Downtown Air and Heat Blog : Archive for February, 2014

Things to Consider Before Installing a New Heating System

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

If you are interested in having a new heating system installed in your home, now is an excellent time to schedule it. With winter already quickly receding in Florida and air conditioning is starting to hum once again, heating installers will have more open schedules. You also won’t have to worry about forgoing heat for a short time while the installers do their work swapping out your old heater for the new one.

New installation does require some planning, so here are a few things to consider before you start. For quality help when it comes to heating systems installation in Orlando, FL, contact Downtown Air & Heat and talk to one of our NATE-certified technicians today.

What you should consider before heating installation:

  • Your energy supply: How do you receive power for your home? Do you only use electricity, or do you have a natural gas line? Have you used stored heating oil before? Understanding the fuel sources available to you will guide you toward the heater that will fit best with your home. If you only have electricity, you’ll need to narrow your options to heat pumps and electric furnaces. With a natural gas line, you’ll have a choice of gas furnaces as well.
  • Your budget plans: There are two places to think about your budget when it comes to heating systems. First, the initial installation cost. Second, the long-term cost of operation. Some heaters have low installation prices, but cost more to run. High-efficiency systems, which can generate large long-term savings, often cost much more upfront. You will need to give some thought to where you wish to spend the money and how long you expect the heater to work for you.
  • Your home’s heat load: “Heat load” is the amount of heat (in tons) that your home requires in order for you to be comfortable. Determining the heat load requires calculating numerous factors—house size, number and position of windows, heat generated from appliances, how many people live there, etc.—and for this you should have your installers perform a careful heat load calculation. Knowing the heat load will not only help you pick the right heater, but it will help the installers size it to fit your home.

Make sure you use professional installers

When you are considering your budget, don’t plan to save money by going with amateur installers for the job (or even doing it yourself). This won’t actually save you money: it will result in years of repairs and poor performance, and it could even create safety hazards. Only deal with licensed and trained professional installers.

Contact Downtown Air & Heat and talk to our specialists with heating systems installation in Orlando, FL. We’ll do the job right!

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Why Should I Hire a Heating Systems Repair Specialist?

Monday, February 17th, 2014

If you’re a business owner, you’ll often rely on the maintenance crew from the building to take care of minor mishaps that can occur in your workspace, such as broken doorknobs, flickering fluorescent lights, and occasional problems in the vents. But when it comes to the heating system you have for your business, if it’s a heater that you own and pay for, it’s best to contact a professional HVAC company that handles commercial work to take care of it. A heating systems repair specialists can do the specific and targeted job to get the work done correctly and with little chance of it re-occurring.

If you’re looking for professional heating system repair in Orlando, FL for your company’s requirements, contact Downtown Air & Heat today. We think you’ll like our work so much that you’ll put us down as your regular heating repair specialists for all your needs.

What can a heating systems repair specialist do for my business?

The HVAC system in your business place is much more complicated than what you will find in a home. It requires more power to run and must work for a larger number of people. Keeping the system working at peak level is essential for the comfort of both your employees and customers, and to maintain a check on heating bills. The need for precision while working on a large system calls for a technician with extensive, expert training in commercial HAVC.

Most business use rooftop packaged units for heating and cooling; these machines require a level of advanced knowledge to service that is often beyond residential HVAC technicians, and certainly beyond the skill of standard maintenance crews. These systems also need a dedicated technician who can keep up maintenance on the unit and detect if it is developing problems that may lead to repairs, and to figure out when the unit will need replacement.

Heating systems repair specialists will also be considerate concerning your business and how important it is to keep it tidy. They work in protective covers to keep your workspace clean and will go out of their way to avoid disruptions to work flow.

Where can I find a good heating systems repair specialist?

Right here, at Downtown Air & Heat! We have the best of both worlds, since we handle residential and commercial HVAC work. We have specialists for the work you’ll need, and they can take care of your installation and replacement services, including heating and cooling systems up to 25 tons. We have a staff of NATE-certified technicians ready for your needs for heating systems repair in Orlando, FL.

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The Original Valentine’s Day Greeting Cards

Friday, February 14th, 2014

It’s hard to imagine Valentine’s Day without the traditional greeting cards, whether accompanying a gift of flowers and candy, or sent between children in a school room. For commercial greeting card companies, February 14th is as important to them as the December holidays, Easter, and Mother’s Day.

Valentine’s Day as a celebration of romantic love predates printed greeting cards by a few centuries. In fact, the reason that sending romantic greeting cards became popular was because of the most un-romantic thing you can imagine: a reduction in postage rates.

In 1765, Parliament authorized the creation of “Penny Posts” that used a uniform rate of one old penny per letter throughout Great Britain and Ireland. Printers took advantage of the ease with which people could send letters to each other on Valentine’s Day by crafting cards with love poems on them. Many of these verses were collected in 1797 in the book The Young Man’s Valentine Writer, which was a resource for the lover with a romantic soul but not the most confident poetry style.

By the mid-19th-century, the Valentine’s Day greeting card was flourishing across England. Although people still followed a tradition of creating handmade Valentine’s Day cards from lace, ribbons, and flowers, commercially produced cards now overtook them. In 1835, the English post office mailed 60,000 valentines. As production expenses dropped, the English card manufacturers branched out creatively with humorous and sometimes vulgar cards… many of which we would find startlingly familiar in the 21st century. One of the common jokes on these cards was to design them to look like marriage certificates or court summons.

Across the Atlantic, the United States was slower to embrace the popular British custom. It wasn’t until 1847 that a U.S. printer mass-produced greeting cards for Valentine’s Day. Only two years later, American journalists noted how rapidly people in the country had embraced the tradition, turning into a fad that has never died down. The woman who printed the first U.S. Valentine’s Day card, Esther Howland, is today recognized by the Greeting Card Association with the annual “Esther Howland Award for a Greeting Card Visionary.”

The greeting card industry certainly has reason to thank Ms. Howland. Her idea of going into business printing romantic greeting cards, which came to her after she received a traditional English valentine when she was 19 years old, now sells 190 million cards in the U.S. every year. That number doesn’t include the smaller exchange cards used in elementary school classrooms, which would swell the number to 1 billion. (Who receives the most Valentine’s Day cards each year? Teachers!)

Whether you send out Valentine’s Day cards—handmade, store-bought, digital—or not, we at Downtown Air & Heat hope you have a happy February 14th.

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Benefits of High Efficiency Heating Systems in Orlando, FL

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

The most exciting recent advance in indoor heating technology is the development of special high-efficiency systems that make maximum use of their fuel supply while returning exceptional levels of warmth. The U.S. Department of Energy recognizes superior efficiency heating systems with the ENERGY STAR label. But many heaters go even beyond the DOE’s requirements.

We’ll show you the benefits of a high-efficiency heating installation in Orlando, FL. If you have more questions, talk to our NATE-certified technicians at Downtown Air & Heat today.

How a high-efficiency heater benefits you (and the planet)

The most common kind of high-efficiency heating system is the condensing furnace. Instead of using a single heat exchanger, a condensing furnace uses two: the second exchanger harnesses the liquid vapor exhaust from the first exchanger and condenses it, releasing further heat and reducing the amount of energy waste. The tiny amount of exhaust remaining then goes up a flue made of plastic, which is much smaller than the standard exhaust flue.

Here’s how much a difference this makes in fuel use: Where a standard weatherized gas furnace has an AFUE rating of 81% (according to the U.S. Department of Energy), a condensing furnace can score anywhere from and AFUE of 90% all the way up to 98.5%—which means only 1.5% of the fuel ends up as waste.

How much can you save with a high-efficiency furnace? Using a hypothetical situation of moving from a 79% AFUE furnace to a 97% AFUE condensing furnace, a homeowner can save approximately $400 per year off heating costs. High-efficiency furnaces cost more to install, but at this level of savings, the furnace will pay for itself in around five years. With a life expectancy close to 20 years, the furnace will end up providing tremendous savings.

Another benefit to consider: a high-efficiency furnace is better for the environment. Because these furnaces use up almost all of their natural gas fuel supply, exhaust emissions are reduce to a minimum. That means less greenhouse gases released to the atmosphere.

See if a high-efficiency furnace will work for you

Even with the potential savings of high-efficiency furnaces, there are a few caveats. First, as mentioned above, they cost more to install. Second, they require special attention for maintenance. You should have regular maintenance for any furnace, but it’s especially important for condensing furnaces in order for them to maintain efficiency. Third, depending on your home, a high-efficiency furnace may not be your ideal heating choice. Always consult with HVAC experts before you make a decision for new heating installation.

Call our high-efficiency systems experts Downtown Air & Heat to talk about the possibilities for installing one of these systems in your home. We can take care of your heating installation in Orlando, FL… whatever system will work best for you.

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