Do Ceiling Fans Help in the Winter?

While many people know how ceiling fans work, fewer are aware that ceiling fans in winter can be used in a similar way as they are used in summer. Using ceiling fans in winter can help facilitate heating a room. In order to take advantage of them, you’ll need to first locate the switch on the fan that controls the direction of the blade.

In the summer, to get the wind-chill effect, the blades need to run in a counterclockwise fashion. This is the setting that most fans use automatically. Test your fan by turning it on and identifying the fan’s direction. If you need to, switch the fan to run in the clockwise direction to enhance heating.

How to Use a Ceiling Fan in Winter

In the clockwise direction, the blades push air up. This is key to facilitating a more comfortable room in the heating season. That’s because, when the blades push air down, they create the wind-chill effect, helping to facilitate evaporation. If you leave the setting in this mode, you will definitely feel cooler!

In the heating mode, however, the blades push air up, helping the fan to better distribute heat. Here’s how:

  • As the blades move, they draw in air from around the room and push it up toward the ceiling.

  • The force of the air pushes the air at the top of the room toward the walls, at the outer edges.

  • Then, the air moves back down to the ground.

  • Since air at the top of a room is warmer, the entire room starts to feel warmer as the air is pushed back down to the bottom of the room.

  • The process repeats.

  • The room gets warmer and warmer.

By some estimations, experts report that homeowners can save as much as 15 percent on heating costs when they run ceiling fans during the winter. Due to the improved distribution of heat in the room, thermostats can be turned down. When you do that, your heater runs less often, consuming less energy.

Unlike your heater or air conditioner, you shouldn’t turn ceiling fans on and let them run continuously. In most cases, to benefit from ceiling fan use, you need to be in the room to take advantage of the enhanced heating. You don’t want to work your way through the home, turning on ceiling fans, and then leaving the room. The fans won’t distribute heat throughout your home.

HVAC Maintenance To-Do List For October

With fall now upon us, cooler days and nights are expected which means you’ll be relying on your HVAC system for your heating needs. With winter on its way, we recommend having your equipment inspected and maintained to make sure it’s in good working condition. Consider the maintenance to-do list below:

Change Your Air Filter

It’s important to change your air filter now if you haven’t done so in the last few months. For disposable filters, remove the existing one from the system and insert a clean replacement. For reusable filters, wash it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Just be sure that it’s dry before you put it back in the filter compartment.

Inspect HVAC Components

Next, check to make sure your HVAC system’s vents, including registers and return air grilles, aren’t blocked. The area around them must be clear of any obstructions, such as carpets, rugs and furniture. Otherwise, the restricted airflow will cause the equipment to overheat, which may result in performance issues.

Invest in a Zoning System

If you want to cut off heating to unused areas of your home, be sure not to close more than 20 percent of the HVAC system’s vents.

Give Your Heating System a Test Run

Test your heating system to see if it comes on and is working properly. Do this before temperatures drop so you’ll have the time to make any necessary repairs before cold weather sets in.

Should you run into problems with your equipment this October, there’s only one company you should call. JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air is your go-to team for heating and air conditioning maintenance. Our expert technicians have the knowledge required to properly care for your HVAC system, no matter the issue.

 

Professional HVAC Inspection

Have you serviced your heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) system for the winter? Whether you are a homeowner or a property manager, you will need to find a reliable HVAC professional to help you service your HVAC system. A well maintained and serviced HVAC system is highly efficient in both its functionality and energy consumption.

A professional contractor should inspect your HVAC system at least twice a year, once in the fall for the heating system and once in the spring for the cooling system. The inspection is meant to detect any potential problems and ensure that the HVAC system is working as efficiently as possible.

The HVAC inspection involves checking filters, inspecting electrical switches, belts, contacts, motors, safety switches, gas pressure, and refrigerant levels. Call us today to schedule your inspection.

Don’t Put Off AC Repairs until Next Summer

The late summer heat can be pretty bad, even with a few days of rain and some cooling now and then. Your air conditioning system  still has some heavy work ahead of it before the true cooling of fall arrives. And if your AC doesn’t seem like it’s up to battling the heat, leaving hot spots around the home and letting humidity get out of control, it’s something we recommend you investigate now.

Don’t let problems linger because cooler weather is on the horizon. Delaying repair work for an air conditioner means bigger costs in the future, not to mention a possible full system breakdown. Call the professionals at JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air today to keep your HVAC system operating in tip top shape. 

What To Do When Your HVAC is Running But Not Cooling

When you have a running compressor, but your air conditioning unit is not producing cool air, there are potentially a number of things that could be causing this problem. The first areas that should be checked can be completed easily and quickly. These are fixes which should be accessible to any home owner. If these actions do not fix the problem it may be time to bring in the experts from JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air to further diagnose what to do when your air conditioner is running but not cooling.

Easy Fixes

Before you assume the worst, run through this quick and easy list of common sources of malfunction that often decrease air conditioning efficiency. You should be able to run through this list fairly quickly.

  1. Make sure that all windows and doors are closed.

  2. Make sure your supply and return vents are open and unobstructed.

  3. Make sure that your thermostat is set to cool, and is turned down below room temperature.

  4. Ensure that you have any humidifiers turned off.

  5. Some units may even have a red reset button on your outdoor unit near the refrigerant line. If you can find this, try pushing it. Sometimes a simple system reset will correct the problem.

Why Is My Air Conditioner Leaking Water?

It’s your worst nightmare: you wake up soaked in sweat on a hot summer morning. You crank the air conditioner and your home does not cool down. If you fail to take action, you might be watching while an HVAC specialist installs a new air conditioner.

Avoid this disaster scenario. Act immediately and perform a quick inspection — you may be able to identify the problem on your own and avoid a repair bill. If your air conditioner is leaking in or outside of the house,  the problem most likely stems from at least one of the following issues:   

1.  The Drain Line is Clogged

A clogged drain line is the most common source of leaks in home air conditioners. When the drain line is stopped up, water cannot drain from the overflow pan and out through the drainpipe (or outside, depending on your A/C’s setup).
Check the tubing for dirt and debris. If you feel resistance, clear the blockage. Water is then free to flow into the drainpipe and out the bottom.

Many modern A/C units have an emergency shutoff function to protect the device from damage if a clog is detected in the drain line. While this feature is helpful and prevents water damage, it can be puzzling for an owner when their A/C unit shuts down unexpectedly. If your A/C suddenly turns off, a clogged drain line could be initiating the shutdown.

2.  Drain Overflow Pan Cracked or Damaged

While you’re checking the drain line, you should inspect the drain overflow pan underneath the unit as well. Carefully inspect each corner and along the edge for cracks, notches, or holes. Anything allowing water to spill out onto the floor before it gets to the drain hose is an issue. Small holes can be repaired with epoxy, but replacing the drain pan entirely is the best way to fix this problem.

3.  The Air Filter is Dirty

Your A/C unit’s air filter needs to be changed on a regular basis. If you leave the filter in too long, the filter gets dirty and air flow is impeded.The air around the evaporator coils gets too cold, and the coils freeze up, actually forming ice in and on the unit. When the ice melts, water drips and you get a leak.

Most filters are meant to last one to two months. To be sure you prevent leaks, check the filters more frequently, especially when the unit is in heavy use. Simply changing the filter regularly can prevent a lot of problems and make your A/C run more efficiently.

4.  Broken Pump

If the pump is broken, no water will be drawn from the overflow pan. The pan will fill until it begins dripping onto the floor. You can test the pump by pouring some water into the pan. If nothing happens, and you know the drain line isn’t clogged, the pump must be broken. At this point, call us and we can schedule a service call with one of our  technicians.  Our expert HVAC technicians will get your unit up and running quickly so you can enjoy the summer.

Do Power Outages Affect My HVAC Equipment?

Severe weather and fallen trees are some of the most common causes of power outages. We have all been inconvenienced by the momentary interruptions or worse, hours of no electricity. Once the power is restored our biggest concern is resetting the clocks throughout our homes. But have you considered the effects of power outages on your HVAC equipment?

If you are like most homeowners, you have taken steps to protect your valuable equipment with surge protectors and battery back-up power supplies. The computers in your home may already use an external hard drive or cloud service to routinely save your data in case your computer stops working. But what can you do for your HVAC system?

Back-up power generators that are large enough to operate your HVAC equipment and other critical electrical equipment can keep your family safe in the most disastrous conditions. And an electrician can recommend a generator that will run your heating and air conditioning as well as other items in your home in case of a power emergency.

If you do not have a back-up generator, you should take some basic steps to protect your valuable HVAC system in the event of a power outage.

  1. Turn off the system at the thermostat. This prevents the system from abruptly starting when power is restored. Sudden surges of electricity could damage the equipment and shorten its lifetime.

  2. When the power is restored, check your circuit breakers first. Reset any that were tripped by the power outage.

  3. Wait at least 20 minutes after resetting the breakers before adjusting the thermostat for your HVAC system. The reason for doing this is that most modern heating and cooling systems have internal circuit breakers that will need time to reset.

    The HVAC equipment should operate normally. If you have problems restarting the system call JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air. We can schedule a visit by one of our technicians. Many times the problem is easy to remedy, but you may have a larger problem looming due to damage caused by the surge of electricity before or after the power outage.

     

Should You Turn Off Your AC When You’re Not at Home?

Most homeowners assume that the best way to save money on cooling costs is to turn their air conditioner off when they’re not at home. But there’s a much better way – Turn your thermostat up instead of turning the AC completely off. More specifically, we suggest turning the set temperature up 7 to 10 degrees while you’re away for the day.

Turning up the thermostat is the better option because:
    Protects your home from mold and bugs
    Saves you money
    Keeps you comfortable

Let’s take a closer look at these benefits.

Benefit #1: Turning the thermostat up protects your home from mold and bugs

Turning off your air conditioner can cause your home’s indoor humidity levels to soar. And two gross intruders who love humidity include mold and bugs. You see, your air conditioner doesn’t just cool your air, it also dehumidifies it. So when you turn your AC completely off, it won’t take long for the humidity in your home to soar to upwards of 60%, which is ideal for mold growth and bug infestations.

But if you turn the thermostat up 7 to 10 degrees, your AC will kick on every once in awhile to control the indoor humidity and maintain a healthy humidity level between 45%-55%.

Benefit #2: Turning the thermostat up keeps you comfortable

No one loves coming home to a humid, stuffy house. But that’s what you’re setting yourself up for when you turn your AC completely off. Instead, turning your air conditioner’s thermostat up 7 to 10 degrees will help manage the indoor humidity and will keep temperatures at a tolerable level.So you can stay comfortable and save money at the same time.

Benefit #3: Turning your thermostat up saves you money

Turning up the thermostat 7 to 10 degrees for 8 or more hours a day can save you 10% on cooling costs throughout the summer. When you raise the thermostat, you decrease the difference between the outside and the inside temperature. And that lowers your AC’s workload, saving you energy.

Not sure you can remember to raise the thermostat every morning? Think about investing in a programmable thermostat, which can change the temperature automatically for you.

Six Tips for Getting Your HVAC System Ready for the Summer Heat

Before we know it, the hot temperatures are going to arrive and stay. We’ll want our AC unit to deliver cool air on demand.

What happens if the cool air doesn’t arrive? Instead of waiting for the hottest weather to get here, now is the time to prepare your HVAC system for its most active time of the year.

Here are 6 steps you should take before turning on your air conditioning unit this year:

Safety First – Before working on your HVAC system, make sure the power is off.

Remove the Cover – This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s an essential first step. Many homeowners use covers, blankets, or lids to protect the coil on their outdoor air conditioning units during the winter months. If you start your system with the cover still on, you’re risking serious damage to your system.

Inspect the Unit – Look at the panels around your unit to make sure nothing is missing or misaligned. If you find that any panels are out of place exposing any of the system’s electrical components, it’s important to call a technician right away.

Remove any Debris –  If there’s debris around or in your unit, it’s time to clear it out.

Check the Coolant Lines – Your system likely has insulation around the coolant lines which help to prevent wasted energy. If the foam insulation looks cracked or frayed, it should be replaced.

Change the Filter – This is the simplest and  most important step for making sure your HVAC system is operating correctly. Ideally, you should start each season with a new filter, but it’s especially important to start the summer season with one.

Now it’s time to turn on your system and let it run. If it’s making any strange sounds or your house isn’t cooling adequately, it’s time to schedule a maintenance appointment. Please give us a call at 888-365-1171.

Ventilation Tips | Everyone Needs Some Fresh Air

Fresh air is hard to come by with most of us spending the majority of our time inside. On average, only seven percent of our time is spent outdoors. We live about 87 percent of our lives indoors according to the EPA. And we spend an additional six percent of our lives in vehicles.  Learn more about the importance of indoor ventilation from our industry experts.

What are Ventilation Guidelines?

In residential homes, terms such as air change rate or air changes per hour indicate how often inside air is replaced or re-circulated with outside air. Air change rates range from 0.4 to 1.5 air changes per hour depending on how tightly the house is sealed.

What Does This Really Mean?

Homes naturally have cracks and crevices that allow small amounts of outside air in. The simple solution is to open the windows in your home on a warm, sunny day. But for most of us, it’s either too hot or too cold to keep the windows open year-round.

For homeowners, we recommend installing a filtration system depending on where you live and your health concerns. Outside air is full of pollen, dust, moisture and other contaminants which ultimately decrease indoor air quality. Call the professionals at JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air today.