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How to Decide Whether to Replace or Repair Your HVAC System

How to Decide Whether to Replace or Repair Your HVAC System

Your HVAC system is malfunctioning; how do you know whether it’s worth repairing or if it should be replaced altogether? While we can certainly give recommendations when we take a look at your HVAC system, here are a few guidelines you can keep in mind to determine which choice is right for you.

It’s Worth the Cost of Repairs if:

  • If your system is less than 10 years old. The National Association of Home Builders estimates that the typical HVAC system is expected to last about 10-15 years. If your unit is less than 10 years old does or does not have manufacturer’s parts warranty, it’s most likely more cost-efficient to have it repaired. Over 10 years old? You’ll most likely want to have it replaced to save on repeated service calls.
  • Your ductwork is the issue. Many times, issues with your HVAC system can be caused by problems with your ducts. It’s estimated that about 10-30% of your HVAC system’s air leaks out before it reaches the interior of your home, so having your ducts checked for any leaks or gaps can save you money on energy costs and help your system run more efficiently.
  • You’ve had regular maintenance performed on your HVAC unit. If you’ve kept up with regular maintenance on your HVAC system, this can reduce demand service calls and save on your power bill monthly. Regularly cleaning the unit of dust, pollen, animal hair, dirt, and debris should ensure that your unit doesn’t fail before it’s time. We recommend having your HVAC system serviced twice a year; spring and fall are a great time to get your system ready for your heavier heating and cooling needs during the summer and winter months.

It’s Worth the Cost of Replacing if:

  • Your unit is over 10 – 15 years old. As mentioned above, at this age, your unit is nearing the end of its lifespan, and that means the chances of it having repeated need for repairs goes up. As the components in your HVAC begin to age and malfunction, it’s generally cheaper to simply replace the entire unit than to pay for repairs every season.
  • You notice higher energy bills when you use your HVAC. As HVAC units age, they become less energy efficient and must work harder to keep your home heated and cooled. If you notice that your energy bills have been rising, it may be worth replacing your older unit entirely.
  • Your HVAC system isn’t keeping your home comfortable. If your system isn’t able to keep up with the demands of your home and you’re continuously noticing that rooms aren’t as comfortable as they should be, it may be time to replace your HVAC unit.

Are you still having trouble deciding whether you need a repair or replacement? You can do a quick calculation to see what would be more cost-effective. Contact us for an estimate for HVAC repair, and then multiply that number by the age of your system in years. Then, check that price against the price of a new unit. If it’s more than the cost of a new unit, then it’s best to replace it. If it’s less, and the system is under 10 years old, it’s probably best to repair it. If you’re still unsure, our skilled technicians can provide expert advice on whether your unit should be replaced versus repaired. Give us a call and we’ll come out and take a look!

Lennox Sponsors HGTV’s 2019 Smart Home!

We regularly work with Lennox smart home products, so we’re very excited to see that Lennox is sponsoring HGTV’s 2019 Smart Home in the Dallas suburb of Roanoke TX! Using some of the most innovative smart technology, HGTV’s smart home showcases how automated HVAC systems can deliver unsurpassed comfort and convenience. Learn more about some of the high-quality HVAC products used in the home below!

XC25 Air Conditioner

The XC25 is one of the finest air conditioning units that Lennox makes. It’s incredibly energy efficient and has been designated as one of the most efficient Energy Star certified products of 2019 with an efficiency rating of up to 26.00 SEER, allowing you save hundreds of dollars on electricity costs yearly. The XC25 can easily be combined with solar roof modules for even more drastic cuts to your utility bill. As a nice addition, it also has SilentComfort technology that reduces sound levels to 50% quieter than that of a standard air conditioner.

SLP98V Gas Furnace

The SLP98V has Precise Comfort technology that allows it to keep the temperature distributed evenly throughout your home at the exact temperature you like. Say goodbye to cold spots around the home! It has an industry-leading energy efficiency of up to 98.7% AFUE, as has also been named one of Energy Star’s most efficient products of 2019. Like the XC25, it also boasts the SilentComfort technology and is up to 10x quieter than competitive models. With AirFlex technology, you can adjust the airflow in your home to best match your lifestyle and home design. It can also be paired with the iComfort S30 Ultra Smart Thermostat for the most precise comfort.

iComfort S30 Ultra Smart Thermostat

The iComfort only needs to be programmed once, and then you’ll never have to think about it again! With adaptive technology, it adjusts the temperature within your home according to your schedule. It actively monitors your HVAC systems and can alert you to any issues that may arise, as well as when it’s time for routine things like a filter replacement. Keep track of your system’s operation and performance with it’s daily and hourly reports via the web portal, or simply check out the monthly report that’s automatically emailed to you. It’s compatible with Google Home, Alexa, and the Apple Home Kit.

You can control and monitor your system with your smartphone (Android and Apple compatible) and with the Smart Away mode, your thermostat can detect your location using your phone’s GPS to adjust your HVAC system to be more energy efficient when you’re not at home. You can also balance the temperature and humidity using the “Feels Like” feature to create the temperature you want to feel. It’s also a great choice for allergy sufferers; the iComfort’s Allergen Defender will monitor the air quality and pollen levels in your area according to zip code and automatically turns on the fan to clear your home’s air when levels are high.

iHarmony Zoning System

The iHarmony Zoning system allows for room to room temperature control for iComfort integrated equipment. Used in combination with other Lennox equipment, you can redirect airflow to have heating and cooling wherever you’d like it in your home. It can also help you use less energy and cut costs by up to 35% when used with a programmable thermostat. The iHarmony allows every family member to have the ultimate comfortable space and can be controlled remotely with your smartphone.

Lennox MPB Mini-Split Heat Pump

The MPB is an ideal option for small spaces and add-on rooms where it isn’t practical to extend or install ductwork. It’s incredibly energy efficient with efficiency ratings of up to 24.50 SEER and 11.50 HSPF and has inverter technology that adjusts motor speeds based on outdoor weather and temperature conditions. The MPB is also very quiet, allowing you to enjoy optimal comfort without additional noise.

Pure Air S Air Purification System

Unlike many air purification systems, the Pure Air S filters out particles, germs, and odors, giving you the ability to combat the 3 main household air contaminants. The Pure Air S removes 99.9% of mold, spores, pollen, dust and pet dander, as well as 90% of flu and cold viruses, infectious bacteria and other microorganisms down to 0.01 microns. In addition, it removes approximately 50% of household odors and volatile organic compounds from sources like cooking fumes, pets, cleaning supplies, paint and more. Its smart features allow it to monitor the life of the filter as well as its purifying UVA light, so you don’t have to! When it’s time for a replacement, it will send a notification to your iComfort thermostat. The Pure Air S system doesn’t produce any ozone byproduct and actively works to reduce ozone, giving your home the healthiest, freshest air possible.

Want to learn more about any of these great smart home products, or would like to have them installed in your home? Give us a call today and we’d be happy to discuss the best products for your heating and cooling needs.

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Get Smart About Thermostats!

Smart thermostats are great for so many reasons; they add convenience, comfort, and energy efficiency to any home. If you’ve considered adding one to your household, you may have discovered there are a lot of options available. How do you choose the right one? We’ve compiled a list of four of our favorite thermostats that we personally install in our clients’ homes. They have amazing functionality, look attractive, and offer all the features you’d hope to see in a smart thermostat.

Lennox iComfort E30

The E30 is our top choice for smart thermostats. It’s innovatively designed, offers great features, and makes it easy to save money on energy bills without having to sacrifice your comfort. The E30 has a “Feels Like” setting, which takes the temperature and humidity into account, allowing you to have your home feel exactly how you like it. It’s a great option for those with asthma or seasonal allergies; it has the ability to monitor the air quality and allergens in your zip code and will turn on the system’s fan to keep your home’s air clean. If you have a whole-home humidifier, the E30 can be set-up to work with it to keep your home’s air moisture level optimal. You can control your home’s temperature from anywhere with a smartphone; it’s also compatible with Amazon Alexa, Amazon Echo, or Echo Dot

In terms of energy efficiency, the E30 offers a number of innovative features. It features a Smart Away mode that works with your smartphone’s location to adjust your home’s temperature based on whether or not you’re at home, and Schedule IQ technology that adjusts temperature settings to match changes in your routine. A convenient One-Touch away mode allows you to override your regular programming schedule with a single touch, setting back your heating and cooling set points to help you save energy; it’s Smooth Setback Recovery setting allows you to automatically adjust your heating and cooling start time to keep your house at the exact temperature you like. Additionally, the E30 provides handy performance reports that show you the history of your system’s operation and performance.

Honeywell Lyric T6

The Lyric is a great economical option for those who like the fancy features of more expensive thermostats but want to save on costs. While it’s a fraction of the price of others, it offers many of the same features – and it works with everything. The Lyric offers complete connectivity with your mobile device, allowing you to control it from anywhere; multiple smartphones can be linked, giving your whole family the ability for remote temperature control.

With 7-day flexible scheduling, you can program it to work with your schedule throughout the week; if your schedule changes, it’s easy to adjust the setting remotely using the app. The Lyric also features geofencing capabilities and smart alerts that let you know when you need your filter changed. It can be integrated with Amazon Alexa, Google Home, IFTTT, and Apple HomeKit. It also comes in a Z-Wave version for control and automation of other smart devices within your home.

Emerson Sensi Touch

The Sensi Touch is a little simpler than the previous thermostats, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing! It allows you to easily control your home temperature from anywhere using wifi, and it works with Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKits. It also offers convenient geofencing. Named the “Best Overall” smart thermometer of 2018, it has an attractive HD color touchscreen display with backlighting that makes it easy to use in low light. You can set up smart alerts to let you know when extreme temperature is on the way, or when humidity changes are detected, and it conveniently receives automatic software updates, so you’ll always have access to the latest features as they’re released. The Sensi also sends you usage reports, allowing you to monitor your heating and cooling run times, as well as receive energy saving tips, product news and more.

Nest Learning Thermostat

The Nest Learning Thermostat is aptly named; this thermostat learns and adapts to your schedule – in only one week! The Nest makes it easy to save energy based on your lifestyle and needs. Nest also has voice control capability with Alexa and Google Assistant and can be set up to track your smartphone location, adjusting the temperature of your home to fit your schedule. An independent study showed The Nest was able to save people an average of 10% on heating bills and 15% on cooling bills, effectively paying for itself in under two years. Our company has experienced a high failure rate with these thermostats however, the Lennox or Honeywell is the best option. They work with everything and the Honeywell even has a Z-Wave version.

Get Smart About Thermostats!

Now that you know about our favorite smart thermostats, the only question is, which one is right for you? If you’re interested in installing a new smart thermostat or would like to discuss which one would fit your needs best, give us a call! We’re happy to go over the different features in more detail and find the perfect thermostat for you.

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Ethical Considerations in the World of HVAC

Ethics are an important topic in any industry. As a company, behaving ethically is essential from the standpoint of continuing to stay in business. Customers, vendors, or even employees who feel the business is behaving unethically are not likely to stick around. By behaving ethically, a business ensures that they build trust and relationships with those they work with, whether they’re customers or colleagues. Unfortunately, in the world of HVAC, many companies don’t behave as ethically as they should, making customers wary of hiring such services.  We’ve identified a few of the biggest ethics offenses in the HVAC industry that cause customers to lose faith in the service.

HVAC

Disclosure of Pricing

Many customers like to know how much they can expect to spend on maintenance or repairs. While costs aren’t always completely foreseeable, especially in cases where the problem isn’t clear cut, it’s important to have full disclosure with customers about any increase to the quoted price. Good ethics involves giving customers the chance to decide if they want to incur greater costs. It’s also important to explain what the additional costs are for and why. Too often, services are performed without any discussion of the necessity, leaving some customers feeling like they’re in the dark about what was actually done. No customer wants to deal with bait-and-switches, over-pricing, or lack of communication. These things understandable cause a lack of trust in the company’s services and ultimately made lead to a loss of business.

HVAC Misdiagnosis or Non-Diagnosis

HVAC systems are highly technical, meaning customers depend on skilled HVAC technicians to properly diagnose any issues they’ve been experiencing. Thorough diagnostics aren’t just for the technician to determine the nature of the problem – they also allow customers to understand what’s going on with their equipment. A good diagnosis should include an easy to understand description of the problem, and the technician should be willing to spend time explaining the issue and address any concerns the customer may have. This not only allows the customer to make a more informed decision regarding their equipment, but it also builds further trust between the customer and the technician.

When dealing with older HVAC systems, it may be necessary to inform customers that the system is at risk of future failure. This can be a difficult conversation with some, as they may feel you’re trying to oversell. It’s important to explain the potential risks however, as the unit may fail in the near future, leading to an angry customer. As with any difficult conversation, clear, open communication will help customers feel more at ease with the information and allow them to make an informed decision.

Other Ethical Issues

If there’s a need to change the product specifications, this should always be discussed and agreed to by the customer – they shouldn’t have to find out after the work is done that the equipment installed isn’t product or level of quality they were expecting. Employees that are work on commission or other types of profit sharing can also cause unethical behavior, as it sends a message that the bottom line is about profit – not customer service.

We’ve identified a few areas that HVAC maintenance can present ethical issues and cause understandable suspicion about having HVAC work done. At PECO, integrity and ethics are at the cornerstone of what we do. We take every measure to make sure that we act ethically with our customers, from the moment they call us to the moment we leave their home. With our skilled and dedicated technicians, our clear cut pricing, and our priority to customer service, you can feel confident any time you give us a call!

Spring Into Maintenance Season

Spring is the perfect time of year to perform any home maintenance that has been on hold over the winter. The wintertime brings harsh weather that adds wear and tear to your home, most of which isn’t obvious at first glance. To keep your home in excellent condition all year round and prevent expensive repairs, we recommend checking your house from top to bottom to catch up on any maintenance issues. While it can be a little overwhelming knowing where to start with spring cleaning and maintenance, we’ve made this handy checklist outlining some of the areas that are hit hardest by the wintery elements.

Spring
  • Inspection – Start by taking a good look around the outside of your home; do you notice any signs of wear and tear? Are there shingles that have shifted on your roof? Gutters that need repair? Check the siding on your house, your door and window seals – are there any areas that look worn or damaged? By giving your house a thorough once-over, you’ll be able to catch any problems before they have the chance to worsen and cause costly repairs. Head inside and check the window and door seals again, noting any cracks or moisture trapped between the panes. Now is also a great time to check your carbon monoxide and fire detectors and change the batteries if needed.
  • Windows – After winter weather it’s likely your windows can use a little attention! If you feel comfortable cleaning them yourself, use a squeegee or soft cloth with a mixture of equal parts hot water and white vinegar to clean that wintertime grime away. Don’t forget the screens; clean them using a mild detergent and allow them to completely dry before hanging them back on your windows. Note any holes in the screens- these should be fixed or replaced prior to summer to prevent any insects from coming into the house.
  • Gutters – Gutters take a particular beating during the winter! Spring is the perfect time to clean any leaves, twigs, or other debris that may have accumulated in them during winter storms. Safely climb a ladder and remove any debris, then run a hose up to your roof and make sure your gutters and have proper drainage and that the downspouts send the water flowing away from your home’s foundation. Also, be sure to check that all the downspouts are securely attached to your home.
  • Hardscaping – Wintertime temperatures can be hard on your driveways and walkways; check all the hardscaping for cracks, chips or other damage. Small cracks can often be repaired on your own, but larger areas may require a professional’s touch.
  • Woodwork – Winter moisture can be tough on woodwork around your home, such as decks, siding, and railings. Spring is the perfect time to power wash and reseal any wood prior to warm summer weather. Note any signs of wood damage that may need to be replaced.
  • Grills – Summertime means barbecuing, making spring the perfect season to prep your grill. For charcoal grills, it’s pretty straightforward- clean out ant ash or grease that may have accumulated. If you have a gas grill, it’s a good idea to check the lines to make sure there are no leaks. Coat the lines with soapy water and turn on the gas. If there are any leaks, you’ll see soap bubbles form at the leak site. Always be sure to keep your grill at least 10 feet away from your house and at least 5 feet away from anything combustible.
  • HVAC – Your HVAC system has likely been used a lot over the winter; servicing it in the spring ensures that your system is clean and ready to go for the summer months. This year the pollen count has been extremely high, and pollen is sticky gets into the outdoor and indoor coils.  The last thing you want is to discover you have an issue that needs to be fixed in the middle of a heat wave! The skilled technicians at PECO can quickly help you with all your HVAC maintenance, including cleaning and replacing air filters.  Ask our Service Expert about whole house filtration options.
  • Irrigation – Before you begin watering your garden or yard this spring turn on all your irrigation, checking for any leaks, off-kilter sprinkler heads, or other malfunctions. Doing this will prevent significant water waste and potential water damage to your foundation, woodwork, or other parts of your home.

Hopefully, this list made it easier to know where to start with your spring cleaning and maintenance! If you’re unable to do any of your home upkeep due to time constraints, physical constraints, or lack of proper tools, contact us at PECO! We’re your friendly home maintenance experts handling all types of home repair, from gutters to decks and more. We’ll help you get your home in perfect order and ready to weather another year.

5 Great Tasks To Keep Your Home At Its Best!

It is important to provide your home with routine care and maintenance so that it stays at its very best, but it is very common for homeowners to neglect doing so. Here are a few highly effective – yet simple – home maintenance tasks that will greatly benefit you and your home.

Cleaning the inside of your dryer and dryer vent

According to the US Fire Administration, 2900 fires are caused by built-up lint inside of a dryer every year, which has led to over $35 million in property damage. If excess amounts of lint have built up, it can be ignited from things like gas burners or electric heating elements, which will cause the flames to travel through the lint-lined exhaust vent. These fires can cause extensive damage and easily destroy a home, thankfully, they can be easily prevented. Simply check the exhaust vent as well as the inside of your dryer’s cabinet and clean it on a routine basis to prevent these disasters from occurring.  Many older dryer vents are not up to the new code – metal pipe – they are the plastic flexible lines, those must be replaced.

Cleaning faucet aerators

In case you weren’t aware, a faucet aerator is typically found at the tip of most indoor water faucets and serves multiple purposes. It helps to conserve water and energy costs, reduces faucet noise, prevents splashing, and provides slight filtration of debris. If the water from a faucet has recently started to flow unevenly or slower than normal, then it may be time to clean your faucet aerator.

Cleaning the aerator is a simple process that can help increase the quality and pressure of the water that comes from your faucet. To do this, unscrew and disassemble the aerator, and use something like an old toothbrush to scrub any debris or buildup. While you are there, it is also a good idea to do a quick scrub on the inside of the neck of the faucet, as it is very common for buildup to also occur there. After reassembling, you should find that the quality of the flow of water should be greatly increased.

Cleaning the oven door

Aside from just looking gross, spills and remnants of old food/liquids can cause pretty significant smoke and smell issues. Cleaning the big spills and messes as they happen is a great way to keep your oven looking good, but if you really want to make it shine it is sometimes necessary to go a bit further. To do this, you are going to want to remove the front panel on your oven by removing the screws, if you don’t know where to find the screws consult the manual or do a quick search online to find your model. Once you have it removed, simply take a nylon scrubber and degreaser and get to work! Once you are done, reattach the door and admire the pristine look of your oven.

Cleaning your bath Fan

Your bath fan is very important for the health and comfortability in your bathroom by helping air circulate. However, it’s very easy for it to become downright filthy, thanks to the combination of dust, moisture, and debris that constantly passes through. Cleaning your bath fan is an easy task that provides great benefits.

Before you start, make sure that the switch for the fan is turned off, and then squeeze the springs on the fan’s cover to remove it. Once you have taken off the cover, the next step is to remove the actual fan. First, remove whatever is holding the fan in place, which is most likely a screw. If there is no screw to be found, then there is probably a tab that is holding the fan in place, remove this tab and then push out the metal fan housing. Make sure to watch where you stand though, because there is a high chance that debris will fall out! Now that the fan is out, it’s time to clean. Use a damp rag or moist wipes to clean off all the buildup and use a Q-tip to clean any of the hard to reach sections. Now that your fan and cover are squeaky clean, just reverse the previous steps to reattach your fan and enjoy the benefits!

If you are still disappointed by the lack of performance after cleaning the fan, then you may need a new fan altogether, but that is a topic for another time.


Many older homes have the fans exhaust into the attic and not outside.  The code is to vent them to the outside with either a soffit or roof vent.  If you aren’t sure if yours does, go into the attic, find the fan box and there should be a duct that leads outside.  This is the new code standard…same for exhaust for a vent hood.

Cleaning your trash can

When we say cleaning the trash can, we don’t just mean routinely taking out the trash, although we certainly hope you are doing that as well! Even if you use big hefty trash bags, that doesn’t mean the actual trash can is free from exposure to germs. Sometimes your bag leaks or tears and some garbage manages to make its way to the bottom of the bin, which can cause lingering smells or stains to stay. Thankfully, the solution to this is extremely simple. All you have to do is spray some disinfectant into the bottom of the trashcan each time you take out the trash, take the time once a month to wash it out with some bleach and hot water, and boom, you’re all done.

Keeping your home at its best is something that all homeowners want to do, but a lot of them simply don’t know the best ways to do it. The professionals at PECO Heating & Cooling are your local experts when it comes to home maintenance. Be sure to give our team a call at (864)-639-2424 to learn more!

5 Common Household Emergencies Faced by Homeowners

It is a simple fact that every homeowner is going to experience some issues, some of which are more common than you may think. Here is a list of the top 5 household emergencies faced by homeowners and what you can do to deal with them!

Household Emergencies

1 – Getting Locked Out of Your Home

Ever lock your doors and walk out of your home, only to realize that you left your keys inside? The fact that this is the number one issue means that most of us have been there, but that doesn’t make it any less embarrassing or irritating when it does happen. Here are a few tips for when you find yourself in this unfortunate situation so that you don’t have to resort to breaking into your own home.

–          Having a spare key:

Okay, so this one is kind of obvious, but it still should be noted that having a spare key is one of the best methods available. If you have a friend or family member that you can trust, it is a great idea to let them have a spare key so that you have another way to get into your home if you lock yourself out. It also means that you have someone else who can get into your home if you need something done, but can’t be there to do it yourself. If you don’t want to give someone else a key, then you can always buy a key hider.

–          Call a locksmith:

It is best to avoid breaking the locks on your home if you ever lock yourself out. It will cost you money and time to get it fixed, and it will be way more of a hassle than simply waiting for a local locksmith to come to your home. Find out who your local locksmith is and give them a call, they will be able to get you back into your home and save you far more time and money than breaking in would.

2 – Losing Power

Something that is practically inevitable for everyone is experiencing a power outage. Nine times out of ten it is out of your control, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things you can do. Be sure to remember to follow these steps in order to help protect you and your wallet, before you head over to the breaker panel.

–          Shut the fridge:

The simple solutions are often the most beneficial. Simply shutting the fridge or keeping it closed will help keep the interior cold, which will help the food inside from spoiling. This will help you avoid having to buy new groceries and can help you from getting potential food poisoning.

–          Unplug your electronics:

Power surges can seriously damage or outright destroy any electronics that are still connected to an outlet. Make sure you unplug any important devices to help prevent the need for buying a replacement. Alternatively, you may want to consider buying a UPS (unlimited power supply, not the shipping service). These are extension cord-like devices that will regulate the power supply to any connected devices in order to prevent damage from things like power surges, which means you don’t have to worry about unplugging them. Some even store power to help keep your devices on even after a loss of power.

–          Get a backup generator:

Having a backup generator is a great way to avoid completely losing power, and is generally just a good idea to have, especially in the event of an emergency. There are different types of generators, and the best choice will depend on your home as well as your needs. Be sure to give our team a call to determine the best solution as well and to get one of the best installation services you can find.

3 – Frozen Pipes

There are few things worse than a lack of hot water, especially when the weather is starting to cool down. Frozen pipes also run the risk of bursting, which can result in serious damage to a home that could require repairs that could cost thousands of dollars.

–          Turn off the faucet

If the stream of water from a faucet has recently stopped, or even slowed down to a trickle, then this could be an indication that you have a frozen pipe that is ready to burst. You can help prevent further damage by turning off the faucet and calling a professional to come over as soon as possible.

–          Turn up the heat

In the event that a frozen pipe is behind a wall, turn up the heat in your home or use something like a hair dryer in order to help the pipe thaw.

4 – Overflowing Toilet

The panic caused by an overflowing toilet is something that is hard to beat, but it is important to keep a clear head and act fast if you want to avoid more serious damage.

–          Stop the flow of water:

When most people notice the water start to overflow, their first instinct is to grab some towels, but what they should be doing is stopping the flow of water. You can do this by taking the lid off the toilet, pressing down on the flapper valve, and lifting the float in order to cut off the supply of water.

–          Grab a plunger:

A tool as old as the toilet itself… okay not really, but it is one of the oldest and most effective tools to have available. If there is a plunger nearby then it is time to act. If there is enough water to cover the plunger then your task is simple, put the device in the toilet and plunge until the suspected blockage is gone.

5 – Heating or AC goes out

Aside from making your home uncomfortable, excessive heat or cold can also be damaging to your health. Here are a few things you can do to keep your HVAC system running smoothly and what you should do if it breaks.

–          Keep your system maintained:

Just like most other machines, the best way to avoid your HVAC system breaking down is to provide it with proper care and maintenance. If you have noticed a dip in performance, strange noises, or the filters are particularly dirty, then this could indicate that your HVAC system needs some maintenance.

–          Call a professional:

Fixing your heating and cooling system is not a do-it-yourself task. Improper care could result in more damage which will cost you even more time and money. If your system breaks down, then your best bet is to call a professional and have them take a look as soon as possible.

At PECO Heating & Cooling, we stand by our work, which is why we offer a 1-year parts and labor warranty on all our repairs. We have a team that offers service 24/7, and we offer same or next day services for all your heating and cooling, or electrical needs. Call us at (864)-639-2424 to schedule your appointment as soon as possible!

Duct Diseases You Can Cure

There are a pretty large number of issues that HVAC technicians constantly battle, but one of the most common are the afflictions that your duct systems face. If you have noticed a lackluster performance from your ventilation system – don’t panic, because the team of professionals at PECO Heating & Cooling are here to help.

The first step to fixing something is to determine the problem, and a faulty duct system could have several. A common one is poor duct static pressure. If you weren’t aware (which many aren’t), static pressure in a duct refers to the resistance of airflow in your system. You need to make sure that the push of the air is greater than the actual resistance to the flow, otherwise the flow could be too low or even non-existent. Think of it like your body’s blood pressure, if the amount is too high or low, then that is an indication of poor health/performance.

Duct

Excessive noise, improper airflow, equipment degradation, and total system failure could all be results of improper static pressure. Our team can identify these problems by performing an airflow or static pressure check. An airflow check is the process of checking the amount of airflow that your fan is producing and how much of that airflow is delivered to each register or grill. After taking these measurements, we will compare the results to standard pressure and airflow rates. If the measurement does not meet the expected standards, then you have a problem. Here are a few common causes and how they can be identified:

– Undersized Air Ducts
One potential cause for this could be undersized air ducts, the common solution for which is to perform a complete renovation of your duct system. Our technicians will identify which ducts need work by performing an airflow test, and then will replace them with ducts that are the appropriate size. Sometimes replacements are not always necessary though, and the solution could be something as simple as opening a closed balance dampener.

– Blocked Ducts
Another issue that can be identified by measuring and comparing airflow to the necessary standards, although you may be able to check just looking to see if the grill is squished to the point that nothing could pass through or is blocked by debris. Sometimes blockage can also be caused by a dead animal that managed to make its way in there, though this probably isn’t the case (you would definitely smell it). The solution for a blocked duct may be as simple a quick cleaning, but it could also require more extensive repairs or an outright replacement.

– Duct Leakage
Duct leakage is an issue that will affect virtually every duct system at some point. Leakage can be identified by improper air flow (starting to see a pattern?) or by checking a duct’s tightness level. A common cause is a lack of sealant or proper duct sealing material. Acceptable sealants vary by state, so be sure to leave it up to the professionals to provide you with the right materials.

These are just a few of the potential problems and causes of a faulty duct system, there are many more. Thankfully, the team here at PECO Heating & Cooling can easily identify and fix whatever problem is causing your duct system to perform poorly. Feel free to give us a call at (864)-639-2424 if you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment today!

8 Signs You’re About to Hire a Bad Contractor

Is it time to hire a contractor? We’ve put together 8 helpful signs you’re about to hire a bad contractor, along with tips to help you make sure your contractor is licensed and insured and will provide you with the utmost quality service.

8 Signs You’re About to Hire a Bad Contractor

1.       You don’t verify they have insurance

This is so important! Always verify that the contractor you hire has insurance. Why? If something goes wrong, you could be the one that gets burned. Did you know a homeowner can be sued if a contractor is hurt while on the homeowner’s property? This can happen if a contractor does not have workers compensation for themselves or any subcontractors they hire. You may find that these contractors cost less to hire because they choose to not pay workers compensation, general liability, or property insurance premiums. However, if you end up sued (or a claim is filed on your homeowner’s policy), the total cost to you results in much higher than it would’ve been to hire an insured contractor. When you hire a contractor, who does not have proper insurance coverage, you are assuming the risks for their work mistakes and any injuries that may occur at your home.

2.       They don’t have a license

If they don’t have a license, it’s simple. They’re illegally working for you. Licenses are required for three main purposes: to identify your business and make sure you are accountable for your actions. To protect the public health and safety. To keep track of your finances for tax purposes. Again, these contractors may be cheaper to work with, but they’re likely not paying any taxes either.

3.       Their status isn’t in good standing

According to uslegal.com, a member in good standing is defined by: “Member in good standing is the status assigned to a member of an organization when he or she has remained current on organization dues and payments. Staying current with filing of required periodical reports such as registration, license and tax is also generally a criterion for a member to be in good standing”. As you can see, it is shady business hiring a contractor not in good standing.

4.       They use high-pressure sales tactics

Nobody should hire a contractor that uses high-pressure sales tactics. If you’re not comfortable with your contractor, choose to hire another one. Contractors should educate their clients on reasons why their items need repair, maintenance, or replacement, but when it becomes too pushy this is when its time to move onto the next.

5.       The contractor is new to the biz

This does not automatically mean they’re a bad hire. However, review the above tips to ensure who you’re hiring is legit. Ask for customer references as well so you can call others and see if they’re right for you. Or, seek out popular online review companies such as Google reviews, Yelp reviews, or Facebook reviews.

6.       You’re being dismissed

Do not hire a contractor who ignores you or your needs.

7.       You pick the cheapest contractor

If they’re the cheapest by far, make sure they’re licensed and insured. Also, contractors are not one of the purchases where “cheaper is better”. We highly recommend looking at previous work, consenting referrals or reviews.

8.       You don’t follow up on referrals or online reviews

Don’t skip customer referrals or reviews. They provide key information that you would want to know before you choose to hire that contractor. Both good things and not so good things.

At PECO Air, our expertise, promptness, and customer service make us the best choice for heating, cooling, and electrical needs. Whether you need a diagnostic, repairs, or installation, you can rely on our experienced team. We stand by our work and offer a 1-year parts and labor warranty on all repairs. Contact our licensed and insured company today to set up an appointment at (864)-639-2424.

10 Tips to Save On Winter Heating

Looking to save on winter heating?

We’re here to help keep your energy bills lower!

Winter-Heating

1.       Energy Audits

Often a free service, your local electric company is happy to help assess your needs and check in to see what is causing your bill to spike. They’ll take into consideration your lifestyle, as well as your patterns of energy usage. A representative will go through your home to inspect the structure, survey your appliances and measure the insulation. Once this is done, the company will make (and help to implement) suggestions for more efficient energy consumption. An example would be to change your light bulbs to more energy efficient ones.

2.       Air Leaks

It is important to check for any air leaks within your household. It is allowing the warm air to escape, making your heating system work harder to keep your house at the desired temperature, and ultimately increasing your energy bill. Seal the openings of the leaks using silicone or latex caulk.  By sealing air leaks, your energy bill could drop as much as 30 percent.

3.       Thermostat

Setting your thermostat to 75 degrees in the winter is comfortable, but costly. The lower the setting you can handle, the more money you will save. Setting the thermostat to 62 overnight will save you even more on your energy bill. And, if you’ll be gone for a few days, turn the temperature down to 55, which is the lowest setting you can use without the pipes freezing.

4.       Insulation

Insulation is the most important component to keeping a home warm in the. It’s important to make sure you have the proper level of insulation throughout your house in order to stay warm and save the most money possible.

5.       Fireplaces

Fireplaces are excellent sources of heat, but a fireplace damper left open when not in use will cause your heated air to escape and allow cold air to come inside.

6.       Air Vents

Many people choose to block these with furniture as they can be an eye sore. However, in doing so you’re causing the furnace to work much harder. To keep your airflow moving efficiently, check to make sure none of your vents are blocked.

7.       Ceiling Fans

If you have a ceiling fan, change the direction of the blades to push air downward. This will actually help heat the room more evenly. The more you know!

8.       Drapes

Did you know that full drapes, like those made of a wool-cotton blend help to insulate your rooms from cold air coming through the windows? This adds another “layer” of warmth without increasing your energy bill.

9.       Space Heaters

We understand these help warm up a small space. However, they’re a huge fire hazard so we do not recommend using them.

10.   Rugs

Did you know that area rugs are not just a design element, but they insulate the floor as well? They trap cool air underneath. A great way to style a room and add warmth.

At PECO Air, our expertise, promptness, and customer service make us the best choice for heating, cooling, and electrical needs. Whether you need a diagnostic, repairs, or installation, you can rely on our experienced team. We stand by our work and offer a 1-year parts and labor warranty on all repairs. Contact us today to set up an appointment at (864)-639-2424.