How Routine Inspections Benefit Your HVAC System

Today, more than ever before it is financially sensible to ensure that your HVAC system is free of problems and that it operates efficiently over the long-term. Having HVAC routine inspections performed along with scheduled maintenance is one of the best ways to ensure a long lifespan and excellent performance when it comes to HVAC equipment. In fact, a lack of routine regular inspections and maintenance will ultimately end up costing homeowners more money over the long term.

Service Life and Reliability

Here are some of the typical benefits associated with having routine inspections performed on HVAC equipment. For example, those who have their systems inspected routinely can expect a longer useful life for their HVAC equipment. Keep in mind that replacing a complete HVAC system can be an expensive proposition and that is why it is well worth maintaining existing equipment as long as it is in good operating order. Most experts agree that a lack of proper maintenance and routine inspections can greatly hinder service life and the reliability of a typical residential or commercial HVAC system.

Service Life and Efficiency

In fact, many estimates suggest that service life and efficiency can be reduced by as much is up to 50% when regular maintenance and inspections are not performed. Keeping detailed records of data and monitoring performance of an HVAC system provides a more complete picture of the overall condition of the equipment. This helps to quickly identify any potential problems or defects that could lead to more serious and more expensive issues. In addition, equipment that is properly maintained, inspected and cleaned will simply operate more efficiently. Keeping a system operating at the highest levels of efficiency equates to saving money in terms of energy usage.

Routine Inspections

Dirty equipment such as a dirty heat transfer surface or tubes that are clogged makes it more difficult for equipment to transfer heat efficiently. This results in equipment working harder to do the same job and ultimately using a greater amount of energy. Routine inspections not only check for good functionality but they also look for parts and components that are dirty and that may require cleaning. At the end of the day, routine inspections will improve efficiency and save money on energy.

Greater Levels of Efficiency

Finally, routine inspections of HVAC equipment mean that the homeowner is now proactive rather than reactive. Waiting for unexpected problems to arise in an HVAC system can be a very costly way to manage this important home appliance. That said being proactive and having preventative maintenance and routine inspections performed on HVAC equipment will ultimately be less expensive and less resource intensive than waiting for something to break or malfunction. Those wishing to extend the useful life of their HVAC equipment will enjoy greater levels of efficiency and save money by being proactive rather than reactive and simply need look no further than routine HVAC system inspections. Contact Alpine Heating and Cooling today for the best in Bellingham HVAC system maintenance and repair.

Gas Furnace Yelp Review From July 2017 – Gary B.

Needed a new gas furnace… everyone I called was ‘nice’ and able to schedule an appointment for an estimate. Alpine Heating and the owner, Gary clearly were the best in all ways.

Alpine sells one of the highest quality with lowest repairs (per Consumer Reports) furnaces, American Standard (same inside as a Trane, yet lower pricing). Gary gave me several options with no BS or upsell. In fact, not selling at all, just saying here’s your two choices. And if it were a home for a friend, I’d recommend ‘this’.

Other companies sold mid or low tier quality products for more money. Other companies only had one or two staff total, maybe not there when you need them? Other companies did fancy measurements of ‘static pressure’ and ‘heat loss’ calculations but wasted my time doing them while acting as if they knew what they were doing. But, in fact, were just ‘nice people’ selling at a very high price with slick color company brochures.

Alpine has a select crew of installers and repair people. Big enough to do it right, small enough to care about you, their customer. Competitive pricing on top tier products.

The installation was quickly scheduled. Gary returned to measure for an extra duct that I needed. The crew (two guys) did an excellent job and did not make a big mess. All electrical work, gas piping, metal fabrication, items that support a good installation of a furnace, were done neatly and with good practices and to code. I know of these things, having owned many homes and rentals through the years and being in the construction industry myself. No extra charges for ‘we didn’t anticipate this’ either. The bid price was the final price, with a discount for cash or check.

Alpine can make custom sheet metal parts in their own shop, which is fast and correct. Some companies just use stock parts and ‘make them fit’. Alpine’s sheet metal work fit perfectly as they transitioned from the new American Standard Furnace to the existing duct work.

In sum, a 100% satisfactory experience, first site visit through clean up. Thank you, Alpine!

Extending the life of a residential hot water heater can save money and prevent potential water damage as well as other related costly repair problems. Here are a few useful tips for homeowners wishing to maintain a residential water heater in top condition year-round. One example is to simply know where the water heater is located within your home. Be sure that there is clear access to this important home appliance and that the plumbing is easily accessible in the event that repairs or immediate action is required.

Powered by Propane

In addition it is recommended by most professionals that you know what type of water heater you have installed. For example, is the water heater powered by propane, electric or natural gas. Perhaps you have a tankless type water heater. Whatever the case may be, knowing well in advance what kind of device is installed in your home can ultimately save a lot of time, trouble and money. Experts in the industry recommend that homeowners write down in a safe place the serial number and model number of the unit that is installed in their home.

Model Number

This information is vital and important especially for a professional plumber who may end up working on the unit at some point. Keep in mind that embedded within the serial number and model number is information on gallon capacity as well as the age of the appliance. Equally important is to know where and how to turn off the flow of water to a water heater. Knowing how to shut the water off quickly in addition to the power or fuel supply for the unit can prevent water damage and other situations that could result in expensive repairs.

Adequate Airflow

Finally, keep the area around any water heater clear and free of debris at all times. This ensures that if a leak develops that you will notice it quickly. If the area surrounding the heater is cluttered it may not be as easy to identify developing leaks. Also ensure that there is adequate airflow around the unit. This is especially true of water heaters that use gas as a fuel. A lack of adequate airflow can result in reduced efficiency and even result in damage to the burner chamber or other parts and components within the unit. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today for Burlington WA HVAC services that always get results.

Tankless Water Heater Tips and Tricks

Takagi Tankless

Takagi Tankless

Today more than ever before consumers are turning to tankless water heaters as a way to lower energy consumption and decrease utility expenses in general. That said keep in mind that this type of water heater requires a special type of venting in order to blow hot exhaust gas outside of the home as a way to dissipate heat. Different from conventional water heaters, tankless hot water heaters require unique and creative venting options.

Direct Vent Pulls Air From the Outside

Keep in mind that in many cases the installation of this type of water heater results in a more attractive and less expensive finished product. Perhaps the most important aspect of a tankless water heater is that it will save considerable space. Tankless water heaters can be vented in one of two ways. They can either be vented via a power vent or direct venting. A direct vent pulls air from the outside of the home and will typically have two vent openings used for exhaust and intake.

Outside Tankless Water Heaters

This kind of configuration is unique in that it allows a tankless unit to fit in a much smaller spaces than would otherwise be the case. Conversely, power vent type units only require that there be adequate exhaust venting available. That said, a power vent unit usually requires a larger area so that adequate volumes of air are available and so that normal combustion is assured. There are other types of units that are known as outside tankless water heaters. These are good because they can free up a lot of indoor space. Best of all, an outside unit requires no additional venting.

High Efficiency Levels

When installing a unit that does require outside venting remember that venting can be through a sidewall or roof or any other number of other unique venting options. Finally, there are units that are known as condensing tankless water heaters. These are a good choice because they can lower energy costs thanks to very high efficiency levels. With the lower cost of installation associated with nonmetal parts being used, a condensing tankless water heater may be the perfect choice for today’s modern homeowner. Contact Alpine Heating and Cooling today to learn more about Mount Vernon Washington HVAC systems and services with a proven record.

 

 

Explore Your Options With A Ductless Mini Split Heat Pump

Modern innovations in HVAC systems have allowed more options for homeowners and businesses today than even just a few short years ago. A ductless mini split heat pump is a unique type of heating system that effectively eliminates energy inefficiencies that are often seen in ducted heating and cooling systems. In fact, a typical ductless mini split can reduce energy inefficiencies by up to 30% or more. These systems are typically easy to install, quiet and efficient and may even be eligible for a variety of energy rebates.

Type Of Installation

One of the best advantages of using this type of heat pump system is that they are ideal for the zone heating or cooling of specific areas of an interior space. In most cases, this type of system can be installed and be up and running within a matter of hours. A ductless mini split heat pump is easy to operate, easy to maintain and will typically last for many years once installed. It is important to note that not all homes are suited for this type of installation. For example, some homes would require too many separate many split systems to be considered cost-effective.

Mini Split System

While there are a variety situations where this kind of heating or cooling system would be ideal there are other cases where a more robust and comprehensive system would be more appropriate. That is why it is important to talk with your heating and cooling professional to find out which system will work best for your particular needs. Keep in mind that the portion of a mini split system that is installed indoors can at times be bulky and easily visible. Those who prefer a more hidden type of system may wish to consider other options.

Heating And Cooling

All said a ductless mini split is an excellent option when used in the right type of application. Having a professional assessment of your home or business is usually the perfect place to begin when determining whether or not this type of heating and cooling option is the most appropriate. Many factors are taken into account such as the size of the interior space and the area that requires heating and cooling. The electrical panel and the type of construction as well as the existing system in use are all taken into account when determining if a mini split system is best. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today for Mount Vernon HVAC system service and sales.

Tips For Improving Natural Ventilation in Your Home

A Woman stays warm and enjoys a cup of cocoa in her cozy house

Good Airflow and Better Indoor Air Quality

Natural ventilation plays an important role in helping to keep your home fresh, healthy and clean. Simply stated, natural ventilation is created when fresh outdoor air is allowed to enter living spaces and flow freely. Natural ventilation does not require an air-conditioning unit or fans. Sometimes referred to as passive cooling, this kind of ventilation is completely free and highly effective in keeping any home looking and smelling fresh. Here are a few easy ways to improve natural ventilation in your existing home or even if you plan on building a new home.

Improved Air Movement

For example, choosing furnishings that are made of breathable materials such as wicker or bamboo can help to encourage improved air movement throughout your home. The very nature of this type of furniture allows for good airflow thanks to minimal heat retention and an overall airy construction. While this kind of furniture is frequently used outdoors it can easily be used indoors to create a unique and inviting look while improving overall interior airflow.

Improve Indoors Air Quality

Equally important is to get into the habit of opening windows frequently especially when the weather is nice. Opening windows is a great way to save energy used by electric fans and other types of air conditioning or cooling systems in your home. Keep in mind the fresh airflow can actually substantially improve indoor air quality. Those building a new home will find that proper window orientation can easily improve cross ventilation. This can be as simple as placing windows on north or south facing sides of the home. Smart design when building a home can greatly increase good airflow in all interior spaces.

Design of the Structure

Another great way of improving airflow when considering the design of a new home is to include transitional spaces throughout the design of the structure. This can include adding atriums, courts, balconies, patios and other types of open outdoor spaces that will help to encourage outdoor living and better airflow. Keep in mind that the advantages of maximizing natural ventilation cannot be overstated. Improved indoor air quality, reduced energy usage and a better overall indoor living experience are just some of the benefits of getting it right when it comes to natural ventilation in your residential home. Contact Alpine Heating and Cooling today for the best in Burlington WA HVAC services that get results.

How to Care For Your Residential HVAC System

Heating and Air ConditioningWhile nothing compares to having your HVAC system maintained by a professional HVAC technician, there are some things, you, the homeowner can do between check-ups to keep your system running at peak performance. Best of all, regular HVAC care and maintenance will improve efficiency and even lower energy costs. One example of a great way to keep your system running at its best is to change filters frequently. Remember that a dirty filter will restrict airflow causing a system to work harder.

Check Refrigerant Lines

A clogged filter will also have a direct impact on indoor air quality. Plan to change the filter on your HVAC system every 90 days to gain maximum benefit. At the very least it is a good idea to check filter condition on a monthly basis and change as necessary. Equally important is to check refrigerant lines that run into your home. Look for frost accumulation and any possible leaks. If a leak is detected it is important to call in a qualified Burlington WA HVAC technician as soon as possible.

Keep the Entire Interior of Your Home Clean

Cleaning a system often is also a great way to improve efficiency and to extend the life of that system. In fact, one of the best ways to keep a residential HVAC system in top condition is to simply keep the entire interior of your home clean. A clean home that is free of dust and dirt will result in a cleaner HVAC system. Clean floors and curtains often and especially vents and heat registers. The air handling unit and the outdoor compressor unit should also be the targets of regular and frequent cleaning.

Quick Fix When Dealing with Mold

Finally, mold is a serious issue and must be addressed as soon as discovered. Keep in mind that a mold problem that goes unmanaged can quickly become a major issue for homeowners. Mold spores can spread very quickly and can be transported via airflow through the HVAC system. If you suspect mold in your home have a professional diagnose the problem and take corrective action as soon as possible. A quick fix when dealing with mold is to use household bleach to stop growth until a professional is able to deal with the problem. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today for the best in Bellingham HVAC services.

American Standard Heat Pump

American Standard Heat Pump

Saving money is more important today than it has ever been in the past. This is especially true when it comes to improving the efficiency of an existing home heating or cooling system. First it is important to understand that most heating and cooling systems are not created the same. Different systems will produce different results and can have varying levels of efficiency. Simply stated, always make a smart decision when installing an HVAC system in your home as a way to keep utility bills as low as possible without sacrificing comfort.

Heating and Cooling Costs

It is important to note that in most typical residential homes, heating and cooling costs can account for almost half of a total monthly energy bill. Those with units that are older than 10 years old should consider replacing them with an Energy Star compliant system. This simple money saving strategy alone can save a homeowner upwards of 30% or more on annual heating and cooling costs. For the absolute best in seasonal energy efficiency, few other types of HVAC systems can compare ones that are fully Energy Star compliant.

Replacing Equipment

When it comes to replacing a central heating or cooling system here are a few other useful money saving tips worth considering. For example, anytime equipment requires frequent and costly repairs or energy bills are steadily on the rise it may be time to replace your existing system. In addition, when replacing equipment always select energy-efficient systems that meet smart energy saver standard programs or that offer rebate programs or other standard rebates. Many homeowners are surprised to find that this can help offset the cost of replacing an entire HVAC system. While high-efficiency systems can be more expensive initially, the cost will almost always be offset and paid back over time in the form of lower annual energy costs.

Annual Inspections

Finally, regular maintenance can be extremely helpful in preventing future heating and cooling system related problems. Work with an experienced and knowledgeable team of professional HVAC technicians to ensure that your system is properly maintained year-round. Having annual inspections of your system and occasional cleanings can ensure that it lasts longer and performs better. Springtime is the perfect time to check your heating system for possible failure. Contact Alpine Heating And Cooling today to learn more about Mount Vernon Washington heating and cooling services that get results.