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Old 09-15-2005, 01:13 PM   #21
CarbonJames
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Re: Residential A/C and heating

yeah but i dont think we'll be able to get our hands on any.. chances are as new as your house is, it wont be that dirty at all..
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Old 09-16-2005, 12:14 AM   #22
Ramius
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Re: Residential A/C and heating

You have two sets of coils to clean actually, one set thats inside your house and another set thats outside.. however, if your putting out 60 degree air you are doing awesome.

As far as chemicals to clean them, hit up my pager some time and I'll hook you up , I've got it all From ph 14 (nasty nasty nasty nasty ) to some self-rinsing green stuff (100Xs better than home depot stuff but not harsh enough to damage coil)

I'm not worried about money as long as you come pick it up from me, I work in the galleria on sundays and downtown the rest of the week. ohyeah, you'll need some kind of spray bottle, empty windex bottle or gallon sized chemical sprayer, it doesn't matter.
If you come and get some, I'll give ya instructions on how not to mess up your day with it.*

__________________________________________________ _________________________________________________

Really, to use a general rule of thumb to tell if your unit is cooling properly or not, go by this, Measure the temperature of the air by your air filter, this is called "the return air". Then measure the temperature of the air coming out at the closest register (where the air comes out) from your air handler (the inside* unit). Ideally in a perfect world you would see a 20 degree difference between the two. Anything above 16 degrees difference is fine, if your getting less than that, you could have a problem.

Another thing you can do, and this is probably the easiest, is check for a "sweatback" on your suction line, go to your outside unit and look for two copper lines going to your unit, a fat one and a skinny one.. just like in Gym Class, if everything is happening like it should, the fat one will be all sweaty and wet. This is an excellent sign of a good charge.

Granted there are more scientific ways to do this, but thats a quick and easy do-it-yourself test.

For those of you people with an Amp Meter, you can also check the amp draw on your outside unit. If you have an amp meter I'm going to assume you know how to use it... so What your going to want to check is the amperage your compressor is pulling, you will have three wires going to it, the highest one is the reading you want.

Say your unit is rated at 20 Full Load Amps, you want it to be pulling at that if your house is 100 degrees inside and the unit is working it's off, otherwise known as a "High Heat Pumpdown" if it's just maintaining the setpoint that you have on your thermostat it's fine for it to be a little bit less.

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Sorry for the long post, but it's not often someone asks a question that I know anything about, any other questions feel free to ask :biggthumpup:
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Old 09-16-2005, 12:24 AM   #23
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Re: Residential A/C and heating

Ohyeah, I forgot to mention, I get a lot of calls from people who's air conditioners are working just fine, but they fail to take in the fact that we had a lot of 100+ degree days this year. Air conditioners are not designed to work like refrigerators.. as in "It's always 42 degrees in this box"

Just because you set your thermistat to X degree doesn't mean your house is going to get there. Your air conditioner can only remove so much heat per minute, think of it like a bucket thats got water in it, with a hole in the bottom and a water faucet on top filling it.

The water in the bucket is heat, the water running into the bucket is heat load from our friend the sun, the hole in the bucket is the heat that your air conditioner is taking out of the bucket, on a cloudy day the faucet is just dripping water in, and it's coming out faster than it goes in, thats why your air will cut on/'off or "cycle". On these cloudless 100+ degree days, the water is coming in faster than it can go out, and thats why your house feels warmer and your a/c runs longer.

There are a couple of things you can do to help this, but not a whole lot.

one solution, for those of you with attics, is to install some kind of powered exhaust in your attic. I have been in attics during the summer where the temperature is WAAAY in excess of 120 degrees. It's like sitting down under a shade tree with a hot water bottle on top of your head, your body won't cool down until you get that bottle off of there.

You can install a powered exhaust with a thermostat that is set to say 120 degrees, so that above 120 degrees, it will exhaust that air out and below 120 degrees it will cut off to save power. This will help your ac unit not run nearly as often and make your house more comfortable too.

Another thing you can look into is upgrading your insulation, I'm not sure how cost effective this is though because I'm not really in touch with the price of insulation.

But you need to keep in mind, your house will only cool say 20 degree's or so below what the outside temperature is, so if it's 100 degree's outside and your house is at 80 inside, you just might be doing the best that you can, it doesn't mean your ac is faulty.
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Old 09-16-2005, 08:10 AM   #24
CarbonJames
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Re: Residential A/C and heating

Ramius, thanks for all your help, ive learned quite abit here,
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