Are Air Conditioners Easier to Repair Than Heat Pumps?

September 17th, 2014 by Stephen Andrews

Air conditioners and heat pumps are often placed together in the same category. The reason for this is that an air conditioner is a type of heat pump, and a heat pump can do the same job as an air conditioner. Essentially, a heat pump is an air conditioner that can reverse the direction it moves heat and so work at both cooling and heating a home. The two systems work through an identical process of heat exchange using the cycling of refrigerant.

There are some differences mechanically between the two—heat pumps have more components to allow them to operate in different modes—but they are much more similar than they are dissimilar. Repairs for heat pumps and air conditioners are also similar.

Which one is tougher to repair? It depends on the kind of repair, although generally the repair types are the same. However, both are difficult if not impossible to repair without the proper training and tools. Unless you are a licensed HVAC specialist, you should never attempt to open up the cabinets of an AC or heat pump and try to manage repairs on your own. Always contact professionals: you can reach Cool Air Mechanical for heat pump and air conditioning repair in Kennesaw, GA any time of the day or night.

What Are the Differences Between Heat Pump and AC Repairs?

The major way that the two systems are different from each other is the presence of a component called the reversing valve. In a heat pump, the reversing valve sits on the refrigerant line where it exits from the compressor. Depending on whether the valve is “excited” (electrically charged) or not, it will direct the refrigerant either toward the indoor coil or the outdoor coil, thus determining whether the heat pump is in heating or cooling mode. Because an air conditioner is always in cooling mode, it does not have a reversing valve. If the valve in a heat pump malfunctions, it will need replacement.

Heat pumps also have a dual set of condensate pans that drain excess moisture, one each for the inside and the outside cabinets. Air conditioners only have one condensate drain, located on the indoors. This makes heat pumps a bit more complicated to maintain and to locate repair issues, but not significantly so.

Any skilled technician who can repair a heat pump can provide repairs for an air conditioner, so make sure that you turn to the professionals whatever system you have and whatever repairs you need. Contact Cool Air Mechanical when you need heat pump or air conditioning service in Kennesaw, GA.

3 Most Common Commercial HVAC Repairs

September 11th, 2014 by siteadmin

If you own or manage a commercial property, your clients, customers, and employees need a calm and comfortable place to conduct business. Your HVAC system helps do a lot of this work for you, so it’s important to call for repairs at the first sign of trouble. However, many people are too busy to notice right away when their commercial unit has run into problems. Instead, you may rely on your employees, customers, or even your bills, to let you know about the following problems that lead to commercial HVAC repair.

  • Insufficient heating or cooling: One of the most common reasons business owners call for HVAC repairs is if the people on the property notice limited heating or cooling in one or several areas of the building. This may be due to any number of issues within the HVAC system, including a frozen coil or thermostat troubles. When someone complains, it’s a sure sign that immediate repairs are needed to keep your business running smoothly.
  • Noises: Loud noises will also disrupt the normal flow of business, and these are a pretty good indicator that something is wrong. A damaged fan blade, for example, which may make a loud clanking sound, disrupts airflow and may eventually keep you from feeling any cool or warm air whatsoever. However, commercial units are often located on the roof, so you may not always hear indicators of problems. In this case, you may have to rely on other warning signs.
  • High Bills: One of these indicators is a particularly high energy bill. The bills for your commercial property are already fairly large, but a broken or dirty part can cause these to be even higher. Broken parts cause your air conditioning and heating system to run for longer periods of time, meaning it may consume a lot of energy even for a simple repair need.

When you need commercial HVAC repair in Duluth, no ordinary residential air conditioning service company will do. You need professional technicians with experience repairing large packaged units. Call the experts at Cool Air Mechanical at the first sign of trouble for all of your commercial HVAC repair needs.

Can I Do Water Heater Repairs on My Own?

September 10th, 2014 by siteadmin

Do-it-yourself projects are a great way to save a little money and learn a new life skill—in some situations. But when it comes to your home’s water heater, professional technicians simply have more experience dealing with water heater repair, and can better ensure everything gets back to normal as soon as possible. This is a large piece of equipment, so a poor repair job may lead to costly replacement. If you want to make a sweater, test out a chili recipe, or try your hand at flower arrangements, by all means, do it yourself. But here are the reasons you should not attempt to make any water heater repairs on your own.

The Problem May Not Be What You Think

Sometimes, a problem with your water heater may seem to be another problem entirely. A quick internet search can bring up dozens of sources for any repair need and you may choose the one that seems most logical. Noises from your tank? Simply flush out the tank to drain sediment rattling inside of the tank, right? Not necessarily. Noises from your tank may require a technician to check the pressure valve, or look for other problems within the pipes.

If you turn on your hot water and notice that the water is rust-colored, an internet search may inform you that you should replace the rusty anode rod. Or an ill-informed guide may tell you to drain your unit. However, rust colored water may indicate a more serious problem. You’ll want a professional to rule out storage tank corrosion before making any quick repairs.

Professionals Are Experienced and Are Equipped with the Right Tools for the Job

A professional simply has the right tools and know-how to take care of a water heater repair quickly and professionally. Without a trained eye to look at the problem, you simply cannot be certain you are taking the right course of action. For water heater repair in Roswell, trust one of the experts at Cool Air Mechanical. We’re open 24/7 for emergency repairs and have the right equipment to get your water heater running smoothly today! Call us today to schedule an appointment.

The Fashion of Wearing White and Labor Day

September 1st, 2014 by Stephen Andrews

You may have heard about the fashion faux pas of wearing white after Labor Day. In the present, this tradition is usually treated as old fashioned and a joke. Few people will criticize you for wearing white articles of clothing after the first Monday in September, or even take notice of it except to wonder why it was ever a major concern at all.

Where did this tradition of white clothing going out of fashion after Labor Day come from, and why did it fade away like colorful fabric washed in a hot load in the washing machine?

In general, white makes sense for the heat of summer. Light-colored clothing reflects away the radiant heat of the sun, instead of absorbing it the way dark colors do, so for thousands of years of human history people have preferred to wear white clothing during the hotter months.

However, the idea of white as strictly fashionable during the summer season only emerged in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries—the time when the very concept of “fashion” began to spread across the Western Hemisphere.

It was only the highest level of post-Civil War society in the U.S. that strict and often bizarre rules for fashion controlled whether someone was in with the “in” crowd. Compared to our ideas of what’s fashionable today, the Czars of Style in the 1880s were true despots. Things as trivial as sleeve length could determine whether a woman in high society—no matter her level of wealth—was fashionable or a pariah.

Wearing white during the only summer, when it was common for weddings and outdoor parties, was only of these restrictive society rules. When the U.S. government made Labor Day a federal holiday in 1894, the Fashion Czars gained a definite cut-off point for when wearing white was no longer “acceptable” in the upper echelons of wealthy society.

For many decades, this rule only applied to a small number of millionaire socialites in a few big cities, but in the 1950s it reached general fashion magazines that were read around the country and started to affect more people.

But time eventually broke apart this odd rule, and during the 1970s fashion became more individual. Some fashion legends, like Coco Chanel, also purposely rejected the restriction and wore white throughout the year. Today, the “no white after Labor Day rule” is little more than an amusing gag to tease friends, and almost nobody takes it seriously.

Whatever you choose to wear after Labor Day (and if it’s white, we won’t tease!), everyone here at Cool Air Mechanical hopes you have a happy end of the summer and great plans for the fall!

3 Common Signs That You Need Commercial HVAC Repair

August 28th, 2014 by Stephen Andrews

Problems with your commercial HVAC system can have a direct impact on your business; this is why it’s so important to attend to repairs right away. You don’t have to be an HVAC expert to spot the signs of developing problems, but it does help to know what to look for. Our Cool Air Mechanical technicians have put together a short list of common signs that can indicate the need for repair to your commercial HVAC system in Marietta.

3 Signs of Possible Problems

Following are 3 signs your commercial AC may be experiencing problems:

  • AC is blowing warm air – there are several problems that can cause your air conditioner to blow warm air, but the bottom line is that no matter what the reason, it needs to be fixed quickly. This is why it’s important to hire a technician who has experience with commercial HVAC systems.
  • Decrease in airflow – it won’t matter how cool your air is if you aren’t getting enough of it. A decrease in airflow can be the result of blockages, faulty ductwork or fan problems. Problems with airflow can put stress on your AC system, so the sooner it can be repaired, the better for you and your AC.
  • Excessive humidity – are you feeling extra moisture in your business space? Excess humidity can cause problems beyond discomfort, including damage from moisture and mold and mildew growth. No business owner wants to see products or merchandise ruined by excess humidity, so it’s best to call a professional as soon as possible.

Why It’s Important to Hire a Commercial Specialist

Commercial HVAC systems are large and complicated, especially when compared to residential systems. This is why it’s important to hire professionals with commercial HVAC repair experience.

Are you seeing the signs of possible problems with your commercial HVAC system? Cool Air Mechanical brings over four decades of commercial HVAC repair experience to Marietta business owners with every job. If you are seeing the signs of possible problems, call us today and schedule an appointment.

How to Install an Air Conditioner Quickly

August 27th, 2014 by siteadmin

Here in Decatur, GA, scheduling air conditioning installation is a necessity for the cooling season, but many homeowners want to install their new system themselves to make sure the job is completed quickly. Do-it-yourself projects are popular among homeowners looking to save some money and gain experience working with a new medium. While some home installation jobs may be suitable for beginners looking to gain experience in a new field, air conditioning installation is not a do-it-yourself job. The quickest way to ensure your air conditioner is installed correctly is by calling a skilled technician with years of experience.

The first reason you should allow a professional to install your air conditioner is that you may not choose the proper size. You must have the correct cooling capacity for your home in order to cool it completely, and a system that is too small will not be able to handle the job. However, your air conditioner will continue to run to attempt to meet your temperature needs, causing wear and tear to your system which will ultimately result in a shorter lifespan. On the other hand, a system that is too large will run for shorter periods of time. When a system turns on and off frequently, it is called “short cycling.” This damages the compressor, a major part of your air conditioner that is costly to replace.

Furthermore, air conditioners are complicated systems. You must be able to mount the units correctly, charge refrigerant (a chemical that can only be handled by licensed technicians), and ensure proper wiring, which is not only difficult but also unsafe when not done by a professional. Loose mounts, low refrigerant, and improper wiring may all lead to major problems like compressor damage.

When you call Cool Air Mechanical, our experts will ensure proper installation and sizing on your new AC. Furthermore, the job will move more quickly than if it were performed by someone without much experience. AC technicians know which questions to ask and the proper measurements to make to install your air conditioner as quickly as possible. If you need air conditioning installation in Decatur, GA, give us a call today!

How a Dirty Coil Affects Your Air Conditioner

August 20th, 2014 by Stephen Andrews

Central air conditioners in homes are usually “split systems”: they consist of an outside cabinet (the condenser) and an inside unit (the evaporator) which connect to each other through refrigerant and power lines. Both the evaporator and the condenser contain refrigerant coils that are essential for the process of heat exchange that makes the air conditioner work: moving heat from the inside of your home and then releasing it to the outside.

Both coils need to remain clean to effectively do their job. If either starts to develop a layer of grime or dust, it will impair the AC’s performance. For this reason, you should always have air conditioning maintenance done once a year; the technician will always check the coils to make sure they are clean, and detach and clean them if necessary.

If your AC is not cooling as well as it should, or if it’s time to schedule annual maintenance, contact Cool Air Mechanical. We offer 24-hour air conditioning repair in Duluth, GA and throughout the Greater Atlanta Area.

What Goes Wrong When a Coil Grows Dirty

The reason that the evaporator and condenser coils must remain clean is that any layer of dirt, dust, or grime will restrict the coil’s ability to either release or absorb heat, and this will unbalance the heat exchange process in the air conditioner. If the outdoor condensing coil cannot release sufficient heat from the hot refrigerant moving through it, the refrigerant will not be cool enough when it returns indoors to absorb heat.

The situation can get even worse with a dirty indoor coil. If the coil cannot absorb enough heat to warm up the refrigerant, the cold refrigerant will freeze the moisture forming along the coil. This ice will further restrict heat absorption, causing more ice to develop, eventually freezing over the entire coil and stopping heat exchange altogether. If you see ice developing along the indoor coil, call for repairs immediately: aside from a dirty coil, icing could also indicate leaking refrigerant.

To help prevent dust and dirt from reaching the coils, make sure to change the air filter indoors once a month during times when you regularly use the AC and keep the area around the outdoor cabinet clear of debris for a few feet.

Please note: you should not try to open up your air conditioner’s cabinets to access the coil yourself and clean it. To properly clean off a dirty coil requires removing the coil first, and this task you should leave to professionals. Call Cool Air Mechanical for the necessary air conditioning service in Duluth, GA you need to keep your AC running at its best: call at the first sign of trouble, any time of the day or night.

Does Rust on My Water Heater Mean It Needs to Be Replaced?

August 13th, 2014 by Stephen Andrews

A water heater puts metal in contact with water, and that’s a recipe for rust (as long as there is also oxygen). Rust is one of the principle enemies of water heaters, a conditioning you want to avoid at all costs. Fortunately, water heaters have precautions that will keep rust away for most of their lifespans.

But if rust does start to form on your water heater, or it appears in the hot water coming from your taps, is it an automatic farewell to the system? Do you need to immediately schedule a replacement?

Not necessarily. But you do need to schedule service immediately from a Duluth, GA water heater specialist to find out what’s wrong, if it can be repaired, and what your installation options are if it can’t. Call Cool Air Mechanical and talk to our water heating technicians as soon as you detect rust anywhere on your home’s water heater. We have technicians standing by, 24/7, for your convenience.

Rust and Your Water Heater

The component that keeps a water heater from rusting is the anode rod, sometimes called the sacrificial anode rod because it draws corrosion to itself so that it won’t enter the water heater tank, effectively “sacrificing” itself to prevent rust. But once the anode rod completely rusts through, it will no longer protect the water tank. This is why it’s crucial to schedule regular maintenance for the water heater; the technician will know when the anode rod needs to be replaced.

If your heater is relatively young (less than halfway to its expected lifespan), then the first appearance of rust is probably because of an anode rod that needs replacement. If you act quickly enough, a repair technician can often save the system from further damage.

Rust and corrosion can also start because of excess sediment inside the tank, so make sure that you have the tanked flushed on a regular basis (usually during maintenance) to avoid this from occurring.

If you have an older water heater that is at, near, or beyond its manufacturer’s estimated lifespan, then the appearance of rust, especially along the bottom of the water heater, is a good indication that it is time for a replacement. Call a specialist for an informed opinion, and then let the specialist help you select a new unit and arrange for skilled installation.

Cool Air Mechanical offers full services for your water heater in Duluth, GA. We handle installations, maintenance, and any type of repair you may need so that you don’t lose your steady supply of hot water.

How to Tell You Need Commercial HVAC Repair

August 12th, 2014 by siteadmin

If you manage a commercial property, you may be too busy to notice when your HVAC system needs repair. Of course, the easiest way to know whether repairs are necessary is if you hear complaints from your tenants, customers, or employees. But it’s important to catch repair needs before your system stops working in order to prevent further damage to your system or a costly replacement.

When you need commercial HVAC repair, the first step is calling a professional technician. But how do you know when it’s time to call? While any problem should be taken seriously, here are 3 signs that you need commercial HVAC repair in Decatur today.

Reduced Cooling and Heating

Commercial HVAC systems are designed and sized to cool or heat large spaces with many occupants. Reduced heating or cooling may mean that your system is the improper size, the compressor is damaged, there is not enough refrigerant, or any number of problems that may be somewhat serious. Alternatively, you may need thermostat replacement, so it’s best to have a technician locate the problem.

Uneven Temperatures

If some areas of the building are warm while others are cool, you’re bound to hear about it from the people in your building. Uneven temperatures may indicate problems with the ducts, zone control system, fans, or the thermostat.

High Bills

A good indicator that you have a hidden commercial HVAC repair need is unusually high bills. Heating and cooling a commercial property can be costly, so high bills are often expected. But when your bills spike without warning, there’s probably a part that needs repair. Calling for repair may help lower your bills, while calling for maintenance once a year can prevent such problems from occurring in the future.

When you need commercial HVAC repair, you should make sure you contact an experienced commercial HVAC technician. Commercial systems are much larger than conventional ones, and an inexperienced technician may be unable to locate repair needs, or the technician may take longer to assess and fix problems. Qualified technicians are trained on commercial HVAC systems for all repair and maintenance needs. Call Cool Air Mechanical today for commercial HVAC repair in Decatur.

How Air Conditioning Repair Can Improve Efficiency

August 6th, 2014 by siteadmin

For most homeowners, it’s important to save money wherever possible. When your AC runs into problems, you may be tempted to put off calling for air conditioning repair to save some money until the problem seems more serious. But delaying repair can cause your system to break down sooner than you’d expect. Furthermore, your damaged system will most likely add to your energy bills. Calling for air conditioning repair at the first sign of trouble can actually improve efficiency.

If your system has trouble starting up, or if you hear unusual noises from your indoor or outdoor unit, notice limited cooling, or see ice along the evaporator coil of your unit, you may be tempted to wait to schedule repairs. Sometimes, problems don’t seem urgent enough to interrupt your daily life with a service call. However, you may spend a lot more money in cooling costs than is necessary if your air conditioner needs repair.

Often, when one component of your AC system doesn’t work quite the way it should, the other components must work harder to compensate. Your system must run for a longer time period to get your home to the correct temperature. Because of this, you end up paying more for problems such as these.

  • Frozen Coil: The indoor coil is responsible for helping refrigerant to absorb heat from your home. It may become frozen if there is not enough airflow across the coil for evaporation to occur. When the coil is blocked, it cannot efficiently remove heat, which means it takes much longer to cool your home.
  • Faulty Fan Motor: The indoor and outdoor fan help to distribute air throughout the home and release heat outdoors. A faulty fan motor can prevent your home from ever reaching the correct temperature, reducing efficiency significantly.
  • Low Refrigerant: Refrigerant is vital to your air conditioner and, without the proper charge, your system is unable to efficiently remove heat from your home, which means your air conditioner runs for longer time periods.

When you call Cool Air Mechanical for air conditioning service in Dunwoody, GA, you may see lower cooling costs in the upcoming months. Call us today!