Proudly serving the Sacramento area since 1981

Author: JRHeating

3 Reasons Your Home Has AC Hot Spots

Air conditioning during the summer can be a great relief, especially if you’re stuck inside. Central air conditioning systems offer the promise of efficient, easy-to-use, and low maintenance cooling, but what happens when your unit isn’t cooling consistently? If your home has hot spots, there are several possible causes, each with their own unique solutions.

Continue reading

The Top Questions to Ask Before Hiring an HVAC Professional

Do you need to hire a new HVAC contractor? If this is your first time hiring a heating and air conditioner professional, take a look at some of the questions you should ask in order to find the right person for the job.

Does the Contractor Have the Correct License?

While each state differs somewhat in professional rules and regulations, every local area has some form of licensing procedure for HVAC contractors. Why is a license important and what does it show the customer? An HVAC license:

  • Demonstrates the contractor’s experience. An inexperienced contractor with little hands-on or on-the-job training won’t have the ability to accurately evaluate, repair, or replace complicated HVAC systems.
  • Demonstrates the contractor’s expertise. While some states don’t have specific educational requirements for licensure, a licensing exam combined with necessary time spent on the job, means the contractor has experience in the HVAC area.
  • Demonstrates the contractor’s commitment. Anyone can call themselves a heating or air conditioning repair contractor. But that doesn’t mean they’re a true expert. Completion of the licensing process shows the contractor’s commitment to the HVAC industry.

Even though a license signals the contractor’s professionalism, it isn’t the only thing to look for. Along with a license, a professional in this field should provide specific services — such as in-person initial estimates.

Does the Contractor Provide an In-Person Estimate?

HVAC systems are complex appliances that require in-person, hands-on inspection and evaluation. While an experienced professional may have an idea of what’s wrong with your heater or air conditioner based on a verbal description, an over-the-phone diagnosis or estimate alone may point to:

  • Lack of knowledge. A skilled HVAC contractor knows that a full in-person inspection or evaluation is necessary to correctly diagnose the problem and create a repair plan. Proceed with extreme caution if the contractor claims they don’t need to see the system.
  • A scam. Never give a contractor credit card or bank information over the phone (or via email) if they haven’t already come to your home to inspect the system. A true professional will conduct an in-person evaluation and provide you with a written estimate first.
  • Absence of professionalism. A contractor who can’t take the time to come to your home for an HVAC estimate lacks the professional you should require.

If your home’s HVAC system needs a repair or replacement, the contractor should schedule an appointment, arrive on time, discuss the issue fully with you, inspect the existing area or appliance, and provide you with a full written estimate for all costs.

What Services Does the Contractor Offer?

A professional HVAC contractor should offer specialized heating and air conditioning services. Specific services vary by contractor. These may include:

  • Routine maintenance. The HVAC contractor may offer pre- or post-season system check-ups, inspections, and cleanings. These services help your system to run smoothly and efficiently.
  • Repairs. The contractor should have the experience and expertise to diagnose and make repairs as needed. These can include anything from a broken blower to a refrigerant line failure.
  • Installations. Most HVAC contractors install heating and air conditioning equipment. If you need a new system, the professional should have the ability to evaluate your home’s needs, suggest a new heater or AC system, and complete the installation.

If the contractor in question doesn’t offer the services your home needs, doesn’t have the knowledge necessary to evaluate problem issues, or offers a broad array of general construction services (without technicians who specialize in HVAC inspections, repairs, or replacements), continue your search.

Do you need HVAC services or a new installation? Contact the proven professionals at JR Putnam Plumbing, Heating and Air for more information.

Programmable and Smart Thermostat Mistakes to Avoid

A change of 10 degrees for eight hours a day can save you up to 10 percent in heating and AC costs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. A programmable or smart thermostat makes it easier to stay on top of temperature changes — if you use the device correctly. Take a look at the top thermostat mistakes homeowners should watch out for.

Continue reading

A Few Reasons To Join An HVAC Service Club

Whether you have a brand-new HVAC system or one that has been in your home for years, regular maintenance is important. A professional that looks over and maintains the system regularly will ensure that it is running at top efficiency to save money.

One way to ensure you don’t forget to have the system serviced is to buy a maintenance agreement, sometimes called a service club or service agreement. When you are part of this plan, the company keeps track of your maintenance schedule and contacts you to let you know when it’s time for a service.

When you buy a service agreement, you make monthly payments to the company. These payments will cover the cost of routine maintenance and provide a discount on parts and labor for any other repairs needed. Here are a few more benefits you receive when you are part of a service club.

Continue reading

Survive the Summer With These 8 Tips

While most people look forward to the warmth summer brings, you may be likely dreading the season. California already experiences warm weather. But summers can turn brutal and dry in an instant. You don’t have to suffer through the heat, though. With the guide below, you can survive summer — and even enjoy the season a little too.

Continue reading

3 Things to Know About Smart Water Heaters

To a large extent, the basic building blocks of a home plumbing system have remained largely unchanged with the passing decades. Yet advances in technology have allowed for much innovation when it comes to plumbing appliances. Many of these advances promote greater efficiency, and hence lower energy and water bills. 

Continue reading

3 Ways You Lose Money If You Avoid AC Maintenance

An HVAC technician doesn’t just provide the labor and parts needed when he or she comes out to service your AC unit. He or she also brings expertise and provides great value for money by helping your AC unit stay at the top of its game. This can improve the overall cost-effectiveness of your AC system in a variety of ways, such as increased energy efficiency.

Unfortunately, many homeowners either don’t get around to scheduling regular AC maintenance or even intentionally avoid it for one reason or another. Here are three ways that you can lose money if you avoid scheduling system maintenance on a regular basis with a professional HVAC technician.


1. Poorly Running Unit

When left to its own devices for years at a time, an AC unit can’t run as well as it was designed to. Typically, it will become less efficient, work harder, and run more loudly with less effect. In fact, the unit’s efficiency may decrease by five percent throughout the year if you don’t keep it clean and well-maintained.

Not only does the reduced efficiency mean you’ll have to pay higher energy bills, but working harder means the unit will wear out faster. This means you’re losing more money in wear and tear and you’ll eventually have to spend even more on replacement parts. You may even have to replace the entire unit more frequently if you don’t bother with regular maintenance.


2. Repair Costs and Compounded Damage

If your AC unit’s coil freezes over and you do a quick internet search on the problem, you may discover that you can simply turn the unit off and wait for it to thaw out. But if you start using the unit again immediately, you’re ignoring the root of the problem. The coil can freeze up again at any time, which could be disastrous if the freeze travels to the compressor.

In this scenario, a simple problem that may have been caused by lack of airflow or low coolant levels can transform into an extremely expensive problem when the compressor (a very expensive part of the unit) fails. This is just one example of how small HVAC issues, some of which you may not even notice on your own, can become much larger if not tended to.


3. Missed Opportunities for Improvement 

When your professional HVAC technician comes out to maintenance your unit, he or she may notice issues that are the result of obsolescence or some other issue rather than of wear and tear. For example, you may have old, uninsulated ducts. Insulating them could help you save money on your energy bills. Or your unit may be surrounded by weeds, blocking the airflow.

Or your technician might even recommend a new type of smart thermostat to help fine-tune your heating and cooling settings. If you avoid regular maintenance, you may not always notice these opportunities yourself, and therefore you’ll continue to lose money on less efficient heating and cooling. Having another pair of eyes and an expert’s opinion can make all the difference.

As you can see, professional maintenance can pay for itself in a variety of ways. This includes not only improved efficiency, but a more convenient quietly running unit as well as reduced repair and replacement costs, expert opinions on improving efficiency, and peace of mind that all is as it should be with your HVAC system and that your unit is unlikely to fail suddenly.

If you’d like to take advantage of the myriad benefits available from a professional maintenance visit, get in touch with JR Putman Plumbing, Heating & Air today and schedule an appointment. We offer maintenance and repair services for not only AC units but furnaces, plumbing and drains, water heaters, and more.

© All Rights Reserved.