Posted by & filed under HVAC, Indoor Air Quality, Uncategorized.

A common misconception that many homeowners harbor is that the most powerful air conditioner is always the best option. Many of these people learn the hard way that a high-capacity air conditioner is not only pricey upfront, but it can also lead to unnecessarily expensive energy bills. Here are a few tips that will help homeowners properly size their air conditioner for comfort and economic practicality.
Do the Math
In order to properly size your air conditioner, you need to know the entire square footage of your home. If you don’t know the total square footage, you can calculate it yourself by multiplying the length and width of each room and finding the sum square footage of all the rooms. Then, you can multiply the total square footage of the home by 25 BTUs to find the BTU capacity needed for your air conditioner.
Consider Other Factors
While math will point you in the right direction when it comes to properly sizing your air conditioner, it is important to consider other factors. Some factors you should keep in mind when sizing your air conditioner include:
• If your house is in a sunny area, increase the BTU capacity by 10 percent. The BTU capacity for a heavily shaded house should be reduced by 10 percent.
• Add 4,000 BTU if you use your kitchen frequently all-year-round.
• If a room is occupied by more than two people regularly, add 600 BTU for each additional person.
Properly sizing an air conditioner will boost comfort and cut down on energy costs. For more information about how to properly size your air conditioner, don’t hesitate to contact Barrett & Sons Inc. today Questions? Give Barrett & Sons Inc. a call today at (210) 659-5801. We complete air conditioning installation in Cibalo TX.
Disclaimer: The suggestions in this blog post aren’t based on science rather they’re based off of a few ideas / rough estimates. It’s important to keep in mind that for proper heat load calculations, a manual J load calculation needs to be conducted by a contractor.

Posted by & filed under HVAC.

The heat of summer is here, but you can protect yourself and your family by ensuring the efficiency of the home’s AC unit. An air conditioner that’s ready to break down should be taken care of right away, so you’re not forced to suffer through a sweltering season. Below are three signs that you need an air conditioning tune-up from a trained technician.

Higher Utility Bills

Check your power bill for an increase over last year’s rates. A unit that’s overdue for an adjustment or cleaning will work too hard, using too much power and raising your monthly utility bill. The longer you let your system go un-maintained, the more you’ll pay each month. On average, an improperly maintained system works 20% harder than one that’s been recently tuned up.

Diminished Cooling Power

If the unit’s putting out air that’s warmer than normal and you’re turning the thermostat lower to keep things cool, the AC needs a checkup to determine whether anything’s wrong. In most cases, a little fine-tuning is all that’s needed to get your unit running at peak efficiency.

Short Cycling

This term refers to a unit that turns off after running briefly, stopping before the cooling cycle is completed. Short cycling can occur for a variety of reasons, from a refrigerant leak to dirty coils. By getting service done right away, you can prevent short cycling from causing a significant energy drain.

You don’t really need to look for trouble signs to know when it’s time for an AC tune up. In most cases, AC units should receive yearly maintenance to run efficiently and meet their life expectancy. Even if there’s no apparent sign of AC issues, it may be time to call for maintenance.

Questions? Give Barrett & Sons Inc. a call today at (210) 659-5801. We complete air conditioning services in Alamo Heights TX.

Posted by & filed under HVAC.

As the temperatures in our area continue to rise, many of our customers are noticing the impact the summer heat is having on their utility bills. While running your air conditioning system is crucial to keeping room temperatures at a comfortable level, there are some effective steps homeowners can take to alleviate the stress on their units, which, in turn, may help reduce the impact air conditioning use will have on their wallets.

Step 1: Get the Air Moving

Moving air can give the impression that the air temperature is lower than your thermostat actually reads. Because most fans require much less electricity to operate than your typical forced air system, running your fan while concurrently running your air conditioner will ultimately reduce your energy usage, IF you set your thermostat a few degrees higher. It may seem counter-intuitive, but the results will be apparent on next month’s power bill.

Step 2: Prevent Leakage

Another great way to keep your indoor temperatures at a comfortable level is to prevent excessive air leakage. An inexpensive way to keep the cool air from escaping your home is to replace old, worn out, or missing weather stripping between movable elements of your home, such as windows and doors. Caulk is another inexpensive, yet appropriate sealant for preventing air exchange within fixed elements of your home.

Step 3: Prevent Heat From Building Up

As the summer progresses, you may find that not only are you battling the heat outside, but you are battling heat inside your home as well. Cooking and baking contribute to the heat that builds up in the kitchen. Taking hot showers and running hair dryers contribute to the heat that builds up in the bathrooms. As your air conditioner struggles to keep up, your home’s energy use skyrockets. Keep the air inside your home cooler by taking shorter, cooler showers, and blow drying hair on a low setting. That pot roast and those homemade cookies can wait for cooler weather.

These simple, yet cost-effective ideas can help keep your home cool, and keep your hard-earned money exactly where it belongs: your wallet.

To learn more about how you can improve your energy consumption, give Barrett & Sons Inc. a call today at (210) 659-5801. We’re air conditioning specialists in Bulverde, TX.

 

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The high temperatures in Texas can make for some pretty uncomfortable summers, but did you know that it’s more than just the temperature that contributes to that hot and sticky feeling? It’s the humidity!

The humidity level represents the amount of water vapor that’s in the air, and needless to say, when the air is hot outside, the water vapor will be too! High levels of humidity can leave you feeling like you’re walking through steam on an especially hot day. The last thing you’ll want is to feel this way inside of your own home, and it’s important to know that some air conditioning systems combat humidity more efficiently than others. Not sure where your system falls on the list? Keep reading to learn more about humidity control and home comfort!

Have you had days where no matter how low you set your thermostat, you can’t get your home to a comfortably cool temperature? It’s likely that your system is running in overdrive trying to remove the humidity from the air, but it’s not able to handle the job! Your air conditioning system will do its best to remove the moisture and heat from the air, but if your system is older or not properly fitted for your home, it’s going to have to work longer and harder and potentially still not deliver the results that you’re hoping for. When your system is forced to work this hard to cool your home, it raises your utility bills and speeds up the process of wear and tear that will cost you in maintenance repairs in the long run, assuming you won’t have to replace your entire system!

If you’re finding that your air conditioning system doesn’t cool the way it used, it might be struggling to remove the hot air from your home. A few telltale signs that your home is too humid are moist-feeling surfaces, a musty smell and foggy windows. Do any of these sound familiar? If so, it’s time to invest in an air conditioning system designed to control temperature AND humidity!

While all air conditioning and cooling systems will, to an extent, control for humidity, there are systems out there that control humidity separately from heating and cooling. These systems will operate even when your home does not need to be heated or cooled, making them an intuitive and energy efficient option. It also takes the guess work out for you of trying to figure out why your home isn’t reaching the temperature you’ve set it to. A system that keeps your home at the proper level of humidity is going to save you in energy costs, keep the interior of your home and furniture in better condition, and save you money in AC service and repair over time.

Interested in learning more about a humidity sensing system? We’re air conditioning specialists working in Converse, TX, and we’d be happy to help! Give us a call today at (210) 659-5801 or visit our website to learn about all of the intuitive systems we install and service!

Posted by & filed under HVAC, Indoor Air Quality.

Spring is in the air! Spring is an exciting time for most; the weather is beautiful and everything is starting to bloom. The problem is, if you’re an allergy sufferer, spring can mean itchy eyes, runny noses and constant sneezing! With pollen all around us, being outside can cause some pretty severe allergy symptoms, but you shouldn’t have to experience this in your own home! Good air filtration and indoor air quality controls can make all the difference when it comes to fighting allergies in your home.

Keeping a clean home to prevent dust and pollen from accumulating is really important this time of year, but you’ll find that no matter how often you dust you still may be bothered by allergies! As your HVAC system brings in air from outside, it likely comes as no surprise that air pollutants are making their way in as well. The best way to combat this is with an air filtration system. An air filtration system will prevent dust, dirt, and pollen from accumulating in your system and circulating throughout your home.

In addition to keeping allergy symptoms at bay, investing in an air filtration system will also help your HVAC system to run more efficiently! Pollen and other pollutants clog your system and hinder air movement, which forces your system to work harder in order to circulate throughout your home. A filtration system will help your system to run smoother, and save you money on utility bills and repair costs over time!

A good filtration system can help to alleviate allergy symptoms, keep your system running efficiently, and improve the health and quality of the air in your home. Remember that during this time of year it’s especially important to ensure that you are changing your air filters regularly.

To learn more about how you can improve your indoor air quality or to sign up for an air quality inspection, give Barrett & Sons Inc. a call today at (210) 659-5801. We’re an indoor air quality company in Bulverde, TX.