Apex Heating and Air - heat pump, furnace, HVAC during winter

7 Hot Heating Tips to Prepare Your Home for Winter

Before the winter cold sets in, ideally in advance of that first hard snow, it’s important to make sure that that your furnace is operating safely and effectively. And your wallet will surely thank you for taking these dollar-saving energy efficiency-increasing measures.

  1. Flip your thermostat: Believe it or not, it’s easier than you think to forget this simple task. The fall weather fluctuates between scorching and chilly on a daily basis, you get caught up in end-of-year festivities, and before you know it, you are still cooling when you should be heating. While you are at it, make sure that your thermostat is still functioning correctly. When you turn it on, listen and make sure the system starts running immediately. And it should go without saying to test the system well in advance of needing heat regularly.
  1. Change your filters: Replacing your filters is something that should be performed seasonally, at a minimum, if not monthly. It’s a quick and easy task that can go a long way in preserving the life of your HVAC system. Failure to do so can result in a clogged filter, which reduces airflow so that your system has to work harder (thus increasing your utility bill) and decreases air quality.
  2. Clean the chimney: If you use your fireplace during the winter season, inspecting your chimney is an absolute must. If there is an obstruction or buildup of soot, you risk carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be deadly. And don’t forget, gas fireplaces need inspected as well.
  1. Check the cracks: Cold drafts coming in from doors and windows mean heat is also leaking out. In fact, industry estimates show that approximately 10% of a home’s heat loss occurs in these areas. Consider easy upgrades to conserve energy, such as weather stripping, caulking, and even heavy drapes.
  1. Test your carbon monoxide detectors: Carbon monoxide is a clear, odorless gas that is impossible to detect on your own. For your family’s safety, it is absolutely imperative to test your detectors and make sure they are working properly.
  1. Clear the area around your furnace: Don’t turn your furnace area into a storage area! Remove objects from around the furnace and on top of or in front of air vents, especially those that are flammable. And certainly never store items such as lawn mowers, gas-powered tools, and paints nearby!
  1. Get a tune-up! An annual tune-up on your furnace will ensure your system is in perfect working condition and operating at peak performance. Our qualified technicians will check and clean burners, check all safety controls, check all venting and terminations, check for loose or frayed wires, look for leaks or deterioration, and more! Schedule an appointment today!And remember: if you aren’t familiar with how your heating system works or are unsure, always contact a professional.
Customer consultation with Apex Heating & Air Conditioning

How much does a new HVAC system cost?

The cost of a new Heating, Ventilation and Cooling (HVAC) system can be significant. Prices may vary depending on your square footage, “SEER” rating (seasonal energy efficient ratio rating) of unit, layout, where you live, manufacturer or energy rebates and the availability of a seasonal discount.

At Apex Heating and Air your home comfort is a top priority. Finding the right company to install your new system should be as well. As you shop, ask for references, use online resources, and ask your neighbors. The cheapest price might not be the best price. Quality equipment, and more importantly quality installation, should be considered when comparing prices. You typically get what you pay for!

Complete HVAC systems average in cost from $5,000 to $15,000 or more, depending on your needs. This price assumes you don’t already have the required infrastructure in place (ex: ductwork, etc.). If you need a Central Air Conditioner, the average cost ranges from $3,000 to $6000 for an average 1800/2000 sq ft home. If you are shopping for a central heating furnace, the costs range from $2500 to $8000. Ductwork usually costs from $2000 to $5000. Most existing homes do not need this extra cost.

Since there are so many variables that impact your price, have a professional and reputable dealer come to your home for an accurate estimate. At Apex Heating and Air, Inc. in Apex, NC, we provide free estimates for both residential and commercial needs. Let our professionals help evaluate your new HVAC system needs!

Contact us today at 919.467.8823 to find out if you qualify for a rebate or discount on a new system.

Benefit from Improved Indoor Air Quality in your Apex Home or Office

Did you know that indoor air quality is often just as bad as what is outside? Pet dander, dust mites, and cleaning chemicals all contribute to poor air quality in your home. Tightly sealed homes can lead to a buildup of toxic substances in your home. These substances cause frequent colds or breathing problems such as allergies. Let Apex Heating and Air Conditioning in Apex manage your indoor air quality with purifiers and other systems to maintain the health and wellbeing of your family.

Helping you get better air quality

You have a number of solutions that help you maintain the indoor air quality in your home throughout the year. Get professional installation of these items to ensure that they work at optimal performance. Ask us about:

  • Air purification services to target the pollutants in your home.
  • Air filtration services to add a layer of protection in your ducts and maintain high air quality between services.
  • Humidity control with a whole house humidifier to maintain the optimal humidity during the dryer months, and a whole house dehumidifier to remove the humidity in the air when the weather is wetter.
  • Comfort Controls, such as an electronic thermostat or indoor air quality thermostats, to maintain the right temperature for optimal humidity and comfort any time of the day.

Solutions for better breathability in the Morrisville and Holly Springs areas

Contact Apex Heating and Air Conditioning at 919-467-8823 / 919-367-0102 in Apex, Holly Springs and Morrisville for installation of humidifiers and dehumidifiers. For more than 48 years, our HVAC company has been providing optimal solutions to local homes and businesses for better breathability. Trust us to keep your family healthy throughout the year.

Preventive Maintenance does make a difference

HVAC residential heating and air repair serviceYou wouldn’t drive your car 100,000 miles without changing the oil. The same logic holds true for your home comfort system. Regular HVAC preventive maintenance is the best way to ensure trouble-free operation and peak performance. It can also keep your energy bill from getting out of control.

Did you know that preventive maintenance can effectively DOUBLE THE LIFE of your furnace or air conditioning system? Statistics show that your system should last 17-20 years with regular maintenance, but most only last 9-12 years without regular maintenance. Proper HVAC equipment maintenance is also essential to ensuring that your home or office is protected from exposure to issues of poor indoor air quality to ensure safety and comfort. Though system life is determined by a large number of factors including type of installation, climate, quality of the original system, among many others, don’t throw away thousands of dollars on premature system replacement.

HVAC Preventive Maintenance Checklist

Many dealers provide priority service for their customers who have an annual maintenance or service agreement. Bi-annual preventative maintenance will ensure that your system runs as efficiently as possible. Your local dealer will perform the following tasks, depending on the unit:

Outdoor Units

  • Inspect unit for proper refrigerant level and adjust if necessary
  • Clean dirt, leaves and debris from inside cabinet
  • Inspect base pan for restricted drain openings—remove obstructions as necessaryInspect coil and cabinet—clean as needed
  • Inspect fan motor and fan blades for wear and damage—on older models lubricate as needed
  • Inspect control box, associated controls/accessories, wiring and connections. Controls may include contactors, relays, circuit boards, capacitors, sump heat and other accessories. All control box and electrical parts should be checked for wear or damage.
  • Inspect compressor and associated tubing for damage

Indoor Units

  • Inspect blower assembly (includes blower housing, blower wheel and motor)
  • On older models, lubricate motor and inspect and replace fan belt if needed
  • Check combustion blower housing for lint and debris
  • Inspect evaporator coil, drain pan and condensate drain lines. Clean as needed
  • Inspect for gas leaks in gas furnaces
  • Inspect burner assembly—clean and adjust as needed
  • Inspect ignition system and safety controls—clean and adjust as needed
  • Inspect heat exchanger or heating elements
  • Inspect flue system—check for proper attachment to the furnace, any dislocated sections, and for signs of corrosion.Inspect control box, associated controls, wiring and connections
  • Check air filters
  • Inspect conditioned airflow system
  • Monitor system starting characteristics and capabilities
  • Listen for abnormal noise
  • Search for source of unusual odors
  • Monitor air conditioning and heat pump systems for correct refrigerant charge
  • Measure outdoor dry bulb temperature
  • Measure indoor dry and wet bulb temperature
  • Monitor gas furnace for correct line and manifold gas pressure—make adjustments as needed
  • Measure temperature rise and adjust airflow as needed
  • Check vent system for proper operation
  • Monitor system for correct line and load volts/amps
  • Monitor system operation per manufacturer’s specifications

When should you replace your HVAC system?

Many times, your system just decides not to work one day. The decision to purchase a new system was made for you! Hopefully this will happen after the 12 year mark. Actually, the admired “lifespan” according to Energy.gov is about 15 to 20 years. If the correct system is chosen and the install is quality, this goal is realistic. Did you know that only half of installed units will last 15 to 20 years?

There are three key factors to consider when deciding to replace an “older” unit NOW as opposed to LATER. First, utility bills are a key factor. Energy Efficiency is real. Today’s air conditioners can use 30% to 50% less energy. This can offer the consumer much savings!

Secondly, repair bills can begin adding up. It’s typically during extreme temperature times. Keep in mind that repairing a system that is 12 years or older will not necessarily extend the life of the unit at all. It could buy you a little time, but not necessarily. There are many pieces to the puzzle that allow a system a “long life span”.

Lastly, safety could be a concern. Older heating and air conditioning systems could have electrical issues and cracks in the furnace could leak carbon monoxide into your home. Safety should always be top priority.

In the future, as you decide to repair or replace – keep these key points in mind! Then take into consideration the peace of mind the warranties of a new system offer you, the consumer!