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B&L Ott’s Guide to Temperature and Temperature Control Systems

When you have control over your environment, you have the power to keep your family comfortable no matter what the conditions are outside. A quality HVAC system and temperature control system can give you this power. There are many options on the market today that provide you with even more options. With this in mind, you may have many questions. B&L Ott is here to help with this guide to choosing the right temperature and temperature control system for your home.

Why is Choosing the Right Temperature Important?

Comfort should be your primary concern. You want your family to be healthy and sleep soundly. After that, your main concern should be the efficiency and capability of your HVAC system. A system that is not operating properly will not adequately remove temperature or dehumidify the home. When this happens, your home will either get hot and sticky like a sauna or cold and clammy like your basement. Either situation can leave you or a family member saying, “I don’t like air conditioning.”

However, if you keep your thermostat within B&L Ott’s recommended temperature range, you can help keep your system operating properly. It will control both the humidity and the temperature in your home so your family can be comfortable.

Choosing an Appropriate Temperature

Your HVAC system is like a television. You usually keep it around the same volume, but sometimes you turn it up or down for various reasons. In Berks County, the temperature can change pretty quickly from day to day. One day you may be in shorts and the next you will need a sweatshirt to stay warm. With this in mind, your desired temperature may change from day to day. However, in winter most people are comfortable between 68-72 degrees with a relative humidity of around 30-35%. Then in summer, many choose a temperature between 70-75 degrees with a relative humidity around 50%.

If it’s a hot summer day with high humidity, you will typically lower the temperature in your home. Alternatively, if you have a system that enables dehumidification (contact B&L Ott for more info), you can just set your desired humidity level instead. This way you can feel comfortable without having to lower the temperature of the home. B&L Ott offers a variety of other solutions for customizing your system to suit your individual needs.

B&L Ott Temperature Control Options

If you want to gain more control of the temperature and humidity in your home, B&L Ott offers several different comfort control options. Depending on what HVAC model you choose B&L Ott will install a comfort control system that functions seamlessly with your system.

Programmable Thermostats

One option that can give you more control over the temperature in your home is a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat gives you greater customization of your home’s comfort. You can create a schedule based on your family’s daily routine and rarely have to adjust the temperature ever again. You can set a specific temperature and humidity level for each time of day. Newer models have an even greater sensitivity to temperature changes and humidity levels. They can help you maintain a more accurate temperature in the house.

Trane’s XL line of thermostats are all fully programmable and can be controlled with a free app on Android or IOS mobile phone operating systems. This will give you peace of mind while you are away from home, as you will gain the ability to control your home’s temperature remotely. Additionally, you can pair an Amazon Echo (Alexa) to control the temperature by voice. Just imagine lying in bed and simply saying “Alexa, turn the temperature down”. Before you know it your room will reach your ideal temperature without you having to lift a finger.

Home Zoning

Home zoning is another option that gives you more control over specific areas in your home. It is a system that uses additional thermostats and automatic power dampers in the ductwork to send conditioned air to only certain parts of the home. It is a great solution if you notice any uneven heating throughout your home. It can also help in the summertime when the heat rises to the second floor and makes it much hotter than your first floor. A home zoning system will improve the air flow and even out the temperature difference in your home.

B&L Ott offers several different zoning options. Depending on what type of system and duct setup you have, B&L Ott can customize a zoning solution for your home. If we have access to your ductwork, we can install zone dampers in the duct. The thermostats will control which zone dampers open or close. If you are interested in a home zoning system or have any questions please contact B&L Ott.

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Popular HVAC Models Installed by B&L Ott

Choosing an HVAC is an important decision. Whichever model you choose will warm, cool, and clean your home’s air for the next decade or two. With this in mind, you may research for hours to make sure you get the right one. There are many different brands, models, sizes, and features to sort through. Let B&L Ott save you some time by recommending three of the most popular models.

We prefer Trane brand HVAC systems for their reliability, durability, and efficiency. If you have questions or need help choosing a model, contact the professionals at B&L Ott in Berks County.

XC95m Furnace

If you are looking for a high efficiency, money saver, the XC95m may be the right HVAC system for you. At 95% efficiency, it will save the home owner big time on natural gas bills, over their older 80% model. This is the model B&L Ott installs most often for customers. The XC95m can be set up in almost any home situation with ductwork.

Finding warm and cool spots throughout your home can be frustrating. This model features a variable speed blower motor that can help combat uneven heating throughout your home. With its high efficiency, the XC95m is also cost effective. A majority of older furnaces operate between 75%-80% efficient. This means that for every dollar that you spend on heating your home, only 75 cents goes to heating the house and 25 cents go out the chimney. For every dollar spent with the XC95m, 95 cents go towards heating your home.

The XC95 comes in many different sizes to fit almost any home. It is also the most durable furnace in its class. Its heat exchanger and powder coated metal casing are crimped instead of welded. This allows it to withstand the harshest of Berks County weather conditions. With yearly maintenance and proper installation from B&L Ott, this model will serve you for 15-20 years.

XV18 Air Conditioner

trane air conditioning unitsAnother popular model is the XV18 air conditioner. This model dehumidifies better than any other unit. B&L Ott can install this model in a home of any size with ductwork. At the heart of the system lies a variable speed compressor. It is the most reliable, quiet, and energy efficient compressor that Trane makes. At 18 SEER (SEER is like MPG on a car), the XV18 is highly efficient. Compared to an older conventional A/C unit, you will spend much less to keep your house at the same, if not cooler temperature.

Like the XC95m, the XV18 is extremely durable with a powder coated, louvered case. Even the screws are zinc plated to prevent rusting. This unit will last season after season, and will not break down due to weathering. This model requires yearly maintenance from B&L Ott to help ensure efficiency and reliability. The life expectancy of a well-maintained XV18, when installed by B&L OTT, is 15-20 years.

Trane Clean Effects Electronic Air Cleaner

If you are looking for a system to clean the air in your home, the Trane Clean Effects electronic air cleaner may be your best choice. This model is 99.98% effective at removing airborne particles from your breathing air. It can filter dust and allergens out of the air, down to .1 microns. That’s 700 times smaller than a human hair! B&L Ott can install this model into any home with enough space and ductwork.

This system saves you money by keeping the system clean. Because the dust and dirt are not getting through the filter, it is not getting stuck on vital parts of the system. Dirt and dust build up will decrease any HVACs efficiency. It may also cause premature failure of the system.

The Trane Clean Effects has a powder coated case and micro engendered internal parts making it durable. This system should be cleaned twice a year by a Trane certified technician. With proper maintenance and installation from B&L Ott, it will provide 10+ years of dependable service.

 

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Common Questions about Generac Generators

generac generatorEvery Berks County resident knows how bad the Pennsylvania roads can get in the winter. It only takes one bad patch of black ice for a car to spin out, hit a pole, and cause you to lose power. Not to mention falling tree branches if you live in the woods.

Without a generator, life during a power outage becomes tricky. If you’re thinking about buying a new generator, you may have many questions. B&L Ott is here to help by covering the basics with these common questions. If you have more questions, you can contact us by phone or through our website.

What is a Generac Generator?

A Generac generator is a system that supplies electricity to your home when you lose power. They are typically installed just outside of your home. They run on either natural gas or liquid propane.

How Does a Generac Generator Work?

Power outages are sensed by an automatic transfer switch.  The switch immediately tells the system to turn on. Then a supply of electricity is sent into your home to power your appliances. This process can occur so seamlessly that some owners may not realize that they lost power. The generator produces electricity the same way your power company does. It just happens on a smaller scale.

What Maintenance Does It Require?

Yearly maintenance is required for a Generac Generator. During this time, B&L Ott, we will change the oil, oil filter, air filter, and spark plugs. We also run full system diagnostics. This includes testing the transfer switch, the battery, valve clearance in the motor, and all other components. We will make sure that the system is operating properly to ensure that you have power when you need it most. Our certified technicians can perform any service or maintenance that you may need.

Will It Power Everything In My House?

A Generac Generator can power everything in your home, but it does have limitations. If you have an all-electric home, it can be difficult to find a model large enough to power everything. However, we do offer alternatives to get the power where you need it. We can install modules that will cut power to unnecessary appliances. This will ensure that you can power the most important appliances.

It is rare that we cannot power everything. Talk to a B&L Ott comfort consultant to learn if we can find a generator that can power every appliance in your home.

Are They All Automatic?

Whole-home systems are all automatic. This is one of the greatest features Generac Generators have to offer. When a power outage occurs, your home will regain power within seconds. Even if you are away from home, you don’t have to worry about your pipes freezing or your food spoiling.

How Do I Choose the Right Size for My Home?

There are many models and sizes available for whole-home generators. While you may be able to generally determine what size you need, talking to a B&L Ott professional is helpful in many ways. With years of experience, our technicians know what sizes, features, and models work best.

Rather than researching for hours, you can schedule a free in-home consultation. Tell us about your situation and we will give you our professional opinion. We will take your wants, home, and budget into consideration. Then we will help you choose the best Generac Generator for your home.

How Long Does It Take to Install?

B&L Ott can install your new generator in just one day. We will arrive at your home around 8 am and finish around 4 pm. Timing can vary depending on the difficulty of the installation. On installation day, you should plan on being without power. Be sure to prepare and take care of any activities that need electricity beforehand. After installation day, you will never have to be without power again.

Once your new system is installed, we will teach you everything you need to know. We will show you signs to look for to ensure that your generator is always operating properly. Then the technician will program your system to run a weekly exercise mode. This will help keep the motor running efficiently.  Finally, B&L Ott will schedule your complimentary maintenance visit to service your generator.

Why Should I Choose Generac?

Unlike other companies, Generac’s sole focus is power generation and generators. They do not perform any other services or sell any other products. This allows the manufacturer to focus only on improving their generators so that you get a quality product. Generac is the number one selling brand of whole home generators among homeowners. They are preferred by 7 out of 10 homeowners who invest in home backup power. When you back that with B&L Ott’s 24/7/365 service, you get reliability you can feel comfortable about.

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Tips for Saving Money on Your Water Heater Bill

You rely on your water heater for warm showers, doing laundry, washing dishes, etc. When you use hot water for so many daily tasks, your water heater bill climbs higher and higher. Although you love the convenience of hot water, you may not appreciate the bills that come with it.

If your water heater bills are too high, B&L Ott is here to help. There are a variety of ways you can lower your water heater bill. By taking proper care of your water heater, you can lower your bills. You can also reduce the number of repairs needed, and prolong your water heater’s life.

shower-653671_960_720Conserve Water in Your Daily Routine

Everyone wants a long hot shower after a hard day of work. It helps relax your muscles and gives you time to clear your head. Yet, the longer you take, the higher your bills go. By learning to conserve hot water, you can save more on your water heater bill. The average shower uses approximately 2 gallons per minute. When you add multiple people over many days and other utilities that use hot water, every gallon adds up.

There are a variety of ways to conserve hot water. Instead of taking long showers, snuggle up in a warm blanket with a warm drink. Only wash your clothing and dishes when you have a full load. Some clothing such as jeans and hoodies can be worn a few days before they need to be washed. Saving a little bit every day will save a good amount of energy and money in the long run.

Lower the Temperature on the Thermostat

Most manufacturers set the thermostat at a higher temperature than some households really need. Even when you are not using hot water, water will be heated and put on standby for when you do need it. The higher your thermostat is set, the more energy your water heater will use to warm up your water. When this water is not getting used and is only on standby. You are paying for extra heat that you are not using. Turning back the thermostat by 10-20 degrees can save both energy and money.

Insulate Your Water Heater

If you have a hot water storage tank that is not factory insulated, insulating it can help retain heat. Most hardware stores sell insulation blankets for this purpose. B&L Ott recommends insulation only for water heaters in cooler, unconditioned spaces. It is also a good idea to insulate your pipes. Hot water loses heat as it travels from the storage tank to your faucets and shower heads. By insulating your exposed pipes you can help trap some of the heat so that less is lost.

Perform Regular Maintenance and Fix Leaks

plumbing-840835_960_720If you do not properly take care of your water heater, you will likely run into problems. Sediment will collect in the storage tank, parts may break, or leaks can occur. Issues like these make your system have to work harder to do its job. The harder your system works, the more money comes out of your wallet. You will also have to pay more money for repairs.

B&L Ott recommends inspecting and performing water heater maintenance regularly. Check for leaks and damaged parts. Drain the sediment out of the bottom of the tank. If you need help with maintenance or repairs, you should contact B&L Ott. A knowledgeable B&L Ott technician can answer any questions you may have. They can also help you learn how to properly take care of your specific heater.

Upgrade Your Heater for More Efficiency

If your water heater is on the old, it may not be as efficient as some of the newer models. The more efficient your system is, the more money you save in the long run. If you are interested in an upgrade, contact B&L Ott. You can also learn more about B&L Ott’s water heater services here: http://otthvac.com/water-heater-installation-maintenance/. If you live in the Berks County area, B&L Ott can help you select the right water heater for your home and family.

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Reasons to Get a Generac Generator from B&L Ott

generac generatorFall is here and colder weather is on its way. When the harsh winds start to blow, trees fall on power lines. When the roads are slippery, cars and trucks can crash into telephone poles as well. You can lose power unexpectedly and in an instant. Losing power is a great inconvenience. Without power, you lose the ability to complete most of your daily activities. A Generac Generator from B&L Ott will allow you to rest assured that you and your family have power when you need it.

Your Home Stays Operational 

If you aren’t home to turn on your portable generator, your home can run into a variety of problems. Without power, the systems and appliances that keep your home operational stop working. Lack of electric power can allow your pipes to freeze, your home to flood, or your food to spoil.

With a B&L Ott Generac Generator, you won’t have to worry about these issues. Most of B&L Otts Generac Generators automatically turn on when the power goes out. When the sensors detect a power outage, a message will be sent to the generator to turn on.  It will power the necessary systems to keep your home functioning. Unlike a portable generator, you don’t have to worry about hooking it up to your various systems. You also don’t have to worry about going out in the cold every few hours to refuel the generator.

Have Heat and Air Conditioning

Without a working HVAC system in the dead of winter, your home’s temperature will drop quickly. In the middle of summer, the heat will become unbearable in just a few hours. You have to use blankets to keep you warm and handheld fans to keep you cool. While the HVAC system is off, warm and cool air leaks out of your home. Then when the power is restored, your HVAC system has to work overtime to get the temperature back to normal.  With a B&L Ott Generac Generator, you can stay comfortable and save your HVAC system some work.

Have Water Pressure

Another problem that comes with no power is that you lose water pressure. If you can predict the outage, you have time to fill the bathtub with water. However, if you lose power unexpectedly, you may not have water for washing, cooking or drinking. With a B&L Ott Generac generator, you can keep the water flowing. You won’t have to make due or find water elsewhere.

refrigerator-70580_960_720Keep Your Food from Spoiling

You need your refrigerator to keep your food fresh and cold. If your refrigerator stops running due to an outage, your food will get warm and begin to spoil. The frozen food in the freezer will also begin to melt. If your power doesn’t come back on within a few hours, you may end up having to throw out a good amount of food.

A B&L Ott Generac generator will save you all that money lost on spoiled food. It will keep your refrigerator running so that your food stays edible during a power outage. A B&L Ott generator can also help ensure that you have the tools and ingredients you need to cook and prepare food.

Minimize Business Downtime

B&L Ott generators can also be installed in office buildings. If you own a business, no power means many of your employees can’t do their job. They can process orders, answer phones, or use machinery. Downtime causes your business to lose money.  A B&L Ott generator can help ensure that your business stays up and running so you don’t lose profits.

Avoid Flood Damage

No one wants a flooded basement. If your home loses power, so does your sump pump. Accumulated water will not be removed from your home. If the weather is rainy or snowy, your basement may end up flooding as a result. Any possessions in the basement may also get destroyed. B&L Ott’s Generac generators can save the day. When you lose power, they will keep your sump pump running so your basement stays dry.

Contact B&L Ott to Install a Generac Generator

If you live in the Berks County area and are interested in installing a Generac generator, contact B&L Ott. We can answer any questions you may have and help guide you through the installation process.

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The Pros and Cons of Ductless Heating and Cooling

hvac financingDuctless heating and cooling systems have been around for decades. Mini-split systems are HVAC alternatives to forced air and window air conditioners. They come with a variety of pros and cons to consider. They are a useful option when you want to add temperature control to one or two preexisting rooms. B&L Ott prefers Mitsubishi brand mini-split systems because they are quiet, easy-to-use, and efficient. B&L Ott can easily install one in your Berks County home or business building.

Pros

Don’t Take Up Much Room

Mini-split HVAC systems are only slightly larger than a window unit. They are composed of one or two indoor units, one outdoor unit, and a controller. The main units are connected by a line of wires and refrigerant pipes through a small hole in the wall. Indoor units are long and thin and are usually mounted above a window or door on an outer wall.

Easy to Install

Installation of a mini-split system is fast and easy. You won’t have to take off work for long for a B&L Ott mini-split HVAC system installation. First, a B&L Ott technician will mount both the indoor and outdoor units. Then they will connect the refrigerant and electrical lines. Within an hour or two, you will be able to warm or cool your room with a new mini-split system from B&L Ott.

Less Air Leaks and Security Issues

Forced central air systems that use ducts are prone to air leaks due to blockages. When dirt and debris build up in air ducts, they make HVAC system’s work harder to warm or cool your home. You end up paying for lost air. This is not a problem with a mini-split HVAC system from B&L Ott. Without ducts to pass through, little to no air is lost. Window units block the window and create a safety hazard. B&L Ott mini-split systems do not create the same issue.

Efficient

B&L Ott mini-split HVAC systems are more efficient than traditional HVAC systems. Without ducts and leaks, more air gets directly into your home. This saves both energy and makes your home more environmentally-friendly. It will also help you save money on your energy bills. B&L Ott mini-split HVAC systems also work differently than traditional models. Instead of turning on and off, they speed up and slow down. This also requires less energy to function.             

Quiet

If you are tired of noisy HVAC systems, you will be glad to know that most B&L Ott mini-split systems are quiet. This is a practical feature for those who prefer peace and quiet or have a young child in their home.

dollar-1362244_960_720Cons

Upfront Cost

Mini-split systems are more much more expensive than window units. Mini-split systems are also more expensive than forced central air systems if you add them to more than a few rooms. They do make up for the upfront cost with improved efficiency over time, though. If you are unsure about the costs of our different HVAC systems, contact B&L Ott. One of our technicians can help you make those calculations based on your situation.

Regular Maintenance

B&L Ott mini-split HVAC systems need more maintenance than some other systems. Each unit’s filter must be washed monthly. If you neglect maintenance, debris will accumulate and cause serious problems. You will also need to call B&L Ott to repair, clean, and inspect your system. Neglect can also shorten the life expectancy of your mini-split HVAC system.

Aesthetics

Mini-split HVAC systems don’t come in a variety of colors or styles. Most come in the basic colors of white, beige or black. They also can’t cover them so finding a way to camouflage them is difficult. Yet, some B&L Ott customers find them easy to forget about as they are small and mounted high.

Difficulty Handling Large Loads

Older models can have trouble handling the harsh Berks county winters and brutal summers. Some mini-split HVAC systems have trouble handling large loads because of their small size.  Yet, some newer models can handle larger loads. As HVAC technology improves, B&L Ott’s mini-split system become stronger and more efficient. If you live in the Reading area and are interested in a mini-split HVAC system, contact B&L Ott. We can help answer any questions you may have.

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When Should I Replace My HVAC System?

the-eleventh-hour-758723_960_720The life expectancy of an HVAC system is not a set amount of time. Most manufacturers tell you how long your HVAC system will last on the box or in the manual. Yet many variables can affect the true life expectancy. With this in mind, it can be difficult to determine when you should buy a new one. B&L Ott in Berks County is here to help.

Below you will find a variety of questions you can ask yourself. These questions will help you determine when it’s time to replace your current HVAC system. If you need more help or have more questions, feel free to contact B&L Ott for advice. We have skilled and knowledgeable technicians who are ready to assist you.

How Well Has Your HVAC System Been Working?

One of the easiest ways to determine if you need a new HVAC system is to analyze how well your current one is working. Have you been calling B&L Ott often lately for repairs or maintenance? If you need repairs every month or two, it may be time for a new system.

Many customers put off purchasing a new system because they believe it is too expensive. Buying a new HVAC system can save you money in the long run, though. Paying for many repairs and a new system after a breakdown is more expensive than paying for just a new system.

How Well Has Your HVAC System Been Maintained?

Do you take care of your system and provide proper maintenance? You should inspect, clean, and fix minor repairs monthly.  If you’ve been neglecting your HVAC, your HVAC system will not last as long. It may not even last until the beginning of its life expectancy.  With excellent maintenance, you may be able to use if well past its life expectancy. If you need help with maintenance, schedule an appointment with a B&L Ott technician.

How Old is Your HVAC System?

Although the manufacturer’s approximation is not exact, it is usually a close estimate. You will also want to think about when the HVAC’s model was released. Older models do not last as long as newer models. As years go by, HVAC technology improves and systems last longer and longer. Most HVAC systems will last between 15 and 20 years. If your system is nearing this age, you may want to start thinking about a replacement.

Does the Temperature in Your Home Vary? Do You Want It To?

Uneven heating and cooling can be another reason to replace or upgrade your HVAC system. If your home has warm or cool spots, your current HVAC system may be inefficient. When your HVAC system is too small, it may struggle to control the temperature of your entire home. Upgrading to a larger model from B&L Ott will help ensure that you have comfort throughout your home. B&L Ott also offers home comfort zoning and mini-split systems.

accountant-1238598_960_720Are Your Energy Bills Too High?

High energy bills can also be a sign that you need a new HVAC system. Older machines may struggle to run efficiently due to worn out parts or clogged airways. The older your HVAC system, the harder it has to work to change the temperature in your home. If your system is too old, you may notice your energy bills rising. Your lights may also dim whenever your HVAC system turns on. A new HVAC system from B&L Ott can help lower your energy bill by efficiently warming and cooling your home.

Is Your HVAC System Noisy?

As parts get worn, they begin to break and no longer work properly. This can cause your HVAC system to make some strange noises. If your system is loud when running, it may be time to replace and upgrade. Most newer HVAC models run much more quietly than old models. If you want more peace and quiet, you should consider buying a new system from B&L Ott.

System Replacement Planning from B&L Ott

If you are not quite ready to replace your HVAC system, but still want to plan a replacement, B&L Ott offers system replacement planning. System replacement planning allows you to consider options beforehand and plan your budget. This way you do not have to rush your HVAC choice or scramble to find the payment. To learn more, you can view our service page here: http://otthvac.com/system-replacement-planning/. You can also contact B&L Ott through our website here: http://otthvac.com/contact-us/ or call us at 610-816-6026.

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Which Type of Air Conditioner Should I Buy?

person-864804_960_720Even if you know that you want to buy a new air conditioner from B&L Ott, you may not know what type of system to get. You may not even know what types and features are available. There are many types of air conditioning systems and even more models and brands. Each one has something different to offer you.

Some units are more effective while others are more compact and quiet. They come with different efficiency ratings, different technology advancements and of course different prices. With so many different options, it can be an overwhelming task to choose the right system for your needs. Let B&L Ott help with this guide. If you need more help, you can also schedule an appointment with a B&L Ott technician.

Single Window Units

Features

Single window units are one of the most common and effective solutions to cool a single small room. With this type of air conditioner, a single box house all the components. This included the compressor, condenser, expansion valve coil, evaporator and cooling coil. Single window units use a hose to vent the hot air out of the room, thus keeping the room cooler.

Benefits

One of the single window unit’s nicest features is that they are small. They can fit into a window or small wall compartment. You can also move it to another room if the need arises. This type of air conditioner is also one of the cheapest systems. If you need a quick and easy fix for a single room, a single window unit may be your best option.

Installation is fast and easy. Installing this type of system can take less than a half hour. Some tech-savvy owners choose to install this type of unit themselves.  Yet, it is always a good idea to call on a professional from B&L Ott. We will properly install your new system and answer any questions you may have.

Possible Issues

This type of air conditioning is not effective if you need to cool more than one small room. Some models can be heavy or noisy. When placed in a window they can also cause security risks. Some non-quality systems also can get too hot and leak heat back into the room.

mitsubishi minisplit heating and coolingSplit Air Systems/ Ductless Mini-Split Systems

Features

If you only need extra cooling in a few rooms a split air system or ductless mini-split system are a good solution. Some systems connect to your pre-existing ducts, while other units are ductless. If your home does not already have ducts, a ductless mini-split system may be your best option. Talk to a B&L Ott technician to learn more.

With a split system B&L Ott will need to install two fairly small units. The indoor unit contains the evaporator coil and cooling fan. This unit removes heat and moisture from the air. This unit is usually mounted high on the wall. The outdoor unit contains the condenser coil and the compressor. This releases the heat and pumps refrigerant through the coils. Tubing in the wall connects these two units.

Benefits

Ductless mini-split system installation from B&L Ott is fast and easy. They are usually quieter and more powerful than single units. They also don’t lose heat through the use of ducts. This makes them more energy efficient and saves you money on your electric bills. Another positive feature is that they allow you to set up different temperature zones. If you only need cooling in a single room, a mini-split system can accommodate those needs.

Possible Issues

Split Air Systems are more expensive than single units. They can also be more expensive than central air systems if you install them in more than a few rooms. To cool your entire home, it would cost roughly 30 percent more. They also need to be permanently mounted on an outside wall. Installation can be tricky, even for tech-savvy owners. You should call B&L Ott to buy and install a mini split air conditioning system.

Packaged Central/Forced Air

Features

B&L Ott recommends central air systems for those who want to cool their entire home. For most systems, B&L Ott installs a single large outdoor unit on a slab of concrete. This box contains all the components, including the compressor, condenser, expansion valve, and evaporator. A blower and air ducts circulate the air throughout your home. Central air conditioning systems work by removing warm air. Then they cycle the cool air throughout your home to reach your desired temperature.

Benefits

Central air conditioning is one of the most effective ways to cool your home. They have more power than individual and split units. Central air is also the most affordable way to cool more than a few rooms. With most of the machinery outside, central air is a quieter option for those who don’t want a lot of indoor noise.

Possible Issues

Installing a central forced air conditioning system can be complicated. If you do not already have ducts, B&L Ott may need to tear out walls to install some. Ducts also need cleaning every year or two. If you need help, B&L Ott offers a duct cleaning service.

 

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A Brief Guide to Air Filters

Air Filter 2If you have a home with a forced air, HVAC system, air filters an important component in keeping your air clean.  Air filters reduce the amount of contaminating debris in your home. When a filter is not well maintained, it can become clogged and push dirt into your home. Family members with asthma or allergies will have difficulty breathing. To help you prevent these problems, B&L Ott in Berks County has created this brief guide to air filters.

How do they Work?

When your HVAC system is turned on, the air circulated throughout your home and cleaned by an air filter. The air filter is made of woven cotton and synthetic blend materials. The filter allows air to pass through while stopping any larger particles. Dust, dirt, pet dander, and bacteria get caught in the woven fibers.  Through this process, contaminating particles are taken out of the air.

Where is it Located?

To be able to clean or replace your air filter, you first need to figure out where to find it. The filter is usually located somewhere near your furnace. If you have your manual, it should tell you where the filter can be found. It may be inside the blower area of your unit or in the ceiling return air grille. Filters are easily recognizable and look like a screen. If you are having difficulty finding your filter, you can contact B&L Ott in Leesport for help. We can ask you some simple questions about your system and try to guide you to the location of your filter.

How Often Should I Clean It?

Some forced air, HVAC systems have replaceable filters while others have to be cleaned. You should consult your owner’s manual to find out how often it needs cleaning. You should inspect and clean your filters at least once per month. Doing so keeps your HVAC system healthy so that it runs efficiently.

If you do not clean your air filters often enough, dirt will get into your system and cause problems. These problems may lead to costly repairs in the future. Dirty filters will also make your blower work harder to push the air past the clogged filter. This will increase your energy bills. Frequent cleaning is an effective way to maintain your system and save money in the long run.

How Often Should I Replace It?

air conditioner repairDeciding how often to change your filter, can depend on several factors. The type of filter, the rate your home gets dirty, and air pollution should all be taken into account. Unless your manual says otherwise, you should inspect your filters 1-2 times per month.  When they get too dirty, you should clean or replace them. If you have a system that uses replaceable filters, you can replace them every time they get dirty. On the other hand, if you have a system that uses cleanable filters, you can clean them until they become too worn.

It is a good idea to keep a stock of fresh filters on hand so that you can easily replace them whenever you need. Filters can be purchased in the home maintenance section of department stores. If you need help replacing your filter, schedule an appointment with B&L Ott.

More Questions?

If you have any more questions, one of B&L Ott’s technicians would be happy to assist you. We can also help you choose and install a new system. Selecting a new system can seem confusing when there are many different types, sizes, and qualities to choose from. B&L Otts technicians have the knowledge to help you choose which make is best for your home and family. You can contact us at the following link: http://otthvac.com/contact-us/.

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7 Factors to Consider When Choosing a New HVAC System

air conditioner installationHVAC systems are responsible for keeping your family warm in the winter and cool in the summer and although most models will last you a good 10-15 years, eventually HVAC systems experience a total breakdown or become outdated. When this happens, it is time to start looking into a replacement, but purchasing a new HVAC system can seem complicated  and give you a lot to think about. There are a lot of questions that need to be answered before choosing which brand and model are best for your home and family. Therefore, B&L Ott has compiled this list of seven factors to consider when deciding to install a new heating and cooling system.

Size

One of the first factors you will need to think about when selecting a new HVAC system is what size system you will need. This will depend mostly on how large your home is and how often you use your system.

  • Choosing a system with a capacity that is too large for your home will cause the system to turn on and off more often and wear down the parts faster.
  • Picking a system with a capacity that is too small will cause your system to have to work harder and run all of the time. This will also wear out your system and cause your energy bills to skyrocket.

If you need assistance in choosing the right size system for your home, one of B&L Ott’s technicians would be happy to help.

Quality

When buying a new appliance, it can be easy to sacrifice quality for cost. High-quality systems can seem too extravagant when you are able to get what you need at a lower price. Higher quality machines actually save you money in the long run, though. While the initial cost may be higher, quality HVAC systems are often more efficient and make up for the extra cost with more efficiency and fewer repairs. In addition, capitalizing on monthly payment plans (especially with special financing) can make the higher quality unit more affordable in the long run.

Price

If you don’t have an unlimited budget, money will be a factor in selecting your new HVAC system. The best way to get the most for your money is by doing some research. Find out what different companies are charging for each system and find out which models have the best customer ratings. If you lack the time to properly research different systems, one of B&L Ott’s technicians can help you select the best unit within your budget.

trane hyperion air handler

Reputation

Buying an HVAC system is an investment and when you make an investment, you want it to get back what you put into it. If you pay good money for a system, you want it to work when you need it most. To assure reliability, you should research a system before you purchase it. Find out what brands have the best reputation. B&L Ott has studied the performance of a variety of makes and models over the years and prefers Trane products for their dependability.

Climate

The climate you live in can also be an influence which HVAC system you should choose. Berks County has a moderate climate that can be very cold in the winter and very hot in the summer. Therefore, it is important to pay attention to the quality of both the heating and air conditioning units. If you lived in a climate that is mostly hot or cold year round you may want to pay more attention to the quality of whichever system you use the most.

Technology Features

Over the years, new technologies have improved HVAC systems in a variety of ways. B&L Ott offers a variety of features that can be connected to a new HVAC system, including home automation, home comfort zoning, and smartphone connection. With these features, you can save on energy bills, improve the efficiency of your system, and conveniently control the temperature of your home. If you are interested in any of these additional systems, ask about which models are compatible with these features.

Use B&L Ott

When you purchase a new HVAC system, you want to have it installed by an experienced and professional business. B&L Ott has been providing HVAC service to the Berks County area for over three decades. If you live in the Reading area, it is important to hire a company that is near your home. A new HVAC system will likely need routine maintenance and repairs over throughout the years. By creating an ongoing relationship with a business like B&L Ott, you will know what to expect when a technician visits your home and better ensure that you can get whatever parts you may need.

 

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