Archive for: Furnances, Heat Pumps & Heating

Ice, Ice Baby!

Hello Everyone,


Hopefully, you are staying warm! The only words that come to mind are Ice, Ice Baby!  Then that 1990’s tune begins to play in my head!

[stextbox id=”warning”]If you are having problems with your heating, please call 843-821-0937.  As long as the roads are passable, we will try and help![/stextbox]

The power at our house has gone out several times this morning. The rain has been falling all morning, and the temperature hasn’t risen.  There are several bridges closed, and the roadways are dangerous.

crepe myrtleAs I am writing this, our power has gone out again. I cannot remember when the electricity to our home has been so unstable.  It just shows that amazing power of simple elements like rain, cold, ice, etc. Fortunately, my battery on my laptop hasn’t died yet, and I am using my cell phones hot spot to connect to the internet.  All is well.

frozen palm treeThis morning, I took our two pugs out to potty.  It was so rainy and cold.  Of course, the dogs weren’t thrilled about going outside.  As we were walking around the neighborhood, I noticed how sad the Palm trees looked.  Normally, they are so perky.  They always remind me of the beach… a warm, sandy, breezy beach.  A far cry from what it is right now.

In Summerville, Main Street and the bridge on the Berlin G Myers Parkway has been closed.  The local news just reported that a large pine tree has fallen on top of a mobile home.  This is much worse that I thought that it would be.

I hope that your heat is working and you are safe at home with your family. If you have to be out in this mess, be patient and take your time.  I often say that I would rather wait a few minutes longer, than wait for an ambulance to arrive!



Hot Upstairs, Cold Downstairs? Cold Upstairs Hot Downstairs?

Are you Hot Upstairs, Cold Downstairs? or Cold Upstairs, Hot Downstairs?

Hello Everyone,

Do you have a problem with your upstairs being too hot and your downstairs being too cold?  Or, maybe that is vice-versa?  Well, I have that problem at my house!  (Another scenario could be that you have a room that is too hot or too cold.)

It can be very frustrating and uncomfortable.  Sometimes, I think that it is so hot upstairs (especially in the winter) that I am going to get a nose bleed.  If my wife and I set the thermostat for 72 downstairs, the upstairs is blazing hot.

Unfortunately, the builders did not put a zoned system or two individual units in our house. A zoned system is simply a single air conditioning/heating unit that uses two thermostats and dampers within the actual ductwork.

In my case, one thermostat could be located on the first floor; the second thermostat could be installed on the second floor.  Then, there are dampers in the ductwork that open and close based on which thermostat is calling for air or heat.

So, here are 3 possible solutions.

Solution #1 – Add an additional unit, thermostat and modify the duct work

two air conditioning unitsThis first solution is to add an additional air conditioner / heater, thermostat and modify the duct work system. This is probably the best solution, however it is not the least expensive.

When you add the additional air conditioning / heating unit to your home, you can now cool or heat each area independently.  In addition, if one of the units ever breaks down, you will have the other unit to keep you comfortable in one of the areas of your house.  This is especially nice in the summer when it is blazing hot!

Another option in this category is adding or changing your entire home over to mini-split / ductless units.  These units are extremely cost effective and will allow you to control the temperature in each room or zone that is set up.  This is a great option, but again, it is not the least expensive route.  Check out this page! It is dedicated to mini-splits / ductless systems.

Solution #2 – Convert to a Zoned System

zoned air conditioning systemIf you have a single air conditioning/heating unit, you can have the ductwork converted and an additional thermostat installed.  Now, this sounds simple, and it is, however, it is labor intensive.

Basically, most of the work is done on the duct system that you currently have in place.  The duct is modified with a bypass, zone dampers, a zone control board are added to the system.  Additionally, another thermostat must be added.  You can have several zones.

Once the zoned system has been set up, the dampers are controlled by the zone board and the thermostats.  When one of the zones need more cooling or heat, the dampers are regulated to send what is needed to the zone that is calling for it. Of course with this set up, you can get cooling or heating, but not at the same time.

This is a very viable solution to this problem, and lots of homes in the Charleston / Summerville / Mt. Pleasant area are already set up with systems like this.  This is not the least expensive solution, however, it is not as expensive as adding an additional unit (**in most cases).

Solution #3 – Upgrade your Thermostat

honeywell thermostatSolution # 3 is one that I am trying now.  I have upgraded my current thermostat to a new color display, programmable thermostat.  The thermostat that I have chosen, is a Honeywell thermostat.

The thermostat that I chose is the Prestige IAQ 2.0 Comfort System.  This thermostat not only reads the temperature, but it also has several add-ons that make it really nice.

The first convenience item that I would like to mention is the outdoor wireless sensor.  This sensor is mounted outside AND it is wireless.  This sensor reads the outside temperature and the humidity.

The second convenience item is the duct sensors.  These sensors monitor the air temperature coming into your system, and the temperature of the air being distributed throughout your home.  If there isn’t enough temperature difference, it will alert you that there is a problem.

remote control thermostatThe third add-on is a remote thermostat.  The thermostat is portable and acts like a remote control.  Now, you have the capability to take it upstairs with you.  You decide which thermostat you want to control the system, and the system responds accordingly.

Here is an example of how I use this… During the day, Staci and I are usually downstairs. Their is a 3 – 5 degree difference between the upstairs and downstairs.  So, during the day, the thermostat that is mounted downstairs is in control.  This is the great part!!  At night, we have the portable thermostat in our bedroom.  Now, the system can cool or heat based on where we are, and based on our comfort!

As you know, humidity is a huge factor in our personal comfort.  This thermostat measures humidity through its internal sensors. The nice part is that there is a setting to help control the humidity by using your existing air conditioning and heating unit.  (Note: For major humidity issues, a dehumidifier may be necessary.)

The forth add-on is one of my favorites!  I cannot help it, I am a techno-geek.  I love most things that are technologically based. This add-on has the ability to go wifi.  Yes, you can control your thermostat from a computer, your smartphone or your ipad!  Awesome!! If you forget to set your air conditioner or heater, no problem.  Just connect through the Honeywell app and your are in business!

Solution #3 is a very cost effective way to be comfortable with your current system.  In addition, this thermostat can control dehumidifiers, humidifiers, air quality products and uv lights. You can even change the color scheme to match the room that you put it in.

If you are too hot or too cold, give us a call at 843-821-0937 to discuss the options that will best suit you, your family and your budget!


Arctic Air Online Service Request

Heater not working? Water lines broke? We can help…Call Now!

Heater not working? Water lines broke? We can help…Call Now!

If you are having trouble with your heating, we are here to help!  We have technicians standing by.  We should be able to get to you today.  Give us a call at 843-821-0937 or submit a service request online!


Call Arctic Air Inc Today! Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, Commercial Refrigeration

Air Conditioning, Heating, Commercial Refrigeration, Charleston SC, Twitter, @ArcticAirInc



Hey…Do you have GAS?

Hey … Do you have GAS?  If you do, you will surely know it.  Of course, I am talking about a GAS furnace!

Now that I have your attention, please continue to read.  This is very important.   It looks like it is going to get unseasonably cold in the Charleston Area. It is necessary to have your heater checked for its annual inspection. It is a matter of life and death, especially if you have a gas furnace heating your home.

Arctic AirIt’s an industry standard: if a furnace has a cracked heat exchanger, it gets replaced.  The American Gas Association has even put this in writing – they say “Any visible crack or hole is reason for requiring replacement of the heat exchanger or furnace.”  When we inspect a furnace and find a cracked heat exchanger, we always recommend replacing it.

heat exchangerHeat exchangers are present in all gas furnaces. Gas is ignited and used to heat up the heat exchanger. After the heat exchanger is hot, the air around the exchanger is warmed. This air will then be distributed throughout the system. Gas furnaces will last anywhere between ten to twenty years, during this lifetime heat exchangers will heat up and cool down thousands of times. Eventually the structural integrity of the metal will give in and the metal will break. These breaks usually occur as small cracks and holes in the heat exchanger.

A cracked heat exchanger is very dangerous for two major reasons. First, Carbon Monoxide could leak out of the furnace and into the home. Second, gas could leak out of the furnace and into the home. Carbon Monoxide (or CO) is a byproduct of combustion and poisonous.

Every home with gas HVAC equipment or appliances  should be equipped with a CO detector as well as a smoke detector. In addition to having these two detectors, every home with a gas furnace should be inspected annually by a certified HVAC technician. Inspections and detectors can keep your family safe and give you peace of mind. If you do not have a CO Detector or have not had your gas furnace equipment maintained or inspected in over a year, contact Arctic Air Inc to  have your equipment taken of care today.

So what’s the big deal with cracks or holes?  A cracked heat exchanger could allow exhaust gas from the furnace to contaminate the household air with carbon monoxide. Symptoms of mild acute poisoning include lightheadedness, confusion, headachesvertigo, and flu-like effects; larger exposures can lead to significant toxicity of the central nervous system and heart, and even death (Wikipedia).

If you have not had your gas furnace checked this year, it is time to do it now. You and your family are worth it.

Call today! 843-821-0937

Save Money!

Fall/Winter Energy Saving Tips

The following tips will save you energy and help your budget as the weather cools down.

Energy savings tip

  • Set your thermostat no higher than 68 degrees when you are home and lower the temperature when you go to bed or when you are not at home. This will ensure optimal home heating and save energy. (*This one may be tough, but it will save you money.)
  • For every degree you lower your thermostat you save about 2 percent off your heating bill.
  • Cut annual heating bills by as much as 10 percent a year by turning your thermostat back 10 to 15 percent for eight hours a day.
  • Weatherize your home by caulking and weather-stripping all doors and windows. Also use locks on your windows to make them tighter and draft resistant.

  • Insulate or increase the amount of insulation in your attic, basement and outside walls. Also cover through-the-wall air conditioners to prevent cold air from leaking into your home.insulation
  • Reducing air leaks could cut 10 percent from an average household’s monthly energy bill. The most common places where air escapes homes are: floors, walls, ceilings, ducts, fireplaces, plumbing penetrations, doors, windows, fans, vents and electrical outlets.
  • Keep shades and curtains open during the day on the south side of your home to allow solar heating. Close them at night to retain heat.
  • Don’t block your radiators or heating vents with furniture or draperies. Keep your radiators, registers and baseboard heaters dirt and dust free. Close vents and doors in unused rooms.
  • Have your heating system serviced once a year and regularly replace furnace filters. During the heating season, change or clean furnace filters once a month.(**hint hint…call  Arctic Air (843-821-0937)
  • Close the fireplace damper when not in use.water heater thermostat
  • Turn your water heater down to 120 degrees Fahrenheit to save money on your energy bill. If you have children in the house, this is also a safety measure
  • Install water-flow restrictors in showerheads and faucets.
  • Place a sheet of aluminum foil between the radiator and the wall to reflect heat back into the room.

Heater Tune-up Special

Is your heater ready for winter?  We have a Heater Tune-Up Special for all of our friends…

The Coastal Carolina Fair is coming to town October 31, 2013.  Not only is the fair coming to town, but usually the cold weather follows.  To help you prepare for the season, we are offering a heater tune-up special.

We would also like to invite you to visit our Facebook page, where we will share tips on how to save money!  (Click here)

Call today to schedule your heater tune-up special.  This is for the month of October.  You all know that when the fair comes into town, the temperature always seems to drop.  Don’t get caught out in the cold!