We have answers for your frequently asked questions. Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning in Buellton can answer all your HVAC-related questions. Before you get on the phone, browse these to see if we already responded to your question online. If you don’t see your question listed or want more information on a topic, give us a call at 805-242-9638. Our experts can provide the information you’re looking for in a jiffy. Why is regular maintenance important? Just like you need to take your car in to the shop for normal tune-ups, such as oil changes or checking out probable problems, your home comfort system should be subject to the same kind of attention. Scheduled maintenance by a trained technician provides a variety of benefits to your HVAC equipment, which can help your systems work efficiently and prevent costly breakdowns. How much will a Lennox product cost? Call Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning at 805-242-9638 to get a comprehensive quote on Lennox equipment. What is two-stage heating? With two-stage heating, furnaces may work on two different levels: high and low. Since you can heat your home on the low setting a lot of the time, a two-stage furnace can operate longer and more efficiently. Two-stage heating also runs more quietly than traditional furnaces and can give you more even heat distribution and fewer temperature swings. How does Precise Comfort™ technology work? Lennox’s Precise Comfort™ technology is an operating and control system that enables a furnace to adjust heat and airflow by incredibly small amounts, as low as a 1 percent change. The system is automatic and runs similar to cruise control, making adjustments gradually to meet your comfort demands with energy efficiency. How will my new furnace work differently from my old one? Depending on how old your previous furnace was, you could experience a variety of differences. Furnaces today are developed to offer more even and efficient heating than ever before. Modern furnaces also better regulate temperature and air flow, moving more air over the heat exchanger than older furnaces. Additionally, new furnaces are created to integrate with other high-efficiency HVAC products, such as air conditioners. The air conditioner blowers give your heating system an extra bump so it can deliver cool air around your home efficiently. Special features like variable speed motors will also help reduce noise associated with operating your equipment and easily meet your family’s airflow needs. What energy efficiency standard should I look for in an air conditioner in Buellton? The Department of Energy recently increased the minimum efficiency levels for air conditioners, heat pumps and packaged units created after Jan. 1, 2015, since heating and cooling contributes significantly to a home’s total energy usage. The requirements vary by region, so call Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning for the efficiency standards for Buellton. How can I reduce my energy costs? Heating and cooling makes up a large portion of your monthly utility bill. Purchasing HVAC equipment with high efficiency ratings, such as SEER for air conditioners and AFUE for furnaces, is a simple step that can go a long way in lowering energy output. Beyond these ratings, also ponder: Routine maintenance – regularly having a professional tune-up your equipment will keep it working at its peak potential. Adding a zoning system – by focusing your heating and cooling on the rooms you use most frequently, you won’t have to pay to heat or cool areas of your home that aren’t used often. Installing a programmable thermostat – the Department of Energy estimates that a programmable thermostat can lower heating costs by up to 35 percent and cooling costs by up to 25 percent. Leave it up to your thermostat to turn down the heat when you’re away and bring it back up to your preferred temperature when you’re home. Why should I buy from Lennox? There are various reasons to pick Lennox, but the top three are: You know and trust the name – Lennox is recognized around the world for its quality home comfort products. Innovation and high quality – Lennox is an industry leader, offering a large line of innovative solutions for your home comfort needs. Commitment to excellence – We are dedicated to providing customers not only quality products, but also quality service. You can trust Lennox dealers, like those of us at Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning, to help you identify the right system for your home, expertly install it, and keep it operating smoothly every time. What can I do to improve my home’s indoor air quality? Boosting your home’s indoor air quality starts with four basic strategies: Eliminate – poor indoor air quality leaves your home full of with air pollutants floating around your home, so to improve IAQ, the first step is to rid as many pollutants as possible. You can easily do this is by cleaning and vacuuming at least once a week, regularly washing linens and storing cleaning products safely. Ventilate – proper insulation is great for keeping your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer, but it also makes it harder for airborne pollutants to escape. Products like our Healthy Climate® ventilation system help exchange stale air for fresh, filtered outside air. Clean – good ventilation and regular cleaning are a start, but Healthy Climate® air filters, germicidal lights and PureAire™ purification systems take your IAQ to the next level by picking up microscopic particles, killing germs and removing particles and germs while destroying chemical vapors. Monitor – programmable thermostats will help you control the humidity levels and temperature to help prevent particles and germs from piling up and keep your home comfortable. How can I find out which indoor air quality product will is right for my home? Our Healthy Solution Finder lets you choose details specific to your family and home and will help you find equipment best suited to meet your needs. You may also consult with Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning experts who can make a recommendation based on their evaluations of your home and your current indoor comfort system. How does an air conditioner work? You might be surprised to know that air conditioners don’t technically make your home cooler; they actually remove the hot air and transfer it outside. This hot air moves across a refrigerant coil on the indoor unit and then is sent to the outdoor unit where it is released. Your air conditioner moves as much hot air outside as is necessary to reach the temperature you have set on your thermostat. What is the minimum energy efficiency standard for air conditioners in my state? Minimum energy efficiency standards can vary by geographic location. Additionally, air conditioners, heat pumps and packaged units made after Jan. 1, 2015, have higher minimum efficiency levels than products manufactured prior to that date. The team at Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning can help you figure out the minimum requirements for Buellton, let you know if your current equipment meets those requirements or help you find a replacement air conditioner that does. How can I confirm the model and serial numbers for my cooling unit? Your system’s service panel has a white label on it, with your system’s model and serial numbers at the top. M/N stands for model number and S/N is the serial number. What size equipment do I need for my home? Since equipment size needs differ for each home, the best way to figure out the right size equipment for your home is to have a technician from Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning come out to perform load calculation tests. The tests take factors such as square footage, insulation value and amount, and more into account to determine your home’s HVAC equipment needs. Can frost, ice, dirt or other debris keep the outdoor unit of my cooling system from operating effectively? Yes – debris can limit your system’s ability to function effectively. It’s not uncommon for heat pumps to have frost or ice on them in the winter, but many include defrost controls so they can work efficiently regardless of the weather conditions. What is two-stage cooling? When an air conditioner uses two-stage cooling, it means that there are two levels of operation. This lets the system work more efficiently since there is one level for milder weather and a second for harsher weather that demands the system work harder. Two-stage cooling also enables slight temperature changes so you don’t experience extreme differences in temperature. Aside from better efficiency, other benefits of two-stage cooling include quieter operation and better humidity control. Why is my system freezing up? When your cooling unit freezes up, there are a couple of reasons why it could be doing so. The most common reasons include: dirty filters, low refrigerant, a dirty evaporative coil and a faulty blower motor or relay. A dirty filter is something you can fix as a homeowner, but the others need to be fixed by a professional like those at Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning. Contact them at 805-242-9638 with any additional questions. What is the best thermostat to use for my cooling system? Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning offers a number of great thermostat options for your HVAC systems. The best thermostat for you will depend on a couple variables, such as whether you want one that’s programmable or not. No matter what kind of thermostat you’d like – or if you’re looking for something that can fit with a home automation system – call Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning to hear about which thermostats you can choose from. Our team will help you find one that’s right for your system, your family’s needs and your budget. What is a heat pump? A heat pump can tackle both your home’s heating and cooling needs, offering you one HVAC system that can be used year-round. In the warmer months, heat pumps act like an air conditioner, capturing the hot air from inside your home and directing it outside; in the cooler months, this process is reversed. Heat pumps can be very energy efficient and may produce two to three times more heat than the energy it uses. When replacing the outdoor unit, should the indoor unit also be replaced? At Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning, we do recommend replacing both your indoor and outdoor units at the same time because: Outdoor systems are now built to work with their matching indoor system for the most efficiency. When you replace only one of your systems, you may not see the same savings on your energy bills as if you had replaced them together. Thanks to technological advancements, newer systems mean better efficiency. This is also true for HVAC systems. While the advancements focus on higher heating and cooling efficiency, they also include benefits such as better air handling, filtering and noise reduction. If your heating and cooling systems are more than 10 years old, they need to be replaced. Older models have outdated technology that is likely adding to your energy costs due to poor efficiency. So by replacing your indoor system at the same time as your outdoor equipment, both your systems will provide better energy efficiency that helps you decrease your energy bills and keep your home more comfortable. Is it possible to see whether my solar HVAC system is performing at its highest potential? Yes. Your SunSource® Home Energy System has a communication module that sends the system’s performance data to a website. The website shows your system’s status, energy production and environmental benefits, as well as carbon offsets in real time. Does the SunSource® communication module use an Internet connection? Yes, you will need an Internet connection if you want to use the system’s online monitoring system. The system lets you view energy production and environmental information. The monitoring service is provided free for five years, and the performance-monitoring website is offered by an independent third party, Enphase Energy Inc. Do I need to clean off my solar modules? Rain will clean the modules by itself in most areas; however, if you live in a dusty area, you might see improved performance after periodically spraying the modules with water. Please note that high-pressure hoses and detergents should never be used to clean solar modules, as they can damage the product. Which thermostat is best for my HVAC system? Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning can help suggest the right thermostat for you based on your home and current heating and cooling equipment. We have a selection of programmable and nonprogrammable thermostats, which can help enhance the efficiency of your home’s furnace and/or air conditioner. Take a look at our thermostats or give us a call at 805-242-9638 for more information. How can I improve my energy costs? Your furnace and air conditioner can contribute significantly to your monthly energy expenses. However, these costs can be decreased with innovative and high efficiency products from Lennox®. Look for high SEER and AFUE ratings when you’re searching for a new air conditioner or furnace, respectively, as higher SEER and AFUE ratings mean higher efficiency products. If you’re not purchasing new heating and cooling equipment, consider factors such as: 1. Maintenance: Furnaces, air conditioners and other HVAC equipment work more efficiently when they are regularly maintained. 2. Zoning: When parts of your home are rarely used, you’re spending more money to heat or cool them to the same temperature as the rest of the house. A zoning system lets you section off different parts of your home and control the temperature by each area. 3. Programmable Thermostats: Programmable thermostats can help you lower your heating costs by 35 percent and your cooling costs by 25 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Why should I get a zoning system? A zoning system allows you to divide your home and heat or air condition each space differently. While these systems work well for buildings that have rooms that are rarely occupied, they can also be helpful in situations where you and your family can’t agree on the temperature in various areas of your house. There are a collection of additional benefits of zoning systems, including efficiency and comfort. Look through our selection of zoning systems or give Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning a ring to see how a zoning system could fit in your home.