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Hauck Brothers

Thermostats

By | Commercial, Cooling, Heating, Home Monitoring, Residential, Thermostats, Uncategorized

In 2018 the Miami Valley probably used their heating and cooling systems a lot. According to Wunderground, we had 178 days with temperature highs below 60° Fahrenheit, and 108 days with temperature highs over 80° F. That means that for most people they could have their HVAC systems on over 75% of the time. It could be argued that the single, most important part, of any heating and cooling system is the control that operates the system. A low voltage thermostat is the main control for your building that determines how much heating or cooling will be delivered to satisfy the temperature set on the thermostat. Thermostats have advanced a long way in the past 10-20 years as much technology has. The focus for updating thermostats has been on energy savings, cleaner air, comfort, simplicity, quality, accessibility, and easy to understand information among other issues all related to customer satisfaction. Modern thermostats have a lot of features to appeal to everyone, from simple to read displays to utility savings a modern thermostat is an easy upgrade to add to your system to start saving money for years to come. According to First Energy, based on typical energy costs, a smart thermostat can save up to $145 a year. Models rated for Energy Star compliance offer rebates from utility companies as well.

How it Works

Whether a low voltage thermostat is old or new, the way it works is pretty similar even if the parts inside are not. A part of the thermostat is a way to measure the current temperature in the area it is installed, older models had bimetallic strips, while modern models use electronic controls to sense temperature changes. When the strip or thermistor registers a temperature below or above the set temperature it triggers the heating or cooling unit to turn on to maintain the temperature set. Programmable thermostats allow the user to preset temperatures, allowing them to change according to the owner’s programmed settings. Some of those programmed settings examples could be temperature set points at night, work, and vacations. Wi-Fi enabled thermostats allow the owner to check on their system wherever and whenever they like, assuming they have Wi-Fi and/or cellular service. Other features such as maintenance reminders, humidity level display, weather forecasts, energy reporting, zoning compatible, wireless room sensors, smart recovery, AC overcool to dehumidify, service alerts, and more can be found on certain thermostats.

Types

  • Non-Programmable – Non-Programmable thermostats can be mechanical or digital. To adjust the temperature or change from heating to cooling the owner would walk directly to the thermostat to make changes.
  • Programmable – Programmable thermostat come in a variety of programming options, some models makes changes for a week, some for weekdays and weekends, and some models offer more in-depth programmable options including each individual day. Once the thermostat is programmed the idea is that the owner would set up the thermostat according to their own comfort level and the thermostat would adjust on its own as needed, to the schedule you have programmed.
  • Wi-Fi – Wi-Fi thermostats or smart thermostats give the owner the option to not only program the thermostat but to have it adjust to you as well. With features like room sensors, occupancy sensor, and learning technology. These thermostats can adjust to your schedule inside the building. Some models can even change from heating to cooling or vice versa when needed to maintain the set temperature on the thermostat. These models can give even more features to the owner such as enhanced fan control, IAQ integration, weather forecasts, maintenance reminders, smart home/away, and more. A few of these models qualify for utility company rebates.
  • Communicating Controller – Available with variable speed equipment, communicating controllers allow the owner to be the most comfortable. With longer heating and cooling cycles at lower fan speeds, the air is better treated to ensure the best air quality and comfort possible. Other features include energy tracking and reporting, better humidity control, better dehumidification control, and multi-zone compatibility. These models can even alert Hauck Bros. of a major service issue as it happens so we can assist you as quickly as possible.

Comfort

Comfort starts with the thermostat and is backed up by the equipment and Indoor air quality products that maintain your personal comfort level. The thermostat is the control of comfort for your home or business. Depending on the model, the thermostat can save money via programming, provide ease of access with Wi-Fi, send reminders for maintenance alerts, learn to adjust to your comfort level on your schedule, manage humidity levels, and much more.

Features

  • AC Overcool, uses the condensing unit to reduce humidity by cooling your building beyond the desired temperature until the desired humidity level is reached in your home or business.
  • Auto change, also called Auto Mode, Allows the thermostat to switch from Heat to Cool or Cool to Heat automatically.
  • C-Wire, “Common” wire, enables 24 VAC power to the thermostat continuously.
  • Dual Fuel Capable, when a gas furnace and Heat Pump are used in a building. Allows the furnace to take over heating when the heat pump is inefficient.
  • Energy Star Qualified, required to work as a basic thermostat if on-line service is lost, provide information about HVAC energy usage, give residents feedback about energy consequences of changing settings, and provide the owner the ability to schedule or program. By adjusting the temperature down or up by 7-10 degrees from the normal setting owners can save up to 10% on heating and cooling costs.
  • Enhanced Fan Control, with a communicating controller, allows the user to adjust the continuous fan speed to low, medium, high, or off.
  • Thermostat Occupancy Sensor, indoor motion detecting sensor that can detect the presence of a person to automatically control the thermostat to adjust to a temperature preset setting.
  • Outdoor Air temperature Sensor, on select models of thermostats and zoning systems, provides outdoor air temperature information for the control system and the owner as well.
  • Thermostat Maintenance Reminder, certain models will remind owners to change the filter, ultraviolet light bulb, humidifier pad, and even the ventilator pre-filter
  • Thermostat Password Protection, certain models allow the owner to lockout the control by programming a password to prevent changes.
  • Programmable Thermostat, allows the user to schedule the thermostat to maximize home comfort and save money on utilities.
  • Self-Programming Thermostat, certain models learn what temperature you like and adjusts the schedule automatically
  • Service Safety Alerts, depending on the model some thermostats have the ability to notify you via your smart device, e-mail, and even send out an alert to your HVAC service provider when your HVAC system might be having an issue. Some examples of alerts are too high of humidity in the building, HVAC system not operational, and too high or too low of a temperature
  • Smart Home / Away, some models of thermostats have an occupancy sensor that detects when someone is home or not. These models have the ability to go into energy saving mode when you are away or to override the energy saving mode to ensure your comfort is met when you are home, regardless of the programming.
  • Smart Recovery, depending on the thermostat, some models have the ability to start cooling or heating your building so that at the time set for a certain temperature set point the temperature will already be at the set point.
  • Smart Speaker Compatible Thermostat, certain models of thermostats have the ability to be connected to your home automation provider. This allows the owner with proper registration to control the thermostat by voice or within that providers app.
  • Staging Settings, with multi speed HVAC equipment, having the proper thermostat to control the which stage the equipment is necessary. This allows the equipment to run in the lower stage or stages before going into higher stages.
  • Touchscreen, with technology improvements in thermostats, most modern digital thermostats come with a touchscreen, similar to that of a smart device.
  • Wi-Fi, A lot of modern thermostats have Wi-Fi capability. Wi-Fi allows the owner to control the thermostat from their smart device or within an app, keep the thermostat updated and secure, and help on energy savings.

 

Efficiency

Using a programmable thermostat in your building will let you run a scheduled heating and cooling program without having to manually adjust the settings throughout the day. Depending on the thermostat setting up a program can be done on the thermostat and if the thermostat is connected to an app or a smart device, it can be done on the computer or smart device. Adjusting the program to lower or allowing the temperature to rise by 7-10 degrees can save up to 10% in utility costs.

DIY

Make sure to check your thermostat once a year to ensure (depending on the model) that it is level, batteries are replaced (if applicable), and clear of dust and debris. It’s always a good idea to test the heating and cooling equipment before their season to ensure the thermostat is operational and the equipment responds as well. Some models with automatic reminders set up will need the reminders reset ex. change air filter or humidifier pad.

Service or Replace

The thermostat should be maintained and checked once a year, if it has no power, doesn’t respond to settings changes, heating or cooling won’t turn on, or loses its programming it might be time to consider a replacement. If your system is being replaced and it was over 15 years old and you would like to take advantage of the energy efficiency of a modern thermostat, replacement should be considered. Even if you have a programmable thermostat but you want the benefits of the features modern thermostats offer, consider replacement.

Accessories

  • Backplate, in some cases new thermostats are smaller than old thermostats, these backplates are needed to cover the space used by the old thermostat for cosmetic appeal.
  • Thermostat Cover, in some buildings commercial and residential, the thermostat needs to be protected and secured to limit access. A cover goes over the thermostat while providing airflow to the unit to ensure proper temperature control.
  • Room Sensor, some models of thermostats have the ability to have a wired or wireless room sensors connected to it. This allows for the user to adjust temperature based not only on the main thermostat but with input from the sensor as well. The most common options for sensors within the thermostat are to average the two or more temperature readings, use the sensor as the main temperature set point, and to follow the sensor wherever it is moved in the house to maintain the set point.

Humidifiers

By | Indoor Air Quality, Residential

In the Miami Valley, it can get cold enough to turn your furnace on in October and keep it on until April. That’s 7 months of heated air. Cooler air holds less moisture than hotter air. That means when it’s cold outside the relative humidity is generally low as well. For the human body, dry air can cause increased allergy symptoms and other respiratory problems. For the house or office, dry air can draw moisture out of materials inside the house, such as wood floors, furniture, pianos, and walls. The most effective way to treat your building is to add a humidifier to the air furnace system if possible. Different installation types can be used depending on the location of your furnace to ensure the best performance from your whole house humidifier. Adding a whole house humidifier controls how much moisture is added so you feel comfortable, but ensures that the humidifier shuts off so that too much moisture isn’t added. With seasonal maintenance, whole house humidifiers need little attention. Humidifiers can also save on energy costs as warm, moist air feels more comfortable and the thermostat can be turned down a few degrees without a loss of comfort.

How it Works

There are different types of whole house humidifiers available for a home or business. Each whole house humidifier uses the same method to deliver humidity to the air though the duct work connected to the furnace. They require water to create humidity, a water collection medium such as a evaporator pad or cartridge, airflow through the medium to create evaporation, a water control valve, and a humidistat device to control the humidity level.

Types

  • Bypass, offered in a traditional flow through or water saving model, traditionally can be used in buildings up to 4,000 square feet. These models can be mounted on either the warm air supply or return air side of any forced air furnace. The traditional flow through model would need access to a floor drain, while the water saving model does not.
  • Powered, uses a built-in fan which pulls in heated air directly from the furnace through the humidifier and can be used in buildings up to 4,200 square feet. These models work better than bypass humidifiers in tight quarters and are more efficient at adding humidity to the heated air. Powered humidifiers also work better with multi stage furnaces.
  • Steam, the most efficient type of whole house humidifier at adding moisture to the building. There are several different types of steam models available. Some models require filtered water and some require a cartridge with electrodes that needs replaced after the heating season. Steam whole house humidifiers can cover up to 6,200 square feet. Since they use steam and do not require a bypass they can be installed in tight quarters as well. Steam whole house humidifiers work extremely well with multi stage and variable speed furnaces. Steam whole house humidifiers don’t need the furnace on to run, since they create their own heat, a properly installed unit is able to work by itself.

Comfort

Humid air feels warmer than drier air feels at the same temperature for most people, making them feel more comfortable when the air outside is cold. This allows the owner to adjust the thermostat down and saves money on utility bills without sacrificing how comfortable they feel. Keeping the air humidity level, the same during the heating season keeps the air you breathe healthier as well. Whole house humidifiers can help with dry skin, itchy eyes, chapped lips, snoring, dry throat, and can reduce sinus problems.

Efficiency

According to EnergyStar.gov, a steam whole house humidifier saves $47-49 per year on electricity over a traditional whole house bypass and fan powered humidifiers. Assuming you keep your building between 30% and 60% relative humidity, the thermostat can be reduced a couple of degrees without losing any comfort, which can save up to 5% on your total bill for your furnace utilities.

DIY

Properly maintaining your humidifier is a major key for its operational success. Make sure the water and power are off to the humidifier before servicing. Change the water panel at least once per season. Make sure the orifices are clear of debris. Make sure the supply and drain line are clog free. Make sure the humidistat or thermostat is operational and calling for humidity when the furnace is running. Ensure the solenoid valve is functioning properly. Visually inspect the water lines to make sure there are no leaks. For certain steam models, make sure to change the cartridge after the heating season. Ensure that at the end of the heating season the humidifier is properly shut down to prevent mold and algae build up. We offer these tasks from service and as part of our Platinum Home Comfort Protection Plan.

Service or Replace

Depending on how often it is used and how well it is maintained, the lifespan of a whole house humidifier can be 15-20 years with proper maintenance and inspections. Most manufactures offer a 5- or 10-year warranty on parts and a one-year warranty on labor. After about 20 years, the parts can be hard to find and/or expensive. Newer models tend to be much more efficient at adding humidity to the building and more energy efficient, especially the whole house steam humidifiers.

Boilers

By | Boilers, Heating

In the Miami Valley, boilers still have a role to play in heating your house or business. Modern boilers heat and treat indoor air while being more energy efficient than older units. You can rely on the professionals at Hauck Bros., Inc. to install a boiler for the first time, replace an outdated or boiler, or service your current system. Since 1921, we proudly serve both residential and commercial customers with the industry’s leading equipment that will provide comfort for years to come.

How it works

A boiler is a sealed system that contains the combustion of fuel, including coal, oil, natural gas, and liquid propane to heat water. Boilers use hot water distributed throughout the building in pipes to provide heat a heat transfer. This allows for individual controlled heat to each room, or zoning.

Types

  • Fire Tube – Fire tube boilers confine the combustion process and gases in tubes and water circulates around these tubes. Some fire tube boilers have turbulators inside of the tubes to cause turbulence of the flue gases. This increases the heat absorption into the water which makes the boiler more efficient. They are generally used for medium to large boiler commercial/industrial applications. These boilers can be either steam or hot water boilers in low to medium pressure applications.
  • Water Tube – Water tube boilers have many different tubes inside of it that have water circulating through them. Hot combustion gases surround these tubes and an exchange of heat is realized. The heat exchange is between the combustion gases and the tubes and water. The water tube boilers can be built for higher capacities and pressures than the fire tube boilers because the steam and/or hot water is confined in the tubes. These boilers are generally found in medium to large commercial/industrial applications.
  • Steam Boiler – delivers hot steam to radiators and bring back cooled condensation into the boiler system to be reheated. Steam boiler need a pressure relief valve and a low water cutoff. Most steam boiler have manual valve to allow for added water to enter the system when needed.
  • Hot Water Boiler – use a series of pumps to circulate heated water through the building and into the radiators. Hot water boiler systems typically have an expansion tank.

Fuel Types

When it comes to boilers, the fuel type helps distinguish which type of boiler you may need and the features available to your setup as well. For most residential and commercial applications, natural gas, liquid propane, electric, and oil are the main source of fuel.

Comfort

Modern boilers have the ability to keep you comfortable during the heating season in a variety of ways. Some models are designed to be easy to service, with annual maintenance recommended on every boiler, having the unit easy to service makes it easier to repair a problem which could save you time and money. The more efficient the boiler the more it saves you on heating bills, especially over 15 years. Some models are quieter than others depending on the design and functionality.

Features

Efficiency

Older units have a rating of 56%-70% AFUE rating. Newer non-condensing units have a 80%-88% AFUE rating. Newer condensing units have an 89%-95% AFUE rating. Condensing units have a secondary heat exchanger for better efficiency. Based on the US National Average for 2017, an 80% AFUE unit would save over $7,500 vs a 60% AFUE over 15 years. A 90%+ AFUE unit would save over $10,000 over 15 years.

Combination Boiler

Traditional boilers and combination boiler share the same task of heating your home by going through your system to radiators or radiant floor systems where it provides heat to warm the air. Traditional boilers heat water in a tank on constantly, ready to provide heated water when needed. Combination boilers has no storage tank, it heats the water as needed and can provide hot water for the whole house, one source at a time. A combination boiler is great choice for a smaller building, with little need for constant hot water.

Ease of Service

Look for models that are easy to service to save time and money on annual maintenance charges. Make sure a certified technician proves annual maintenance to avoid breakdowns and extend the life of the boiler.

Heat Exchanger

When doing a replacement or refurbishment project, the existing heating design dictates what can and cannot be done. New construction or builds offer more freedom in the heating design, but can be more restrictive on building regulations. There are 4 different main heat exchangers to choose from.
1. Cast Iron, heavy, but not easy to break, cast iron feature a sectional heat exchanger design. Ideal for replacements due to their ability debris from the older system. Tend to not be energy efficient unless they have a secondary heat exchanger that enables the boiler to condense.
2. Aluminum, lightweight and excellent at heat transfers, they can be used with other materials to enhance their overall strength. Good water quality must be provided to avoid corrosion.
3. Stainless steel, heavier and able to take more corrosive water. Grade 316 is the most common type, which allows for good welding and heat transfer properties
4. Steel and Tube, used in higher output systems. They can corrode easily, and our not suitable for condensing without a secondary heat exchanger. Usually used in commercial and industrial type buildings.

Energy Efficiency

For residential units under 300,00 BTUH of input, boiler efficiency is measure by AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency). AFUE is a calculated efficiency which attempts to estimate how well the boiler coverts the energy in its fuel to heat over the course of one year. Simply put, older furnaces had as low as a 56% AFUE rating, there are models today that can get above a 95% AFUE rating. The higher the AFUE the more efficient the unit is, this saves money on utility bills in the future. Based on the US National Average for 2017, an 80% AFUE unit would save over $7,500 vs a 60% AFUE over 15 years. A 90%+ AFUE unit would save over $10,000 over 15 years.

DIY

Boilers need regular maintenance to prevent breakdowns and, in some cases, to keep the warranty valid and active. There are some simple checks you can do to make sure your boiler stays out of trouble.

  • Make sure all air vents are working, not blocked, and clear of debris around them on the interior and exterior of the building.
  • Make sure to check the water level, if it operates without water the boiler could be seriously damaged.
  • Make sure the pilot light is light (if applicable)
  • Check for leaks and cracks
  • Keep the room the boiler is in as dust free as possible

If you are uncomfortable doing any of these tasks, please contact us at 937-325-0636 or fill out this form and we will reach out to you within 24 hours.

Service

Boilers need regular maintenance once a year. There are two great reasons to have a boiler maintained annually. First, having an annual maintenance check done helps prevents sudden failures. Second, some manufactures require annual maintenance to keep their warranties valid. During the inspection our technician will check shut off valves to ensure they are working properly, check the refractory, check for cracks, check the controls, check indicators, and safety devices to ensure they are all working properly. The technician will also inspect the fuel feed systems and clean the burners to ensure they are working properly.

Signs your boiler may need replaced

  1. Increased failure rate of the boiler
  2. Yellow flames on gas burners and black soot on oil boilers, indicates the fuel is not burning properly, this can create carbon dioxide.
  3. Leakage, if the boiler needs more water to run than it might have a leak. Consider replacing before flooding occurs.
  4. Age, most condensing boilers last for 15+ years, cast iron 20-30 years, with proper annual maintenance by a licensed technician.
  5. Energy use, older boilers are not as energy efficient as modern boilers
  6. Comfort, if your building starts to have hot or cold spots in areas that it didn’t before, it could be that the unit is not operating as efficiently as it once did.

Furnaces

By | Heating

In the Miami Valley, a reliable furnace is a necessity.  Modern furnaces’ equipment heats and treats indoor air while being more energy efficient than older units.  You can rely on the professionals at Hauck Bros., Inc. to install a new furnace for the first time, replace an outdated furnace, or service your current system. Since 1921, we proudly serve both residential and commercial customers with the industry’s leading equipment that will provide comfort for years to come.

How it works

Depending on the fuel type, natural gas, liquid propane, electric, or oil, a furnace operates using forced air to transfer heat to air.  The blower then sends that air throughout the connected duct work into the house or business, and then out through the vents.  In a natural gas, oil, and liquid propane furnace, a pilot light ignites a series of burners inside the combustion chamber. The heat created from the burner enters the heat exchanger and transfers the heat to the air while raising the temperature set at the thermostat. The blower then takes the air and sends it through the ducts.  An electric furnace uses an electrical ignition source instead of a pilot light to start the heating process. An electric furnace has conductive coils that work to heat the air for the blower to use in heating.

Types

Fuel Types

  • Oil, with AFUE ratings up to 86.6% efficiency, and some other models offer variable speed operation. Oil furnaces provide dependable heat and can be paired with a heat pump or an air conditioner to provide maximum comfort throughout the year. Offering flexible installation options, oil furnaces come in traditional multi-poise models or low boy models.
  • Gas, Natural Gas or Liquid Propane, with AFUE Ratings up to 98.3% and a model with modulating gas valves and a variable speed fan, gas furnaces provide dependable heat and can be paired with a heat pump or an air conditioner to provide maximum comfort throughout the year. These models can be installed vertically or horizontally to accommodate various installation needs.
  • Electric, available as an all-electric furnace or an air handler with electric strips paired with a heat pump. These models can come with Variable Speed operation and paired with a heat pump can provide maximum comfort throughout the year. These models can be installed vertically or horizontally to accommodate various installation needs. Heat strips can be used in an air handler paired with a heat pump to serve as a back up to the heat pump for extreme cold situations.
  • Available in:
    • Single Stage
      • A single stage unit turns on when indoor temperatures exceed the temperature setting on your thermostat. Once the temperature set on the thermostat is reached it turns off again. Single stage furnaces always operate at 100% capacity.
    • Two Stage
      • More efficient than single stage units, these units vary their output between two levels: high and low. Ideally, the low stage would satisfy the thermostat most of the time. When necessary, the high stage would turn on. This helps eliminate temperature swings and helps to better condition the air, making you feel more comfortable for longer periods of time.
    • Variable Speed
      • Variable speed units precisely control the airflow throughout your home in order to maintain the highest level of comfort. This allows the unit to run continuously, while consuming far less electricity than a single stage unit. The constant airflow has some key benefits, maximum conditioning and treatment of the air, less hot and cold drafts, and quieter operation.

Comfort

Furnaces play a big role in keeping home and businesses comfortable during cold days. Being able to raise the temperature inside allows for people to stay warm and comfortable.

The temperature that feels comfortable may be different for everyone. With variable speed furnaces, having the air move constantly allows for better dehumidification during the cooling season when paired with an air conditioner or a heat pump and better humidification when paired with a humidifier during the heating season. Variable speed fans help better filtration and the lessening of hot and cold spots as well. Even with two-speed operation, having the low speed on the majority of the time makes the treated air feel more comfortable.

Features

Variable speed ECM Blower, the variable speed electronically commutated blower precisely and efficiently controls the flow of heated or cooled air throughout your home via ductwork. This allows for better airflow that reduces temperature swings as well as constantly treating the air for filtration and humidity management.

Multi Speed ECM Blower, the multi speed electronically commutated blower can also adjust airflow like a variable speed blower but less precisely.  They have up to 5 speeds available that change based on your airflow needs.

PSC blower, the permanent split capacitor blower does not adjust airflow. It is set to one speed and operates at that speed 100% of the time.

Modulating Gas Valve, found in the most efficient gas furnaces, the modulating gas valve allows for better comfort by turning on more frequently but at a lower stages to condition the air before 100% capacity is needed.

Energy Efficiency

The efficiency of furnaces is measured by Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE). AFUE is a measure of how efficient the unit is in converting energy from its fuel source to heat over the course of a typical year. AFUE is the ratio of annual heat output of the furnace compared to the annual fossil fuel energy consumed by a furnace. An AFUE rating of 95% means that 95% of the energy in the fuel type becomes heat for the building and the other 5% escapes to the outside of the building through the ventilation system. Electric furnaces installed inside a building have zero loss.  The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires all new furnaces to display their AFUE ratings so consumers can compare their different efficiencies.

Older units have a rating of 56%-70% AFUE rating. Newer non-condensing units have a 80%-83% AFUE rating. Newer condensing units have an 90%-98.5% AFUE rating. Condensing units have a secondary heat exchanger for better efficiency. Based on the US National Average for 2017, an 80% AFUE unit would save over $7,500 vs a 60% AFUE over 15 years.  A 90%+ AFUE unit would save over $10,000 over 15 years.

DIY

  • Check to make sure the furnace pilot light is on, if not lit re-light according the manufacturer owners manual.
  • Make sure all return and supply registers are clean and unobstructed.
  • Make sure to check and change or clean the air filter, on some models at least once a month.
  • Make sure the area around the furnace is clear of debris and combustible materials.
  • Check your thermostat and turn to heat to make sure it comes on.
  • Check to make sure your Oil or Liquid Propane tanks are full. Generally, they are cheaper to fill during the cooling season than the heating season.

Service

With normal maintenance and care, furnaces can last over 20 years!  Our experienced technicians can help you maintain the life of your equipment by performing a Home Comfort Protection Plan check on your furnace. Some inspections the technician will perform are checking the air filter, blower motor, blower wheel, transformer, gas leaks, flame sensor, thermostat, and more!

Contact Us!

Mini Splits/Ductless Systems

By | Cooling, Duct Free Systems, Heating

How it works

There are a lot of applications that a ductless system can be used for In the Miami Valley. Mini split systems can be used for alleviating a hot or cold spot, help heat and cool a renovation or new construction, and even provide comfort for light commercial use. With many types of installation options available there aren’t many situations that a ductless system can’t help with.

Similar to standard air-source heats pumps, mini split systems have two main components, an outdoor condensing unit and an indoor air-handling unit. The link between the two units is called the conduit, it houses the power cable, refrigerant tubing, suction tubing, and a condensate drain. Ductless systems are available where no ductwork is needed while ducted mini split systems can use little ductwork in the ceiling or below the floor. The unit or units will operate to reach the temperature set on either thermostat or remote control. Some models can be controlled via a smart device as well.

Types

With many different application types and installation options their are a lot of options available:

Outdoor Units

  • Single Zoned Cooling Only, designed to provide a high comfort level to a single room for cooling purposes only while being energy efficient (up to 24.6 SEER) and very quiet (low as 48 dB).
  • Single Zoned Cooling and Heating, designed to provide a high comfort level to a single room for cooling and heating purposes year-round. Some models are designed to provide outstanding heating performance even in extreme cold. Models can be energy efficient (up to 42 SEER & 15 HSPF), quiet (as low as 47 dB),
  • Multi Zoned Cooling and Heating, Designed for whole building comfort for cooling and heating purposes. One outdoor unit can support up to 8 indoor units and each zone can be individually controlled to meet personal comfort needs. Units can be energy efficient (up to 23.8 SEER & 12 HSPF) and quiet, (as low as 49 dB)

Indoor Units

  • Wall Mounted, designed to provide cooling and heating to an individual room while monitoring room conditions and self-adjusting the fan for ideal personal comfort. Units can be very energy efficient (up to 33.1 SEER & 13.5 HSPF) and quiet (as low as 19 dB), cooling only, and available in 3 speed or 5 speed fan speeds.
  • Horizontal Ducted, designed to use ductwork which can be concealed in the ceiling or below the floor. Ideal for new construction or renovations. Units can be energy efficient (up to 19.6 SEER & 12.1 HSPF), quiet (as low as 23 dB) with 3 fan speeds.
  • Ceiling Cassette, designed to fit between standard 16” joists to provide cooling and heating to one area. Great option for renovations, new construction, and light commercial. Units can be energy efficient with SEER Ratings up to 19.6 and HSPF up to 12.1 while be quiet with Db levels as low as 24, with 3 fan speeds
  • Floor Mounted, designed to fit in rooms with little vertical wall height where a wall unit or ceiling unit will not fit to provide a room with cooling and heating. Units can be energy efficient with up to 28.2 SEER and up to 13.6 HSPF, while being quiet with dB rating as low as 21, with 5 fan speeds.
  • Ducted Air Handler, designed to accommodate new construction, renovations, replacements, and light commercial to provide heating and cooling through ductwork. Can be installed vertically or horizontally. Can be broken down to fit through tight access points and reassembled. Units can be energy efficient with SEER ratings up to 21.4 and HSPF up to 10.4 while be quiet with dB levels as low as 27 with 3 fan speeds.

Comfort

Mini split systems are designed to offer cooling and heating to rooms or areas to provide comfort to occupants. Designed to be energy efficient, easy to install, quiet, and easily adjustable to provide year-round comfort to make your living space comfort what you want it to be.

Features

Indoor Air Quality (IAQ), mini splits are designed to treat the air in the area in which it installed. Filters are installed on all indoor units and some models can capture and remove allergens, odors, and other contaminants to make your air clean and keep you healthy.

Extreme Low Temperature Heating, some models are designed to provide comfortable indoor temperatures even during the coldest days (as low as -13 degree F)

Quiet, without ductwork or with little ductwork mini split systems are designed to deliver cooling and heating directly to the rooms they are intended to serve which means there is no need for fans, keeping the noise down, outdoor units as low as 48 dB and indoor units as low as 19 dB.

Energy Efficiency

SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating) is a ratio of the amount of cooling produced (BTU) divided by the amount of electricity (watts) used. The difference between SEER and EER is that SEER accounts for changes in outside temperature instead of just one temperature. EER should be used as a comparison when the outside temperature is consistently over 95 degrees F.

The higher the SEER the greater the heat pump’s efficiency could be. Generally, most single stage heat pumps rate from 14 to 16 SEER. Two Stage units rate from 17 to 19. Variable speed units rate from 18 to 21. Comparing against a 10 SEER heat pump over 15 years*, a 14 SEER could save $1395, a 16 SEER could save $1,830, and a 21 SEER could save $2,550.

HSPF (High Seasonal Performance Factor) represents the total heating output of a heat pump (including supplementary electric heat) during the normal heating season (in BTU) as compared to the total electricity consumed (in watt-hours) during the same period.

DIY

With normal maintenance and care mini split systems can last over 20 years. Make sure to keep the filters and coils clean. Make sure the outdoor unit is free from obstruction and the unit is free of debris. Check the drain pan to ensure it stays clear of moisture. Inspect the refrigerant lines, visually confirming the lines are insulated and not damaged.

Service

Our experienced technicians can help you maintain the life of your equipment by performing a HCPP check on your mini split system. Some checks the technician will perform are refrigerant levels, ensure the coils are clean, check the drain pan, check the entire outdoor unit, inspect the refrigerant lines, and ensure the units are set to manufactures specifications. Contact us today to schedule a consultation!

Home Protection & Monitoring

By | Home Monitoring, Residential

In the Miami Valley, most homes and businesses have both heating and cooling systems installed to keep the occupants comfortable year-round.  There are many risks out there that can threaten the safety of your family or business; fire, flooding, carbon monoxide, debris, animals, freezing temperatures, intruders, brownouts, and surges are just some of the risks of owning a home or business. There are many products out there that are designed to keep everyone protected and safe. There are other products that will keep the HVAC equipment safe, in better working order, and hopefully maximize the life of that equipment.  Products that offer monitoring, are designed to alert the owner of problems around the clock, even if you are not home, all through a common smart device like a tablet or cell phone. Smart security measures are vital to guarding your home or business and keeping all the occupants safe and comfortable.  Here are some of the products we offer and what they protect:

Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors

Fact: About 3,400 Americans die each year in fires and about 17,500 are injured.

Fact: A fifty percent reduction in fire fatalities since the introduction of smoke alarms into the home

Offered as stand-alone units or combination units, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are critical equipment for any home or business.  Ohio guidelines for residential smoke detectors is that for new construction of homes every level of the house needs a smoke detector and all occupied sleep areas need one as well. Ohio guidelines for commercial smoke detectors is that for most systems in a commercial setting with a design capacity greater than 2,000 cfm return air, they are required to be installed. For commercial purposes, duct mounted smoke detectors are common.

Fact:  replace smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors every 7-10 years.

Fact: In just two minutes, a fire can become life-threatening. In five minutes, a residence can be engulfed in flames.

Fact:  Each year, more than 400 Americans die from unintentional CO poisoning not linked to fires, more than 20,000 visit the emergency room, and more than 4,000 are hospitalized.

Combination alarms save space, money, and time. You’ll only have to change the batteries once a year for one device and replace that device every 7-10 years, depending on manufacture guidelines. Some models of smart detectors have voice warnings that tell the owner where and what the problem is. Smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are available as well. They can even alert your smart device of a problem, protecting even while you are away.  There are other features that matter and help, some models test themselves, have night lights built in, can tell the difference between steam and smoke, and can be quieted by a smart device.

Water and Freeze Sensor

Leaks and frozen pipes can cause serious damage to your home or business. Water and freeze sensors can be used to get an early alert of an issue before it turns into a disaster. Placed around water sources inside the house, they will alert you to a problem as it occurs.  Smart water and freeze sensors can be connected to your smart device that monitor and inform you of problems even if you are not there. Multiple sensors can be installed to the network to pinpoint problems as well.

Surge Protector

Make sure your furnace, air handler, air conditioner, heat pump, boiler, and ductless mini split system are protected from damage due to surges. There are two main ways surges occur in your system, lightning and switching surges. Lightning surges are random events, but switching surges can occur every day from normal use of common appliance to normal operations of the power company. Both types of surges are able to be protected against. We recommend all appliances and electronics in your home or business be protected from surges. Your heating and cooling system can be protected by an additional add on surge protector. Some models offer connected equipment warranties as well to cover losses from surges.

Wi-Fi Thermostat

A thermostat’s basic function is to regulate the heating and cooling system by sensing the temperature and performing a heating or cooling action to maintain that set temperature. Wi-Fi connected thermostats offer additional features to monitor and protect your home or business. When properly set up, some smart wi-fi thermostats can monitor and inform the owner of issues such as indoor freezing temperatures, filter replacement needed, service reminders, and even equipment failure.

Additional Protection Accessories

Hauck Bros., Inc. offers other accessories that can be used in conjunction with your heating and cooling system to protect and monitor your home or business. Line set covers, air conditioner covers, air filtration systems, home automation products, wind baffles, hard start kits, and condensate pumps are a few of the accessories that can be added to protect your equipment. Need some more recommendations from our professionals?  Schedule a consultation today!

Air Conditioning Accessories – Part 2

By | Cooling, Residential

Last week, we talked about a few accessories to help keep your air conditioning unit running optimally during the summer months. Here are a few more!

Cover

How it works – Air conditioners are covered during the fall, winter, and spring to protect from the elements and the environment/ Harsh weather, ultraviolet rays, flying debris, ice, and snow.

Features – Protects unit from top to bottom, removes damaging condensation, anti cold cracking material, uv protected, fire retardant, mildew and fungus free, 10 warranty

Condensate pump

How it works –  In HVAC or refrigeration process, the water that condensate need to be channeled out from the building to proper drainage outside the building. The condensation process usually occurred when the air passes though the cold evaporator coil during the cooling process. As a result, the moisture that accumulate on the coil then drip down into the drain pan that is placed underneath the coils. Systems that are able to use the gravitational force to flow the water that accumulate on the drain pan does not require the use of the pump. However, there are many instances when the air conditioning systems require to use of this pump to get the water out to prevent the water from dripping into the space.

Hard start kit

How it works – Is an electrical component that is attached to the condensing unit of the air conditioner. This device allows the compressor to start up quickly and use less power during the process. It ultimately lets you save money on your energy bill. A hard start kit is a combination of a relay and a start capacitor. When the air conditioner starts up, the relay is on. This means that the energy being stored in the capacitor is being used to power the compressor. The relay then reads the electrical current from the compressor and upon arriving at a certain level or when the compressor is fully running, the relay is turned off or rendered out of the circuit. This action renders the start capacitor no longer needed to aid the compressor.

Have questions about keeping your unit running smoothly? Give us a call to schedule a consultation!

Air Conditioning Accessories, Part 1

By | Cooling, Residential

Air conditioning units do a great job of keeping your home comfortable, but they need a little TLC too.  Below are some accessories to keep your unit running optimally all summer.

Pads

The air conditioning condenser vibrates with continual use on the same surface over a period of time, it can sink into the ground or cause damage to the unit. That is why everyone needs a good AC condenser pad to help support and contain the unit over time This expensive piece of equipment needs to be properly supported. To help the unit survive harsh winters or summers a quality waterproof pad is essential. Condensers also accumulate water as it does its job making them weigh even more. This can put significant strain on the lines and tubes that run underneath the unit. It is crucial that the unit stay dry as well as level to extend the equipment’s lifespan and functionality.

Types of Pad

Hauck Brothers offers concrete or composite pads. Units installed on concrete pads are solidly anchored on a waterproof base. Water drains easily through vents on the bottom of the unit. Early condensers were installed on several inches of concrete to support their large size. Cement is still a favorite pad for large-capacity units. Composite , As units decreased in size, new materials were developed using green materials. These pads are inexpensive enough that homeowners can purchase new bases when new units are installed. Newer pads, formed of recycled plastic formed into pads sized to fit standard bases, are UV stable, rendering them impervious to sunlight and rain that turn most plastics brittle. Engineered, ribbed surfaces, distribute weight and cushion against vibration.

Sound blanket

While air conditioners and heat pumps may be ideal for cleaning the air in our houses and cooling or heating it, some compressors are extremely noisy. If your compressor is waking you in the middle of the night when it comes on, there is a way to reduce that noise up to 40 percent or more. Installing a compressor sound blanket can be a quick solution for air conditioner and heat pump compressors that have an unacceptable noise level. These blankets do not diminish compressor effectiveness or harm them in any way.

High and Low Pressure Switches

The high-pressure switch will kill the compressor circuit if the pressure exceeds the rating on the pressure switch. The ratings will vary depending on the type of refrigerant the air conditioner or heat pump uses the system. The low-pressure switch is typically an automatic reset switch that will reset itself when the pressure on the low-pressure side of the refrigeration systems returns to normal or above the setting on the switch. When a refrigeration system operates at lower than normal pressures the system can freeze up with the freezing beginning at the evaporator coil and working its way back to the compressor via the suction line. Freezing of the refrigeration system is bad and lead to liquid refrigerant slugging in the compressor which can lead to compressor failure.

Want to be sure your air conditioner is running the best it can?  Schedule a consultation with our certified technicians today!

Lineset

By | Cooling, Residential

The lineset is made of copper piping that carries refrigerant from the condenser outside to the evaporator coil inside, then back again. It consists of a smaller liquid line for high-pressure liquid refrigerant, and a larger suction line for hot, low-pressure gaseous refrigerant.

How it works

The lineset for an HVAC system is closed to prevent refrigerant from entering or leaving the system at any point, unless there is a leak or the pressures are being adjusted by a qualified service technician.

Reuse old or replace?

  • Reuse – A lineset may be reused if all of the following items are verified:
    • Have a certified professional verify that it was not leaking.
    • The manufacturer of the new unit allows that size lineset per specifications and it doesn’t exceed their vertical distance.
    • It may run somewhere hard to access such as walls and slabs.
    • If the old lineset is to be used, it needs to be cleaned out by a professional.
  • Replace – If the old line had a leak, possibly if it used R-22, is kinked anywhere, and if the vertical limit exceeds the manufacturers specification, a new lineset is needed.

Protect

It is important to make sure that the lineset is insulated and secured in a fashion that will not allow it to be moved easily. For the exterior of the house, products can be used to cover the lineset that make it blend in to the house.

DIY

It is good to visually inspect the lineset insulation outside to make sure it is secure and well maintained throughout the course of the year. Cover up the lineset to protect from elements.

Have any questions about your air conditioning unit?  Contact us today!

Evaporator Coils

By | Cooling, Heat Pumps, Heating, Residential

An evaporator coil is the part of an air conditioner or heat pump that absorbs the heat from the air in your house. It is located inside the air handler or attached to the furnace.

How it works

Located inside the blower compartment or air handler, the evaporator coil holds the chilled refrigerant that the compressor moves into it.  As the air from the blower fan moves over the coil, the cold refrigerant removes the heat from your home’s air. The refrigerant becomes warmer and travels to the condenser coil outdoors.

With a heat pump, the process reverses in the winter and the evaporator coil expels heat from the refrigerant into your home, instead of absorbing it and taking it outdoors. Most heat pumps have auxiliary heating elements that are part of the evaporator coil components to supply heat when temperatures fall below a certain point.

Types

  • A-Coils – Shaped like an A, produce better airflow which allows for the most efficient airflow allowing for high efficiency ratings.
  • N-Coils – Shaped like an N, are more compact than A-coils and are better suited for tighter applications.
  • Slab Coil – When the coil has to be installed horizontally, these are preferred.

Features

  • ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND, ENERGY-EFFICIENT – Bryant® Preferred™ Series aluminum evaporator coils are designed for use with Puron® refrigerant to provide years of environmentally sound, trouble-free performance.
  • ENHANCED COMFORT – Our Thermostatic Expansion Valve (TXV) ensures proper refrigerant flow during fluctuating pressures and conditions for top reliability and energy-efficient operation.
  • DURABILITY AND DRAINAGE – Our base pan is made of a corrosion-resistant composite material. Integrated sloped drainage helps reduce build-up of mold, bacteria and other airborne pollutants.
  • LASTING LOOKS AND PERFORMANCE – The sturdy cabinet on our cased models is painted to match your Bryant® furnace to provide years of scratch resistant good looks. (Models CAPVP, CAPMP, CNPVP, CNPHP, CSPHP)
  • LONGER LIFE – Bryant advancements in aluminum manufacturing technology result in higher product reliability.

What system is best for you and your family? Contact us for a consultation today or call 937-325-0636!

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