Originally published in March 2017, updated in March 2020.
The air inside your home can harbor a variety of pollutants that compromise its breathability, causing discomfort and often compounding asthma and allergy symptoms. And the more well-sealed your home, the higher the level of airborne pollutants can be since these particles — which include dust, dust mites, pollen, pet dander, and smoke from cooking or cigarettes — are trapped inside your home, building up over time. Add to these particulates various microorganisms such as biologic particulates, bacteria and viruses, and you have a veritable petri dish of unhealthy substances that can invade your home.
Thanks to modern air purification technology, indoor air quality issues such as these can be easily corrected. The current crop of air quality solutions includes space age products that bring the technology of the future to your home today. By combining the right HVAC system components, you can create a multiple-step system that helps ensure that every type of indoor pollutant is addressed and handled in the appropriate manner: either by removal or destruction.
Your Palm Shores, Florida, home deserves the best HVAC functions to keep you comfortable and reduce operating expenses. The latest tech features in HVAC systems offer increased efficiency, more comfort, and enhanced durability. If you plan to shop for a new climate control solution for your home, these are the best technological HVAC features to look for in your next system.
Geothermal Heat Pump
Geothermal heat pumps have been around since the 1940’s but didn’t receive wide acceptance in the United States at that time. However, these systems have since gained popularity in the U.S. HVAC market.
Compared to traditional HVAC units, geothermal systems are up to four times more efficient at heating and cooling your space. The technology uses heat from underground to warm and cool your home, and experts consider it more environmentally friendly than classic HVAC systems.
If your area has the potential for geothermal energy, consider harnessing the earth’s heat to make your home cool and comfortable while cutting utility bills.
With the adoption of the Internet of Things and commercialization of AI and 5G, smart homes are gradually becoming a reality. One advantage of smart homes is that you can control every internet-capable device from your mobile phone. If you have a smart thermostat, you can control your home’s temperature settings remotely from your smartphone or the web.
Old HVAC units can be noisy, and this affects your comfort when the unit is operating. Newer systems feature improved sound muffling and quieter components. Less noise means your HVAC unit will be less of a distraction when you want to sleep or relax.
Motion-Activated Air Conditioning
Zoning and geo-fencing are also a desirable upgrades for people who use smart thermostats. Zoning allows you to have individual temperature zones in different parts of your home. Geo-fencing will trigger your HVAC system to regulate the indoor temperature to a pre-set temperature when you’re within a certain distance of your home.
At Ellington Air Conditioning & Heat, we are committed to providing you with the latest HVAC systems to increase comfort, improve efficiency, and reduce energy costs. Call us today for more information.
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Many people think that the purpose of insulating attics and walls is to keep their Satellite Beach home warm during cold weather. However, thermal barriers also keep buildings cool in hot weather. Adequate amounts of insulation reduce the load on heating and air conditioning equipment, increase comfort and improve energy efficiency.
The Department of Energy defines how much insulating material is needed to keep homes warm in winter and cool in summer according to climate zones in the U.S. Here are ways to evaluate whether you have enough to keep your Florida home cool.
Thermal material is rated by R-value, which describes how well a material resists the transfer of heat. Higher R-values have better thermal resistance, which reduces the amount of heat that leaves or enters your home. In Florida , seven southern counties, including Miami, Palm Beach and Broward, require a minimum of R-30 for the attic. For the rest of the state, a minimum of R-38 is recommended.
Check Attic R-Values
Insulating the attic is the best way to prevent heat exchange. Roofs are exposed to many hours of sunlight, which can raise roof temperatures to 180 degrees F. This heat radiates down through the ceiling into the living space. If the insulating material is below the joists in your attic, you probably need to add more. Experts recommend covering the joists with a thermal barrier.
Examine Utility Bills
High cooling bills often indicate too little attic insulating material. If levels are adequate, make sure the attic and other spaces in the building envelope are well sealed. Holes and gaps reduce energy efficiency and can increase the load on your air conditioner.
The heating, ventilation and air conditioning experts at Ellington Air Conditioning & Heat can evaluate the R-value of existing attic thermal material to see if you have enough. If you don’t, we install several types of attic insulating material designed to keep your house cool. We also look for leaks in ducts and the building shell.
For more information about installing insulation in your attic, saving energy and improving comfort, call the experts at Ellington Air Conditioning & Heat in Brevard County at (321) 222-6718 or (305) 824-2265 at our Marathon office.
The ductwork in your Rockledge, Florida, home plays a key role in your comfort. Here’s how to keep them performing optimally:
Average Lifespan of a Ductwork System
Most duct systems are good for about 15 years. If your ducts are older, you may want an assessment or replacement before they cause trouble. Ailing ducts can create hot and cold spots and cause drafts. Older systems can even start to collapse in sections.
Impact of Dirty Ducts on Utility Bills
If your ducts are leaky, up to 30 percent of your heated and cooled air can be lost through holes, cracks and loose joints. These leaks can often be sealed. However, if the damage is extensive, duct replacement might be the only solution.
Ductwork and Indoor Air Quality
Ducts can harbor all manner of airborne contaminants. Unless your home is sufficiently ventilated, these toxic particles can pollute the air you breathe. You might experience nausea, fatigue, dizziness, headaches and other flu-like symptoms whenever you come indoors.
Dirty Ducts Can Impede Airflow
Over time, ducts acquire a buildup of dust and dirt. Even a small coating of this buildup can restrict airflow and overwork your system. Overworking shortens the life of your HVAC and makes utility bills go up.
How to Keep Ducts in Good Condition
- Change HVAC air filters.
- Vacuum the vents and the area right behind the grille.
- Ensure that nothing is blocking the vents.
How Often Should I Schedule Duct Cleaning?
Most HVAC contractors suggest duct cleaning and sealing every three to five years. If you have pets, you might want to schedule duct cleaning more often.
The accomplished service technicians at Ellington Air Conditioning & Heat will inspect, clean and seal your ducts using state-of-the-art tools and technology. Call us at (321) 222-6718 to learn more.
Heat pumps are ideal for heating and cooling in Florida. Instead of having to maintain both an air conditioner and furnace, heat pumps provide both heating and cooling in one unit. They are extremely energy-efficient, reducing heating and cooling bills by up to 75% depending on the type of system you choose. Proper installation is crucial to getting the best performance from any new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. Here are important facts about new heat pump installations.
Heat Pump Technology
There are several types of heat pump systems, including air-source, geothermal or ground-source and water-source. They operate on the same principles of refrigeration that air conditioners and refrigerators do. Refrigerant circulating through coils is compressed to create a high-temperature gas. It is routed through a condenser coil, causing it to lose heat and liquefy. It then passes through an expansion valve. Here, both temperature and pressure drop. As it flows through the evaporator coil, it picks up heat and boils. The hot liquid is passed to the compressor, and the cycle repeats.
Unlike standard HVAC units that require fuel to generate heat, these devices use energy to move heat from one place to another. Simply flipping a switch reverses the flow of refrigerant. Warm air is extracted from your home during the summer and transferred outdoors. During the winter, heat is extracted from either the outside air, earth or a water source and routed indoors.
A variable-speed inverter compressor increases efficiency. Unlike standard units that operate at 100% capacity, variable speed motors operate according to heating and cooling needs. During cooler times of day, they may operate at less than 50% capacity, which saves energy. When summer temperatures rise, the unit powers up to keep interiors cool. They are also better at controlling humidity, an important factor in the humid environment of Florida. The result is that you stay more comfortable using less energy.
For every kilowatt of energy consumed, air-source systems generate approximately 3 KW of thermal energy. Energy efficiency for the heating cycle is described as the coefficient of performance. For cooling, units are rated by the Energy Efficiency Ratio, the ratio of heat removed compared to the amount of energy used to operate the system. These systems use energy to operate the compressor and motors. However, the energy used to condition the air comes from an existing heat source, such as the air, earth or water.
Proper Heat Pump Installation
Experts in the HVAC industry agree that proper installation is of utmost importance. A unit that is too small will not be able to heat and cool effectively. The system may run for longer periods of time, break down more often and have a shorter service life. An over sized unit may cycle off before it has removed humidity. Both undersized and over sized units use more fuel to operate. In both cases, indoor comfort is affected.
According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology, improper installation can increase energy consumption by as much as 30%. Improper sizing, inadequate ductwork, improper refrigerant charge and poor airflow are significant factors that affect performance.
The Air Conditioning Contractors of America’s standards for sizing and installation of residential and commercial HVAC systems are used by reliable contractors. Quality installation includes selection of proper equipment, correct system design, completion of a building load calculation for sizing and owner education about proper operation of the unit.Sizing is not based only on square footage. It also examines other factors, including:
- Building orientation.
- Local climate.
- Number of doors and windows.
- Amount of insulation.
- Number of occupants per room.
- Building construction materials.
The Ellington Air Conditioning & Heat Advantage
At Ellington Air Conditioning & Heat, we pay close attention to customer satisfaction and comfort. Our NATE-certified technicians are factory-trained to bring you the most technologically advanced installations, repairs and maintenance. We use industry standards for new installations. Our years of serving customers in Brevard and Monroe counties means that we will be there for you if you need follow-up services. We offer annual maintenance plans and scheduled repairs to keep your equipment running at peak efficiency.
For more information about a new heat pump installation, call (321) 222-6718 in Brevard County and (305) 824-2265 for service in the Middle and Lower Keys.
The 2019-2020 Florida influenza season is here, and there have already been close to 30 outbreaks of the virus. Residents in Brevard County, along with the Middle and Lower Keys, should strongly consider a proactive approach to help reduce their risk of getting the flu. Air purification has been proven to destroy cold and flu germs, and it also improves any home’s overall indoor air quality. Some Florida homeowners have already turned to a whole-home UV air purifier.
Air Purification Collects Dangerous Particles
Your indoor air quality can easily become compromised by a mixture of contaminants. Some of the most dangerous particles include dust, smoke, soot, allergens, viruses and bacteria. When these particles enter your lungs, they can cause health issues such as respiratory diseases, asthma and even an increased risk of lung cancer.
UV Light Treatments Kill Bacteria
Air purification is performed with the assistance of special ultra-violet lights. Bacteria, viruses, mildew and mold are all bad for your health, but these harmful particulates do a great job of hiding. In fact, most people are completely unaware that they’re inhaling a variety of impurities in their home.
Platinum PCO Air Purifiers Are The Gold Standard
UV lights on their own can do a significant amount to clean up your indoor air quality. But for the healthiest air quality possible, it’s wise to invest in an air purifier that offers UV light and Platinum PCO (photo catalytic oxidation) technology. With this combination, bacteria and viruses are completed transformed and destroyed.
Are you interested in making your indoor air healthy and minimizing the potential for illnesses in your family? Visit the air purification section of our website to learn how you can save $100 on a Platinum PCO UV air purifier. You can also reach us by phone at (321) 222-6718 in Brevard County or (305) 824-2265 in the Middle and Lower Keys.