Austin Air Companie Blog

Copper Coils Versus Aluminum Coils

April 15th, 2018

The residential HVAC industry has been going thru many changes over the past decade or so in terms of the metal materials they use to make certain pieces of HVAC equipment.

To give you some understanding first, there are two different separate type of coils that your HVAC system uses for your air conditioner or heat pump to work properly. The outdoor coil is the condenser coil, the indoor coil is the evaporator coil. This subject is primarily dealing with the indoor evaporator coil.

HVAC Refrigerant Leaks In All Aluminum Evaporator Coil

Come with me on a repair call in which I repair a Freon (refrigerant) Leak in an all aluminum evaporator coil. (Watch video embedded below) I also discuss the copper versus aluminum debate in the video.

This Katy, Texas AC blog subject for today is regarding the indoor coil or evaporator coil section of your residential HVAC system. Because usually, this part of the system starts to leak refrigerant more frequently than the outdoor or condenser coil. (Realize the AC refrigerant leak you may have could be in the outdoor coil just as much as it could be in the indoor coil: proper diagnosis must be performed, a guess is not a diagnosis. Just because an evaporator coil refrigerant leak is more common, doesn’t mean that this is where your refrigerant leak is.

As of 2018 nearly all, if not all manufactures of HVAC equipment make all aluminum evaporator coils. Copper tube and aluminum fin evaporator coils are at the beginning of the end as manufacturers continue to cut costs from their AC manufacturing processes.

Aluminum Coils Are Better Than Copper Coils

All Aluminum Evaporator coils are often called a new way of doing things. Truth be known, this isn’t the first time the HVAC industry used all aluminum evaporator coils. (indoor evaporator coil, don’t get this confused by the spiny fin aluminum condenser coil of Trane / American Standard brands, which was invented by GE in the early 1980’s.) With that said, about 30-40 years ago Carrier made their air handlers with all aluminum evaporator coils. The difference now is that the technology is much better this time around, but not infallible.

The problem with the technology back then was the connection point to the copper line set. They used a compression type connection to connect the line set to the evaporator coil. After some time this connection would leak. With no real way to repair this leak, the solution was to replace the coil with a copper tube and aluminum fin coil. You see when I say ‘copper coil’ I mean copper tube and aluminum fin. Manufactures to my knowledge have never made an all copper evaporator coil for residential air conditioning systems. That would be very costly, not to mention very heavy.

All Aluminum Evaporator Coils Are Probably Here To Stay

The drive away from copper tube evaporator coils is in my opinion due mostly to cost of the metal and because it’s been determined that formicary corrosion is leading to increased failures of this type of evaporator coil this increases the home owners cost as well as the manufacturer of the coil, because as the coils have become larger due to equipment efficiency requirements, the walls of the copper tube to these evaporator coils have become ‘paper’ thin or very close to it, which gives little to no protection against formicary corrosion.

To find out more about what formicary corrosion is and what it looks like watch the video embedded above. There are examples of formicary corrosion within the video. This type of corrosion effects all brands of copper tube and aluminum fin evaporator coils. The formicary corrosion attacks the copper part of the coil which causes it to leak refrigerant.

High efficiency air conditioning has driven up material cost in recent years because requirements to increase efficiency have made coil sizes increase as well. More material = higher cost. It’s only common sense that by using cheaper materials a manufacturer (all manufacturers) can cut these material costs.

So because aluminum is not effected by formicary corrosion, aluminum is the better coil material? Aluminum is a very reliable material. However, this does not mean an all aluminum coil will not fail ‘at some point’ due to refrigerant leaks.

Remember we’ve been here before with all aluminum coils (30-40 years ago). While the technology now is considerably different and in my opinion much better than before, aluminum coils can fail (spring refrigerant leaks) just as much as a copper tube aluminum fin can. Watch the video embedded above if you think an all aluminum coil can’t leak refrigerant.

I have installed many, many all aluminum coils over the course of my illustrious HVAC career (23 total years as of 2018). It is my opinion that all aluminum coils are a good replacement option in light of the formicary corrosion problem that is well noted and documented by the HVAC industry as a whole.

However, all aluminum coils used as evaporator coils in your AC system are not without their own set of problems or short comings. While all aluminum evaporator coils are currently better than the copper tube and aluminum fin coils they are replacing and quite reliable this doesn’t mean they will not fail at some point. If a salesman is trying to sell you on a shiny all aluminum coil, realize nearly all manufacturers make an all aluminum evaporator coil. This feature is nothing special as of 2018.

Air Conditioning Refrigerant Leaks To Remain A Challenge

Refrigerant leaks have always been a challenge to one degree or another in relation to an AC system. The difficulty now is that your AC system must be refrigerant leak free due to the rise in cost of all refrigerants. The method of recharging systems without leaks being repaired is a method of the past. It is no longer cost effective to do these practices any more.

If you watched the embedded video above demonstrating where this particular all aluminum coil failed, my personal opinion is that this coil most likely failed by some sort of corrosion because the coil sits in condensate waste water from air pulled from the home. It is unlikely this leak was cause by any other means.

Because I install all my own equipment, is the reason I can say such things without a shadow of a doubt. Certainly there could be other reasons not yet known. If anything, this example in the video shows the complexity of this subject.

There is no such thing as an air conditioning system that doesn’t fail, for one reason or another. You will always need a good reliable HVAC repair man. Maybe it’s me?

So what can you do? Build up a service history with me. (CHECK MY SERVICE AREAS HERE) I keep track of things of this nature via your service invoice, if a particular coil is failing often I will attempt resolution by offering other solutions. Some manufactures are better at different things and or different configurations of HVAC equipment. Just realize this isn’t a gimmick as I know that all brands of equipment fail at some point, the idea is to limit or reduce the failures as much as possible.

This is another reason why I sell more than one HVAC brand and these decisions are constantly being evaluated. I don’t just blindly keep replacing the same brand coil over and over again as it is my opinion this would result in insanity. Obviously this is ultimately your decision how to proceed, but I will at least attempt to offer another option that may give a better result due to my own personal experience in equipment choices I have sold in the past to other customers.

Currently my failure rates of all aluminum coils (any brand) that I originally installed is less than 2%. Some AC brands I’ve installed the failure rate on the coils is currently 0% (it’s likely not a brand you know). While all aluminum evaporator coil failures do happen it’s not as often as you may think. Some equipment configurations are more susceptible than others.

Thank you for visiting with me today. I hope your day is comfortable.

About the author of this blog:

My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with 23 years ‘hands on’ experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs. I specialize in Residential HVAC systems.
About Austin Air Companie:
Happy Birthday! Turning 10 years old in 2018. Has it really been this long?

Happy Birthday

       Austin Air Companie Celebrates 10 Years

Austin Air Companie

832-475-6895

“Your home comfort from A to Z”

Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

Better Service. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

 

 

AC Freon Refrigerant Leaks & High Pressure AC Sales

March 25th, 2018

The terms Freon and Refrigerant more or less mean the same thing when people use them in a sentence when referring to an air conditioner’s coolant gas. However, Freon and refrigerant terms are very broad based terms that only attempt to suggest what is really meant.

You see the word Freon is actually a trademark owned originally by Dupont Corporation and is now owned by Chemours Company and the refrigerant term is another broad based term that more or less means the same thing.

Repairing R22 Freon Leaks

Come along with me on a AC repair job I did to eliminate R22 Freon Leaks. Watch the video below.

You can subscribe to my You Tube Channel here.

Air Conditioning R22 versus R410a Refrigerant

You may be surprised to know that there are literally dozens of refrigerants all uniquely different depending on the application in which the refrigerant was intended to be used. You can’t put gasoline in a diesel engine and expect it to run, just as much as putting the wrong refrigerant in your central air conditioning unit in your home HVAC system. This will not work well and certainly not for very long.

All refrigerants are solvents to one degree or another and some refrigerants are also fuels and so because of flammability concerns they make poor choices for being used as a refrigerant. Propane and Gasoline are good examples of poor refrigerants because of explosion potential.

As refrigerants pertain to the high temp air conditioning market (residential and commercial structures) there are really only 3 refrigerants that represent reasonable long term choices. A few more refrigerants are being considered for the future as of 2018.

The old refrigerant being phased out is R-22. The new refrigerant is R410a. R410a refrigerant is really not all that new. R410a has been around for over 25 years if you can imagine that.

This R410a refrigerant was made by Honeywell in 1991, but was known as Allied Signal back then. The first R410a AC systems for residential use were installed in 1996. Currently many refrigerant companies make R410a refrigerant under licenses provided by Honeywell.

The change over to this new R410a refrigerant has been slow, mostly because equipment must be replaced to be able to use it and because pressures at which this R410a refrigerant operates at is considerably different than the R-22 refrigerant that the HVAC industry has grown accustomed to.

There also can be complications in some structures which can increase the cost to change over in addition to equipment costs. For the longest term and most efficient use, R410a is ultimately best choice for high temperature air conditioning application as of 2018.

R-22 Freon Cost Expected To Keep Rising

Production of R-22, commonly known and referred to as Freon, as it was heavily marketed by Dupont Corporation under that name, can no longer be produced after December 31, 2019 and the amount that can be produced is extremely limited in relation to the demand of it.

When there is strong demand for something with extremely limited supply, prices go up. Supply versus demand.

While warnings of cost increases related to R22 refrigerant have gone out, many are oblivious to what is happening in the residential HVAC market in terms of cost of repair and options on what the home owner can do to repair their AC systems without spending a fortune on repeated R22 recharges.

You have to fix the refrigerant leaks. If you don’t fix the refrigerant leak(s), the refrigerant will just leak back out. At this point R22 Freon is the worst when it comes to cost, but R410a requires leak repairs as well. The old way of recharging systems every year is hard on the wallet and this will likely only get harder for the foreseeable future.

High Pressure AC Sales Tactics

I touch base a little on this subject in the video embedded above in this blog post, for the simple reason the HVAC system in the video wasn’t that old but due to the R22 Freon problem, the best way forward was to replace the AC system and the home owner agreed even though I also offered to replace only the evaporator coil to fix the refrigerant leaks. These kinds of choices are always yours to make when you use my Katy, Texas AC repair services.

High Pressure AC sales come into play when a company uses the refrigerant leak problem (whatever refrigerant it is) to suggest that the whole HVAC system needs to be replaced. Like the AC and the furnace in the case of the video embedded above.

If the goal of the home owner is to go with the most energy efficient AC system they can buy, then in most cases the furnace would have to be replaced to obtain those high efficiency requirements, I say this so you understand that depending on the choices you make there may not be any other way forward if high efficiency air conditioning is your goal. This in turn raises the cost and if you’re planning to sell the home soon, it’s unlikely you will recoup the added cost of the high efficient HVAC system. Typically high efficiency HVAC systems are best suited to home owners who plan to live in their home for at least 15-20 years or longer. In some cases these high efficient HVAC systems are considered ‘lifetime HVAC systems’.

If the goal of the home owner is just to fix the AC, then depending on how long the home owner plans to own the home and where the problem with the AC system is can give you many more options when you are using a HVAC company (like mine) that is professionally skilled in those kinds of HVAC repairs.

My goal is to fix or repair your AC system and in many instances there is more than one way to accomplish this goal, obviously if one of these choices may waste your money I would think you would want to be informed of that before you select that option. Each choice I offer you is a matter of preference based on how long you plan to own the home among other considerations. If you call me to come to your home to fix your AC problems I will give you options best suited to fix your air conditioning system, given your current situation or comfort goals you are trying to achieve in your home. There is rarely a home comfort solution that fits everyone. It is my opinion that the decision is yours to make once all the facts are laid out to you.

A new HVAC system can break down just as much as an old one can. Regardless of brand. Professional installation of the HVAC equipment is by far the most important part of the decision which is why I personally install all HVAC equipment I sell, this will drastically cut your risk of breakdown more than anything else.

While it’s typically more common for an older system to break down, there are a number of HVAC systems (any brand) I see in the summer that are only a few years old and broken. Over 99% of these are HVAC systems I did not install. My trouble rate on AC equipment I’ve installed is less than 2%. That means less than 2 pieces out of 100 in any one given year. HVAC industry as whole typically accepts 25% failure rate as being ‘normal’. My experience is telling me many people are being duped.

With that said, no matter if you replace one part of your HVAC system or the whole thing, in my climate of Katy, Texas you will always need a good knowledgeable HVAC repair man. Maybe it’s me?

Thank you for visiting with me today. I hope your day is comfortable.

About the author of this blog:

My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a Ray Austin HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with 23 years ‘hands on’ experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems as of 2018. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R Mechanic, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs. I specialize in Residential HVAC systems.

About Austin Air Companie:

Happy Birthday! Turning 10 years old in 2018. Has it really been this long?

Austin Air Companie

832.475.6895

“Your home comfort from A to Z”

Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

 

Better Service. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

Air Conditioning Freon Leaks

February 25th, 2018

In the embedded video below I show an elaborate example of my air conditioning repair service in Katy, Texas in which I repair a refrigerant (freon) leak.

 

To start this topic off the right way it would be to tell you that ‘Freon’ is an improper term as it merely is a trademarked name owned by Chemours Company which was previously owned by Dupont Corporation. Dupont did a good job at putting this branded name on the lips of people across this country over the past 50 years or so.

The reason I use the term Freon is for ease of understanding for the customer base I serve. Nearly everyone out there knows that Freon means coolant or refrigerant for your air conditioner.

 

In fact if you search the meaning on line it gives refrigerant as the definition of the term. If you are here reading this right now you may be surprised when I tell you there are dozens and dozens of different kinds of refrigerants. This is really the main reason that Freon is an improper term. For the sake of understanding is the only reason I have gone this far to explain it.

For the application of high temperature air conditioning the refrigerant list is much smaller. This statement is to show you the subject of refrigerant leak repair is broad. For the sake of keeping this simple my focus is only the high temperature air conditioning application for your home or small business. Most of my HVAC service and repair work is for the residential air conditioning market in Katy, Texas area.

I am EPA universally certified to work with any refrigerant. This is important to point out, because if someone works on your system without proper knowledge it could make matters worse. There is skill involved in performing AC refrigerant leak repair like the one shown in the embedded video at the top of this blog post.

Because R22 also widely known as Freon, is being phased out (Production Ban begins December 31, 2019) there is a plethora of misinformation regarding various other refrigerants being used to replace it, because R22 is used in more than one application certain refrigerants have been developed for those applications and not the high temp air conditioning market. There are very good reasons why a certain refrigerant is selected or not selected for it’s intended application.

Because I am knowledgeable in these things it may in some cases make me come off as a know it all and that’s ok, but let me put it to you this way – I specialize in the air conditioning market for residential based HVAC systems if I don’t know a lot about something I specialize in I am in serious trouble right? I have a broader knowledge than that, but I don’t delve into those areas – because my sole focus is the Residential HVAC Market. While I do from time to time service commercial HVAC systems up to 25 Tons, this market is not my focus and is quite different from a service and repair aspect alone.

No Drop In Replacement For R22 Freon

So when you hear me say there is no drop in replacement for R22 Freon, realize I am saying this as it is for the High Temperature Air Conditioning Application. This is as of 2018. Time doesn’t stand still, the HVAC industry is continually evolving.

When I say ‘drop in replacement’ it does not mean mix it with whatever refrigerant is in your current system. The HVAC industry is full of people who don’t understand various terminology as it relates to refrigerant repairs and proper practices. There is no HVAC manufacturer that will warranty a system that has been charged with improperly mixed refrigerants.

Residential Air Conditioning Repair Specialist

Realize that what ever refrigerant your system has I am knowledgeable enough to know what type and kind you need. I only use virgin quality refrigerants. I do not reuse refrigerants that are pulled from your system to make repairs. Due to refrigerant contamination, it is never a good idea to do this practice. If I can store your AC system refrigerant in your AC system without removing it to make a refrigerant repair that is a completely different and longer story that I will not get into here.

The key to a well working air conditioning system is one that is not only free of refrigerant leaks, but also clean refrigerant with no acid. Acids can form under intense heat, so the threat is always present. Once acids form in the refrigeration circuit they start to eat away at the lining of your compressor windings. Once this thin protective layer on the windings of your AC compressor has been eaten away, your compressor will have a direct short to ground. An air conditioning compressor will not run with a short to ground. So you would be looking at a new AC unit at that point. Not any fun if you just spent money on a repair to your AC system.

You Will Always Need A Good HVAC Repair Man

Remember, whether you decide to repair your air conditioning system or replace it with a new one, you will always need a good knowledgeable HVAC repair man. If you live in the Katy, Texas area maybe it’s me?

Thank you for visiting with me today. I hope your day is comfortable.

About the author of this blog:

My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with 23 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

Austin Air Companie

832.475.6895

“Your home comfort from A to Z”

Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

Better Service. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

Furnace Repair

December 17th, 2017

This is a furnace repair video of a fairly common problem among this particular brand of furnace. (Carrier) I embed a video clip of the call so you can see what I am talking about in this HVAC repair blog post for Katy, Texas area.

For whatever the reason this particular furnace has problems with blower wheels getting blown apart. While I don’t have video of past repairs I’ve made of other Carrier furnaces over the years this is a problem I’ve seen numerous times over the past 15 or so years that Carrier has been manufacturing this furnace.

Many times shaking problems like this shown in the video above are related to what is called ‘ excessive static pressure’ with in the duct system so just because you see a shaking system doesn’t necessarily mean what I show in the video. I can tell you that this problem (shown in the video) is not likely from excessive static pressure, because it’s the only brand I’ve seen with this problem in 23 years of running service. (noisy blower wheel)

Just to be clear though, this isn’t a blog post just to pick on Carrier. All brands sometimes have their own unique way of failing to one degree or another. I have seen system failures on new equipment as early as 1 year old and the brand wasn’t Carrier. So you understand there isn’t one HVAC brand that is somehow better than another brand. All HVAC brands break.

With that said, the real purpose of this blog post is to show that this problem can be repaired and the furnace can live another day. Many times on repairs of this nature your HVAC company may try to sell you a new furnace.

This is where you have to be careful. It’s not that a new furnace won’t fix your problem of a noisy, shaky furnace, but the furnace you choose is a very important part of your HVAC equipment. Choosing the proper one can make a big difference in how your Air Conditioner operates and can determine how efficient your air conditioner can operate.

A furnace should last more than 20 years for a climate like Katy, Texas. This is why if and when it does come time to replace your furnace that you choose one with performance not only for heat, but also keeping in mind the efficiency of your air conditioning system as both of them work hand in hand to keep you comfortable year round.

About the author of this blog:

My name is Ray Austin. I am the video creator / editor of AustinAirCo youtube channel, author of this blog and the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with 23 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

 

Austin Air Companie

832.475.6895

“Your home comfort from A to Z”

Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

 

For more information you can always visit me on my main website @

www.austinairco.com

 

Better Service. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

AC Freon Leaks 2017

June 26th, 2017

Serving Katy, Texas area: Freon leaks in your air conditioning system pose a big challenge now and in the foreseeable future. Part of the problem can sometimes be a missed diagnosis, because what seems as a system low on Freon in fact could be something else entirely different. Some problems with your air conditioner can mimic that of a system being low on Freon when in fact the system isn’t low on Freon at all. To make matters worse the required amount of refrigerant needed for a modern AC system could be anywhere from 6 to 20 pounds of refrigerant. This isn’t something that should be guessed at.

Freon Sale Katy, Texas

Guessing Is Not Diagnosing An AC System

Guessing only leads to more guessing. This is why proper diagnosis (in person) is key and why inspection of your air conditioning system by a professional licensed HVAC contractor is necessary to getting the results of what you are looking for to begin with. If a system is thought to be low on Freon and the system is charged with additional Freon this additional Freon in many instances can cause the system not to work under heavy heat conditions and it’s not likely to help at all under low heat conditions either. You see when an AC system is under heavy heat conditions, the refrigerant expands. There is only so much room in your air conditioner. If the system is over charged with refrigerant it won’t work right just as much as if the system were under charged, not having enough refrigerant to operate properly.

Air Conditioners Do Not Use Up Freon

Air conditioning systems are designed to be perfectly sealed systems. If the system is leak free it can run forever without any fuss of needing to recharge Freon into the system. The problem is that as an air conditioner ages it can be susceptible to forming leaks sometimes due to poor servicing methods and some times due to just normal wear and tear. Most often the Freon leaks form within the equipment itself. Some times these leaks are repairable and sometimes the leaks are not repairable and may require some equipment to be replaced with new equipment to repair the Freon leaks properly.

Many times I get called out on systems that I have never been to before. Because I have no records of the system in question I can give you several options as a way to get to the point of repairing your system, there isn’t always a ‘one size’ fits all approach to these kinds of problems. Obviously in order to even get to this point the system has to be properly diagnosed to even know that it is low on refrigerant to begin with.

AC Freon Leaks Should Be Repaired Properly

If you have had to recharge your AC system before, there is a good chance the air conditioning system probably has a Freon leak. But even that is not certain if you are a victim of poor servicing methods. The problem with refrigerant leaks is that the best cure is repair the leak. The bigger problem is knowing where the leak is. This many times comes by way of experience and knowing where many leaks typically form with in your AC system. It’s not always that easy to find really small Freon leaks. If you are not certain where a leak exists and you replace only part of the AC equipment only to later find the system low on Freon again, there could be a good chance you made a repair for nothing or you just have an aging system that keeps springing refrigerant leaks. That’s what makes this difficult and why I am writing this blog right now.

Adding things to your system that don’t belong in your system to begin with to find Freon leaks or try to repair them with snake oil additives is not advisable because you are now placing things in your refrigeration system that shouldn’t be there to begin with. I have methods to find leaks that don’t involve adding things to a system. It is the better way to do it with better long term results. Obviously every method doesn’t result in success every time. In time conclusions can be drawn from my own experience and previous invoice records of a given property. Yes, there is more than one reason for a service invoice.

Importance Of AC Service Records

Service records play an important role of keeping your system properly tuned with the right amount of refrigerant your HVAC system needs to perform properly. This is why it is not a good idea to jump from one AC company to another. If servicing is poor at one company, it is likely to be no better at another. This is why you should hire a pro to service your HVAC equipment.

I can give you several options to get to the bottom of system performance issues as well as provide you with options to get that leak free AC system you are looking for. Then as you need service, the service records look to keep you further informed in regards to refrigerant charges and whatever else your system has needed previously in the way of repairs.

As of 2017, there is no such thing as a ‘better’ refrigerant all of them are expensive, and all of them require systems to be leak free. The old way of doing things was merely to recharge the system, but due to the continuing rising costs of refrigerants this option is not a viable long term solution. You must be looking at ways to find and fix those Freon leaks, regardless of what type of refrigerant your system uses.

Thank you for visiting with me today.

About the author of this blog:
My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with over 22 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

Austin Air Companie
832.475.6895
“Your home comfort from A to Z”
Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

For more information you can always visit me on my main website @
www.austinairco.com

Better Stuff. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

Air Conditioning Problems

May 1st, 2017

Air Conditioning Problems Katy, Texas

The single most common reason why my AC company exists. It seems that everyone chases around after that perfect elusive brand that is without worry of breakage. The gimmick of all gimmicks… an Air Conditioner that never breaks down. Every AC brand breaks down. So what can you do? You must find someone you trust in the area in which you live. This is not a do it yourself business.

Repair Any AC Brand*

I’m in the AC business. My business only exceeds by being able to fix or repair any Air Conditioning brand, sure I design systems & install them too, but that is only a small portion of my business, many people would rather live by mistake then to do what is deemed by me as doing it right. If you live within my service area of Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas and you call me it is unlikely I will ask you what brand of air conditioning equipment you have. [*Some limitations or restrictions may apply.]

Why does this matter? Because I want to fill you in on a topic that is often used by salesmen in general to sell you new equipment and more importantly a brand that is ‘supposedly’ better than what you have. I have given this the term that I call ‘brand bashing’. Your unit broke down so it is inferior to the brand I carry.

How convenient. Comparing a new machine to one that is broken? Are people really this naive? Not you… You wouldn’t be reading this / watching videos about such topics would you?

Manufacturer’s of Air Conditioning Systems

Did you know that there are only 7 manufacturers of Air Conditioning and Heating equipment? But there are a plethora of different brands and even more in differences of models among those brands? You wouldn’t be able to use them all in your lifetime. So you are going to pick one model of these based on a NAME?                                                Hello? Do you see a problem with that?

Ok, so let’s name them shall we? (in no particular order)

York

Carrier

Trane

Ruud

Lennox

Goodman

NorTek

I bet you recognize a few of those names. Those are the manufacturer’s. They are the one’s responsible for all brands, makes and models available today in the Air Conditioning and Heating market. Now let me make your head spin a little and name some off brands that just pop into my head that are also made from the same manufacturer’s I just named above in no particular order….

Generic Air Conditioning Brands

Rheem, Ducane, Heil, Tempstar, Ameristar, Payne, Bryant, Amana, American Standard, Arco Aire, Grand Aire, Maytag, Gibson, Frigid Aire, Aire Flo, Armstrong, Day n Night, GMC, Daikin, Comfort Maker, Cobra, Coleman, Whirl Pool, Kenmore

There could be a few more but even my head is hurting after all of that. So what’s my point?

Easy really. If there was ONE. Just one perfect brand among 7 different manufacturer’s then why are there so many? It is like anything else you buy.

But you know what I often hear in the field? Oh, I’ll buy anything but brand xyz?

Which brings me to another point… If I go to a home that already has the common preferred brand and it’s broken, there is no fan fare about brand. Realization of a gimmick is different from impression of something that is advertised as being better. When in fact it is not. They all break.

I Need An Air Conditioning Solution

So then what is the solution? Me. Certainly this won’t help you if you are outside of my service area. But if anything this gives you clues as to who you need to search for in your area. Someone like me.

Your other option is to look extensively at the maintenance AC men of the world and throw the dice. (You see the tune up ads everywhere you look right?) You may get lucky, you may waste a lot of time, energy and possibly money. There’s about a 40% chance you will find anyone really that good in larger companies and the face they send you will likely differ every time you call which will only decrease the odds out of your favor further.

If you call me on the other hand… it is me who will come to your home. Have you ever heard the phrase ‘Too many cooks in the kitchen spoil the broth?’ Well can you imagine what this does to your poor AC system?

Put the trust of your HVAC system in the hands of a pro (one pro) and don’t look back. ( I am a licensed HVAC contractor a technician in this state is merely registered with the state and must work under the supervision of a licensed HVAC contractor.)

Your comfort is my business and my job. That is a tough order to fill right? If it’s not a tough order to fill then you probably have a lot of time to waste and love being uncomfortable in your own home huh?

The truth doesn’t pay like a flashy gimmick seems to. Ah the world we live in. You’re smarter than all that nonsense or you wouldn’t be here. It is by no accident that my company comes highly rated. If the AC brands I installed were inferior how could my ratings as a company be that high?

If my work wasn’t that good how is it that I answer my own phone?

If my work wasn’t that good how is it that more than 50% of the calls I receive are repaired within 3 hours of receiving the call?

If I wasn’t the one doing the work and typing this how could I say the above comments?

Try me and you’ll find out what many of your neighbors already know.

Clearly anyone can brag on themselves on the internet, but my goal is to inform you here. This doesn’t mean I never make a mistake, but the odds of such are quite low and many times I catch the mistake before it becomes evident to you.

Thank you for visiting me today. I hope your day is comfortable – My business is Service & Comfort, as service is a part of comfort. It is my opinion you can’t have one without the other.

About the author of this blog:

My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with over 20 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

 

Austin Air Companie

832.475.6895

“Your home comfort from A to Z”

Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

For more information you can always visit me on my main website @

http://www.austinairco.com/Pages/default.aspx

 

Better Stuff. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

My Bedroom Does Not Get Cool Enough

October 2nd, 2016

This problem is more common than you think and this problem magnifies itself thru various times of the year. Shoulder seasons can typically be the more challenging times of the year to get comfortable in a bedroom at night.

AC shoulder seasons in Katy, Texas, a suburb of Houston can extend for several months before summer as well as several months after. This problem is directly related to the design of the air conditioning system. The air conditioner can not control temperature in a room that it was not designed to control. (The thermostat that controls the system is in a different room.)

The opposite of this ‘My bedroom does not get warm enough’ can be addressed at the same time. System control integrated with design defeats temperature problems when addressed properly.

Air Conditioning Design

If you have the above problem in which your bedroom rarely stays comfortable and it’s been determined it’s no fault of the air conditioner, then you likely have what is called a HVAC Design Problem. It is the invisible flaw until AC system performance is put thru heavy loads or heavy loads in one room with no system control.

Design of your HVAC system determines how well it will perform in various areas of the home given certain attributes (loads) and the temperature you are attempting to achieve. HVAC Design for the most part is an invisible attribute and more often than not rarely thought of until long after the problem is discovered. Most people, when replacing their AC system think of replacing a box with another box when the AC system breaks. Everyone is different when it comes to what they deem as comfortable or uncomfortable which is another attribute with which to contend with. The HVAC retrofit (service) market is inherently slanted toward ‘just replacing a box’ and because of this design of the AC system is rarely addressed.

Proper design for AC in regards to control of the system can get quite complicated as well as ratchet up installation costs. Much of this can be decided when it comes to how long you plan to stay in the home and how much you have budgeted to make your home a home by making it comfortable not only to sleep but also entertain guests. To grasp this a little easier is that control is temperature control in more than one area of the home. While this sounds simple, it is more complex for your HVAC system to do this properly because the area in which you are trying to cool or heat maybe much smaller of an area of the home such as a bedroom.

The more control you have of your HVAC system along with proper design and installation, the better your system will provide you the comfort you are searching for. If your air conditioner suffers from a design flaw, there is but one option to fix it and that is to redesign it. Home builders build. Rarely do you find HVAC design a top priority in the home builder real estate market. This is what separates the retrofit AC pros from the builders. A professional HVAC company is built around ‘quality’ AC system installations and not ‘quantity.’ Service for life and not a badge of how many HVAC systems that were installed. Different mindset, requires different thinking.

New Air Conditioning System Installation

The Installation and design of an HVAC system determine the performance, longevity and overall satisfaction of the AC system. Customer service after the sale is the final part. When I install a HVAC system, I install it with the intent of coming back and servicing that AC equipment when that need arises. In fact, I do the same thing if the home owner decides to only replace one piece of their HVAC system.

You see this isn’t only about what I want, it’s about what you want. However, there are limitations to everything. The consumer of today has more knowledge available to them than ever before, that is the other part of this blog is to inform you that you have more choices in regard to home comfort than you may be aware of. I am an HVAC Solution provider. I can give you options (choices) and recommendations based on your budget as well as what kind of comfort you are looking for to cool and heat your home. Communication is key for you to get the kind of comfort you are looking for your home.

I work 362 days a year. I know what you’re thinking… ‘that’s impossible’. I originally thought that myself. But because I install AC systems myself I have the ability to correct many installation problems upfront during the installation where as an installer may just view this as another ‘job’… if it doesn’t work the company will send someone else to fix it. (Hopefully) Air conditioning replacement is typically a once in 15 year thought when done right. Those reasons are what makes me able to work 362 days a year. It is extremely rare that I must go back to an installation, due to a problem and in many cases if I do they are typically only minor problems depending on how much of the HVAC system was replaced.

If you choose me (Austin Air Companie) I work for you, this isn’t just a job to me, this is my profession and my career. I don’t run a gimmick of the month service which is how I am able to give you the best service available. My AC service is worth what you pay for it. Technician roulette wheels with varying opinions among techs only goes so far. I say this from my own personal experience… yours may be different.

Air Conditioning done right is a 15 year appliance (national average). Certainly I can get busy, there are a good many of AC companies posing as professionals that are not. I have found that it’s easier to take a hands on approach rather than pass it off to someone that likely doesn’t have the experience and skills that I possess let alone the attitude to do the job as it should be done.

Air Conditioning Temperature Controls

The way air conditioning is designed for many homes is to put the control (thermostat) in main living areas. Temperature swings from one room to the next can be upwards of 5 to 10 degrees or more. Some of this depends on location of the room(s), how many people or other loads that are in the room. [Loads are considered heat loads as your air conditioner operates by removing heat.]

The cheapest way to resolve this problem is to live with what you have. So if you are here thinking there is some magical method to solve this problem I am here to tell you straight, there is not. The cheaper you try to fix this the more likely it is you will create additional problems up to an including the destruction of your HVAC system. I am here to do the job right, if you want snake oil you will have to look elsewhere.

Temperature controls also known as thermostats, are what is used to cycle your air conditioner on and off. These are merely elaborate switches that turn the HVAC system on or off. Most air conditioning systems are either on or off single speed air conditioners. If you live in a humid climate like Katy, Texas and your goal is comfort then you will probably be best advised to consider a 2 speed air conditioning and heating system with dehumidification functions.

HVAC Zoning: An Air Conditioning Dream

Putting cooling or heating where it is needed within your home. Comfort. You know that fuzzy feeling you feel on a brisk autumn day. Imagine that everyday all year long in the favorite room of your home.

Remember what I said earlier: ‘different mindset, requires different thinking’. Due to energy costs your budget may not include cooling the whole home as cool as you would like it in the bedroom, unless the home’s foot print is very small then you probably wouldn’t need zoning. HVAC Zoning for sure isn’t for everyone it is a choice and design enhancement to obtain more comfort and make your HVAC system performance the best it can be.

The thought behind zoning is to put ‘conditioned air’ where you are at in the structure. (In this example: your home.) The idea is that you can only be in one room at a time. Thirty three percent of your life will be spent in the bedroom. (eight hours divided by 24.) The lack of a good night’s sleep can effect your entire day.

By making your bedroom more comfortable via zoning can make other rooms perform better in heat waves by closing the zone to the bedroom when not in use. The capacity of the system under this scenario would then be provided to supplying comfort to other occupied areas of the home. Because people are creatures of habit and often go to bed the same time every night the thermostat for those zone(s) can be programmed easily to control temperature without much thought or fuss.

Another way to think about zoning is your home’s plumbing and electrical systems. You have more than one faucet in your home right? More than one light switch? These are other examples of zoning that reside in your home already, to help you understand what zoning is. Just realize that zoning an HVAC system ‘properly’ is a bit more complicated than electrical and plumbing systems.

Proper HVAC Installation

I emphasize the word ‘properly’ because there are many zone systems as well as basic AC systems that do not work the way they should. Design means everything and in some cases a zone system may not work for what you want to do. This is the definition of a true professional in which you are sold a solution to your problem and not just selling something to be selling something. If you catch my drift.

I hope this blog post eliminates some confusion with this very common problem as well as highlights your ability to go about correcting this problem to your satisfaction. Remember this is an advanced problem, there is nothing ‘basic’ about it. If you don’t go into it with the attitude of doing it right, it very well could be very costly with little to no help solving the actual problem.

Problem solving by definition should be to solve the problem ‘without’ creating additional problems. Otherwise you’re likely buying ‘snake oil’ to one degree or another.

About the author of this air conditioning blog:
My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with over 20 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

Austin Air Companie
832.475.6895
“Your home comfort from A to Z”
Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

For more information on AC & Heating
for your home visit me at my main website @

www.austinairco.com

Better Stuff. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

R22 Freon Production Ban

September 10th, 2016

Oh that pesky little government is at it again… LOL. Certainly I’ve heard it all when it comes to politics in general. But you’d be surprised to know that the laws effecting R22 Freon production now (2016 and beyond) were finalized and signed by the USA in 1987 via the Montreal Protocol and ratified in 1988. The Montreal Protocol has been amended only 4 times since 1987. This agreement was an international agreement that has been signed by 197 countries.

Freon Production Ban Time Line Chart

Freon Time Line Chart

So why are you just now learning about this now if it happened in 1987? Part of it was to give time to come up with a new refrigerant to replace the old bad one. There are many refrigerants, all with varying properties to one degree or another. Some refrigerants make poor choices due to flammability concerns, others may not distribute oil thru the system properly and cause reliability concerns in regards to the break down of the system compressor. There are many more concerns than these but to keep this short I will stop there.

R22 Freon Replacement

As of 2016 there is no ‘approved’ drop in replacement for R22 Freon for high temp application otherwise known as Air Conditioning. Choosing an unapproved refrigerant will void ‘ANY’ manufacturer warranty, increase utility cost to run the system, reduce capacity of the system, cause the system to not cool properly in heat wave conditions, cause the compressor to fail prematurely due to improper oil return to the compressor.

As of 2016 there is only one proven refrigerant for the future and the name of this refrigerant is R410a. It is sometimes improperly referred to as Freon or a more popular proper trade name it is called Puron. R410a refrigerant is not a drop in replacement for R22 Freon. Refrigerants can not be mixed and work properly, nor can you use R410a in a air conditioner that was designed for R22 Freon, it simply will not work ‘reliably’. The AC system must be replaced with equipment designed to work with R410a. Air Conditioning systems are engineered and designed to operate with a specific refrigerant. For reliable operation of the AC system one must know what they are doing and use the appropriate refrigerant for the system in question.

There are many unscrupulous vendors and those that claim there are some refrigerants that can be used to replace R22 Freon. When it comes to the high temp air conditioning application these claims are false. The nature of a con game is something that will ‘easily’ solve a problem. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying… “if it sounds too good to be true… it probably is.” But yet people over and over again fall for these snake oil AC repairs.

The notion behind these so called remedies is by giving you a cheap price up front. The system may run for a few months if you are lucky and probably not much longer than a year depending on a multitude of factors like loads on the equipment, line set length, age of the equipment, the heat load the system is running in and so on.

Residential AC Compressor Problems

When doing things improperly to save money up front the end result is most often a dead compressor or a AC system that will not cool properly during a heat wave as well as high utility bills. The money you supposedly saved up front will dry up in no time when it can’t perform properly during a heat wave. The more you run the system during a heat wave the more likely you are to burn up the compressor (*If you run the machine with an improper refrigerant*) due to a lack of oil return to the compressor crankcase. (The compressor will seize up under this scenario.)

Your AC will not work without the compressor. That is a major component so now you’re most likely looking at a new air conditioning unit when this part fails.

An air conditioning system (just about any brand) is a 15 year appliance when installed and maintained properly. If you decide to play games with it, try to cut corners, try to reverse engineer things like using the proper virgin refrigerant the system was designed for as well as proper installation procedures it is unlikely to make it past even a few years without some significant problem.

There is special equipment required to be able to install an air conditioner properly. If you use an unlicensed person to install your system there is a good chance they don’t have the proper equipment to install the AC system properly. How will you know for sure that they do or don’t have all the tools and materials needed to install the AC system?

An improperly installed air conditioning system is the last kind of mess you want to have to deal with in your home. There are good reasons that manufacturer’s require licensed HVAC contractors to install the system in order to offer any warranty on the HVAC equipment.

You know what the cure for doing it wrong is? To do it over again. You don’t want to do that do you? These words are intended to help you avoid making a serious mistake.

The comfort in your home or lack thereof can wreck havoc on your finances. It is a financial decision and one you should not take lightly. Do it right the first time.

Thank you for visiting with me today. I hope I gave you some valuable insight in this AC blog topic to help you with this challenging problem regarding R22 Freon and the change over to R410a Puron. Remember R22 Freon is going away. It is not coming back. It is in your best interest to upgrade your system by replacing it with an R410a engineered air conditioner.

If you have a Freon leak in your evaporator coil you can replace the evaporator coil only but under this scenario you would continue to use virgin R22 Freon. As time gets closer to 2020 there ‘may’ not be any R22 Freon available at any price. There is no way to know for sure what will happen until it does. Using non compatible refrigerants is not recommended under any circumstances.

The days of recharging an air conditioning system are pretty much over. The refrigerant leak(s) must be found and repaired.

About the author of this air conditioning blog:
My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with over 20 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

Austin Air Companie
832.475.6895
“Your home comfort from A to Z”
Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

For more information on AC & Heating
for your home visit me at my main website @
www.austinairco.com

Better Stuff. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

A Better Air Conditioning & Heating System

September 3rd, 2016

Typically when you think of discussions about what makes one AC system better than another, the subject often gets turned into discussions about particular brands or manufacturer’s of said air conditioning equipment. This discussion winds up being anything productive as it is rarely about what is important to you and the comfort you will obtain for your home. Getting on the this brand is better than this brand band wagon is not going to help you any in my opinion. So then what is the best air conditioning system when it comes to addressing real issues in regards to your comfort not to mention indoor air quality? I like to call this: ‘The Devil Is In The Details’!

Note: This article is to describe what is better from a whole HVAC system approach with functions and benefits of this kind of HVAC equipment. These HVAC systems are not piece meal type systems. The whole HVAC system replacement approach has additional benefits other than what is discussed here. Never underestimate the importance of a great HVAC installation as well as a HVAC company known for repairing such systems, regardless of whether you are replacing one piece or the whole HVAC system all at once. There is no substitute for great service.

Humidity Control & Dehumidification

In a humid location like Katy, Texas it’s amazing that more HVAC systems in this area aren’t geared for controlling humidity better than what they do. The problem is that single speed air conditioning systems ‘over cool’ the air and cycle off too quickly in cooler weather to combat this problem properly. The AC system is controlled by temperature and nothing else and due to single speed operation of the system most of the time the unit cycles too soon to really control humidity in the home much at all.

Better humidity control will make you feel much more comfortable at higher temperatures than you would without it. What makes this problem so difficult to address is that humidity is independent from temperature. In a humid climate like Katy, Texas it can be humid even when temperatures dip below typical cooling temperatures. If it’s 75 degrees outside and 80% or higher humidity that is not very comfortable. With a 75 degree outside temperature your indoor single speed AC system isn’t going to run long enough to make you feel as comfortable as you could be in high humidity. The humidity levels in your home can easily be greater than 65% RH (relative humidity).

Did you know that RH readings of 60% or more inside your home can cause mold growth under the right conditions? Mold growth can contribute to an assortment of indoor air quality (IAQ) concerns. Humidity is something that is very important to your health as well as your comfort. You can test this yourself by buying a humidity meter for your home. Realize this reading will fluctuate just as much as temperature does during the various seasons of the year.

Whole Home Dehumidification Systems

This type of dehumidification system is a separate system that works with your current HVAC system. It has a separate control and it’s only job is to dehumidify the air in your home. This ultimately would be the best way to control humidity in your home. The problem with this option is cost. Part of this cost is the system itself, maintenance of that system and operational costs. It is estimated that running this type of system in a humid climate can add an additional 30% to your monthly electric bill. If you have two HVAC systems in your home that can get pretty costly of a consideration.

The real advantage to a whole home dehumidification system is that you could add it to your existing HVAC system without replacing any of that equipment. Over time operational costs and maintenance costs may become prohibitive for many home owners to consider this option.

HVAC Systems With Dehumidification Control

Humidity control with these systems is probably not the proper term to use. As I said earlier in this blog post, humidity in the home is a complex problem to solve because humidity is independent from temperature. So in many respects humidity control via your HVAC system is derived via an assortment of varying degrees of options or choices.

Some single speed AC systems can offer a degree of dehumidification control depending upon the furnace that the AC system is matched with. However, in my opinion it is very little difference than what you would have via just a single speed air conditioner and basic thermostat control. Part of the issue with this is ‘over cooling’ already mentioned. Because a single speed air conditioner delivers full capacity every time it turns on. During cooler and humid periods humidity control with this system would prove futile in most situations.

Multi Speed HVAC Systems

You see your air conditioner is really a dehumidification device. It is dehumidifying the air every time it runs. However, it is mostly controlled by temperature alone. Over capacity will cause the unit to cycle more and not run long enough to dehumidify the air. By installing a multi stage HVAC system or multi speed HVAC system you get better humidity control just by the way these particular HVAC systems run most of the time as opposed to a single speed AC system.

There are 2 speed air conditioners, 2 stage air conditioners, 5 speed air conditioners as well as variable speed air conditioners. The 2 speed and 2 stage AC variety more or less operate in first speed or first stage before enabling second speed or second stage. While running in speed 1 or stage 1 the system is running at a reduced cooling capacity which causes the system to run longer. This reduced cooling capacity could vary from 50% to 60 or 70% of the overall capacity of the HVAC system. Because the AC runs in this first stage most of the time it will run longer and dehumidify the air better than that of a single speed AC. The more speeds or stages the AC has the better it will control variations of the load of the home, the longer the system will run which in turn reduces and controls humidity better.

Dehumidification of these multi stage HVAC systems is included in normal operation of the unit when it cycles as well as a band of control via the thermostat controller of the system in question.

Indoor Air Quality & Air Filtration

Another benefit with these dehumidification enabled HVAC systems is that you get the best comfort for your home as well as better indoor air quality. You could add better filtration to one of these systems and attack the indoor air quality on both fronts… moisture content of the air as well as dust particle filtration. This is the best and proper way to address indoor air quality concerns.

If you suffer from allergies, asthma or other air quality problems I have the solution for you. Not all indoor air quality solutions are created equal. Over the years many IAQ systems have come to market that produce ozone. It has since been determined that ozone in any amount is not good for you and over time can actually make your symptoms worse.

Many times within the HVAC industry, solutions are often given by treating a symptom rather than addressing the real problem. I often refer to these as gimmicks bent on selling you something without really do much for you or putting the interest of selling you something just for the sake of selling you something ahead of what your true goals are. You would probably get more mileage out of chasing your own tail.

I go to the extent I go, to show you the right way to accomplish what you want to accomplish. Stay in the loop and subscribe to my You Tube Channel here. The solutions I offer are solutions that work. Why would you want anything other than that?

Thank you for visiting with me today. I hope I helped you understand things more clearly in regards to finding comfort options for your home. As always, I hope your day is comfortable.

About the author of this air conditioning blog:
My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with over 20 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

Austin Air Companie
832.475.6895
“Your home comfort from A to Z”
Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

For more information on AC & Heating
for your home visit me at my main website @

www.austinairco.com

Better Stuff. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.

Air Conditioning Service

August 16th, 2016

Air conditioning repairs, AC service or new AC equipment installations require the magical little word called ‘SERVICE‘. Without that word you’re in big trouble if a problem develops with your AC system. What does that word mean to you?

This little word ‘service‘ is what in many ways separates one AC company from another. Now all things aside some people view service differently than others. Maybe due to household schedules or whatever. However, your AC system whether new, a few years old or even a decade old or older can break down at any time. Brand of the equipment doesn’t matter all that much in most cases.

Weekend, Night time, Holiday, etc. An air conditioner doesn’t know time like you or me. So why is this important?

If you buy a new HVAC system and it breaks down, your best option to repair it is thru your installing HVAC contractor, because this is who you bought the system thru. It would be a ‘HUGE’ conflict of interest to let another HVAC contractor repair your HVAC system that was installed by another.

If your HVAC system is older and out of the manufacture warranty envelope then it only matters to what degree you trust the HVAC provider that you are calling.

Any HVAC company you use should be licensed and insured and the license number should be displayed on all invoices, advertisements and both sides of the front quarter panel of the service vehicle that comes to your home. (This is Texas law.)

HVAC System Problems & Conflicts of Interest

So why then is this a conflict of interest to have Company ‘B’ work on a new HVAC system installed by Company ‘A’?

Because lets say you have two companies without mentioning names… you have company ‘A’ and company ‘B’. Company ‘A’ installed your new HVAC system.

Your new AC system is now broken and you call ‘A’ but they are closed, don’t answer their phone, goes to voice mail or maybe after hours call service in which you sit on hold for who knows how long only to be told after waiting on hold –that an on call person will call you back in some cases hours later. Say What?

So you think… not clearly due to the excess heat in your house, that you’ll just call another company that services HVAC equipment. Company ‘B’ answers the phone not realizing they are a 3rd party to your otherwise inoperable dilemma. Say they come out diagnose the system for you, charge for labor and other things not covered by your manufacture warranty. They leave, the system works for awhile then breaks down again.

You now decide to call company ‘A’ back. After investigating the system Company ‘A’ determines someone else has been working on it and decides to take the brash approach of denying a warranty claim on your otherwise new AC system. You are in a bad position to say the least.

Unresolved AC Technical Problems

Another common scenario to this is Company ‘A’ the installing company of your new or fairly new HVAC system is called back during normal business hours, they make a repair to the AC unit under warranty terms of the installation charge for labor or whatever charges aren’t covered by the warranty of the AC system.

The AC system works for awhile and then breaks again OR the AC system doesn’t work at all still or worse than before. Part of the reason some of these HVAC companies exist is to replace HVAC systems with no service or technical department to repair the systems they sell. A good deal is a bad deal in short order.

Sometimes they may brag about how many HVAC systems they have installed. But they never mention how many of them they still service? You see the problem with that? QUALITY over quantity OR QUANTITY over quality. Which would you want?

A parts changer is defined as changing parts without proving the part has actually failed. A guess is a guess. Guessing will not fix or repair too many air conditioning systems. Believe it or not you will pay for it one way or another. Why not do it right the first time?

Katy, Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor

This is what I am (Licensed HVAC Contractor), you can’t run a HVAC company in Texas (legally) by any other means. If you hire someone working under another license (commonly AC Technician) your recourse for AC problems that develop with your system goes thru them. If it is a ‘side job’ installed by a technician it is unlikely the warranty covering that system is worth the paper it’s printed on.

I take the HVAC contractor thing to the next level in that I do all my own HVAC installations and AC repairs. I don’t use Technicians, Subs or Installers. I have found I can offer much better quality when I’m fully involved in any project whether it is repair, replace or SERVICE! (It is actually me writing this blog – Ray Austin. No one can be me, but me.) Subscribe to my You Tube Channel here.

Side Job AC Installations Warranty Void By Manufacturer

There are little disclaimers within the warranty limitations that protect manufacturer’s from unlicensed, unskilled people from selling, installing and or servicing equipment.

Improper installation is not warrantable just as much as purchasing equipment over the internet. If you have to resort to such methods imagine how much trouble you are going to have if your AC equipment fails unexpectedly?

Side jobs are done in cash. A technician doing a side job doesn’t want any documentation because if his boss finds out he faces immediate termination from his regular job. You can’t hide a side job from a licensed HVAC contractor. If you don’t have any documentation of installation how do you expect to be covered by a Manufacture Warranty?

Every piece of AC equipment made has unique model number and serial numbers that are attached to the HVAC license that bought it. If there was no HVAC license present at the time of sale, the warranty is virtually worthless in most cases. A technician license is not a valid license in and of itself. In Texas, a valid HVAC contractor license is gold in color, a technician license is white.  A technician license is merely a registration with the state. Send in your $20 and boom! You are now a AC technician too? Ironically it doesn’t mean much without EPA certification. The more you read here, the more you will learn.

No Licensed HVAC contractor worth their ‘salt’ is going to warranty or install an air conditioner that you bought over the internet. You buy it, you install it and warranty it yourself.

A new AC system install a few years old with problems and you’re calling a HVAC contractor that didn’t install it? What do you suppose this Licensed AC Contractor is going to think when he sees the equipment in question?

Why aren’t you calling the HVAC contractor who installed it?

Just for fun, I’ll tell you a few likely titles of this made for home movie:
“NO WAY OUT!”
“That’s Going To Cost You”
“No Where To Hide”

Professional AC Repairs

This Air Conditioning blog is designed to help you make wise decisions when it comes to your choices regarding comfort decisions for your home. I hope you attained this information before making a costly mistake.

All is not lost, costly mistakes are lessons, provided you learn from them and don’t repeat them. An HVAC system is, by a national average, a 15 year appliance and in some cases can last even longer when installation and maintenance is done properly and adequately. Notice I didn’t mention a brand name here, brand bashing is not professionalism by any stretch of the imagination.

Nothing is perfect in an imperfect world. AC Equipment that I’ve installed myself has failure rates within the warranty period that run in a tight range of 2-3% annually. Most HVAC companies have new equipment failure rates often 8 times or higher than this figure. In some cases this may be due to a lack of maintenance by home owner, improper installation, improper diagnosis or out right incompetence. Please choose your HVAC contractor carefully and wisely.

Thank you for visiting with me today. I hope your day is comfortable!

About the author of this blog:
My name is Ray Austin. I am the owner and operator of Austin Air Companie, a HVAC Service Company serving Katy, Texas | Cypress, Texas | Richmond, Texas and some surrounding areas. I am a Texas Licensed HVAC Contractor with over 20 years experience in Air Conditioning and Heating Systems. I hold an AOS degree in HVAC/R, EPA universally certified to handle any refrigerant and NATE certified in HVAC installations and repairs.

Austin Air Companie
832.475.6895
“Your home comfort from A to Z”
Air Conditioning | Controls | Heating | Zoning

For more information on AC & Heating
for your home visit me at my main website @

www.austinairco.com

Better Stuff. Done Right. On Time. Guaranteed.