Heating & Air Conditioning Blog in Greensboro NC

Is the Air in Your Home Safe to Breathe?

Is the air in your home safe to breathe? Most people fail to realize just how important their house’s indoor air quality (IAQ) is to their overall wellness. Indoor air pollutants and allergens can cause a number of health problems, especially for residents with asthma or allergies. Here are a few ways to help you breathe easier and keep your loved ones healthy.

Watch for Moisture

Mold and mildew are both common asthma triggers and allergenic compounds. Some varieties can be particularly damaging to even a healthy person’s lungs. Mold commonly grows in damp environments such as your kitchen, bathroom or inside the walls. The spores that are released help the fungus grow and spread throughout the home. The easiest way to reduce and remove mold or mildew is to keep your house dry. Invest in a dehumidifier to keep humidity down in problematic areas and don’t let condensation sit for too long.

Keep Pests Out

Rats, cockroaches and other rodents and insects are more than just unwanted pests; the waste they leave behind can cause health problems long after they’re gone. Roaches naturally carry a protein that is a common allergen as well as an asthmatic trigger. This can be especially problematic for indoor air quality if these pests get in your air ducts, as the contaminated air will then circulate throughout your home. Dust mites that live on carpet and furniture leave behind droppings and microscopic shell pieces that are similarly allergenic.

Vacuum and dust regularly to keep insect debris to a minimum. If you suspect pests have been in your ducts it’s also a good idea to have them professionally cleaned and sealed to prevent future incursions.

Monitor Indoor Gas Levels

Not all air pollutants are as easy to detect and handle. Carbon monoxide (CO) gas is often referred to as a “silent killer” due to the fact that it can so easily go undetected. Symptoms of exposure can vary depending on a person’s age, the levels of CO and the length of exposure. Extended periods of exposure to even low CO levels can lead to flu-like symptoms, while high levels can result in death. Carbon monoxide sensors are inexpensive pieces of equipment that you can likely find at your local hardware store. Similar to smoke detectors, the sensors will activate a siren when dangerous CO levels are detected.

Keep Your HVAC Maintained

The air in your home is filtered through your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. AC systems, in particular, contain powerful filters designed to remove pollutants from the air before it is spread throughout your home. It’s important to regularly maintain your HVAC system, replacing AC filters at least once every other month. Families with members who are allergic or asthmatic might consider replacing their AC filters on a monthly basis.

HVAC Services in Greensboro, NC

Kay Heating & Air Conditioning is committed to meeting the needs of our North Carolina HVAC customers. The safety of your family is a high priority for our company, which is why we’re committed to educating our clients on the importance of indoor air quality and how to improve it. We’re proud to offer heating and air conditioning repair, as well as installation services. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!

Why the EPA Is Phasing Out R-22 Refrigerant and What it Means for You

As a homeowner, you probably only think about your air conditioner when it starts showing signs of a problem. But before you fork up hard-earned money for repairs or installing an entirely new system, it’s important to know the latest facts and details regarding these types of products and the industry overall.

One recent development involves the EPA’s phasing out of certain ozone-depleting substances (ODSs), including Class I and Class II controlled substances, which are predominantly chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) respectively. While Class I CFCs have been entirely phased out at this point, the EPA is still in the process of ceasing the production and importation of Class II HCFCs, most of which will be completely phased out by 2020.

Wondering how exactly this information affects you and your neighbors in the Greensboro, North Carolina area? Here’s a brief overview of what you need to know.

Your AC System May Use a Refrigerant That Will Soon be Phased Out

Until fairly recently, R-22 (an HCFC better known by its brand name, Freon®), was by and large the most commonly used refrigerant in air conditioning and refrigeration equipment. Freon is still used in many homes today, particularly those with air conditioning units that were manufactured prior to 2010, at which point the government officially mandated the discontinuation of the manufacturing of new Freon-powered AC systems.

The problem with Freon and all other HCFCs is that it releases harmful greenhouse gasses into the air when used, which plays a role in depleting earth’s ozone layer and has led the EPA and government to begin favoring a hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) known as R-410A instead (also more commonly referred to by its brand name, Puron®). R-410A is more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly than R-22, so it has dual benefits for you, the consumer, and our planet as a whole.

What This Shift from R-22 to R-410A Means for Homeowners Like You

Although R-22 refrigerant will continue to be available (until 2020) for homes that still use these types of systems, it becomes more and more expensive with each passing year as the phaseout progresses. It’s also important to note that once R-22 is completely phased out, you will not be able to replenish your R-22 system with R-410A refrigerant, as the two are not compatible. In other words, in order to replenish your system after 2020, you will need to have a system that runs on R-410A.

That said, if you find yourself needing to make even somewhat extensive repairs to your R-22 system at any point from here forward, it’s strongly recommended you forego the repairs and invest your money in a new, energy-efficient R-410A system instead. Not only will this ensure you’re prepared once the phaseout is complete in just a few more years, it will also allow you to reap the efficiency, performance and environmental benefits R-410A systems afford!

New, Energy-Efficient HVAC System Installations in Greensboro

If your HVAC unit is broken, inefficient, outdated or less-than-ideal in any other way, our team at Kay Heating and Air would be happy to install a new, energy-efficient, high-performance system that uses ozone-friendly refrigerants like R-410A. To learn more about our wide array of high-efficiency HVAC systems and services or to speak with one of our friendly technicians about whether repairing or replacing your unit is the best decision at this time, contact us online today! If you have any questions regarding the differences between R-22 and R-410A refrigerants, please do not hesitate to call us at 336-274-6323!


My Air Conditioning Doesn’t Blow Cold Air!

air conditioner cold airWith summer well on its way, the days are starting to heat up. Homeowners across the country are beginning to rely heavily on their air conditioning units to keep them cool and comfortable. What, then, do you do if your A/C is just making the problem worse by circulating warm air throughout your home? If you’re experiencing these problems, it’s definitely time to call in an expert from Kay Heating and Air to solve your cooling woes once and for all.

Refrigerant Problems

Refrigerant is a type of super-cooling liquid your HVAC unit uses to cool the air circulating through the system. As one of the top reasons an air conditioning unit blows hot air, refrigerant leaks are usually a straightforward fix. Catching the leak in the act can be tricky because the valve is situated outside your home. Unless you’re actively watching it, you’d never realize the leak was there. Leaks typically occur with regular wear-and-tear or when a joint comes loose from heavy operation or poor manufacturing. Switching on the A/C after months of winter hibernation without servicing can cause damage to the unit, potentially leading to leaks in the outer valve. Remember: just because it’s a common problem, doesn’t mean it isn’t dangerous. Always call a professional if you suspect you may have a refrigerant leak. To prevent leaks in the future, have your unit serviced at least twice per year.

Broken Thermostats

Occasionally, the fault lies with your thermostat, not your actual HVAC unit. If you notice your unit isn’t carrying out your thermostat settings, there may be a communication issue between the two. Thermostats are usually attached to a sensing bulb and the compressor of your A/C unit. The thermostat uses the bulb to gauge the ambient temperature and adjust the unit’s operation accordingly, based on the thermostat’s settings. If your unit is capable of cooling air but simply isn’t, the compressor or the sensing bulb may be malfunctioning, leading the system to continue circulating warm air. A professional will inspect the sensing bulb for bends, breaks or kinks and service it to ensure it is properly functioning.

Dirty Air Filters

Surprising as it may be, sometimes it may only feel like the unit is blowing warm air. In actuality, the system may be functioning perfectly fine, but could be suffering from an obstruction in the air flow, preventing the home from cooling properly. Perhaps one of the simplest A/C fixes, replacing a dirty air filter can do wonders for your unit’s cooling abilities. Your air filter catches allergens, dust and debris that is circulating through the home. However, during months where pollen count or pet shedding are at their peaks, the filter can become filthy quite quickly. Without regular replacements or cleanings, the filter can block the flow of air, preventing your home from cooling.

Stay Cool This Summer with Kay Heating and Air

Summer is the season when your air conditioning unit needs to be at its best. Prepare for the long, hot days to come by scheduling maintenance ahead of time with one of the expert technicians from Kay Heating and Air. To schedule your service today, contact us online or call 336-274-6323.