HVAC Equipment and Service

HVAC represents Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning. HVAC is most often utilized to describe a complete heating and cooling system comprising of the duct work, air filters, humidification controls, and registers.

Find the label on the outer surface of the system component for a manufacture date. Equipment less than five years old may have a warranty, but also may not subject to the make. Warranty terms and conditions differ by manufacturer and the installing company. Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts can figure out the warranty status of your heating and cooling system via System Inspection. We also offer a Platinum PLUSTM Protection Plan for home heating and air conditioning systems, regardless of the age of your equipment or manufacturer warranty status.

Yes. Noisy heating and cooling equipmentincrease sound pollution.While no financial savings are tied to a quieter home environment, the sound rating of a cooling system can have a significant effect on comfort and enjoyment of your Kitchener home. The sound level of an air conditioner or heat pump depends on many issues, such as how old and who manufactured the equipment, and the insulation of the compressor can increase the amount of noise it makes.

Although most heating and cooling systems made today are quieter now more than ever, it's a good  idea to compare sound ratings when assessing a new air conditioner or heat pump, particularly if the equipment location is near bedrooms or living rooms.

Besides the professional visual inspection included with our System Inspection, a Precision Tune-up also comes with a complete maintenance cleaning and lubrication of the heating or air conditioning equipment components. Learn more here about Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts’s Precision Tune-up steps . The expense of a tune-up changes depending on the season, and printable coupons with seasonal discounts on tune-ups can often be found on our Coupons page.

A Service Call fee is a charge for the expense associated with the time and travel to diagnose, inspect and deliver expert recommendations for a home's heating or air conditioning system by a certified professional technician. Coupons for the Service Call fee are often available on our web site, in the Yellow Pages, or by email when joining our Email Club at the bottom of this page.

A popping noise is a typically sign of an under-sized duct design. It may have to do with greater air flow than the duct work can handle. Have a qualified company analyze your home's ventilation system for proper design and make necessary recommendations. Improper duct work layout can be attributed to a number of ventilation and air quality problems, including: 

  1. loud popping
  2. higher energy consumption
  3. lowered life expectancy of the system
  4. uneven temperatures throughout your home
  5. damaged compressor in cooling season
  6. overheated unit in the winter
In addition, if your ductwork is incorrectly sized you may have other issues, such as leaky ducts and poor layout that impacts airflow. In humid environments this can promote mold growth within your ductwork.

 

The answer is, most likely yes. Here's why.

Matched System Design: All air conditioner and heat pump outdoor units are precisely intended to work with a matched indoor unit for ideal efficiency and performance. The effect of this matched equipment is a harmonized, top-performance team that ensures dependability and efficiency. Air conditioner and heat pump outdoor units may ”operate” with indoor units other than those for which they have been specially fabricated; however, the result would be a definite compromise in system performance.

Design Advances: Over time, indoor blower coil units have undergone numerous design advances — especially in the areas of air handling performance, filtering efficiency and operating sound levels. A new outdoor unit will also comprise the latest design advances.

Higher Cooling And Heating Efficiency: The cooling and/or heating efficiency ratings that are posted for an air conditioner or heat pump are based on their performance as matched systems. While changing only the outdoor unit may give you improved efficiency when looking at your old system, but efficiency will be lacking from what it was designed to be, and your savings will be lower than with a matched system.

Equipment Age: If an air conditioner or heat pump is 10 years old or more and is ready for replacement, the indoor unit is likely just as old and has been subjected to the same amount of wear and tear. Changing both units means you won't have to replace the indoor unit in a short time period… you'll have many years of efficient service with both units.

New Warranty: A new unit also gives you a new product warranty. Changing the indoor unit simultaneously with the outdoor unit results in peace of mind, knowing that the new warranty covers the entire system for the same period of time.

A Bargain: At first glance, replacing only the outdoor air conditioner or heat pump may appear to be a deal. But, when you consider the lower cooling and heating efficiencies, decreased reliability and high cost of ownership that results, it's not such a bargain. Replacing an entire system may cost more, but the result is efficiency, reliability and comfort for years into the future.

Similar to a value menu at many restaurants, charging a flat rate cost in place of an hourly charge provides more value for our customers because all costs are included, the pricing is up-front, and it does not change. Regardless of the cost of parts or the time it takes to complete the repairs, the price will not change. This reason is one of many why Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts is the most trusted name in Kitchener.

You probably wouldn't purchase a brand-new car and assume to not ever have to put air in the tires, change the oil and investigate any strange noises. Your home comfort system is the same as your car’s engine; it’s a mechanical device with a motor, electrical components... and even fuel. So it is critical to have routine maintenance of your home comfort system by a qualified technician. If not properly and routinely maintained, even the best heating and air conditioning equipment could have difficulties and become less 'fuel' efficient over time.

There are many possibilities that can trigger your HVAC system to freeze up; most of them usually need to be corrected by a professional technician. Ensuring the air filter is clean or replaced and determining the airflow is not restricted are about the only causes a homeowner should safely investigate or handle themself.

Low refrigerant: Sometimes, freezing up originates with a leak in the refrigerant lines. Weak solder joints, friction from piping rubbing or vibrating against an object, leaking valves or loose fittings can cause leaks. The length of time your system has been installed and the nature and location of the leak govern the decision whether to have the system repaired or replaced.

Dirty evaporator coil: As time passes, the evaporator coil will become dirty. When this happens, the results are similar to those of having a dirty filter. Gradually you will lose airflow, slowly enough that you probably would not realize it until it freezes up or is not cooling adequately. You will need to contact your local Service Experts sales and service center to remedy the problem.

Defective blower motor or relay: A blower motor running at an improper speed or not running at all can cause freezing. It can also be sporadic, starting at full speed and slowing down after it heats up. Or a relay could cause it to start one time and not the next. In either scenario, you will need to contact your local Service Experts sales and service center to correct the problem.

Should you discover that your system was freezing due to a dirty air filter, after replacing or cleaning the filter, you can speed up the thawing process by turning the system off and then turning on only the fan. If you have a heat pump system, you can try turning the system to heating mode until the ice has melted. After the ice has melted, turn the system settings back to normal. If the system refreezes, contact Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts in Kitchener to correct the problem.

If you are changing your Kitchener area home air conditioner, furnace or heat pump, it is the right time to also install a new zoning system to fix hot and cold spots or special temperature needs in the home. When your new comfort equipment is complimented by a zoning system, comfort is enhanced through precision temperature control in each zone.

Zoning is also a great idea for new homes since the system can be installed during construction. If you are purchasing a new home, check with your builder about a zoning system. It could make the difference between just enjoying your new house and being truly comfortable in it.

Saving Energy at Home

With energy costs going up, there are a few steps you can take to help reduce the expenses of heating and cooling your home. HVAC equipment usually consumes more energy than any other appliance in the home. This inevitably shows up every month on the energy bill, but it's important to remember that energy costs can be controlled in several ways.

Maintenance: One way to control energy costs is to schedule annual maintenance to ensure your furnace and air conditioner is running properly and efficiently. Operating dirty heating or cooling equipment can result in unnecessary loss of efficiency and may even damage the system.

High Efficiency: If you are in the market for a new home comfort system, consider buying a high-efficiency system. They are designed to help reduce your energy costs as well as help conserve natural resources. When choosing a new home comfort system, pay close attention to the SEER rating of the air conditioner and the AFUE of the furnace. The higher the SEER or AFUE, the higher the efficiency and savings.

Zoning: Zoning can significantly lower your heating costs. Zoning divides your home into separate comfort areas, which are heated or cooled based on the occupancy of the rooms. That means a zoning system allows each room in your home to potentially have its own temperature setting. With a zoning system, you no longer pay to heat or cool the space of your home that are rarely used, and you can have the exact temperature you want in highly occupied rooms.

Programmable Thermostats: Programmable thermostats can make a significant difference in energy consumption. Since you can proactively set a schedule for the days and times that the home is occupied, these thermostats are able to deliver exact comfort, efficiency and energy savings. For example, if you're going to be away, you can set the whole house at an energy-saving temperature to avoid heating or cooling an empty house and conserving energy in the process.

Indoor Air Quality

No, HVAC air filters vary by quality and size, and some have specs that others don't. Usually we recommend using the filter your HVAC manufacturer recommends pairing up with your installed equipment, however you could be tempted to try a different filter type for convenience or to remove extra contaminants from your residence.

All filters have MERV ratings, which range from 1-20. MERV means "minimum efficiency reporting value". A higher MERV rating equates to fewer contaiminants pass through, and it catches finer particulates. This sounds fantastic, and it can be, but a filter that stops finer dust and dirt will also stop up quicker, and pressure on your system will rise. If your system has not been engineered to function with this kind of filter, it can actually reduce your airflow throughout your residence, affecting your comfort and energy bills. So what should you do? Unless you live in a hospital, you probably don't need a MERV rating above 13. Truth be told, most residential systems are specifically designed to work with a filter with a MERV rating below 13, and frequently you will find that quality systems have been made to operate with a MERV rating of 8 or 11. All filters with a MERV rating of five should block most of the everyday nuisances people care about such as pollen, pet dander, and lint. While some filters claim to be able to catch mold spores, we recommend hiring a pro to clean out any mold from your house you find, instead of trying to delay the issue with a finer filter.

Often the packaging tells how often your filter ought to be replaced. There are one-month filters and there are 3-month filters. Additionally we have filters that are one flat piece, and you have some that are pleated with supporting wire. In our experience, the accordian style filters weather better, and are worth a little extra.

You may also consider washable filters, also known as reusable filters. Some homeowners like the environmentally friendly aspect of it, since they don't want to add to a dump, and others believe it's more convenient to simply pull out the filter and hose it off rather than making a special trip to the local hardware store for a filter of the correct size. These filters are often created to work several years and will save you cold cash over time, though they are pricier initially. However, washable filters should be dried out all the way before returning it back to prevent mold growth in your vents. In addition, most washable filters typically have a MERV rating between 1 and 4, and they lose their efficiency over a period of time. Some washable filters have been built with updated technology, such as electrostatic air filters, that are meant to effectively improve the MERV rating.

And lastly, filters are made of different materials. Fiberglass filters are what is commonly used, and are the disposable type. Polyester and pleated filters normally catch more debris, but also reduce the airflow in your home. And there are high efficiency particulate arrestance filters, or you might recognize the acronym HEPA. While you could be tempted to put in a HEPA filter, keep in mind that's like putting a MERV 16 filter in your HVAC system and it's highly unlikely that your system was made to handle that kind of resistance.

No doubt about it. Exposure to air pollutants can be up to 100 times higher indoors than outdoors. The American Lung Association estimates that most people spend 90 percent of their time indoors, making indoor air quality (IAQ) important for homeowners to know about. Many common household items contribute to poor indoor air quality. Compounds found in carpeting, furniture, upholstery and drapery fabric constantly emit fumes. Other sources of pollutants can include cleaning agents, paints and personal care products. The tight construction of today's homes also contributes significantly to poor IAQ. Things like weather stripping and storm doors are designed to save on energy costs. However, they also prevent proper ventilation by keeping indoor air in and outdoor air out. The result can be a buildup of contaminants within the home.

Poor IAQ can contribute to several health problems. Medical groups report that as many as half of all illnesses are caused or aggravated by indoor air pollution. Pollutants within the home can cause homeowners to suffer from flu-like symptoms such as headaches, nausea and respiratory irritation. Additionally, two existing health problems that can be helped by improving indoor air quality are allergies and asthma. By removing airborne dust particles, the amount of exposure the respiratory system has to them is reduced. Proper ventilation also plays an important role in improving indoor air quality, helping to reduce the concentration of pollutants inside the home.

The best method of detection is to use a carbon monoxide detector in a central location. A carbon monoxide detector is like a smoke alarm. It monitors the air for carbon monoxide and sounds an alarm if a specific level is detected. Ideally, you should have a detector adjacent to every living area, centrally located, or on each floor in your home. Carbon monoxide detectors are very effective when used in combination with a service plan. Call for additional details about purchasing a carbon monoxide detector.

You may have tried to eliminate indoor odors by spraying air fresheners or lighting candles. Unfortunately, these tactics only mask the odors, they don't get rid of them. These remedies may in fact negatively affect indoor air quality from chemicals that cause allergic reactions or eye irritation for homeowners.

Bacteria, dust mites, animal dander, cat saliva and mold may also be roots of your home's odor problem. One method to purify the air is integrating germicidal (UV) lights in your home, which helps kill odors and inhibit the growth of biological contaminants, sterilizing surfaces in the HVAC system. They also purify the air, preventing the growth of contaminants. The UV lights are installed to work with your home comfort system.

Sometimes poor ventilation is also a cause of unpleasant odors. Moisture condensation on walls windows and stuffy air are signs of poor ventilation. A qualified Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts technician can inspect your home comfort system to determine if this is the situation in your home. The technician can also inform you how to improve the ventilation system’s ability to adequately circulate and ventilate indoor air.

A great way to choose the correct humidifier is by having a home health report performed by Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts. Every house is different, and every family is different. So, every humidification need is also different. There are a few factors you should take into consideration when purchasing a humidifier for your home, Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts can help you understand and consider these items.

Consider size. A humidifier's capacity, or the amount of moisture it can dispense in a given time, should match your particular household's needs. The capacity is measured as gallons per day of operation. One method that is used to determine the correct-sized humidifier for your home is by multiplying the total floor area in by the ceiling height. We can provide you with this information and additional information to help you figure out which type of humidifier will best suit you and your family’s comfort needs.

Consider cost. Consider not only the dollar amount of the humidifier, but also operating and maintenance costs. Some products consume more energy than others, so choosing a model that is right for your home and budget is extremely important.

Every person and every home entails a different comfort need. The threshold of irritancy and triggers that affect people’s health and comfort combine to determine the proper solutions. High threshold levels may require simple solutions like a better air filter. Low threshold levels may require an air purification system for the reduction of triggers and irritants. With a Home Health Report Card, Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts can help you decide which indoor air improvement products are right for you.

According to studies commissioned by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, exposure to air pollutants indoors can be 100 times higher than outdoors. Frequent dusting and vacuuming can help reduce the amount of dust and dust mites present in your home. However, not all airborne particles can be eliminated. Filtration devices can help eliminate particles that are too small to be caught by vacuuming. Some filtration devices include UV light units, air filters, energy recovery ventilators (ERVs), heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) and electronic air cleaners. A Home Health Report Card from Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts can help you decide which indoor air improvement options are right for you. To receive a Home Health Report Card and personal air quality consultation Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts at .

Depending on the type you choose and the size of your house, a humidifier may use from 1.5 to 12 gallons per day when the furnace is operating. The amount of liquid used is enough to raise the humidity to your desired level, but not enough to notice a difference on your water bill.

How often to change your air filters can depend on a few things:

  • the type of air filter you are using
  • the overall indoor air quality
  • how many pets are in the home
  • the number of people occupying the home, and
  • the level of air pollution and construction around the home

For basic 1"-3" air filters, manufacturers usually direct you to change them every 30-60 days. If you suffer from light to moderate allergies, you could upgrade the air filter or change them more frequently. Or, if you're in a more remote area or less occupied home (like a vacation home) and there are fewer cars around, annually may be quite sufficient.

Here are common rules to help you know how often you should change the air filter at home:

  • Vacation home or single occupant and no pets or allergies: every 6-12 months
  • "Average" suburban home without pets: every 90 days
  • Add a dog or cat: every 60 days
  • Add more than one pet or anyone has allergies: 20-45 days

Yes. Carbon monoxide is an invisible threat to health and safety in the home. Though more commonly thought to be associated with fireplaces and vehicle emissions, carbon monoxide poisoning could be identified any home unless certain precautions are taken.

When in heating mode, people are confined indoors with unusually dry air for extended periods each year. Humidifiers help to keep comfortable levels of moisture, and properly maintained levels of humidity are beneficial for your respiratory system. Whole-house humidifiers work like ordinary room humidifiers. They add moisture into the air, making harsh, dry air much easier to breathe. And whole-house humidifiers help make the whole house comfortable, no more carrying a humidifier from room to room, spilling water on the floor as you go.

When we breathe it, carbon monoxide attaches to with the red blood cells in the blood and displaces the oxygen our bodies need to survive. Carbon monoxide combines with the red blood cells over 200 times more easily than oxygen and creates a condition known as carboxyhemoglobin saturation. Carbon monoxide, instead of oxygen, then moves into the vital organs through the bloodstream. Our organ tissues require oxygen; without it, our bodies start to asphyxiate or suffocate. It takes the body more time to eliminate carbon monoxide, however CO is absorbed very quickly.

Allergies and asthma are two health issues that could be helped with cleaner indoor air. When airborne irritants are removed, allergy and asthma sufferers often find relief from their symptoms. Even those in good health who may have never suffered from allergies could benefit from clean air. Dust, smoke and other particles float around in the air, causing your drapes and furniture to gather dust. By removing airborne dust particles, you reduce the amount of exposure your respiratory system has to them.

Unfortunately, the symptoms of carboxyhemoglobin saturation are easily overlooked because they appear to be flu-like. With mild exposure, people report that they experience headaches, fatigue and nausea. Medium exposure can cause a severe throbbing headache, drowsiness, disorientation, confusion and an accelerated heart rate. Extreme exposure may result in unconsciousness, convulsions, cardiorespiratory failure, coma and possibly death.

Prevention is the most important step. Taking proper safety steps will reduce your risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Because automobiles are a major cause of carbon monoxide poisoning, always take your car out of the garage to let it warm up. Never leave it turned on in the confined space of a garage. The same holds true for lawn mowers or snowmobiles.

Never use ovens or grills as heating devices. These heat sources are designed to be safe and efficient and not produce substantial amounts of carbon monoxide. However, it’s vital to check all combustion appliances to be sure they are operating correctly and to be sure that all chimneys and vents are connected properly and not blocked. Schedule annual maintenance by a qualified technician to check the condition of these appliances.

Many everyday household items may contribute to poor indoor air quality. Compounds found in carpeting, furniture, upholstery and drapery fabric constantly emit gases or fumes. Other sources of pollutants are cleaning agents, paint and personal care products.

Though they are usually more efficient, today’s homes do not breathe (ventilate) the way older homes have. Tight-sealing weather stripping and storm doors keep indoor air in and outdoor air out. This provides higher energy savings, but the limited exchange of outdoor and indoor air can mean a buildup of contaminants indoors. In these circumstances, a whole home ventilation system is recommended. Ventilation systems exchange stale indoor air for cleaner outdoor air, without sacrificing energy savings.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that is generated by the incomplete combustion of fuels such as wood, natural gas, gasoline, diesel, kerosene, coal and charcoal. It is caused by lack of oxygen or a disruption in the burning process. Household heating mechanisms such as a furnace, water heater, stove, space heaters, charcoal grill and gas dryer can be sources of carbon monoxide, especially if they are not in good working order or have been installed improperly. Vehicle exhaust fumes from attached garages, as well as improperly operating fireplaces may also be a source of carbon monoxide. CO is poisonous to the body and is fatal at high levels or with long exposure.

Indoor Air Quality is a term used to explain the level or amount of air pollution that exists inside a house or building, particularly occupied areas or rooms. Exposure to air pollutants can be up to 100 times higher indoors than outdoors, and the American Lung Association estimates that most people spend 90% of their time indoors. So the IAQ level and IAQ products that can increase air quality and eliminate indoor air pollution have become an important issue for many families, especially those suffering from allergies and respiratory issues.

Installing a humidifier is usually an easy job when, at the same time, you change out your furnace. But you can also have a humidifier fitted to your existing heating and cooling system. Periodic cleaning and draining of the reservoir is strongly recommended to maintain the system. Boehmers/Cronin Emery Service Experts can provide maintenance on the humidifier as needed, or proactively as part of our PLUS Maintenance Agreement. Call for more information about humidifier maintenance or for a free estimate on a new humidification system.

We suggest that a home's humidity level be between 30 and 60 percent. However, during extremely cold weather, a home loses humidity to the outdoors and the level may drop to as low as 10 percent. When humidity levels drop, we suggest you have a whole-home humidifier to help ensure that the proper level of moisture is available throughout the house. Not having enough moisture in the air can cause dryness in the membranes of the nose, throat and bronchial tubes and can be the source of several health-related problems. Relative humidity also has a significant effect on controlling the occurrence of airborne infections.
In addition to the health benefits, humidifiers are an easy way to keep room environments comfortable. Whole-house humidifiers work like old-fashioned room humidifiers. They put moisture into the air, making harsh, dry air easier to breathe, however, they work on a larger and more efficient scale. A humidifier uses from 1.5 to 12 gallons of water per day — just enough to raise the humidity in the home to the desired level, but not enough to make a difference on the water bill. And because a humidifier is installed into the ductwork, there is no need to carry one from room to room.

Dry air contributes to making your throat feel dry or aggravate respiratory ailments. During cooler or cold weather, your home rapidly loses its humidity to the outdoors. Humidity levels could even go down as low as 10%. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) recommends that homeowners maintain a humidity level between 30 and 60 percent.

Dry air may also cause more than health problems. Static electricity is a direct result of very dry air and houseplants may suffer from "winter drought" caused by low humidity levels. A whole-home humidifier places moisture into your indoor air and can help relieve ailments related to dry respiratory membranes and would be our recommended solution to this issue.