Crane Electric Fireplace - Features & Safety

Canadian homeowners are using a number of different kinds of home heating appliances. Among them is Space Heaters. Whether or not homeowners use space heaters as their primary appliance, they do use it as a secondary heating appliance. This is why in almost every other home, there's a space heater ready as a backup heating solution. To meet the needs, Crane has launched Electric Fireplace Heaters that work both as Space Heaters and as appealing Fireplace. This can be especially fascinating for homeowners who love Fireplaces but don't like the mess that the conventional Fireplaces cause. Get the glow of an actual Fireplace with this Crance Electric Fireplace model.

Features of Crane Electric Fireplace

- It's a 7.5 inches wide and 15 inches tall unit available in white, red and black finishes

- The units are portable and easily held with the help of a handle on the top

- To suffice for the craving of the ambient glow of a conventional fireplace, the ember gives off a very natural glow. The interesting feature, however, is that they give glow even when they don't give heat

- There's an auto-shut off option which prevents the unit from overheating

- One of the features of this portable Electric Fireplace is the quiet operation which is the most wanted feature for many people

- Have kids at home? They are safe to use! The ceramic heating mechanism gives off warmth but keeps the surface cool. It won't cause burns when touched

- These units offered by Crane are perfectly suitable for medium-sized rooms

- Worried about electricity bills? Don't panic. The ceramic coil used in this Electric Fireplace takes less energy than the (average) household bulb

- To offer multiple heating ranges, there are two settings; one for 750 watts, there other 1500 watts.

Space Heater Precautions

With pros come some cons. While this unit is appealing, affordable and can be used as the primary heating solution, there are some cares that need to be taken when using this Electric Fireplace Heater or any other Space Heaters:

- Keep the area of around 3 feet clear around the unit

- Do not allow children or pets near the units when it is operational or simply plugged-on. The Crane unit although offers cool-to-touch mechanism, it still has the tendency to give current

- Never use any kind of Space Heater when unattended

- Place the unit on even surfaces. Placement on uneven surfaces can result in a tip over and causing a fire

- It is risky to use the unit using extension wires. Using them this way results in frequent overheating

Tired of old heating methods and looking for something new? Want help with home comfortable heating essentials or need professional suggestions regarding upgrading your heating essentials? Thinking to take a second opinion before finalising an HVAC purchase? We can help!

Furnace AC Direct has been serving in the field of HVAC for several years. Our professionals are certified and reliable. But the good thing is, you can ask for a quick quote for any HVAC purchase or service free of cost. Also, by subscribing to one of our plans, you can also enjoy discounted repair & maintenance as well as priority services anytime you need help.

So how are you heating your home this winter?


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?


Inspect AC repairs in time

This summer, before your Air Conditioner breaks down randomly on a very hot afternoon, inspect the necessary repairs in time. There are signs and symptoms that you can carefully look for in order to make sure whether or not your system is in need of repair. But before that; here's a quick reminder;
Many homeowners prefer to delay repairs in the hope to save some money. Remember that delaying of repairs never helps save money, it rather keeps multiplying the expense that you'll have to make when a worsened repair will be fixed. So if you are one such homeowner who has been in a habit of delaying repairs, don't continue this practice any further. Instead, look for repair needs yourself and fix them as soon as possible either with a DIY or with the help of a professional.
Here are some signs for you to inspect AC repairs;

- Compromised cooling 

You spend a whole season with your AC and you can easily tell how long does your AC take to cool the indoor. You can also tell if the cooling is not sufficient at the temperature you always set or when the cooling goes away all too quickly. This is one quick sign of AC needing repair. This could be due to leaking ducts, damaged refrigerant line or some issue with the compressor.
Please note that it is normal for the AC system to not give sufficient cooling on extremely hot days. But if the situation persists in normal temperature, you need to check where the system is ailing.

- Air flow problem  

There are two cases;
1. The airflow from all the vents is unusually light. This could suggest your unit's compressor has a problem
2. The other case is in which the air flow is different from different vents. Some rooms might be getting normally or overly cool while others getting partial or no air flow at all. This indicates a problem with the ductwork. Also, don't forget checking filters before giving a shout out to the repair tech; it is possible that your filters have problems and not the ductwork.

-Unnecessary moisture 

It is normal to have little moisture when the system is running. If small water pools are created close to the AC unit, it suggests the drain tube is blocked or broken.
Also, if the unit has icing on the refrigerant tubes, the refrigerant could be leaking. Call a professional to resolve this particular matter since this would require refilling of the refrigerant as well.

- Unusual sounds 

Banging, rattling, grinding, grating kind of sounds isn't a good sign. They usually indicate something wrong inside the unit. If you don't recognise where the sounds are coming from, better not try any DIY and contact a professional instead.

- Unusual odours 

It is normal if your system gives a stale and dusty odour when it is turned on after a whole long season. But pungent and foul smells aren't normal. They indicate burning of wire insulation. On the other hand, musty odours indicate the presence of mould in the unit or in the ductwork.

Bottom Line 

There are some repairs that are simple and can be fixed by homeowners all by themselves. But some repairs require professional assistance particularly the ones that are related to the system's inner components. But inspection is the first thing. As a homeowner, you should be able to inspect repairs well in time in order to avoid costly expenses of replacement.


Purchasing a new home? Call an HVAC specialist for inspection!

Whether you are purchasing a new home or renting one, a home inspection is part of the purchase process. Every homeowner as he invests in such big deals need to make sure his home would make him feel comfortable and for this, it is important that the home is thoroughly inspected. Since common homeowners are not specialists, they can't perform the inspection on their own and it is for this reason that we have home inspectors. But did you know, oftentimes home inspectors are not specialists enough for HVAC inspection? When they perform inspection, they focus on overall medium to serious level home problems. For HVAC inspection, only a turn on/off is usually checked to see if the Air Conditioner and Furnace etc is operational. Usually, nothing more. And this does not end here. Most home inspectors are not certified and at many places, certification is not a legal requirement either. So, you never get to know how professional is the inspector and his inspection report. 

Keeping all the above-mentioned telltale in mind, another point to consider this fact;
Home inspectors often have a direct or indirect relationship with the profit in the buying/selling process. So it is never known how dishonest they might actually act in order to save them the deal and thus declare the home ''All Okay!''. Since HAVC inspection is a serious concern and taking it non seriously can cost you hundreds of dollars if any of your units stop working right after few months/weeks of purchasing the home, it is important to make some wise investment on HVAC inspection from a professional HVAC tech. We recommend not to solely rely on home inspector for HVAC inspection. 

Benefits of HVAC inspection through the third party 

You can enjoy several benefits as a result of proper and professional third-party HVAC inspection. Find some below; 
- Getting to know HVAC system flaws, you can have a discounted purchase price 
- Negotiations can be made for system replacement 
- Fixing the flaws in time lowers the possibility of high energy bills 
- Making sure the system is all well reduces risks of breakdowns and gives safer and durable operation 

What do specialised HVAC techs inspect?

Unlike the home inspectors, the specialised third-party HVAC techs inspect the following; 

- Ductwork: The tech will inspect the entire ductwork for leaks, cracks and other damages
- Refrigerant Inspection: Insufficient or leaking refrigerant will become an additional cost for you if it is not identified at the time of purchase. The HVAC tech, therefore, sees if the system has sufficient refrigerant and is free of refrigerant leaks. Also, the system is checked for what refrigerant type it is operating on. R-22 and some others have been banned. Ask the seller to either pay for the retrofit or have it done before making the sale final 
- System maintenance: And here's an important one. A specialised tech will give you an insight into how maintained the system has been kept. Proper maintenance means longer lifetime while irregular or no maintenance would mean compromised lifetime and efficiency 
- Leaks and Insulation: A third party professional HVAC tech is also capable of telling you of the major house leaks and the necessary insulation to be done 
- Additional installations: An HVAC inspector can tell you about the additional appliances that need to be installed in your new home keeping the environmental conditions under consideration while also the home's architecture and the peculiar HVAC needs of the prospective homeowners. For example, people with breathing problems of sensitivities would most probably require an Air Filtration system if it has not been installed already. You can manage to make an estimate of purchase for new appliances before finalising the purchase of the home, helping you keeping yourself within your budget range 

So, now you know what went wrong at the time of last home purchase? The next time, don't forget to call a pro for the pro's work. HVAC inspector!


Carbon Monoxide Safety Tips

Carbon Monoxide, the silent killer as you might already be aware of is a gas that is used in heating/cooling appliances, engines, stoves, generators and other everyday appliances. While it is a useful gas when used to run appliances, it turns out to be fatal as is inhaled by humans or animals. Nonetheless, the presence of the Carbon Monoxide around us and in our homes necessitates some safety measures that could save us from the dangers that it carries. Here we mention some CO safety tips and tricks and at the end a brief mention of the symptoms of CO poisoning.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

CO Safety - Tips & Tricks

* The best ever safety tip is to have a maintenance and safety check of heating appliances; Furnace, Boiler, Water Heater etc as well as CO and smoke detectors in order to make sure they are posing no danger

* Since CO is produced by engines as well, do not run them in enclosed rooms. Opening the doors and windows won't suffice. Make sure the area is all open around the engine. For the engines that are meant to run constantly on the outside or corner of the home, keep an eye on them as the CO leak, if it occurs, would find its way into the home

* In winters, don't perform the warming of the car action in the garage. Start the car and quickly drive out to warm the engine outside in open air

* Any seals and blockages in the flues, chimneys and fireplaces can cause the carbon monoxide to spread all around. If you can't make sure your appliances and heating elements are all well, call a professional before starting using them in winter

* Here's an important one; Dirty Filters hinder the air flow that further burdens the system and results in CO leaks. Have your filters cleaned/replaced every 3-6 months

* Your home need to have ventilation whatsoever. So, if you have a well insulated home, make sure you also have a ventilation system installed

* The Carbon Monoxide Alarms need to be installed in every portion of home separately and in the middle of every sleeping area. While you can sense the leak when awake, it is difficult and often times too late to sense it when you are asleep

* Different CO detectors offer different functions and different manuals. Always read the user manual in order to make sure the right installation and follow the right cares

* Once you're done with installing the unit, don't forget to keep it maintained. The maintenance is keeping its outside clean and changing the batteries as prescribed by the manufacturer

* The snow and dust build-up on vents is a leading cause of CO leaks. For dust, make it part of the maintenance routine to clean the vents and surrounding area. But perform the cleaning specifically after snow storms

* When there's a barbeque plan, celebrate the grilling enjoyment outside. Charcoal and gas grills produce CO

* It is also important to make sure the alarm of CO is audible and everyone at home recognises the alarm while it is also important that homeowners know about the emergency to-do's

Now that the tips and tricks are over, we are mentioning some symptoms of CO poisoning.

Symptoms of CO poisoning
3 early symptoms
* Headache
* Nausea
* Dizziness

3 worsening symptoms
* Hallucination
* Blurring of vision
* Increasing heart rate

3 absolute danger symptoms
* Chest pain
* Loss of consciousness
* Coma  

For all of these symptoms, try to take the victim in the open fresh air and to the hospital as quickly as possible. Do not try any supposed DIY remedies. CO poisoning is fatal and causes death if action is not taken in time.
Take care of yourself and family. Follow the safety tips and tricks to enjoy all seasons without coming at a risk of deadly dangers.


Make Winter the time to strengthen relationships

While it might seem odd to find a relationship blog on an HVAC related blog, the truth is; there is a link between the two. And even if there’s not, let’s create one. We are not only concerned about your outer comfort, we are also concerned about you inner comfort that is for the majority of the times affected by relationships directly or indirectly. We are HVAC professionals secondly and yours truly friends firstly. So here we are; sharing with you today how you can utilize the extreme winter season in order to strengthen relationship issues, particularly of the familial relationships. 

Make winter the season to love more express more

There’s no denying the fact that technology has offered us with a hundred of benefits and has contributed significantly in making our lives comfortable but on the other hand, it is also true that the same technological advancement ; (or maybe its wrong use) has adversely affected human relationships. There was a time when family members would sit together to talk, communicate regarding important matters, contribute to resolving familial issues and much more. And today we are in the times of extremely busy schedule and intense hustle & bustle where even the family members don’t have time for one another. And even when they have; they are busy with their smart devices instead of getting busy with one other. One of the basic human needs according to psychologist Abraham Maslow is the relationship bond of a human with a human. While we do have so many acquaintances today; there are only a few or in some cases none, who we could really consider the people of solace and reliability just because the bonds are weak. 

If you have been having a hard time making an understanding with your spouse, are struggling with having quality time with your children or haven’t served your home in years like you once used to, peak winters is the time when you can fix all these relationship problems that bother you throughout the year. Since the extreme escalation of winters bound people to stay at homes, this homebound time can be used wonderfully. Here are a few tips that we would like you to consider;

  1. If you are an elder, reduce your use of smart devices and instead give time to your children by sitting with them, visiting their rooms, making discussions about their life affairs.
  2. It would be effective to initiate activities that would involve all members or at least the one you need to strengthen your bond with. It could be a game, some random cooking together, watching a movie or exploring old family photos.
  3. While the above mentioned is a general suggestion, the particular suggestion in order to resolve familial relationship matters is to give yourself time and contemplate on how would you repair the bond. Then use this homebound time to actually discuss the matter with the other person. Be careful to not end up worsening the matter as you have no place to go after a hot debate; it’s chilling cold outside. 
  4. Winters can be a wonderful time to learn new habits. As the schedules change altogether, some useful practices can be adopted that will keep the familial bonds stronger even after the winters have passed. For example; playing an indoor sport together at a particular time could be adopted as a habit. This will increase the time that the members will spend together while also will provide the family members with some memorable time to spend together. 
  5. Don’t forget to express love to your family. A kiss, a hug can do wonders. Winter is expressive so let it make you expressive as well.

Some other winter to do’s that will make your winters soulful

  1. Relationships are not limited to familial relationships. Extreme winter can be used to mend some long lost relationships with friends or relatives. 
  2. Think of the people you haven’t talked you in years. Make them a call 
  3. Post and home delivery services remain available even in extreme winters although with some delay. Think of some people you should express your love to; parents, grandparents, an old friend etc. Send them a gift, a handwritten card, a hand cooked dish, a hand-sewn sweater or whatever you think will please them the most
  4. Don’t forget to make the beautiful season of winter, the season of making the much-needed apologies. A sorry call, message or email will make your heart light enough to enjoy the season even more

Winter is beautiful but it does not remain beautiful when you have a sad heart and a torn soul. Make this season of Furnaces and Fireplaces the season to lit the fire of love and forgiveness by strengthening the relationships bonds. And in doing so; keep your family your priority. The best of all times is the time well spent with family.
A very happy winter!