Posted by & filed under Air Conditioning Service .

Routine tune-ups can lengthen the life of your air conditioning unit and protect any warranties or guarantees that are in effect. This regularly scheduled care not only keeps your home or office comfortable during the warmest seasons, it allows you to budget for many of the repairs or upgrades necessary in the future. Here are three ways that a regularly scheduled air conditioning tune-up saves time and money:

  1. Yearly visual inspections by a knowledgeable HVAC professional allow you to keep your warranties, guarantees, and service commitments intact. Many companies require certified specialists handle the regular care and maintenance in order to meet their requirements. Whether they cover parts and labor, or just parts, these contracts offer benefits that can help save money on the future care of your unit.
  2. Coils and fins gather dust, dirt, and debris over the year. This accumulation of grime decreases efficiency. HVAC specialists have the right tools and equipment necessary to clean up your AC in less time. They can also identify damaged or missing components that may prevent optimal performance. This saves money on future repairs and keeps your energy costs within your expectations.
  3. Central air conditioning systems require flushing and cleaning leaving behind contaminants that require specialized care and disposal. Licensed HVAC teams have a system in place that meets local and state safety standards. This is faster, cheaper, easier, and safer than trying to tackle the work yourself and then taking it to a local landfill or processing facility for disposal.

Keep your air conditioning units running with regularly scheduled care by a professional HVAC technician; they have access to up-to-date technologies and information that improves the efficiency of your unit while meeting your budget requirements. This saves you the hassle of adding another chore to your list and keeps you informed about future repairs so that you can plan ahead.

Contact us at M&M Mechanical, Inc. today!

Posted by & filed under Air Conditioning, Seasonal Tips .

Spring is in full bloom, and with it comes the tradition of deep cleaning your home. Most spring cleaning to-do-lists lack one extremely important task, and that is prepping your air conditioner for the cooling season. If you don’t know how or where to start, don’t worry, we’re here to help. The list provided below will guide you through the process of readying your air conditioner for the summer.

The Air Filter
The filter in your air conditioner stops airborne particles and allergens from polluting your home. If you don’t change the filter on a regular basis, your home’s air quality will suffer. While poor air quality is reason enough to change your air conditioner’s filter, an overworked unit is another important factor. When the air filter is left dirty, your unit will struggle to cool your home, meaning the system will end-up running for longer periods of time. Not only does this affect its efficiency and your energy bill, but it also shortens the life of your air conditioner. Changing the filter once a month will ensure your air is clean and your unit is running efficiently.

Check the Outside Condenser Unit
During the off-season, branches, leaves and dirt can land on and around your outdoor condenser unit. This can lead to an air flow obstruction. Simply clear the area of all debris before turning your air conditioner on for the summer.

Schedule a Tune-Up
Hiring a HVAC professional to tune-up your air conditioner in the spring before the cooling season starts is always recommended. Your system works hard during the summer and without proper maintenance it can unexpectedly breakdown. A HVAC technician will clean and inspect your unit. If they find any worn-out parts, or possible malfunctions they will alert you to the problem and suggest the appropriate solution. Yearly tune-ups ensure your system is running efficiently and prolongs the life expectancy of your unit.

A properly maintained air conditioner is key to staying cool this summer. If you would like to schedule an A/C tune-up this spring, please contact us today and we’ll be happy to help you.

Posted by & filed under Equipment Tips, General Tips, preventative maintenance .

Today’s central heating and air conditioning systems are often equipped with sophisticated, digital thermostats. These devices do much more than analog, dial-type thermostats or those that depend on mercury for operation.

However, the one drawback to digital thermostats is that they often use batteries to function. Without internal batteries, digital thermostats won’t work and could leave you without heat or cool air. Fortunately, battery replacement is usually a simple and fast process, and homeowners can perform it without fear once they know how to safely handle the replacement.

How to Replace Batteries

Battery replacement should be performed as needed, but you should also replace them on an annual basis, at the very least. That will prevent any unexpected thermostat failures, especially during the coldest or hottest times of the year.

If you have your thermostat’s instructions handy, then you should review them prior to attempting a battery change. If not, you may be able to locate an electronic copy online at the manufacturer’s website for download and viewing.

Begin by shutting down the power to the thermostat and central heating and air conditioning system. The voltage levels inside the thermostat are fairly low and incapable of shocking you; however, you should always flip off the appropriate circuit breaker switch at the panel to prevent accidental surges which could damage the system.

Next, consult the thermostat instructions to determine how to access the battery compartment. Many times, the compartment can be accessed by simply pulling the front panel away from the base, or you may have to lift-and-slide the panel to remove it. There may also be occasions when screws need to be removed to permit access.

After the panel has been removed, take out the old batteries and replace them with fresh, alkaline batteries. Be sure the batteries are properly aligned for polarity, with the positive and negative terminals facing the correct directions.

Replace the panel as instructed and then restore power to the thermostat at the circuit breaker panel. You may need to reprogram the thermostat to recover previous settings.

Please contact us with any questions or service needs that you may have.

Posted by & filed under Air Conditioning, M&M Mechanical .

As warmer weather arrives, many homeowners start to think about spring cleaning. One important part of spring cleaning that is often overlooked is your HVAC system. A properly-functioning air conditioner is a critical part of keeping your home comfortable and should therefore be part of your spring cleaning schedule. The following maintenance tasks will help your air conditioner to keep your home cool throughout the spring and summer.

Replace your air filters. Replacing the air filters on a regular basis is one of the most important HVAC maintenance tasks. Dirty air filters increase energy costs and lead to poor indoor air quality in your home, which can become a health hazard. You should replace your air filters once a month.

Clean the unit’s condenser coils and evaporator coils. Dirty coils will lower the system’s ability to keep your home cool. This will cause your unit to run longer and lead to higher cooling costs.  Therefore, it is important to clean your coils to keep your unit performing its best.

Check your air conditioner’s refrigerant level. If you don’t have the correct amount of refrigerant, your system will run less efficiently. This will increase your energy costs and shorten the life of your unit.

Clean the ductwork. Your ductwork should be cleaned and tested for leaks. Leaks in your ductwork reduce the efficiency of your HVAC unit. If you do not keep up with this task, your air conditioner will run longer in order to keep up with the air that has leaked out out.

Schedule an air conditioning tune-up. A preventive check now can save you a lot of trouble down the road. Don’t wait until the heat of summer to find out that your air conditioner isn’t working properly. Make an appointment for an HVAC inspection. Your technician will check your HVAC system and ensure that it’s running at optimal levels.

Do you have any questions? We would love to help you out and therefore encourage you to contact us at M&M Mechanical, Inc.

Posted by & filed under Heating .

Cold winter weather is a part of life in Virginia. Unfortunately, temperatures forecast to be cold enough to warrant firing up the furnace are an opportunity for scammers to go door-to-door in search of a quick and easy payday. Anyone who has lived through a Virginia winter knows exactly what we’re talking about.

Heating contractor scams are pretty common in cold weather states. We strongly dislike them for a couple of reasons. First, scammers harm our customers by taking their money without providing the promised repairs. Second, those same scammers give a black eye to an entire industry that otherwise looks out for people.

In order to help you prepare yourself for the next round of cold weather, we have put together a list of five signs that suggest you might be the victim of a heating repair scam. If you recognize any of them during your negotiations with a heating contractor, don’t proceed any further. Stop and report the scammer to the authorities.

1. A Lack of Documentation

You can never go wrong by asking a contractor to show proof of licensing and insurance. Licensing is one way to weed out bad actors, and scammers that typically don’t spend money on insurance policies. Any contractor who refuses to show you proper documentation is one you should stay away from.

2. Lowball Estimates

It is common to see some variation in price when you ask for estimates from several contractors. Remember this: there is a general industry price range for typical heating work. If a contractor offers you an extremely low estimate that seems too good to be true, it very well might be. Remain cautious.

Lowball estimates could mean one of two things. First, you might be dealing with a scammer looking only to put some quick cash in his pocket. Second, you might be dealing with a legitimate contractor who, despite not looking to scam you, may still do very shoddy work.

3. Requests for Cash Deposits

One of the biggest red flags signifying a scam is a request for a significant cash deposit. The scammer may claim to need the money to secure the materials necessary to do the work. Don’t fall for it. Reputable contractors work out their own credit plans with suppliers in order to secure what they need for each job.

4. Unwillingness to Provide References

Trustworthy contractors are not afraid to provide references. The scammer won’t offer references for obvious reasons. Always ask for them, and then be sure to follow up on the names and phone numbers you’re given. References can tell you a lot about the quality of work your contractor will provide. In the event that those references are fake then you will know soon enough.

5. Unwillingness to Provide a Contract

Finally, scammers looking to take advantage of unsuspecting homeowners are relatively light on the details they are willing to divulge. Ask for a written contract and they are likely to hem and haw. No scammer wants to leave a paper trail behind. If you ask for a contract and then sense unwillingness to provide one, walk away from the deal.

It is unfortunate that cold weather has to bring out scammers more than willing to prey on people who need help. We are proud to say that you don’t have to worry about being scammed when you contact us. M&M Mechanical is a reputable heating and air conditioning company approved as an Angie’s List provider and A+ rated by the BBB.