When to replace vs. when to repair?
Replacing your equipment can seem like a big decision. Some may decide to change the equipment when the repairs become too frequent and costly. Others may only replace the equipment when it completely fails. At QHC, we believe there are four factors to consider when deciding whether or not to purchase a new piece of equipment:
Savings – Will you save money with the new equipment? When rebates, energy savings, and repair costs are all considered, will you make your money back in the next 2-5 years?
Safety – Does your current equipment run the risk of a carbon monoxide leak, gas leak, or is there so much rust that it is contaminating your home?
Comfort – Do you have cold spots in the house? Are you feeling dry and dehydrated in the mornings? Is the equipment loud and bothersome? Do you feel comfortable with the air and water in your home? Do you have enough hot water?
Peace of Mind – Is the equipment still under warranty? Are you worried about unexpected repairs?
When we consider these four factors, it will be much easier to decide on whether or not replacing the equipment is for you.
If you call us for service on your equipment and decide that you instead want to replace it with us, we won’t charge you for the service call!
Which filter do I buy and how often do I need to change it?
This is a topic that is often brought up with us. Replaceable filters vary in price and many of them claim to be of the most superior quality and can be very expensive. Don’t be fooled! Buy the cheapest filters and buy them in bulk. Change your filter every month of the year, even in the summer. Save your money!
What is the best brand of furnace or air conditioner?
We would love to tell you that a certain brand is best but we cannot do that. A furnace has a handful of important components that are encased inside a cabinet. Nearly all manufacturers can do this without a problem. Some have cabinets made of a stronger material and claim that it will protect the furnace from damage – what damage are you planning on doing to a furnace inside a tiny room? Honestly, all furnaces are good but that doesn’t mean they are all the same! What you, as a consumer, should be concerned with is the warranty and the features of the furnace. The stronger the warranty, the better and longer you are protected should anything go wrong. Also, remember that manufacturers are not out there to lose money! So if Goodman offers a LIFETIME heat exchanger warranty that must mean they don’t plan on it to ever fail! The features are the second thing you should consider. Features include the gas valve, the fan and inducing motors, intelligent technology, etc. Once you decide on these two factors it will be much easier to find the right furnace or air conditioner for you. Call us today and we will be more than happy to walk you through the different types of equipment that are right for you. Free consultation!
What is the difference between HVAC contractors? Shouldn’t I just go with the cheapest one?
Now that you have found the equipment you want, you have to find someone to install it for you. Installation is what accounts for the majority of the equipment’s performance! Even the best furnace in the world won’t operate properly if it is installed incorrectly. At QHC, we do a series of tests and measurements as part of our pre and post-installation diagnostics that ensure your furnace will be operating at its peak performance. Gas pressure, air flow and leakage, delay timers, and even electrical wiring are factors that most technicians neglect to consider.
Also, consider the reliability of the contractor you hire. You don’t want to hire someone who can’t be reached in a year when you need to redeem your warranty for a repair. Find a contractor that will be there for you for emergency service within a few hours on the coldest day of winter and hottest day of summer.
Why should I care about air quality?
Air quality has recently become a great concern for many homeowners. If you have children in the house, it is crucial to at the very least be informed on the quality of the air inside your home. Since children have weaker immune systems, they are more susceptible to being affected by pollutants and bacteria. The technology available today is truly amazing and everyone should be informed about it. Call us today and we will provide you with a free air quality consultation. We will give you an assessment of the air in your home and provide you with possible solutions.
How much money can I save with new heating and cooling equipment?
Check out our savings calculators here to see your potential savings!
If your furnace is vented through the chimney, then you can receive $1600 from Enbridge and $250 from OPA for just replacing the furnace. The Enbridge rebate is given to you because you will save a minimum of 15% on total home gas consumption just by changing your furnace. The OPA rebate is given to you because the new ECM motor consumes 70% less electricity which can mean savings of up to 25% on total home electricity use. So we are not the ones telling you how much money you can save, the government is!
If your furnace is already high efficiency, you can still get the OPA rebate. To receive the $1600 Enbridge rebate, you may need to take one additional measure to guarantee that your home’s gas consumption will be reduced by 15%.
Call us today for a free consultation and we will show you how to qualify for these rebates and demonstrate how you can save money with new HVAC equipment.
Do I qualify for any rebates?
Almost everyone qualifies for cash rebates from Enbridge and OPA. The rebates range from $250 to $2750. The older your equipment and the more improvements you make, the more money you receive. The rebates are given as an incentive for decreasing gas and electricity usage.
If you install a new air conditioner rated 16 SEERS or greater, you will receive $400 from OPA. Install a furnace with an ECM motor and receive $250. Achieve 15% or greater gas savings per year and receive $1600 to $2100 from Enbridge. There are also manufacturers rebates and more government incentives associated with insulation that we can help you receive. Call us for a free consultation and we will be more than happy to show you how to get these rebates and save money!
How do rentals and financing work?
Rental programs are a great option for many of our clients. Basically, we install the equipment in your home free of charge with no money down and you pay to protect and service the equipment for a low monthly charge. All repairs and maintenance are totally covered by the monthly subscription and you can buy out of the plan at any time.
Our financing programs are low interest and open loans. You can put no money down and delay payment up to 18 months without any interest. Just give us a call and we can show you how they work in more detail! You can install a new furnace, tankless, and air conditioner in your home today, not pay for 18 months, and receive over $2000 in cash rebates immediately.
Should I cover my air conditioner in the winter?
Don’t waste your money! Air conditioners were designed for the outdoors. Covering your unit will actually increase rust and potentially damage it.
What does the warranty really cover?
This is an important question to ask before deciding on the equipment you want to purchase. In most cases, equipment will come with a labor warranty and a parts warranty. A labor warranty will cover any work a contractor needs to perform to repair your equipment so that you don’t have to pay. However, this will not cover a service call fee the contractor may charge you to come to your home. A parts warranty will cover and failed parts for the term of the coverage. All of these warranties will only cover problems that occur because of manufacturer defects. If your house should have a plumbing leak that drips water onto the furnace and blows it, or if you have a power surge and blow the circuit board, the manufacturer’s warranty will not cover the repairs. Take a look at our protection plans to receive total peace of mind coverage on your biggest investment!
Do I really need to maintain my equipment?
Absolutely! However, not all “maintenance” is the same. Some contractors will charge you $150 just to vacuum your furnace and change the filter then tell you they did a 50 point inspection. At QHC, furnace maintenance actually goes beyond a simple vacuuming. We will inspect your entire HVAC system as it relates to the furnace or air conditioner in order to know exactly what is going on in the home. This includes air flow measurement in the ducts, gas pressure analysis in the furnace, resetting timers as needed, etc. Preventative maintenance will guarantee that your furnace and air conditioner operate at their peak levels throughout the year. You will save the money you spend on a maintenance check with energy savings and avoided repairs.
Why do my kids get nose bleeds in the winter?
Toronto has extremely cold winters so we run our furnace constantly. Unfortunately, furnaces circulate the air in your home and make it quite dry. The cilia inside the nose become dry and damaged when exposed to dry air. When this occurs, we become exposed to bacteria and pollutants making us vulnerable. One side effect is nosebleeds. A simple solution is to install a central humidifier inside the home, keeping you and your family safe and feeling perfect.
Why do I feel so dry in the morning?
If you feel dry it can be because of many reasons. It could be that your ducts need to be cleaned as they are filled with dust, hair, and sometimes even dead rodents! It may be due to the poor air quality in your home, especially if you smoke in the house, have pets, or if you live in a heavily populated or industrial area. Another possibility is that your furnace has not been maintained properly and you need to change the filter and perform a furnace cleaning. Finally, it could simply be that you need to install a central humidifier to add moisture to the air. Call us for a free consultation and we will be more than happy to assess the air quality in your home and provide you with some solutions!
Why do I have cold spots in my house?
Cold spots can be the result of a few reasons. If the cold spots are in rooms with windows or doors, it could be that you have air leaking to the outside, allowing heat to escape. Another possibility is that the ductwork in your home doesn’t allow the heat to flow evenly through your home, meaning that the design is flawed or that there could be something blocking airflow inside the ducts (e.g. dust and hair). Also, your furnace may be old and have lost power to push the air through all the ducts evenly. If you hear your furnace constantly turning on and off, that means it’s not providing a consistent flow of heat which may stop all the rooms from receiving warmth.
Most of these issues can be solved without redoing ductwork or making drastic changes IF and ONLY IF a proper assessment and diagnosis are conducted in the home. These are things that are covered with the installation of a new furnace. We are able to compensate for things like leaks, poor insulation, cold spots, and improper ductwork by choosing the correctly sized furnace, tuned to your home’s requirements, and making sure it has all the capabilities your home requires. For example, a furnace with a two-stage gas valve will run most often on a low power stage, providing constant heat in your home and allowing all the rooms to circulate air through the furnace. If you have the home’s original furnace, then you likely hear it go on and off constantly, meaning it is a single stage furnace. A single stage furnace will run at its full power until the thermostat is satisfied then shut off, turning on only once the temperature drops. This results in some rooms not having an opportunity to circulate air through the furnace. If the room where the thermostat is the only room that feels comfortable, then this is likely the case.
These are all things that are covered by our free consultations. Call us here at QHC today and remember that we are always here for you.