Posts Tagged ‘Air Conditioning’

Ways to Keep Your House Cool This Summer

Thursday, July 5th, 2018

When thinking of ways to keep your house cool this summer, the first answer is usually “turn on the air conditioner.” That’s the purpose of the unit, after all, and in hot towns like Merritt Island, air conditioning systems are as important as reliable plumbing and electrical wiring. But that’s not the only way to stay cool this summer. Besides a few obvious options, like dressing in lightweight clothes and keeping cool snacks like fruit and iced tea in the refrigerator, you can make a few improvements to your house that can help your air conditioner out.

How to Keep Your Home Cool

Start by checking the insulation in your home. Chances are, you have the space to add more if you can, particularly in the attic which usually has extra room. Insulation slows the leeching of cool temperatures from your home, the same way it slows the leeching of warm temperature in the winter. Adding more allows your home to retain cool temperatures more easily, giving your air conditioner a rest and saving you money on monthly bills.

Similarly, take a look at your doors and windows for any cracks or crevices around the edges. Cool air can slip out of a front door that has a little extra space around the edges or windows that don’t seal all the way when they’re closed. You can correct the issue very easily with stripping placed around the crack, and/or install vinyl-sided windows to help seal up leaks around the edges.

These steps may cost a little up front, but you can ultimately see a lot of savings over time as they cut down on your monthly cooling bills and ensure that your house stays cool. Here on Merritt Island, air conditioning systems need all the help they can get. We’re experienced not only with installing and repairing air conditioners, but in those extra little touches to help make your home as energy efficient as possible.

The experts at Steve Hoskins Air Conditioning can help with new ways to keep your house cool this summer. Give us a call today and let us know what we can do for you!

When to Schedule Cocoa Beach, FL Air Conditioning Repair

Sunday, April 15th, 2018

Air conditioning systems are complex. Because they have so many components that need to work together, it can be difficult to know when you need air conditioning repair. After all, you may hear a strange noise, or a bit of frost on the coil, and think that maybe it’ll hold out another cooling season without any professional attention. While we can sympathize, it’s always better to take care of any air conditioning problems as soon as you discover them. While some problems are obvious, others are subtle. For Cocoa Beach, FL air conditioning repair service, call Steve Hoskins AC today!

  • Inadequate cooling: If you find that your AC no longer cools as well it used to, or it does not meet your expectations, then there is probably a problem in need of repair. You may have a clogged air filter that is reducing the airflow, and may have caused the evaporator coil to freeze over. Alternatively, you may have a leak in your ductwork somewhere.
  • Hot spots: Does it feel as though there’s a certain section of your home that never gets cool? If you have hot spots throughout your home, then you probably have some kind of system imbalance. This could indicate a problem with your ductwork, or even a thermostat issue. It could also mean that your air handler is not supplying enough cool air into your system to reach all the areas of your home.
  • Buzzing noise: While you can expect a certain amount of noise from your AC unit, buzzing often indicates an electrical issue. There may be arcing in the system, or an electrical fault in the power supply. You may need to have your electrical box checked to make sure that it’s supplying enough power to your cooling system. Handling electricity is hazardous, and should only be performed by a trained professional.

These are just a few of the reasons to schedule Cocoa Beach, FL air conditioning repair. Call Steve Hoskins AC today for exceptional AC services! 

Humidity and Your Air Conditioning

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

Here on Merritt Island, air conditioning systems form a bulwark against the hot and humid Florida weather. We tend to think of them as helping to reduce the temperature, and a good A/C unit can definitely perform that duty well. But air conditioners also help reduce the humidity in the air: no small concern here in muggy Florida. Indeed, in some cases lowering the humidity may be just as important as lowering the temperature. Here’s a quick primer on how humidity and your air conditioning system interact.

How Air Conditioners Can Help Reduce Humidity

The AC unit cools the air through refrigerant, which enters an evaporator coil in liquid form and under an extreme amount of pressure. As it expands, it pulls heat from the air, which in turn pulls moisture from the air as well. As the air cools, the moisture in it condenses until it forms condensate droplets, which the air conditioning system collects and diverts out of the main unit via a drain line. As the AC works, it thus reduces the humidity as well as the temperature, retaining a drier and more comfortable environment inside the home.

The only problem is that here in Florida, we have a lot of humidity to get rid of. And any energy your AC unit spends in getting rid of it won’t be spent in lowering the temperature. The more humidity that is inside your home, the less efficient your air conditioner is and the more it will cost you in monthly energy bills. In such cases, a trained technician can install a reliable dehumidifier in your system. They also offer comprehensive whole-house coverage, meaning that you can enjoy your conditioned air without worrying about the strain on your air conditioner or the increased risk of a breakdown.

We operate on Merritt Island, air conditioning systems and dehumidification systems are both in our wheelhouse, and we can discuss your options with you before performing an installation. Pick up the phone and give us a call today!

For more information on humidity and your air conditioning, or to discuss the installation of a dehumidifier in your home, talk to the experts at Steve Hoskins Air Conditioning.

Will Ductless Cooling Need Fewer Repairs Than a Forced Air AC?

Friday, October 14th, 2016

Generally speaking, whole home air conditioners come in one of two different types. Traditional forced air ACs rely on a central air conditioner that uses a system of ducts to spread cool air throughout your house. Ductless cooling systems, on the other hand, have individual air handling units for each area of your home, and all the indoor units are all connected to one outdoor unit. Both systems have their share of benefits and drawbacks, and here in Cocoa, FL, our air conditioning repair techs are skilled at treating both. Indeed, the question of repairs becomes key when asking what kind of system works best for your home. Will ductless cooling need fewer repairs than a forced-air AC? The answer is a little more complicated than it may first appear.

In most cases you’re looking at the same basic system for both centralized units and ductless units. The only difference is the size and output power (as well as the presence of ducts or lack thereof). Each unit has a particular load capacity, built to handle a certain amount of work over a given time. In light of that, there’s no real distinction between the two types as far as which one breaks down more often. As long as your system is sized appropriately for your space, and given the variables of individual brands and maintenance schedule, there’s nothing to say that one type will go for longer (or shorter) periods of time before requiring repairs.

The main difference lies in the size and the decentralized format of ductless air conditioner units. In simple terms, when a centralized unit needs repairs, it affects the entirety of the household, and often tends to be larger than a problem with a ductless unit. Furthermore, because of the nature of ductless systems, you can still use the air conditioner in other parts of the house even when one of your indoor units of your ductless system is experiencing trouble. That simply isn’t possible with a forced air AC.

That could spell the difference in what unit is best for you, though individual circumstances vary. Whether ductless cooling needs fewer repairs than a forced air AC probably depends on individual circumstances, which means you’ll need to decide for yourself which on works best for you. Give Steve Hoskins Air Conditioning a call today if you need air conditioning repair in Cocoa, FL, and let us give you the expert advice you need!

Ductwork and Your AC Installation

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

In Florida, we have to concern ourselves with air conditioning throughout the year. Although we can expect our heating systems to come on during the winter, air conditioners have to be prepared around the year. Make sure that you have a professional company like Steve Hoskins AC ready to help you with any AC issues you might encounter during the year, from repair to installation.

Speaking of installation: if you are planning to have new air conditioning installation in Rockledge, FL, either as a replacement for an old system or for a new home, you will need to consider the issue of ductwork. Standard air conditioners use ducts as the channels to send cooled air throughout a house. If you’ve previously had a central AC in your home, or a forced-air heater like a furnace, then you will already have a network of ducts in place.

However, just because you already have ducts in your home does not mean that air conditioning installation only requires putting the system in place and plugging it in. Getting an AC properly hooked to an existing system of ducts requires the work of professionals. This is one of the reasons that we strongly recommend you do not attempt to install an air conditioner on your own or hire inexperienced people to handle the work. If an AC isn’t connected correctly to the ducts, the faults in the connections will impair the system’s ability to provide proper levels of cooling and force it to work harder. Gaps in the connections with the ducts may also cause an infiltration of dust into the ducts and the air conditioner cabinet. This will be problematic for your AC and your air quality.

There is always another option that bypasses the issue of ducts entirely: ductless mini splits. These AC systems work the same way as standard air conditioners, except that instead of sending air through ducts, they use individual blower units placed throughout your home to supply you with cooled air. This gives you zone control over the temperatures in the rooms, along with the benefit of not needing ducts. This might be the best option for you if you do not have ductwork already installed in your home.

Whether you choose to hook up your new air conditioner to your existing ductwork or opt for a ductless system, make sure that you contact experts for your air conditioning installation in Rockledge, FL. Steve Hoskins AC has provided thorough air conditioning installations in Brevard County since 1985: you can trust us to give your installation the attention it deserves so you will get the most out of your new air conditioner.

Cocoa Beach, FL Air Conditioning FAQ: How Often Should I Change My Filter?

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

Your air filter helps strain dust and detritus out of the air before it gets into your air conditioning system. Dust can build up on the inner workings over time, affecting your air conditioner’s ability to function and even spreading dust through your home – exacerbating allergies and reducing the quality of air. Our climate doesn’t readily forgive a breakdown in your AC unit, and if you need to call for repairs in a sweltering summer heat wave, you won’t be happy. Changing your air filters is a reliable way to help avoid those kinds of problems, especially when they’re accompanied by regular maintenance sessions from a trained professional.

How often to change or clean your air filter depends on the specifics of your home, in particular the issue of pets. Dogs and cats can generate a lot of fur and dander, which circulates through the air conditioning system and gets caught in the filter. That means the filter’s effectiveness will be reduced the more pets you have, which increases the amount of dander the filter needs to catch. Similarly, if you have a sensitive person in your household, you want to keep the air as clean as possible. Someone with allergies night not have pets, but he or she will still need to change the filters more rapidly in order to keep contaminants from moving through his or her home.

If you notice that the air in your home seems dusty or notice some dirt on your vents, you should check your air filter. If you notice that you are changing the air filter frequently but you still have a dust problem, you might need duct cleaning.

All of which is a roundabout way of saying that a lot of factors are involved in figuring out how often you should change your filters. As a rule of thumb, a well-maintained home should probably change it about every three months. Drop that to two months if you have a dog or a cat, and one month if you suffer from allergies or have more than one pet. If you need air conditioning repair in  Cocoa Beach, FL, or any more information about maintaining your system, call Steve Hoskins AC!

Cocoa Beach, FL Air Conditioning Tip: Make Sure Your System is Sized Right

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Our warm weather often turns hot and muggy during the year, and a good air conditioning unit can be your best friend when the mercury levels climb. Naturally, you want your AC unit to be as effective as possible: providing cool, comforting air without costing you any more in your monthly electric bills than is necessary. Part of that comes with regular maintenance check-ups from a qualified service technician. But even before then, you can help yourself by following one key air conditioning tip: make sure your system is sized right.

Air conditioning units measure their cooling capacity in British thermal units (BTUs) per hour. The higher that number, the greater the space an air conditioner can effectively cool. If the AC unit doesn’t have enough BTUs to cover the space, it won’t be able to cool your home effectively (driving up energy costs and leaving your home less comfortable).

You might think that an AC unit with the highest possible BTUs per hour would be the most effective, but that’s not the case either. If an air conditioner cools the space too quickly, it will cycle on and off rapidly, which costs additional energy and creates excessive wear and tear on the system. In light of that, a properly sized unit is key to the most efficient air conditioning system possible.

In rough terms, a service technician can measure the space that needs to be cooled and come up with a corresponding number of BTUs that your air conditioning system will need. But making sure your system is sized right goes beyond that. The technician needs to consider the amount of insulation in your house, the presence of sunny windows that may elevate the indoor heat and myriad other factors that make each individual home unique.

If you want to make sure your system is sized right in order to get the most out of your air conditioning, Cocoa Beach, FL has a company ready to help. Steve Hoskins AC has served the area for over 25 years and is dedicated to total customer satisfaction. Call us for a consultation today.

Why Replace My Air Conditioning in Cocoa Beach, FL?

Monday, September 16th, 2013

Modern air conditioning is a must if you make your home in Cocoa Beach, FL. And your air conditioner may not be as modern as you think. It might be time for an upgrade, and Steve Hoskins AC is the company to turn to when you need the work done. We can also help you make the crucial choice about which kind of system will give you the best results.

We’re going to go over a few reasons you might want to replace your air conditioner:

Increase energy efficiency: If you’re considering a change in your AC, it’s probably because you know you have an older system. Even if it still pushes out the cold air you want, and its motors and fans keep humming, there’s a good chance that it’s putting a drain on your energy bills because years of wear are forcing it to work harder. If you’ve noticed that your electrical bills have climbed and remained high, getting a new air conditioner might solve the problem.

Avoid abrupt breakdowns: If your air conditioner has needed more repairs than usual during the last few years, even with regular maintenance, then the system is much more likely to have an abrupt shut down that could leave you very uncomfortable until repairs are made. Replacing your air conditioner with a new model reduces the risk that you could be stuck with a broken AC during the high heat.

Take advantage of new AC options: With new types of air conditioners now available, you might find that one of them fits your needs much better than your older one. With the availability of ductless systems and two-stage ACs, there are now choices that could provide you with better temperature control and more energy efficiency. Get an HVAC technician out to your home so you can get expert advice on what system will work best for your needs.

At Steve Hoskins AC, we know that making the choice to install a replacement air conditioner is a large one. We can make the process less burdensome with our skills and up-to-date knowledge. When you are ready for a new air conditioning system in Cocoa Beach, FL, contact us right away!

How Much Energy Does My Air Conditioning in Cape Canaveral, FL Use?

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

Even with the local sea breezes in its favor, most homes can’t go without air conditioning in Cape Canaveral, FL. A good AC unit provides strong relief from the heat and humidity of summer, and local residents likely treat it as a necessity rather than a luxury. But with that cool air comes an additional use of energy, which can translate to higher bills if you aren’t careful. In order to cut down on costs while still enjoying a cool, comfortable environment, you first need to determine how much energy your air conditioning unit uses.

The answer, of course, depends on the precise unit, and on the circumstances in your house. A 3-ton/36,000 BTU (British Thermal Unit) air conditioner – suitable for cooling about 1500 square feet of space in a hot Florida environment – will use about 3,500 watts per hour with an additional 5,000 watts to start up. Larger units obviously use more energy than smaller ones (one of the reasons why you don’t want a unit that’s too large for your home, since it will waste energy), and household components such as insulation and the presence of large sunny windows can add to the energy needed to properly cool a home.

Then there’s the question of the air conditioner’s age. An older unit with worn parts must use more energy to cool the same area than a more efficient unit with newer, up-to-date components. The SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating is a quick guide for determining how efficient a unit is. Most SEER ratings these days rank between 10 and 20 (the higher the number, he more efficient the ratio), though older models may rank as low as 6 or below. The EnergyStar rating – and its accompanying little blue sticker – go to air conditioning units with a SEER rating of 14 or above. That’s a good means of spotting an efficient AC unit.

If you’re concerned about your air conditioning unit’s energy use and want to make it more efficient, then give the Cape Canaveral, FL air conditioning experts at Steve Hoskins AC a call. We can discuss possible options with you, whether it be a maintenance call to clean dusty components, or the installation of a new air conditioning system. Our service area includes the whole of Cape Canaveral, FL, so don’t hesitate to contact us today!

How Your Air Conditioning in Rockledge, FL Lets You Know There’s a Problem

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013

Like the rest of the state, Rockledge, FL experiences warm temperatures and humidity year ‘round. That makes reliable air conditioning more than just a luxury, as cool, comfortable indoor temperatures can combat the heat and mugginess of the outdoors. When problems arise, you need to address them promptly: hiring a professional to examine the air conditioning system and correct the source of the issue, instead of just treating the symptoms.  Luckily, there are ways to determine if the air conditioning system has a problem. Here are some of the telltale signs:

  • Higher bills: If your monthly electric bills experience a sudden spike, but you’re not using any appliances more than you usually do, it could signal a problem with the air conditioning system. If the system has to work harder to cool the air – because of low refrigerant, a malfunctioning fan, a dirty filter, or one of any number of issues – then your bills are apt to go up.
  • Refusal to turn on: Obviously, if the air conditioning won’t turn on at all, there’s a problem. The issue could lie in the electrical system, with frayed or damaged wiring causing a short. It could also be an overloaded component inside the air conditioning unit itself. The condenser motor and other elements often come equipped with automatic shut-off switches, which turn the component off if it experiences damage or undue stress. The shut-off is intended to prevent more serious damage, as well as alerting you to the problem.
  • Low air flow or unduly warm air: If your air flow feels restricted when you turn it on, it could suggest a clog or obstruction in the system somewhere, or one ofthe blower fans may be damaged. Similarly, if the air flow is fine but the air is excessively warm, your refrigerant may be leaking or there may be a problem with the coils.
  • Strange noises: If your air conditioning unit starts making strange noises – humming, grinding, whistling or rattling – something is most likely wrong. It usually indicates an air leak or two parts rubbing against each other which should be dealt with promptly.

Regardless of the source of the trouble, a qualified expert can pinpoint it and correct it. When it comes to air conditioning in Rockledge, FL, the professionals at Steve Hoskins AC are ready and able to help. Contact us today to set up a service call.