For many people who live in Florida, the air inside their house is more polluted than the air that is outside. If you live near a highway or an industrial plant, the air inside your house will be much dirtier than other people’s homes. There are many air cleaners and air purifiers that could be a solutions for you, especially if you or a family member has asthma, or allergies, and make it easier to clean your home. Keeping your air conditioning maintained properly will go some way to achieving this, but installing proper an air purification system will definitely help you to breathe cleaner air. This is brilliant for people who suffer from seasonal allergies in Florida.
Pollutants VS. Machines
Indoor air pollutants fall into two general categories. The most common air pollutants that many home owners are worried about are particulate matter, these are microscopic particles that can be suspended in the air. Dust, animal dander, pollen, dust mites and molds are all particulate matter. After a time in the air, the particles will fall and collect as dirt around your home.
Gaseous pollutants are produced by cleaning products, paints, varnishes, and stoves that burn wood or gas. Tobacco smoke has both gaseous and particulate components.
Air purification systems are able to remove both the dust and smoke particles. Some are able to remove pollen, molds, and animal dander. However, there is no home device that is able to remove all pollutants from the air. One of the reasons is that the large particles like pollen and dust mites will settle on surfaces, which means that they do not get filtered, and make the filter and other surfaces dirty. There are a few air cleaners that contain activated charcoal, or other materials that are able to remove the gaseous pollutants. The issue with these air filters is that they only eliminate a limited amount of the pollutants, and many of them cost a lot of money. You also have to replace the filters that the machine uses more frequently.
UV air cleaners are the newest type of air cleaners and use ultraviolet to “kill germs”. Many times, this is not true, as many cleaners do not provide sufficient UV exposure to kill the germs. There are also some mold spores and bacteria that are UV-resistant, making this type of air cleaner system useless.
Health and Cleaning
If you are looking for an air cleaner that will prevent asthma or allergy attacks, you may be disappointed. There is some research that has found air cleaners make small improvements for people whose asthma attacks are triggered by pets. However, there aren’t any studies that fully prove if air cleaners help enough to say that people with asthma or allergies should use them. In many cases, the best bet is to prevent the pollution from coming in the first place, and take the other necessary steps to deal with the allergies.
Air cleaners can be useful in keeping a home clean, as they are able to catch most of the pollen, dust, molds, dust mites, and animal dander before it is able to land and collect on surfaces. This can be helpful for people with dust allergies, if the filter is cleaned, or replaced as the filter gets dirty. There still will be the need for dusting, but it will need to be done less often.
Two Basic Ways of Cleaning the Air
Mechanical air cleaners draw the air through a filter to capture the pollution. Many use a HEPA or high-efficiency particulate air filters to remove the allergens and dust particles. It is considered that HEPA filters are the best on the market since they are able to trap about 99.9 percent of all particles that are 0.3 microns in diameters or larger. The problem with HEPA filters is that many types of bacteria and other smaller particles are able to pass through the filter, and that’s not good news for allergy sufferers.
Electronic air cleaners include ionizers and electrostatic precipitators. Ionizers can cause the particles to be deposited on nearby surfaces as the air and some particles are forced out of the cleaner. Electrostatic precipitators charge the particles to make them stick to a metal plate. All the electronic air cleaners are able to create generate ozone as a by-product, and some models will do so intentionally and are called ozone generators. These models will claim that the ozone will effectively remove the odor-causing microorganisms and chemicals. The problem is that ozone in the levels that are produced is able to irritate the lungs, which can lead to worse respiratory problems. Ozone, when combined with some common household pollutants, is able to form dangerous reaction products. One of the most common reaction products is formaldehyde.
Basic Types of Air Cleaning Systems
Central filtration is an air cleaning system that is professionally installed and is best used in homes that have forced-air cooling and heating systems. Central filtration is the more expensive option, but you also have to repair and replace the filter less often. You can also use the less efficient, but less expensive option which is to replace your regular furnace filter with a filter that is high-efficiency and meant for cleaning the air.
Room air cleaners are also a more affordable option. There are both electronic, and mechanical style air cleaners. There are also portable air cleaning systems that combine the various technologies. Many of the most popular type portable air cleaning systems have fans which make them a more effective option, but some are noisy.
Most of the time, air cleaners are used by some people to keep their home clean. However, they generally can’t ensure that the air quality is going to be high quality.
Even though Florida has reasonably good air quality, many people could benefit from improved air quality indoors. There are various factors that could influence the air we breathe; this includes anything from pollutants to allergens. Below, we will explain common air problems in Florida and how a good air conditioning unit could contribute to the solution.
What Are the Problems with Florida Air Quality?
Photograph by Visit Florida
The air quality in Florida is reasonably good, but there can be some problems. Asthma sufferers and people susceptible to allergies are the main people who will experience problems in Florida since the state is somewhat susceptible to allergens in the air.
Florida tends to have some problems with smog as well, especially in South Florida during the air pollution season. Smog can cause some problems for asthma sufferers, even when the asthma sufferer stays indoors.
How Can Air Conditioning Improve Indoor Air Quality in Florida?
Photograph by Ambient HVAC
A good air conditioning system can have a serious influence on indoor quality. Air conditioners circulate and filter indoor air, which means it could eliminate a lot of the irritants, pollutants, and allergens that are present in indoor air.
To ensure your air conditioner system filters the air it pulls from inside the room, it is a good idea to ensure your air conditioner has an internal filter. Most air conditioners have internal filters these days, but some of the older air conditioners could be lacking one. If this is the case, it may be time for an upgrade.
Your air conditioning unit can clean up polluted air that comes in from the outdoors. However, a good filter can also remove some allergens that accumulate indoors as well; this includes dust and pet dander. If you live in a home with allergy sufferers or asthmatics, such a filtration system could be extremely beneficial.
How Often Does My Air Conditioner Need to Be Maintained to Ensure Good Air Quality
Photograph by Ambient Air
The installation of a good air conditioning system is the first step towards improved air quality indoors. Of course, the maintenance of your air conditioning system is important too, otherwise, the quality of the air delivered by your air conditioner could become impacted.
One of the main reasons to ensure regular maintenance is keeping your air conditioning unit at its peak performance. When your air conditioner is not maintained for a period of three years, for example, its effectiveness will reduce by 15%!
To ensure your air conditioner keeps filtering the air inside your home and provides you with top cooling functions, it is advised to have your air conditioner serviced at least once a year. Having your air conditioning serviced will ensure it keeps on functioning properly, but it will also keep your air conditioner free of harmful substances such as dust and oils on the inside.
Do you need your air conditioner serviced? Or do you want an air conditioner installed in your Florida home? For all these services and more, do not hesitate to contact the experts at Armstrong Air and heating!
Hurricane season has arrived and as we all begin to make preparations we must also consider the aftermath of the catastrophic event. The aftermath is when we all come together and where we find the most damage. We also understand that you may have your home damaged and that may also include your air conditioning units. Here is our safety guide to help you deal with your AC unit on the aftermath of a hurricane.
What Is A Hurricane
A Hurricane is a large storm system mainly found in the tropical areas. This storm comes with strong and violent circular winds. It is, therefore, critical that we try to learn some safety measures to take in our homes to prevent our family members from injuries. It is also crucial that you have some preventive measures that will protect the air conditioning unit and heating system in your home from damage. The following are some of the tips that will explain on how you will deal with your air conditioning after a hurricane.
Access the air conditioner for damage
Once the hurricane is over, and the power is back, you are advised not to start the major appliances. Turn them one by one to avoid damage of some sensitive equipment. Check the air conditioner before you restart it. Look for some obvious damage that would have been caused by windblown objects or falling trees. Check if the air conditioner was submerged with water and if the cooling fan and the vents are clear of debris. Also, ensure that all the electrical and refrigerant lines are intact and there are no damages from the burnt electrical smoke.
Common damages due to Debris or flooding
There are some obvious signs that you will see at the side of the house and on the unit itself that will help you know if it was submerged by floods. There will probably be some dirt stain left on the exterior walls. This will assist you to know the depth of the water and see if the air conditioner was in the water. You can also see some skim of mud on the conditioner. If the air conditioner was submerged, get a professional to inspect and clean it before turning it on. Dirt may prevent the internal systems to work properly and the cooling systems to lose efficiency. Electronic systems may short out when the unit is turned on. Call the service people before you turn the unit on if it was hit by trees or other objects blown by the wind
Check the rest of the central air system
If the water from the flood had entered the house, it is crucial that you check the air handler and the furnace. Get an HVAC contractor to inspect the unit if water had touched any of the two pieces of the equipment. Water may have caused corrosion on some important parts or shorted out electronics.
No obvious visible damage
When you ensure that the machine is fine, that is it has not been hit, submerged in water and free from debris; then you can turn it on a test it. Be on the watch out as you do this. Once the cooling system is on, do another though check up. If it sounds right to go near the unit and smell for any signs of smoke or electrical shorting. Check the unit regularly just to be sure that it is working perfectly.
It is advisable to get a professional check the on it if you have any doubts. Turn it off every time you are not in a position to monitor it. This is because of the immense power outages that may cause a fire when the power is back.
It is now time to think about getting your Ac unit tuned up – especially as the hotter weather begins to arrive very soon. Orlando is known for its humidity, so why would you not want to get ahead of the game and have an Ac System tuned to make sure that you will be optimized and ready to keep you cool before the hot weather drops in upon us. Here are some points that may help you consider and air conditioning tune-up.
Why You Should Tune Up Your Ac System
With all the chores that people have in their daily life, they may see it hard to add one more task. However, it is important that you put in your busy schedule some time to tune up your air conditioning. The following are some of the major reasons why you should tune up your Air Conditioning.
It is important for your AC to be energy efficient for it provides you with many benefits. One of the most common benefits is the reduction of the total energy bill you pay monthly. Tuning up your AC regularly ensures that the AC is running efficiently and thus reducing the energy bill. This is because it will not need to work extra hard to cool your home.
Extends the life of Unit
When making upgrades or investments to your home, then it is prudent that you take the steps necessary to protect it and ensure that the quality remains and it lasts for as long as possible. Air conditioning regular tune-ups will assist your AC to last longer and maintain its quality for a longer period of time and therefore maximizes the cost benefits.
Many of the manufacturers will require the homeowners to maintain the quality of their AC by having them checked regularly. The warranty might be voided if you did not make the extra effort of tuning up the AC. It is crucial that you look at the warranty carefully and understand your responsibilities for the AC maintenance.
Better for the environment
Tuning up the AC regularly reduces the amount of carbon footprint in the environment. Everyone in the modern days should try all their best to make decisions that are environmentally friendly and tuning up your air conditioning is one of them.
More consistent cooling
An AC that is not functioning properly will not be able to cool your home consistently. At times you will find that it is not able to maintain the cool temperature of your home consistently. At times you will find they there are different temperatures in the different rooms in your home. If you tune up the system, you will have control over the cooling power, and you will not have inconsistent cooling.
Regular HVAC tune-ups will help you detect small problems that may be in your air conditioning early enough and thus they will be taken care of early in advance. The remedy for the AC problem is given before it turns up to be a significant complication.
Prevent unexpected loss of cooling
Checking the air conditioning regularly will ensure that you will not be surprised that your air conditioning have stopped to work all over a sudden. The air conditioning will always be working effectively since problems could have been resolved during tuning up.
Better air quality
The main aim of having an air conditioning in your home is to ensure that you always have quality air to breathe. At times the air in the homes is harmful and toxic than the air that is outside. Tuning up the air conditioning ensures that you always have quality air. The filters are replaced during this time and thus ensure that only clean air gets into the house.
The compressor is the heart of your AC. If it breaks down, you may end up spending a lot of money to get it fixed. In some cases, the only option is to replace the entire unit.
So if you notice normal cabin temperature or loud noises coming from your AC compressor, it’s time to look closer. In case you notice anything unusual, call for professional help before it’s too late. Inspect the unit for the following clear signs of a failing AC compressor.
Your compressor is shaking and making a ticking noise when starting
A noisy air conditioning system is a sign of trouble. If the sound is coming from your compressor, it might be on its way to breaking down.
Before your compressor totally fails, it often makes a ticking or chattering noise when you start the unit. It indicates that your compressor finding it difficult to start. If left unattended, it could eventually damage expensive components and you may have to replace your compressor.
It’s easy to fix if you identify it in time and call a HVAC professional. It’s caused by a faulty electrical relay switch. Replacing the old worn-out switch with a new one would solve the problem and save your compressor.
The circuit breaker trips when your compressor starts
A faulty compressor can result in circuit breaker tripping. It’s a safety check to refuse supply to your compressor when it starts drawing too much power. It also means that your AC is overheating.
Sometimes, you might be tempted to simply reset the circuit breaker. It’s not the right way to handle this issue. When you reset the breaker, it doesn’t solve the problem that’s causing your compressor to overheat. Call a HVAC professional for detailed inspection of the unit and the electric circuit.
Your air conditioning system blows warm air
When your air conditioning system is blowing warm air instead of cold air, it’s time to check the condenser. Is it running? If so, it could be a fault in your compressor.
A weak or faulty compressor would fail to pump the refrigerator through the tubes. As a result, warm air would be blown from the indoor unit.
You can cure this lack of cooling power by calling professional HVAC help immediately. Since this problem could be due to a number of reasons, including refrigerator leak, don’t ignore it no matter what. You may end up with a broken compressor.
You hear loud rumbling noise coming from your AC compressor
If your AC compressor is making a loud rumbling or rattling noise, you should turn off the unit immediately. It could mean any of the following.
The distributor motor inside the compressor is loose
Something inside the compressor is thrashing around
When your compressor motor has come loose, calling a professional can help you solve the issue without allowing it to cause any further damage to the unit.
You notice moisture around your air conditioning system
If you have seen moisture on or around any part of your HVAC system, it could be due to a leakage. Puddles can be caused by escaping refrigerant. If the refrigerant leaks and you run the system without it, the compressor may break down.
Pay attention to any moisture and other signs as mentioned above. A pro HVAC can easily fix the refrigerant leakage, starting issues, and compressor motor problems to give you perfect cooling with noiseless operations. Your compressor will last longer and you won’t have to spend on expensive repairs.
Spring is right nearby, even though we are going into winter, therefore so is the season for landscaping and there is a greater risk of having overgrown landscape and rubbish and refuse around your ac unit.
When landscaping around the outside AC unit, there are a few things to bear in mind, to be sure that your unit remains safe, and works to its full capacity:
Clearance From The Condenser
Whatever you use to landscape around your AC unit, it’s crucial that you keep a standard clearance of 2-3 ft from the unit. Your unit needs a certain amount of readily distributed air to function effectively. Without circulating air, it’s most likely that your unit becomes more ineffective, and have to work harder to cool air. Hence keep virtually any landscaping 2-3 ft away, in case you intend on landscaping with trees, it should be trimmed to a minimum of 5 ft away from the unit.
Dirt and debris in the AC system are the most common reasons behind air conditioning issues in the US. If your AC condenser coil, part of the outdoor unit, becomes dirty or blocked, it can enhance the amount of energy your AC unit makes use of by as much as 30 %. That’s a fairly huge increase for something as easy as keeping the unit clean. Therefore it’s imperative that you think about landscaping alternatives that will avert dirt and debris from getting trapped in the unit.
Damage To Your Air Conditioning Unit
Another thing to consider is the fact many AC units are often damaged. Rocks, thrown up by lawnmowers, and accidental contact with weed whackers and lawnmowers will all harm your AC unit, and also result in an unnecessary maintenance. That’s why
Cover the ground around the unit
Wind and rain could cause sand and dirt to enter your condenser, making it filthy and forming the potential for clogs. Before you begin your landscape project, cover the area around the unit with mulch, gravel, or rocks. It will help to keep debris from entering the unit through bad weather.
Take into consideration extreme weather
If perhaps your home is new construction, you probably had a discussion about where you can put the condenser to start with – ideally that conversation began to take into consideration serious weather conditions. In that case, the condenser is more than likely protected from the toughest of the winds during a storm. If your house is older, it’s possible this conversation didn’t take place, which the unit is available to strong winds and flying particles. Should this be the circumstance, think about what weather conditions may be like before choosing a landscaping plan. You may benefit a lot more from a fence or even a portable remedy than from trees that could most likely fall and also cause damage.
Shading your A/C unit is a great idea
Keeping the condenser itself much cooler ensures that it won’t have to operate as hard to cool the air in your home. If your condenser is situated in a shady location already, fantastic! Otherwise, you ought to consider adding plants which are high enough to shade your system.
Fencing around the condenser
A terrific way to keep the AC unit and shield it simultaneously is always to install a small fence. As far as it’s put up at the right range from the unit (2-3 feet), it’s visually alluring and can safeguard the unit from kicked up rocks along with types of debris. You may even think about a lattice fence with a few climbing plants, so long as you make sure that the vegetation doesn’t stretch past the fence.
Be aware of how we mentioned one of the major cause of AC malfunction was dirt and debris? Surely, there’s an easy way to handle some of that dirt, when you set up a stone or metal border around the foundation of the unit. Filling the boundary with crushed rock or actually, the same material will help stop dirt and mud from splashing up in the rain. Because grass also can get trapped in the unit whenever it’s kicked up by wind or lawnmowers, a border guards your unit against that kind of debris as well.
If you choose to landscape with plants instead of a fence, you may think about plants that don’t get rid of their leaves in the winter. This would protect against any kind of excessive debris, can reduce your workload, and will keep your AC unit out of sight even in the winter. Moreover, evergreens are more feasible, when it comes to upkeep and cutting off. There are several of eye-catching choices that you can use to hide your outside AC unit.
Making use of lattice to develop a display around your outside air conditioner is appropriate because the openings stop the hot air flow blowing from the unit from being trapped. Whenever airflow to the system is impeded, the outside air conditioner can overheat. Dress it with a number of fancy post caps and greenery.