Atlantic Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, Inc. Blog

The Benefits of Using an Energy Recovery Ventilator in Dover

November 10th, 2014

Today’s heating and cooling systems can be extremely efficient, using modern technology to produce the same level of home comfort you’re accustomed to at a significantly lower monthly cost than those created 10 or 20 years ago. It’s not difficult to see the improvements over the years. Just compare the annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) of today’s heating systems (which must meet minimum efficiency requirements of 80%) to those built just a couple of decades ago (many of which were closer to 50%).

Today’s heating and air conditioning systems can save a lot of money, but only if the conditions in your home are just right. That’s why we keep our homes sealed up tightly when we run our heaters or air conditioners: to keep the heat generated by the heating system from escaping outdoors and to keep heat out in the summer.

Unfortunately, all of this weatherproofing and sealing means little ventilation in the home. This makes the indoor air feel stale and uncomfortable. The lack of ventilation may also allow moisture to build up in the home and can keep you running your HVAC system for longer, costing you more in energy spending every month. These are the reasons many homeowners choose to install energy recovery ventilators. These systems pull fresh air from the outside to move into your indoor air handler or directly into your home and to exhaust humid, stale air from the home back to the outdoors. Here are some of the reasons you may choose to install an energy recovery ventilator.

  • Enhanced Indoor Air Quality: One of the main reasons people choose energy recovery ventilators is the improvement in air quality. An ERV provides you with fresh, filtered air from improved ventilation.
  • Moisture Control: An ERV transfers moisture from the indoor air t the air exhausting outdoors. This means more tolerable humidity levels for increased comfort, which could also help prevent the development of mold and mildew.
  • Reduce Energy Costs: Finally, you can save on energy costs with professional energy recovery ventilation installation. This type of system is one of the only ways to ventilate your home without sacrificing the energy efficiency of your HVAC system.

Want to learn more about professional installation of energy recovery ventilators in Dover? Call Atlantic Refrigeration to speak with an indoor air quality expert today!

3 Common Commercial Heating Repairs in Georgetown

November 3rd, 2014

Having a comfortable commercial space is critical to your business’s success. Multiple problems can develop with a commercial heating system, which is why it’s important to hire professionals in Georgetown who specialize in commercial heating services for all of your commercial heating repairs. Atlantic Refrigerant is available 24/7, so if you experience problems with your commercial heating, call us immediately.

Common Commercial Heating Repairs

Here are 3 of the more common heating issues that we see at Atlantic Refrigeration:

Fan Problems

The heat in your system can’t be blown into your business space without the blower fan. The fan in a commercial system is large; the core components of the fan are the fan blades, fan motor, belt and wiring. Wires can fray and corrode with regular usage, which can cause issues with the electrical flow; this can result in intermittent operation or a loss of operation of the fan. Fan belts also wear down with usage causing them to loosen or break. Lastly, motor issues can develop. All of these issues can affect how the fan turns, which will reduce the airflow in your system.

Faulty Ductwork

The ductwork in your commercial heating system is an integral part of your heating; without it, the warm air won’t be delivered to your business space. Ductwork is durable, but it can suffer from wear and tear. Cracks, holes and disconnections can develop, resulting in significant heat loss. Repairing commercial ductwork takes skill and expertise, as the ductwork system is complex, so it’s best to call a trained professional.

Electrical Issues

A commercial heating system runs on a significant amount of electricity. There are a few areas where electrical problems can develop, and one of the common problems we see occurs with the system’s capacitors. There are two types of capacitors: a start capacitor and a run capacitor. Each helps the motors in your heating system run, and when one malfunctions, it can create system-wide issues.

Commercial heating repairs should only be handled by well trained and knowledgeable professionals. For expert commercial heating service call Atlantic Refrigeration today.

How Often Should I Schedule Boiler Maintenance in Lewes?

October 27th, 2014

Your boiler is a complex device that works hard during the winter months to keep you warm and comfortable. It is not unusual for it to accrue wear and tear each season, including the accumulation of dirt and dust. Operating your boiler season after season without scheduling maintenance can reduce the energy efficiency of the system by up to 5% each year. This is one of the reasons why it’s so important to schedule boiler maintenance in Lewes. The cold weather is coming, so don’t hesitate to schedule maintenance with your Atlantic Refrigeration technician today.

Why Schedule Maintenance?

There are several important reasons to schedule maintenance for your boiler:

  • Better energy efficiency – your boiler was made to operate at a certain efficiency level. When the system and its components are worn down from seasonal operation, it can be difficult for your system to operate as efficiently as it should. During a maintenance appointment, components are cleaned, adjusted and lubricated, allowing them to operate as they should. This helps your system retain its original energy efficiency.
  • Prevents repairs – during a maintenance appointment, your system undergoes a thorough inspection. This inspection allows the technician to look for and detect any existing or developing issues with your boiler. Small issues, like frayed wiring, will be repaired during the maintenance appointment; larger issues will be reported to you so that you can schedule an appointment for repair. Resolving potential and existing problems immediately can help prevent repairs down the road.
  • Less wear on your system – a system that operates under stress for a long period of time due to a lack of regular maintenance can prematurely age. Properly maintaining your boiler keeps the system and its components in good working order, which helps prevent early aging.

How Often Is Maintenance Needed?

Ideally, maintenance should be scheduled bi-annually: before the heating season in the fall, and after it in the spring. However, if you can’t schedule maintenance bi-annually, it is strongly recommended that you schedule it annually, with the best time being in the fall season.

If it’s been more than 12 months since your last boiler maintenance in Lewes, call the boiler maintenance professionals at Atlantic Refrigeration today.

Why You Should Consider Zone Control for Your Heating System

October 20th, 2014

As we head toward cooler weather, you may already be thinking about how to more comfortably heat your home. One great way to achieve better comfort, and some other benefits, is by installing a zone heating system in Dover. Professional installation is important for any upgrade to your heating system, so make sure you call the trained professionals you can count on: Atlantic Refrigeration.

What Is a Zone Control System?

With a zone control system, your home is divided up into different zones, as designated by you, and each zone is given its own thermostat for temperature control. The system is comprised of a series of motorized dampers that are installed into the supply ducts of your ductwork, and the dampers are connected to a main control panel. The thermostats for each zone are also connected to the main control panel, which allows the dampers to open and close as needed to maintain the temperatures that are set in the different zones.

What Kinds of Properties Benefit from a Zone Control System?

Just about any type of home can benefit from a zone control system, but certain types of homes may find them particularly beneficial:

  • Homes with specialized architecture like floor-to-ceiling windows, vaulted ceilings or loft space
  • Multi-story homes
  • Homes with finished basements
  • Homes with multiple wings

What Are the Benefits of a Zone Control System?

  • Customized comfort – with a zone control system, you won’t have to worry about complaints regarding individual comfort or uneven heating.
  • Better energy efficiency – with a zone control system, you use only the heating you need. This can reduce your overall energy usage and save you money on monthly energy bills.
  • Less stress on your heating system – zone control can reduce your overall system usage, so there can be less stress put on your system when you install a zone control system.

A zone control system can give a level of control over your heating that you won’t be able to achieve with a single thermostat. Call Atlantic Refrigeration today.

Some Reasons to Schedule Duct Sealing Today

October 13th, 2014

One of the best ways to prepare for winter is to get your heating system ready to work – this also includes your ductwork. Ductwork has a long lifespan, typically 30 years or more, but that doesn’t mean it won’t need repair at some point. Faulty ductwork can cause several problems, and one of the best ways to reduce or eliminate these problems is to schedule duct sealing in Rehoboth Beach. With professional duct sealing, you can repair the holes and cracks in your system, bringing your ductwork back to optimal functioning. Call Atlantic Refrigeration today and schedule an appointment with one of our NATE-certified technicians.

What Is Duct Sealing?

When a technician seals your ducts, he/she uses a few tools to ensure that the seal lasts. Typical materials are mastic adhesive, professional-grade foil or fiberglass tape and metal bindings. When repairing holes and cracks, the technician will first cover the damaged area with mastic, which is a fibrous adhesive that hardens into a seal. Next, the technician will place a piece of professional-grade tape over the mastic to reinforce the seal. The mastic is allowed time to cure so that it can harden.

If a section of your ductwork has become disconnected from another, the technician will apply mastic to both ends, then join them and wrap them in a metal binding. The binding will be secured with sheet metal nails and the mastic will be allowed to cure.

Benefits of Duct Sealing

  • Improved indoor air quality – when you have cracks and holes in your ductwork, particles and contaminants can get into your air flow and are delivered directly into your living spaces. This can compromise the quality of your indoor air.
  • Improved energy efficiency – many homes with ducted heating and cooling systems experience a level of air loss, but faulty ductwork can account for up to 30% of the total air loss. Your HVAC system will compensate for any amount of air loss, so the higher the air loss, the more energy your system will need to compensate for the loss. By repairing these issues, you can restore your energy efficiency levels.
  • Less stress on your system – not only does your system use more energy when there is significant air loss, it also runs harder. This puts stress on your system that can cause premature aging and wear and tear.

Professional duct sealing in Rehoboth Beach can help improve your indoor air quality and energy efficiency.

Get ahead of winter energy costs this year and schedule an appointment with an Atlantic Refrigeration certified specialist today.

Question from Ocean City: How Are Geothermal Systems Installed?

October 6th, 2014

Investing in a geothermal heating and cooling system is one of the best ways to save money every month. Geothermal systems rely on the steady temperature underneath the surface of the earth to reliably heat or cool your home. These systems often require few repairs, and may save homeowners hundreds on cooling and heating costs every year. In fact, the cost of installation may be offset very quickly through monthly savings and local incentives. But while cost is an important factor many homeowners take into consideration when choosing a new system, others are more worried about the installation process. Let’s take a look at how geothermal heating and cooling works, as well as how it is installed.

How It Works

Geothermal heating and cooling systems are also known as geothermal heat pumps. Many homeowners use air source heat pumps, which can also provide both heating and air conditioning. In the summer, air source heat pumps uses refrigerant to absorb heat from the air in your home and release it outdoors. In the summer, the process is reversed, as heat from the outdoor air is distributed into your home. A geothermal heat pump uses a similar process, except heat is absorbed from or released into the earth via a water and refrigerant solution. Because the temperature underground does not change, it’s a more reliable source of heating and cooling, particularly in areas with harsh winter climates.

How It Is Installed

Many homeowners are most concerned about the installation process. The two main components of a geothermal heating and cooling system are the heat pump and the loop field. The heat pump is the indoor component, while the loop field is a set of coiled tubes buried under the ground. The technician buries a set of coiled tubes in the earth, generally in one of two ways.

For many homes, vertical loop field installation is the norm because it requires less space. This requires drilling deep into the ground, so it may be a more costly process than the alternative, horizontal loop field installation. Horizontal loop fields require a lot of outdoor space for installation as long trenches are dug into your property. However, no drilling is required, which generally makes it less costly. In fact, geothermal installation offers some benefits; because these tubes are buried underground, they are not exposed to the elements, which may mean fewer repairs.

To schedule geothermal heating system installation in Ocean City, MD call the geothermal experts at Atlantic Refrigeration today!

Why Homeowners Choose Radiant Systems in Georgetown

September 29th, 2014

Radiant heating systems are comprised of cables or pipes situated between the subfloor and the floor surface. A central heating unit pumps hot water through the system, causing heat to radiate upwards through the floor and into the room. Panels can also be installed in the walls for the same purpose. Radiant heating systems have been around for a while, and are installed in homes all across the country. Why should you consider installing such a system, though? Read on to discover the benefits of radiant heating over traditional forced air.

Air Quality

A forced air system works by taking air from inside your home, heating it, and then circulating it. Unfortunately, this means that the system is easily affected by the air quality around your home. If you have allergies, they can be exacerbated by allergens that have been trapped in your forced air system. Radiant heating completely avoids this by relying on water or electricity to transport heat.

Even Heating

When a forced air system blows hot air into a room, the air rises to the top of the room and lowers as it cools down. This creates an unevenly heated environment, where the upper part of the room may be warm but the lower part is still quite cold. This can be very uncomfortable, especially when your upper body is warm but you still have to walk across cold floors. By comparison, a radiant system transmits heat from the floor to the objects on top of it. These objects, like couches and chairs, then transmit that heat to the surrounding area. This causes the air itself to remain at a fairly constant temperature, while keeping you warm as you move around and sit on furniture.

Efficiency

As much as 30% of the energy devoted to heating is lost in forced air heating systems. This is often due to leaks in the ducts. Radiant systems, on the other hand, deliver almost all of their heating energy to the rooms in the house. This makes it far more efficient than forced air systems, saving you money on your utility bill.

If you are thinking about installing a radiant system in your home, call Atlantic Refrigeration today. No matter where you are in Georgetown, our experts can help you!

Warning Signs That You May Need Heating Repair

September 22nd, 2014

The colder weather hasn’t yet arrived in Delaware, but it won’t be long before you will need to turn on your home’s heating system once again for the winter weather. Is your heater prepared for the job? Now is the best time to find out if the system needs to have any repair work done and have the job taken care of before the outdoor thermometer starts to drop.

To find out if your heater requires repairs, take it for a “test drive” during a warm fall day and turn it on for an hour. We’ll list some of the warning signs to watch for during this time that will indicate you should call professionals in Dover, DE for heating repair. You can reach Atlantic Refrigeration any time of the day or night when you need skilled technicians to fix your heater in time for the colder weather.

Watch for these warnings from your heater

  • Strange noises: This is the most common indication that something is malfunctioning inside a heating system. Mechanical grinding and groaning, clicking, hissing, and rumbling are all noises that you shouldn’t hear coming from your home’s heater. Anything that sounds out of the ordinary should prompt you to call for repairs.
  • Odd smells from the vents: If you use a forced-air heater, such as a furnace or heat pump, then musty or burning odors wafting from the vents could mean a number of problems are afflicting the heater. Don’t try to diagnose the source on your own: leave this to the professionals.
  • Water leaks: This is specific to boilers. Look to see that no water is dripping from the pipes or pooling in the area around the tank.
  • Low airflow: Check on the air coming from the vents in each room. If the airflow feels lower than it should from one or more of the vents, then you should contact repair technicians to see what the problem might be.

Another sign to watch for when your heater begins to run regularly is an increase in your heating bills above what you normally expect to pay. This kind of cost spike usually means the system is experiencing a malfunction that is cutting into its efficiency.

Even if everything seems fine during the test run for your heating system, you still need to schedule a pre-season inspection and tune-up for it from professionals. Atlantic Refrigeration offers a comprehensive maintenance program that will make sure there are no impending repair issues with your heater, and also see that it is working at its most efficient.

Contact the heating professionals at Atlantic Refrigeration today to schedule a maintenance session or for any heating repair in Dover, DE you may need.

Why Install a Commercial Dehumidifier for Your Business?

September 15th, 2014

It’s important that your business space is comfortable, and this entails more than just the temperature. If the quality of your indoor air is lacking, it can affect you, your customers and your business. One of the ways indoor air quality can be compromised is with excess humidity. One of the best ways to help your air conditioner, your business and your customers is to improve your commercial indoor air quality in Ocean City, MD with a commercial dehumidifier. As with any upgrade to your system, it’s important to hire trained professionals for the work, and Atlantic Refrigeration has the trained and certified commercial technicians who can help improve your indoor air.

Reasons to Install a Commercial Dehumidifier

As we mentioned above, installing a dehumidifier to your commercial AC can help improve the indoor air quality in your business space, but there are several other reasons to consider installing a commercial dehumidifier:

  • Better health – mold, mildew, fungus and dust mites thrive at relative humidity levels above 60 percent. These types of micro-organisms can contribute to asthma attacks, allergy problems and other respiratory conditions, as well as damage to your products. The recommended humidity level for indoors is between 30 percent and 50 percent, levels a commercial dehumidifier can easily achieve.
  • Improved comfort – sometimes the dehumidifying function of your air conditioning system can’t keep up with demand. A commercial dehumidifier removes the excess moisture from the air before it can become part of your indoor air taking the extra load off your AC and allowing it to cool your business space as needed.
  • Energy savings – with a commercial dehumidifier, you don’t have to run the air conditioner more than necessary to cool things off; this helps save energy.

Don’t let your business space become uncomfortable due to excess humidity.

Call the professionals at Atlantic Refrigeration today and schedule an appointment with one of our experts to improve your commercial indoor air quality in Ocean City, MD.

Why Install a Dehumidifier in Seaford, DE?

September 8th, 2014

Your air conditioner is designed to remove both heat and humidity, but during periods of excessive humidity, it can be challenging for your AC to keep up. Humidity holds heat, so any time there is excess humidity in the air, it forces your air conditioner to work harder in order to cool your home. A great way to help your air conditioner and increase the comfort in your home is by adding a whole-home dehumidifier to your Seaford, DE property. With professional installation from Atlantic Refrigeration, you can dehumidify your home easily.

Signs You Have Too Much Humidity

You can feel humidity most of the time, but sometimes it can be difficult to spot excess humidity when the AC is running. Here are some common signs:

  • Sticky feeling on the skin
  • Stickiness on surfaces – counter tops, tables, etc.
  • Condensation on walls
  • Fogging windows
  • Cold, clammy feeling in your home

How Does a Whole-Home Dehumidifier Help?

When you install a dehumidifier into your existing HVAC system, the air in your home is dehumidified before it becomes part of your system’s air flow. The dehumidifier is part of your system, so it operates with the cycles of your air conditioner as well as independently. The process is seamless and easy.

What are the Benefits of a Dehumidifier?

Installing a dehumidifier has several benefits worth considering:

  • Better comfort – removing the excess moisture from your indoor air leaves the air dry and cool, and as a result, more comfortable.
  • Better health – excess humidity can exacerbate chronic respiratory problems like asthma, and allergens like dust mites, mold and mildew thrive in moist environments. Eliminating the excess moisture in your home can reduce or eliminate these problems.
  • Less stress on your system – as we mentioned above, when there is excess humidity, your air conditioner has to work harder. By reducing the amount of moisture in the air with a dehumidifier, you remove the extra stress on your AC.

A whole-home dehumidifier for your Seaford, DE home can help improve comfort, indoor air quality and the health of you, your family and your air conditioner.

If you are interested in what a dehumidifier can do for you and your home, call Atlantic Refrigeration today and schedule an appointment.