Freshen Up Your Air Conditioner

Freshen Up Your Air Conditioner

April is chugging along and as temperatures continue to rise, the hum of air conditioning units will begin to sing louder as the Florida summer gets closer and closer. Since we’re smack dab in the middle of spring cleaning season, it would be a prudent part of your plan to get ready for summer to make sure your home’s air conditioning system is also freshened up for the extensive use it will see in the coming months. Here’s a helpful list of things to check up and check out to make sure you have a nice, cool season ahead of you this year.

Give your unit room to breathe. A clean, well kept area outside of your home around your condenser will help the machine run properly. Make sure to clean any debris around your unit that might have accumulated over fall and winter. Trim back overgrown shrubbery and pull any unruly weeds from around the perimeter as well.

Check your drain line. Another thing to be mindful of when preparing your air conditioning system for summer is maintaining a clean drain line. Take a look at the drain pan, located inside the air handler. Using a flashlight (if necessary), check the opening of the condensation drain line for anything that would clog the line. Next, clean the drain pan out, noting any condensation in the pan. If you find condensation in the pan, it is possible that your line is clogged. You can pour a cup of bleach in the access opening of the drain line to help eradicate any mold, mildew or algae that has formed in the line.

Restock your filter cache. The monthly filter change is one of the easiest (and also most forgotten) things you can do to ensure proper maintenance and operation of your home air conditioning system. It can be as easy as setting a monthly reminder in your phone, or marking your calendar. Your air conditioning system circulates a tremendous volume of air each day, and with that air comes dust, pollen and pet dander. Over time, these particles can accumulate in the ducts and restrict air flow, and also cause your unit to work harder than it needs to — which can lead to costly repairs if left unchecked.

We’ve given you a few things to add to your spring cleaning checklist. Come back next week for a few more money-saving tips on your air conditioning maintenance, or give us a call and we can schedule an HVAC professional to help you in person!

Knocking Allergens out of Your Home

Knocking Allergens out of Your Home

Spring is in full swing and around here, that means it’s peak allergy season. Everytime you step outside, you can see the evidence that Mother Nature is waking up from her winter nap by the yellow sheen of pollen that coats most every vehicle on the block. Pet fur is being shed by the pound and with all the dust getting kicked up cleaning out the house it’s a veritable category 5 sneeze-a-caine waiting to explode at any minute!

Ok, maybe we are being slightly melodramatic here, but it is that time of year where allergies are wreaking havoc on many of us, so your friends at Bold City Heating and Air are here to share a few tips with you. Here are some ways you can pack an extra punch when it comes to knocking allergens out of your home this season.

Beating back allergies starts from the ground up. Properly cleaning your floors is a critical battleground in the war against allergens. Between pets, kids, and your own two feet the floor of your home is a haven for all the little things that can cause problems for your health. Dirt, dust, pollen and pet dander have ample places to accumulate, especially if you have carpet. Weekly vacuuming and dusting are a big help. Look for a vacuum with a HEPA filter. Annual carpet shampooing can help defend against build-up of allergens as well. Keeping your pets clean and well-groomed is beneficial, too.

Dust with technique and breathe easier. Remember that movie “The Karate Kid”? An older janitor teaches a young man about life through karate…..and chores. Now these dusting tips won’t help you become a black belt in karate, but they will help you kick some extra dust out of your dojo. Use a good, absorbent cloth that will not just move dust particles around, but actually trap them and remove them from surfaces. Another great tip is to turn your thermostat to ON instead of AUTO while you dust. This will help trap the dust that doesn’t end up in your cloth in your filtration system instead of just getting blown all through the house. Don’t forget to turn it back to auto when you’re done!

Call on your friends. Speaking of your AC, don’t hesitate to call on your trusted professionals to make sure your HVAC system is cleaned and well-maintained annually. This will help keep potential airborne particles from giving you and your families fits when Spring brings the sneezes and stuffy noses. Bold City Heating and Air is your team to call on when your ready to tackle those Spring cleaning duties the right way. We will ensure your HVAC system is running smooth and running clean, and that will keep you and your family stay cooler this year.

Earth is calling, are you ready to answer?

Earth is calling, are you ready to answer?

With Earth Day coming up this month, now is the perfect time to reevaluate your HVAC system to look for ways to save energy, making your home as efficient as possible. In most cases, heating and cooling components are the most substantial energy inputs for most residences, so it’s an area where cutting back can have a significant impact not only on your energy bill, but also our planet’s reliance on fossil fuels.

Get ready for Earth Day with these planet friendly tips for your HVAC system:

Tune it up: It’s important to service your air conditioning unit when the seasons change, so you know that everything is working at peak efficiency. No one wants to waste energy, especially due to preventable causes such as system malfunction, duct obstruction or simply a dirty filter.

Climate control: Having a set, energy efficient temperature in your home can help minimize your consumption, and reduce your impact on climate change. So, if you can take the heat of an indoor temperature of 78 degrees or higher, not only will you save money but you will also reduce your energy usage. If you have a whole house fan, opening up the house in the mornings and turning on ceiling fans can also bring the temperature down, without using your AC. Smart thermostats are also a great way to manage your energy consumption – and it takes all the thinking out of home temperature management. These devices have been shown to shave hundreds of dollars off annual energy bills.

Fortify the homefront: Heating and cooling does little good if you can’t keep it inside your house! Most homes that lack proper insulation usually lose their hard earned indoor climate through the roof, walls or windows. So, if you’re wondering whether your home is properly insulated, check with the experts. A quick spray insulation could be an inexpensive way to beef up your indoor climate retention, saving you money and sweat. Add in a quick sweep to check any cracks around windows or doors, to seal up any pesky leaks with some weather stripping, for good measure.

Tricks for “passive cooling”: When the summer sun starts to heat up your home, you can reduce the load on your air conditioner with some strategic shading. Try closing the curtains over sunny windows during the day to turn the heat away, then opening the windows at night so the cooler air can help draw down the temperature in your house.

For more helpful advice on HVAC seasonal transitions, have one of our professionals perform an energy audit in order to know exactly where changes could be beneficial to your home and for the planet. Call Bold City Heating & Air for more energy-saving tips or visit our AC services page here to see how we can help. You can also call us anytime at (904) 299-8684.

The Debate Is Over: Science Has Officially Found the Perfect Temperature.

The Debate Is Over: Science Has Officially Found the Perfect Temperature.

Researchers from Helsinki University of Technology, in partnership with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, devoted their time, smarts and money to determine whether indoor temperature affects productivity; and if so, how? We found this information fascinating and clearly relevant to our line of work, so we would like to share with you the study’s findings and at which temperature you can be most effective!

The study begins by explaining that temperature is one of the fundamental characteristics of our indoor environment. Based on personal experience, we have all had different reactions to extreme heat or cold – too much heat makes you sweat, and too much cold makes you shiver. Either way, you’re left feeling uncomfortable and therefore, less productive than you could be.

So, without further ado, here’s the good stuff. The findings showed that temperature did indeed have an impact on productivity in a professional setting, and the magic number was 71.6°F. That was the temperature where participants were most productive, when subjected to a variety of basic and unbiased indicators of performance that are likely to be relevant in office type work. Things like resolving customer service calls and solving basic math equations; leaving out industrial workers, because that type of work is less objective and more reliant on physical ability. They then calculated the percentage of performance change – per degree increase in temperature – collected the stats and then analyzed the calculated work performance with temperature. That’s how they did it, to find the most optimum indoor temperature for productivity and comfort (of course, we’re assuming the comfort part, but it makes sense to us).

The results themselves showed that while participating in the series of ‘work’ tests, participants’ productivity levels increased as the temperature rose (up to 69.8-71.6°F degrees), and then decreased when the temperature increased above 73.4-75.2°F, showing an ideal productivity level when the temperature was 71.6°F. It’s a pretty cool thing to be able to learn these things about the human body and what helps us succeed.

So, if you’re looking to be more productive today, go ahead and give it a try – but it’s also important to keep in mind that just because a temp is proven to help us be productive, doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for electricity bills and expenses. So if you’re interested in trying this trick, test it for a couple hours, and then make sure to return your temp to the most energy efficient setting you have. And if you have any questions for us, give Bold City Heating & Air a call 904.299.8684 or contact us here.

Space Heaters: Good Idea, or Energy Sucker?

Space Heaters: Good Idea, or Energy Sucker?

Are you a fan of space heaters? Some people love them, and small dogs too, those little guys can never get enough of that concentrated blasting of heat. But when is using a space heater a good idea, and at what point will it start adding up? It might relieve some of the house heating burden from your furnace and warm your immediate vicinity, but at a certain point, those little suckers will run up the electricity bill faster than you can say Chihuahua. Lucky for us, the U.S. Department of Energy did a study, effectively generating a cost/benefit analysis of space heater use, and we would like to share those findings with you, so you can stay informed and make the best decisions for your workspace, home and wallet.

So where’s the line where space heaters actually make sense?

Well, according to the Department of Energy, space heaters “can be less expensive to use if you only want to heat one room or supplement inadequate heating in one room.” So, if you generally spend most of your time in one room of the house, or plan on getting some work done in your home office: turning the thermostat down, and plugging in a space heater to warm up one small area could be cost effective. But it’s a slippery slope, because if you forget to turn it off, you’ll have one hot room, and a very high energy bill.

This is what we know, space heaters can provide some much needed comfort when your joints start to hurt, but they are not more cost-effective than central heating systems when used for larger areas. Another statistic the government shared is that, when used to heat a whole home or business, gas furnaces use 43% less energy than using electric space heaters.

So, before you consider using space heaters to solve your spacial heating issues, think about why you even want one to begin with. Are you uncomfortable with your current situation? Why might that be? A good way to answer these questions would be to give your friends at Bold City Heating & Air a call 904.299.8684. We can come out and assess your system and give you tips on how to use it more effectively and efficiently to stay comfortable all season long.

If you would like to know more about keeping your home and air, fresh and clean contact us anytime at Bold City Heating & Air. We are happy to help! Give us a call 904.299.8684 and be sure to check our list of specials, because right now we are offering $30 off a system tune-up (regularly $99, now only $69). Experience the BOLD difference.

Spring Cleaning Advice

Spring Cleaning Advice

Spring is right around the corner! This year, it’s going to officially show its lovely face on Wednesday, March 20. So with that being said, we’ve got a spring cleaning hack we would like to share with you, for when the time comes to clean house!

Being cooped up all winter, with the weather being less humid, and our skin getting dry… You don’t want us to share the numbers when it comes to dead skin cells, but let’s just say, right around this time of year, we’re living in the THICK of it. Whether we see them or not, we shed tens of thousands of skin cells every minute!!! And because we don’t see all of it, dusting and cleaning up might not be a huge priority. Well, it should be. And in the spirit of spring, we’ve got a trick up our skincell-covered sleeves we’d like to share with you.

You know how the fan setting on your thermostat can control the blower? Usually, it is recommended that you leave it set to AUTO, to conserve energy and only heat or cool when the temperature rises or falls. Well, here’s our little secret, adjusting your thermostat blower setting can aid in dusting your home!

When you are ready to get to it, and you’ve laid out all your cleaning supplies – switch your thermostat blower to ON, and then get to work! You want the constant circulation for when you are cleaning. You see, as you start dusting or vacuuming, all that dust (and all the aforementioned skin cells) gets kicked up into the air, and because the air is circulating, it’s immediately sucked into the return vent! It guarantees a higher success rate of all that dust getting captured by the air filter. Then, of course, when you’re done, please remember to switch the thermostat back to AUTO.

If you would like to know more about keeping your home and air, fresh and clean contact us anytime at Bold City Heating & Air. We are happy to help! Give us a call 904.299.8684 and be sure to check our list of specials, because right now we are offering $30 off a system tune-up (regularly $99, now only $69). Experience the BOLD difference.

Bold City Heating & Air Gave Thanks!

Bold City Heating & Air Gave Thanks!

As active members of the Jacksonville community, we are so proud to have a presence here, and watch as the city grows into such a great place to live. One of the main components to an attractive city is the people who live here. We are so fortunate to have the military presence and influence that exists here in our large city, because it makes us feel safe knowing there are so many service members living among us. And this awareness got us thinking about how we could show this appreciation to these people, who have sacrificed so much for Americans to feel safe.

We decided on a social media driven giveaway campaign calling on the Jacksonville community to nominate a worthy veteran, family member or friend, who has made a positive impact on their lives. It was an opportunity to nominate a real hometown hero, whose commitment to serve was still as strong as the day they enlisted. In order to spread the word, we combined our social media efforts with an appearance on a WJXT morning show segment to promote the giveaway.

Fortunately, the campaign was a great success and we found our recipient, and had the privilege of announcing the winner live on the News4Jax Thanksgiving Morning Show. Aaron Dunn, who served as Chief Petty Officer in the United States Coast Guard, was the man who made the cut, and we believe him to be a wonderful choice to express our gratitude. He was present, along with his family, to receive his gift, and we were so happy to make the presentation. A few weeks later, the big day arrived, and on November 28th, Bold City Heating & Air donated the brand new HVAC system to Aaron, at his home for him and his family.

Bold City Heating & Air, as well as the greater Jacksonville community as a whole, feels fortunate to be surrounded by so many hard working and selfless veterans – and it was our pleasure to show our appreciation to one very deserving veteran and his family on Thanksgiving Day.

We love our veterans and the people of Jacksonville, and we will continue to look for opportunities to give back to our community that we feel has given us so much.

Buying a home? Get an HVAC inspection!

Buying a home? Get an HVAC inspection.

As if home buying wasn’t complicated enough, we are about to lay some information on you that will add one more element to the home buying experience. But, don’t be mad! This addition could save you a major headache and possibly some money in the end. So, hear us out!

When you are about ready to purchase a home, it’s pretty standard these days to get a home inspection – to make sure everything is on the ‘up and up’. It also provides peace of mind, knowing you are purchasing a sound structure. And, if the inspection sheds some light on some areas that need work, you can use that to your advantage when it comes time to negotiate the terms of purchase. That being said, it may come as a surprise to you that many home inspections rarely include a complete and comprehensive HVAC inspection. They will check to make sure all is in working order, but depending on the season, this system check could fall short.

So, it is recommended that you procure a secondary inspection of the HVAC system in the home you are considering, to ensure the system is in full, safe, working order. These are intricate systems, and if they’re not thoroughly examined, you could experience unexpected and costly problems. Don’t put yourself in a position to get caught by surprise. You have enough to worry about when purchasing a home, so unexpected expenses should not make that list. Catching a problem on the front end with your HVAC is an easy fix, as opposed to a major repair or replacement later on in your system’s lifespan.

Bold City Heating & Air offers home inspections any time of year, whether you’re buying, selling, or just want to see what’s going on in there. We’ve got you covered. Knowing what to expect is a tremendous stress reliever in a very stressful world – and establishing a trusting relationship with your local HVAC experts can ease the burden of home ownership.

So, if buying a house is in your future, consider an additional HVAC inspection by your friends at Bold City Heating & Air, and experience the BOLD difference.

Ten things I love about HVAC <3 Valentine’s Day Edition

Ten things I love about HVAC <3 Valentine’s Day Edition.

I love the way your air vents blow, and your timely gentle breeze.

I love how I rely on you, the way you operate with such ease.

I love your bulky system components, and how you adapt to all seasons.

I even love the sounds you make, but can’t pinpoint those reasons.

I love how comfortable you make me, no matter what time of year,

Whether heating or cooling, you always keep it in gear.

I love how you always read the room and know the perfect time to turn on,

It’s like you know me better than those algorithms created by Amazon.

I love how I can update you, with a smart thermostat,

So I can make adjustments, no matter where I might be at.

Because of floating allergens, and toxins to beware,

I love the way you keep me safe, by filtering the air.

I love the way I can maintain you, by one simple phone call.

But mostly, I love how Bold City Heating & Air knows you, inside, out and all.

Bold City Heating & Air loves all things HVAC – So give us a call 904.299.8684 with all your heating and air conditioning needs, to make sure you stay in love with your system for years to come!

Is this thing on..?

Is this thing on..?

The last thing you want to be asking yourself in the middle of winter: Is my heat pump working? Fortunately, we can provide you with a couple of “quick fixes” or troubleshoots to check for yourself. And if you just can’t wait, then of course, call the experts at Bold City Heating & Air, and we will come check it out for you.

 

Troubleshoot number one:

If your heat pump is reaching the temperature you set, but it doesn’t feel warm exiting the vents, your body is actually playing a little trick on you! And, the good news is, your heat pump is working just fine! We’ve noticed many of our customers calling to ask whether their heater or furnace is working properly based on simply feeling the air exiting the vents. Properly working heat pumps blow air that is warm, but at a temperature that can feel cold to us. They usually produce air anywhere from 85-93°F, but because our body temperature is higher than that, around 98.6°F, that air feels “cold” to the touch.

 

Troubleshoot number two:

If your heat pump is not reaching your set temperature, it’s entirely possible you could be dealing with one of these likely suspects:

 

Outside unit is blocked – Your heat pump pulls air from the outside into your home. If it is struggling with the airflow due to the outdoor unit being blocked by debris, that could explain the issue. Simply inspect the outside unit, and remove any blockages you might see that could be leading to improper airflow, and the problem should be solved.

 

Refrigerant charge is low – Now, this might sound like an oxymoron, however, your heat pump pulls heat into your home through refrigerant. Therefore, if your refrigerant levels are low, your heat pump will have a hard time bringing enough heat into your home to warm it up properly. Unfortunately, for a problem such as this, you’ll need a heating technician to come out and evaluate your refrigerant levels to determine if the system needs to be recharged. If levels turn out to be low, there is likely a leak that will need to be fixed.

 

Air filter is dirty – Air filters catch dust, debris, and other yucky stuff that’s floating around in our air. And eventually, all filters fill up which can lead to an airflow issue. So, check your air filter and change it out if necessary. We recommend replacing the filter every three months, as a good rule of thumb.

 

If you’re having any issues or have some more questions, give the experts at Bold City Heating & Air a call at 904.299.8684 – we’ll be happy to come out and take a look.