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4 Signs of an HVAC System Infestation

4 Signs of an HVAC System Infestation

Rodents and small animals often look for warm places to nest, and the HVAC system in your Sarasota, Florida, home is the perfect cozy hideout. To find out if your home has attracted some unwelcome critters, here are some common signs of a pest infestation in your HVAC system.

Foul Odors

If you notice a pungent smell emanating from your air vents, it’s a sign that animal urine, rotting food, or dead carcasses are littered throughout the HVAC system. Decaying rodents have a distinctive smell — you’ll know when you smell it. Not only is a putrid smell unpleasant, but it’s also unhygienic. Bacteria from urine, feces, and rotting carcasses will circulate through the HVAC system and affect your home’s indoor air quality and your health.

Rodent Droppings

At the first sign of tiny black rodent droppings, take immediate action to contain the problem before a full-blown infestation occurs. Mice and rats can breed at an alarming rate. It’s always best to call a professional exterminator.

Scurrying Noises

There’s no sound more chilling in the dead of the night than the pitter patter of tiny feet as they scurry across the attic floor. You wonder if you’re dreaming or imagining it. So you listen again, almost ceasing breathing as you strain your ears. There it is again. Scurrying, squeaking, gnawing, and scratching are all conclusive evidence that you’ve got pests living in the attic.

Reduced HVAC Efficiency

Rodents are notorious chewers and can cause serious damage to HVAC ductwork and electrical wiring. When rodents move in, they will chew up all types of materials, including insulation and duct tape, to use to build nests. Insects, cockroaches, spiders, and wasps also gain entry to ductwork. Wasp nests and spider webs reduce air flow. If you notice your HVAC system’s performance has declined, inspect your ducts for signs of insects or rodents.

For help with an HVAC system infestation, contact Aqua Plumbing and Air at 941-306-3715. Once you’ve eliminated the pest problem, we recommend having the ductwork cleaned to thoroughly rid it of all harmful debris.

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4 Costly Thermostat Mistakes

4 Costly Thermostat Mistakes

One of the best money-saving upgrades you can make to your Sarasota, Florida, home is to install a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat helps reduce your HVAC system’s energy use, saving money. However, avoid making the following thermostat mistakes that will cost money rather than save money.

Setting the Wrong Temperature

The ideal HVAC temperature varies from home to home. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends a temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit during winter and 78 degrees during summer. Play around with the temperature setting until you find a comfortable temperature. Keep the indoor temperature as close to the outdoor temperature as you can, as this is the most energy-efficient way to run an HVAC system.

Adjusting the Temperature Frequently

While adjusting the temperature of your thermostat to a more energy-efficient temperature is advisable at night and when you’re not home, be careful not to change the temperature too often during the day to a wide variance between the outdoor and indoor temperatures. This could result in more frequent repairs to your HVAC system and shorten the unit’s lifespan.

Switching the HVAC Off When Leaving Home

If you live in a mild climate, it makes sense to switch the HVAC off when you are not home. However, in our area where temperatures are more extreme, it is best to leave it on but set back the temperature. This will keep your house from becoming too hot, which can result in dampness, humidity, or biological growth.

Using the Override Function Too Often

A programmable thermostat allows you to set different temperatures at different times of the day to save energy. If you want to temporarily adjust the temperature without changing the programmed setting, you can use the override function. However, don’t use the override function too often as you’ll lose the energy-saving advantage. Aim to keep the temperature unchanged for at least eight hours to enjoy the energy-saving benefits.

Using your thermostat correctly can improve your Sarasota home’s energy efficiency. To upgrade to a programmable thermostat, contact Aqua Plumbing & Air at 941-306-3715.

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Boost the IAQ In Your Home Office

Boost the IAQ In Your Home Office

Working from home has its benefits. However, being indoors all day and breathing stale or contaminated air circulated by the HVAC system can lead to fatigue, poor concentration, and illness. While there’s no avoiding running the air conditioner during the humid summer months in Sarasota, Florida, there are steps you can take to improve the air quality in your home.

Add Indoor Plants

Plants are a great way to clean the air in your home, and they look pretty, too. Houseplants reduce carbon monoxide and increase oxygen levels. Some of the best plants to combat indoor air pollution are bamboo palms, Boston ferns, peace lilies, and spider plants. Be careful not to over water plants as this can result in excess moisture building up in the room.

Install an Air Purifier

If you’re an allergy sufferer, you can install an air purifier to help remove allergens, pollutants, and toxins circulating in the air. The last thing you want is to feel ill when running your home-based business. Allergies and illness affect the quality of your work and reduce productivity. An air purifier will keep the environment healthy and help you breathe easier.

Ventilate Your Home

One of the easiest ways to boost indoor air quality is to simply open a window when the weather allows it. Letting fresh air flow through your office clears stagnant air and freshens up the room. To speed up ventilation, you can use ceiling fans or portable fans to help circulate air faster.

Reduce Moisture

The humid Florida climate can lead to excess moisture in homes, creating a perfect breeding ground for harmful biological growth that can exacerbate respiratory conditions like asthma. If your home suffers from too much moisture, consider buying a dehumidifier. Keeping humidity levels under control is crucial in maintaining good air quality.

If you’d like the air quality of your home assessed, call Aqua Plumbing & Air at 941-306-3715. We’ll be happy to evaluate your home and make recommendations on how to improve the air quality in your home.

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Should I Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat?

Should I Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat?

If you’re thinking of buying a smart thermostat, you may be wondering if it is worth the expense. Smart thermostats are a great investment that will reduce energy use and make your Sarasota, Florida, home more comfortable. Here are three reasons to consider upgrading to a smart thermostat.

Comfort and Convenience

One of the great things about living in this modern age is the technology it brings. Homes are becoming more automated and products like smart thermostats bring an extra level of comfort and convenience. With a traditional non-programmable thermostat, you have to adjust the temperature manually. With a programmable thermostat, you can preset the temperature and some smart thermostats even "learn" the habits and patterns of your home and adjust automatically.

Remote Operation

Smart thermostats are able to connect to Wi-Fi. This means you can operate it remotely and adjust the temperature from any location via your cellphone, provided you are connected to the internet. If you forget to turn the HVAC system off when you leave home, simply open the mobile app to turn it off or lower the temperature. Hop back on the app to switch it back on before you make your way home.

Saves Money

A major benefit of a smart thermostat is that it helps you save energy and lower your electric bill. Most people forget to adjust the thermostat as the weather shifts throughout the season. Many just "set it and forget it." With a smart thermostat, you can pre-program the temperature so that you don’t have to remember to adjust it. For example, in winter, you can pre-program the thermostat to automatically lower the temperature at night and increase it in the morning. In addition to saving energy, you’ll spend less on HVAC repairs and your furnace will last longer because it won’t be working as hard.

Smart thermostats are a worthwhile upgrade to make in your Sarasota home. They offer convenience and make your home more energy-efficient. If you’re interested in upgrading to a smart thermostat, contact Aqua Plumbing & Air on 941-306-3715 to inquire about our product range.

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4 Reasons to Schedule a Spring HVAC Tune-up

4 Reasons to Schedule a Spring HVAC Tune-up

Getting your Sarasota, Florida, home summer-ready means prepping your air conditioner and the best time to do this is during spring. Here’s why scheduling an HVAC tune-up in the springtime, before the hot weather strikes, is smart.

Prevents Untimely Breakdowns

Most people don’t give much thought to the air conditioner until it breaks down. HVAC breakdowns often happen at the most inconvenient times. There’s nothing worse than finding yourself without cool air on a hot and sticky summer day. Getting a tune-up done in spring can avoid untimely HVAC breakdowns and repairs.

Maximizes Efficiency

In the same way that being stuck without any cool air is unpleasant, suffering discomfort from a poorly functioning air conditioner is just as frustrating. Simple maintenance tasks like changing the air filter, having the ducts cleaned, or topping off refrigerant levels will keep your air conditioner running at an optimum level. Annual maintenance and seasonal tune-ups will keep your system efficient.

Preventative Maintenance Saves Money

Many homeowners balk at the idea of spending money on HVAC maintenance. They don’t see the point in spending money when nothing is broken. However, preventative maintenance can save you a lot of money in the long-term. Regular tune-ups can detect and fix small problems before they become a big expensive job. In addition, a well-functioning air conditioner is more energy-efficient and kinder to your electric bill.

Better Air Quality

During the winter months, your heat pump continues to accumulate dirt, dust, and debris. Rodents and pests may also have taken up residence in ductwork in their search for warmth during the cold weather. Various types of debris and contaminants can be released into the air when you switch the A/C back on. During a spring tune-up, your HVAC technician will clean out the system and keep your home healthy.

Schedule your spring HVAC tune-up if you want to stay happy and comfy when summer rolls around. At Aqua Plumbing & Air, we offer an affordable maintenance plan to keep your HVAC system running smoothly all year round. To sign up, contact us at 941-306-3715.

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3 Problems That Can Plague Your Commercial HVAC System

3 Problems That Can Plague Your Commercial HVAC System

You may not give much thought to the commercial HVAC system in your Bradenton, Florida, office, but it isn’t something you want to take for granted. Businesses of all types rely on their HVAC systems to keep their employees comfortable and healthy. Thermostat malfunctions, a lack of maintenance, and uneven air distribution are among some of the problems that can plague your office’s commercial HVAC system.

Thermostat Malfunctions

The thermostat regulates when and how your HVAC system delivers warm or cool air throughout your building. When this essential piece of equipment isn’t working properly, any malfunctions will also affect your HVAC system’s operations. A malfunctioning thermostat could trigger the system to skip operating cycles or run continuously, which can put a strain on the system’s parts.

Lack of Maintenance

Just as you need to schedule regular maintenance for your home HVAC system, you also need to plan for maintenance and servicing of your building’s commercial HVAC system. When you forego regular maintenance, your HVAC system becomes more susceptible to breakdowns and other problems. No one wants to subject a building’s occupants to sweltering heat or freezing work areas due to a malfunctioning HVAC system. Make regular HVAC system maintenance a priority.

Uneven Air Distribution

Why is your conference room so cold? Why does the reception desk area always feel so hot? Aging ductwork, improperly balanced dampers, and dirty air filters can all be linked to uneven air distribution throughout a building.

When conditioned warm or cool air is not distributed properly, you may find temperatures and humidity levels inconsistent in different areas of your building. This inconsistency is more than just a mere annoyance; it can translate to higher energy bills than necessary. If you’re experiencing this problem, your HVAC system may be malfunctioning or not sized properly to meet the air conditioning and heating demands of your building.

Let the commercial HVAC specialists of Aqua Plumbing & Air keep your office’s commercial HVAC system in peak operating condition. To schedule repairs or a system service visit, call us at 941-306-3715.

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