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Filan & Conner Plumbing
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Will you still be able to get Freon in a few years?  Prior to 2010, Freon was the standard refrigerant for AC systems.  The EPA has initiated a phase out because of its environmental concerns so it is not used in new equipment.  By 2020, Freon will not be used by the majority of active HVAC systems.  There is no indication that Freon will not be available prior to 2020, but all new equipment purchases should use an environmentally friendly coolant.  There are several options: R-422D is used in new units and can potentially replace Freon in existing systems.  R-407C is an even more efficient option.  R-410A is a refrigerant being used in new central air systems and window units and is referred to under various names.  Manufacturers are allowed to produce Freon for servicing old equipment for a few more years.  Maintenance and repairs to AC systems using Freon are currently not more expensive, but the limited supply is a concern.  The majority of older appliances will naturally run out their life expectancy over the next few years so new cooling equipment purchases should use an alternative coolant that is environmentally friendly.  Call us at (856) 667-3334 with any questions.
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Could your home benefit from zone control?  Zone control uses multiple thermostats to distribute heating or cooling where it is needed at any given time.  Zones are established in a home by floor or rooms or area.  You could be wasting money and energy by using resources on a floor or in an area that you don’t use or doesn’t need heating or cooling.  If you are considering using zones in your home, have a heating and cooling professional determine what is feasible and the best solution for your home based on the current ductwork and current needs.  Generally a practical solution is to install dampers on current ductwork, as well as, thermostats for each zone.  A more complete solution is an entirely separate system for different zones or floors.  Two smaller units can usually handle two zones in a residence.  Separate units for each zone are usually more efficient and require less ventilation, but remember that multiple units will require service and maintenance costs.  It is best to speak with an HVAC professional to determine what is best for you and your home.  Call us at 856-667-3334 to have your heating and cooling questions answered.
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Do you maintain your window unit air conditioners properly so they work efficiently and will last longer?  Window units need to be cleaned and maintained regularly.  The filter, evaporator and condenser coils should be cleaned every year before you start to use the window unit.  And if not removed from the window during the off season when not in use, they should be covered and protected with an air conditioner cover.  Also, be sure to purchase the right size unit for the room you are installing it in because a bigger unit will cost more upfront and cost more to run and may not be necessary for the room size.  Air quality can be poor from a unit that is too large because it may not remove excess moisture from the room.  Do your research regarding the best window unit for your space and take care of your purchase so that your space is cool, not humid and your comfort is cost effective.
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Did you recently turn on the AC and notice a bad smell? It could be mold. Humid homes with excessive moisture due to improper ventilation, air circulation or condensation problems can trigger mold and allergies. Humidity and dampness should be controlled in the home, throughout the ductwork, and at the AC unit.  Excessive condensation from the AC unit should drain properly so mildew is not forming. Check the drain line, make sure your filter is not wet, have proper ventilation and circulation in your home and keep everything clean including your AC unit and dust and allergens in the home.  Then you can breathe much easier and should never have a mildew smell from the AC unit.  Call Filan and Conner to check your AC system at 856-667-3334 if you notice a smell in your home when the air conditioner is running.
 
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Do I need to add Freon or Refrigerant to my AC unit before summer starts? 
 
In most cases, the answer is no.  If your AC system is not experiencing problems, then you should never “run out of” refrigerant.  That’s not how an AC system works.  Refrigerant is circulated through the system but not consumed so it’s not like a vehicle which consumes gas and eventually can run out of gas.  However, if you have a leak in your system, then you are losing refrigerant and the system is running low on refrigerant which is an issue.  The large copper line that is connected to your AC unit, sometimes located under foam insulation should be cold to the touch but not frozen.  If this is cold, then your system is probably not running low on refrigerant.  To actually find out how cold your AC unit is running and to make sure there isn't a leak, contact us at 856-667-3334 to schedule an inspection of your AC unit and we will hook up a temperature probe.  We are always happy to answer any questions about your AC system or to schedule an annual checkup.
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Your AC is not working, so is it the compressor?  A normal indicator of compressor issues is noise.  Any noise but the normal hum is an indication of an issue – it may be a hissing or clunking or rattling noise.  If the AC unit is not cooling well or is even blowing hot air, then the fans are working but the compressor is not cooling the refrigerant so air is passing through but is not cold.  A system that cools but is slow starting or has a sputter type start when it is turned on might have a compressor problem.  Some AC units do not turn on immediately at start up but they shouldn’t jerk or sputter or take a long time to start.  If you think there is an issue with your AC system, don’t wait to fix it.  Save time and money and stay cool by calling Filan and Conner at 856-667-3334. 
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Change your filters!  The easiest heating and cooling maintenance for a homeowner is to replace their filters on a regular basis.  Make this a routine task so that your equipment is running efficiently and the filters are not clogged and preventing air flow.  Most residential HVAC equipment use disposable filters, so find out your size and make that trip to the hardware store and buy what you need for a year or more so that you have them on hand to replace.  If you are confused about the best filters for your equipment or how long they should last, contact us at 856-667-3334. You may find it confusing since options can include disposable filters, washable filters, fiberglass filters, electrostatic filters, pleated/polyester filters, high-efficiency filters, etc.  We can recommend the best filters for your equipment per the manufacturer.
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Is your AC working fine but one room never seems to cool down?  The thermostat works fine but an area of the home is still warm and humid?  Have you ever had your air ducts checked?  You may need an HVAC professional to inspect the duct work and check for a leak.  If you do not have an airtight seal on an area of your ductwork it could be affecting one area of the house because the cool air is leaking before it reaches the destination.  The leaky air duct may be overworking your AC system and wasting energy too. Call us at (856) 667-3334 to measure the air tightness of your ductwork.  Our experience is that older ductwork can leak.  Your AC unit may work fine, but you may need to seal or replace leaky ductwork to run as efficiently as possible.  And sealing or replacing ductwork is much less expensive than replacing your AC unit.
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Want to save money installing an HVAC system in your home or replacing an existing HVAC system that is no longer efficient?  An efficient system will save you money but another money saving consideration is rebates!  Many manufacturers offer equipment incentives and rebates and offer flexible financing options too.  Residential incentive programs are available through New Jersey’s Clean Energy Program too based on the system’s efficiency levels.  Contact us at 856-667-3334 to discuss the best and most cost efficient option for your home. 
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Smart Thermostats are much more than your average programmable thermostat.  Smart thermostats track temp, humidity, energy use, and automatically adjust (called a smart response) based on what it knows you like from your previous use and history and other external factors so that it is as efficient as possible and your home is comfortable based on your needs.  It can even tell you to change your filter and senses motion so it knows when you are home.  And it can be controlled remotely through a computer or mobile application so if you decide to extend your vacation, you can change the settings so that you are not wasting energy while away. Smart thermostats are extremely user friendly and well designed too.  Thermostats have come a long way since the round dial thermostats of the 1950s.
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