Air Conditioner Maintenance

Novel Care has been handling the air conditioner maintenance needs of people in Toronto and the rest of the GTA for over 30 years now. During that time we’ve help maintain the efficiency and longevity of just about every brand you can imagine. That includes ductless air conditioners and central air conditioners.

AC maintenance is an important part of owning an air conditioner. Without regular maintenance your air conditioner will become less and less efficient over time and as a result it will use more energy to perform the same cooling function you need it to. This will cost you more and more on your monthly energy bills.

For more information about AC maintenance, to book an appointment or for a free estimate contact us today: 416-921-0000

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Your furnace is an important part of ensuring your home remains a comfortable and healthy environment. Furnace filters may not seem like a big part of that equation due to their simplicity, but in fact they are. One of the easiest ways to avoid problems with your furnace is to ensure that you change your furnace filter regularly.

An Overview of Furnace Filters

Every furnace has a filter, and if one doesn’t then it has some sort of other filtering system for the air that passes through it. Furnace filters ensure that dust, hair, and other airborne particles that are sucked in by your HVAC systems intake aren’t redistributed throughout your home via the vents. All air that gets sucked into your HVAC system passes through the furnace filter prior to being heated or cooled and sent back out into your home or office.

Types of Furnace Filters

There are three common types of furnace filters available and used in different furnace models. There are the cheap fibreglass furnace filters, pleated furnace filters, and reusable furnace filters. Each type of filter has its own pros and cons that can help homeowners decide which type is best for their purposes.

Fibreglass Furnace Filters

Fibreglass furnace filters are the cheapest filters on the market. They’re disposable and as a result typically need replacing more often than any other type of filter. At Novel Care we recommend replacing these types of furnace filters at least every 90 days or when you notice that they’re clogged and affecting the efficiency of your HVAC system. Fibreglass filters come in a variety of different sizes that can suit just about any furnace, but also have a lower filter rating.

Pleated Furnace Filters

These are the most common types of filters. They vary in price from between $12 to $50 depending on their size and quality. Pleated furnace filters are typically made from paper and polyester and should also be changed about every 90 days but can be left longer if the air quality isn’t bad or they aren’t clogged with dust. If you’re looking for a balance between cost and good quality air filtering these are the best option.

Reusable Furnace Filters

These are more expensive than fibreglass or pleated furnace filters and can last for many years with proper care and cleaning. They’re typically made from plastic and aluminum, and the filter itself can be washed and vacuumed when it’s time for cleaning. While these are the most expensive options they come in a wide range of prices depending on the filter ratings, but they’re generally accepted as the best filters on the market.

 

Understanding Filter Ratings

Furnace filters are rated on the MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) scale. This scale ranges between 1 and 16 with 16 being the best rating possible.  Most filters that you would want in your home are rated between 8 and 11. If you have someone with respiratory issues or allergies then finding a filter with a rating higher than 11 or 12 is ideal. Filters with high ratings are also useful if someone in your home smokes as they are better at filtering the air of smoke and related smells.

You might be thinking that it makes sense to only purchase filters that are rated 16 because they’ll provide the best indoor air quality, which is true but the might the MERV rating the slower air passes through the filter. The downside to impeding the flow of air is that it can directly affect the efficiency of your HVAC system and slightly increase your energy bills. This is because your HVAC appliances have to work harder to force air through the filters and spread it throughout your home.

Overall, furnace filters are an important part of your HVAC system and ensuring that the indoor air quality of your home is at its best. Regardless of the filter that you choose it will eventually need to be replaced, so taking a look once a month to see if it needs cleaning or replacing is ideal. Regularly changing your furnace filter also ensure that the efficiency of your system isn’t compromised by a clogged filter.

For more information about furnace filters contact Novel Care today: 416-921-0000. Novel Care has been providing reputable and professional HVAC services to customers in Toronto, York Region and the rest of the GTA for over 30 years.

Summer in Toronto and the GTA can be unbearable without an air conditioner that’s functioning properly. While it’s important to schedule annual air conditioner maintenance with a reputable company like Novel Care, homeowners can do more than they think when it comes to air conditioner maintenance. Essentially, there are a few important steps that can be taken prior to flipping your thermostat over to cooling from heating in the spring. Understanding the basics of your air conditioner is the best place to start understanding the important of air conditioner maintenance.

The Basics of Air Conditioning

Understanding how your systems works is a great way to understand the important of air conditioner maintenance. A central air conditioning system consists of 3 main components:

  • A Condenser
  • A Blower
  • Ductwork

The condenser is the large metal box that you see outside of your home. This regulates the temperature of the refrigerant or Freon, which travels back and forth from the condenser to the inside of your home. The condenser pressurizes the Freon gas and turns it into a liquid, which is now at a high temperature. It then gets sent back into the house to the blower unit. As it comes in contact with the blower unit it becomes a gas again and as a result becomes much colder. This cold Freon gas then enters the blower coil, which is located in your duct system, and cools the air that is blown over it and into your duct system and out into your home. The cycle is repeated until the temperature set by the thermostat is reached.

Now that you have a basic understanding about how your air conditioning system works it’s easy to see why certain components should be maintained by professional HVAC technicians, but here are a few things that you can do as a homeowner.

Air Conditioner Maintenance: Filters

Your system’s filter is typically located at the blower unit where the duct system meets the condenser. Air flow is the most important part of your entire system, so ensuring that your filter is clean and changed regularly is essential to the efficiency and viability of your system. If your filter gets too dirty and restricts airflow it can dramatically impact your system’s efficiency, how well it cools your home, and even cost you money as efficiency drops.

Air Conditioner Maintenance: Water Damage

Warm air is continually passing over your cooling coil, which means condensation will occur and beads of moisture are created on the coils. Typically this moisture is sent through a tube and into a drain in your basement or a pan located under the unit. If your unit isn’t draining properly this water can cause damage to other components of your unit and even result in mold growth if not addressed.

Air Conditioner Maintenance: Obstructions

As mentioned one of the most important things in your air conditioning system is airflow. This also includes the airflow to the condenser unit outside. In order to operate properly the condenser unit needs to have a decent amount of airflow. When things like trees, bushes, patio furniture, and shrubs restrict airflow you unit has to work harder to do its job, which reduces its effectiveness and efficiency.

Ductwork Maintenance

There are a few easy things to monitor when it comes to your duct system:

  • Ensure that the vents in your duct system aren’t obstructed in any way and can easily distribute cool air throughout your home.
  • Check your system for mold: Condensation can accumulate in parts of your duct system and this moisture can turn into mold if not addressed. Cleaning your vents and duct system is one of the best ways to keep your home free of mold.
  • Basements are traditional cooler than the rest of a house, so it’s ideal to adjust the dampers of your duct system in the basement to force more cool air to the upper levels of your home in the summer.

 

Overall understanding your air conditioning system is the best way to take care of it and perform some basic air conditioner maintenance in between professional air conditioner maintenance appointments.

For more information about air conditioner maintenance or to have a new air conditioner professionally installed at an affordable price contact Novel Care today: 416-921-0000