In a desert town like Yucaipa, air conditioning systems are the only thing standing between us and triple-digit temperatures. A sturdy AC unit can last for a long time, but sooner or later, every air conditioning unit needs to be replaced. When AC shopping in Yucaipa, you want to make sure you get the right unit to fit your needs. Here are 3 features to look out for when determining the best air conditioner for you.
Energy Efficiency. AC units all have a SEER (Season Energy Effectiveness Ratio) rating, determining how efficiently they cool your home. Modern AC units feature SEER ratings of 13 or above. Older ones can drop as low as 6. The higher the rating, the more it will save you on your monthly bills.
Heat pumps are an ideal comfort system for the climate of Southern California, since they combine a powerful air conditioning system with an energy-efficient heating system that can always overcome our mild winters.
Well… perhaps not always. A heat pump can malfunction and lose one or both of its modes. If you have turned your heat pump over to heating mode to deal with the arrival of cooler weather in Southern California, but you aren’t receiving warmth from it, than there is something wrong that will probably require a professional to fix. Check to see first if the thermostat is correctly set, and if it is, call on heat pump repair experts to look into what is wrong. Below are the two most common possibilities:
Broken reversing valve
The mostly likely cause for a heat pump to become stuck in one mode or another is a malfunction in the reversing valve.… Read more
You may live in one of the many homes in Southern California that uses a ductless system for its air conditioning as well as its heating. These ductless mini splits are an excellent way to provide comfort without the need for space-eating ducts that collect dust and often lose air through leaks.
But ductless air conditioning systems can run into problems as well. If you notice that one of the indoor units—the air handlers—is sagging on the wall or looks like its crooked, you might imagine something’s wrong. And you’re probably correct.
Why this is may be happening
One possibility is a poor installation job. Did you try to install the system yourself, or allow an amateur to do it? If so, the air handler was probably mounted incorrectly so it wasn’t secured to the wall.… Read more
f you’ve stopped by our blog regularly to find out more about the services we offer or to learn about how your heating, air conditioning, and ventilation systems work, you are not alone! Russell’s Heating & Air Conditioning is listed as one of the Top 100 HVAC Blogs and Websites for HVAC Contractors and Homeowners. And we didn’t just barely scrape onto the list—we’re ranked at #35! Feedspot bases their list on Google rankings, influence and popularity on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the quality and consistency of the posts, and Feedspot’s own editorial team review and expert opinion. We’ve been doing something right!
But honestly, we’re not surprised with our high ranking. We have years of experience helping homes and businesses with our skill and our dedication to the best in customer service.… Read more
Here in San Bernardino, CA, air conditioning repair services are as important as your auto mechanic. Temperatures often reach triple digits here in the Inland Empire, and without a reliable air conditioner, you’re liable to melt right onto the floor! People are used to paying a lot in monthly bills for good air conditioner service, but that sometimes mean paying more than is necessary.
Here Are 3 Causes of Higher Air Conditioning Costs That You Should Keep an Eye Out For
Lack of Maintenance. Dirt and dust build up on your air conditioner over time, and various components can become loose or worn as they operate. As a result, your air conditioner will work harder to do the same job and cost you more money.
Before you turn your air conditioning system on for the first time this summer there are a few things that you should consider doing for your AC. The Palm Springs, CA air conditioning professionals at Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning can help you with any services that you might need.
Benefits of Air Conditioning Maintenance in Palm Springs, CA
During the winter you likely leave your air conditioning system unattended. Before you go running all the time in the summer you may want to consider calling the Palm Springs, CA air conditioning pros at Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning today. We can visit your home and perform a full diagnostic inspection and tune-up on your system. Our experts will thoroughly inspect every component of your air conditioning system and look for any issues that could have developed over the winter.… Read more
We may not experience major seasonal swings here in the warmth of Southern California, but that doesn’t mean we miss out on seasons all together. One season that we experience like the rest of the country is “allergy season.” Because of our climate, our allergy season can start as early as February!
There are ways you can get yourself ready for allergy season, aside from taking medication. One of the best ways is to improve your home’s air quality systems to get rid of the pollen and other pollutants that create runny noses, wheezing, sneezing, and the other general ickiness that comes along with this time of the year. With the help of indoor air quality professionals, you can enjoy a much healthier first half of the year.… Read more
Here in Palm Springs, CA we run our air conditioning systems a lot throughout the year. All that use can cause your air conditioning system to develop a number of common issues. If you’re having any problems with your AC system just call the Palm Springs, CA air conditioning repair professionals at Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning. We have years of experience working on all different kinds of air conditioners. We wanted to share with you some of the most common repairs that we get called for so that you can recognize them.
Palm Springs, CA Air Conditioning Repair Services
If you’re like most homeowners here in the desert then you likely run your air conditioning system almost every single day to stay comfortable.… Read more
Allergies can be a problem around the year in a place like Southern California. Although there are many medical ways to treat mild to severe allergy problems, one of the best ways to meet the problem is to improve your home’s air quality. Because modern houses don’t allow much fresh air to circulate through them, it’s easy for many allergens to become trapped indoors and continue to move through the HVAC system and rooms.
But how do you boost your air quality, aside from throwing open the windows and doors and letting in the immense outdoor heat? It’s actually simple: you only have to get in contact with our IAQ experts. They’ll find the right service or installation to reduce the allergen count in your home.… Read more
Poor indoor air quality is a common problem for both homes and residential buildings. But it’s also poorly understood. People often don’t realize they have air quality issues until they develop serious symptoms related to whatever is floating around in their air.
Below we’ve put together a list of four things you may not have realized about your home’s indoor air quality. The purpose isn’t to alarm you—although a few of these facts may be unsettling—but to get you to take action to solve the problems before they worsen. Issues with indoor air quality in Palm Springs, CA can be solved with the assistance of IAQ professionals who work with air filters, air purifiers, duct sealing, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, duct cleaning, and more.… Read more
If your air conditioning unit needs replacing for whatever reason, it pays to consider alternatives to traditional units that might serve you better. Heat pumps, for example, have a number of versatile qualities that give them advantages over traditional AC. Far from being restricted to heating, heat pumps combine both heating and coolinginto one extremely efficient unit. This efficiency becomes especially valuable during the hot summer months, where air conditioning is in almost constant demand.
Read on for some of the most desirable benefits of using a heat pump for cooling.
The first thing that sets heat pumps apart from more traditional air conditioning systems is their efficiency. By utilizing the surrounding environment in different ways, the heat pump can accomplish the same level of cooling that normal air conditioners can without having to work as hard.… Read more
Dry air inside our homes can be a common problem in Yucaipa, CA, both during the long warm season and the shorter cool season. When your home suffers from low humidity, the best solution is to contact an indoor air quality professional and arrange for the installation of a whole-house humidifier to balance the humidity levels. Portable humidifiers are a good choice if you only need to increase the humidity in a single room, like an infant’s, but they are ineffective when it comes to the rest of the house. With the help of a professional, you can have the humidity raised to pleasant and healthy levels without the danger of making the home too humid (and initiating a whole new set of problems.)… Read more
This is a question that we sometime hear from our clients: “Why am I finding cold and hot spots around my house?” This is a result of uneven heating and cooling, and there are a number of different reasons for it to occur. We’ll look at some of the more common as well as what you can do to restore the even comfort in your household.
Hot and Cold Spots—Why It Happens
The simplest reason is because of heat escaping or entering a room through a window or other air leak. Check to make sure windows in the hot/cold areas are secure and there are no draughts entering.
Problems with the ventilation system are one of the most common reasons for uneven temperatures around a house.
Winter preparation tends to be a somewhat… mellow… affair here in the deserts of Southern California. Yes, we can expect a bit of rain, and some nights when it gets cool enough to turn on the heater for a stretch. Hey, we can even enjoy a nice fire in the fireplace! But it is nothing like Minnesota or many other parts of North America.
So, with less of the really hard work of winter preparation to take care of, there are some tasks that may not have occurred to you that are great to schedule at this time: professional duct cleaning is one of them.
Air Duct Cleaning Frequency
Cleaning the air ducts in a home has often gotten a bit of a bad rap because disreputable door-to-door offers that are really nothing more than at too-expensive fast vacuuming job.… Read more
Here’s a problem that we’ve seen in Southern Californian homes before: a furnace starts to fail to do its job, producing inferior heat, struggling to start up, or shutting off too early. And yet the homeowners don’t do anything to replace it because they imagine they can bundle up a bit and wait until the warm weather starts again.
But, if your home has an old furnace that’s no longer able to do its job, you have to have it replaced. Leaving it there not only means discomfort, but also a spike in costs to run it and the possibility of safety hazards (if it’s a gas furnace, which are the most common type). Upgrading to a higher efficiency furnace will give you many years of worry-free comfort, and the energy savings will help it begin paying for itself the moment it turns on for the first time.… Read more
There’s nothing quite like the feeling of stepping into a properly air conditioned room and cooling down after a long day. The Irvine summers can certainly get hot, and as much as we enjoy the sunshine, we also recognize the importance of an excellent air conditioning system, such as central air or a ductless mini split. But temperature isn’t everything. Much of the comfort level in your home depends as much on the humidity and quality of the indoor air as it does on the temperature you read on the thermostat. For this reason, it’s critical that you take your indoor air quality as well as your air conditioning into account during the cooling season in order to optimize the comfort of your living space.… Read more
If you like to take care of various repairs and home improvements around your home as DIY projects, you should certainly be commended. However, you need to know that there are some jobs that you should never undertake on your own. One of these is repairing your central air conditioning system.
But what’s wrong with a little DIY on an AC?
The modern air conditioner is an extremely complicated refrigeration device, similar to an actual refrigerator. Just as you won’t be able to repair a refrigerator unless you have training, you can’t repair a malfunctioning air conditioner without the proper skills and professional equipment.
There are many things about air conditioners that make them difficult-to-impossible for amateurs to repair. But there’s one specific aspect of AC repair that we would like to focus on, which is diagnosis.… Read more
One of the most important services we provide for homeowners in the Inland Empire and Desert Communities is installing air filters and air purifiers that improve air quality. Most homes can benefit from some type of filtration or purification system, and our experts are skilled at finding the right type of filter/purifier to deal with the pollutants circulating through the HVAC system and the rooms of your house.
A type air purifiers that we often install is the APCO Air Scrubber. The APCO (Advanced Photocatalytic Oxidation) system is integrated into the air ducts of a home, where it uses a combination of UV light and activated carbon to clean air of germs, viruses, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) like formaldehyde.
The benefits of an APCO Air Scrubber
The Air Scrubber isn’t the ideal match for all homes, which is why you should always consult with a professional regarding your different options.… Read more
End-of-summer repairs are common, and you shouldn’t wait to make them. Problems with your AC rarely get better on their own, and they usually become worse over time. If it’s time for air conditioning repair in Palm Desert, call the people you can count on: Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning.
There are a lot of ways your air conditioner can malfunction, but there are a few problems we see a lot after a busy cooling season:
Refrigerant leaks – the refrigerant in your system helps facilitate the transfer of heat. Your air conditioner requires an exact amount of refrigerant in order to work properly. When there’s a leak, it causes an imbalance in the heat release/cooling process. Refrigerant leaks require immediate repair and can be hard to find, so it’s important to call a professional.
A large number of misconceptions and myths swirl around residential air conditioning systems. (For example, “Air conditioners use up refrigerant as they work.” Not at all true: air conditioners circulate refrigerant, which does not dissipate during the process.) We are going to deal with one of the most unfortunate of these AC misconceptions, which leads to many air conditioners failing years before they should and costing their owners large amounts in replacement fees. The misunderstanding is that air conditioning systems can continue to work fine for years without requiring professional maintenance.
Just like a car, air conditioner must have routine maintenance
An air conditioner is a mechanical system, and any mechanical system will wear down over time because of stress. There is simply no way to avoid this—but it can be alleviated.… Read more
We often encourage our customers to consider the installation of a high efficiency air conditioning system in Palm Desert, CA and the surrounding areas. In the extreme hot weather we experience in the Southern California deserts, this type of AC can make a big difference in cooling bills. We’ve previously written about SEER and EER, which are important measures of the efficiency of an air conditioning system. However, there’s another energy efficiency rating to discuss, COP, which stands for Coefficient of Performance.
What COP Means
Coefficient of performance is used in a number of applications, but it’s usually applied to air conditioners and heat pumps. It’s a ratio of work or useful output to the amount of work or energy input.… Read more
During the blistering hot summers in the desert towns of Southern California, there’s nothing worse than an air conditioning system that simply cannot deal with the heat. It takes a powerful and well-maintained AC to beat back intense summer temperatures that often rise above 100°F, and if your home’s air conditioner starts to fall down on the job, you’ll probably need to call on HVAC professionals to diagnose the problem and fix it.
Some Reasons Your AC May Be Struggling with the Heat
Excess age: If an air conditioning system receives annual maintenance (usually in the spring) it should be able to last 10 to 15 years, sometimes more. But it will eventually start to wear down, no matter how much attention it receives, and start to lose its cooling ability.
Many homeowners enjoy taking on small fix-it and improvement jobs on their own. It’s not only a way to save money, it can be an exciting adventure on its own and the feeling of accomplishment that comes after it is its own reward.
But not every job in a home can be done as a DIY project. Most work for a central air conditioner should be left to professionals only. In fact, aside from some basic maintenance work such as replacing the air filter regularly and some adjustments to the thermostat, air conditioning tasks are something only trained technicians can do right. Let’s look at a few.
Diagnosing a short-cycling air conditioner
Short-cycling is a common type of malfunction for a central cooling system (as well as a heat pump).… Read more
Insulation is a word that has a different meaning for people who live in warm climates—like here in Southern California—than it does for people in colder places. For homeowners who are used to chilly winters, insulation is what they have in the walls and attics of their houses to keep heat stored inside and stop chilly drafts. Where we live, insulation is something that keeps out the heat.
There’s another use for insulation in a home, however, that is beneficial anywhere: duct insulation. It’s important that the air ducts that carry both heated and cooled air around your home have sufficient insulation in the right spots. Here’s why:
Lowers energy bills: The air moving through ducts can either lose or gain heat, and this makes the HVAC system far less efficient.
The days are beginning to warm up, and before long we’ll be in the middle of the hottest time of the year. That means it’s time to start getting your air conditioner prepped for the added stress of keeping you cool all summer long. Part of those preparations, however, include evaluating whether your air conditioner can even make it through another summer. If not, you’ll need to have it replaced with a new one. How can you tell if you need a new air conditioner? Read on to find out.
The easiest way to evaluate whether or not you need a new air conditioner is to look at the age of your current one. Most air conditioners are built to last around 15–20 years, with regular repairs and maintenance.… Read more
There are many ways that an air conditioner or heater can start to malfunction and end up costing you more money to run that it should. But sometimes these problems aren’t malfunctions; they’re built right into the HVAC system itself from the beginning. Not all installations are equal, and a shoddy initial job can mean a heating and cooling system that won’t live up to its potential.
One common error with HVAC installation is thermostats that are poorly located. We’ll take a close look at the trouble this can cause.
Why is the thermostat’s location important?
A thermostat is both a control mechanism that allows people to change the settings for a heating and cooling system, and a temperature sensor. Today’s thermostats have more precise sensors in them than ever before, replacing older mercury sensors.… Read more
Getting a new air conditioning system installed in your home is a huge decision and one that you will have to live with for many years. You rely on your air conditioning system a lot—especially during the summer when it gets really hot here in the desert. One of the best things that you can do for the performance, consistency and efficiency of your AC system is to get it installed by a professional Palm Springs air conditioning technician. Here at Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning, we offer a full range of air conditioning installation services and we wanted to share some of the benefits to getting your air conditioner installed by a pro. Give us a call if you have any questions or if you’re interested in getting help with your new air conditioning system.… Read more
When your old air conditioner gives up the ghost, you’re usually best off replacing it with a brand new one, rather than trying to cut corners by purchasing a used model. New air conditioners are more efficient than older ones and often offer numerous upgrades that can make your life more comfortable. Here in San Bernardino, air conditioning replacement is a serious matter: our triple-digit temperatures don’t leave any room for error when making your plans.
Here Are A Few Upgrades to Consider When Replacing Your Air Conditioner
A very easy and reliable upgrade is the addition of a new thermostat. If you’re using an older mercury-based system you should immediately upgrade it with a digital thermostat: they’re safer and more reliable while offering a number of extra features.… Read more
Commercial HVAC systems are designed for much higher use than residential HVAC systems, and as such must adopt slightly different qualities. In practice, however, the qualities are more a matter of sizing than technique. Commercial cooling towers are bigger, sturdier and built to handle higher loads than cooling towers in residential systems. In Redlands, CA heating installation services can provide more specific guidelines on cooling towers. But in general terms, how do cooling towers work in a commercial HVAC system?
Cooling towers work on the condenser coils, which can get very hot when the system goes through its cycle and cause problems with the air conditioning process. The tower moves cold water through the heated coils, and then into a heat exchanger, which pulls the heat out of the water and sends it back over the coils to continue the process.… Read more
Your ductwork is one of the unsung heroes of your home, allowing your central forced-air heating and cooling systems to keep your home comfortable year-round while simultaneously staying out of sight. While it’s a great thing that your ducts are so unobtrusive while playing so vital role, it also makes it hard for them to receive repairs when they need them. Many homeowners can’t tell what kind of condition their ducts are in, and thus can’t tell when they are in need of repairs. This contributes to one of the biggest problems that ducts are afflicted with: duct leaks. Let’s take a look at why you should have your ducts inspected and sealed, and how that can help keep you cool this summer.… Read more
As we head into the warm temperatures of summer in San Bernardino, you may notice more water heading into the drain pipe of your air conditioner; this is normal, considering the higher rate of operation your air conditioner is experiencing. But leaking water from other parts of your air conditioner, including the condensate tray, is not part of normal operation and will need repair. Water leaks can do a great deal of damage to your home, so don’t let a water leak make your air conditioning repair larger than it has to be – call Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning immediately.
Reasons Why Water Can Leak from Your Air Conditioner
Your air conditioner is a closed system, so if water is doing something other than draining from the condensate tray into the drain pipe, there is most likely an issue.… Read more
If you use an older natural gas furnace to provide heat for your house, it probably has a standing pilot light to ignite the burners whenever the system turns on. When the furnace is working as it should, the pilot light will remain burning steadily throughout the season.
But a common problem that people with furnaces run into is a pilot light that keeps going out. An unlit pilot light means that the burners can’t come on and the furnace won’t work. (A device called a thermocouple is designed to recognize when the pilot light fails and then shut off the burner as a safety precaution.)
Our customers often call us because of a pilot light they can’t keep lit. Below are some of the reasons this might happen:
Faulty thermocouple – The thermocouple detects when the pilot light is on, and sends an electric current to the gas line to keep a valve open.
This is the time of year when we remind homeowners in Southern California to prep for the coming heat (you know how intense the heat gets here in the desert!) by arranging for a regular maintenance visit from an HVAC professional. We offer superb air conditioning maintenance in Cathedral City, CA and the surrounding areas, so all you have to do is contact our office and we’ll be out to inspect and tune-up your home cooling system.
But I have a heat pump, and it was maintained in the fall
This is a common misunderstanding we run into, which is that heat pumps—systems that work as both air conditioners and heaters—only need maintenance service done once a year. Superficially, this makes some sense.… Read more
Every year in the spring, you must arrange for a maintenance visit for your air conditioning system from an HVAC professional. This will prepare for the rigors of another hot Southern California summer. But there is an important maintenance task that you will need to perform yourself each month during the summer: changing (or cleaning) the AC’s air filter.
Why do I need to do this?
The air filter protects the interior of the air conditioning cabinet from debris that enters through the return air ducts. As the filter traps dust, dander, and other particles, it will start to become congested. After a month of steady work (the sort you can expect during a California summer) the filter will be fully clogged.… Read more
There was a time when choosing a central air conditioning system for a home was straightforward, since there was little in the way of variety available. Professionals still needed to size the unit for the home and then take care of the actual installation work, but almost all ACs were split systems that used an outdoor condenser unit and an indoor evaporator and air handler connected to ductwork.
Today you have more choices when it comes to air conditioning. And with more choices comes some confusion. Which is the right unit for your home? Below are some of the air conditioning options available to you.
Standard split units: There’s nothing wrong installing a traditional central air conditioning system. If you have a home with an extensive duct network already in place, this is often the best of your choices.
In a post a few weeks ago, we discussed one of the biggest misconceptions that people have about air conditioning systems: that they will eventually run out of refrigerant. Your AC should retain the same charge of refrigerant for its entire service life, with no need to have professionals put in more.
But there is one exception: leaks along the refrigerant lines. When you notice signs that your air conditioner is losing refrigerant (frost along the evaporator coil, a drop in cooling power, a hissing sound from the cabinets) you need to call for repairs right away from HVAC professionals.
What causes these leaks to happen in the first place?
Well, it’s almost certainly nothing that you did wrong. Studies have shown that this problem stems from something called formicary corrosion, which is a type of corrosion that can affect the copper lines of an air conditioning system.… Read more
There’s an old saying about March: “In like a lamb, out like a lion.” (And sometimes the reverse!) The earliest reference to this is from a 1732 volume of “wise sayings,” which means the phrase has been around far longer than that. It’s a cute way to say that March offers some of the most unpredictable weather of the year, sometimes acting like December, and at other times acting like July.
However, here in the deserts of Southern California, our unpredictability is a bit more… predictable. Winters are mild (it was wonderful that we got some much-needed rain this year) and warmer weather arrives early. March is the best time to start getting your home ready to face the extreme heat of the middle of the year, because that extreme heat can come roaring in at any moment.… Read more
Natural gas is a common energy source used in homes and businesses around the country. If your home has a connection to a natural gas line, you probably use gas to power your oven, stove, water heater, and furnace.
Natural gas systems have a tendency to make people nervous. They’re concerned about toxic gas leaks, such as carbon monoxide, and combustion hazards. Most of these fears are exaggerated, but we do recommend people take caution when it comes to any natural gas appliance. We’re trained professionals in handling heating repair in La Quinta, CA and the surrounding areas, so we know a great deal about the safety level of gas furnaces—and how to keep them safe.
Let’s take a closer look at the safety of your home’s gas furnace.… Read more
We’re deep into spring, and the official start of summer is only three weeks away. If you haven’t already arranged for your spring air conditioning maintenance with our HVAC professionals, you might think that it’s too late. Maybe you can skip this year and have maintenance done next spring? What’s the worst that can happen?
Here’s the Worst That Can Happen…
Your air conditioner will break down on the hottest day of the year. That’s not something you want to happen, especially when you consider what hot is down in the deserts of Southern California. Although you can always reach our technicians for repair service—we’re here 24 hours a day to help—this is a situation you want to avoid if at all possible.… Read more
Your air conditioning and heating system comes standard with an air filter that helps to clean the air, keeping contaminants from recirculating through your ducts. But these weren’t originally designed with health in mind. Air filters serve another key purpose: protecting your HVAC equipment from damage. While all filters are effective enough to block large debris from the AC unit, not all filters can reduce some of the main allergens common to most homes. If your indoor air quality is at stake, you may consider an electronic air filter or a UV air purifier as a supplementary device.
Call Russell’s Heating and Air Conditioning to talk about your Yucaipa air filtration system’s effectiveness and to decide whether a new electronic unit can benefit your home.… Read more