Displaying items by tag: HVAC system Myrtle Beach

Saturday, 01 May 2021 03:46

Benefits of a Smart Thermostat

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With smart appliances and home devices being so popular, you might have wondered if a smart thermostat is really worth the investment for your home. There are many benefits of a smart thermostat for your home. Let's take a look at a few of those benefits. 

 
1. Adjust the temperature of your home from anywhere - Smart thermostats have corresponding apps for your smart phone that allow you to check in on your home thermostat and adjust the temperature from anywhere. Heading home earlier than expected? No problem! Just adjust your temperature to your "home" setting and enjoy your usual comfortable temperature when you get there. 
 
2. Save energy - The primary reason most people invest in a smart thermostat is to save energy and thus, save money on their utility bill. Use your thermostat's energy saving settings and allow it to automatically adjust your temperature to maximize your savings. 
 
3. Easy to program - With modern interfaces and the handy smart phone app, smart thermostats are easier than ever to program. A few clicks and you'll have your thermostat all set up. 
 
4. Vacation mode - Smart thermostats have a vacation mode you can use when you're out of town so you don't have to mess with your regular daily settings. You keep your regular settings where they are and vacation mode takes care of adjusting your temperature while you're away. 
 
5. Analyze your energy use - Your smart thermostat can track your energy use over time. The insights you gain from this analysis can help you find additional opportunities to save energy and money. 
 
6. Avoid human error - Forget to change your thermostat settings before you leave? That's not an issue if you have a smart thermostat. It can detect that you've left and adjust your temperature accordingly. You can also adjust it on the fly from your cell phone. 
 
7. Get alerts - In the event of a power outage or your home's temperature drifts out of your pre-set range, you'll receive alerts. Alerts keep you updated on exactly what is happening with your home temperature. Some systems can also send you an alert when there is a problem with your HVAC system. 
 
Is a smart thermostat worth the investment for your home? Do you want to be able to control your temperature from anywhere, save energy, save money and analyze your energy use? Then the benefits of a smart thermostat are definitely worth the investment. You'll gain more control over your energy use and get valuable insights that help you save money on your utility bills. 
Published in Blog
Wednesday, 31 March 2021 15:16

Is a Zoned System Right for Your Home?

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The goal of a zoned system is to accurately control the temperature for each room or zone while also reducing total energy use and reducing cost. Zoned systems are a good idea when you have unoccupied rooms or when you experience a temperature imbalance in your home such as hot spots or cold spots. A zoned system is an investment, especially for existing homes that need to be retrofitted with the proper equipment so you'll want to carefully consider whether the investment in a zoned system will bring you the comfort and energy savings you want. So, is a zoned system right for your home? 

 

What is a Zoned System?

A zoned system is when one HVAC unit is used to provide different temperatures to two or more rooms or zones in the home, rather than having two separate HVAC systems. Dampers are installed in the ductwork to help direct the flow of heated or cooled air into different rooms to meet the temperature needs of each zone. The dampers are managed through a damper control panel that uses data from the thermostat system to direct the right amount of air into each zone. The thermostat system can be individual thermostats that communicate with a central control panel or a single thermostat that controls the temperature in the various zones in the home. A good analogy to understand how a zoned system works is to compare it to your lighting. If one switch turned on all the lighting in the house and you couldn't control the lighting room by room, this would be a standard HVAC system. If you have a switch in each room that controls the lighting for each individual room, that is like a zoned system. 

 

How Much Do Zoned Systems Cost?

The cost of a zoned system is usually around $2,000 to $2,500 for two zones and goes up by about $500 per zone in existing homes where a zoning system is being retrofit into the home. When installed in a new construction home, the cost of two zones runs about $750 cheaper and increases by about $250 per zone. Installing a zoned system in a new home under construction requires less work and labor and is thus cheaper overall. If you're considering installing a zoned system in a new build home, that is the optimal time to do it, rather than having to retrofit an existing home for a zoning system. That doesn't mean that putting a zoned system into an existing home is a bad idea. It can be very beneficial if you experience hot and cold spots or rooms or if you have unoccupied rooms you don't use much. 

 
Is a zoned system right for your home? Give us a call! We'll come out and take a look at your existing system and let you know what it would take to convert to a zoned system so you can make a clear and informed decision. 
 
 
Published in Blog
Wednesday, 31 March 2021 15:06

Preparing Your HVAC for Spring and Summer

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Spring is here and summer is right around the corner, along with the heat and humidity. You'll want to take steps now to prepare your HVAC for spring and summer to make sure you are cool and comfortable all season long. 

 
1. Check your outside unit - Check your outside unit for leaves, grasses, twigs, branches and any other debris that could potentially block the proper operation of the unit. Also make sure you have one foot minimum clearance from shrubs, bushes, flowers, branches, fences and trees around the unit to allow for proper air flow. 
 
2. Check your air filter - Professionals recommend checking your air filter monthly and changing it out when it gets dirty. For most homes this would be about every other month or possibly every month in homes with pets. If you haven't checked your air filter in a while, it probably needs to be changed out. 
 
3. Do a test run - Turn your air conditioner on before you need it (if possible) for a test run. Listen for any unusual noises, check for any strange smells that don't dissipate, make sure the system is blowing and the fan is running. Also give the system time to start cooling to make sure the cooling function is working. If it doesn't or won't hold temperature, the coils might be freezing up. Either way, if you notice any signs of issues with proper operation of the system, it's time to call in your HVAC technician to take a look. 
 
4. Have a professional HVAC tune-up - Set up your seasonal tune-up. Most professionals recommend having your HVAC system cleaned, tuned-up and inspected twice per year - in the fall and in the spring. This gets your system ready to take on the humid heat of summer (or the winter cold). Your regular maintenance appointment also helps catch small problems before they can lead to a major breakdown. 
 
The last thing you want is a major breakdown of your HVAC system when the heat is beating down. With that summer heat just around the corner, now is the time for preparing your HVAC for spring and summer. The proper preparation helps your system run efficiently all season long to keep your home comfortable no matter what the weather is outside. 
Published in Blog
Saturday, 27 February 2021 11:33

How to Make the Most of Your Energy Star HVAC System

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Energy Star products are certified to meet strict guidelines and standards for energy efficiency set by the EPA. There are additional things you can do to make the most of the energy efficiency and get the best bang for your buck out of your investment in your HVAC. Here's how to make the most of your Energy Star HVAC System. 

 
1. Install a programmable thermostat - A programmable thermostat allows you to set your temperature to a cooler or warmer setting (depending on season) while you are away and come up to your preferred temperature by the time you arrive home each day. This helps you save additional money on your utility bills by reducing the work your system has to do to maintain temperature when you aren't home. 
 
2. Properly size your new HVAC system - To ensure you get the proper size HVAC system for your home, your contractor will need to do an HVAC load calculation or Manual J calculation. This is an evaluation of a variety of data about your home that helps determine what size system is best for your home. It includes your square footage but also other factors such as the number of windows, amount of shade, roof color and roof type and more. Get the wrong size system and it could cycle too quickly to properly dehumidify your home or could use excess energy by cycling on and off too frequently. Having the right size system is vital to making the most of your Energy Star HVAC system. 
 
3. Seal and insulate ductwork - By sealing and insulating ductwork, you reduce the likelihood of air leaks and also help prevent temperature loss as air circulates from your HVAC system throughout your home. Preventing temperature loss helps your home reach the desired temperature more efficiently and prevents your HVAC system from running longer than necessary to reach temperature. 
 
4. Maintain your system - You should have a professional servicing at least once per year, preferably twice - once in the fall and once in the spring before the harsh seasons of winter and summer. In between professional maintenance appointments, check your filter monthly and change as soon as it appears dirty, especially during the summer and winter seasons when your system is working hardest. It's recommended to change your filter at least once every three months at the very minimum. 
 
5. Use your ceiling fans - Ceiling fans help circulate air and can push cooler air downward in the summer while creating an updraft during the winter that forces warmer air downward. Your fan should be set to rotate clockwise in the winter and counterclockwise in the summer. 
 
Using these five tips together can help you make the most of your Energy Star HVAC system. By making the most of your system, you maximize energy efficiency and save the most money possible on your utility bills. For more information on new Energy Star systems from Bryant, call Carolina Comfort Systems
Published in Blog
Friday, 04 December 2020 15:12

Top 7 Common Cold Weather Heating Problems

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When the temperature drops, your HVAC system goes to work keeping your home warm and comfortable. But how can you tell if there is a problem brewing? Whether you have a furnace or a heat pump, there are a common set of issues that can crop up when the temperature drops. Here are the top 7 most common cold weather heating problems and possible causes.

 
1. Dirty filters - Dirty filters restrict airflow, add to wear and tear, make your HVAC work harder and lose energy efficiency and can cause damage to various components over time. Ideally, it's best to change your filter every other month or monthly if you have pets. This is one of the most common causes of cold weather heating problems. 
 
2. Cracked heat exchanger - The most common cause of a cracked heat exchanger is a lack of regular maintenance of the system. A cracked heat exchanger can also result in a carbon monoxide (CO) leak that can cause serious illness or death. While this is a costly repair, it's important to have it taken care of immediately because of the CO danger. 
 
3. Cycling too frequently - Cycling too often can be a result of a dirty or clogged air filter, most commonly. If the air filter is new, the problem is more likely to be an issue with airflow or a faulty thermostat setting. 
 
4. Loud bangs or sounds during the heating cycle - Loud noises most often indicate airflow problems. If airflow isn't the issue, it could also be a clogged burner. In either case, a visit from a professional is required. 
 
5. Air continuously blowing - The most common cause of an HVAC system that is constantly blowing, whether or not the heating element is producing heat, is a faulty limit switch. This is a repair you'll need an HVAC professional to perform for you. 
 
6. Faulty pilot light - There are a few ways the pilot light can be faulty. It should be a small, bright and blue flame. If the flame is another color such as yellow or orange, or doesn't burn brightly or not at all, the most likely cause is a dirty or damaged flame sensor. Sometimes this issue can be remedied by cleaning the flame sensor while other times, it requires a new flame sensor. 
 
7. Frozen pipes - Just like regular plumbing pipes in your home, some HVAC systems can experience frozen pipes and coils during especially cold weather. Also like your plumbing, frozen pipes and coils can burst or crack. The most common way people notice this problem is if their HVAC isn't keeping up to the set temperature. Calling in a professional ASAP can help prevent cracks or breaks in the coils or pipes inside your HVAC system. 
 
Your HVAC system works hard in both the hot months and the cold months to keep your home comfortable. Knowing about these top 7 common cold weather heating problems helps you quickly recognize when there is an issue and call in a professional to help fix the problem before it becomes a major breakdown.  
Published in Blog
Monday, 31 August 2020 10:41

Prep Your HVAC for Fall

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1. Change air filter - Air filters should be changed bi-monthly or monthly if you have someone with allergies or asthma in your home. Use this opportunity to make sure you have a fresh air filter in your HVAC unit. Dirty filters hinder airflow and make your HVAC work harder, which uses more energy and costs you more money, plus adds wear and tear to your system.
 
2. Change thermostat settings - As the weather turns colder, you'll want to adjust your thermostat settings to be cooler when you are not home and to warm up when you normally arrive home. This way you save money and energy without sacrificing comfort. 
 
3. Clean the coils - Clean the condenser and evaporator coil on the outdoor unit. Brush away dirt, grime, leaves, lawn clippings and other debris from the coils. 
 
4. Clean away debris from the exterior unit - Clean the exterior and around coils to remove gunk and debris that can hinder airflow. Also make sure trees and shrubs are trimmed back away from the unit to avoid impeding airflow from growing foliage. 
 
5. Insulate pipes - Use foam pipe covers to cover pipes and electrical wiring from the unit to your home. Secure it in place with duct tape. This will help prevent freezing and cracking pipes during the colder months. 
 
6. Test the heat - Test the heat to ensure it's working before you actually need it. It might have a slight burning smell for the first hour or two as the unit burns off any dust that has collected inside. If the heat doesn't work, you can call a pro to look at it before you actually need it on a cold day or night. 
 
7. Have your system professionally cleaned and inspected - Having a professional out to service your system includes lubricating motors, checking belts for tightness and wear and tear, inspecting and tightening electrical connections, testing for and sealing duct leaks, verifying proper operation of the system, testing airflow, calibrating the thermostat and checking the refrigerant levels. It's ideal to have this professional service in the fall before you turn on the heat and in the spring before you fire up the A/C. 
 

Fall is just a few short weeks away. Take some time now to prep your HVAC system for the cooler fall weather so you don't end up with no heat on a cold day or night. A little preparation now can save you money from an emergency service call later.

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 30 June 2020 12:10

Keeping Your Home Cooler This Summer

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When the temperatures rise, you need every tip and trick in the book to help keep your home cool and comfortable. Here are 8 tips to keep your home cooler this summer. 

 
1. Heat reducing window film - Install heat reducing window film on windows to help block between 70-90% of the infrared heat and UV rays from the sun. This helps prevent your house from getting warmed up by the sun while still allowing you to enjoy plenty of natural light. 
 
2. Close the blinds - Closing the blinds reflects the sun's rays back out of the window and prevents those rays from warming up your home. If you can't afford window films (tip #1), this is a good alternative, though it does restrict natural light. 
 
3. Use your ceiling fans - First, it's important to remember that fans cool people, not rooms. It's the airflow moving across your skin that cools you down when sitting under or in front of a fan. Using your ceiling fan can help you feel as if the room is four degrees cooler. 
 
4. Use a programmable thermostat - If you are gone most of the day, use a programmable thermostat to conserve energy and operate at a higher temperature when you are not home, then gradually cool down to your desired temperature by the time you normally arrive home. This keeps you comfortable and cool when you are home while saving you money during the day. 
 
5. Install a ductless unit - If you have a particularly warm room or rooms that the ductwork doesn't reach, a ductless system is a great option. It mounts on the wall and cools the room down with a low carbon footprint. It can save you money while keeping the desired room cool and comfortable. 
 
6. Plant trees - Trees and shrubs create shade and shade helps block some of the sunlight reaching your home. Less sunlight reaching your home is less sunlight to warm up your home by the sun's rays. A shaded home is a cooler home. 
 
7. Cook outside more - Use your grill or outdoor kitchen to cook more of your meals. This keeps the residual heat from cooking outside. You won't be artificially heating up your home with the stove or oven with indoor cooking. 
 
8. Keep inside doors open - To allow for the best airflow through your home and an overall cooler home, keep your interior doors open. 
 
Summers in South Carolina can get really hot. We hope these 8 tips to keep your home cooler this summer help you ride out the heat in comfort. 
Published in Blog
Tuesday, 30 June 2020 11:50

Prepping Your Bryant System for Summertime

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Summertime is here and so is the heat and humidity. If you haven't already done so, now is a good time to prep your Bryant system for the sweltering summer. 

 
1. Clean or replace air filters - Dirty air filters restrict airflow and cause your system to work harder. Also, dirty indoor air circulating through your home can trigger asthma and allergy symptoms. 
 
2. Have your system cleaned and inspected twice per year - Once per year is the minimum but twice per year is the recommendation. You should have your system cleaned and inspected in the fall for your furnace and again in the spring for your air conditioner. This will keep your system running as optimally as possible and help you reap all the benefits of a well-maintained system. 
 
3. Remove debris from around the outdoor unit - Regularly inspect and clean away debris from your outdoor unit such as leaves, twigs and grass clippings. It's also important that your outdoor unit have a good amount of space for airflow around it. Make sure any shrubs or bushes are trimmed away from the unit to allow a two-foot clearance between the plant and the unit for proper airflow. 
 
4. Install a smart thermostat - Bryant's Homewise smart thermostat helps your system run more efficiently. It can sense when no one is home and automatically adjust itself to an away temperature or you can use your smartphone to adjust your home's temperature while you are on the go. When all of the great features are used, this smart thermostat can save as much as 20% on your utility bills. 
 
5. Keep vents open - Check and make sure at least 80% of the vents in your home are fully open. When more than 20% of the vents are closed, it creates strain on your Bryant system that can cause a breakdown or lead to additional wear and tear on your system. This can shorten the lifespan of your Bryant system. 
 
6. Set ceiling fans in the right direction - While not directly related to your system but a tip that will help your system keep your home cooler, make sure your ceiling fans are going in the right direction. During the summer, you want the downdraft to help circulate cool air so fans should run counterclockwise. During the winter, you want an updraft to pull cooler air up and force warmer air down so fans should run clockwise. 
 
Summer has begun here in South Carolina with much warmer and more humid days yet to come. If you haven't already prepped your Bryant system for summer, now is the time to do so. Keeping your Bryant system prepped and maintained will keep it working hard all summer long to keep you cool and comfortable. 
Published in Blog

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In a standard system, there is generally only one speed so your system is either cycled off or cycled on full speed. When the temperature drops or rises and triggers the HVAC system to turn on, the system must ramp up to the one full speed and run until the temperature reaches the desired level before cycling off. Bryant has variable speed technology. What this means is that the speed your HVAC needs to ramp up to for a cycle can vary. Your system's speed only ramps up as far as is necessary to keep the comfort level steady to heat or cool your home. Let's take a look at some other benefits. 

 
1. Your system doesn't work as hard or as long - Because variable speed allows for speeds below the "full speed" of most other systems, your system doesn't have to work as hard to get to a lower speed. Lower speeds don't require as long to cycle fully on and then fully off so your system also doesn't run for as long when you have variable speed options. 
 
2. Maximizes comfort - Creates more interior temperature sensitivity and also better humidity control when your system can react more precisely to fluctuations in temperature. This means your temperature stays more steady and constant and you stay more comfortable. 
 
3. Energy efficient - By only ramping up to the speed necessary to maintain comfort, Bryant's variable speed technology is energy efficient. A slower speed, faster cycle with a Bryant system uses less energy than a full speed, complete cycle with a standard system. Any time you are saving energy, you're also saving money on your utility bill. 
 
4. Quieter operation - Because the system can use slower speeds, it operates at a quieter level than a standard system at full speed. Slower speeds aren't as loud and noisy as traditional systems with only one speed. You can enjoy maximum comfort with the quietest operation necessary to keep your home at the right temperature. 
 
Bryant's variable speed technology can be found on many of the Evolution line of comfort systems and the Preferred Geothermal Heat Pump as well. To explore the different variable speed technology can make for your home and comfort, call Carolina Comfort Systems to learn more. 
Published in Blog
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