Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if I have an existing warranty on my furnace, air conditioner or HVAC system?

Locatethe label on the exterior of the equipment for a manufacture date. Equipment less than five years old may have a warranty, but also may not based on the make. Warranty terms and conditions vary by manufacturer and the installing company. Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning can figure out the warranty status of your heating and cooling system via System Inspection. We also offer a Platinum PLUSTM Protection Plan for home heating and air conditioning systems, regardless of the age of your equipment or manufacturer warranty status.



Is sound an issue for heating and air conditioning?

Yes. Heating and cooling that make a lot of noiseadd to sound pollution. Although no monetary savings are tied to less sound in your home, the sound rating of a cooling system can have a significant effect on comfort and enjoyment of your Albany home. The sound level of an air conditioner or heat pump depends on a variety of factors, such as how old and who manufactured the equipment, and the insulation of the compressor can add to the amount of noise it makes.

Although many heating and cooling systems manufactured today are quieter than they ever have been, it's a good thought to compare sound ratings when evaluating a new air conditioner or heat pump, particularly if the equipment location is near bedrooms or living rooms.



What is a Precision Tune-up and how much does it cost?

Besides the comprehensive visual inspection that comes with our System Inspection, a Precision Tune-up also includes a full maintenance cleaning and lubrication of the heating or air conditioning equipment components. Discover more here about Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning’s Precision Tune-up steps . The expense of a tune-up varies by season, and may generally vary from $69 to $159. Printable coupons with seasonal discounts on tune-ups can often be found on our Coupons page.



What's causing my duct work to pop when the furnace starts or stops?

A popping disturbance is a typically sign of an under-sized duct design. It may be attributed to greater air flow than the duct work is able to manage. Have a qualified company analyze your home’s ventilation system for proper design and recommend adjustments. Improper duct work layout can cause a number of ventilation and air quality problems, including excessive noise.



When substituting the outdoor unit, should the indoor unit also be replaced?

The answer is, typically, yes. Here's why.

Matched System Design: All air conditioner and heat pump outdoor units are speciallyconstructed to work with a matched indoor unit for the best efficiency and performance. The result of this matched equipment is a harmonized, top-performance team that ensures dependability and efficiency. Air conditioner and heat pump outdoor units may ”operate” with indoor units other than those for which they have been preciselyconstructed; however, the effect would be a definite compromise in system performance.

Design Advances: As research has improved, indoor blower coil units have undergone numerous design advances — especially in the areas of air handling performance, filtering efficiency and operating sound levels. An up-to-date outdoor unit will also incorporate the latest design advances.

Higher Cooling And Heating Efficiency: The cooling and/or heating efficiency ratings that are presented for an air conditioner or heat pump are based on their performance as matched systems. While changing only the outdoor unit may consequence in improved efficiency when looking at your new system, efficiency will be lacking from what it was designed to be, and your savings will be not as much as with a matched system.

Equipment Age: If an air conditioner or heat pump is 10 years old or more and is ready for replacement, the indoor unit is likely just as old and has been subjected to the same amount of wear and tear. Substituting both units means you won't have to replacethe indoor unit in a brief time period… you'll have more years of efficient service with both units.

New Warranty: A new unit also gives you a new product warranty. Substituting the indoor unit at the same time as the outdoor unit results in peace of mind, knowing that the new warranty covers the entire system for the same period of time.

A Bargain: At first glance, changing only the outdoor air conditioner or heat pump may appear to be a bargain. But, when you consider the lower cooling and heating efficiencies, decreased reliability and high cost of ownership that results, it's not such a bargain. Replacing an entire system may cost more, but you get much more efficiency, reliability and comfort for years into the future.



Why don't you charge by the hour?

Similar to a value menu at nearby restaurants, charging a flat rate cost as opposed to an hourly costdelivers more value for our customers because nothing is excluded, the pricing is up-front, and it does not change. Regardless of the cost of parts or amount of time it takes to complete the repairs, the price will not change. This reason is one of many why Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning is the most trusted name in Albany.



Why is it important to have regular maintenance on my home comfort system?

You probably wouldn't get a brand-new car and plan to never have to add air to the tires, change the oil and examine any unfamiliar noises. Your home comfort system is like your car’s engine, it’s a mechanical device with a motor, electrical components... and even fuel. So it is critical to have routine maintenance of your home comfort system by a qualified technician. If not properly and routinely maintained, even the best heating and air conditioning equipment could have difficulties and become less 'fuel' efficient over time.



Why is my AC system freezing up?

There are an abundance ofitems that can cause your HVAC system to freeze up; many of them usually need to be corrected by a professional technician. Determining the air filter is clean or replaced and determining the airflow is not restricted are about the only things a homeowner should safely investigate or handle themself.

Low refrigerant: Sometimes, freezing up originates with a leak in the refrigerant lines. Weak solder joints, friction from piping rubbing or vibrating against an object, leaking valves or loose fittings can cause leaks. How long your system has been operating and the type and location of the leak are the determining factors on whether to have the system repaired or replaced.

Dirty evaporator coil: In time, the evaporator coil will become dirty. When this happens, the results are similar to those of having a dirty filter. Progressively you will lose airflow, slowly enough that you probably would not realize it until it freezes up or is not cooling adequately. You will need to contact your local Service Experts sales and service center to fix the problem.

Defective blower motor or relay: A blower motor operating at the wrong speed or not running at all can cause freezing. It can also be sporadic, starting at full speed and slowing down after it heats up. Or a relay could cause it to start one time and not the next. In either scenario, you will need to contact your local Service Experts sales and service center to correct the problem.

Should you discover that your system was freezing due to a dirty air filter, after replacing or cleaning the filter, you can hasten the thawing process by turning the system off and then turning on only the fan. If you have a heat pump system, you can try turning the system to heating mode until the ice has melted. After the ice has melted, turn the system settings back to normal. If the system refreezes, contact Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning in Albany to correct the problem.



What is a Zoning System for a heating and air conditioning system?

Zoning Systems separate your home’s duct work into individual comfort areas, allowing for independent temperature control in distinct areas that demand specific temperature conditioning.

For example, a cathedral-style room with large bay windows may remain too hot in the summer and feel too cold in the winter. A Zoning System will direct more conditioned air to this large, sun-drenched area to help make up for the heat gained or lost through the windows. An additional example of areas that could benefit from Zoning might be a nursery, home theater or music studio, where different temperatures may be needed in each room for the comfort and enjoyment of the people occupying these rooms. Families today have different lifestyles and comfort needs. Perhaps you have a home office that needs extra conditioning during the day and none at night. Or you only use the upstairs or back bedrooms when guests visit. No matter what your needs, a zoning system can maintain each area of your house at the perfect temperature for you and each family member.

Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning provides free estimates and a complimentary consultation on Zoning Systems, call 518-417-2938 today if you think a new Zoning System could help solve your home comfort challenges.



When should I install a Zoning System?

If you are modifying your Albany area home air conditioner, furnace or heat pump, it is a good time to also install a new zoning system to address hot and cold spots or special temperature requirements in the home. When your new comfort equipment is coordinated by a zoning system, you will gainprecision temperature control in each zone.

Zoning is also a great idea for new homes since the system can be installed during construction. If you are purchasing a new home, check with your builder about a zoning system. It could make the difference between just enjoying your new house and being truly comfortable in it.



Are all HVAC air filters the same?

Lennox has over a century of history producing some of the best heating and air conditioning systems available anywhere. Your Grandma and Grandpa likely had Lennox equipment in their home—and in some cases still using that same system!

If you have Lennox equipment to meet your heating and cooling needs, you can count on Roland J. Down Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning in [[target location]] to deliver factory-authorized professional service and repair.

We are a licensed, highly qualified, nationally certified heating and air conditioning contractor, with the skills and training to keep your Lennox HVAC equipment operating in top form. And with utility costs that meet your budget.

Reach out to Roland J. Down Service Experts in Albany today at 518-417-2938 for a Precision Tune-Up. That’s what we call our routine maintenance service available to assure reliable, energy-efficient operation of your Lennox furnace or AC system.

Or, if your Lennox heating and cooling equipment should ever need repair, give us a call anytime, 24/7/365.



Can indoor air be hazardous to your health?

Absolutely. Exposure to air pollutants can be up to 100 times higher indoors than outdoors. The American Lung Association estimates that most people spend 90 percent of their time indoors, making indoor air quality (IAQ) a critical component of home comfort. Many common household items contribute to poor indoor air quality. Compounds found in carpeting, furniture, upholstery and drapery fabric constantly emit fumes. Other sources of pollutants can include cleaning agents, paints and personal care products. The tight construction of today's homes also contributes significantly to poor IAQ. Things like weather stripping and storm doors are designed to save on energy costs. However, they also prevent proper ventilation by keeping indoor air in and outdoor air out. The result can be a buildup of contaminants within the home.

Poor IAQ can be a direct or indirect cause of several health problems. Medical groups report that as many as half of all illnesses are caused or aggravated by indoor air pollution. Pollutants within the home can cause homeowners to suffer from flu-like symptoms such as headaches, nausea and respiratory irritation. In addition, two existing health problems that can be helped by improving indoor air quality are allergies and asthma. By removing airborne dust particles, the amount of exposure the respiratory system has to them is reduced. Proper ventilation also plays an important role in improving indoor air quality, helping to reduce the concentration of pollutants inside the home.



How can I find carbon monoxide in my home?

The best method of detection is to use a carbon monoxide detector indoors. A carbon monoxide detector is a device very similar to a smoke alarm. It monitors the air for carbon monoxide and gives an alarm if a specific level is detected. Ideally, you should have at least one detector adjacent to every living area, centrally located, or on each floor in your home. Carbon monoxide detectors are very effective when used in combination with preventive maintenance. Call 518-417-2938 for additional details about purchasing a carbon monoxide detector.



How can I eliminate indoor odors?

You may have tried to cover up indoor odors by spraying air fresheners or lighting candles. Unfortunately, these tactics only mask the odors, they don't get rid of them. These remedies may in fact negatively affect indoor air quality from chemicals that cause allergic reactions or eye irritation for homeowners.

Bacteria, dust mites, animal dander, cat saliva and mold may also be roots of your home's odor problem. One method to purify the air is installing germicidal (UV) lights in your home, which helps kill odors and inhibit the growth of biological contaminants, sterilizing surfaces in the HVAC system. They also purify the air, preventing the growth of contaminants. The UV lights are installed to work with your home comfort system.

Sometimes poor ventilation contributes to unpleasant odors. Moisture condensation on walls windows and stale air are signs of poor ventilation. A qualified Roland J. Down Service Experts technician can inspect your home comfort system to determine if this is an issue that should be addressed. The technician can also inform you how to improve the ventilation system’s ability to properly circulate and ventilate indoor air.



How do I choose the right humidifier?

An excellent way to choose the correct humidifier is by having a home health report performed by Roland J. Down Service Experts. Every dwelling is different, and every family is different. So, every humidification need is also different. There are a couple factors to understand when purchasing a humidifier for your home, Roland J. Down Service Experts can help you understand and consider these issues.

Consider size. A humidifier's capacity, or the amount of moisture it can dispense in a given time, should match your particular household's needs. The capacity is measured as gallons per day of operation. One method that is used to determine the correct-sized humidifier for your home is by multiplying the total floor area in by the ceiling height. We can provide you with this information and additional information to help you figure out which type of humidifier will best suit you and your family’s comfort needs.

Consider cost. Consider not only the purchase price of the humidifier, but also operating and maintenance costs. Some products consume more energy than others, so choosing a model that is right for your home and budget is extremely important.



How do I know which indoor air quality product is right for me?

Every person and every home entails a different comfort need. The threshold of irritancy and triggers that affect people’s health and comfort combine to determine the proper solutions. High threshold levels may require simple solutions like a better air filter. Low threshold levels may require an air purification system for the reduction of triggers and irritants. With a Home Health Report Card, Roland J. Down Service Experts can help you decide which indoor air improvement products are right for you.



How healthy is my indoor air?

According to studies created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, exposure to air pollutants indoors can be 100 times higher than outdoors. Frequent dusting and vacuuming can help reduce the amount of dust and dust mites present in your home. However, not all airborne particles can be eliminated. Filtration devices can help eliminate particles that are too small to be picked up by a vacuum. Some filtration devices include UV light units, air filters, energy recovery ventilators (ERVs), heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) and electronic air cleaners. A Home Health Report Card from Roland J. Down Service Experts will help inform you which indoor air improvement devices are right for you. To receive a Home Health Report Card and personal air quality consultation Roland J. Down Service Experts at 518-417-2938.



How much water does a humidifier use?

Depending on the product you choose and the size of your home, a humidifier may use from 1.5 to 12 gallons per day when the furnace is operating. The amount of water used is enough to raise the humidity to a comfortable level, but not enough to notice a difference on your water bill.