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  • The Benefits of a Rheem Plenum Adapter Accessory for Home Remodelers

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    When you are remodeling a home or office building, you need to make sure that the gas furnace is sufficient to guarantee a comfortable temperature throughout the newly remodeled space, no matter how cold the winter weather gets. However, things can get tricky if you realize that the size of the cased coil that is required to support the needs of the newly remodeled building is too large for the existing furnace. Read on to learn how a Rheem plenum adapter accessory can help you resolve this problem.

    Rheem Plenum Adapters: The Basics

    At the most basic level, a Rheem plenum adapter can make it possible for a nominal sized cased coil to be installed on the next-smallest size of gas furnace. More specifically, a plenum adapter can allow you to do the following:

    • Fit a 17.5-inch-wide coil 14-inch-wide furnace
    • Fit a 21-inch-wide coil with a 17.5-inch-wide furnace
    • Fit a 24.5-inch-wide coil with a 21-inch-wide furnace

    This might seem simple, but it can make a huge difference for home remodelers, in terms of both time and cost. By using a plenum adapter, you can avoid the hassle and expense of replacing an existing gas furnace that is not sufficient to meet the needs of the remodeled space. Rheem plenum adapters run about 76 dollars, which is nothing compared to the cost of a new furnace. Plus, the installation process for a plenum adapter is relatively simple -- just two steps for an upflow furnace and three steps for a downflow furnace.

    Fitting a Plenum Adapter to an Upflow or Downflow Application

    When you are buying plenum adapter for a gas furnace, you need to make sure that the accessory is designed for the type of furnace you are working with. An upflow system pushes air vertically out of the top of the furnace, usually from a basement. A downflow system pushes air from the bottom of the furnace, down into the vents, usually from an attic. There are slight differences in the designs of plenum adapter accessories for upflow and downflow applications, so you need to make sure you are getting the right one for your system.

     

    National Air Warehouse offers Rheem plenum adapter accessories for upflow and downflow systems. As a home remodeler, you can also find a wide variety of other high-quality products from Rheem, one of our featured brands. Contact us today to learn more about all of our products!

  • Choosing a Heat Strip Size That Can Keep Your Home Warm: The Factors to Consider

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    When you are buying a new furnace or air handler, you may be asked to choose a heat strip size. Depending on the product, heat strip sizes can range from 5 kW to as high as 20 kW. Ultimately, the choice you make can mean the difference between enjoying warm, cozy winter nights at home with your family and shivering through endless evenings of uncomfortable cold, wrapped in blankets and layered clothes.

    Of course, the size of your home is the most important factor, because it determines the volume of space that needs to be heated. However, there are several additional factors you need to consider when choosing the appropriate heat strip size for the furnace in your home. These factors can vary between homes, and they can make a big difference when it comes to making the appropriate decision for a heat strip size. Consider the following:

     

    • The climate in which you live. If your house is located in the Midwest or Northeast,where the temperature regularly drops below freezing in the winter, it is likely that you will need to choose a heat strip size that is larger than the size required for someone living in the Southeast in the same size house. Watching temperatures hit record lows this year, homeowners in the Midwest and Northeast don’t want to take the risk of choosing heat strips that are too small.
    • The insulation in the home. If your home is well-insulated, you may be able to get away with heat strips of a smaller size. However, if your house is poorly insulated, you may need to choose heat strips of a larger size, even if you live in a climate that is generally warm.
    • The size and location of the windows. Depending on size and location, windows can either increase or decrease the heat load of the home. Uninsulated windows can transfer cold air into the home, and if they are drafty, things can get even worse. At the same time, strategically positioned windows can also let in sunlight and decrease the heating needs of your house.

    When you choose heat strips that are above the standard size for your furnace or air handler, you typically have to pay a slightly higher price, but choosing the right size is typically well-worth it for homeowners. For instance, going from 5 kW heat strips to 10 kW heat strips for an upflow air handler can cost as little as 15 dollars -- typically representing an increase of only about 2 percent of the total cost. As a homeowner, it’s usually best to focus on the other relevant factors when choosing athe right heat strip size for your home.
    National Air Warehouse offers furnaces, air handlers, and a wide variety of other HVAC equipment. Contact us today for more information!

  • The Thermostatic Expansion Valve (TXV): Not Your Average Valve

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    As a result of more stringent energy efficiency regulations in recent years, thermostatic expansion valve (TXV) has become increasingly popular. Today, an indoor TXV is included with most gas furnaces and air conditioning systems on the market -- although it should be noted that these do typically have to be installed separately. If you have a system that did not come with a TXV, it is also possible to buy one separately and install it yourself. For other HVAC components, like air handlers, you may be asked to choose whether or not you want to add a TXV to your order.

    In order to decide whether a TXV makes sense for your system, it is important to know how they work. Read on for a basic overview of how a TXV functions in an HVAC system.

    What A TXV Does (and Does Not) Do

    The TXV makes it possible to precisely regulate the rate at which the liquid refrigerant is transferred into the evaporator in an HVAC system. By making it possible to control the flow of the refrigerant, a TXV offers two major benefits:

    • Improving the efficiency of the system
    • Preventing “floodback” -- that is, keeping excess liquid refrigerant from flowing back into the compressor after it has entered the evaporator

    There are a lot of misconceptions about what a TXV can do, so it is important for buyers to understand the limitations of this valve from the outset. The TXV only regulates the flow of the liquid refrigerant between the compressor and the evaporator. It does not have the capacity to control air temperature, humidity, suction pressure, or head pressure.

    The TXV works to regulate the flow of the liquid refrigerant by reacting to changes in two variables: the pressure in the evaporator, and the temperature of the refrigerant when it is being transferred out of the evaporator. The design of the mechanical design of the TXV makes it possible for the liquid refrigerant flow to be optimized based on the temperature and pressure conditions at any given moment.

    Weighing the Decision to Add a TXV

    Like so many features that boost the efficiency of an HVAC system, the TXV comes with an upfront cost. At the same time, a higher efficiency heating or cooling system will ultimately lower your energy bills and eventually pay itself off. And of course, it’s also better for the environment. You may also get a discount if you are adding a TXV to an order, rather than buying it on its own. You should keep these considerations in mind when deciding whether or not it makes sense to add a TXV to a new order or purchase one for an existing system.
    You can buy a standalone TXV from National Air Warehouse, or you can get a system where a TXV may be included. Contact us today to find out more about how our products can help meet your heating and cooling needs!

  • Fighting the Spread of the Flu: How a Germicidal Ultraviolet Air Treatment Kit Can Help

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    Flu season has arrived, and health officials around the United States are projecting that this year’s flu season will be worse than usual. According to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, there have been early outbreaks in several regions, which tends to be a bad sign for the country as a whole. The flu season in the Southern Hemisphere was also harsher than usual, which is another indicator of a severe flu season in North America.

    Even worse, health officials are reporting that the standard flu vaccine may not be effective against the dominant strain of flu (H3N2). This strain acquired a mutation that decreased the flu shot’s effectiveness in Australia to only 10 percent during the flu season in the Southern Hemisphere. Moreover, the H3N2 strain often makes people sicker than some of the other flu strains.

    In the face of concerns about the severity of this year’s flu season, it is important to do everything you can to protect the health of your family. Read on to learn more about how a UV Air Treatment Kit can help.

    How a Germicidal Ultraviolet Air Treatment Kit Works to Fight the Flu

    When viruses like the flu are exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light, it irreparably damages their DNA. This prevents the flu from being spread from one person to another, regardless of whether or not the flu can evade the vaccine. Thus, treating indoor air with a germicidal ultraviolet air treatment kit can destroy the viral particles that might otherwise make your family sick.

    Choosing an indoor air treatment kit as a strategy to fight the flu just makes sense. With the holidays in full swing and temperatures dropping below zero in many places around the country, your family is probably spending a lot more time inside your home. When people are in close quarters, it simply raises the odds that someone will bring in the flu, and soon, everyone will get sick.

    If you’re a business owner, a germicidal UV air treatment kit can also help your employees stay healthy during flu season. There is nothing more stressful than getting short-staffed by an office-wide flu outbreak, so an air treatment kit can be a great addition to your building during flu season.
    National Air Warehouse offers a 24-volt germicidal ultraviolet air treatment kit that can aid in the fight against many types of pathogens, including the flu virus. Contact us today to find out more about how this innovative technology can help keep your family and your employees healthy this flu season!

  • Considering a Ductless Heat Pump for Your Home

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    Last summer on the blog, we talked about the potential benefits of ductless air conditioners for home remodeling projects. Now that winter is here, it’s time to talk about ductless heat pumps. Ductless heat pumps, also known as ductless mini-complete systems, are very similar to ductless air conditioners, in that they serve as standalone climate-control systems that don’t use ducting. Thus, they are ideal for living spaces in your house where the other viable option would be baseboard heating. If you are considering a ductless heat pump for part of your home, read on to learn more about the energy-saving benefits of these systems and some of the cost considerations you should think about.

    The Energy-Saving Benefits of a Ductless Heat Pump

    The primary explanation for why many homeowners today are choosing ductless heat pumps over traditional baseboard heating is simple: the energy savings. From the start, ductless systems are more energy efficient than traditional heating systems because the mere existence of ductwork inevitably results in a loss of energy. According to one estimate, at least 25 percent of the energy generated by the HVAC system is lost to the ductwork in the average home.

    Another reason why ductless systems are more efficient is that they have inverter-driven compressors. Unlike traditional compressors in HVAC systems, which turn on and off in response to changes in the system’s needs, inverter-driven compressors simply slow down or speed up. Compressor start-up requires a lot more energy than compressor speed-up, so ductless heat pumps end up being a lot more efficient.

    It is important to note that the degree of energy efficiency varies between ductless heat pump systems. You can compare systems based on their SEER ratings. Ductless heat pumps with a 14 SEER rating have good efficiency, but there are also systems on the market today with SEER ratings as high 33.

    Cost Considerations for Consumers

    When it comes to deciding whether or not to choose a ductless heat pump for a living space in your home, cost can be a major factor. Many consumers initially shy away from ductless heat pumps because of the relatively high upfront costs, but the significant increase in energy efficiency can make up for your initial investment in the long-term.

    Moreover, in some states and localities, there are tax credits that can help offset the upfront cost of a ductless heat pump system. If you’re looking to take advantage of a tax credit, make sure to find out whether / which types of heat pumps qualify for a tax credit in your area when you are choosing a system.  

     

    National Air Warehouse offers a variety of ductless heat pump options. For more help deciding which one is right for your living space, contact us today!

  • Wi-Fi Thermostats Thermostats as Holiday Gifts

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    Now that Thanksgiving is over and the holiday season is officially in full swing, odds are good that you’re on the lookout for the perfect gift for that hard-to-shop-for friend or family member. One unique gift idea that you might want to consider this year is a wi-fi thermostat. Unlike traditional programmable and non-programmable thermostats, a wi-fi thermostat is connected to the internet, which means that you can access information about the climate in your home no matter where you are. Even more importantly, you can make changes to the current state of your heating and cooling systems so that the climate of your home will be exactly the way you want it when you get home. This innovative technology can be a great option for lots of people on your holiday shopping list.

    Who Needs a Wi-Fi Thermostat?

    The best kind of gift that you can get for a friend or family member is one that they will actually use and truly appreciate. Here are a few of the people on your holiday shopping list who might benefit from what a wi-fi thermostat has to offer:

     

    • The Mobile App Enthusiast. More and more Americans are looking to manage every aspect of their lives from a single screen. Because a wi-fi thermostat is always connected to the internet, it can always be accessed from a smart phone or tablet. If someone on your gift list is always on the hunt for the latest in mobile technology, a wi-fi thermostat is a great option.
    • The Tech Junkie. If someone on your holiday shopping list just loves the bells and whistles of the latest technology, a wi-fi thermostat won’t disappoint. Some of the latest products on the market offer high-tech benefits like self-programming features and touch screens.
    • The Busy Parent. Because a wi-fi thermostat can be accessed from anywhere, it can be a major stress reliever for busy parents. With a wi-fi thermostat, parents won’t have to remember to reset the thermostat when shuttling kids between school and soccer practice.
    • The Environmental Advocate. If someone on your holiday shopping list is always looking for new ways to combat climate change, wi-fi thermostats offer a variety of energy-saving benefits. For instance, many of the wi-fi thermostats on the market today are Energy Star certified, and some have an auto-away mode that saves energy when you aren’t home -- making it easier to reduce your carbon footprint without even thinking about it.

     

     

    National Air Warehouse offers multiple wi-fi thermostats that can meet the needs of anyone on your holiday shopping list. We also offer free home shipping anywhere in the United States, completely tax free (except Florida). Contact us today to learn more about our offerings!

  • The Importance of High Quality Copper Refrigerant Tubing Insulation

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    Last week on the blog, we talked about how helpful it can be to address issues with your air conditioning system in the fall, when issues are still on your mind after a long summer. When it comes to the functioning of your air conditioning system, the copper refrigerant lines that run between the condenser and the evaporator coil play an essential role. The larger of the two lines -- known as the suction line -- carries a cool gas, so it must be insulated with tubing. Read on to learn how the quality of this insulation can affect your HVAC system.

    Protecting Copper Refrigerant Lines with Insulation

    There are a few key problems that are associated with refrigerant line insulation, so it is essential to choose refrigerant tubing insulation that addresses these concerns. If you’re looking for tubing insulation for copper refrigerant lines, make sure it offers adequate protection against the following threats:

     

    • Condensation. Whether your copper lines are located indoors or outdoors, the copper line will likely be exposed to air that is warmer than the refrigerant that it carries. When warm air hits the cool copper line, it can lead to condensation. If your insulation does not provide an adequate barrier between the air and the copper line, it can create a moist, humid atmosphere within the insulation tube that is an excellent breeding ground for mold. Therefore, you should look for insulation with a closed-cell structure that prevents warm outside air from reaching the copper line.
    • Energy loss. Keeping the refrigerant in the suction line at a cool temperature is essential for maintaining the efficiency of the air conditioning system. The insulation basically acts like a thermos that keeps the refrigerant cool. If the refrigerant is exposed to warm outside air, more energy will be needed to keep it at the appropriate temperature. Again, choosing tubing insulation with a closed-cell structure can effectively guard against this problem and help keep your energy bills low.  
    • Ultraviolet radiation. If your copper line is located outdoors, it is essential to choose insulation that provides adequate protection against ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Even if the insulation is well-structured to prevent thermal energy losses and protect against condensation, long-term UV radiation can degrade the surface of the insulation and put your copper lines at risk. In order to avoid this hazard, you should look for tubing insulation that has been treated with a finish that is designed specifically to protect against surface degradation from UV exposure.

     

     

    If you’re looking for high-quality copper refrigerant tubing insulation, National Air Warehouse has what you need. We offer six-foot length tubing with both 7/8” and 3/4” inside diameters. Contact us today to learn more about our offerings!

  • Halloween Heating Tips for Homeowners

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    Happy Halloween! Today is the scariest day of the year, but with the cold months of winter on the horizon, you probably have something on your mind that’s even scarier than ghosts and ghouls: your winter energy bill. As a business owner, you need to keep the building warm in order to ensure the comfort of your customers and the productivity of your employees. As a homeowner, you want to keep your family cozy and warm during the long nights of winter. However, heating a home or business can be expensive, so you have to be strategic about the heating choices you make. Read on for some Halloween tips to help you keep your building warm this winter without dying of fright when you see your energy bill.

    Tip 1: It’s no treat to get tricked about AFUE.

    If you’re buying a new gas furnace for the winter, one of the things you have to consider is the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) of the system. This number is expressed as a percentage, and it is calculated by dividing the total heat output by the total energy consumed. When looking at these figures, it is important to understand what they might mean for your energy bill. In general, choosing a system with a higher AFUE can lower your energy bill. Medium-efficiency heating systems typically have AFUE ratings between 80% and 90%, while high-efficiency systems typically have ratings between 90% and 98.5%.

    However, it is important to note that AFUE ratings can only be directly compared if you are looking at systems that use the same fuel type. You can’t compare the AFUE of a natural gas furnace with the AFUE of an electric furnace if you are worried about your energy bill, because the costs of natural gas and electricity differ.

    Tip 2: Don’t count on the ghost in your attic to adjust your thermostat when it gets cold.

    In the winter, there’s nothing worse than coming home from a long day of work to a frigid house or arriving at your business in the morning and shivering through your 9 o’clock meeting. At the same time, you don’t want to waste energy heating your house all day when no one is home or your business all night when no one is working. To resolve this problem, you can install a programmable thermostat, which allows you to set a temperature schedule for your home or business so that it is warm when you want it to be without draining your budget by heating during the off-hours. Another option is a wi-fi thermostat, which enables you to adjust your thermostat remotely.

    Tip 3: Don’t be a ghoul and rule out a dual fuel packaged unit -- it might make sense for you!

    Dual fuel packaged units differ from traditional heat pumps in that they utilize a built-in gas furnace for supplemental heating rather than electric heat strips. Therefore, they are ideal for customers who live in places where the cost of heating with gas is lower than the cost of heating with electricity. Find out about the energy costs in your area before you rule out this option.
    Here at National Air Warehouse, we are committed to providing high quality HVAC equipment at affordable prices that even a ghost wouldn’t say boo about. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you heat your home this winter!

  • Start Capacitors vs Run Capacitors: What’s the Difference?

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    One of the most common reasons why an air conditioner stops working is a failed capacitor. In an air conditioning system, the capacitor is the energy storage device that holds the electrical charge needed to power the fan motor. Therefore, the failure of the capacitor means that your air conditioning system will stop blowing cold air, and a replacement is required.

    The Two Types of Capacitors

    There are two types of capacitors: run capacitors and start capacitors. Run capacitors are more common. They store the energy that is needed to keep the fan motor going so that the air conditioner continues to cool down your house. In contrast, the start capacitor specifically provides the energy needed to start up your air conditioner. As you might expect, it takes more torque to start the motor than to keep it running, so the capacitance -- that is, the energy storage capacity  -- of a start capacitor must be higher than that of a run capacitor. To understand why, think about the fan motor like a push-powered merry-go-round on a playground -- it can take considerable effort to get it started, but once it gets going, you don’t need to push as much to keep it running. Therefore, the capacitance rating for most run capacitors is between 5 and 80 Microfarads (MFD), while it typically ranges from 430 MFD to 516 MFD for start capacitors.

    Deciding What to Do When Your Capacitor Gives Out

    When the capacitor in your AC system gives out, you are faced with a decision: Should you replace the capacitor or replace the entire system? That may depend on whether the problem is with the start capacitor or the run capacitor. If the problem is with the run capacitor, replacing the capacitor often makes more sense. Depending on the MFD, the price of a run capacitor can range between less than 10 and 100 dollars, so it’s a safe investment. In most cases, replacing your run capacitor can get your system back up and running in no time!

    However, if the problem is with the start capacitor, you may want to consider replacing the system altogether. Start capacitors are larger and more expensive, and they are a lot harder to find, since most AC systems today do not have a separate start capacitor. If your system is getting old and its parts are giving out, it may be time to consider an upgrade.

     
    Whether you are looking for a replacement run capacitor, a new AC system, or any other HVAC equipment, National Air Warehouse can help you find what you need. Contact us today to learn more about all of our products!

  • Preparing for Power Outages: The Advantages of Central Gas Heating

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    Over the last few weeks, millions of Americans across the South have been left without power due to the damage from hurricanes and tropical storms. At the same time, in certain areas of the West, electrical power sources have been disrupted by wildfires. And as summer fades into fall and the weather gets colder, concerns about ongoing power outages are becoming more serious. Read on to learn more about the advantages of central gas heating for buildings in areas that are prone to power outages.

    The Growing Problem of Power Outages Around the County

    Large-scale natural disasters can cause power outages that leave homes and businesses out of power for weeks or even months on end, as power companies struggle to repair widespread damage and meet the needs of hundreds or even thousands of customers. This is a major inconvenience for homeowners and business owners -- especially if your building relies on electricity for heating. Your family may end up shivering through dinner, your employees will be less motivated to work in a frigid office environment, or your customers will want to spend as little time as possible in your chilly store.

    Losing heat due to a power outage can become an even more serious problem in the depths of winter, when things really start to get cold. Power lines may be damaged by an ice storm, or heavy snow could cause a tree to fall on a power line. When the weather is wet, windy, and cold, you could be waiting hours, days, or even weeks for the power to be restored.

    Central Gas Heating As a Solution to Problems from Power Outages

    One of the benefits of choosing central gas heating for your home or business is that the heat will stay on -- even when the electricity goes out. That way, everyone in the building will remain warm and comfortable as you wait for the lights to turn back on, no matter how long it takes.

    It is important to note that your furnace might not work perfectly during a power outage. Gas furnaces that rely on electric thermostats -- including Wi-Fi thermostats -- cannot send the signal to the furnace to provide heat when the power goes out. But the problem can be resolved relatively easily by installing a small electric generator to provide power to the thermostat in case of an emergency. That way, when the power goes out, the temperature of your building won’t be on your list of things to worry about.

     
    If you’re looking for a gas furnace for your home or business, National Air Warehouse offers a broad selection of options. Contact us today to learn more about our central gas heating solutions!

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