Your questions answered: HVAC FAQs. No matter what your HVAC questions are, the experts at Ocean Air Conditioning in Orange County have answers. Whether you have questions about picking new HVAC equipment to best practices on care and maintenance, we can help. Our online FAQs answers offer a rapid response for your convenience, but if you want to know more on any topic, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 949-525-9119. Why does my home comfort system need regular maintenance? Just like you need to take your car in to the shop for routine tune-ups, such as oil changes or inspecting potential problems, your home comfort system should get the same kind of attention. Routine maintenance by a trained technician provides various benefits to your HVAC equipment, which can help your systems perform efficiently and prevent costly breakdowns. Where can I find prices for Lennox products? Call Ocean Air Conditioning at 949-525-9119 to receive a quote on Lennox equipment. What is two-stage heating? Two-stage heating enables the furnace to heat at two levels of output: high for cold winter days and low for mild ones. Approximately 80 percent of the time, your home’s heating requirements can be met when the furnace is left on the low setting, allowing your two-stage unit to run for longer periods of time. Two-stage units also give more even heat distribution, fewer temperature swings, quiet operation, increased air filtration and energy efficiency. What is Precise Comfort™ technology? Lennox’s Precise Comfort™ technology is an operating and control system that enables a furnace to adjust heat and airflow by very small amounts, as low as a 1 percent change. The system is automatic and works similar to cruise control, making adjustments gradually to meet your comfort demands with energy efficiency. Will my new furnace work differently than my old one? Depending on how old your previous furnace was, you could experience a host of differences. Furnaces today are designed to offer more even and efficient heating than ever before. Modern furnaces also better regulate temperature and air flow, moving more air over the heat exchanger than older furnaces. Additionally, new furnaces are created to work with other high-efficiency HVAC products, such as air conditioners. The air conditioner blowers give your heating system an extra bump so it can deliver cool air around your home efficiently. Special features like variable speed motors will also help decrease noise associated with operating your equipment and easily meet your family’s airflow needs. What is the energy efficiency standard for air conditioners? The Department of Energy recently boosted the minimum efficiency levels for air conditioners, heat pumps and packaged units manufactured after Jan. 1, 2015, since heating and cooling contributes significantly to a home’s total energy usage. The requirements vary by region, so call Ocean Air Conditioning for the efficiency standards for Orange County. How can I reduce my energy costs? Lennox carries a variety of HVAC products with high efficiency ratings, which can help reduce the amount of energy they require to operate. Aside from selecting products that have received Energy Star® certification or achieved high SEER ratings for air conditioners or AFUE ratings for furnaces, you can think through the following: Maintenance – ensuring your system gets regular maintenance by a trained technician can keep your system working at its best performance. Zoning – zoning systems permit you to only heat or cool only certain areas of your home, so you won’t have to pay to heat or cool spaces that you don’t usually use. Programmable thermostats – using a programmable thermostat allows you to set the temperature in your home based on your schedule. They can be programed to give you the comfort you desire when you’re home, and increase or decrease the temperature while you’re gone, helping you save on heating and cooling costs. Why should I buy a Lennox product? There are many reasons to choose Lennox, but the top three are: You know and trust the name – Lennox is recognized around the world for its quality home comfort products. Innovation and high quality – Lennox is an industry leader, offering a complete line of innovative solutions for your home comfort needs. Commitment to excellence – We are dedicated to providing customers not only quality products, but also quality service. You can trust Lennox dealers, like those of us at Ocean Air Conditioning, to help you find the right system for your home, expertly install it, and keep it working smoothly every time. How can I improve my home’s indoor air quality? Improving your home’s indoor air quality starts with four basic strategies: Eliminate – poor indoor air quality leaves your home filled with air pollutants floating around your home, so to improve IAQ, the first step is to get rid of as many pollutants as possible. You can easily do this is by cleaning and vacuuming at least once a week, regularly washing linens and storing cleaning products safely. Ventilate – proper insulation is great for keeping your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer, but it also makes it difficult for airborne pollutants to escape. Products like our Healthy Climate® ventilation system help swap out stale air for fresh, filtered outside air. Clean – good ventilation and frequent cleaning are a start, but Healthy Climate® air filters, germicidal lights and PureAire™ purification systems take your IAQ to the next level by holding microscopic particles, killing germs and removing particles and germs while destroying chemical vapors. Monitor – programmable thermostats will help you control the humidity levels and temperature to help prevent particles and germs from piling up and keep your home comfortable. How do I know which indoor air quality product will work best for my home? Our Healthy Solution Finder lets you pick details specific to your family and home and will help you find equipment best suited to meet your needs. You may also consult with Ocean Air Conditioning pros who can make a recommendation based on their evaluations of your home and existing indoor comfort system. How does an air conditioner work? Many homeowners believe that air conditioners make your home cooler, but it actually removes the heat from your house, sending the hot air outside. That hot air goes across a cold indoor coil where refrigerant in the lines sends the heat to the coil in your outdoor unit, releasing the hot air outside. This cycle continues until the indoor temperature reaches the temperature you set on your thermostat. What is the minimum energy efficiency standard for air conditioners in my state? Due to the amount of energy used by heating and cooling systems, the Department of Energy (DOE) hiked up the minimum efficiency levels for air conditioners, heat pumps and packaged units manufactured after January 1, 2015. These levels are determined by region and carry varying requirements based on your location. Ocean Air Conditioning can answer any questions you may have regarding these minimum requirements and let you know what choices are available when you’re searching for a replacement system. How can I confirm the model and serial numbers for my cooling unit? These numbers are located on a nameplate or sticker that is near your system’s service panel. The sticker should be white with black letters and have both of these numbers located near the top of the sticker. M/N signifies model number while S/N is your serial number. What size equipment do I need for my home? There are a handful of ways to determine what size system is the best fit for your home, but the most reliable way to determine the right size system is by having your local Ocean Air Conditioning technician come out and perform a load calculation. This calculation considers your home’s: square footage, insulation value, amount of insulation, and a variety of other factors. Can frost, ice, dirt or other debris keep the outdoor unit of my cooling system from operating effectively? The short answer is “Yes.” Dirt and other debris can hinder your system’s ability to work efficiently. For heat pumps, it is normal to have frost or ice on them during the winter, but they also include defrost controls to ensure they work efficiently in that type of weather. What is two-stage cooling? Two-stage cooling means that your cooling unit has two levels of operation. When summer is in its hottest weeks, the high setting kicks in, and when it’s cooler or more mild, the low setting gets the job done. Usually, the lower setting will take care of your cooling needs, but even when the high setting kicks in, you may not realize it because it can generate such even temperatures for your comfort. This also means a quieter cooling system, greater efficiency and enhanced humidity control. Why is my cooling unit freezing up? When your cooling unit freezes up, there are a number of reasons why it could be doing so. The most frequent reasons include: dirty filters, low refrigerant, a dirty evaporative coil and a faulty blower motor or relay. A dirty filter is something you can fix as a homeowner, but the others need to be done by a professional like those at Ocean Air Conditioning. Contact them at 949-525-9119 with any further questions you may have. What is the best thermostat to use for my cooling system? Identifying the best thermostat for your cooling system comes with a lot to think through. That’s why it’s nice to have such a wide variety of choices from Ocean Air Conditioning. Whether you’re searching for a programmable or non-programmable thermostat or want to join the smart home trend, there are a number of thermostats that you have to select from. Some thermostats will depend on what type of heating and cooling system you have, but the team at Ocean Air Conditioning will be able to help determine what options are best for your needs and your budget. What is a heat pump? Heat pumps can be a little confusing due to their name, but they actually take care of both your heating and cooling needs all year. When it’s hot outside it works like an air conditioner in that it removes heat from your home, but when it cools off, the process gets turned around and it collects heat from outside and brings it inside. Heat pumps are also very efficient, and may produce up to two or three times more heat than the energy it uses. When replacing the outdoor unit, should the indoor unit also be replaced? Of course we suggest you also replace your indoor system, but this is why: All outdoor cooling systems have a matching indoor unit that they are intended to work with to ensure efficient performance. When they aren’t paired with the other piece as a total system, efficiency can suffer. As with many products, advancements have brought about newer, more efficient ways of doing things. Heating and cooling systems are no different. These developments most importantly include greater heating and cooling efficiency, but also consist of improved air handling, filtering and noise pollution reduction to name a few. Heating and cooling systems that are more than 10-15 years old normally need to be replaced. Not only do they feature outdated technology, but they are also less efficient than more recent models. Buying a new indoor unit at the same time means you’ll have a matched system to provide you with better comfort and efficiency for years to come. How do I know my solar HVAC system is performing to its maximum potential? The communication module on your SunSource® Home Energy System sends the system’s performance records for each module to a website. You can visit this website to view the system’s status, energy production and environmental benefits. The site also shows real time updates of carbon offsets. Do I need an Internet connection to use the SunSource® communication module? Yes, an Internet connection is needed for you to take advantage of the online monitoring system, which includes viewing energy production and environmental benefit information. The system’s performance-monitoring website is maintained by an independent third party, Enphase Energy Inc., and the monitoring service is provided at no cost for five years. Do I need to clean my solar modules? In most areas, rain will be enough to keep the solar modules clean. If you live in a dusty or industrial area, periodically spraying the modules with water may help improve performance. However, detergents and high-pressure hoses should never be used to clean solar modules. What is the best thermostat for my home comfort system? The best thermostat for you depends on your heating and cooling equipment. Ocean Air Conditioning has programmable and nonprogrammable thermostats that can help enhance the efficiency of your HVAC systems. Check out our available products or contact us at 949-525-9119 to learn more. How can I control my energy bills? Heating and cooling can represent a significant chunk of your utility costs. The innovative and high efficiency heating and air conditioning products available from Lennox® can help reduce these costs. If you’re searching for a new heating and/or cooling system, look for products with high SEER ratings for air conditioners and AFUE ratings for furnaces. SEER and AFUE are a measure of equipment efficiency, and the higher the number, the more efficient the product. Besides purchasing a new home comfort system, consider these other factors: 1. Is your product regularly maintained? Whether it’s a furnace or air conditioner, HVAC systems will opperate more efficiently after regular maintenance checks. 2. Do you need a zoning system? If there are parts of your home that are rarely used, a zoning system will allow you to heat or cool only the commonly used areas of your house. 3. Are you taking advantage of a programmable thermostat? According to the U.S. Department of Energy, programmable thermostats can reduce your heating costs by up to 35 percent, and your cooling costs by up to 25 percent. What are the benefits of zoning systems? Zoning your home allows you you the the comfort of sectioning portions of your home and control the thermostat differently in each part of your home. Zoning tends to be ideal for when you have parts of your residence that are seldom used or when you and your family are often in disagreement of the perfect temperature for the house. Zoning systems are nearly silent and efficient, enabling you to have more control over the comfort of your home. Find out more about the zoning equipment available from Ocean Air Conditioning.