Change Your Air Conditioning Filters for Optimal HVAC Performance

Change Your Air Conditioning Filters for Optimal HVAC Performance

Did you know that changing out your air filter in your air conditioning unit could not only improve air quality indoors, but also reduce the chances of air conditioner failures? The U.S. Department of Energy shared that inadequate maintenance, including dirty filters and air coil, can reduce the ability of your air conditioning system to work properly and even cause compressors or fans to fail prematurely. To prolong the life of your HVAC unit, Georgia residents are advised to regularly change their air conditioning filters. This is a simple procedure that most homeowners can do with just a few instructions.

How to Change Your Air Conditioning Filter:

Step 1: Find the air conditioner filter. It may be located along the ductwork, in the furnace, floor, or ceiling. It is often covered with some form of slotted metal door.

Step 2: Examine the filter and look along the top and sides to find a notation for size such as 12x14x1.

Step 3: You are ready to purchase a filter but there are likely to have many types of filters from which to choose. There can be significant price variation and filter may work differently and be good for a single month or last over several months. Consider your budget and needs when making your selection.

Step 4: Write the date on your air filter. Usually, you will find a designated place for homeowners to label the air filter with the date of the new installation. It is useful to note the replacement date, whether in a month or in a few months, depending on purchase, on a calendar or on a smartphone as a reminder.

Step 5: Remove the old filter. Open the metal covering. Loosen any screws or holding device. Take out your old air conditioning filter.

Step 6: Install the new filter. Check for the side showing correct airflow direction by finding the arrow. Often there is a date on the filter side that faces out of the covering.

Step 7: Secure any holding device and metal door and put it back together.

How Often Should I Change my AC Filter?

During the cooling season, homeowners are recommended to install a new filter every month, depending on the type of filter purchased, for both central systems and window units or clean the washable types of AC filters.
Changing out the air conditioning filter can improve efficiency of the system while reducing energy costs that often rise during the summer. Not every maintenance task is easy to perform. Hammond Services, providing HVAC, plumbing and electrical services to residents in Griffin, Newnan, Clayton, Coweta, Henry, Lamar, Meriwether, Pike, Spalding, Upson, McDonough, Peachtree City and Fayetteville, can expertly address Georgia homeowners needs.

Contact a Hammond Services technician to schedule an appointment for HVAC maintenance or repair today.

How to Fix a Toilet That’s Always Running

How to Fix a Toilet That’s Always Running

Before you can fix the toilet, you must first figure out why it is always running. Therefore, the first step is to remove the lid and inspect the parts inside (I know it may seem gross to have to stick your hands in the water, but I assure you the water in the tank is clean.)

5 Parts of the Toilet

  • The flush lever
  • The rubber flapper that is attached to the flush lever that blocks the water from descending into the toilet bowl.
  • The pump that refills the tank with water after you flush it and it empties.
  • The float that raises and lowers as the water level goes up and down; it lets the pump know when to go and when to stop.
  • The overflow tube, which sets the water level in the tank.Before you begin to inspect the five parts of your toilet found under the lid, you should turn off the water that is connected to the toilet. There should be a silver colored valve or knob behind the toilet; turn it all the way to the right until it stops.

2 Most Common Causes of a Running Toilet

If the cause of your running toilet is one of the following two you may be able to repair it yourself. If you need help or find that one of these common problems is not the issue, we recommend you enlist the services of Hammond Services

  • Chain Problems – If the link between the toilet flush lever and rubber flapper that it is attached to is unconnected, simply reconnect. If the chain is too short it will constantly pull on the rubber flapper even if the lever is not moving (flushing). If that is the case, you can replace the chain with a new one that has a longer length or an aluminum ball. If the chain is too long, then shorten the chain by moving the clip down a few links.
  • Bad Rubber Flapper – The rubber flapper can break, leak or warp. To check and see if the flapper is working properly, flush the toilet and allow all the water to drain from the tank. Gently unhook the rubber flapper to get a better look. If the flapper is dirty, try cleaning it first and once the buildup is gone that may solve your problem. If you find that it is broken (chipped plastic or warping) replace the rubber flapper.

If you’re still having problems with your toilet running contact Hammond Services. We are more than happy to provide you with information, answer your questions and set up an appointment to come out and repair your toilet.

Troubleshooting Common HVAC System Problems

Troubleshooting Common HVAC System Problems

When your air conditioning or furnace isn’t functioning correctly, it can be frustrating and worrisome. However, you do not necessarily need to bring in a professional right away. There are some things you can check on your own before calling the experts at Hammond Services:

  1. Does the furnace or air conditioner unit have power? Check to see if a circuit breaker was tripped or if fuses are broken or blown. Turn it off and back on again.
  2. Does the thermostat have power? If it’s battery-operated, try replacing the batteries. If it’s tied to the electrical system, check to see if the breaker for the thermostat needs to be re-set.
  3. Are the registers open and is the fan “on”? As basic as it sounds, check to see if the unit is on and if air can get through the registers.
  4. Can you force the heat or air conditioning to come on? Try adjusting the temperature. Turn on the furnace and set it for a higher temperature (3-5 degrees higher), or the air conditioning (3-5 degrees lower). After 30-60 seconds, if it is working, you will have air coming through the registers.
  5. Is the panel door on the furnace closed completely? If the door came open somehow, the furnace will not operate. You may be able to re-set it by opening the door and pushing the reset button or turning the gas off and back on, following the directions in the owner’s manual for the unit.
  6. If your air conditioner isn’t working, is there water below the unit? If so, dirty coils may have caused the coils to freeze up. Turn the unit off and wait 3-4 hours before trying to clean off the coils and restarting the unit.
  7. Is the outdoor condenser unit clean and free of debris? Dirt, weeds, insects or wildlife can wreak havoc on outdoor air conditioning condenser units. Just as the indoor coils need to be kept clean, the outside unit also should be kept clean and free of debris.
  8. Does the filter need to be cleaned or replaced? A dirty filter can significantly impact the efficiency of your furnace or air conditioner, and cleaning or replacing it could fix the problem.

HVAC Service in Peachtree City, GA

Using these tips, you can diagnose common issues with your HVAC system, and learn to troubleshoot some basic issues on your own. To learn more about our HVAC repair services in Peachtree City, GA, contact Hammond Services online today.

Possible Causes and Solutions for an Electrical Bill That’s Through The Roof

Possible Causes and Solutions for an Electrical Bill That’s Through The Roof

Summer time usually means higher than usual electric bills. While higher temperatures can account for some of the increase, what should you do if you find your electric bill soaring uncontrollably? We have some possible causes for you to investigate as well as some steps you can take toward solving the problem.

Your Electronics Don’t Go to Bed

Our electronic gadgets are responsible for large portions of our electric bill. Computer systems with monitors are particularly large consumers of electricity.  Check your system’s settings and ensure that it is set to go to sleep after 20-30 minutes without use. A sleep setting uses far less energy while keeping your system conveniently ready to use.

You Are Using Too Much Hot Water

Heating water takes a tremendous amount of energy. If your teen suddenly has an affinity for 30-minute showers and washing clothes in hot water, you are paying more than you should for the hot water heater to recover and heat a new tank of water. Limit showers to a more reasonable length and wash your clothes with cold water to enjoy significant savings.

It Is Time for Energy Efficient Upgrades

While a high electric bill in and of itself doesn’t justify a new appliance purchase, keep it in mind when choosing new appliances. That 20-year-old refrigerator in the garage might be keeping your sodas just cold enough, but it may not be worth what you pay in increased electric bills each month. As conventional light bulbs burn out, replace them with more energy-efficient CFL or LED lights.

Your A/C System Needs Attention

We all expect higher utility bills during the hottest summer months. However, if you open a bill that is truly out of control, you may have a malfunctioning A/C unit or heat pump. The compressor may not be running or the unit may have a refrigerant leak. Start by inspecting your outside unit for obvious problems – debris clogging the fans, dirt and debris blocking airflow. Then, contact the professionals at Hammond Services to service the unit. The professionals at Hammond will thoroughly inspect your system, provide routine cleaning services, and repair any defects that are causing your electrical use to soar.

Pet Dander in Your HVAC System? HVAC Repair for Newnan Pet Owners

Pet Dander in Your HVAC System? HVAC Repair for Newnan Pet Owners

If you are a pet owner, you love your pets and wouldn’t trade them for the world. However, pet owners often have problems with allergies and with the performance of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems when pet hair and dander gets into ductwork.

When pet hair and dander accumulate inside the ventilation systems, those allergens are forced out by the furnace or air conditioner and spread all over your home. Over time, this also decreases the effectiveness of your HVAC system, causing you more money in the long run.

Fortunately, there are things homeowners can do to both improve indoor air quality and improve HVAC efficiency. Check out these tips to help keep your HVAC system in tip-top shape:

  1. Clean air ducts. Most experts recommend having your air ducts cleaned at least every three to five years. When you have pets, you may need to have your air ducts cleaned more regularly. Cleaning will help remove not only pet hair and dander, but also bacteria, mold and fungus that can accumulate over time.
  2. Clean your furnace. Having your furnace cleaned through forced air cleaning once each year can remove buildup of pet hair and dander on the furnace motor and fan.
  3. Change air filters. Change the air filter on your HVAC system every two to three months. This is critical when you have pets because pet hair and dander can easily clog filters, decreasing your system’s efficiency.
  4. Make sure ducts are properly sealed. If your air ducts are not properly sealed, pet dander and other debris can build more quickly, aggravating the air quality and efficiency problems that can come with owning pets.
  5. Give your pets regular baths. Bathing your pets regularly can help keep shedding in check and can send hair and dander down the drain rather than into the air.
  6. Consider an air purifier. Adding an air purifier or ionization generator can markedly improve your home’s indoor air quality, helping everyone under your roof breathe easier and sleep better.

We love our pets but we also love breathing easily and comfortably. Fortunately, you do not have to sacrifice air quality or the efficiency of your heating and air conditioning systems. To learn more about ways to improve your HVAC efficiency and HVAC repair in Newnan GA, contact Hammond Services online today.

What’s the Deal With Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters?

What’s the Deal With Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters?

Ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) are intended to help prevent electrocution. If a person starts to receive an electrical shock, the ground fault circuit interrupters can sense this and automatically cut the power to that specific electrical outlet before the person can be seriously injured or even killed. If your home needs GFCIs put in or tested, contact a licensed professional, especially if you do not know exactly what you are doing or are uncomfortable doing it. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

What is a Ground Fault?

According to the National Electrical Code, a “ground fault is a conducting connection between any electric conductor and any conducting material that is grounded or that may become grounded. Electricity always wants to find a path to the ground. In a ground fault, electricity has found a path to ground, but it is a path the electricity was never intended to be on, such as through a person’s body.” Due to the potential risk of shock, a GFCI is used to protect people.

GFCIs are normally installed in places where electrical circuits can come in contact with a water source such as the following:

  • Kitchens  – near the sink, dishwasher, coffee pot or as a general rule any outlet that is near a countertop that is connected to the sink.
  • Bathrooms – near the sink and bathtub/shower, and near the toilet. Most outlets in a bathroom should be GFCIs.
  • Washer and Dryer Room – If you have a separate washer and dryer room, both appliances should use ground fault circuit interrupters. If your washer and dryer are located in another room in the home, you would need a GFCI there as well.
  • Garage – It’s a good idea to have all GFCI outlets in your garage, especially if you use power tools.
  • Outside – Outdoor outlets, especially outlets near a swimming pool.

Many products come with built in GFCIs, such as hair dryers, curling irons, and electric shavers, just to name a few.

How Does a GFCI Work?

The GFCI senses the transformation in the quantity of electricity that is flowing into a circuit compared to what is flowing out, even in small amounts such as 4 milliamps. The GFCI responds quickly (less than one/tenth of a second) to shut off (or trip the circuit shutting off the power flow).

When Should You Test GFCIs?

GFCIs need to be checked every month to make sure they are working correctly; the last thing you want is to get a shock not realizing that the GFCI is not working properly. Seasonal power tools and outdoor equipment should be checked before you use them.

If you need information, any questions answered, or someone to install or check your GFCIs, then contact Hammond Services. We are more than happy to assist you.

Lower Your Cooling Costs with a Smart Thermostat

Lower Your Cooling Costs with a Smart Thermostat

We all want to keep our homes cool and comfortable throughout the long, Georgia summer, but the prospect of sky-high energy bills is daunting. Fortunately, there is an easy, affordable way to have the best of both worlds. Replacing your existing thermostat with a smart thermostat will help your house stay cool when you are there but will adjust automatically when you’re not home, helping to keep your cooling costs in check.

What is a Smart Thermostat?

Long gone are the days when the only option for adjusting the air conditioning temperature for your home meant you had to set your thermostat and manually adjust it each time you wanted to change the temperature. And while programmable thermostats were a definite improvement on the manual kind, they still weren’t perfect and couldn’t adjust for your changing schedule or changing outdoor temperatures. Then came the smart thermostat.

Save Energy & Money with a Smart Thermostat

In the same way that our smart phones can do amazing things, so can smart thermostats. For example, smart thermostats can calculate whether it’s more efficient to adjust the temperature or to turn the system off completely, saving you money in the long run. Some of them can detect when you are home and when you’re not, learn your patterns and preferences, give you a weather report or forecast and even generate reports to show you your energy use over time.

Control Your Home From a Smartphone

Perhaps one of the best features is that your smart thermostat can also be controlled remotely through your smart phone, computer or tablet device, allowing you to override the thermostat and adjust the temperature up or down. You can even remotely shut off the air conditioner completely from wherever you are, whether that’s reclining on the couch in your family room or halfway across the country.

The best part? You do not need to completely overhaul your home’s HVAC system to add a smart thermostat. They can be added to your existing system quickly and easily.

Hammond Services is proud to offer smart thermostats like the Carrier Côr™.  Whatever option you choose to go with, we can help you upgrade your existing HVAC system so you can start saving money on your energy bills right away. Your new smart thermostat will help keep your house at the perfect temperature all the time, without breaking the bank. To learn more, contact us online today for the air conditioner repair Newnan, GA residents trust.

Plumbing Basics Every Homeowner Should Know

Plumbing Basics Every Homeowner Should Know

Do you know how to fix a running toilet? Can you resolve a dripping faucet without calling your plumber? It doesn’t matter if you are a first time homeowner or if you have owned multiple properties, there are a few plumbing basics that you should know.

Three Plumbing Basics To Learn Today

It is always advisable to leave the large plumbing challenges to a trusted plumber; however, there are a few plumbing DIY basics that you can and should know.

1. Fixing A Running Toilet

A running toilet is not only a nuisance, but it is also a waste of water. Running toilets are most often caused by a high water level or a worn out tank flapper. To adjust the water level, you can simply turn the toilet’s adjustment screw. Next, flush the toilet to see if the problem is resolved. Repeat these steps as necessary to reduce the high water level. If your toilet’s tank flapper is worn out, then you will need to purchase a replacement part. Be sure to turn off the toilet’s water valve and flush the toilet before you install the replacement tank flapper. Once the new tank flapper is installed, you should turn the water on and flush the toilet to make sure that the problem is completely resolved.

2. Resolving A Dripping Faucet

Like a running toilet, a dripping faucet can be quite annoying to homeowners and house guests. One of the easiest ways to fix a dripping faucet is to replace the old washer with a new one. Replacing the washer will require you to first remove the faucet handle cap. Next, use a socket wrench to remove the valve from the faucet. Once you have access to the faucet washer, you should carefully remove the old washer and install a new one. Carefully screw everything back on. Turn the faucet on to make sure that the water flows smoothly without leaking; when you turn the faucet back off the dripping should cease completely.

3. Turning Off Water Mains

If you ever encounter a major water leak, then you will need to turn off the water main(s) to your home. To do so, find the valve that is located near your home’s water meter. If you can’t find the valve, call your utility company to ask if it is buried underground. Switch the valve into the “off” position and immediately call your trusted plumber to resolve your major water leak.

To learn additional plumbing basics, or to resolve large piping issues, contact the trusted team at Hammond Services. Whether you have a major water leak, need pipes replaced, or have a question about a basic plumbing issue, the team at Hammond Services is standing by to help you keep your home’s plumbing system in top shape!

New Plumbing Products That Can Help Conserve Water

New Plumbing Products That Can Help Conserve Water

If your house has gone years without receiving plumbing home improvements, you may be wasting a great deal of water. Not only is this bad for the environment,but it’s also terrible for your wallet. Fortunately, a few simple updates can significantly reduce your water usage. Keep reading to learn the facts and tips you need to know to save.

Energy Star Dishwashers and Washing Machines

Dishwashers, washing machines, and other appliances are more energy efficient than ever before. Newer models are also excellent for saving water, and, if you get the right dishwasher, you could use even less water than you would while washing by hand.

Low-flow Shower heads and Shower Regulators

High water pressure feels nice when you’re taking a shower, but standard shower heads can be incredibly wasteful, especially if used on a daily basis. Low-flow showers greatly reduce the amount of water used in an average shower session. If you aren’t eager to get rid of your current shower head, consider installing a regulator, which makes your current shower arm more efficient.

Leak Detection Devices

The most efficient dishwashers, shower heads, and toilets won’t help you if leaks occur. Fortunately, a variety of effective leak detection devices can quickly alert you to emerging leaks and help you nip these problems in the bud. To stay on top of leaks, install detection devices on your toilet, your washing machine, and even your refrigerator. Not only will you prevent wasted water, but you’ll also prevent the significant household damage that accompanies flooding.

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters provide a more compact means of supplying hot water on demand. They allow homeowners to enjoy the convenience of immediate hot water without having to store large tanks of water, as in traditional water heater systems. This approach saves both water and energy, making it the ideal solution for Eco-friendly and budget-conscious homes.

From Energy Star appliances to tankless water heaters, a variety of plumbing home improvements can save your family quite a bit of money and turn your home into a greener, more efficient place. Get in touch with our team at Hammond Services today to learn how our plumbing experts can help you reduce your water consumption.

My A/C Is Broken! Repair or Replace?

My A/C Is Broken! Repair or Replace?

If you don’t think an air conditioning system has a brain, just wait until it chooses to quit on the hottest day of the year. If that happens, you may wonder if it is best to have the old unit resuscitated, or if it would be wiser to replace it with a new model. If your unit quits so often you have your A/C repair expert on speed dial, or if the repair costs will total half or more of the value of the unit…well, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out it is time to replace it. But what if neither is the case? What if your unit still runs, although a little noisily? Or what if you have noticed your energy bills rising a little more than usual during the summer months, yet the unit still does the job? That makes the decision much more challenging.

Is there a Precise Age Cutoff for Replacing my A/C?

As you can guess, the age of your current unit is a key factor. But there is no magical age that delineates between repair and replace. A/C units on average can last 15 years or more. However, that does not mean you should keep yours that long, because it may be so inefficient that it is costing you money even if it does not need emergency repairs. Even if your current unit is only 10 years old, it may be time to replace it.

How Efficient is your Current A/C Unit?

A/C systems have a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER), which indicates how much power a unit requires to cool. The higher the SEER – a ratio of 15,for example – the more efficient the unit is. The federal government increased the minimum allowable SEER rating in 2006 from 10 to 13. Therefore,if your A/C unit was manufactured prior to 2006, it may not be nearly as efficient as even the cheapest new units manufactured today. According to energy.gov, you can reduce your A/C bills 20%-40% if you replace a ten-year-old system. A/C systems manufactured today are much more efficient than even a few years ago.

Other Things to Consider

Other considerations: No one will disagree that buying a new A/C unit can be expensive. However, you may be eligible for a federal tax credit when you buy a new energy-efficient system. Also, many local municipalities and utilities offer rebates for homeowners who replace inefficient appliances.

Don’t worry. You do not need to figure out all this by yourself. Hammond Services has been consulting homeowners around Griffin and Newnan, GA on the repair vs. replace question for many years. We can help walk you through every option so you can make an informed choice. That means understanding SEER ratings, utility costs, and other factors that play into the repair or replace equation. Please contact us today to arrange a no-obligation consultation regarding ac repair in Newnan, GA.