Air Conditioning

Air Conditioning

Let AC Today take care of your Air Conditioning needs. Our professional technicians are highly trained to perform any Air Conditioning job that is needed. Call us today for a free estimate or second opinion. We will review any quotes you may have from another company and provide you with an honest quote.. More »

AC Todays Bradenton Location

AC Todays Bradenton Location

From residential customers to corporate companies, AC Today has provided services in Bradenton for several years now. Our technicians work hard to ensure that air conditioners all around the Bradenton area are functioning properly. Dont forget to schedule your maintenance check with us today. More »

24/7 Air Conditioning Services

24/7 Air Conditioning Services

We provide 24/7 Air Conditioning services for those unexpected times of emergency. No matter the time of day, our technicians are always available for your air conditioning needs. We dont want your family to suffer through the night with no cool air or heat. So call us right away for fast service. More »

Commercial Air Conditioning

Commercial Air Conditioning

Our certified technicians provide commercial air conditioning services for your business. From rooftop installations to commercial maintenance services, you are in good hands with AC Today. Call us today to schedule an appointment for your routine maintenance inspection. More »

 

Category Archives: AC Repair

Why We Recommend Hiring An HVAC Professional

Why We Recommend Hiring An HVAC Professional

When companies provide you with lower than normal prices, it may not always be a benefit to you. Hiring an experienced technician is the key. At AC Today, our technicians have the proper experience and training needed to complete any type of air conditioning job request. Your HVAC system is very important to your house and to us.

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By hiring a professional company, you are ensuring the job at hand will be completed in a timely and professional manner. Being an air conditioning technician can be tricky work at times, that's why, do it yourself projects are not recommended. A certified HVAC technician knows how to handle every situation that may occur.

There is an importance that comes with an expert opinion. Whether your HVAC system needs to be replaced or repaired, it should give you a peace of mind, knowing the diagnosis came from a professional company. AC Today believes in getting the job done right, the first time. Since there are many components in your system, any number of potential issues could arise. Handling hazardous materials and electrical components should not be taken lightly. These substances and mechanisms should not be in the hands of a unqualified person.

People To Not Have Fix Your HVAC System

Phone Contractors
When you suspect an issue with your HVAC system, we recommend you call a professional air conditioning company. After you explain your suspicious issue, that company should not respond with a price. Instead, schedule an appointment. Many air conditioning companies try to quess at a diagnosis or quote a price over the phone. An honest company would schedule a free estimate to inspect your system, only then would they discuss pricing and payment options. Never would we give you a firm quote without looking at your HVAC system prior. This is a red flag and should be cautioned, if this were to happen to you. Remember, if it is too good to be true, it probably is.

Your Next Door Neighbor
As knowledgeable as your neighbor may seem, your "handy" neighbor is not who to call when your a/c system is on the fritz, your HVAC system requires someone who is licensed and experienced. There are special tools to be used when doing certain repair jobs. We recommend leaving it for a professional company. Someone who is not certified may cause more damage or unknowingly cause the issues to escalate, if not handled properly. A friendly neighbor offer is always a nice gesture, however, if they are not specialized in this field, refer to your air conditioning company for assistance.

Upselling Contractors
No matter what the business is providing, there are always salesman who will try to upsell you on an item, that you may or may not need. For example, someone arrives at your home to inspect your HVAC system, they may have even cold called you and said they "have a man in the area". He then tells you that you need a brand new, super expensive system for your house, without even thoroughly inspecting the existing one. An honest company will do everything they can to repair or replace the damaged items on the system, before they try to sell you a new one. Trust in a professional technician that inspects every area of your home and every component of your HVAC system. Only then, should the discussion of replacement parts be the next topic.

Start-up Companies
When you hear of a new air conditioning company opening their doors with grand specials, you may want to hold off temporarily. Being a brand new company, whether in a new location or simply being brand new, has its pros and cons. It may seem nice to have the availability for instant service on your HVAC system, they may even be in a convenient location for you. However, an untested contractor may not be the best to try out when you are having a significant issue. Take caution and research the company name. You can find personal recommendations regarding their services or even read the company reviews online. AC Today believes you and your system should be in good hands with a well established company.

DIY Projects
Being a homeowner comes with projects and tasks to fix up things around the house. No matter the size, certain projects should be left to the professionals. You could watch several videos or read books about the project. However, you still may not be as qualified or experienced enough to handle the situation properly. That is why we recommend you call your HVAC company. There are many things a homeowner can do that is acceptable to fix, repair and replace. Your air conditioning system has many components and parts that could cause more harm than help. This is not only to you, but your system as well. Risking your personal protection in not worth saving a few dollars in the long run.

Finding a professional company is not difficult, when you have the proper tools. If you are not established with a company, here are a few tips we can recommend for you. Try researching the company. Get to know them better. Read the reviews that customers have left regarding their experience with the company. You can then form a personal opinion and decide if this company is right for you. It is always good to ask around. Talk with your friends and neighbors to see which company they use for their HVAC system. You may get a reference to a reputable company in your area. And last but not least, never leave a question unanswered. It is important to understand what is happening inside your home. Your HVAC contractor should fully explain or provide details as to what he is inspecting, looking for and his complete findings. If you are unsure, feel free to request a second opinion from another company.

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What License or Certification Should My HVAC Contractor Have?

What License or Certification Should My HVAC Contractor Have?

You may have heard the terms licensed and insured, many times before. But are you aware of the true meaning behind it? Television commercials, newspaper ads, and advertising on company work vans all quote those famous words. Knowing the difference between each of them will help you understand the importance of hiring a professional air conditioning company to provide you with services. Making educated decisions are better than making educated guesses.

What Does Licensed Mean?
In the state of Florida, both residential, commercial contractor and building contractors are required to be licensed. You can verify their credentials by visiting the Florida license website. (sunbiz.org) When researching a company you are interested in hiring for services, this should be your first inquiry. There are also separate licensing for basic residential contractors, general contractors, mechanical contractors such as electrical, plumbing and HVAC. Each certification must be properly maintained and up to date. The technician is required to complete credits throughout the year for continuing requirements.

Another important factor of having a licensed HVAC contractor in your home is reliability. When you hire a licensed HVAC contractor, you should be receiving excellent quality services. That is because his license is on the line. When you hire an unlicensed HVAC contractor, you are taking on full responsibility for fault in whatever may happen. In fact, you could even be penalized by your state for not hiring a licensed HVAC contractor. You could be subject to fines, proper permit regulations, loss of mortgage lender, and property damage. Do your research and investigate the company. If the air conditioning company is truly certified, they would have no problem disclosing this information to you as well as having the proper information posted in their office.

What Does Insured Mean?
A Company carrying liabilty insurance is basically the same as you having health insurance. If you are insured, your insurance pays for coverage. If not, you are responsible for all charges. Worker's Compensation is a type of coverage that protects the homeowner from total liability for injuries that have taken place on the property. If the air conditioning company is not insured, you or your homeowners insurance will be responsible for coverage of medical costs and lost wages. This is extremely important and a little nerve wrecking. You would not want to be held responsible for critical issues like that. General liability is what protects the homeowner from any type of damage to the property or if a bystander is injured on said property. Workers Compensation will cover any technician/worker if injured on your property, even if the HVAC contractor broke a bone, had permanent injuries or even death, the companies' insurance liability would cover all expenses. There are also exclusions within certain homeowner policies that exclude coverage for damages caused by negligence of a contractor.

Asking for license information for your HVAC contractor is the only way you will know if they are truly certified. Reputable companies will have no problem disclosing this information with you. When there is nothing to hide with a company, their professionalism will always shine through.

What does it mean to be NATE certified?
NATE stands for North American Technician Excellence. This is the highest certification a technician can have working for this type of trade. A NATE certification shows consumers that you as the technician, hold the highest ranking license. It is not an easy task to become NATE certified. A Florida technician must pass a core exam, which references topics such as installation and services, tools and safety, basic electrical principles, basic construction and senior technicians specialty paths. All topics are randomly chosen by the board members of NATE. This is to ensure that every technician who takes the exam is questioned about every aspect of Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVAC/R). Along with passing the exam, the technician must also specify a specialty to work in. This includes: gas heating installations and services, air conditioning installations and services, oil heating installations and services as well as air distribution services and installations. While not every air conditioning technician is required to be NATE certified, it is an extremely important factor when hiring an air conditioning company for professional services.

When it comes to the quality in services, every customer is looking for the best person for the job. Being NATE certified is defining the technician as "the best". According to the NATE industry survey, about 90% of consumers request to have a NATE certified technician to provide services in their home. This survey continues to encourage local air conditioning companies to have their employees properly certified.

Why Hire An HVAC Contractor?
There are many explanations we could provide you, however, we will go over the basic reasons as to why you should hire a certified HVAC contractor. Even though there may be minor jobs here and there that could be done by the homeowner, it's still a good idea to let a professional handle the job. Many people only look at the cost of maintenance checks and duct cleaning instead of the quality of services. What you're paying for is the high quality services performed by a licensed HVAC contractor. You can be guaranteed the services will be done properly the first time. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider hiring an HVAC contractor.

Certifications: The company you hire should have certified technicians employed.

Licensing and Insurance: The HVAC contractor should be licensed, according to the state requirements as well as carry the proper insurance.

Knowledge and Experience: You want to trust your HVAC contractor. Having the proper knowledge of installations, services, tools and equipment and many other areas.

Professionalism: When you hire a professional company, you would expect professional services. Respecting the property of a homeowner is important. Prevent damages by taking all precautionary measures.

From installations to standard maintenance checks, hiring an HVAC contractor is an important decision. Do your research about the company so you can make an educated decision instead of an educated guess.

Air Conditioning Financing

Air Conditioning Financing

In today's Economy we understand how stressful it is when your air conditioning system dies in the middle of summer, and you simply don't have the money to replace it. Need not worry; there are a number of financing options available for you. Even with less than perfect credit you could qualify for one of the following payment plans:

Special rate of 0% APR with payment in full in 12, 24, 36, 48 or 60 months *The Special Rate APR will apply to the purchase until the purchase is paid in full.

No interest option with regular payments for terms of 6, 9, 12, 15, 18 months *The interest accumulates during the promotional period. Interest is added into the customer account balance if the account is not paid in full during the promotional period. If the customer pays the balance in full before the promotional period expires, they don’t pay interest.

Regular term financing at an interest rate of up to 27.99%

It sure can make things a lot easier on the wallet when you can spread the payments out over 3 years. Say an average air conditioning system starts at about $5000.00; your payment would only be around $34.00/week or $138.00/ month. That’s certainly a lot easier to come up with than five thousand dollars all at once.

If financing is not an option for you, but you have some equity built up in your home, you may also want to consider a home equity loan/line of credit. The rates on these type of loans are always some of the lowest offered. Current rates are between % and %.

We appreciate the repeat business; however, it is just foolish to keep dumping money into that old, inefficient, a/c unit. If you experience a major* a/c failure after 7-10 years of service, you really should consider replacement. *a major failure would consist of: compressor failure, evaporator or condensing coil refrigerant leak or even a faulty fan or blower motor Not only will you not have to keep spending money on a lost cause, you will also benefit from lower utility bills with a new, more efficient, air conditioning system. Most reputable air conditioning company’s offer some sort of financing, please be sure to read over all financial documents before signing. In the event that you pressured into signing a financial document that you want to rescind, you have the right to cancel that agreement within 72 hours of signing, in the state of Florida. (Right of Rescission laws vary from state to state).

Air Conditioning

Air Conditioning

Air Conditioning AC Today Sarasota Now that we are in the dog days of summer, there are a few things to consider to get the most out of your air conditioning system. Here in the Sarasota-Bradenton area we are finding out that there are many things that can be done to allow your air conditioning system to run more efficiently and keep you more comfortable.

When thinking about air conditioning, one often only thinks about the mechanical device itself, but when you break down the meaning of air conditioning, it is simply the conditioning of air. One thing that drastically affects the “condition” of your air is insulation. There seems to be a mindset that insulation is more important in cooler climates to keep the cold out, on the contrary, insulation is just as effective in the summer to keep the heat out. As the temperature soars, the heat penetrating your home can be quite intense; insulation essentially acts as a barrier to prevent that heat from getting in. We have recorded attic temperatures of 130-145 degrees, in some Florida homes. Without proper attic insulation you are essentially allowing that heat to radiate into your home through the ceiling, adversely affecting the condition of your air.

The air filter is by far the easiest thing that any home owner can do to help keep cooling costs down. Keeping a clean air filter, in your air conditioner, can reduce your energy usage by up to 15 percent. We recommend running a pleated type filter, as they provide adequate filtration without restricting airflow. Beware of the washable type filters; they tend to restrict airflow even with small amount of dirt on them.

It may seem strange, but something as simple as window treatments can also aid in the effectiveness of your air conditioning. An easy way to prevent heat gain in your home is to add blinds, drapes, awnings or some sort of window film. On hot days closed blinds or drapes can reduce heat gain by up to 45%. Blinds and drapes are most effective when they are made of lighter shade materials. Fixed or retractable awnings can be installed, which can reduce heat gain by between 65 and 75 percent. Window films or tint are available in a variety of beneficial shades and materials. 3M makes window film that can reject up to 71% of the heat coming through your windows.

Your air conditioning costs can be greatly reduced and your overall comfort can be increased by considering one or more of the above options.

Benefits of Routine Air Conditioner Maintenance

Benefits of Routine Air Conditioner Maintenance

Routine air conditioning maintenance has several benefits to you and your air conditioner. Some of these benefits are lower utility/energy bills, extended equipment life, untimely/unnecessary equipment failure and better indoor air quality. The old saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” couldn’t be any more accurate when referring to an a/c system.

One of the most commonly asked questions, concerning maintenance, is “how often should I have my a/c system checked.” All manufactures of air conditioning equipment require one routine maintenance/tune-up per year, to uphold any manufacture warranty. For most geographic locations a single maintenance is usually enough, unless you live in a hotter area of the country. If you live in a warmer climate, two maintenances (one in the spring and one in the fall) are recommended. Here in Florida we tend to use/abuse our a/c systems for much longer periods of time, some folks run there a/c systems all year round. Very similar to your vehicle needing routine oil changes, you’re a/c system needs routine maintenance to keep it running properly.

Hundreds of components are used to make an air conditioning system, but it only takes neglect of a few of these parts to make a system run poorly. The filters cleanliness, or lack thereof, is the simplest of things that needs to be maintained. Running a unit with a dirty filter, increases energy consumption and decreases your indoor air quality not to mention your comfort. Checking/Changing your filter is something you can do yourself and will be the first thing a good technician checks on a tune-up.

A clogged condensate drain line is another very simple thing, if neglected, can make your system stop running all together. Most drain lines are equipped with a float switch that will turn the entire unit off if the drain line becomes clogged. Flushing the drain line is always included in any routine maintenance call. **Helpful hint** flush your drain line with a cup of vinegar between maintenances; this will help reduce algae in the line and prevent clogs.

Air Conditioner Maintenance The Evaporator coil or cooling coil is an essential part of your system to keep clean. Even a small amount of dirt on your coil will reduce the effective cooling and efficiency of your unit, not to mention, contaminates the air inside your home. Say your coil is 25-50% clogged, this will put more strain on the compressor and may cause it to fail prematurely. Think of the compressor as the heart of an a/c system, you want to protect it, just like you would protect your own heart. (average compressor replacement costs between $1500-$2500)

Much like a dirty evaporator coil, a dirty condensing coil (the coil around the outside/condensing unit) will also make the compressor work harder, cost you more money and potentially fail, without proper maintenance.

Small parts, such as Contractors, Capacitors, hard start kits and circuit boards all need to be checked regularly. Contractors are essentially a switch that turns the condensing unit on or off. Contractors have contact points that can wear and prevent the proper amount of power to be delivered to the unit, potentially causing damage to any other component connected to it. Capacitors are passive two-terminal electrical components used to store energy in an electric field. (Kind of like a battery, without the long term storage capacity) Capacitors are one of the most common parts to weaken or fail in an a/c system. A weak capacitor can be detrimental to the motor/compressor that it is connected to. If a weak capacitor is detected during maintenance, it most definitely should be replaced. -Hard start kits are devices that give the compressor a boost of power on start up to help prevent internal compressor damage. These can also be tested to verify that they are giving the compressor the power it needs to operate. -Circuit boards control the sequence of operations of all the components. Circuit boards are very sensitive to moisture and can corrode to point of failure, in a very short time.

Most of the parts that are checked on a routine maintenance are pretty inexpensive, but if it goes unnoticed that one has weakened or failed it can cost you thousands! On average a routine maintenance/tune-up should cost between $49-$129, this is a small price to pay to have peace of mind that your system will keep you cool and comfortable, without breaking the bank.

AC Scare Tactics

AC Scare Tactics

AC Scare Tactics

Numerous news reports these days have depicted your neighbourhood air conditioning business as being dishonest crooks. As this really is true for a particular percentage of companies, not all of us are out to getting over you! The A/C Today team has made it our mission to let consumers recognize that not all A/C companies are dishonest. We now have compiled a few statements that we've heard other companies use to try and scare clients right into a buying goods and services they don’t even need.

“I've found a quantity of mold inside your air handler, this could kill you. Really, the only way to remove it would be to replace you’re a/c system.” Mold/mildew is well known to cold in warm moist environments, like the inside cabinet of the air conditioning system. However, you do not have to replace the complete system to remove it. All the components within the air handling unit may be cleaned and sanitized. There are many antimicrobial solutions available to remove mold and mildew from the inside areas of an air conditioning system. This is just a scare tactic to scare you into purchasing new systems.

This statement is frequently presented whenever a technician is out for routine maintenance. “Your system remains to be running but I don’t see it lasting for just several weeks, it’s on its last leg”. There are several indications a system is getting tired. These such as high amp draw, low refrigerant charge, low temperature differential. However, there is no such thing as a time clock telling the technician when it's going to quit. Request specifics from your technician. Have them demonstrate first hand what the issues are that made him/her come to the current conclusion. If they can not demonstrate and explain the issue in laymen’s terms, odds are they're just attempting to sell you a bill of goods. This is another way of a scare tactic.

The following is a reasonably common scare tactics. This is frequently done whenever a technician is out for just a tune-up. We now have discovered this when out on several 2nd opinions for clients. What happens is that the technician will come inside and obtain the homeowner to point out to them a “problem”. The tech will have the blower door off on the air handling device and demonstrate to the homeowner of the fact that copper refrigerant pipes are frosting/freezing up. Usually after doing this, they are going to say how the unit is low on Freon. Trying to clarify that the unit has a Freon leak and will need to be replaced. This trick is pretty believable. Especially because they physically showed you the frozen pipes. How it really works, is that when the blower door is off of the unit there is certainly not enough air going through the coil, dropping the coil temperature below the freezing point. Therefore, freezing up the refrigerant pipes. The Refrigerant level will register low and show frost on the refrigerant piping. All while any door or panel is removed from the system. Remember to verify that every one of the doors are securely attached on the air handling unit when the technician is testing it. All these scare tactic are simply scams. Educate yourself on your AC unit so you can point out the technicians that are trying their scare tactic on you.

Unfortunately, many companies are sending out crooked salesmen instead of technicians to complete the routine maintenance and upkeep on your air conditioning system. This is a disservice to you and you’re A/C system. As a result of insufficient experience the salesperson has verses a real technician. A salesman is merely concerned about your wallet. However, our technicians concern is to make your A/C system run and function efficiently. A/C Today sends technicians to your property, not salesmen! Don't buy into their scare tactic.

Written By: Daniel Kinnetz

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