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What’s the Best Cooling System for My Home?

Are you considering making an upgrade to your home’s cooling system, but aren’t sure what is the best choice for your home? If it’s been awhile since you last purchased an A/C, you may be pleasantly surprised with the current, more energy efficient, options available to homeowners.

If energy savings is important to you, then investing in an energy-efficient system is ideal as it will keep energy expenses down long-term. There are measurements that can help you determine the rated efficiency for different model, such as the Season Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). A SEER rating of 13 or 14 is the mandatory federal minimum, and the rating can go up into the 20’s. Simply put, the higher the SEER number, the more efficient your system will be.

Below we have compiled a handy guide that will help you determine the best cooling system for your home’s needs.

    Split System Central Air

If your home already has ductwork installed, it might make more sense to go with a traditional central air system over another type of cooling system. Generally, central air systems can utilize the home’s existing forced air heating system ductwork. Another benefit of central air is that, outside of the ductwork, you will barely notice the presence of the cooling system. Central air systems offer superb humidity control; as variable speed fans allow for dehumidification while running.

    Ductless Air Conditioning

Ductless systems are modern, versatile, effective, and energy efficient. They also offer excellent humidity control and are easy to install. Be mindful, though, that one unit will not most likely not cool an entire home.

These systems work especially well for cooling sunrooms, garages, additions, and other areas that cannot easily have ductwork added. Another benefit of these systems is that because there is no ductwork, there is less chance for accumulation of dust and debris to get distributed throughout your home. There are also no filters to change, but you will need to periodically clean the unit.

Ductless systems rely on a heat pump, and therefore they don’t experience leaks that commonly affects ductwork, so they’re quite energy-efficient. These systems allow you to take total control of home comfort, by enabling you to direct specific cooling needs in different areas of your home. This helps you to save on energy bills as well, since you can keep cooling to a minimum in rooms that aren’t occupied.

   Variable-Speed Systems

Inverter or Variable Speed Systems operate at varying speeds, slowing down and speeding to maintain a constant temperature. This keeps your room more comfortable while also saving on energy usage. This is the opposite of how a central air system works with frequent starting and stopping.

Ready to learn more? Call us today!

AB&B is a Carrier authorized factory dealer and we have an excellent line of cooling systems available for your home. We have competitive pricing and easy financing options, and we offer free in home estimates. We’ve been serving customers in the Cedar Creek and surrounding areas since 1989, making us the experts to call when you’re in the market for cooling solutions for your Texas home. Call us today to find out more (512) 292-1334.

 

5 Simple Secrets to Totally Rocking Your Spring Cleaning

Spring is just around the corner, and this new change of season is the perfect time to start thinking about giving your home a much-needed deep cleaning. After snuggling up inside your Austin home this winter, you may find that you’ve started to accumulate a lot of stuff, including dust, dander, and whatever else you may have dragged in from the outdoors. Though you may dread the annual spring cleaning, we’ve put together some simple tips that will help make your cleaning a success.

Top 5 Spring Cleaning Tips

Are you ready to totally rock your spring cleaning this month? Here are just 5 simple tips that you can use to make sure your home is clean and healthy for you and your family:

spring-cleaning-tips

Want more fun home improvement tips? Each month we update our blog with great information on how to keep your home clean, healthy, and free of repairs. From helpful tips for HVAC efficiency to information on how to prepare for seasonal changes, we cover everything that Austin homeowners need to know about home improvement. Follow our blog to stay up-to-date with the latest from AB&B Air Conditioning and Heating.

 

 

Don’t Make These Little Mistakes with Your Weatherproofing

 

Weatherproofing your home is key for keeping you and your family comfortable throughout the changing seasons. Proper weatherproofing ensures that your home is not wasting energy nor overworking your heating and cooling systems. No matter what time of year, be sure that you’re not making these common mistakes with your weatherproofing:

Ignoring Drafts

Drafts can be easy to ignore because they tend to be isolated to certain areas in your home, but these small air leaks in your home can end up costing you big money. When you notice a draft in your home, whether it’s from a window, exterior door, attic, or near an exterior utility cut-out, you should tend to it immediately. Caulking or adding weather-stripping to these areas can go far in keeping unwanted air from coming in as well as keeping the warm or cool air from your HVAC system from escaping.

If you don’t know where drafts may be located in your home, but you have a sneaking suspicion that your house has them, light a candle and slowly walk it around the perimeter of your home’s interior. Concentrate your efforts around windows and doors. If the candle’s flame flickers, that’s a pretty good indication that you’ve got a draft that needs to be sealed appropriately.

Skimping on Weatherproofing Materials

Not buying enough weatherproofing materials is a common mistake. You don’t want to skimp on the caulking or weather-stripping to save a few bucks. If these areas are not properly sealed, or the material spread too thinly, they will not protect your home from drafts. Attic insulation is another area that you don’t want to skimp on. Insulation in this area can cause heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer, which is exactly the opposite of what you need to make your home comfortable.

Before starting your project, take proper inventory of how many drafts you have in your home, where the drafts occur, and what materials you’ll need to combat them. Measure the length of areas needing to be covered, and be sure to check how much coverage your materials provide. Generally, you can seal about two average sized windows with one tube of caulking material. Also, purchase the highest quality material you can afford. If you purchase high quality weatherproofing materials from the start, they will protect your home against drafts for years to come.

Putting it Off

In general, putting off weatherproofing your home will only end up costing you a lot of wasted home energy over time. If you’re putting it off because you don’t want to invest the money, just consider all the energy that is being wasted from drafts coming into your home. Bite the bullet and weather-proof your home; that way, you’ll be guaranteed comfort no matter what the temperature is outdoors.  

Overlooking Your HVAC System

Be sure to take proper care of your HVAC system. An inefficient system will only end up causing you trouble and cause uneven (and uncomfortable) temperature fluctuations in your home. One of the easiest ways to make sure your HVAC system is running smoothly and efficiently is to schedule a maintenance service with our team at AB&B. We are experts in making sure your HVAC system is ready to go up against any type of weather.
Call us today to find out more: Austin: 512-670-8883 | Bastrop: 512-549-4808

4 Indoor Air Quality Tips for Pet Lovers

Do you have pets? Many homes do, and numerous people consider their pets a part of their family. It’s important for pet owners to be mindful of how a pet can affect your home’s air quality. Living with pets can be a great way to keep your mind and body healthy, but don’t forget about the quality of your indoor air!

How to Maintain Healthy Indoor Air Quality as a Pet Owner

One of the most important things to consider in regards to keeping pets and your home’s air quality and is that pets produce dander. What is dander, you ask? Dander is simply extra small particles of skin that flake off from your pet. Contrary to popular belief, pet hair (what makes our fuzzy friends so fuzzy) is not the cause of most pet allergens and air quality problems. It is actually dander that does the most damage. The best way to combat dander is to prevent it from getting out of hand in the first place. These tips can help:

  • Be sure to bathe your pet/s as recommended by your veterinarian. Clean, healthy, skin will prevent excess dander from forming on your pet and accumulating around your home. Also, brush your pet regularly to remove dander and keep their coat healthy. And, don’t forget fresh water. Even though giving your pet unlimited access to fresh water is a given, be sure their water is plentiful, clean and of excellent quality. This will go a long way to ensure that your four legged friend is getting proper hydration, which helps keep their skin soft, meaning less dander in your home.
  • Keep your HVAC System running smoothly by getting regular maintenance performed on your home’s HVAC system. This is essential for excellent air quality and is doubly important for homes with pets, since dander and pet hair can accumulate not only in the air filter, but in other sneaky spots as well. A professionally trained technician can help inform you of any potential concerns before they become a serious problem.
  • Change your HVAC system’s air filter–often! We recommend changing your air filter according to the manufacturer’s directions. Since filters vary, you’ll want to gauge how often you change it depending on what type of filter you have. Check your filter about once a month and change the filter once it appears dirty. If you have a multiple pet household, consider upgrading to a HEPA filter or switching to an air filter that can help control pet dander.
  • Another way to ensure excellent air quality is to have your ducts cleaned by our professionals. Pet dander, dust, and other debris can accumulate in your home’s ductwork. This dirt recirculates through your ductwork (and your home) each time you run your system.

Give us a call today and learn how we can help improve the quality of you and your pets’ home!

 

 

How to Achieve Home Comfort Between Air Conditioner Season & Heat Season

More than half of the utility bill of your home is comprised of heating and cooling costs. The HVAC system uses more energy than any other system. You would want your home to be very comfortable, perfectly warm during the winters and suitably cool during the summers. At the same time, you would also want to keep the energy costs in check. The best way to do this is to make sure that the HVAC system installed in your home is maintained & in fine working condition.

There are many wonderful advantages of having air conditioning and heating. Home air conditioning keeps a home cooler during the summer months than fans. Using fans in a home sometimes just keeps the warm air circulating throughout a home. But with an air conditioner unit you do not have to worry about that problem. Home air conditioners will keep every room in a home nice and cool. Similarly, heating systems keep your home warm and comfortable for not only you, but your children and visitors to your home.

It is best to set home comfort systems at a set temperature this will keep the comfort level of a house consistent throughout the day and night. You do not want to constant change the temperature or turn the unit on and off, this can cause a huge change in your electric bill. Keeping it set on the same temperature will regulate the temperature and your bill.

How to Maintain Your HVAC System

Just as you do with your vehicles or other appliances, you must ensure periodic cleaning and servicing of your heating and air conditioning systems. Ideally, maintenance services must be performed on the system at least twice in a year. Consider these items that you can handle on your own to-do list:

  • Clean your system. The outside unit must be cleaned to prevent the buildup of mold and mildew within the fins.
  • Monitor your air filters. It is most important to clean the air filter on a monthly basis. Your system can have a permanent filter or a disposable one. With use, the filter gets clogged with debris, dust and pollutants, hampering the amount of air moved by the system. This reduces the efficiency of the system even as it increases the energy usage. While a dirty disposal filter can be replaced, the permanent filter should be cleaned thoroughly.
  • Clean your vents. Cleaning the vents is another thing to be done. The buildup of dust and debris blocks the air from reaching your rooms and the indoor air quality suffers. The vents must be dusted or vacuumed every month to keep them free-flowing.
  • Seal leaks. Make sure that all possible places of air leaks in the home are sealed. The attic is a key area for cooling or heat loss and you must see to it that it is properly insulated. The crawlspaces, basement and spaces around the windows and doors should also be checked.
  • Stay up-to-date. If your home has an old HVAC system, you can think about getting it replaced with a new, more efficient, energy star rated system.

Timely repairs and regular maintenance services help you have an efficient HVAC system and enjoy a comfortable home. It is better if you don’t rely on DIY methods to handle the heating and air conditioning issues. You must hire the specialized services of a certified, trained and experienced HVAC professional. To find the leading HVAC companies in our area, you can search online and you’ll find our site among our competitors’. By contacting us, you will get all the information required to help you decide what your system needs this year.