Category Archives: Our Blog

Reasons to Replace Your Furnace and AC Simultaneously

We have been getting a lot of calls recently from customers wondering if they should replace their furnace and air conditioner at the same time. Your heating and cooling equipment works together to form a full HVAC system. The furnace, blower, and evaporator coils are located inside the home and are connected to the ductwork. AC units will sit outside the home. Together, these systems work alongside each other to provide comfort all year long.

Replacing these together can have several advantages. Your heating and cooling system is an important investment in your home and will last for years to come. But making that decision requires some research. Here are some reasons to replace your furnace and air conditioner at the same time.

#1: The system(s) are old.
If your furnace and air conditioner are over 15 years old, it is time to consider upgrading. The older your system is, the more prone it is to expensive repairs or even a full system breakdown. These can be costly and come at unexpected times, which can cause added stress. Replacing both at the same time will help maximize your investment and provide you reliable comfort for a long time.

#2: Utility bills are rising.
Have you noticed that your energy bills are consistently going up? This could mean that your HVAC system is not functioning at its peak anymore. In fact, it could indicate that there is an internal problem. If your system is efficient, it is working harder than it has to, and that causes your utility bill to skyrocket, which is never a pleasant surprise.

While it often makes sense to replace the furnace and air conditioner at the same time, we do not usually recommend doing this if the furnace is less than 10 years old. In most instances, it makes more sense to repair the unit.

Not sure if your home needs both systems replaced? Our no-pressure team at Specialty Heating and Cooling is ready to help you make your final decision. We will provide information on what systems could work for your home and will work within your budget. And, if a full replacement is not needed quite yet, we will let you know. We will also help with any repairs that are necessary to help get things functioning in time for the warmer springtime weather. Contact us today for information!

Why are some rooms too hot or too cold with the AC on?

Our experienced team of technicians at Specialty Heating & Cooling regularly works on homes with multiple levels. We often hear that homeowners are finding it difficult to obtain comfortable temperatures that are the same from room to room. Have you noticed that the upstairs is warmer than the downstairs, or some rooms are not as cool as the others? Inconsistent temperatures are frustrating. That is why we offer zoning systems to help.

What is a zoning system?
Zoned temperature control is a great way to keep your home efficiently cooled or heated. There are several thermostats placed throughout the home that are wired to one on control panel that pumps air through your home’s forced air system via the ductwork. The thermostats recognize the specific zone temperature and will open and close dampers accordingly to make sure the temperature is correct for the specific area.

The benefits of zoning:

#1: Money savings
Zoning is a great way to save money on utility costs! You can simply adjust temperatures according to usage. You will not overheat or overcool your home and use energy that increases your utility bill. At the end of the year, this could help you with save big. Each zone will heat or cool independently from other areas of your home. It is a concept that translates to real savings at the end of the year.

#2: Reduced wear and tear
Your system works hard to keep you comfortable all year long. If it doesn’t need to work as hard to cool or heat your home, you’ll help prolong the life of the system. Because you will only be providing air conditioning or heat to the spaces that you designate, your system will last longer & it will function at peak efficiency.

A zoning system can benefit almost any home, but especially homes with two levels or more – even those with sunrooms or garage apartments. Utilizing a zoning system will give you the technology you need to be comfortable from room to room, no matter what the weather is doing outside.

So, contact us today to talk about zoning system options! We’ll work with you to determine what system is right for your home based on its unique layout. Most of all, we will work with your budget! Contact us today to ask questions about zoning systems or to schedule an appointment!

Is Your AC Ready for Warmer Weather?

The weather is beautiful lately! Warmer weather will be here to stay, starting soon. Summer will be here before we know it and now is the time to get your air conditioning ready. Here are some reasons why you should act now to get your AC tuned up and functioning well before hot days become the norm.

#1: AC tune-ups improve your energy efficiency.
Saving money is something that many families are really focusing on right now. That means determining how you can save energy around your home. Did you know that regular maintenance on your air conditioner will reduce excess energy use? Our experienced team at Specialty Heating and Cooling will clean coils, blades, and other internal components. We will run an energy efficiency check, make sure that the filters are cleaned, and ensure that everything is operating at peak efficiency. Clean systems will move and operate as they were intended to and that means you won’t see spikes in your energy bill.

#2: AC tune-ups make your system last longer.
Nothing is built to last forever, unfortunately. However, a quality air conditioning system installed by our experienced team will last you for many years if you take care of it. Just like a car needs oil changes and regular tune-ups, so does your air conditioner! We often see systems that have not been taken care of and unfortunately, these service calls usually require expensive repairs and sometimes even full system replacements. Basic maintenance keeps your system functioning well and ultimately, will make it last longer.

#3: Tune-ups ensure that the system is working to bring in clean air.
Outdoor air quality is something we hear a lot about. But did you know that indoor air quality is often worse than the outdoors? A clean, tuned-up air conditioning system helps cool the air, but it also will help eliminate harmful particles from entering the air you breathe. Sometimes debris, dirt, dust, pollen, and other pollutants can make their way into your home via your system. A tuned-up system will greatly improve your air quality.

Don’t wait until the summer heat is here to get your appointment schedule. Now is the time to act & get your system maintained. Keeping your air conditioning in the best shape possible is the key to surviving the upcoming warm months. Contact us today to schedule an appointment or to talk to us about a full system replacement.

Heat Pumps Vs. Air Conditioners

The Pacific Northwest gives us a little bit of everything when it comes to the weather. We are no stranger to rain – and lots of it. So, when spring and summer warm weather arrives, we need to be prepared. If you are looking to add, replace or upgrade your cooling system there are several options.  Here are the differences between air conditioners and heat pumps.

What are the main differences between a heat pump and an air conditioner?
Both systems use indoor and outdoor coils that transfer refrigerant. AC systems absorb heat the passes over the indoor coil inside the system. That means that during warm weather, cool air will be brought in through your home’s ductwork and the hot air is pushed out. Heat pumps on the other hand work for both heating and cooling. They take outside heat to warm your home during the winter. In the summer, they remove the hot air and bring cold air in. One system: two functions! No matter what time of year it is, a heat pump will bring you the comfortable temperature that you want.

What system is right for you?
We understand that a new heating and cooling system for your home is an investment that requires planning. That’s why our team at Specialty Heating & Cooling will help you determine which system is right for your home and work with your budget! There are a variety of systems that could be great options for you including:

Carrier Infinity Series
Infinity 20 Heat Pump with Greenspeed Intelligence
Infinity 19 Heat Pump
Infinity 18VS Heat Pump
Infinity 16 Heat Pump
Infinity 15 Heat Pump

Central Air Conditioner
Infinity 21 Central Air Conditioner
Infinity 19VS Central Air
Infinity 17
Infinity 16
Performance 17

Contact us today for information on what system is right for your home’s layout and your budget. And, right now you can benefit from Carrier Cool Cash for a limited time only! Homeowners may quality for a Cool Cash rebate by purchasing qualifying Carrier equipment between March 16, 2020 and June 30, 2020. Equipment must be installed, and claims submitted by 6 PM and installed by July 31, 2020. Purchase of qualifying products required. So, ask our team for more details!

COVID-19 Update from Specialty Heating & Cooling

This week, Governor Kate Brown issued a stay-at-home order for all of Oregon. Our team at Specialty Heating & Cooling is committed to serving you safely.

As a company, we continue to strive for the highest level of caution – from our first meeting with you to the very end of clean up after a product installation. Fortunately, most of your heating and cooling equipment is located outside of your living environment. Please be assured that we are taking all the steps necessary to do our part in stopping the spread of coronavirus.

We are taking the following precautions to better serve Oregon customers:

  • All service technicians, installers and consultants are outfitted with gloves, masks, booties, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes
  • We will keep our conversations and time limited with you, only providing essential services in your home
  • Both our office and field teams will remain home if they are not feeling well or if someone in their home is not feeling well
  • We communicate with our teams consistently to ensure that they are healthy
  • We respect the 6-feet rule of social distance
  • We will not have you sign anything that is unnecessary & have protocols in place to limit interaction and signatures required on iPads

We are working hard to ensure our team and clients are safe, and we ask the same of you.  Please alert us if someone in your home is experienced flu-like symptoms prior to us entering your home or has traveled outside the United States within the last 14 days.

Many of us will be spending more time indoors in the next several weeks. Now is a great time to prepare your system so you can stay comfortable. Here’s how:

  • Change your HVAC filters: We sell filters if you need one! You can pay for the filter over the phone and will leave outside for pick up in our covered area or we can deliver to your home.
  • Schedule your annual tune-up if you feel comfortable; many times, we do not need to enter your home.
  • Schedule repair for your HVAC system that is not running at its peak or if you don’t have reliable heat.
  • Invest in a whole home duct purification system. We are currently offering the Reme Halo by RGF or the Air Scrubber by Aerus, while supplies last. Contact us for more details.
  • We also offer water heater replacement! Visit our website for our NO appointment process.
  • Currently, Carrier is offering Cool Cash rebates or low payment 0% financing for equipment replacement or for air conditioner installations.

We value our clients and their safety, and we will continue to send updates as we navigate the information that is sent out.

We’re Not Comfortable Until You Are!

Warm Regards,

Cory & Sarah Streeter, and the Specialty Heating & Cooling Team

What Are REME® Halo and REME® LED Air Purifiers?

Today, there is a lot of discussion about air quality and breathing clean air. In the Pacific Northwest especially, we spend a lot of our winter and early spring days inside because the weather is cold and rainy. Did you know that indoor air is often 10 times more polluted than the air outside? Your indoor air quality matters and finding ways to keep the air purified and clean is critical to your health. The REME® Halo and REME® LED air purifiers can help! Here are some details about why these systems are great in helping you take control of your indoor air quality.

REME HALOTM Whole Home In-Duct Air Purifier
Say goodbye to bacteria and other pollutants that cause sickness with this system. The dual ionizers reduce airborne particles including mold spores, dust, dander, and pollen and it can kill up to 99% of bacteria, viruses and mold. The REME® reduces sneeze germs by 99% within three feet. In addition, it can kill 99% of viruses that live on your home’s surfaces. This system is easily installed to work with your existing HVAC system to offer clean air to your entire home – not just one room.

HALO-LED™ Whole Home In-Duct Air Purifier
This air purification system is the only LED in-duct, whole home system that is mercury-free and zero ozone compliant. It reduces airborne pollutants and contaminants that cause sickness due to bacteria, viruses and mold. It also reduces smoke, odors, VOCs, dust, and allergens. The replaceable LED cell module has a 2.5x longer life than other UV lamp technologies and includes automatic self-cleaning ionizers to help harmful particles from getting in the air you breathe.

Learn more about this system here:

Your home should have the cleanest air possible and we are committed to helping you with that. We are qualified installers of these systems! So, contact our team at Specialty Heating & Cooling to learn more about these incredible systems and schedule your appointment for an install.

Tips for getting your system ready for springtime

Spring is right around the corner. That means it’s time to start thinking about how to get your heating and cooling system ready to go for the change of season. Here are some tips on how to get your system ready for springtime.

Tip #1: Ensure the outside unit is clean and clear.
The cold winter months bring lots of wind, rain, and ice. That means your outside unit likely has some debris that has accumulated around the outside unit. When the sunshine comes out, head outside to clean and clear the unit so there is no restricted airflow. That includes cleaning the top of the system of dirt and debris. If this isn’t cleaned off, it could hinder the system’s performance and the internal components could even be impacted. A system that is working unnecessarily hard could cause your utility bill to increase and it could mean your system is prone to needless breakdown.

Tip #2: Clean or replace air filters.
It’s easy to forget about the filters in your furnace or AC unit. But this is a simple thing to do and it makes a big impact on how your system performs. Dirty air filters mean you’re breathing dusty, dirty air. Not to mention, your system won’t be working at peak efficiency. Be sure you clean or replace your filters every other month or as needed.  This helps reduce the flow of pollen, dust, dander, or other bacteria that makes its way into the air you breathe.

Tip #3: Upgrade your thermostat.
How old is your thermostat? Spring is a great time to get a new programmable thermostat installed in your home. These regulate the temperature of your home night and day, even when you’re away. Set your desired temperature based on your schedule and let it do the work for you! If you are at work during the day and don’t need to heat or cool your home, program it to turn down a bit, then turn back up before you get home. Programmable thermostats are a great investment for your home and can save up to 20% a year on your energy bill.

Spring is a beautiful time of year in the Northwest. This is a time that our experienced team at Specialty Heating and Cooling gets very busy, too! So, plan ahead and get your springtime preventative maintenance appointment scheduled. Or, if a new system is required for your home, we can help with that too! We’ll find the perfect system for your home’s layout and your budget. Contact us today for more details!

How Your Heating System Can Keep You Healthy

Cold winter days are here and unfortunately, that means there are more viruses going around. A lot of people are sick and looking for ways to stay healthy for the rest of the season. Did you know that your heating system and the overall indoor air quality in your home can impact your health? Indoor air is often dirtier than outdoor air. Our team at Specialty Heating and Cooling can help you with indoor air quality solutions that can help keep you healthier.

Air Scrubber:
Ahhhh…clean air. There’s nothing like it! Purified air in your home means you’re breathing healthier air. The Air Scrubber uses ActivePure™ technology, which is proven to purify the air by its germicidal UV light wave system. This process uses molecules of oxygen and hydrogen that travel through the unit, as to freshen and clean the air molecules that enter the air at home. It can eliminate 90% of the contaminants in only 30 minutes.

Duct Cleaning:
Many people don’t think twice about the ductwork in their home. But, if you neglect cleaning them, you may be blowing dirty, contaminated air right back into your home’s heating system. Ductwork can harbor bacteria, fungi, dust mites, and more. These all contribute to health issues! But never fear, we can help! We can clean your ductwork through our powerful HEPA level filtration machine. In 4 to 6 hours, the ducts in your home will be clean and you can breathe confidently knowing there aren’t contaminants in the air.

Advanced Filtration:
Air purification systems are a reliable way to keep the air in your home clean all year long. These systems clean 99% of germs, viruses, mold, and bacteria. In addition, they capture pollen, pet dander, smoke, and other pollutants that contribute to dirty air. We offer several top-notch systems that will work in tandem with your HVAC system.

So, say goodbye to sickness this winter with these indoor air quality solutions! Contact us today for more information on what option will work best for you!

Top Reasons You Should Replace Your Water Heater

The availability of warm, running water is necessary for households around the country. Whether it’s a warm bath or hot water to clean your dishes in, people rely on hot water to complete day to day tasks. That means your water heater is put to good use each day and over time, it may start showing signs that it needs replacing. Here are some of the main signs that your water heater needs to be replaced.

#1: Time.
No product will last forever, unfortunately. Water heaters will generally last for about a decade before they need to be replaced. If it’s not heating water like it should or it’s starting to leak, it may be showing signs of its age. If you have lived in your home at least that long and the water heater hasn’t been replaced, then you will need to plan on replacing it.

#2: Noise.
Is the water heater making a lot of noise at the tank? As it ages, it can start to rumble as it starts to heat up the water. This could be because it’s inefficient and it’s taking more energy and strain to heat the water. If your water heater is making noises, don’t ignore it. It could be a sign that something is wrong, and damage could occur if you don’t pay attention.

#3: Leaking.
Sometimes an old water heater will start to leak, leaving water on the floor around the tank. Leaks are never a good thing to have, as it could cause damage to your property that could be expensive and inconvenient. Leaks are usually caused by expansion of metal in the tank and as the water heater gets older, a fracture can happen. Small amounts of water will start leaking through these gaps as the water continues to heat each cycle. Over time, this could cause ruined carpeting or hardwood flooring, saturated belongings in the area, or even mold build up.

#4: Not heating.
One of the most obvious signs of an old water heater is water that simply isn’t warm. This could be caused by a broken heating element, a mis-adjusted thermostat, or simply that the water heater is not working as it should anymore.

Water is probably the most necessary item in your household, so if it fails, you are left without hot water, you’re looking at things becoming very inconvenient for a while. We can help! Our experienced team at Specialty Heating and Cooling can help get you a new water heater installed and running efficiently. We will talk to you about what tank size is most appropriate for your home and make sure it is within your budget. Watch our YouTube video about water heaters here, then contact us to talk to us about our new water heater program! Let us help you get your new one installed!

 

Tips for Getting Your Home Ready for Fall

Fall surely feels like it has arrived this week with cold mornings and sunny afternoons! Now is a great time to work around your home to get things prepared for the fall and winter seasons ahead. Wondering what you should prioritize to get your home ready for fall? Let us help.

Tip #1: Check your thermostat.
How old is your thermostat? Fall is a great time to upgrade to a new programmable thermostat. These regulate temperatures day and night in your home, even when you’re not there! Simply set your desired temperature based on your schedule and let it do the rest of the work. For example, if you’re gone during the day, don’t heat the house. Program the thermostat to reduce the temperature while you’re away. Then, schedule it to turn up right before you get home. Easy! Programmable thermostats will help save up to 20% on your utility bill yearly.

Tip #2: Schedule preventative maintenance on your heating system.
Regular professional maintenance on your heating system means it will use energy with greater efficiency. This translates to saved money each month. Not to mention, tune-ups will help increase the lifespan of the unit. Unfortunately, our service team sees many heating systems that require expensive repairs. Sometimes we even those that are totally non-functional because basic maintenance has been neglected.  Fall is the best time to get your system serviced. You will head into fall and winter knowing that your system is reliable and ready to go.

Tip #3: Install a reliable carbon monoxide alarm.
If you don’t already have one of these, it’s important to get one right away. These alarms work a lot like smoke detectors but will detect unhealthy levels of carbon monoxide. If it senses something, it alerts you immediately. To avoid carbon monoxide leaks,  never heat your home with a gas stove and if you need to use a space heater, never leave it unattended. Ensure that your heating system’s mechanical parts are working well too, as breakdowns in your system could mean carbon monoxide could leak into the air you breathe.

Fall is a beautiful time of year in the Pacific Northwest! Schedule your preventative maintenance appointment with our experienced team at Specialty Heating and Cooling so you can enjoy the autumn. If you need a programmable thermostat, we’ll help with that too! Contact us today – we’re standing by to help keep you comfortable all year long!