admin, Author at PECO Heating & Cooling

Is Your HVAC System Ready For Hurricane Season?

Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30 and can result in some of the strongest storms on the planet. Hurricanes unleash strong winds, storm surges and a deluge of rain that can ravage homes and communities.

While you know how to prepare your home and family when a hurricane threatens, you should also take precautions to protect your HVAC system. When you understand how to protect your HVAC system before the storm hits and what to do afterwards, you can minimize system damage and help safeguard your family.

Prepare Your HVAC System Before the Hurricane

If your community is in the path of a hurricane (you can sign up for emergency alerts by clicking here), follow these steps to keep your HVAC equipment as safe as possible:

  • Turn off the gas supply to gas furnaces
  • Turn off breakers to your AC or heat pump and indoor air handler or gas furnace
  • Protect outdoor equipment from flying debris
  • Secure your outdoor unit by ensuring bolts are secure and tight. Use hurricane straps when possible.
  • Talk to your dealer about elevating your HVAC system

Survive During the Storm

If you are sheltering at home amid high winds, move your family to a small, windowless room or hallway on the lowest floor. In the event of flooding, ascend to your home’s highest level. However, never climb into a closed attic as you could become trapped by rising flood water. You can use a generator or battery-powered lamps and flashlights to have light even if you lose power.

To stay comfortable while your HVAC system is off, you can take several steps, such as placing a damp kitchen towel around your neck and pulling down the shades to block out sun and heat.

If you’re told to evacuate, don’t delay—evacuate immediately and be certain not to drive around barricades. Also be sure to avoid bridges over fast-moving water.

Stay Safe After the Hurricane

When the hurricane passes, you can safely assess how your home weathered the storm. If you discover water or other storm damage, you may need to replace some of your HVAC equipment. Your home’s insurance provider can help you file a claim.

It’s important that you don’t turn on your HVAC system right after the hurricane passes. Instead, contact your local Lennox® dealer to inspect your system first. An expert can determine which equipment requires repairs or needs to be replaced. 

When hurricane season hits, don’t overlook your home’s HVAC systems. Take the necessary steps to prepare before the storm and ensure your family’s safety after the storm.

The Easiest Way to Get HVAC Filters

Have you noticed that your house is excessively dusty? Are your allergies acting up, giving you itchy eyes or a runny nose? Does your air conditioning seem to be less efficient and not cool enough?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, it’s time to check your air filter! When was the last time you changed the air filter for your heating and cooling system? If you can’t remember, then it’s definitely time. We recommend changing your filter on a monthly basis, which has several benefits. First, it keeps your HVAC system running at optimal efficiency. Instead of having to work harder to push air through a clogged filter, your system can run smoothly through a clean filter. This means your house is cooler when you want it cooler and you don’t have to keep fiddling with the thermostat to get the air conditioning to work harder.

Other Benefits to Changing Your Air Filter

Replacing HVAC Filter

Changing your air filter frequently also maintains the air quality in your home. Indoor air quality is greatly impacted by the air filter; a dirty filter can actually push dust back into your home and is unable to capture new dust. Meanwhile, ensuring that filters are replaced regularly means that the filter can clean the air of your home, helping with allergies and dust buildup

The best part? You don’t have to remember to buy a filter. All you have to do is enroll through PECO with Filter Fetch, a company that auto delivers filters monthly. In these difficult times, the last thing you want to worry about is remembering to change your filter or having to go to the store to buy a filter. Let Filter Fetch take care of it for you! PECO customers even get free shipping on filters by using code C8SV. Get your filters here!

Banish Dust from your Home

Do you HATE dusting? Even people that enjoy cleaning often bemoan the need to constantly dust their house. After dusting, then you have to clean the floors and walls and wherever the dust has spread. The worst part? The dust seems to come back immediately! 

If you hate dusting (does anyone like dusting?), it’s time to consider the culprit. While some accumulation of dust is normal, if it feels like you can’t ever get ahead of the grime, your HVAC filter may be to blame. A dirty filter in your air conditioning pushes dust out into your home and is unable to capture contaminants. It can’t pick up new dust because it’s already too choked with old dust. This not only makes your house dusty, but it also decreases air quality. Improve indoor air quality and cut your cleaning time by making sure to change HVAC filters regularly! 

Dust on the floor in vent

When you have clean filters, your HVAC system can actually help you clean. What!? My air conditioning can help me clean? It’s true! An efficient system with a clean filter can help remove particles from the air. Consider running your fan, especially after dusting, to help circulate air and catch large particles. This will help reduce dust and cut down the hours you need to spend time cleaning! Here are some other suggestions to reduce dust:

  • Keep outdoor areas like patios, driveways, and porches well-swept so you’re not tracking dirt in
  • Keep mats and rugs at entry points so that you can wipe your shoes at the door 
  • Use a filter with a higher MERV rating to capture finer particles 
  • Use a vacuum with HEPA filtration 
  • Consider reducing the upholstered items in your home (carpets, upholstered couches, drapes, pillows) in favor of hard services like hardwood that are easily cleaned and don’t harbor dust 

What are your best tips for beating dust?

PECO: Here for your Comfort and Safety

PECO here for your comfort and safety

When coronavirus first hit the United States, many people put their life on hold. We understand why some people took this pause. With the fear of the virus spreading, some people chose to stock up on groceries and stay at home to prevent catching and passing on the virus. Some may have put home repairs or maintenance on hold so that they wouldn’t come into contact with repairmen.

As the months have gone on, we have all had to adapt to our daily lives to get essential tasks while staying safe. If you do need assistance with your heating and cooling systems, electrical, generators, or other home repairs, please know that PECO can safely help you. 

How We’re Adapting to COVID-19

We want you to know that we take health – both yours and ours – very seriously! At PECO, we want to ensure that our customers and our service technicians stay healthy. There’s no need to live with hot temperatures because of a broken air conditioner or other home issues. Our team can fix the problem while following stringent health protocols! Remember that high temperatures can be dangerous, particularly for children, seniors, and pets. Keep everyone in your home comfortable and safe with a properly working HVAC system. You can count on PECO service technicians to wear proper PPE while on every service visit. Our regulations include:

  • Wearing gloves, facial mask, and shoe covers 
  • Sanitizing our hands before we put on gloves and enter a home 
  • Practicing social distancing 

If you have any questions about how we’re handling COVID-19, please feel free to call (864) 639-2424. The comfort and safety of our customers comes first!

Prepare Your Home for an Elderly Relative

Having an elderly friend or family member come to live with you can be a blessing. Oftentimes grandparents step in to watch children and help around the house in various ways. You get the benefit of spending more time with your friend or family member, and you don’t have to worry about how they are managing on their own. This can be a rich and rewarding experience for everyone involved. 

Of course, you have to move them in first! It’s not as simple as setting up the guest bedroom. You want to make sure that your home is safe and comfortable for your senior relative, and it can be tough to know where to start. 

Prepare Your Home For An Elderly Relative

PECO Heating and Cooling is a family-owned and operated business that knows about keeping relatives comfortable! We take it upon ourselves to make sure that your home is ready for an elderly occupant. First, consider your HVAC system. While extremely hot days can be miserable for many, they can be downright dangerous for older folks who can suffer ill effects. It’s important to have a fully operational air conditioning unit for warm summer days. We can inspect your unit, perform any necessary maintenance and repairs, or even install a new unit. You’ll enjoy the refreshing cool air as well!

Other Things To Consider

Just as hot days should be considered, so should cold ones. As we grow older, many people become less and less able to handle cold weather, which can increase joint and bone pain. We can make sure your furnace or heating unit is fully functioning so you’ll be ready for those cold winter nights. 

Having a properly working HVAC system is crucial to keeping your home within a range of comfortable temperatures. There are other considerations to think about as well, such as what bathroom will be used or how many stairs need to be navigated. Fortunately, PECO can help with many home repair and maintenance tasks around the house as well, such as fixing drywall and painting. 

If you have an elderly relative coming to live with you, PECO can help! Our experienced team will make sure that your home is safe and comfortable for the whole family.

How To Take Care Of Your HVAC Unit

Do you go to the doctor for a yearly checkup? Our bodies need food and water to keep going, rest to recharge us, and professional assistance for checkups and medical matters. Our AC units are the same way! Of course, HVAC units are not people. You don’t have to leave a dinner plate out for the AC. However, you do have to make sure that it gets the right fuel and checkups so that it keeps running. Otherwise, it can wear out on you, leaving you roasting in the summertime and with a big repair bill.

Have you ever been to the doctor about a medical issue and they say “Why did you wait so long to come to the doctor?”. It’s easy to push off procedures or medical appointments, but unfortunately, it can lead to a small issue getting worse. The same goes for your HVAC system. With regular maintenance, it can run well for years. But if you ignore funny smells, odd noises, and reduced performance, there could be an issue with your system that is only getting worse.

How To Take Care Of Your HVAC Unit

Here’s what you can do to take care of your HVAC unit today:

  • Clear a two-foot space around all outdoor units
  • Keep the unit clear of dirt, leaves, falling branches, etc.
  • Purchase and install a high-efficiency pleated air filter

Carefully look at your HVAC ducts for cracks and holes, which can cause a significant loss in heat/coolingWe recommend having an HVAC professional come out to inspect your unit twice a year to make sure your filters have been changed, clean soot off burners, clean the condenser coil, and check the various components of your system including electrical connections, thermostat, indoor and outdoor coils, condensation drain/pump, and more. This regular service can help keep your AC unit running smoothly and alert you if there are any potential issues. PECO’s Planned Maintenance Agreement guarantees you receive this service twice yearly as well as 10% off all repairs, no after-hours charges, and priority service. Contact us today to discuss your AC unit’s checkup!

PECO Heating and Cooling Provides Top-Notch Service

PECO Heating and Cooling works hard to provide top-notch service in HVAC, electrical, plumbing, generators, and home repair. We are a family owned business that takes our work seriously; we want to offer our customers helpful, professional, expert maintenance and repairs so that you are comfortable in your home. You can see what our customers think of us in reviews on GoogleFacebookHomeAdvisor, and Angie’s List.

PECO Heating And Cooling Provides Top Notch Service

First and foremost, we want to thank our customers for taking the time to share reviews of PECO online. Thank you! Your effort lets future customers the different work we have done and your satisfaction. It also gives our employees a boost. We love seeing our customers appreciate different employees for their hard work! If you have received a service from PECO, please leave a review on your preferred platform.

We Are Dedicated To Our Customers

We are proud to say that our hard work and dedication to customers is shown in our numerous 5 star reviews. We are happy to announce that PECO shows a rating of 4.5 or higher on every reviews website! Simply Google PECO and see:

  • 4.8 rating on Google
  • 5 rating on Facebook
  • 4.5 rating on HomeAdvisor
  • 4.5 rating on Angie’s List
  • Here are some recent 5 star reviews:

Top notch experience. The install crew was amazing and exceeded our expectations. Max and his crew were a joy to be around, worked hard and kept us informed throughout the process. Highly recommend to anyone considering work on their heating/cooling system! – Brock Bailey

Great response to our issue. Thank you for taking care of us. Jeremy is a great guy!!! Home town type service. We felt more like family than clients. – ccaracc420

Highly recommend Jeremy! He came out and gave us a second opinion after another company said my AC unit needed $1500 in repairs and recommended we purchase a new unit. Turns out the first company had overcharged my unit with way too much freon causing all the problems! Thanks to Jeremy my unit is working perfectly again and saved me $thousands$. We are very grateful! He is so knowledgeable and explained everything while troubleshooting the issue. PECO is lucky to have him! – Amy Tucker.

If you need home maintenance or repairs, call PECO!

Beat Allergy Season with Clean Air

Do you find yourself sneezing, coughing, or wheezing during certain times of the year? If so, you could be one of more than 50 million Americans who suffer from seasonal allergies. Seasonal allergies can range in symptom severity. Mild symptoms may be a general annoyance, while more severe cases can make you wonder whether you have allergies or an illness.

What Causes Seasonal Allergies?

Seasonal allergies can be triggered by many environmental factors. While seasonal allergies can strike throughout the year, they often affect most people as the weather turns from cool to warm, when plants and trees begin to bloom. During the warmer seasons, different plant species release airborne pollen, which causes an immune response in people with allergies. Histamines and other chemicals get released into the bloodstream, which causes an allergic reaction.

Seasonal Allergy Symptoms

Many pollens can trigger seasonal allergies, but the most common ones include:

Beat Allergy Season With Clean Air
  • Grasses, like Timothy or ryegrass
  • Ragweed
  • Birch
  • Cedar
  • Alder
  • Horse chestnut
  • Willow
  • Poplar
  • Sagebrush
  • Tumbleweed
  • Thistles

Seasonal allergies are commonly traced back to these trees and plants because their pollens are particularly irritating. Warm, windy weather is generally the worst for seasonal allergies because pollen counts rise in warm temperatures, and the wind spreads it far and wide. Common symptoms of seasonal allergies include:

  • Allergic rhinitis: a stuffy or runny nose, nasal irritation
  • Sneezing
  • Watery, itchy eyes
  • Itchy throat
  • Congestion in the ears, throat, and nose
  • Postnasal drip
  • Coughing
  • Headaches

Some types of seasonal allergies can also cause a secondary illness, like:

  • Contact dermatitis
  • Hives
  • Asthma or mild breathing problems
  • Itchy skin, nose, and throat
  • Conjunctivitis

Seasonal allergies can affect people of every age, but they’re especially important to treat in children because they can cause re-occurring earaches and other infections.

What to do for Seasonal Allergies

Thankfully, there are many things you can do to get some relief from seasonal allergies, including:

  • Reducing pollen exposure by staying indoors
  • Avoiding yard work or gardening
  • Washing your hands and showering after you’ve been outdoors
  • Using a pollen mask outside
  • Allergy shots or immunotherapy
  • Oral antihistamines
  • Decongestants
  • Nasal sprays and sinus rinses
  • Plant supplements, like butterbur and spirulina
  • Acupuncture

HEPA Air Filters and UV Lighting

In addition to these methods, keeping the air in your home clean is one of the best and most essential ways to prevent the symptoms of seasonal allergies. The Mayo Clinic recommends always using your air conditioning and high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters in your home. HEPA filters are a type of mechanical air filter that works by forcing air through a fine mesh. This traps small particles that can cause allergies and asthma, like pollen, pet dander, dust mites, and tobacco smoke.  For those with severe allergies, it may also be worthwhile to invest in a whole-house central air purifier.

Installing UV lights throughout the home can also help with seasonal allergies. UV lights eliminate contaminants that can lead to poor air quality, including mold, mildew, fungi, airborne viruses, bacteria, and spores. While UV light doesn’t filter the air, its been shown to play a huge role in secondary allergy prevention, especially when used in combination with HEPA filters.

The best way to prevent seasonal allergy symptoms and stay comfortable year-round is to take a multi-pronged approach. Reducing your exposure outdoors while keeping the air inside your home clean and free of contaminants can greatly reduce your exposure to allergy-causing contaminants. At PECO, we offer several types of HEPA filters, as well as UV lights. Some of our filter options include Lennox 5” HEPA filter, PureAir HEPA filters, and MERV 11, 13, and 16 HEPA filters. Experts are predicting 2020 will be a bad year for allergy sufferers, especially here in the eastern United States. Above-normal rainfall and near-average temperatures are expected to contribute to above-average pollen levels. If you suffer from seasonal allergies, now is the best time to get your home prepared! If you’d like to learn more about installing HEPA filters or UV lighting in your home, give us a call at 864-639-2424.

How to Prolong the Life of Your AC Unit

Whether you’re purchasing a standalone AC unit or a central AC unit, air conditioners are a significant investment – but a worthwhile one! Since AC units can be costly, it’s important to try to extend their life as long as possible. What’s the best way to do that? Simply put, take care of it. Like other types of equipment, air conditioners need care and maintenance. With care, you can expect your unit to last an average of 10-15 years, although some models have been known to make to about 20 with routine maintenance. Here are a few tips to ensure you get the most out of your unit.

Outdoor AC Units

If you have an outdoor AC unit, you should make sure to place it in a cool, shady spot. Being in a cool location (for example, on the shady side of your home) will help the unit work less, which will prolong its lifespan. However, be sure that there isn’t too much grass or debris surrounding it. AC units need ventilation to work properly and keep the air following smoothly. Yard debris can block the vents and make the unit work twice as hard.

How To Prolong The Life Of Your AC Unit

If your unit is in a clear spot, you should check the area around it periodically. While it may have been clear when it was first installed, storms, windy days, or seasonal changes can cause debris to collect. If there are any blockages around the vents, turn the power off and clear them away. It’s also an excellent idea to schedule a regular cleaning and maintenance appointment once or twice a year.

Central AC Units

One of the most important things you can do for your central AC unit is to replace the air filters regularly.   A dirty air filter will make your AC work harder than it needs to – which leads to higher electricity bills, premature repairs, and a shorter lifespan. Air filters should be checked monthly and replaced every 30 – 60 days.

The ducts for your central HVAC system push the conditioned air from the heating and cooling units in your home. Dirty air ducts can lessen the efficiency of your unit. Likewise, leaks, gaps, loose seams, or obstructions in the ducts can allow cool air to escape before it reaches the rooms of your home, which can make the unit work harder to cool your home. Ducts should be inspected regularly and should have adequate insulation.The bottom line is, treat your AC unit well and it will provide many years of cool, comfortable air for you. If it’s been a while since your AC unit has had maintenance, schedule a service call with our expert technicians. We can check the health of your unit, replace filters, clean ducts, and more. We also offer a planned maintenance agreement, the easiest way to keep up with your AC maintenance. We’ll come out twice a year and perform a wide range of maintenance and inspections on your system. You’ll also receive a 10% discount on all repairs, no after-hours charges, and priority service! Schedule your appointment today by calling 864-639-2424.

What You Should Know When Buying a Central HVAC Unit

Has your central air conditioning unit started to give you signs that it may be near the end of its days? Maybe you’ve noticed some strange sounds, odd smells, or just an overall lack of cool air. The average lifespan of most HVAC systems is an average of 10 to 14 years. While your HVAC unit may still have some life left, you’ll likely need to purchase a new one at some point in the future.

HVAC units are a big-ticket items with a range of features that can make purchasing one feel daunting. Luckily, we’re always here to help with recommendations and installation. Here are a few things to consider if you’re planning to purchase a new HVAC unit.

The Right Size

Homeowners make one common mistake when it comes to choosing an AC unit: they often get one that’s too large – or small – to cool their home efficiently. It would be great if replacing your HVAC unit was as simple as swapping out the old one for an identical-sized unit, but that’s unfortunately not the case.

The best way to choose a unit that will fit your cooling needs is to have one of our technicians come out and perform a load calculation. This will determine the size of the HVAC unit you’ll need to have optimal cooling for your home. The load calculation also helps us determine the amount and size of air ducts that your existing system has and whether they’re working properly.

Energy Efficiency

Buying A Central HVAC Unit

Another important factor to consider is choosing a new unit with the highest possible Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). This is the measurement of the amount of energy that’s needed to deliver the right amount of cooling. All AC models sold in the U.S. are required to have a SEER of at least 13; a SEER of 14 to 25.5 would be considered a high-efficiency model. Since it gets hot and humid here in the summer and you’ll likely be running your AC a lot, it’s best to choose a unit with the highest SEER you can afford. Keep in mind that all Energy Star-rated units do qualify for a federal income tax credit.

Compressor Type

By far the most important and expensive component of a central HVAC unit is the outdoor unit with the compressor. The compressor is the heart of your system that heats or cools your home through compressing the refrigerant gas.

There are three types of compressors: single-stage, two-stage, and variable capacity.

Single-stage compressors only run on a single, high speed. They turn on when the indoor temperature exceeds the temperature setting on your thermostat, then operate at 100% capacity. Once the temperature has dropped down to the desired setting, it will turn off. Since the unit is working on full blast, it can result in higher electricity bills.

Two-stage (also called dual stage) compressors operate at two speeds: high – 2/3 capacity and low – 1/3 capacity. Two-stage compressors will cycle from high to low depending on your cooling needs. Typically, they run on low, which results in more consistent temperatures in the home as well as lower electric bills.

Variable-capacity compressors work differently than either single or two-stage compressors. Variable-capacity can fluctuate from 1/3 capacity to 100% in 250 increments. They modulate during the day, providing a slow, steady stream of conditioned air. Due to the longer run times, variable capacity compressors can dehumidify your home more effectively in the cooling season. Units with this type of compressor are also easier to add zoning to your home, which can effectively increase your energy savings. As you can see, there are quite a few considerations for when you’re shopping for a new AC unit! If you’re planning to buy a new unit soon, turn to your friendly Home Service Heroes at PECO! We’re happy to help you with recommendations, performing load calculations, and installation. Schedule your appointment today by contacting us at 864-639-2424.