not maintained properly. It’s definitely worth it. Becoming one of our SAM (Service Agreement Membership) Customers is a great way to establish a regular preventive maintenance routine.
Frequently Asked Questions
- When should I replace my existing heating and cooling unit(s)?
The time frame to replace an existing unit would be anywhere from 12-15 years old. A few units last longer than that, but regular maintenance can make your existing equipment last a longer period of time. Also, when replacing a unit (heater or air conditioner), replace both units and select the same manufacturer as well. This can extend the lifespan of your new units.
What is the regular maintenance needed for my heating or cooling unit(s)?
We recommend that your heating and cooling system be checked and serviced twice a year; a Spring & Fall Tune-Up. Also we recommend that you change your filter regularly, depending on the type of filter you have. This will eliminate the many problems that can occur when proper maintenance isn’t done.
Becoming one of our SAM (Service Agreement Membership) Customers is a great way to ensure the proper regular maintenance is being completed.
Why is it important to have a Maintenance Agreement?
This is one way of protecting you from sudden breakdowns in equipment and a reminder that regular maintenance is needed. By becoming one of our SAM (Service Agreement Membership) Customers, you will be reminded when it’s time to schedule your fall and spring tune-ups. Also, if your existing equipment is in need of repair or replacement, then your part may be covered or you many get a discount on replacing the new equipment.*
*See our SAM (Service Agreement Membership) page for plan details.
Why is it important to choose a reliable company?
Most companies in the HVAC industry don’t express the need to be there for their customers after installation or service of heating and cooling systems. Research a company’s background, ask a friend or neighbor, or see recent work that they have done. A good reliable company, like Best Service, will back every part of our work, whether it is through our maintenance agreements or by excellent customer service. Remember, you are spending a lot of money on repairs or replacement of equipment and the last thing you want to worry about is if it was done right!
Why do I need to change my filter regularly?
It is important to change filters regularly to ensure proper air flow for your system, to prevent germs or dirt from being recycled into your home, and to avoid sudden breakdowns and costly repairs. Not all filters are alike. Depending on the type of filter you have, you may need to change it more frequently. Call us to find out how often to replace your particular type of filter and to see what else you can do to eliminate problems.
What should I look for when choosing a new furnace, heat pump or AC unit?
When you are ready to replace your existing equipment, it is good to keep 3 things in mind. First, choose a manufacturer that has a good reputation for repairs and maintenance. Also, choose a model offering high efficiency equipment to bring you better comfort and to help lower your seasonal energy bills. A High Efficient Variable Speed Furnace or Heat Pump is one great way. Second, choose the correct equipment size and system for your home. Don’t just buy one that is on sale and seems like a great deal, do some research on it or ask the installation representative for more product information. Finally, choose a reliable company with excellent customer satisfaction. Ask for referrals. Remember, this is a one time investment for the next 15 years, choose wisely!