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1st Day of Spring is Today 3/20/18

Follow these steps to transition from Winter and Spring and Summer:

It is generally a good idea to consider doing some basic maintenance on your air conditioning and heating system at the beginning of every heating and cooling season. Here are six important things to check before switching the wall thermostat to cooling:
1. Repair or replace any damaged pipe insulation: The suction line (the larger copper pipe on the outdoor unit) helps to supply cool refrigerant back to the compressor in the outdoor unit. If the system’s suction pipe has damaged insulation, this could cause a loss of required cooling for the outdoor unit which could damage your system and may also cause you to lose energy as well.   
2. Remove any debris from the outdoor coil: Depending on where you live or what side of the house your system is located on, you might find trash or vegetation blown into or against the coil. The system condenser coils are designed to transfer heat, and any debris limits this effect.   
3. Change the air filters: The change in seasons is usually a good time to replace your indoor air filters. Especially after a bitter winter where it's lkely that your indoor air filter will have gathered a lot more debris and dust than normal, you should be sure to change the filter before the cooling season.  
4. Check the condensate drain line: Since the coil’s temperature is lower than the ambient air, water will condense on the coil and drip into the tray below.   
5. Clean the supply vents and return grills: Make sure the both the supply and return air grills and vents are open and free of debris. It would also be good to use the vacuum to remove any pet hair or dust that might have accumulated during the previous season.  
6. Turn it on and make sure it works: After going through the check list, wait for a nice, hot day when you have some time to check the air coming out of the indoor vents for the first few minutes after starting it, and then every few hours throughout the day. After the first few minutes, you should feel cool air coming out of the registers. If no air is coming out, or if the air coming out does not feel cool, then something is wrong and you should immediately turn the system off at the thermostat and call a good HVAC contractor like Air Temperature Specialists at 951-894-6830 for assistance.

Post-Winter HVAC Care for Homeowners

While our region doesn’t face the same winter problems as many other areas around the country, we are still subject to lower temperatures during winter. Air Temperature Specialists recommends keeping a close eye on your HVAC system after this season. Winter weather will keep your HVAC system busy, so it’s helpful to understand and prepare for a few common HVAC problems, such as the following:   

Faulty Thermostat

A faulty thermostat is a typical problem for a heating and air conditioning system. Often, the fault lies with the thermostat itself. However, a damaged furnace can also be a culprit. The lack of proper airflow can lead to some parts of the furnace to heat up too quickly, causing the emergency stop system to activate. Call the experts at ATS so we can diagnose and fix whatever ails your unit.

Dirty Air Filters

The purpose of your heating and air conditioning system’s air filters is to remove particles from the air moving through your system. Debris will steadily accumulate in your filters and form clogs if the filters are not replaced in a timely manner.

March HVAC Maintenance

Winter’s on its way out, but it’s not quite spring – what the heck do you do with your HVAC system when it’s warm one day and chilly the next? HVAC maintenance is a year-round job, and the monthly tasks you complete will keep your heating and cooling systems healthy throughout every season. This month, run through our March HVAC Maintenance checklist to keep your heating and cooling equipment in top shape.  
* Check your air filter. During periods of heavy heating system use, the filter should be inspected monthly to make sure it has not become full of contaminants. You may find it necessary to replace it sooner than the 3-month mark during these times, so have a replacement ready just in case.  
Inspect all registers and return air grilles in your home to ensure they have not been blocked or shut. These vents should never be blocked, as doing so will restrict airflow through your HVAC systems, which could create performance issues and system overheating.
* Keep the area surrounding your heating equipment clear. Never store items directly by the furnace, especially flammable or combustible material such as rags, wood, gasoline, paint, solvent, and cleaners.

21 Indoor Air Quality Solutions to Care for Your Air

When it comes to indoor air quality we're sure you would go above and beyond to keep your family safe and breathing the best air possible. 

The solutions are simple that will bring more fresh air into your home and improve your indoor air quality and reduce those pesky household contaminants.

If you're looking for actionable tips that you can use today, then you'll love this article.

Many homes fall short when it comes to healthy indoor air quality.


The benefits of houseplants cannot be overstated. Houseplants clean the air. Houseplants actually breathe. They take in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen. People and animals take in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. By bringing plants into your home, you're creating a symbiotic relationship, filtering the air, creating fresh oxygen, and beautifying your home. Here are some good houseplants you may want to consider:  

  • Aloe Plant - the Aloe plant is a great choice because it's pleasant to look at and it's easy to care for, but it has some other great attributes:

    • it is great for cuts, burns, and detoxing your body

    • its leaves will show brown spots when there is an abundance of harmful chemicals in the air

  • English Ivy - English Ivy is another easy to care for houseplant, with amazing attributes. NASA scientists have rated English Ivy as the best houseplant for filtering air. It is also the best known houseplant for filtering formaldehyde.

  • Rubber Tree - Rubber trees clean the air, thrive in poor lighting, do well in cooler climates, and require minimal care. They also efficiently remove toxins from the air.

  • Snake Plant - the Snake plant is unusual because it releases oxygen during the night, while most plants only release oxygen during the day. It doesn't need much water or light.

  • Bamboo Palm - this attractive plant also made NASA's list of great purifying plants. It is effective at removing benzene and trichloroethylene from the air.

  • Red-Edged Dracaena - this vibrantly beautiful plant is great for adding some flair to your decorating, as well as cleaning toxins from the air, such as xylene, trichloroethylene, and formaldehyde.


Your home, especially if it is newer, does not breathe well. It re-circulates the same air, over and over. This can be a real problem for indoor air quality. By cracking the windows, you are letting fresh air into your home.

By keeping the floors clean, mopping, vacuuming, and utilizing doormats, you are removing particles that will eventually end up in the air.


One of the best indoor air quality tips that will keep your air quality at optimum levels is to just turn your furnace blower on. This serves to re-circulate the air, in your home, through your intake and back out of your home's supply ducts.

Also make sure your furnace has a filter system with UV lights. UV lights kill microbial bacterial and mold spores. A furnace equipped with a UV light filtration system cleans your air as much as 90% better, which dramatically increases your indoor air quality.

Make certain your furnace has been serviced. If your furnace isn't working up to par, it will not clean your air as well. It can also cause more maintenance problems or even stop working altogether. It is important to keep your furnace serviced regularly. Contact your furnace service provider for the best maintenance program for your unit.


The air filter in your HVAC system is the front line of defense against poor indoor air quality. A typical central heating and cooling system circulates over 1,000 cubic feet per minute of air through the filter. This means the entire air volume in your house passes through the filter multiple times every day.

A clean filter effectively removes airborne particulates, ranging from dust to invisible microscopic particles. A dirty filter, however, can actually make indoor air quality worse by acting as a reservoir for dirt, dust and other airborne contaminants that are continuously circulated back into your breathing air.

During both the heating and cooling season, change the air filter monthly. Instead of cheap, throwaway fiberglass panel filters, choose quality pleated fabric filters rated to trap airborne particles down to a size of 3 microns. 


Replacing stale indoor air is another option for homeowners asking how to improve indoor air quality. Simply opening doors and windows isn’t a viable option in frigid winter weather or the heat of summer.

The goal of proper ventilation is balance. Remove stagnant, unhealthy air and replace it with an equal amount of fresh, filtered outdoor air to dilute indoor contaminants and restore healthy air quality. Heat recovery ventilators (HRV) are now the gold standard for residential ventilation.


Humidity accumulates in tightly-sealed residential environments due to activities like cooking, bathing and simply breathing. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends indoor humidity levels between 30 percent and 60 percent. High indoor humidity creates a breeding ground for toxic mold and bacteria.

High humidity will make your home IAQ take a considerable effort to maintain. Using a dehumidifier will help you manage the quality of your air that can trigger health issues in your home.

The optimum humidity level in your home depends on your personal preferences, clothing, and level of physical activity.

ASHRAE* suggests a range of 45% - 55% humidity to manage health effects and illnesses.

How Does a Furnace Work?

Most people know furnaces heat their homes or businesses, but have HVAC questions about how exactly that is done. Furnaces heat your home or business by warming air and circulating it into the living or work areas indoors. Furnaces are electric, or powered by a heating fuel such as oil, natural gas, or propane.


In a gas furnace, when a heating cycle is called for by your thermostat, the system’s pilot light or ignitor will fire up the burners in the combustion chamber. The burners produce heat, that moves into the heat exchanger. Within the heat exchanger, that heat is transferred to the air cycling through the furnace. The system’s blower then moves the heated air through the duct system and into your home or business. The system keeps running like this until the temperature in the room reaches the temperature called for by your thermostat.


In an electric furnace, electricity starts the heating process rather than a pilot light or ignitor. Heating elements are used to warm the air rather than a gas burner. Air passes through the heating element’s electric resistance coils, where heat is transferred to the air supply. Then the blower circulates heat to interior areas.

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