How to Avoid Bad Luck With Your HVAC System

hvac preventative maintenance

Tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day! While you won’t find a pot of gold in your home HVAC system, keep these tips in mind to prevent unfortunate breakdowns and costly repairs:

 

  • Change your air filters. About 80% of all HVAC breakdowns could be avoided by simply cleaning or replacing your air filters each month. Dirty air filters limit fresh air intake, leading to increased wear-and-tear and higher energy bills.

 

  • Keep surrounding areas clear. Heating and cooling equipment should have at least three feet of clearance in all directions. If debris is too close to your A/C condenser, it cannot sufficiently release heat. If debris is too close to your furnace, it could catch fire.

 

  • Test your carbon monoxide alarm. Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas that is produced by most heating equipment. Since it is odorless and colorless, the only way to detect carbon monoxide is with an electronic sensor. Test the batteries in your sensor once a month to keep your family safe.

 

  • Schedule a tune up. During an HVAC tune up, a professional technician will clean and inspect the various components of your heating/cooling system. This can help prevent breakdowns, lower your energy bills, and extend the lifespan of your equipment.

 

  • Refer to your owner’s manual. Depending on the make and model of your HVAC system, additional preventative maintenance may be required to keep it running at peak capacity. Refer to your owner’s manual for instructions specific to your model.

 

If you live in Fairfax County VA, look no further than the Air Treatment Company for all of your home heating and cooling needs. We offer professional HVAC repairs, installations, tune up services, and more. Contact us online to schedule your service, or call (703) 938-0550.

 

5 Ways to Love Your Home Heating System

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Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, which means showing affection to the one that keeps you warm when nobody else would. We are talking about your heating system, of course!

 

The furnace is the unsung hero of the home, working around the clock to keep a comfortable climate during the winter months. Here are five things you can do to show it some love this Valentine’s Day.

 

1. Change your air filters each month.

Air filters are responsible for keeping dust and debris out of your furnace. When these filters become dirty, your furnace has to work harder to heat your home. This results in increased wear-and-tear and a shorter lifespan. For best results, clean or replace your filters every month.

 

2. Clean your air vents and the areas around them.

The air vents are the lungs of your heating system; you want to make sure they are clean. Dust that accumulates in these vents doesn’t just limit airflow, it can spread around your home and compromise air quality. Experts recommend having your air ducts professionally cleaned every 3-5 years.

 

3. Don’t crank up the heat too much.

On a chilly day, you might be tempted to crank the thermostat until it can’t go any higher. While you may have the cozy home you desire, it comes at a price – mainly higher energy bills and an increased workload on your furnace. Consider putting on a sweater instead of blasting the heat.

 

4. Supplement with your ceiling fans.

Did you know that ceiling fans can help keep you warm? By setting your blades to rotate in a clockwise direction, warm air that gathers at your ceiling will be pushed back down into the room. This is a cost-effective way to warm up that many homeowners aren’t aware of.

 

5. Have a professional tune-up.

There is no better way to give your heating system some TLC than by having it professionally tuned up. An annual tune-up can lower your energy bills, extend the lifespan of your unit, improve heating capacity, and more. Some HVAC manufacturers even require it for their warranty.

 

Trust the heating experts at the Air Treatment Company to keep you warm this winter. We offer home heating system repairs, installations, and maintenance services to Fairfax County, Virginia and the surrounding areas. Contact us online to schedule a service, or call (703) 938-0550.

Should I Repair or Replace my HVAC System?

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When heating and cooling breakdowns occur, homeowners are left with a choice: should they repair the broken unit, or replace it altogether? This is a tough decision, and one that millions of people must make every year.

Fortunately for you, the pros at Air Treatment Company are here to ease the burden. We have more than 50 years of experience repairing and replacing HVAC systems across Virginia, here is our expert advice on what you should do:

Repair your HVAC system if:

  • Your unit is less than 10 years old. If your HVAC system is less than ten years old, parts are more easily accessible, and can be purchased for cheaper. This leads to more affordable repairs.
  • You are moving soon. Planning on selling your home? Investing in a new HVAC system won’t provide you with a good return on investment.
  • It is a cheap fix. The 50% rule: if the repair is less than half the price of a new unit, you are better off getting it fixed.

Replace your HVAC system if:

  • Your unit is old enough to drive. The average lifespan of a HVAC system is roughly 15 years. If yours is older than that, it likely does not meet modern-day standards and you are better off investing in a new one.
  • Your energy-efficiency is steadily dropping. Does your energy bill keep rising, even though your thermostat has remained consistent? A failing HVAC system could be to blame and should be replaced.
  • You have had repeat breakdowns. Do you have your HVAC technician on speed dial? Save yourself from spending more than you need to on frequent repairs, and put your money towards a new system.

Whether you want to repair or replace your HVAC system, look no further than the technicians at the Air Treatment Company to get the job done. We can repair any make or model of heating or cooling system, or install a brand new one properly sized for your home. If you live in Fairfax County VA, give us a call at (703) 938-0550.

10 Ways to Keep Warm for Less This Winter

 

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Whether you are looking to save money or save the environment, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce energy usage this winter:

 

  • Dial down the thermostat. Every degree you lower your thermostat can reduce your heating bill by 5%.

 

  • Dress in your cozy clothes. Wearing your coziest sweater or robe around the house will help you forget you just turned down your thermostat.

 

  • Invest in a programmable thermostat. With a programmable thermostat, you can automatically set your heating system to use less energy when the house is empty or everyone is asleep.

 

  • Seal air leaks around the house. If your house isn’t properly sealed, your money could be going out the window – literally.

 

  • Take advantage of free sunlight. The sun is the world’s largest source of heat, and it’s completely free! Use it to your advantage by keeping your blinds open during the daytime.

 

  • Switch your ceiling fan blades. Set your ceiling fan blades to rotate clockwise; this will push warm air that gathers near the ceiling back down into the room.

 

  • Humidify your home. Sometimes, adding a little bit of moisture into the air is all it takes to make your home feel 5-10 degrees warmer.

 

  • Upgrade to an Energy Star-certified HVAC system. Some units can pay for themselves in just a few years with the energy savings they provide.

 

  • Change your air filters every month. Dirty furnace filters can compromise air quality, increase energy consumption, and make your HVAC system more likely to break down.

 

  • Tune up your heating system. The filter isn’t the only thing in your furnace that needs routine cleaning. A professional tune-up can keep your heating system operating at peak capacity all winter long.

If you live in Fairfax County, Virginia, trust the home heating experts at Air Treatment Company to help keep you warm this winter without going over budget. We offer furnace installations, repairs, and maintenance services to homeowners in Fairfax, Vienna, Reston, McLean, and the surrounding area. Contact us online to get started, or call (703) 938-0550.

8 Easy Ways to Save Money This Winter

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Staying warm doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Use these eight tips from Air Treatment Company to keep cozy all winter long without breaking the bank.

 

  • Turn down the thermostat. Every degree you lower your thermostat can save you up to 5% on your heating bill. Experiment to see which temperature is comfortable for your family, and don’t be afraid to drop it a few more degrees before climbing into bed each night.
  • Change your furnace’s air filter. A dirty air filter allows dust and debris to enter your furnace, forcing it to work harder. For best results, clean or replace your air filter every month during the winter season.
  • Find and seal air leaks. Air leaks allow cold drafts to enter your home, and warm air to escape it. Luckily, most air leaks are easy to detect and can quickly be sealed using weatherstripping or caulk.
  • Close your fireplace damper. Your chimney damper should always remain closed when your fireplace is not in use. An open damper is like leaving a wide open window in your home, allowing warm air to escape through the chimney.
  • Upgrade your insulation. Insulation keeps the warm air in your home and the cold air out of it. Scheduling a professional energy audit is the easiest way to find out if your home’s current insulation levels are adequate.
  • Turn down your water heater. Most water heaters are set to 140º by default, but there is no need for them to be this hot. Turning the thermostat down to 120º can save you money and help prevent burning accidents.
  • Use energy-efficient holiday lights. A festive lighting display is sure to spike your holiday spirit, but it can also spike your energy bill. The best way to deck the halls in your home is to use only energy-efficient LED bulbs, and turn off the lights before you go to bed.
  • Schedule a furnace tune up. During a tune up, a professional technician will inspect, clean, and replace the various components in your furnace. This not only helps cut back on energy consumption, it can also extend the lifespan of your heating system.

 

If you live in Fairfax County, Virginia, trust the home heating experts at Air Treatment Company to help you save money this winter. We offer energy-efficient heating system installations, repairs, tune up services, and more. Contact us online to get started or give us a call at (703) 938-0550.

Protect Your HVAC System With a Service Plan from Air Treatment Company

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We rely on our HVAC systems to keep us comfortable all year long, but when owners neglect to perform basic maintenance on their units, breakdowns may occur. If you live in Fairfax County, Virginia, the best way to keep your heating and cooling system in tip-top shape is with a maintenance plan from the experts at Air Treatment Company. Read below to learn more.

What are the benefits of an annual HVAC maintenance plan?

A professional heating and cooling service plan offers many benefits, such as:

  • Reduced energy consumption.

  • Extended equipment lifespan.

  • Enhanced home comfort.

  • Lower heating and cooling bills.

  • Fewer breakdowns.

  • Improved system reliability.

What service plans does Air Treatment Company offer?

We offer three different maintenance plans for our valued customers. They are:

Basic Maintenance Plan

This is our entry-level plan which covers two visits per year:

  • 15-point heating inspection

  • 15-point cooling inspection

Value Maintenance Plan

The Value Maintenance Plan is a step up from the basic package. It includes:

  • 15-point heating inspection

  • 15-point cooling inspection

  • Access to emergency service

  • Priority breakdown service

  • Discounted rates on repairs

Preferred Plan Plus

The Preferred Plan Plus is our premium package, and provides the best possible customer experience. Perks of the preferred plan include:

  • 15-point heating inspection

  • 15-point cooling inspection

  • Access to emergency service

  • Priority breakdown service

  • Discounted rates on repairs

  • Parts and labor included on most repairs

Other frequently asked questions about our service plans

What makes or models do you service?

Our professional technicians are licensed and trained to service any make or model of HVAC equipment.

Can’t I perform maintenance myself?

Many homeowners can perform some basic maintenance on their heating and cooling system, such as replacing the air filter. However, most people lack the specialized tools and knowledge needed to complete a thorough maintenance inspection.

How many visits are included with a service plan?

Two visits per year – once for your heating system and once for your cooling system.

How much is each service plan?

Since no two heating and cooling systems are alike, our HVAC service plans are priced according to your home and unit. Call (703) 938-0550 to get started with a free quote.

Where can I learn more about Air Treatment Company’s service plans?

If you are looking for more information about Air Treatment Company’s heating and cooling maintenance plans, click here. If you wish to get started with a free quote, simply contact us online or call (703) 938-0550.

What You Need to Know About Your Furnace Filter

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Did you know that 8 out of every 10 furnace breakdowns are caused by a dirty air filter?

It’s true. Air filters are one of the most important components of our home heating systems, yet many people do not give them the attention they deserve. In this article, the HVAC experts at Air Treatment Company will explain why the air filter is so important, and what you can do to prevent future problems.

What does the furnace air filter do?

Contrary to popular belief, the air filter in your furnace does not clean the air in your home. It is instead designed to catch dust, dirt, and other airborne particles, and trap them before they can enter your furnace’s blower fan.

Without a clean air filter, this debris can accumulate in the blower fan, hindering your furnace’s energy-efficiency and leading to premature breakdowns.

Different types of filters

There are many different types of air filters available for your furnace. Some of the most popular kinds include:

  • Fiberglass. Cheap and disposable. Good at catching lint and dust, but struggle to filter out smaller particles, such as pollen.

  • Pleated. These filters are also disposable. They tend to have large surface areas, which allows them to capture particles more effectively than fiberglass.

  • Washable. Less common and more expensive than disposable types, but only require replacement every few years. These filters can simply be cleaned under running water.

  • Electrostatic. Can be reusable or disposable. Electrostatic filters are specially charged to attract airborne particles, making them the most effective type of filter.

Which filter is best?

Filters can also be vary by size, frame material, and performance rating. Which filter is best for you depends on the model of your heating system. Refer to your owner’s manual to see which filter the manufacturer recommends.

No matter what type of filter you use, the most important thing is that you keep it clean. Depending on the size and type of your filter, you may need to change it as often as every month. It may sound like a hassle, but this quick chore can significantly lower your energy costs and extend the lifespan of your heating system.

Maintaining your HVAC filter should be a relatively simple process, but if you are unsure about where to begin, the experts at the Air Treatment Company are here to help. If you live in Fairfax County, Virginia, call us for all of your HVAC needs at (703) 938-0550.

Portable Space Heater Safety Tips

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Portable space heaters are a convenient source of heat for your home, but they can also pose a significant fire hazard. In fact, space heaters cause hundreds of deaths, thousands of injuries, and millions of dollars in property damage every year.

Use these portable space heater safety tips from the Electrical Safety Foundation International to keep warm and stay safe this winter:

  • Check to see that your space heater was tested by a recognized laboratory before purchasing.

  • Read the manufacturer’s recommendations and warning labels carefully before using.

  • Turn off the heater when you go to bed or leave the room.

  • Place the heater on a solid, flat surface. Never use a space heater on a carpet.

  • Do not use space heaters in wet areas, such as the kitchen or bathroom.

  • Purchase a space heater with an automatic shut-off so it will turn off if tipped over.

  • Inspect the power cord for damage or frayed edges before using.

  • Plug power cords directly into an outlet, never into an extension cord.

  • Have a three-foot “safety zone” around the heater and keep it clear of furniture, bedding, curtains, flammable materials, pets, and children.

  • Install smoke alarms on every floor of the home and test them at least once per month.

  • Always unplug and safely store your space heater when not in use.

It is important to note that portable electric heaters should only be used as a supplemental source of heat for cold or drafty areas in yourhome. If your home heating system isn’t doing its job, consider having it replaced. A brand new furnace can save you energy, keep all areas in your home warm, and is much safer than a portable space heater.

If you live in Fairfax County,Virginia, trust Air Treatment Company with all of your home heating needs. We offer a wide variety of services to keep you warm this winter, including furnace installations, repairs, and tune-ups. Give us a call at (703) 938-0550 to get started.

5 Ways to Warm Up Without Touching the Thermostat

inexpensive ways to keep warm | heating replacement mclean | heating replacement vienna | air treatment company

Staying warm this season doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Use these tips from the experts at Air Treatment Company to make your home feel warmer without touching your thermostat…

Bundle Up!

When the weather gets cold, dress for the occasion. Putting on your coziest sweater won’t cost you a dime, but it is guaranteed to keep you warm.

Humidify

We all know that high humidity can make a warm summer day feel ten degrees hotter, so why not use this same logic in your home? Investing in a humidifier can make your home feel warmer, and prevent your skin, nose, and throat from drying out.

Use the Sun

The sun is the world’s biggest source of heat, and best of all – it’s totally free. Open your curtains during the daytime to let the sun naturally warm up your house, especially on the south-facing windows. Just make sure to close the curtains at night to minimize heat loss.

Switch Your Ceiling Fans

Most of us use fans to keep cool, but did you know they can also warm you up? Setting your ceiling fan blades to rotate clockwise will push warm air that has gathered at the ceiling back down into the room.

Stop Drafts

If you have drafty spots in your home, your money could be going right out the window – literally. Use caulk, weatherstripping, or a draft stop to plug air leaks around the home. This will help keep you warm and could save you up to 15% or more on your energy bills.

Fairfax County residents can trust the professionals at Air Treatment Company to keep them warm all winter long. We offer a variety of heating services to Virginia homes such as furnace repairs, tune-ups, installations, and more. If you live in Vienna, Arlington, Fairfax, or the surrounding area, give us a call at (703) 938-0550.

5 Ways to Spruce Up Your Decorative Fireplace

Fireplaces are often referred to as the heart of the home, especially during the colder months. Even if your fireplace is purely decorative, it can still be a focal point – just follow these tips from Air Treatment Company.

Pretend it’s real.

The most popular option for nonfunctional fireplaces is to decorate them as if they were functional. Fool guests by furnishing your fireplace with real logs (that will never be burned) and tools (that will never be used) that accent the theme of your home.

Install a decorative screen.

Fireplace screens can be ordinary, or they can be extraordinary. Forget the traditional mesh wire screen and opt for something a little more artistic – it could be just what you need to turn your empty fireplace from an eyesore to an eye-catcher.

Use it as a display box.

People’s eyes are naturally drawn to fireplace openings. Use this to your advantage by putting something on display. Paintings, statues, candles, family heirlooms, and houseplants can all add a personal touch to your home.

Turn it into a bookshelf.

You can never have enough storage space in your home, so use this opportunity to add more. Building a shelf or two across your fireplace is extremely easy, and can open the door for a wide variety of decoration possibilities.

Make your very own minibar.

Always wanted a bar in your home? Turn your dream into a reality with the help of your decorative fireplace. Hang up a bottle rack and line the mantle with cocktail glasses, shakers, bottle openers, and other bar essentials.

Air Treatment Company provides home heating and cooling services to Fairfax County, Virginia. If you live in Fairfax, Arlington, Vienna, or the surrounding area, give us a call at (703) 938-0550.