Archive for the ‘Heat Pumps’ Category

Which Size Heat Pump Is Right For My Helotes Home?

Sunday, December 22nd, 2013

“Which size heat pump is right for my Helotes home?” If you’re considering a Helotes TX heat pump installation, that’s one of the first questions you need to grapple with. Texas winters are comparatively mild temperature-wise, which makes heat pumps an attractive alternative to traditional gas furnaces and boilers. Proper sizing is very important if you want the heat pump to function as it should. The right size depends on the needs of your home, of course, which means you want to talk to an expert when determining specifics.

You need to size your heat pump right because the wrong sized pump will cost you a great deal in wasted energy. If the pump is too small, it’s going to struggle to adequately heat your home, increasing wear-and-tear and adding to your monthly bill. If the pump is too large, something similar will happen: it will heat your house too quickly, cycling on and off multiple times throughout the day. Heat pumps use a big chunk of energy turning on, which means you want it to run for at least 15-20 minutes anytime it activates to get the most efficiency out of it. If it cycles on and off, it costs you money in higher bills, as well as increasing strain on the heat pump tremendously.

Determining the right size heat pump starts with the square footage of your home. Other home factors get involved as well, such as how much sunlight enters your home from large windows, and how much insulation you have in your attic. (An insulated home tends to retain heat much better and requires less energy from the heat pump as a result). You also have to factor in varying weather conditions, which can be tricky. Helotes averages about 60 degrees in the winter months, with lows dropping into the 40s at night. But we have exceptionally cold days which can get worse than that, and an expert needs to factor them in.

That’s a roundabout way of saying you should consult an expert to determine which size heat pump is right for your Helotes home. The professionals at General Air Conditioning handle Helotes TX heat pump installation, and can provide sound advice on your best options. Pick up the phone and give us a call today!

How Do Heat Pumps Heat My Home?

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

If you just went through a prolonged Texas summer, which can stretch far into the fall, then you know the benefit of an effective heat pump working for you. It provides the same level of cool, refreshing air as a quality standalone air conditioner. It’s just what you need to beat the heat.

But now the short winter season is almost here, and you’ll switch your heat pump over to “heating” mode. That seems a bit strange. After all the work the heat pump did providing you with a cooled home, now it will do the exact opposite. How is a heat pump capable of heating a home in addition to cooling it?

We’ll explain the basic operation of the heat pump in heating mode. If your heat pump can’t provide you with heat, however, you may need it repaired. Contact General Air Conditioning: we can assist you with your heat pump in Terrell Hills, TX so it does both the jobs for which it was designed.

A heat pump in heating mode

A heat pump isn’t much different than a standard air conditioner in operation: it moves heat from one location and puts it in another. When in cooling mode, it removes the heat from the indoors and puts it outdoors. But a heap pump contains a reversing valve, a mechanism that can change the direction of the flow of refrigerant through the unit. When the refrigerant’s direction changes, the heat pump switches the direction of the heat exchange as well: now it removes heat from the outdoors and moves it indoors.

Yes, there is enough heat outside, even in cold weather, for a heat pump to extract a sufficient amount to warm up your home. In Texas, heat pumps rarely need to struggle because of our mild winters. People in colder states often have to pair their heat pump with a back-up system for extremely cold weather.

Keep your heat pump working for you

If you don’t keep up regular maintenance on your heat pump, you can lose its great advantages. Make sure you sign up for a regular preventive maintenance program to have a professional give your system a thorough check-up and tune-up each year.

If you purchase the 4-star maintenance agreement from General Air Conditioning, you will receive two maintenance check-ups each year (one for your heater and the other for your air conditioner), and the second visit will be prepaid. We also offer other benefits with the agreement. Contact us today to start taking excellent care of your heat pump in Terrell Hills, TX.

Does the Size of My Heat Pump Matter?

Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

Does the size of my heat pump matter?” the short answer is “yes.” The size of your heater or air conditioning unit is one of the most important things about it, and you need to consider it very carefully before you install a new unit. Here in Alamo Heights TX, a heat pump installation is a fairly normal procedure, but you should have a good idea of exactly what you need before installing one. That includes knowing what size pump you need.

Heating and cooling capacity is measured in British Thermal Units or BTUs. As a general rule, you need about 30 BTUs of power to heat one square foot of living space. That should make it fairly easy to perform a rough estimate of what size heating pump you need. A trained heating technician can make a more accurate inspection and factor in such elements as sunlight exposure and insulation in your attic to perform a more accurate measurement.

General Air Conditioning can take care of your Alamo Heights, TX heat pump installation.

The reasons why are very important. We like to call it the Goldilocks rule: your heater should be neither too large nor too small but just right. If your heat pump is too small, you can see the problem. It will struggle to heat the area adequately, increasing the strain and the energy consumed without offering you a comfortable home in the bargain. But if the heat pump is too large, it’s going to experience similar problems. It will cycle on and off too often, increasing strain on the unit and expending unnecessary amounts of energy. Neither is an acceptable option. Only a unit sized just right for your space will do the job as intended.

In Alamo Heights, TX, heat pump installation services like General Air Conditioning can provide sound advice on the kind of heat pump that’s right for your home. We know that the size of your heat pump matters and we’re dedicated to making sure you have the perfect fit. When the time comes to install it, we perform the operation with skill and care. Pick up the phone today and call us to schedule an appointment, or check out our other services offered!

How to Find a New Heat Pump

Friday, June 21st, 2013

Like most homeowners, you probably use a home comfort system to maintain comfortable temperatures in your home throughout the year. Among savvy homeowners, heat pumps have become a more and more popular heating and cooling option. Because heat pumps transfer ambient heat from one area to another, they are able to keep your home comfortable with greater efficiency than many of their more traditional counterparts. Like any heating and air conditioning system, though, it is important that you find the right heat pump for your home to reap its full benefits. Here are a few tips from General Air Conditioning to make your San Antonio heat pump installation a real success.

First of all, it is important to understand that, while heat pumps are renowned for their efficiency, not all heat pumps operate as efficiently as others. That is why it is important to consider the energy efficiency ratings of the heat pump in question, just as you would any other HVAC system. There are 2 numbers that you must take into account, the SEER and the HSPF.

The SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) indicates how efficiently your heat pump will cool your home during the cooling season. The HSPF (heating season performance factor) reflects how efficiently it will heat your home. In both cases, you want to invest in a system with the highest ratings that you can afford. The most efficient heat pumps boast a SEER between 14 and 18, while a highly efficient HSPF falls between 8 and 10.

Of course, if your system is not properly sized for your home then you cannot really expect to get a great performance from it, regardless of its efficiency ratings. Have a professional heat pump technician determine how big your heat pump should be to operate as efficiently as possible. An undersized system will struggle to reach target temperatures, while an oversized system will do so too quickly. This will cause it to cycle on and off frequently, reducing efficiency while increasing the risk of damages.

To learn more about find the right heat pump for your home, contact General Air Conditioning. We are happy to help you keep your home comfortable as efficiently and reliably as possible. Call any time to speak with one of our San Antonio heat pump specialists.

How a Heat Pump Produces Heating and Cooling

Thursday, May 9th, 2013

A heat pump does just what it says it does. It pumps heat into and out of your home, depending on the time of year. This type of versatility makes it an ideal choice for homeowners in our service area, which is why we’d like to run you through the basics of what a heat pump is in this post. Whether you’re in the market for a comprehensive home comfort solution, or just curious about your options for when the time comes, we hope you find what follows useful. When you need San Antonio heat pump services, look no further than General Air Conditioning. Call us today!

  • How it works. A heat pump comprises two units: indoor evaporator/air handler and outdoor compressor/condenser. It basically works just like an air conditioner, but, of course, has the distinct option to heat as well as cool. In order to understand how it works, we’ll need to review the refrigerant cycle. Circulating through your heat pump is a refrigerant, which is chemically designed to undergo radical fluctuations of temperature under pressurized conditions. The compressor is the engine of the heat pump, providing the necessary pressure to heat the refrigerant up before it dissipates its thermal energy through the condenser coils. After this outdoor part of the cycle, it changes into a cool liquid form and cools the warm indoor air that the blower motor has extracted from the interior of your home. The entire process is reversed during the cold months.
  • Benefits. As we already mentioned, the primary benefit of a heat pump is that it works to both heat and cool your home within a single system. It integrates with your existing ductwork for year-round comfort. It also tends to be highly energy efficient, using less electrical energy than either an AC or a furnace. That said, it tends to be less efficient when operating in extreme temperatures. Speak to a professional to find out whether a heat pump is right for your home.

For comprehensive San Antonio heat pump services, from installation to maintenance, call General Air Conditioning today!