Tag Archives: HVAC

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.

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!

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.

SHC Cares Food Drive

Did you know that in 2018 we launched our #SHCCares campaign? This community outreach campaign encourages our employees and customers to give back to the community that they live and work in. This year, the holidays look and feel a little bit different. But that didn’t stop us from finding ways to keep some our annual traditions alive. One of those is supporting the Good Neighbor Center in Tigard with our annual employee food drive. We have done this for more than a decade! In addition to this food drive, we adopted a family of five this year. 2020 has negatively impacted so many people. We are so thrilled to be able to do our part to help those that are struggling and need an extra hand.

“It’s wonderful to see our team members getting involved and donating to such a great cause this year. It brings so much joy to help others in need! We look forward to paying it forward again next year and for many years after that,” said Sarah Streeter, co-owner and general manager at Specialty Heating and Cooling.

The Good Neighbor Center is a non-profit organization in Tigard, OR that provides housing stabilization programs and schooling stabilization for children.   Each year over 1,400 volunteers help with the day-to-day operations and projects to help subsidize and support the Good Neighbor Center efforts.  The Good Neighbor Center was founded in 1999, serving 9 families at a time through their 36-bed facility.   To learn more about the Good Neighbor Center visit their website. Or to learn more their current needs list to see how you can donate, visit here.

It is an honor to know that we have done what we can to help individuals and families have a wonderful Christmas. To learn more about we have done previously in our SHCCares program, visit our website here.

How to Get Your System Ready for Freezing Temps

It’s officially November and colder weather will be here soon. Freezing temperatures can be uncomfortable. So, is your heating system ready to keep you warm? Here are some tips on how to weatherize your home and get your system ready for freezing temps.

#1: Get your preventative maintenance appointment scheduled.
Annual preventative maintenance is very important. It helps prolong the life of your system and it also keeps things running efficiently. That translates to a more reliable system and less likelihood of a furnace system breakdown. During your appointment, we will make sure to clean your filters, look closely at all of the internal workings of the machine, and talk to you about issues that may become problematic later. We’ll make sure things are fixed and ready to go so you can rely on your system all season long.

#2: Get your ductwork cleaned.
Duct cleaning helps you breathe cleaner air. Indoor air quality is incredibly important – especially as you head into the winter months when viruses and sicknesses tend to peak. Our outstanding team of professionals at Specialty Heating and Cooling can clean the ductwork in your home thoroughly through our powerful HEPA level filtration machine. In 4 to 6 hours. This will leave the ductwork completely cleaned and you can take a deep breath knowing the air is cleaner.

#3: Consider a programmable thermostat installation.
Programmable thermostats are a fantastic way to stay comfortable and save energy in the long run. Program the furnace to turn down while you’re away or asleep and turn back up again before you get home or wake up. This simple programming adjustment can save a lot every year and will help you keep your home more evenly heated this winter. They work with any existing heating system and are affordably priced, too.

Winter can get chilly and you’ll need to rely on your heating system – no questions asked! Get your routine preventative maintenance appointment scheduled right away, then talk to us about programmable thermostat options. We can help ensure you can stay comfortable through the rest of the fall season and into the winter, so contact us today!

Should you repair or replace your AC unit?

Summer in the Pacific Northwest is here, and hot days will stick around for a while. Is your air conditioning having a hard time keeping you cool? If you have an AC unit that is 10 to 15 years old, are you wondering if it is worth repairing or not?

Repair or replace: which one is better?
Our team of experts at Specialty Heating and Cooling diagnose your air conditioning issues quickly. We talk to you about what the issue is and how it needs to be repaired. If the system is less than 10 years old, it is worth fixing, especially if the cost of the repair is reasonably priced. However, if you have invested in continuous repairs over the years – especially on a machine that is 10-15 years old or older, it’s likely futile. Don’t throw away hard earned money on an air conditioning unit that will likely break down soon. It makes more sense to invest in a new, energy efficient air conditioning system that gives you the peace of mind you need for the next several years of hot, summer weather.

A new air conditioning system has many benefits to you as the homeowner!

New air conditioning systems are incredibly energy efficient! They’ll help with utility savings during the heat of summer. They also work in tandem with your furnace to clean and filter the air. That means you’ll breathe cleaner air inside and reduce annoying summer allergy or asthma symptoms. We proudly carry and install Carrier products that work with your home and your budget. Some of the most popular options include:

  • Comfort Series
  • Infinity Series
  • Performance Series
  • Central Air Conditioning Systems
  • Ductless Heat Pumps

The early fall season is usually warm, too, and this is a great time to get a system installed. Waiting until the beginning of the year could mean you pay more. And, you may not be able to take advantage of current deals and promotions that are happening. Don’t delay in contacting our team of experienced heating and cooling specialists! We commit to helping our customers stay comfortable all year long, so contact us today for information on your replacement or repair.

How To Improve Airflow in Your Home This Summer

Does the air inside your home feel muggy or stuffy? Poor indoor air quality can make you uncomfortable – especially during the warm summer months. It can even contribute to feelings of sluggishness, which isn’t fun when all you want to do is get outside and soak up the sun. Here are some tips on how to improve air flow in your home.

#1: Check for airflow blockages.
Are all of the vents inside of your home clear? Closed or blocked air registers or vents will obstruct air flow. This can cause your system to work harder than necessary and create unneeded wear and tear on it. Be sure to keep your air registers open and move any furniture, rugs, or drapes that are blocking them.

#2: Stay on top of air filter replacement and cleaning.
This is a home maintenance to-do item that many people forget about. But regular cleaning or replacing of your air filters is essential to maintaining a long lifespan for your system. In addition, dirty air filters bring in dirty air to your home, which can be especially harmful for those living with summer allergies or yearlong asthma. Clogged air filters also keep air from flowing freely into your home. We recommend cleaning and/or replacing your filters every other month or longer depending on the type of air filtration system you may have.

#3: Keep your outdoor HVAC unit clear.
Springtime brings plenty of wind and rain. Now that the warm summer weather is here, it’s a great time to get outside and clean the outdoor unit of your heating and cooling system. This can easily accumulate debris or dirt over time, so keep it cleaned off so there is unobstructed airflow.

Following these simple tips will improve air flow and provide a solution for stuffy, dirty air. Perhaps your old, outdated heating and cooling system just simply isn’t up to the task of keeping you comfortable any longer. We can help! We’ve been serving customers in Oregon for more than three decades! Contact our experienced team of HVAC professionals at Specialty Heating and Cooling today.

 

Ways to Avoid AC System Breakdown

Summer is officially here, and we have already had some hot days on record. You have probably started using your air conditioning system to stay comfortable. Is it not running as well as it could be? Maybe it is making some unusual noises. Or maybe nothing is wrong, and you want to ensure that your AC works all summer long. Here are some ways that you can avoid unnecessary air conditioning breakdown.

#1: Schedule your preventative maintenance appointment.
Now that summer is here, it is important to get your system tuned up. Our team of experienced HVAC technicians will ensure that the internal components of the system are working well. We will also run an energy efficiency check, change or clean air filters, and recommend any repairs or replacements that helps keep the system working at its peak. We will also clean the inside, including the coils and blower motor. Servicing appointments are quick and efficient. They will give you the peace of mind you need, too.

#2: Change or clean air filters.
Air filters play a crucial part in the operation of your air conditioning system. When the filters get clogged, they will negatively impact your indoor air quality. And it causes the system to work harder than necessary. Over time, this creates unneeded wear and tear on the system, and it could cause premature breakdowns. Set a calendar reminder to clean and/or replace your air filters every other month, at the very least. Your system will last longer, and you won’t be surprised with an unexpected repair or full system replacement.

Unfortunately, your air conditioner won’t last forever. But if you take care of it well through the years, it will last for a long time. Regular cleaning and professional preventative maintenance appointments will ensure that the system is ready to go all summer long. Our schedule is booking up quickly with the warm weather here now, so contact us right away to get your appointment scheduled.

Maybe your current air conditioning system is not up to the task of keeping you cool for another summer. We’ll help you with affordable options on a new Carrier system! We offer variety of financing options available to help make your investment convenient and easy.

What to Do If Your AC Is Not Blowing Cold Air

Warm weather is back this week! As we head into June and the rest of the summer months, the heat becomes a norm. Your air conditioner will become an important part of your day to day life, but what if it is not blowing cold air? This could be concerning. Here are some reasons why could be happening and what you can do.

#1: The thermostat is not set at the right temperature.
When you turn on your air conditioner, check your thermostat. Make sure that the fan is set on the ‘auto’ function. This saves money in the long run. That’s because the fan will only run when the air conditioner is cooling the air. If the fan runs non-stop at the ‘on’ position, it will run all day and night. That increases your energy usage and keeps your utility bill high.

#2: The AC filters are clogged.
Do you remember the last time you cleaned or replaced your air conditioner air filters? These filters are a critical part in the overall system functionality. If it has been more than two months, chances are, the filters will have dirt, debris, and other buildup in them. Air flow is restricted if that is the case, and cold air simply can’t get into your home as it should. As we enter in the warm summer months, be sure your air filters are replaced every other month.

#3: The vents are obstructed.
Look around your home and make sure that the return air vents are not blocked. It’s easy to inadvertently have drapes or furniture in front or on top of them. But, if that’s the case, the return intake of air will weaken how much air will come out of the supply vents. That means your home will not be efficiently cooled.

Summer is right around the corner and you will need to rely on your air conditioning system to keep you cool and comfortable. If your system is not working properly, don’t delay in getting it looked at. Our team of experienced professionals at Specialty Heating and Cooling will get it up and running at peak efficiency. We can diagnose the issue and get it fixed so you can be on your way. Contact us today for a repair appointment or to discuss getting a new air conditioning system installed in time for summer weather.

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!