IERNA's Heating & Cooling Blog : Archive for July, 2012

Air Conditioning Guide: What to Do About Cool Spots

Monday, July 30th, 2012

Sitting on your couch watching TV should be an enjoyable experience, especially after a long day at the office. But, if your Brandon air conditioner deposits an abnormally high volume of cold air directly onto your couch, making you shiver despite the 90 degree heat outside, you may have a cool spot.

Cool spots are an unfortunate side effect of modern air conditioning technology. They occur when HVAC systems are improperly sized or ductwork is improperly installed. Other factors like insulation, vent configuration or window placement can also contribute to the presence of a cool spot (and possibly some hot spots). So, what can you do about it? There are a few options, starting with a quick inspection of the space.

Checking for Common Problems

Your contractor will check a number of things. Most importantly, they’ll measure the size of your Brandon  HVAC system and compare it to the dimensions and particulars of your house. Usually, in the case of cool spots, the problem is directly related to an oversized system. When it turns on, even for a few minutes, it produces more cold air than is necessary, flooding your home with cooling. The thermostat recognizes this and the system shuts off soon after turning on. As a result, you’ll feel fluctuation between cold and warm as the system fails to properly condition the space.

Modern systems are sized for your house at 100% capacity. So, when the system turns on, it should stay on for a substantial period of time, keeping your home cool. Turning off and on frequently is bad for the system and wastes energy (plus it produces those pesky cool spots). Keep in mind that hot spots can also occur if the system isn’t powerful enough.

Your contractor will also look for vent placement and duct configuration. Improper placement of vents can lead to pooling of cool air that creates cool spots. By checking for potential problems in the layout of your HVAC system, a contractor can determine if new vents or ducts are needed to solve the problem.

Fixing the Cool Spots

For now, you may just want to move to another part of the house. Cool spots rarely affect the entire space – they tend to cluster around vents and outlets and can usually be fixed by resizing or adjusting your system. However, only your Brandon air conditioning contractor can tell you for sure what the best solution will be for your air conditioning issues so make sure to schedule an inspection with Ierna’s Heating & Cooling today!

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HVAC Question: What is a Heat Pump Reversing Valve?

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Did you know that heat pumps can be used for both heating and cooling in your Tampa home? The reversing valve is what makes this possible, read on to learn more!

In General

Functioning on the same principle as refrigerators, the heat pump uses a liquid to absorb heat as it turns into a gas and release heat as it returns to a liquid state. During the summer, the heat pump operates as a standard central air conditioner, removing heat from the house and venting it to the outside.

In the winter, the heat pump reverses this process, extracting heat from the cold air outside and releasing it inside the house. The heat pump is very efficient when the outside temperature is around 45 degrees Fahrenheit to 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but it becomes less efficient as the temperature drops.

The Heart of the Matter

The reversing valve in the heat pump switches the process from absorbing heat from the inside to evacuate outdoors like an air conditioner to extracting heat from cold temperatures outside and redistributing it indoors.  The thermal energy at play is the natural force of heat to move toward cooler temperatures, releasing energy in the shift.  Heat pumps take care of both and the reversing valve controls the direction of the flow.

The reversing valve has two states of operation: relaxed and energized.  In the relaxed state, the heat pump can be programmed to introduce either heated or cooled temperatures into the conditioned space, depending on the direction of the flow of refrigerant through the closed loop.

By applying a 24 volt charge of AC current (a low voltage typically used in HVAC systems), the valve becomes energized and reverses the flow, producing the opposite conditioning.  The reversing valve may be driven by the heat pump through the use of a control board or directly by a thermostat.

Will a Heat Pump Work in My Home?

To determine if a heat pump is right for the heating and cooling of your Tampa home, call Ierna’s Heating & Cooling. We will determine the needs of your home and which Tampa HVAC system will work best for you and your family!

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A Thank You From a Wonderful Customer

Friday, July 20th, 2012

Customer Review | Tampa | Ierna's Heating & CoolingWe always enjoy helping customers by repairing problems quickly or installing new high efficiency money saving systems, but this is one of the most wonderful thank yous that we have received. Ierna’s is dedicated to the community and gives back in many different ways to help those in need. We are glad that we could provide excellent service to the customer below, and happy to hear that it has made a difference in his home and life.

“Today two of your employees, David and Dallas completed the first phase of a complete rebuild of my HVAC system in my home. Briefy, my home received fire damage in January, 2012 as a result of a gas dryer catching on fire causing extensive smoke and soot damage to the interior of the house.

After much back and forth with my home owners insurance I finally can to begin my long road in rebuilding.

Luckly, I found your company to do the HVAC work. I am thrilled by David and Dallas committment and dedication to my project. They both worked so hard under very hot and humid conditions without once uttering a negative comments either to myself or between each other. They knew what needed to be done and got busy to get the job done.

On a personal note, this project means a lot to me because it’s dedicated to my late wife who passed away in the house in 2009. I think of this rebuild as a tribute to her and her memory.

Again, thank David and Dallas for me in helping to begin back what was lost during some very difficult times.

You should be proud of these men for representing your company in a very professional manner as well as for a ‘job well done’.”

-Jim of Lithia, FL

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Air Conditioning Tip: How to Fix Wrong Sized Air Filters on Heating or Air Conditioning Systems

Monday, July 16th, 2012

If you moved into a new home or had someone change the filters on your Tampa heating or air conditioning system for you, you may notice that whoever did the job put on the wrong size filter. This is not uncommon and is usually the result of an effort to save either time or money. However, in the long run it actually costs both. Here is how you can fix the problem of a wrong size filter.

 The WRONG Way

If you have a filter that is too big for your Tampa AC system, it may seem like an easy enough fix– just fold it over or trim it down, right? Not so fast. 

Folding the filter over makes for an imperfect seal. Air will leak through and around the bend, bypassing the filter entirely. This causes dirt and debris to build up on the fan, slows down air flow, degrades performance, decreases air quality and overall makes a big mess that you will have to pay to fix or clean up later.

Bending or cutting the filter also decreases its structural integrity. The whole filter can collapse while installed, creating not just a performance issue and a potentially costly repair, but also possibly creating unsafe conditions.

Furthermore, don’t give into the temptation to run your HVAC system without a filter for the time being. The debris will quickly build up in your AC system, as well as being blown into your home. Heating and cooling systems should always be operated with the proper filter installed.

The RIGHT Way

So, what do you do when you have an air filter that is the wrong size? The only solution is to find the right size. If you are having trouble finding the right air filter for your system, try these tips:

  • Refer to your owner’s manual for the filter model number.
  • Bring the make and model information of your heating/cooling system to the store and ask someone there for help.
  • Have a professional inspect your system and replace the filter. (You should have a professional inspection once a year, anyway.)
  • For HVAC systems that are large or have special dimensions, special order custom filters to fit.

Above all, never operate your Tampa AC system without a clean, correctly sized filter properly installed. For any help with your air filters, give Ierna’s Heating & Cooling a call!

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Ierna’s Heating & Cooling: Central Pasco Business of The Year!

Friday, July 13th, 2012

The Central Pasco Business of The Year was awarded to Ierna’s Heating & Cooling!

Business of the Year | Pasco County | Ierna's Heating and Cooling

Business of the Year | Pasco County | Ierna's Heating and Cooling

Business of the Year | Pasco County | Ierna's Heating and Cooling

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Air Conditioning FAQs: How Do I Determine the Cooling Capacity of My Central AC or Heat Pump System?

Monday, July 9th, 2012

For any type of air conditioning system in Tampa, the cooling capacity is measured in BTU’s. This is important to know if the system doesn’t seem to be adequately cooking your home, and there are many different ways to check the cooling capacity of your AC system.

1. Air Conditioning System’s Age and Serial Numbers

An air conditioner’s age will usually give you a general idea for its cooling capacity, and if you aren’t sure, you can always check the serial number. Because serial number formats vary by the year the equipment was made, you can check to see how old an air conditioner is from looking at the serial number.

The first four digits of every serial number is the week and year the unit was manufactured.  For example, the serial# 1188E53294 on a compressor unit tells us that it was made between 1980 and 1990, and to be more exact, week 11 in 1988.

2. Air Conditioner’s Model Number

You should also look at the model number for your specific model because some manufacturers also vary how they assign each number in the serial number; however, they usually stand for tonnage or MBTUH. You can always call us if you aren’t sure how to read the serial number or model number.

3. AC Equipment’s RLA Numbers

RLA stands for “Rated Load Amps,” which means that it’s the manufacturer’s rate of the cooling capacity (also known as the draw) or load while it’s operating (minus the draw when you start the system). Most air conditioning compressor or condenser units will draw 5 to 6 RLA per ton of cooling capacity. You can check the data tag on the compressor for the RLA rating; however, this will need to be translated into BTUH for the total cooling capacity.

Feel free to call one of the Tampa air conditioning experts at Ierna’s Heating & Cooling if you have any questions how to calculate your AC system’s cooling capacity.

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A Rave Review From Land O Lakes, FL

Friday, July 6th, 2012

Customer Review | Land O Lakes | Ierna's Heating & Cooling” I called early in the morning because my outside unit stopped working the night before and caused the air to blow warm. The girl who answered the phone was very polite and took my information and told me that they would be by in the later part of the day and that they would call at least 30min before arrival. I received a call from the service guy in the middle of the afternoon telling me that he would be by around 6:30-7pm and asked if that was acceptable (I’m sure they’re SWAMPED in the Summer). Running just a little late, Matt had the courtesy to call me at about 6:45pm and let me know that he would be closer to 7:15pm and sure enough, he was right on time. He was VERY polite and quickly repaired my unit explaining exactly what he was doing as he went. He gave me advice on how to make sure my unit was well maintained, but wasn’t trying to “sell me” on their maintenance service…just giving me GREAT advice. It may seem silly to some that I’m so pleased with them showing up at 7:15pm, but if you’ve ever had to wait on a repair person “some time between 12-8pm” and they just showed up randomly…you will appreciate the effort of keeping me informed. Also, to get same-day service and not be gauged because of your desperation goes a long way for me. I had a GREAT experience with Ierna’s and would definitely use their services again, although I hope it’s YEARS down the road…..Thanks Matt and Ierna’s!!!”

Ierna’s Heating & Cooling offers air conditioning, heating, duct cleaning, and indoor air quality services in Tampa, Hillsborough, Pasco, Polk and Northern Pinellas Counties. We pride ourselves on excellent customer service and our team of expert technicians.

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Good Luck Ethan at the 2012 World Martial Arts Games!

Friday, July 6th, 2012

We were a Silver Sponsor ($550.00) to help 12 year old, Ethan Dillon join the US Martial Arts Team and travel to Geneva, Switzerland in August to represent the United States in competition at the 2012 World Martial Arts Games.

Charity | Tampa | Ierna's Heating & Cooling

Charity | Tampa | Ierna's Heating & Cooling

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Air Conditioning Guide: What Professional AC Maintenance Includes

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Besides the cool air, what we like most about air conditioning in Tampa is that we don’t have to do anything to still live in a cool climate when it’s boiling outside.  With programmed thermostats adjusting the temperatures automatically, we don’t even have to turn it on.

Therefore, it is very inconvenient (not to mention uncomfortable) when our unit misbehaves and forces us to pay attention.  Our first inclination, suddenly over-heated,  may be to call for help, but often the repair can be accomplished easily or avoided completely by checking the drain line that may be clogged.

When it gets more complicated, it is important to consult a Tampa air conditioning professional.

Air Conditioning 101

Air conditioning is a process which involves the rapid evaporation and condensation of chemicals called refrigerants, compounds that have properties allowing them to change from liquid to gas and back again at low temperatures.

Simply stated: when the liquid evaporates and transforms into gas it absorbs heat.  Compressed tightly together again, the matter condenses back into liquid with a residue of unwanted moist heat that must be released to the outdoors.  Over the course of handling the air to cool it, air conditioners are able to filter dust and dehumidify the air as well.

Annual Service

Air conditioning units are designed to last for quite a while, so long as they are maintained regularly.  A service contract with a reputable company ensures reliable maintenance and establishes a relationship so that if anything should go wrong, your call for help will be at the top of the list with a mechanic who likely knows the details of your particular unit. Here are some of the maintenance tasks that will be performed during your visit:

  • a check for the correct amount of refrigerant in the system;
  • a pressurized system test for any leaks using an actual leak detector tool;
  • a controlled evacuation and disposal of any excess refrigerant instead of an illegal toss in the dumpster;
  • a check for and seal of any duct leakage within the in central systems;
  • a measure of air flow through the evaporator coil;
  • a verification of the correct electric control sequence, making sure the heating and cooling systems cannot operate simultaneously;
  • an inspection, cleaning and maintenance of the electric terminals and applying a non-conductive coating if necessary;
  • a check of all belts for tightness and wear;
  • a check for oil in the motors;
  • a check for the accuracy of the thermostat.

To schedule a maintenance visit, give Ierna’s Heating & Cooling a call today!

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