Chances are, you had little to nothing to do with installing the ductwork in your home. But like the car you drive — which you didn’t build either — you know it when something seems amiss.

If your ductwork design doesn’t adhere to five basic principles, you risk comfort and savings. Specifically, a room or rooms in your home may feel too cool or too warm. The humidity may seem ideal in some rooms and clammy in others. Or when you place your hand on a register, the airflow doesn’t seem as strong as it should.


Ducts can be problematic for many reasons. Some ducts may be poorly insulated or not insulated at all. Some ducts may leak. And in the end, you can lose as much as 30 percent of your conditioned air.

In contrast, properly designed, installed and insulated duct systems can save you significant amounts of money each year by delivering all the air passing through your system to the places where it’s supposed to go. Smart ductwork design meets basic objectives if it:

  • Provides conditioned air to meet your home’s heating and cooling loads, or the amount of heat and cool air it takes to keep your home comfortable
  • Is properly sized and sealed to provide proper airflow
  • Achieves a neutral pressure in your home and reduces duct air temperature gains or losses
  • Includes ducts that are located between floors in a multi-level home or in a sealed and insulated crawl space
  • Includes supply outlets that are located as far away as possible from exhaust vents in bathrooms and kitchens

Evaluating ductwork design requires the expert eye of a mechanical specialist. We’ll inspect that complex web of metal tubing, registers and grilles to ensure that is functioning as it should. Why put your comfort and savings at risk? Call us today, and we’ll remedy any problems with your ductwork design tomorrow.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

5 Easy Steps To Weatherize Your Home For Summer

Now that you’re running your air conditioner regularly, you’re probably seeing a rise in your electric bills. You can’t do without cooling, but you can take five easy steps to weatherize your home for the summer and reduce your energy expenses.

  1. Insulate and ventilate the attic: Your attic can get unbearably hot in the summer, and the heat up there can make your air conditioner work harder. Insulate your attic if it isn’t insulated already. If you have insulation up there, add to it. Batts are easy to install yourself. If you already have insulation between the rafters, put another layer of unfaced fiberglass across the first layer. Avoid covering the soffit vents. Consider installing an attic fan, but only after making sure your soffit vents are clear, as a fan could draw the cool air out of your living space.

  1. Seal your ductwork: Rips, loose connections and other gaps in your ductwork can be a significant energy drain. Work with your contractor to make sure your ductwork is sealed tight. You can inspect and make repairs to easily accessed ductwork yourself. Have your contractor work on ductwork that’s harder to get at.
  2. Seal air leaks: Find and seal air leaks in your home’s envelope. Check for leaks around doors and windows, chimneys, electrical lines, plumbing pipes, exhaust fans and where the frame of your home and the foundation meet.
  3. Tend to the windows: Use insulating window treatments that keep the heat out. These include sunscreens that block sunlight, reflective film and interior window treatments that block and reflect sunlight. Seal around the edges of the window panes with silicone caulking.
  4. Change your habits: Simple changes can reduce your energy consumption. Keep lights low or off during the day to reduce the heat they generate. Use your oven sparingly or at night; cook with the microwave or a countertop grill. Keep your air conditioner set at 74 to 78 degrees. Leave your windows closed when it’s muggy outside.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

Upgrading To A Heat Pump? Look For These Benefits To Maximize Your Investment

An air-source heat pump provides highly efficient home cooling and heating. Correctly installed, it can deliver as much as three times more energy than it consumes. The heat pump does this by absorbing warmth from the outdoor air and releasing it in your home when it’s cold outside. The heat pump works in reverse when your home needs cooling.

When you’re choosing a heat pump, you’ll need to consider several factors, including efficiency ratings. Heat pumps have two: the heating season performance factor and the seasonal efficiency efficiency ratio.

  • HSPF concerns to the energy needed when you’re using your heat pump in the winter. Look for a unit with an HSPF of 8 to 10.
  • SEER is a measure of a heat pump’s cooling efficiency. Heat pump efficiency rises with the SEER rating. The most efficient units have a SEER rating of 14 to 18.

Checking out and comparing these two ratings are an essential part of choosing a heat pump. But you may want your heat pump to have additional features. Among them:

  • Thermostatic expansion valves, which ensure the correct flow of refrigerant to the indoor coil.
  • Grooved copper tubing for maximum surface area.
  • A two-speed compressor, which delivers only what you need. On low speed, the unit’s energy requirement is reduced. This, in turn, boosts your unit’s energy efficiency.
  • A dual-speed motor, which moves the air at just the right speed to ensure comfort and energy savings.
  • A reverse-cycle chiller, which greatly expands your cooling and heating options.

Although heat-pump technology has advanced considerably over the years, and models for climates that get very cold are available today, most stand-alone heat pumps are best suited to climates where temperatures don’t dip below 40 degrees. Heat pump efficiency falls dramatically at that point. In the Cheyenne area, you will probably need a backup furnace for very cold winter days. This heat pump-furnace combination is called a dual-fuel system.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

How An Air Purification System Helps Improve Indoor Air

Allergens hitch a ride directly into your home on your clothes, your pets and anything else that comes through the door. Even if you stop most of the allergens at the door — by asking family members and friends to remove their shoes, for example — it’s still a good idea to have a purification system in place.An air purification system can remove a significant amount of unwanted particles from the air in your home. And that includes the contaminants that didn’t come in from the outside.

Forced-air systems have filters designed to capture particulate matter. Their effectiveness depends largely on their quality. Quality filters, such as those with high MERV ratings, are better at catching particulate matter than those at the low end of the MERV scale.

Unfortunately, the filter on your HVAC system can’t remove 100 percent of the contaminants in your air. A whole-house air purification system can do a much better job. An air purifier can remove particles down to 0.01 microns in size. It uses three components to do this: a pleated media, ultraviolet lights and a catalyst.

This type of air purification system attaches directly to your HVAC unit. When air is drawn in, it runs through a pleated filter designed to remove particulate matter, including dust mites and pollen. Next, the air passes through the UV lights, which destroy bacteria and mold. Then the air is pushed through the catalyst, which neutralizes odors and chemical vapors.

Some systems can remove as much as 50 percent of all particulate matter in your air in 24 hours. As the air in your home passes through the system again and again, it gets cleaner and cleaner.

Remove a significant amount of particulate matter from your home, and there’s bound to be less allergy-related coughing and sneezing. And because you have UV lights in your system, your family may experience fewer colds.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

Indoor Air Quality Equipment: Selecting The Right System For Your Home

When the outdoor temperature gets uncomfortably hot or cold, it’s likely that you spend more time inside. Unfortunately, spending time in your home often means breathing air that’s more polluted than what’s outside. Dust, pet dander, mold and vapors from cleaning supplies all affect your indoor air. Pollen and other contaminants that family members track into your home on their shoes further contaminate your indoor air.

Indoor air quality equipment can help you keep the air in your home as healthy as possible, which is especially important if any family members have respiratory issues. Three basic types of equipment are:


  • Air cleaners and purifiers: These remove allergens and help keep your indoor air free of pollutants. An air cleaner or purifier is installed directly in your HVAC system. There, it traps contaminants in the air flowing through your ductwork. This type of system removes dust, pollen, mold spores and related contaminants that the filter on your air conditioner or furnace can’t capture.
  • UV light systems: These destroy potentially harmful living microorganisms. Installed in your HVAC system, UV lights destroy the microorganisms’ DNA, making them incapable of reproducing.
  • High-efficiency particulate air filtration systems: These quality air filters remove extremely small particles, organisms and other contaminants from your air. A HEPA filter provides filtration at a minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV) of 17 to 20. HEPA filters are considered hospital-quality but are too dense for many home HVAC systems. Before going with a HEPA filter, talk with your HVAC system contractor. You may need a system retrofit to use one. Alternatively, he may recommend a filter with a lower MERV. Filters with MERVs in the mid range provide enough filtration to remove much of the particulate matter from indoor air.

The indoor air quality equipment you buy should have three numbers indicating the unit’s clean-air delivery rate. The numbers relate to the volume of filtered air delivered by the system. Higher CADR numbers indicate a faster rate of air filtration. For a 120-square-foot room, you should use air-quality equipment with a CADR of 80.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

5 A/C Operating Tips To Keep Your System Running Well, All Summer Long

When you reach for the controls on your air conditioner, you expect the system to roar to life and cool your home. If you don’t maintain and operate your A/C correctly, however, it will not run efficiently and may even fail when you need it most.

Here are five A/C operating tips that will help you keep your air conditioner working efficiently and cost effectively through this summer and many more to come.

  • Keep it maintained: Have your system tuned up by an HVAC-system professional at the start of each cooling season. He will change the filter, but check it regularly as the cooling season progresses. As soon as it looks dirty, change it, as a dirty filter impedes airflow and makes your air conditioner work too hard. (If you did not have a tune-up this spring, it’s not too late!)
  • Provide enough clearance: Your air conditioner’s condenser needs plenty of airflow to run well. Make sure it has at least 2 feet of clearance on all sides. It should also have 5 feet of open space above it. Trim trees, grass and other vegetation away from the unit.
  • Reduce sources of indoor heat: Close the drapes to keep out sunshine that raises your indoor temperature. Pay particular attention to windows facing south or west, as they get the most sunlight.
  • Use your A/C and appliances wisely: Keep your thermostat set as close to 78 or 80 as possible. Each degree you raise your thermostat could lower your cooling bills by as much as 5 percent. Use your ceiling and space fans to keep the air circulating. Although fans won’t lower the temperature, they can produce a wind-chill effect, making you feel more comfortable. Additionally, avoid using your range and stove as much as possible.
  • Reduce indoor humidity: Use a portable dehumidifier or a whole-house dehumidification system to reduce the humidity in your home. Find and seal air leaks that can let moisture inside. By lowering the humidity, you can make your cooling system more effective.

 

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

Home Air Conditioning 101: Terms Every Homeowner Needs To Know

When you’re replacing your air conditioner or having it serviced, you may run into some unfamiliar terms. Here’s an explanation of some air conditioning basics and the terms that may puzzle you at first encounter.

  • Air handler: This is the central part of your system. It houses many of the essential components of your cooling system, including the blower, the blower motor and the controls. It does not include the ductwork through which your conditioned air travels to keep your home cool.
  • Charge: The amount of refrigerant in your air conditioning system.
  • Coil: The tubing or pipes through which the refrigerant flows and where heat transfer takes place.

  • Condenser/Compressor: These components are housed in the metal casing that’s outside your home. This part of your system compresses refrigerant gas and sends it through the condenser coils, where it’s returned to a liquid form. This process removes the heat from the refrigerant and disperses it into the outdoor air.
  • Ductwork: The large metal distribution system that carries cooled air from the air handler to the various rooms in your home.
  • Evaporator: A coil in which the refrigerant absorbs heat and transforms it to into a gas.
  • MERV: The minimum efficiency reporting value. It is a numerical rating of a filter’s ability to capture airborne particles that are 0.3 to 10 microns in size. Higher MERV ratings mean better filter performance.
  • Refrigerant: The liquid flowing through the air conditioning system that facilitates heat transfer. As the refrigerant changes from a liquid to a gas and back again, it either absorbs or gives off heat.
  • Register: The metal covering over the supply vents in the various rooms of your home. Registers usually have louvers or dampers for controlling the amount of air coming out.
  • SEER: The seasonal energy efficiency ratio. This ratio indicates the cooling efficiency of an air conditioner. The higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the air conditioner. Air conditioners manufactured after January 2006 should have a SEER of 13 or higher.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

Sizing Ducts Is A Key Step To A High-Quality HVAC Installation


Installing an HVAC system is a complex operation. Your HVAC technician has to evaluate the physical space available, decide on the type of duct configuration that works best, assess the thermal characteristics of your home and take into consideration the performance ability of the system being installed. Properly sizing the ducts for your new equipment is sometimes overlooked, but it is a critical element of a quality HVAC-system installation.
The ductwork in your heating and cooling system must be properly sized to distribute the conditioned air generated by your air conditioner, heat pump or furnace. Conditioned air must be able to reach all vents and registers in your home, particularly those at points farthest from the HVAC unit.
If the ductwork is too small, it will not be able to carry enough heated or cooled air to keep your home at the temperature you prefer. Small ductwork also restricts airflow the system needs to function properly. You can see your HVAC system as a large air circulation mechanism that constantly moves air in and out of your home; if that circulation is disrupted or blocked, the system won’t work as it should.



Ductwork that’s too large, on the other hand, slows air velocity, wastes energy and causes your utility bills to rise.
To ensure that you have a system that’s correctly sized for your home, your contractor should do a Manual J calculation to determine heat gain and loss in each room. Your contractor should also do a Manual D calculation if your home is new or if you need a significant ductwork redesign. Both manuals are published by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America and are considered the industry standard.
Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

Upgrading Your Home Air Conditioner? Look For These Top Features

Air conditioners have a sometimes bewildering array of options that are designed to increase the unit’s efficiency and performance. Here are some of the more important features to look for when you’re thinking about an upgrade.
Efficiency: High-efficiency air conditioners provide excellent cooling while keeping your monthly utility bills low. Depending on the type of air conditioner you have now, a high-efficiency upgrade could cut your cooling bills almost in half. Look for models with an Energy Star label and a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio of 13 or higher.

  • Two-stages compressor: A unit with a two-stage compressor runs at a lower speed most of the time, ramping up only when you need maximum cooling. This feature can cut your cooling costs by more than 10 percent. And because your unit won’t be working more than it should, it will likely last longer than a unit that runs at top speed all of the time.
  • Sound dampening: Look for insulation and vibration isolation. If noise is a particular concern for you, check out the decibel ratings on each unit you’re considering.
  • Warranty: The compressor should have a 10-year warranty, and the parts should have a five-year warranty. Some units have better warranties. Also ask your contractor about his service plan — or plans — for air conditioners.

While you’re meeting with your contractor, ask him how he will size your unit. A unit that’s too small for your home won’t provide enough cooling and will work harder than it should. On the other hand, a unit that’s oversized will cycle on and off too frequently, providing insufficient dehumidification and poor home comfort. Make sure your contractor uses Manual J, the industry standard, when he sizes your new unit.

As a plus, your new unit will use a more environmentally friendly refrigerant that is replacing the R-22 refrigerant commonly used in older units. Along with improved efficiency, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that your new air conditioner is easier on the Earth’s ozone layer, and you’ve made your carbon footprint smaller.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.

 

HVAC Warranties Help Protect Your Investment

Installing an HVAC system is a complex operation. Your HVAC technician has to evaluate the physical space available, decide on the type of duct configuration that works best, assess the thermal characteristics of your home and take into consideration the performance ability of the system being installed. Properly sizing the ducts for your new equipment is sometimes overlooked, but it is a critical element of a quality HVAC-system installation.

The ductwork in your heating and cooling system must be properly sized to distribute the conditioned air generated by your air conditioner, heat pump or furnace. Conditioned air must be able to reach all vents and registers in your home, particularly those at points farthest from the HVAC unit.

If the ductwork is too small, it will not be able to carry enough heated or cooled air to keep your home at the temperature you prefer. Small ductwork also restricts airflow the system needs to function properly. You can see your HVAC system as a large air circulation mechanism that constantly moves air in and out of your home; if that circulation is disrupted or blocked, the system won’t work as it should.

Ductwork that’s too large, on the other hand, slows air velocity, wastes energy and causes your utility bills to rise.

To ensure that you have a system that’s correctly sized for your home, your contractor should do a Manual J calculation to determine heat gain and loss in each room. Your contractor should also do a Manual D calculation if your home is new or if you need a significant ductwork redesign. Both manuals are published by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America and are considered the industry standard.

Contact us at Eastside Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. today to learn more about how we can assist you with your HVAC needs. We service the entire Denver metro area.