Are you in the market for a new HVAC system in 2019? Though choosing the right heater and air conditioner for your home can seem like a daunting task, it is important that you do your research and find a system that will be able to meet your home comfort needs now and in the future. Below, we’ve put together a quick guide to choosing a new HVAC system and finding the right HVAC contractor to provide expert installation.

Choosing a New HVAC System

With so many different brands and types of HVAC systems, the task of finding the best new heating and cooling system for your home may seem a little daunting. But have no fear! We are here to help decipher the different factors that you’ll need to consider when choosing a new system.

HVAC Sizing

The sizing of your HVAC system plays an important role in how well you will be able to maintain home comfort over time. An oversized system may constantly be turning on and off, making your energy bills go through the roof. While a system that’s too small may not be able to keep you comfortable. Poorly sized HVAC systems may also experience additional wear and tear as they have to work harder to keep your space comfortable. Work with an experienced HVAC contractor to find the right sizing for your home.

Features

You’ll also want to consider which features are important to you in a home comfort system. For example, some homeowners want to have greater control over their comfort, so they might opt for zoning or a smart thermostat. While others may be interested in including HVAC accessories as part of their home comfort set up such as humidifiers or air purifiers.

Brand

Different HVAC system brands denote different levels of quality. Similarly, different brands will offer different system types and features. At Brody Pennell, we recommend quality home comfort systems from Carrier – the industry’s leading manufacturer. As a Carrier Factory Authorized Dealer, Brody Pennell ensures that all of our HVAC technicians are trained in installing and repairing these systems. Our home comfort specialists are also experienced in helping L.A. homeowners find the best systems to meet their home comfort needs.

Price

Though price shouldn’t be your only consideration when choosing a new HVAC system, we know that it does play a part in which system you choose. Price will vary based on the type of system and brand. The best way to find a system that fits within your budget is to work with an HVAC company that has a wide selection of quality systems. Remember, there is always HVAC financing available to ensure that you get the best home comfort system to meet your family’s needs.

Finding an Experienced HVAC Contractor

Finding the right heater or air conditioner for your home is only half the battle. You’ve also got to find an experienced HVAC contractor who has experience installing new HVAC systems. Proper sizing and installation is an important part of getting the most out of your new heating and cooling system. And choosing an experienced HVAC contractor is the best way to ensure proper installation.

Here are just a few things to look for when searching for the best L.A. HVAC contractor for new system installation:

Experience

How long has your HVAC contractor been in business? A long history of consistent quality customer service shows homeowners that the HVAC contractor knows their stuff. Don’t just look at how long they have been open but also what they have done over time to ensure that their HVAC contractors have the training they need to stay up-to-date with the latest in HVAC technology.

Ratings & Reviews

What better way to understand what it’s like to work with an HVAC contractor than to hear from their past customers? Look for ratings, reviews, and testimonials on the company’s website as well as on sites like Google and Yelp. This will give you an idea of what the company is like and how they treat their customers. You should also check their rating and review complaints on Better Business Bureau.

Awards & Recognitions

The awards and recognitions that an HVAC company has been given can also give you a better idea of the quality of their service. In addition, it can tell you other things about the company that you can’t find anywhere else – like how dependable, honest, and ethical they are. Take a look at what awards the company has one locally and nationally to get a better feel for their integrity as a company.

Licenses & Insurance

At the very least, your HVAC contractor needs to have the appropriate state licenses and insurance. When you work with an uninsured contractor, you run the risk of losing money or incurring property damage when the company makes a major error. Not to mention, these licenses also show a basic level of HVAC competency that’s needed for new system installations.

Get Help Finding the Right HVAC System for Your Home

As the longest standing HVAC dealer in Los Angeles, Brody Pennell Heating & Air Conditioning has been helping L.A. homeowners find and install the right heating and cooling systems for their homes since 1945. Our HVAC technicians are experienced installing every make and model of HVAC system. Not to mention, we offer a selection of high quality Carrier brand heating and cooling systems that will keep your home comfortable for a decade or more!

More than installation, our team is also here to provide quality maintenance and repair services for the life of your HVAC system. From routine seasonal maintenance to simple and complex repairs, our HVAC technicians are standing by to keep your home comfortable year round. We also offer 24/7 emergency services to ensure that you never have to go without quality home comfort.

If you want an HVAC system you can depend on with quality installation that’s done right the first time, the team at Brody Pennell is here for you. Give us a call today to speak to one of our home comfort specialists about which new HVAC system is right for your home: (310) 896-4911.

Any time your furnace stops working, you may worry that an expensive repair or even a furnace replacement is required. Some homeowners will wait to call a heating and cooling service because they do not want to pay a large repair bill. But there are times that a small issue may be causing the problem, and the corresponding fix can be affordable and quick.

If you’re wondering whether you should call for furnace repair or just wait to see if the problem persists, consider the signs and symptoms you’ve observed and how severe they are. Here are some of the top signs your furnace may need a professional repair:

1. Slow Heating Of The Home

Even if your furnace is working in top condition, it can take time from when you first switch it on to feel the room warming up. If you stand in front of one of the vents and find that little to no heated air is coming through, there may be an issue with the ductwork instead of the furnace. Ducts can become clogged over time, and block the air from coming through.  Older homes may have ductwork that has worn down or was not installed properly that allows air to escape the system.

There are also furnace based issues that can make the home heat slowly. Issues with the furnace wiring can cause the unit to stop working, even after you’ve switched it on several times. If you notice that the unit is constantly restarting throughout the day, or that it stops working after just a few minutes, this can be a sign of a problem that an HVAC professional will need to handle. Replacing the wiring is a quick fix that a qualified HVAC technician can often resolve in just one visit.

2. Bad Smells

A furnace that is working optimally shouldn’t produce any smell along with the air. If you smell burning, gas or another kind of fuel, or smoke, chances are there is an issue with the furnace.  There can be many causes for the smell, from a serious gas leak to dust caught in the unit. The only way to get to the bottom of the issue is to have a professional check the pilot light, burners and gas line to see if there is an issue with one of these key components.

3.  No Heat At All

If your HVAC unit is producing cool air, even when you set the thermostat to a high temperature, there is definitely an issue. It can be compressor, which heats the air, or the blower motor, which pumps the warm air into the ductwork. If you haven’t had seasonal HVAC maintenance done, chances are you may have missed one or more of the signs of this issue along the way.

If you suspect your furnace needs repair, call Brody Pennell Heating and Air Conditioning at (310) 896-4911. Our team can help you get your furnace back to working condition as fast as possible.

Geothermal heat pumps work similarly to the other types of heat pumps available in the market, with the main difference only coming from the source of the heat. As the name suggests, this type of system makes use of the heat coming from the earth to help control the temperature of your home.

Is your HVAC system on the fritz? Sometimes your system just needs a simple repair, and other times, it makes more sense to replace your home’s HVAC system entirely. So how do you know when it’s actually time to upgrade your system?

Below are just a few signs that it’s time to replace your HVAC system:

You’re experiencing frequent breakdowns.

Have you gotten on a first name basis with your HVAC repairman because your HVAC system seems to be constantly in need of repair? Repair costs can quickly add up, so don’t continue to pay to repair a unit that is going to keep causing you stress and unexpected expenses. If your system is breaking down often, it might be in your best interest to replace the system completely. If your system is constantly malfunctioning, it’s probably not all that energy efficient, which means a new system will help further save you money on energy costs.

Your air conditioner is not energy efficient.

Have you ever looked at the SEER rating of your home’s air conditioning unit? If it has a low SEER rating (anything under 13), then it is more likely than not costing you far more money just to operate than is necessary. Even if your system’s SEER rating is at 13-15, it may be smart to consider an upgrade. Today, federal regulations require that an A/C has a rating of at least 13, but anything over that number means that energy efficiency just increases as the SEER rating increases.

Your HVAC system is over ten years old.

A well maintained HVAC system should last between 10 to 13 years, so if your system is over 10 years old, it probably makes sense to replace it. With the numerous developments in HVAC technology over the past ten years, HVAC systems have only become increasingly more efficient. For that reason, there are a lot of benefits to installing a new HVAC system over hanging onto an older one. Even if your system is still running, you could achieve better energy efficiency, and therefore energy savings, by upgrading to a new model.

Home comfort is compromised.

Is it difficult for your HVAC system to keep your home warm during the winter and comfortably cool during the summer? If so, you could have an aging or incorrectly sized HVAC system on your hands. Whether it’s a sizing issue or simply old age, an ineffective HVAC system cannot appropriately provide you with adequate home comfort. If your system is running continuously, but your home is not comfortable, then it may be smart to consider an HVAC replacement.

You’re paying high repair costs.

If you’ve recently experienced a malfunction in your HVAC system that will require a very expensive fee to fix, then it may be smarter to just invest in a new HVAC system. Before making this call, weigh the cost of the repair against the cost of a new unit and consider the age of your system (how many more years until you’ll just have to replace it anyways). If the repair cost is super high, it may make far more sense financially to just replace it.

Need HVAC Replacement in West Hollywood?

If you live in the West Hollywood area and are considering an HVAC replacement, get in touch with the experts at Brody Pennell. Whether you have concerns about replacing your home’s HVAC system, or if you have questions about the replacement process and would like to speak to one of our expert technicians, we can help. Call us today at 310-836-0606.

If you are looking for more efficient ways to heat and cool your home, you may be interested in geothermal energy. Geothermal energy is a sustainable energy source that can help keep your home comfortable while saving money on monthly heating and cooling costs. If you would like to hear more about geothermal energy, read on for a basic guide to how this type of home energy works.

What Homeowners Need to Know About Geothermal

Are you interested in using geothermal energy in your home? Below, we’ve put together some basic information that homeowners need to know about geothermal heating and cooling:

Geothermal-infographic

Interested in learning more about geothermal heat pumps and if they might be right for your home? Give us a call today to speak with an experienced HVAC specialist: (310) 836-0606.

One of the most important systems in your newly constructed home is the HVAC system. It will keep your home’s temperature regulated and, when commissioned and installed appropriately, save energy and keep your home environmentally friendly. If you need to commission an HVAC system but aren’t sure where to begin, let Brody Pennell help.

HVAC Commission

What Is HVAC Commissioning?

Simply put, HVAC commissioning is the thorough testing of your HVAC system’s performance. Although you are paying a contractor to build and install an HVAC system, there is no guarantee it will work perfectly after installation. To ensure it does, it’s best to have the system tested before, during, and after the building process. Commissioning saves homeowners money on maintenance costs, as well as the time it would take to repair or even replace an HVAC system. Commissioning also alerts you to potential problems before they happen, such as a system that’s prone to overheating.

Do I Need An HVAC Commission?

Many homeowners are unsure whether HVAC commissioning is necessary and are leery of spending money on one. However, you should commission any mechanical system in your new home, including the HVAC system.

Commissioning will make it easier to upgrade your HVAC system when needed. For example, if you live in a naturally hot area, you may need to upgrade chillers sooner than you estimated. Boilers, pumps, and heat exchangers may undergo wear and tear during harsh weather, leading to expensive repairs. An HVAC commission will ensure that your system has all the proper equipment when it is installed and that it all works at optimum levels.

Who Will Perform My Commission?

Usually the contractor who installed your system will be the same person who commissions it. If the contractor is unwilling or unable to do this, you must find a reputable commissioning agent immediately. During a commission, the contractor or other agent will simulate different operating conditions to test how well the system works and alert you to possible problems. Commissioning ensures these problems are fixed during installation, not left until the last minute or ignored until the project is complete and the contractor has already left.

During an HVAC commission, your contractor will mount and secure your HVAC box and ensure all controls are accessible. He or she will check each part of the system, such as fan belts, motors, coils, and piping to be sure they are installed properly and do not have wear and tear that might prevent them from working.

The contractor will check to see all system parts such as unit supply fans, dampers, and valves respond on command, and that start and stop times are programmed into the HVAC system properly. If any problems occur, the contractor will isolate the issue and devote time to it until it is resolved.

Learn More About HVAC Commissioning [H2]

If you wish to learn more about HVAC commissioning or want to schedule one, please call Brody Pennell or visit us online. Our associates are well versed in commissioning and will walk you through each step of the process.

 

At Brody-Pennell Heating and Air Conditioning, we have a large selection of heat pumps. However, we find that many clients don’t understand what they are or how they work. Here’s our brief guide to heat pumps and their benefits.

Learn About Heat Pumps: 101

Households in moderate climates such as Los Angeles benefit greatly from heat pumps. Contrary to what the name suggests, these units manage heating and cooling inside a home. Pumps function similarly to a refrigerator, using electricity to move hot air out of the house in summer and into the home in winter.

Heat pumps don’t actively generate air—they relocate it. This cuts down on energy expenditures and reduces costs by as much as 75% compared to traditional heating and cooling methods. Furnaces and air conditioners are significantly less energy-efficient than pump units.

There are three major kinds of air pumps, each of which is ideal for different locations.

Choose The Pump That’s Best for You

The primary forms of heat pumps are air source, ground source, and water source. Each moves hot air in and out of the stated location (air, ground, or water) to manage your home’s temperature.

  • Air-source heat pumps have indoor and outdoor components that work together to transfer air. During the summer, fans within the inside portion of your pump pull hot air out of the home and relocate it outside. The void is then filled with cooler air. Come winter, this process is reversed to pull warm air into your house.
  • Ground-source heat pumps work similarly to air-source units. The primary difference is that warm air is pulled from (or distributed to) the soil rather than the atmosphere. A unit that works with the ground tends to be very energy-efficient because soil below the surface maintains a more regular temperature than air does. Less energy is therefore needed to cool a home. Your heating and air conditioning professional will survey the soil on your property to ensure that conditions are appropriate for this type of heat pump.
  • The final category of heat pump is water source. Heat is moved in and out of nearby water sources, providing the same efficiency as ground-source options. However, these units need access to underground water sources.

Contact Your Heating And Air Professional

Our award-winning experts at Brody-Pennell Heating and Air Conditioning can help you navigate the transition to heat pumps. We take every factor into account to select the most effective, energy-efficient, money-saving unit for your home. Our team prides itself on laying out upfront costs and long-term gains before starting any new installation. If you’re considering a heat pump or are interested in reducing energy consumption in your home, contact us; we’re here to help!

All gas- and electricity-powered furnaces use up natural resources and add to your monthly utility costs. Ideally, you want your household to rely on a well-designed unit that provides the heat you need while preserving resources and keeping your costs at a minimum. You can judge the energy usage of your current furnace, or any model you intend to buy, by checking out its efficiency rating.

What Is Furnace Efficiency?

Broadly speaking, things are efficient when they perform their intended function with as little waste as possible. In terms of furnaces, this means that highly efficient models keep your house warm during cold weather while using a relatively small of amount of fuel or electricity each month. In contrast, low-efficiency models go through a relatively large amount of fuel or electricity per month, even though they may still keep your household interior at a desirable temperature. Naturally, since an efficient furnace keeps your house warm at a lower monthly operating cost, it’s preferable to an inefficient furnace that features the same heating technology.

Measuring Efficiency

In the U.S., furnace efficiency is measured by something called annual fuel utilization efficiency, or AFUE. This measurement is defined as the amount of heat output a furnace creates for the amount of fuel or electricity it uses. In a natural gas- or propane-powered furnace with a 90 percent AFUE rating, 90 percent of all the heat produced by the combustion process enters your household’s ducting network, while the remaining 10 percent escapes through the venting system. Since electric furnaces don’t lose heat by venting combustion gases, they typically have a higher AFUE rating than gas furnaces (between 95 percent and 100 percent).

Determining the Efficiency of Older Models

Under current federal law, all new furnaces sold in America must display their AFUE rating. However, you won’t necessarily be able to gauge the rating of furnaces sold before this standard was introduced. Still, you can usually recognize low- and moderate-efficiency units through certain telltale signs. For example, any gas-powered furnace with a continuously lit pilot light will have a low efficiency rating (as low as 56 percent in some cases). The presence of an octopus-like ducting network also indicates a lack of fuel efficiency. You can recognize a moderately efficient older furnace (an AFUE rating of roughly 80 to 83 percent) by the presence of a fan system that functions as an airflow regulator.

Gas or Electric?

So, among furnaces with equal AFUE ratings, what’s the best choice: gas or electric? As a rule, it costs less to heat with natural gas or propane than it costs to heat with electricity. This means that, all other things being equal, a gas furnace with a 90 percent AFUE rating will produce lower monthly utility bills than an electric furnace with the same efficiency rating.

Make sure to follow our blog for future posts on crucial home heating and home cooling topics. If you have a more specific HVAC question or concern, contact us today to speak with one of our experienced team members.

If you’re replacing an old heating system or installing a system in a new house, you have quite a few equipment choices available. While many people choose a centralized system that uses ducting to deliver heated air throughout their homes, you may want to consider something called a ductless mini-split heat pump. In several respects, this type of unit functions differently than a traditional centralized heating solution.

How Do Heat Pumps Work in General?

Heat pumps come in both centralized and ductless forms. Both of these configurations differ in operation from a traditional furnace. When you turn on a furnace, it creates warmth by igniting a fuel source or triggering an internal heating element. In contrast, when you turn on a heat pump, it pulls warmth into your home from another source instead of producing it internally. Potential sources include the outside air, a nearby body of water and the ground. In the summertime, a heat pump can also reverse direction and pull warmth out of your home like a standard air conditioner.

Ductless Operation Vs. Centralized Operation

A centralized heat pump or furnace uses a connected ducting network to carry warmth simultaneously to rooms throughout your household. To make this approach work, you must dedicate indoor space for each duct. A ductless system is not connected to your heat source through an indoor ducting network. Instead, each unit in the system has its own mini-duct or conduit that connects to the heat source after passing through a wall or floor to the exterior of your home. This arrangement saves considerable amounts of indoor space.

Mini-Splits

HVAC specialists use the term “mini-split” to describe a system that gives you independent control over the temperature in individual zones inside your home. This zoning approach allows you to keep certain rooms warmer or cooler. It also allows you shut off the heat completely in specific areas if you prefer. Some mini-split systems only let you set up a couple of household zones. However, advanced systems let you set up a maximum of eight separately adjustable areas.

From the information covered so far, you can see that a ductless mini-split heat pump draws heat from an outdoor source, then gives you the ability to distribute that heat to individual household areas without relying on an indoor ducting network. Unless winter temperatures are very cold where you live, you may find this type of pump to be an excellent option for summertime cooling as well as heating. For more up-to-date info on your options for the best in heating and cooling technology, bookmark this blog and check back with us often.

If you own your home for an extended period of time, you will almost certainly need to replace your air conditioner or furnace sooner or later. These heating and cooling systems cost much more than the typical household appliance, and if you buy a unit that’s not well-suited to residence, you may regret your purchasing decision for as much as a decade or longer. Fortunately, you can increase your chances of buying a suitable AC or furnace by avoiding a few common pitfalls.

 

Buying an Inappropriately Sized Unit

Furnace and air conditioner manufacturers design their products to work under a certain set of conditions. Key factors here include the size of your home, as well as your home’s layout. If you buy a heating or cooling unit that’s too powerful or too weak for your needs, you can easily experience a number of serious problems, including spikes in your monthly heating or cooling costs, an inability to maintain a comfortable temperature throughout your home and premature failure of one or more components in your AC or furnace.

 

Not Verifying Your Contractor’s Reputation

Most HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) contractors are reputable businesspeople who will do their best to provide you with quality work. However, quite frankly, some contractors are incompetent or dishonest. If you don’t verify your contractor’s reputation with other homeowners in your area or (better yet) a trusted service like the Better Business Bureau, you have no way of knowing if he or she will do good work and maintain a safe working environment on your property.

 

Basing Your Choice Solely on Price

Some HVAC contractors will work for what seems like a very low price. However — as the cliché goes — you get what you pay for, and a cheap contractor may try to cut corners in important ways or simply deliver inferior work. Even if you have a limited budget, it makes sense to balance pricing considerations with the short- and long-term quality of the work you will receive.

 

Not Locking Down Your Contract

All trustworthy HVAC contractors should be happy to supply you with a contract that details the work they will perform and the price they will charge for this work. This type of detailed contract is critical to your ability to take legal action if something goes wrong or the contractor fails to complete the agreed-upon work at a reasonable price or within a reasonable timeframe.

 

Leaving Energy Efficiency Out of the Equation

A highly energy-efficient furnace or AC will likely cost you a good deal more money up front than a unit with a much lower efficiency rating. However, the energy-efficient option may actually cost you less money over time if you factor in the long-term impact on your monthly utility bills.

 

Consulting a Single Contractor

Prices among trustworthy HVAC specialists can vary considerably. If you only talk to a single contractor, you could easily miss out on significant savings in the cost of your unit or your installation fees.

Make sure to follow this blog for ongoing advice on best practices for household heating and cooling.