Category Archives: AC Maintenance & Repair

Correctly Charging AC Units

Many people may wonder why HVAC companies will not maintain or recharge your AC unit on a cold day. It is simply not an effective way to test freon levels.

Cold Temperature Charges

You can work on these units in the cold and some technicians use “insulated blankets” to wrap the outside condensing units with to create a head pressure rise. This simulates a hot day, they can then add or remove refrigerant based on that reading. The problem with this technique is the head pressure rise is more of an estimate. With this estimate of head pressure you are not getting an accurate reading therefore it would be easy to overcharge or undercharge the unit.

This results in you as the customer being inconvenienced by your unit still having issues and possibly having to pay for the same service to be done on a hot day. When charging your unit on a hot day you will get a accurate reading therefore resulting in a cheaper repair and peace of mind that your unit will be operating correctly. This is the preferred method to work on AC units because we know we are getting a correct reading and will not have to worry about an unhappy customer or wasted time. The correct temperature for recharges is 70-75° F.

 

R22 Refigerant Phase Out – Environmental Impact

What does the R-22 Refrigerant Phase out mean for your Hvac system?

The current phase of of R-22 Refrigerant in residential and commercial properties leaves home and business owners with unanswered questions. As R-22 is gradually phased out, alternative refrigerants are being introduced. One of these substitutes is R-410A, a blend of hydro-fluorocarbons (HFCs) that does not contribute to depletion of the ozone layer.

HCFC Phase out

Service to current HVAC systems

Production of new air conditioning units charged with R-22 ended in 2010, and by 2020, the servicing of R-22 based systems will rely solely on recycled or reclaimed refrigerants.

If your air conditioner was manufactured before 2010, it probably utilizes R-22. The good news is existing units using R-22 can continue to be serviced with R-22 as there is no EPA requirement for change or conversion of these units.

More than likely, your heating and cooling units will have sufficient R-22, unless a leak occurs. Since production is limited, costs to charge existing units leaking R-22 refrigerant have gone up and are expected to rise. We urge our customers to take the necessary steps to protect yourself from the rising cost of refrigerant. The best thing you can do properly maintain your unit to prevent leaks. You can do so by participating in routine tune-ups in the spring and fall. Remember, routine maintenance is far less expensive than emergency repairs.

Retrofits and Converting units

Retrofit units, converted R-22 units utilize a substitute refrigerant, are allowed if the alternative has been found acceptable for that type of use. Substitute refrigerant can work well in R-22 units with a few changes to system components. For example, simply replacing R-22 refrigerant with R-410A in a preexisting R-22 unit is not recommended due to its higher worker pressure. However, a certified professional can replace R-22 condensers with R-410A condensers, as long as the system coil is also updated. This provides consistency in the refrigerant  cycle, as one coil cannot be replaced without the other, and allows the retrofit to get you by for several more years.

The EPA wanrs of potential safety hazards related to the use of unapproved refrigerants in home air conditioning systems as they are not designed to handle flammable refrigerants.

Impact on the environment

Properly installed home comfort systems rarely develop major refrigerant leaks, and with proper servicing, a system using R-22, R-410A, or another refrigerant will reduce its impact on the environment. Remember to always select a reputable dealer to handle refrigerants.

Refrigerant R-22 is used in a number of refrigeration and air conditioning systems. R-22 is the halocarbon compound named monochlorodifluoromethane with chemical formula CHCIF2 and it is the hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC). R-22 is one of the most popular refrigerant used in cooling system, but unfortunately, the halocarbons (chlorine and fluorine) present in these compounds have the potential to cause depletion of the ozone layer in the atmosphere leading to greenhouse effect. The ozone layer destroying potential of R-22, which is HCFC is much lesser than the other chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), still in the long-term they do have detrimental effects on the atmosphere.

The depletion of ozone layer from the upper layers of atmosphere results in ultraviolet rays of the sun to reach the surface of the earth. This leads to high temperature on the earth and the ultraviolet ray themselves are very harmful to the skin of humans. To avoid the long-term dangers of the R-22 and other CFCs, it has been decided to phase out the use and production of R-22 completely along with other CFC refrigerants.

ozone depletion

New units

A important thing a homeowner can do for the environment is to purchase a highly energy efficient system. Today’s air conditioners use much less energy, provide cost savings in maintenance an electric costs, and offer a green alternative to R-22 units. Rebates and tax credits also help to offset the cost of new systems.

The best time to switch is before your hit by the high costs of repairing a refrigerant system. Take into account the age of your current unit (as a general rule, systems should be older than 10 years) look for the energy star label to save up to 40 percent on utility bills and consider the minimum seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) specification.

montreal protocol imagechlorine vs oxygen

RGF Reme Guardian Air Purification System Photohydroionization (PHI)

The Guardian Air by RGF uses Photohydroionizationin (PHI) in conjunction with enhanced UV light and is designed to eliminate sick building syndrome risks by reducing odors, air pollutant, VOCS (chemical odors), smoke, mold bacteria and viruses. The HVAC-PHI Cells are easily mounted into your heating and air conditioning systems air ducts where most sick building problems start. When the HVAC system is in operation the HVAC-PHI Cell creates an Advanced Oxidation Process consisting of, Hydro-Peroxides, super oxide ions and hydroxide ions. All are friendly oxidizers. By friendly oxidizers we mean the oxidizers revert back to oxygen and hydrogen after the oxidation of the pollutant.

The Guardian Air unit size, is scaled to accommodate the various air flow rates of different HVAC systems. Locate the air blower size in cubic feet per minute (CFM) of the HVAC system you are intending to install the system in, then pick the model number that corresponds to that flow rate. Therefore, there is a unit available to install in almost any HVAC application.

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 Germicidal UV Light vs Photohydroionization

Germicidal UV light rays have been used for decades by the medical industry as a method for destroying micro-organisms (germs, viruses, bacteria). UV light is dependable and can be easily installed in HVAC ducts or a plenums. Germicidal UV light is effective in reducing only the airborne micro-organisms that pass directly through the light rays. However, germicidal UV light has little to no effect on gases, vapors or odors.

Photohydroionization Advanced Oxidation, on the other hand, is very effective on gases, vapors, VOCS and odors. UV light enhanced by a hydrated quad-metallic compound target develops an advanced oxidation reaction that creates an Advance Oxidation Process (AOP). This process also produces hydro-peroxides, super oxide ions and hydroxides. By engineering the proper UV light wavelength, in combination with a triple function, no maintenance unit. The PHI Cell provides safe AOP to purify the air. With the RGF HVAC-PHI Cell Advanced Oxidation System, micro organisms can be reduced by over 95%. Gases, VOCs and odors can also be reduced significantly, and the room will have hydro peroxides, super oxide ion and hydroxides which will help give your room fresh, clean and odor free air.

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Hydro-peroxides Breakdown

The breakthrough in the RGF advanced oxidation technologies is a group of oxidants known as hydro-peroxides. Hydro-peroxides have been a common part of our environment for over 3.5 billion years. Hydro-peroxides are created in our atmosphere when ever three components are present: oxygen molecules, water vapor and energy (electro magnetic). REME also has the ability to super charge these hydro-peroxides or ionize them into Ionoized-Hydro-Peroxides.

Ionized-Hydro-Peroxides are very effective at destroying harmful microbial’s in the air and on surfaces. As oxidants, they do this by either destroying the microbe through a process known as cell lysing or by changing the molecular structure and rendering it harmless (which is the case in VOC’s and odors). The amount of hydro-peroxides required to accomplish this task in a conditioned space is well below the level that is constantly in our outside air. The Advanced Oxidation Technology found in RGF’s Guardian Air product family has brought the oxidants found in the outside air into the conditioned space of your home.

There is no known case of hydro-peroxides ever creating a health risk. Over the past 20 plus years RGF has more then 1 million Advanced Oxidation products successfully used worldwide without a safety problem.

hydroperoxide

Test Results

  • Tested on H1N1 Swine Flu with 99+% Kill on surfaces
  • ISO-Level 3 particulate reduction in a bio-chamber (better than HEPA Filtration)
  • 4-log reduction (99.9%) surface bacteria/virus reduction
  • Over 90% VOC reduction
  • 88% of microbes in human sneeze killed at 3 feet
  • 97% airborne bacterial reduction
  • 99% reductions of Ecoli, Listeria, Strep and Bird Flu
  • 85% odor reduction
  • 97% airborne mold reduction
  • US Military approved for mold protection in field hospitals
  • Hospital approvals Infectious Diseases – U.S. and International 99% reduction of STAPH (MRSA)
  • Major US city school reports 20% reduction in absenteeism
  • Tested and approved by the Chinese Government for protection against SARS virus
  • Approved by the USDA, FSIS and FDA for use in food processing plants
  • Fox News three-part indoor air series featured RGF and concluded substantial mold and bacteria reductions.
  • RGF’s technology has been featured on Fox, ABC, CBS, and in Popular Science Magazine.

We have installed many of these with great reviews from every customer! We are proud to be installing RGF REME products in Northern Colorado. If you would like to improve the air quality in your home today! Call Ace Hi Plumbing, Heating and Air for any of your plumbing or heating concerns!

R22 FREON

If your air conditioning was installed before  2010 you probably have a refrigerant called R22.  This refrigerant was instituted in the 1950s and became the refrigerant used in the HVAC industry.  By 1980 the world started to understand that they were contributing to the depletion of the ozone from the R22 refrigerant.  In the beginning of 2010 manufacturing and import of R22 would be prohibited.  Current equipment would be considered case by case.  R22 was still available for sale until 2015.  By 2020 R22 will no longer be available for sale,at least in the us.  There are options available for R22.  There is recycled R22 .

Prices for R22 freon will start rising the closer we get to 2020.  The “virgin” R22 will become very valuable and prices to repair these older units will cost almost as much as replacement.

The main concern for HVAC companies is the parts availability for repairing the old freon systems and the freon leaking into the ozone.   If you replace your condenser with another R22 condenser there is always a concern about the air conditioning coil leaking (inside furnace ).  Concerns about internal leaks in this coil.  No parts available for repair.  So now you are out the money for the condenser because you will need to upgrade the condenser and the coil to convert to the new refrigerant 410A.

The simplest option is to upgrade to  a new air conditioning system especially if the system is over 10 years old.  Upgrade to the new 410A freon system and you will have peace of mind knowing you did the right thing.

Do your due diligence and research products and companies before you buy.  Ace Hi Plumbing,Heating and Air has been here since 1996.  We offer fair pricing and top quality service.

 

Fort Collins Air Conditioning

People think Colorado is only snow covered mountain tops and harsh cold weather with floods.  It does get hot here in Colorado and making sure you have the right air conditioning system for your home or business is important as your heating system.  As Xcel Energy says, “a good contractor will do a load calculation before installing a new system.”  This sizing of the system is important for air flow and making your house comfortable throughout the summer.  Ace Hi Plumbing,Heating and Air is here to help with questions about heating and air conditioning. We service Fort Collins and the surrounding areas of Northern Colorado .

Air Conditioning Service – Northern Colorado!

The heat is on! Time to service the air conditioner in your home. Look to us to help you find the right system that works for you. Get maximum performance from the system you have or invest in new technology.

Call Ace Hi Plumbing, Heating & Air Today!!

970-667-0300