3 ways to avoid CO poisoning

Carbon Monoxide also known as the Silent Killer is a tasteless, odourless and colourless gas which is produced when oil, gas, coal, wood or other fuels don't fully burn. In homes, the most common sources of CO leaks can be; furnaces, fireplaces, boilers, stoves, water heaters and other appliances that burn fuels. Every year, several casualties take place as a result of CO leaks in homes which are primarily a result of lack of maintenance and wrong HVAC practices. The threat always remains there since the appliances are there and are used almost throughout the year but it can be reduced. Below are some of the ways to avoid CO poisoning;

Placement of detector matters 

The placement of the CO detector can be a fateful action in saving or not saving your home from the danger of CO leak. While many homeowners understand the importance of installing a CO detector and get one installed as well, it is still unfortunate that accidents do take place. What could be the reason for that? The reason is the wrong placement of the detector. The location should be somewhere;
- Where the alarm can easily be heard
- The potential CO causing appliances are somewhere near; at least within 15 feet
- Where there is no door/window in the immediate vicinity of the alarm. The rapid flow of air near these places compromise the device's efficiency
- Where the CO detector doesn't receive direct sunlight since the false alarms occur in this case
So yes, in order to provide yourself and your home with foolproof safety, ensure the device is installed at the right location

Schedule HVAC maintenance 

They say, ''Prevention is better than cure''. Better to call a professional before an HVAC issue arises than to wait for the issue to arise and then call the tech for repair. Repairs are always costlier. But in addition, what makes maintenance the choice of the wise is that it keeps away the danger. Getting appliances maintained, replacing the CO detector's batteries and ensuring that the unit operates fine are some essential maintenance to do's that reduce the risks of CO leaks significantly.

Install fuel powered appliances away from living place 

Basements and garages are ideal places to install Furnace, Water Heaters, Boilers and other fuel-powered home or water heating appliances. They reduce the risk of direct interaction with the gas and the possibility of getting least affected even in the case of a CO leak.

With better care and a sense of responsibility regarding appliances that can cause potential harm is a promising solution to enjoy risk-free comfort for yourself and a risk-free environment for other fellow human beings.
Remember, CO leak can cause death and has the potential to cause bad fires.

What to do? 

1. Ensure that your CO detector is installed at the right place
2. Replace the batteries if they are old enough; over a year
3. Install a unit if you don't already have one installed


Get to know about Lennox X6672 Furnace Filter

The Furnace Filters help maintain a desirable indoor air quality by allowing the air to pass through them and hence trapping the contaminants. However, the ability of the filter to trap pollutant depends on its very efficiency. There are a number of different Furnace Filters available in the market today. Filters are categorised usually on the basis of the MERV rating. The higher the MERV rating the efficient the filter is. Also, some advanced filter models use very thick layers or have specially coated layers for extraordinary performance. Let's explore today, a Lennox Furnace filter model, its features, usefulness and compatibilities.   

Lennox X6672 - Features | Efficiency | Compatibility 

Lennox X6672 is a pleated furnace filter with a carbon coating on its surface. Measuring 16'' * 25'' *5'', this filter has a MERV rating of almost 16 MERV. Also, the carbon coating aids in removing contaminants from the air particularly odours. Designed especially for Lennox HCC16-28 air cleaner, it fits perfectly in that, however, it may as well be used in other air cleaners models. Lennox X6672 promises to eliminate the following air pollutants;
- Bacteria
- Viruses
- Pet Dander
- Formaldehyde
- Pesticides
- Smoke
- Mould and Spores
- Odours
Also, it ensures trapping up to 90% of those particles which are 0.1 microns in size and up to 95% of those particles which are 0.3 microns in size approximately. Collectively, this creates an overall extremely pure IAQ which is equivalent to the air purity level maintained in medical facilities like hospitals.

Lennox X6672 is fully compatible with Lennox HCC16-28 air cleaner. It should, therefore, be used with this very system. However, it may be used with other systems as well.

How often should Lennox X6672 be replaced? 

This is a replacement filter that needs a replacement roughly after 9-12 months unlike other filters of lesser efficiency that need replacement after 3-6 months. For optimal performance, the filter should be replaced before 12 months. The replacement period may change a bit depending on the pollution level and the use of the HVAC system.

How would in-time replacement of my Lennox X6672 benefit me? 

Replacing your system well in time will benefit you in multiple ways;
- In time replacement helps maintain a desirable indoor environment. In the case of dirty filters, the pollutants with the flow of air become part of it and continue to contaminate the air and the Furnace unit
- Dust & debris is one of the primary causes of Furnace failures. One of the benefits that the in time replacement of filters offer is that it protects the unit from frequent repairs and serious damages. Dirty filters burden the Furnace unit by forcing is to push harder to let the air through the clogged filters. This can result in tripping, motor failure or in worse cases, fire.

Winter is about to begin. Have you prepared yourself for the toasty winter? Are your heating elements ready? What was the last time you changed the Furnace filter? 
If you haven't yet performed Furnace maintenance, replaced filters or tuned your system for a perfect start, let our professionals help you with their Furnace masteries. 


Air Duct Filters & Allergies - Things you need to know

As the spring season starts, pollens become a headache for those with allergies particularly, the pollen allergy. In Summers, the situation is no different as the heat and humidity of summer season provide favourable circumstances for the growth of mould and mildew which once again become a source of allergies. The fall season comes with its own types of allergies and so is true for the winter when the home is totally packed and the stale air keeps circulating in the indoor. This means that allergies can appear any time of the year. In order to combat them, one of the most used and most suggested ways is the use of air duct filters. But the question is; do they really help? If yes, why do people still have to go through a lot of trouble as almost all homeowners have some kind of duct filters already installed? This blog will answer this question.

- Regular Air Filters - What they do and what they don't 

A lot of homeowners think that using regular air filters is a wonderful solution to keep dust and other pollutants away and make the indoor environment desirable. The truth is, these duct filters are designed to protect the system, not the homeowners. So what they do is they only trap large particles and dust that may harm the unit. A lot of pollutants especially the microscopic pollutants and allergens still pass through the filter and keep circulating in the indoor. So if your primary concern is treating allergies, you need special offer dunelm .

- Paper filters are unable to trap allergens 

You can't purchase the cheapest paper filter available and expect it to give the efficiency of a proper air cleaner. The ordinary paper filters let the allergens slip through them. Specially designed High-Efficiency Particulate (HEPA) Air Filters should be used in order to maintain a good indoor air quality. Else, the unit remains safe but the family members have to face IAQ related problems.

- HEPA Filters vary in efficiency 

There are several types of HEPA Filters divided on the value of their efficiency. The value ranges from 1-13 usually. Some very high-quality filters may have a higher value. These filters are efficient depending on their value so you can choose for your home and needs whatever MERV value filter you are in need of. But beware to not choose a very high rating filter if you have an outdated system. Not all filters are designed to suit all systems.

- More efficient filters mean more cleaning 

You may already have heard that a filter needs replacement once every three months. This does not apply to all filters. The better the filter, the more pollutants it will trap and the sooner it will get dirty. So with a better filter in use, be even more regular in cleaning/replacing it.

- There's more to the story 

Changing/replacing the filters or using high-efficiency filters is not the whole story; there's more to it. In order to maintain a desirable indoor environment and to keep the HVAC units operating with optimal efficiency, it is required to perform regular maintenance of the entire system. Only changing or upgrading filters won't help.

So the next time you are out for a filter purchase, make sure you know what to purchase and also practice all the right practices later on. All of this combined will create a better indoor air quality and will protect the system from losing its efficiency.


Evaporator Coil and Air Duct - Functions, Maintenance and Care

They say, ''With ranks come responsibilities''. They say it right but we dare to amend the saying for this post as ''With installations come responsibilities''. Homeowners are often delighted to install the latest technology appliances at home realising not that the installation is followed by proper and regular maintenance, which if they don't keep will put their system at stake while bringing home hefty energy and repair bills as well. So today, we are going to learn about Evaporator Coils and Air Duct functions and the maintenance and care they need.

Evaporator Coil

Evaporator Coil - Functions

The evaporator coil is a coil which is installed at the top of a Furnace. This is a situation in which a Furnace is used as a cooling agent as well. The evaporator coil gets filled with refrigerant/coolant as the Thermostat is set for air conditioning. As the air reaches over the evaporator coil, a heat exchange takes place and the hot air is cooled by the cold given by the evaporator coil. The cool air then returns towards the indoor.

Evaporator Coil - Maintenance and Care

So what kind of maintenance and care does the evaporator coil needs over time? Over time, the coil may get accumulated with dust and debris as the polluted air passes over it constantly. Secondly, in the summers, as the coil heats and cools constantly and as it is placed in dark and small places, the moisture that is created as a result of condensation may cause the production of mould and spores. Once again, cleaning comes under crucial care.

How would I know if my evaporator coil needs maintenance?

There are some signs that can help detect if the evaporator coil needs maintenance.

- If the air conditioning is not proper; slow cooling or lack of cooling
- If there's pooling beneath or around the Furnace

To avoid any such evaporator coil problems, be very regular about maintenance, choose reliable services for maintenance and do not postpone repairs when there's need for it.

Air Duct

Air Duct Functions

The air duct system allows a duct to reach almost every room so that it can take the cool/warm air through that pipeline to the desired area. There are registers or in other words, openings that let the cool air come in the room or that particular area. The air passes through the ductwork, reaches the rooms and the warm air returns from the return ducts back to the Furnace/Air Conditioner. This cycle repeats several times in a day.

Air Duct - Maintenance and Care

Just like we mentioned the accumulation of dust and debris over evaporator coils, the same takes place in the ductwork as well. The duct is an open and large space where not only dust and debris can stay but also the mites and insects, mould and spores etc can make a home. This necessitates the installation of quality air duct filters and also the cleaning of ductwork at least after once a year. Dirty ducts not only hinder the air flow but also contribute to lowering the indoor air quality. Other than dirtiness, the air ducts can also get damaged by developing holes and leaks or by getting their joints loose. 

How would I know if my Air Duct needs cleaning?

You can tell there's a problem with your air duct if;

- There are hot and cold spots in the home

- There is compromised cooling despite setting the Thermostat at a good temperature

- There's a lot of and unusual dust in the home

- Bloating energy bills

- Frequent tripping

Just like evaporator coil maintenance & care, the air ducts also need to be maintained and cared for in order to make the most of their efficiency. And once again, we recommend choosing professionals and professionals only. In the case of any repairs, do not delay repairs and do not try unnecessary DIY's.
Happy HVAC! Much more comfort!


Get to know about two-stage Air Conditioners

Air conditioning technology is rapidly improving. We have better and far more improved air conditioning than the air conditioning Mr Willis Carrier or the people of his era had enjoyed. Almost every year, Air Conditioning brands introduce new models with better technologies used in them.

Among the technology introduced in the last one decade is that of the two-stage Air Conditioner technology. You might have heard of it before, you may also be using a two-stage air conditioner at home already but still not be aware of how exactly it functions and what makes it different from a single stage Air Conditioner. So let's help you find out;

What exactly ''two stage'' means?

The term ''two stage'' refers to the speed at which the compressor operates. Two-stage AC is an AC whose compressor can operate at two different speeds, unlike a single stage AC whose speed cannot be changed and the compressor always operate at the highest possible speed.

So what difference does this make? Well, this makes a difference to your energy bills. Your home does not always need full-speed of the AC compressor. In less hot days, it is required to lower the temperature to only a few degrees which can be done at a low speed. To fulfil this purpose, two-stage Air Conditioners help in which the two different settings of the AC compressor speed help create desirable comfort without making energy bill fatty.

Two-stage Air Conditioner and the Thermostat setting

So as you turn the AC on and it is a mild summer day; not very hot, the Air Conditioner operates at full speed (in case of single-stage Air Conditioner) and runs until the temperature goes a little up than required. And trips once the temperature has reached. On hot summer days, single-stage again poses a problem as it operates constantly until the desired temperature is reached. Later on, trips and does not turn on back until the temperature rises a few degrees than what is set on the Thermostat. Both these cases create discomfort. But in the case of two-stage Air Conditioners, the temperature never goes too up or too down. Roughly a difference of 1, 2 degrees is observed which is negligible.

Two-stage Air Conditioners and Energy Bills

As said already, two-stage Air Conditioners make a massive change in the graph of energy bills and lower the graph by helping save hundreds of dollars. The compressor does not operate at full speed and does not trip frequently. Both of these factors contribute to energy saving. Another benefit of this two-stage technology is the quietness of operation. Many people find AC operational noises disturbing. For them, two-stage technology is a wonderful solution. Lighter speed, lighter noise.

Have you heard of two-stage Air Conditioners before or are you using a two-stage Air Conditioner unit at home? What difference have you observed in comfort level as well as in energy bills with the use of two-stage Air Conditioner? Share your experience that might benefit other homeowners.


Ventilation is important no matter what the season is

Hello Canadian homeowners!
So now that we are spending the summer season and half of it has already passed, there's one reminder that we would like to make. For some people, this might turn out to be a piece of totally new information. We are going to talk about ventilation. No matter which part of the country you live in, what kind of home comfort heating and cooling appliances you use and how much you spend on keeping yourself comfortable in the indoors, everything will come down to one thing and that is; sufficient ventilation. There is no way you can enjoy comfort when there's improper ventilation. Even using the most advanced heating and cooling appliances won't suffice when there's scarcity of fresh air. So what basically is ventilation and why it is so important?

Understanding ventilation and its importance

Ventilation refers to the introduction of fresh air into a space. Your home is a space, a cavity in which you live and there's a specific quantity of air that you breathe. But as you breathe and as you perform the everyday activities, that air gets polluted and as a result, the quality of the air becomes low. It does not remain fresh and healthy. This necessitates that fresh air is introduced into your home regularly in order to replace the stale and unhealthy air with fresher and healthier one. And where do we get that supply of air? Well, thanks to the plants and trees for working as fresh air suppliers. You can open the doors and windows and there you go, fresh air in abundance.

Would it still work if I don't ventilate my home?

Oh yes, its perfectly okay, as long as you are okay with getting frequently sick, breathing stale air, experiencing headaches & fevers, receiving bucks of mould, suffering from insomnia, respiratory tract issues, skin irritations and others. Man! There's no way to comfort without keeping ventilation into the equation. So no! It would not work if you've stale and dirty indoor air and you expect comfort to surround you.

The right ventilation practices

- Natural Ventilation

Natural ventilation is one of the easiest and affordable ways to freshen your indoor air. All you have to do is open your doors and windows at the seasonally suitable timings. In winters, make use of the daytime/afternoon when the sun is bright and up high. In summers, shift to the early morning hours and the night hours when there's a light breeze. Only an hour of this circulation would suffice to bring a pack of fresh air in and replace the odd air.

- Artificial Ventilation

The architectures of homes are complex these days and many times, ventilation is not thoroughly thought about during the construction of homes which makes the homes lack proper ventilation. Also, in the apartment set up and basement portions, natural ventilation hardly gets a share. As an alternative, artificial ventilation can be used and for that, Heat Recovery Ventilation Systems can work. Built to suffice for whole-home, the HRV systems suck the indoor air and push it out while introducing the fresh outdoor air into the home. In winters, the HRV system becomes helpful in another way and that is by warming the incoming air through the heat that it extracts from the home's outgoing air. This brings warmth and fresh air together reducing the use of heating appliances.

Quick Tip

If you lack proper ventilation and always feel a stale air as you take a deep breath, bringing some plants in the indoor can help a great deal in providing with fresh and oxygenated air while also combating the indoor air pollution.
And once again, before you go, we'd like to remind you; ventilation is important! For you as well as for your home. Live long, live well!


5 Smart mobile apps for smart HVAC techs

Isn't technology creating ease for us? A lot! Remember the times when our grandparents would go to telephone booths to make calls? The advent of landline and later the emergence of mobile phones made lives amazingly simple and easy. You can make calls from anywhere to anywhere in the world without having to worry about going outside or wait in front of the calling booth for a callback. Thanks to the mobile phone technology for this ease of one-click call and message. But that's not all! Using the latest smartphone technology, there's a lot more that can be done and this time thanks to the Google Apps.
You must be wondering why are you reading this all on an HVAC blog? Well, this blog is dedicated to exploring applications that can be useful for HVAC technicians.

Smart apps for Smart HVAC technicians 

Duct Calc Elite 

When installing a ductwork, there are tens of things that need to be considered. And even professionals can forget some figures sometimes so this application is here to help. Duct Calc Elite helps with sizing. In addition to providing standard and metric units for measurements, this app helps calculate velocity, flow rate, pressure drop and duct size with a few touches. Oh yes, tap tap tap and you're done with the most accurate duct sizing.

HVAC - Refrigerant PT - A/C 

Are you one such tech who doesn't want his learning to stop while he works? Great! We have an app to help you continue widening your HVAC knowledge. HVAC - Refrigerant PT - A/C. With complete data regarding temperature, pressure, physical properties and potential hazards of around 33 refrigerants, this app also allows personalisation of settings by allowing a shift between Fahrenheit and Celcius temperatures as well as 7 pressure measurements. Imagine how much it will increase your daily learning as you look at the given information several times on a daily basis.

HVAC Flashcards 

Are you on HVAC training? We want you to complete your training certification with distinction and here's an application to help you with that. HVAC Flashcards will help you prepare for your HVAC exam. Not only can you benefit from the already made cards, you can also make your own.

HVAC Buddy 

When your buddies can't go along with you to work, HVAC Buddy will. This app helps with diagnosis and inspection of HVAC appliances and refrigerant charge. In addition, it offers airflow and TEET calculation, detailed user manual and guidelines. Complex calculations now made easy! Ranked among the best HVAC apps, this app is a must-have if you are a DIY HVAC enthusiast or a professional HVAC tech.

ESC Mobile Tech 

Who has time to keep separate notepads for different needs and then maintain them all? Now you don't have to search your customer's contact information in your mobile contacts with a mental torture because you have already forgotten his name. And now you don't have to mess up with invoices and schedules. Keep all this record in one app. Invoices, quotes, schedules as well as service history, now can be arranged and found at one place in ESC Mobile Tech app.

Are you an HVAC tech? Which of these mobile applications do you use? And how useful have they been for you?