Category Archives: Facts and Tips

Your HVAC Spring Cleaning Checklist

Spring is here! The sun is back, and the days are getting longer. Now is the perfect time to work your way through your spring cleaning list. Make sure you add your heating and cooling system maintenance to that list, too! Here are some important things to remember when it comes to your HVAC spring cleaning checklist.

#1: Schedule your spring tune-up.
Your body needs regular check-ups, and your car needs regular oil changes. Your heating system needs regular tune-ups, too! Professional HVAC maintenance is a critical part of keeping your system working well and running at peak efficiency. During your appointment, our team of HVAC technicians will clean the blower motor, clean and/or replace air filters, and talk to you about any issues they notice that could turn into potential problems later. We want to make sure your system is running as efficiently as possible, so you can save on your utility bill and not force the system to work too hard.

#2: Consider adding an air purification system to your home or commercial space.
Springtime allergies and cold viruses are a real drag. Sometimes the air you breathe is dirty and contaminated with harmful pathogens that contribute to sickness, asthma, or allergies. A reliable air purification system kills bacteria, spores, or other allergens that try to make their way into the air you breathe. This means you’ll breathe easy knowing that the air in your home or office is as clean as possible.

#3: Don’t forget your air filters.
When was the last time you checked your air filters? Dirty air filters translate to dirty air. Remember, the thicker they are, the more layers they have to collect dust, debris, and dirt. All of that debris will be recirculated into the air you breathe, too. We recommend that you change or clean your filters every 1-2 months.

Our team of heating and cooling experts at Specialty Heating and Cooling can help get your home or commercial system running at its peak! So, whether you need a maintenance appointment, a repair, or want to get a new system installed for spring, contact us today for details!

HVAC Noises You Shouldn’t Ignore

Your heating and cooling system is a complex machine that has a lot of different parts to it. When everything is operating at peak efficiency, it should only make a quiet humming as it blows the air out. If you have any unusual sounds coming from the machine, this could be a sign that something is wrong. Don’t ignore any HVAC noises! This could be a costly mistake.

Looking to troubleshoot before you call our team of experts at Specialty Heating and Cooling? Here are some of the most common sounds and what they could be trying to tell you.

Clanking, screaming, or banging:
Over time, parts inside your machine can become loose, become disconnected, or fall off. This could cause a clank or banging sound. Screaming noises are sometimes caused by refrigerant leaks or too much pressure in the compressor.

Screeching:
Metal on metal is never a pleasant sound. This could also indicate something is wrong with a broken belt, or a motor part. These are things that you should have a professional look at.

Humming:
This might indicate a loose wire or something else that could be wrong with the electrical portion of the machine. If you suspect something wrong with the electrical components, don’t use the machine. This could not only damage the machine further, but it could also be a fire hazard.

If there are any odd sounds or smells coming from your HVAC machine, don’t ignore them. Pay attention to what they are trying to tell you and be proactive by contacting our team of professionals at Specialty Heating and Cooling. We can interpret what the sounds mean and make sure things are fixed so your machine is running reliably.

Energy savings tips for your commercial building

As a business owner, you know that there are multiple costs associated with keeping your company running smoothly and successfully. Is saving money on the top of your priority list? Saved energy translates to saved money! So, here are some energy savings tips for your commercial building.

#1: Know how much energy your space uses.
When was the last time you checked how much energy your space uses on a weekly or monthly basis? Monitor this regularly.  This gives you a clear picture of what you’re using and where you can cut back.

#2: Don’t neglect professional maintenance.
Putting off professional HVAC tune-ups and maintenance could increase your risk for a system breakdown. It is also uses more energy and increases utility bills.  Routine annual service appointments give you the peace of mind you need. We’ll clean filters and ensure all internal electrical parts and other components of the system work properly. If we see anything that is broken or may break down later, we’ll go over that with you. A machine that’s running at maximum efficiency means enhanced energy savings for you.

#3: Find the right temperature and stick to it.
Changing the temperature on your thermostat consistently uses more energy and puts additional strain on your heating and cooling system. Also, make sure you don’t use your system in excess unless you need to. For example, if you don’t need to keep the area heated or cooled all day and night, consider setting the thermostat to ‘auto’ or save’ during off-hours.

#4: Upgrade your old system.
If your commercial system is more than 15 years old, chances are it is sucking valuable energy and needs to be replaced. A new system is energy efficient and reliable. Our team of experts at Specialty Heating and Cooling will provide options for you within your budget.

Your comfort is important to us! And we also think it’s important to do our part to decrease energy usage. We can help! Sometimes a simple tune-up is all you need. Other times, a full replacement will give you the best energy savings results! Contact us today for details.

 

Top reasons to upgrade your AC

Think it’s too early to plan for your air conditioning system? Well, think again! Lots of customers are looking forward to the spring and summer weather. Now is a perfect time to get your air conditioner installed and ready! Here are some of the main reasons why you should upgrade your AC system now.

#1: You’ll save money.
Did you know that you can save up to $600 right now when you buy a new system from us and install it before March 31, 2021? Here are the details:

    • $600 OFF 17 & 19 SEER Air Conditioners
    • $400 OFF 16 SEER Air Conditioners
    • $200 OFF 13 SEER Air Conditioners

Pricing cannot be combined with other offers, rebates, or incentives. Not sure what the final cost will be? It depends on the air conditioner’s size, your home’s size, and any existing duct systems that are in place. In addition, it depends on what installation requirements, permitting, and electrical work that needs to take place.

#2: Convenience.
Don’t wait to the hottest peak of summer weather to think about your AC system. Not only will you be miserably hot, but you may have to wait a long time to get everything installed. In the final months of winter our technicians have more flexibility in their schedule for air conditioning systems. And that added convenience is a huge bonus!

#3: You’ll have time to do your research.
A new air conditioning system is a big investment for your home. That’s why it’s important to take your time and do your research. Waiting until the summer when you need your air conditioner most, means you might feel pressured to decide on what system to buy, without having all the information you need. So if you plan now, you will have time to research your different options and ask the questions you need to feel comfortable about your purchase. You can trust our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling to provide plenty of options that fit within your budget that work with your home’s layout. We’ll even help explain the variety of energy efficient updates have been made to new systems in recent years, in addition to what smart thermostat options are available.

So contact us today to learn more about our AC special and to get a free estimate on your new system.

Why Changing Your Air Filter is Important

Your air filter is one of the most important parts of your heating system. And because it’s not easily seen, our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling often discovers that the filters are forgotten about. That’s why we’re here to remind you to clean and change your air filter regularly. Doing this will help prolong the life of your system and help you breathe cleaner air.

The importance of air filters:
Dust, debris, and other particles try to make their way into the ductwork of your home. If this debris gets into the actual heating system, it could wreak havoc and cause some big damage to it. The filter is essentially a layer of protection. It prevents dust and other harmful air particles from getting into the system, as well as the air you breathe inside your home or office.

Reasons to change or clean your filter regularly:

Reason #1: Clogged filters restrict airflow and decrease efficiency.
Restricted airflow means your system is working really hard to do its job. This makes the machine more inefficient, using more energy and ultimately increasing your utility bill. Clogged filters can also cause the system to short cycle, which puts additional strain on the machine.

Reason #2: Increased wear and tear.
Your heating system is a big investment for your home. By taking care of it and staying on top of regular maintenance, your system should last 10-15 years. But if you neglect it, it could break down in less than 10 years. That’s an expensive mistake and something that you can easily avoid. Simple air filter changes or cleaning is easy. But dipping into your savings for a costly repair or having to finance a new system before you were planning to, could be stressful.

At Specialty Heating and Cooling, we care about the quality of air you breathe and want to make sure that system you have in your home or commercial space lasts as long as possible. We are happy to help answer your air filter questions and can also help with repairs and free quotes for a new system. Contact us today!

Why is My Furnace Blowing Cold Air?

At this time of year in the Northwest, our furnaces are some of our closest friends. The last thing you want to have is a furnace that malfunctions – brrrr! But don’t panic. While it might seem alarming that your furnace is blowing cold air, there are a few common reasons why.

#1: The furnace isn’t fully warmed up.
When you first turn on the furnace, it’s common for it to blow a blast of cool air. It often takes a few minutes for the air to feel warm. That’s because the cooler air needs to come through the vents. Give the furnace some time to warm up. Think of it kind of like letting your faucet water warm up – you’ll get cold water at first, then it will gradually get warmer. If the furnace isn’t blowing warm air within a few minutes, there is likely something else going on and a service call to our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling may be in order.

#2: Your thermostat may be on the wrong setting.
Is the air from your furnace constantly cool? Check your thermostat to make sure that the fan is set to ‘auto.’ If it’s set to ‘on’ only, then it will run even when the furnace isn’t heating the air. Keeping it on ‘auto’ will ensure that the fan only runs when the furnace is heating the air and bringing that air inside.

#3: Your filter is clogged.
When was the last time you changed or cleaned your air filter? Dirty air filters create problems for your furnace. It restricts your airflow causing your furnace to run longer, using more energy. If this goes on for a long time, the furnace can overheat, and this brings only cold air in. We recommend replacing or cleaning your air filter on a consistent basis for the type of filter and the use within the home  This helps your system work more efficiently and prolongs the life of the system.

Are you still having problems after troubleshooting? There may be something more serious going on liked a broken circuit board, a faulty igniter, or something else. Our professionally licensed team of experts at Specialty Heating and Cooling will determine what the issue is and talk about what your options are. Maybe a simple repair is in order, or a furnace replacement might be the best choice. Contact us today for your questions or to schedule a service call. We’re standing by to help so you can stay comfortable all winter long!

Signs Your Furnace Needs Fixing

When the temperature drops, you need a furnace that’s reliable and ready to keep you warm and comfortable. But as with any machine, time and usage can cause wear and tear. That means your furnace may need repair. How do you know that it needs fixing? Here are some common signs.

#1: Weird odors or sounds.
Your heating system should never have any loud noises or odd odors coming from it. Don’t ignore any smells – especially a rotten egg odor or a smoke or burning scent. This could signal something dangerous. If you hear something banging or clanging, it could mean that there is something loose or broken inside. Screeching noises could indicate a belt issue.  Even if the sound or smell doesn’t happen all the time, it should be looked at immediately. Prolonging a repair can increase energy usage or put extra strain on the machine, which can cause even more damage to other parts of it.

#2: A spike in energy bill.
Did your last energy bill make your eyes go wide? Maybe the cost went up so much, you thought there was a mistake. If utility costs weren’t raised, but your bill increased a lot, you may have a problem with furnace efficiency. Our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling can look and determine what the issue is. Preventative maintenance appointments are one way to do that. We will diagnose the problem and get it fixed and make sure the system is running at peak efficiency before we leave. If you notice a spike in your utility costs, let us help get everything repaired and running well again so you can save money and reduce energy usage.

The sooner you catch furnace problems, the better it is for your home or office comfort. Not ignoring problems helps prolong the life of the system. Your comfort is our priority. So, contact us today to get your preventative maintenance or repair appointment scheduled.

Reasons Why to Go Ductless in 2021

It’s the truth: we love ductless systems at Specialty Heating and Cooling. Why? They are an affordable solution for our customers that help save energy and money in the long run. They are a great solution for homes that don’t have traditional HVAC ductwork in them. They’re also versatile, meaning they can be installed in new construction homes or offices, accessory dwelling units, shops, garages, or historic homes. Thinking about replacing your heating or cooling system in 2021? Let us help.

What’s a ductless system do?
The Pacific Northwest is blessed to have all four seasons. That means wintertime gets cold (and wet) and summers can get really hot! Tired of dealing with bulky window air conditioning units in the summer? Hate opening the heating bill during the winter to see prices increased? Ductless heat pumps can help! In just one system, you can have energy efficient heating AND cooling. Simply use your machine’s remote to reset the setting to heating or cooling and enjoy the comfort that it brings year-round.

One of the main benefits of installing a ductless system is the energy savings that it brings. You will notice an immediate difference in your energy bill after installation. In addition, you can feel confident that you’re doing your part to reduce excess energy usage and help save the environment.

These systems are affordably priced and can be mounted in the ceiling or on the wall. They have a sleek design and won’t clash with your home’s unique décor. Summer heat? No big deal! Cold winter weather? No problem. With a simple touch of a button, you can keep your home’s temperature exactly how you want it.

Want to learn more about ductless systems? We’ll answer your questions and help you determine which one is right for your home and it’s unique layout. Our experienced team of professionals at Specialty Heating and Cooling will work with your budget so you can find the best option for your home. The New Year has arrived and it’s a great time to get your home’s heating and cooling system secure and comfortable for years to come.

Winter Fire Safety Tips

House fires increase during the winter months. The reason: people are inside more often. Electricity is almost always on, furnaces, candles, and fireplaces are in use. Being a victim to a house fire is a very scary experience to go through. Do what you can to stay safe by following these winter fire safety tips.

#1: Don’t neglect maintenance and servicing on your furnace.
Brrr…winter weather means your furnace is working hard to keep you comfortable. To ensure there aren’t any unexpected furnace breakdowns or expensive repairs, make furnace maintenance a top priority. A tuned up system by our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling ensures its running at peak efficiency and that no issues will pop up that could create a safety hazard.

#2: Don’t cover vents.
Your heating vents provide the critical warm air that you want this winter. Make sure that no vents are blocked or covered. Blocking vents with furniture, curtains, or other fabrics and materials not only hinders air flow and causes unevenly heated rooms, but it could also cause the materials to get too hot, which could be a fire risk.

#3: Check smoke alarms.
Carbon monoxide and smoke detectors save lives. Unfortunately, many homeowners forget to test them. Many house fires can be prevented with regular testing and battery changes. Check them every month to make sure they are in good working order. That way, you can depend on them to alert you in a fire emergency.

#4: Don’t use space heaters.
They keep you warm, but portable heaters can be dangerous. If you do choose to use a space heater, never leave them plugged in while you leave and don’t put them near loose fabric or bedding. If children or pets are in the home, keep them away from the heater because they get hot to the touch and could burn.

Pacific Northwest winters are chilly, so get ready to cozy up inside. Remember that a reliable furnace is the key to staying comfortable this season. Contact us today for your maintenance or repair appointment, or to talk to us about furnace replacement options.

3 Tips to Keep You Warm and Comfortable This Holiday Season

With winter on the horizon, we are finding ourselves inside more often because it’s getting colder and colder outside. With the pandemic adding to our time indoors, it’s important to find ways to stay warm, comfortable, and safe this holiday season. Follow these tips to keep your home’s heating system running reliably, no matter how cold the weather gets.

#1: Schedule your annual preventative maintenance appointment.
Your heating system is a machine that requires attention. Just like your vehicle needs a tune-up or an oil changes periodically, so does your furnace. This ensures that it’s running at peak efficiency and that everything is working as it should. Our experienced team of technicians at Specialty Heating and Cooling will run an energy check, thoroughly inspect the internal and external components of the machine, and let you know if we spot anything that needs to be adjusted or repaired. This gives you the peace of mind you need knowing that your heating system won’t break down unexpectedly on the coldest winter day.

#2: Check smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.
When was the last time you changed the batteries in your smoke detectors? Have you tested your carbon monoxide detector lately? Now – at the change of the season – is the perfect time to check these important products in your home. They play a critical role in keeping you and your family safe.

#3: Change your air filters.
Air filter maintenance is a simple home maintenance task to-do that is easily forgotten about or neglected. Replace or clean your filters every 1 to 2 months. Clean air filters bring cleaner air into your home and they also help with your system’s overall efficiency. Changing your air filters also helps prolong the life of your system, so you can get the maximum life out of it and stay comfortable for years to come.

We understand how important it is for you to stay warm and comfortable during this cold winter season. So if your heating system isn’t up to the test of winter weather, contact our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling for help. We can assist with repairs, maintenance, or provide a free quote on a system replacement. Contact us today for details!