Your questions answered: HVAC FAQs.

Quality Refrigeration in Baltimore can answer all your HVAC-related questions. Before you get on the phone, check to see if we already responded to your question online. If you don’t see your question on the list or want more information on a subject, give us a call at 410-355-6010. Our experts can give you the information you’re looking for in a jiffy.

Why is regular maintenance important?

Like any product you want to keep in good shape, HVAC equipment requires proper care in order to give you the greatest benefits. Trained experts can service your heating and cooling products to make sure they’re working at their maximum potential and help prevent more expensive repairs in the middle of the hottest or coldest months of the year.

What is two-stage heating?

With two-stage heating, furnaces may work on two different levels: high and low. Since you can heat your home on the low setting a majority of the time, a two-stage furnace can work longer and more efficiently. Two-stage heating also operates more quietly than traditional furnaces and can give you more even heat distribution and fewer temperature swings.

How does Precise Comfort™ technology work?

Precise Comfort™ technology is an operating and control system used in Lennox furnaces. The technology can automatically adjust heat by increments as small as 1 percent, boosting energy efficiency and helping you experience precise comfort.

How will my new furnace work differently from my old one?

Modern furnaces are developed with a number of innovative features older furnaces don’t have. Today’s heating systems provide more even heating and are better at regulating airflow. Although the air coming out of your vents may seem cooler than your old furnace, the airflow is much better and more efficient.

Another benefit of modern furnaces is their ability to integrate with other HVAC products as part of a high-efficiency whole home comfort system. When combined with a high-efficiency air conditioner, furnace blowers can more easily accommodate add-on cooling. Other innovations, such as Precise Comfort™ technology and variable speed motors, will help your furnace operate more efficiently and quieter than ever.

How can I reduce my energy costs?

Heating and cooling makes up a large portion of your monthly utility bill. Purchasing HVAC equipment with high efficiency ratings, such as SEER for air conditioners and AFUE for furnaces, is a simple step that can go a long way in decreasing energy output. Beyond these ratings, also consider:

  • Routine maintenance – regularly having a pro tune-up your equipment will keep it running at its highest potential.
  • Adding a zoning system – by focusing your heating and cooling on the rooms you use most frequently, you won’t have to pay to heat or cool areas of your home that aren’t used regularly.
  • Installing a programmable thermostat – the Department of Energy estimates that a programmable thermostat can reduce heating costs by up to 35 percent and cooling costs by up to 25 percent. Leave it up to your thermostat to turn down the heat when you’re away and go back to your preferred temperature when you’re home.

Why should I buy from Lennox?

There are various reasons to go with Lennox, but the top three are:

  • Lennox is a name you know and trust – known throughout the world for quality HVAC products, you can rest assured Lennox will provide you with high quality equipment.
  • Innovative and high quality products – Lennox has been on the leading edge of innovation in the heating and cooling industry for years. High quality furnaces, air conditioners and home comfort systems include innovative features to help your home stay more comfortable and energy efficient.
  • Reputation of excellence – high quality products are not the only arena Lennox excels in. Lennox dealers, like Quality Refrigeration, give you high quality service at all times, from your first consultation to your routine maintenance appointments.

What can I do to improve my home’s indoor air quality?

Strategies to boost your indoor air quality can be as basic as vacuuming your home to something as large as adding a new ventilation system. Overall, good IAQ has four strategies:

  • Eliminate – decrease the pollutants floating in your air by cleaning your home routinely, particularly vacuuming carpet, washing linens and safely storing household chemicals.
  • Ventilate – make sure your home is well-ventilated to move airborne pollutants out of your home. In newer homes, well-done insulation will hinder ventilation, so Lennox systems such as the Healthy Climate® ventilation system can help. These systems bring fresh air from outside into your home and direct the stale air out.
  • Clean – correct air filters, such as our Healthy Climate® air filters, will make certain the smallest particles don’t get through and are let out into your home. Germicidal lights can kill the germs that do make it through, and purification systems like the PureAir™ will help destroy odors and chemical vapors.
  • Monitor – keep your humidity levels in check with a programmable thermostat. High temperatures and humidity levels can increase concentrations of mold, mildew and germs. A programmable thermostat will make certain that your home is comfortable without letting humidity run rampant.

How does an air conditioner work?

It may come as a surprise that air conditioners don’t technically make your home cooler; they actually remove the hot air and direct it outside. This hot air is pushed across a refrigerant coil on the indoor unit and then is sent to the outdoor unit where it is released. Your air conditioner transfers as much hot air outside as is necessary to reach the temperature you have set on your thermostat.

What is the minimum energy efficiency standard for air conditioners in my state?

Minimum energy efficiency standards can vary by geographic location. Additionally, air conditioners, heat pumps and packaged units made after Jan. 1, 2015, have higher minimum efficiency levels than equipment manufactured prior to that date. The team at Quality Refrigeration can help you figure out the minimum requirements for Baltimore, let you know if your current products meets those requirements or help you find a replacement air conditioner that does.

What size equipment do I need for my home?

Since equipment size needs are different for every home, the best way to determine the right size equipment for your home is to have a technician from Quality Refrigeration come out to perform load calculation tests. The tests take factors such as square footage, insulation value and amount, and more into account to determine your home’s individual HVAC equipment needs.

What is two-stage cooling?

When a cooling system uses two-stage cooling, it means that there are two levels of operation. This lets the system work most effectively since there is one level for milder weather and one for harsher weather that demands the system work harder. Two-stage cooling also enables more even temperatures so you don’t experience extreme differences in temperature. Aside from better efficiency, other benefits of two-stage cooling include quieter operation and improved humidity control.

Why is my system freezing up?

Your system could be freezing up for a variety of reasons, but the most frequent are dirty filters, low refrigerant, a dirty evaporator coil and/or a faulty blower motor. Changing a filter is something you, the homeowner, can take care of; however, you’ll need to call the professionals at Quality Refrigeration at 410-355-6010 for other problems or if you have other questions or concerns.

What is the best thermostat to use for my cooling system?

Quality Refrigeration carries a number of great thermostat options for your HVAC systems. The best thermostat for you will depend on a variety of variables, such as whether you want one that’s programmable or not. No matter what kind of thermostat you’d like – or if you’re in the market for something that can fit with a home automation system – call Quality Refrigeration to hear about which thermostats you can choose from. Our team will help you find one that’s best for your system, your family’s needs and your budget.

What is a heat pump?

A heat pump can tackle both your home’s heating and cooling needs, offering you one HVAC system that can be used year-round. Throughout the warmer months, heat pumps act like an air conditioner, capturing the hot air from inside your home and moving it outside; in the cooler months, this process is reversed. Heat pumps can be very energy efficient and may produce two to three times more heat than the energy needed for the process.

When replacing the outdoor unit, should the indoor unit also be replaced?

At Quality Refrigeration, we do recommend replacing both your indoor and outdoor units at the same time because:

  • Nowadays, outdoor systems are built to work with their matching indoor system for maximum efficiency. When you replace one system but not the other, you may not see the same energy savings as if you had replaced them together.
  • Thanks to technological advancements, newer systems mean increased efficiency. This is true for HVAC products as well. While the advancements focus on improved heating and cooling efficiency, they also include benefits such as better air handling, filtering and noise reduction.
  • If your heating and cooling systems are over 10 years old, they need to be replaced. Older models have outdated technology that is likely costing you money due to poor efficiency. So by replacing your indoor system at the same time as your outdoor equipment, both your systems will provide better energy efficiency that helps you lower your energy bills and keep your home more comfortable.