12 Reasons to Consider AC Duct Replacement

Even if you’re proactive with HVAC maintenance, ductwork may be the last thing you think about. That’s not how it should be; air ducts have a major impact on system performance and efficiency. While AC duct maintenance, such as duct cleaning, can improve these (and indoor air quality), there are many reasons to consider AC duct replacement. It’s not the cheapest home improvement project or the most fun, but it can resolve many issues.

The reasons you should consult with an HVAC contractor regarding duct replacement include:

1. Old Ductwork

Properly installed and cared-for air ducts should last 10 to 15 years. Over time, the seals, joints, and seams in your ductwork can deteriorate, reducing HVAC system performance and increasing energy usage. Some duct systems start to deteriorate sooner. The only way to address age-related issues is to invest in AC duct replacement

2. Indoor Air Quality Concerns

If there are gaps and holes in ducts, dust, allergens, mold, and other contaminants can fill the air you breathe. The effects can include increased allergies and asthma symptoms when you’re at home. Changing the air filter can provide relief; if it doesn’t, consider replacing ductwork to improve your indoor air quality.

3. High Energy Bills

If your energy bills are rising, and you haven’t used your HVAC system more (or have cut back to conserve and save), the reason may be in the air ducts. Leaky ducts let conditioned air escape. Or, ducts may be so dirty air cannot flow properly. Therefore, your AC will work harder to cool your home. A contractor can install new well-sealed ducts, so you save energy.

4. Poor Airflow

Reduced airflow can strain your HVAC system and prevent it from working effectively. This may be due to duct blockages or large air leaks. When air is not circulating in your home correctly or feels stale, it may be time to consider replacing ductwork.

5. Temperature Variations

Are some rooms too hot and others too cold? Leaks, gaps, and disconnections in ductwork can lead to temperature imbalances that never seem to go away. If ducts are in poor shape, they can prevent conditioned air from reaching parts of your home. By replacing air ducts, you can restore the temperature balance.

6. Noisy HVAC System

Air conditioning systems should perform quietly and air shouldn’t make noise as it travels through air ducts. Rattling, vibration noises, and other unusual sounds can mean your ductwork is clogged or damaged. Consult with a professional about repairing or replacing the system.

7. Damaged Ducts

In areas where your ductwork is accessible, look for signs of damage. Call a professional if you see dents, punctures, collapsed ducts, kinked lines, and other signs the system needs to be repaired or replaced. Holes in your ducts mean they’re not distributing air properly and are likely letting in warm air and pollutants.

8. Mold

Mold is a sign of widespread moisture problems and potential damage to your ductwork. Once mold starts growing, it can spread throughout the system and release spores into the air. These can trigger allergies and serious health issues. Professional duct cleaning is often not enough to address the problem.

9. Odors

Foul odors can be a sign of mold in the duct system. Also, holes in ducts can allow smells in from outside or even other parts of your home. If your living space has smoky, chemical, cooking, bathroom, and other smells, the ductwork should be the first place to look.

10. Home Renovation or Remodel

If you’re renovating or remodeling your home, it’s a good time to replace your air ducts. Changes to the floor plan and layout may require moving or reconfiguring them. Plus, including  AC duct replacement with your renovation avoids having to go through another disruptive project later.

11. Pests

Holes in air ducts are easy entryways for bugs and rodents. Pests can infest your home through ductwork and cause blockages in air ducts and HVAC units. They can also bring bacteria and disease-causing pathogens with them. The problem can often be solved with AC duct maintenance, but seriously damaged ductwork must be replaced.

12. Poor Design and Installation

Ductwork can be designed and installed in many ways. If it’s not configured and installed the way it should be for your home, your AC system won’t work efficiently. Replacing the duct system is the only way to eliminate hot and cold spots, efficiency problems, and indoor air quality issues related to poorly installed ducts.

Contact Trio Heating & Air for AC Duct Maintenance or Replacement

Our experienced HVAC professionals know how to maintain and replace ductwork. Homeowners in San Jose and surrounding areas rely on us for high-quality duct cleaning, sealing, and repair. We can also determine the best time to consider AC duct replacement. To schedule a consultation, book service online or call (415) 223-5615 today.

When Should I Schedule Boiler Repair Near Me?

Knowing when to schedule heating repairs near you in San Jose can avoid a lot of stress. Minor boiler problems can escalate quickly into emergencies. But don’t wait until the last minute to call for help. Recognizing the signs your boiler needs to be serviced can avoid a complete failure, more costly repairs, or early replacement.

A boiler-based heating system works at high temperatures. There are also high pressures and flammable gases to contend with. Boiler repair is not a DIY job. You’ll need a professional if there are signs of a problem, such as:

Strange Noises

Boilers are generally quiet. If your boiler starts to make noises it didn’t before, there’s likely a problem. For example, a worn pump or fan can cause whirring, clunking, or banging sounds. Low water pressure can cause whistling or gurgling sounds, which can also mean the unit is kettling (minerals or debris trapped in the heat exchanger are causing disturbances). Rumbling sounds are also a cause for concern. 

Water Leak

Water constantly passes through the main boiler unit and the tubing that supplies heat/water throughout your home. A faulty valve or pump, broken seal, corrosion, or poor installation can cause a boiler leak. Oftentimes, the solution is simple and inexpensive. Other causes of leaks require major repairs. If the integrity of your boiler has been compromised, it must be replaced.

Unusual Odors

Your boiler should not emit any odors. If it’s releasing a smell similar to rotten eggs, bacteria may be growing in the unit. This is not an immediate danger. However, if you suspect the odor is due to a natural gas or propane leak, evacuate your home and call for help.

Loss of Pressure

If the pressure in your boiler suddenly drops, it may not be able to heat water. The cause can be a water leak, broken pressure relief valve, or bleeding radiator. Any of these issues must be addressed by a trained technician who provides heating repair near you.

The Pilot Light Isn’t Working Properly

Contact a heating repair professional if the pilot light keeps going out or fluctuates in intensity. If it turns yellow, there may be a carbon monoxide leak. Poor airflow, a gas supply issue, or a faulty thermocouple can affect the pilot light and cause other problems and safety issues if not addressed quickly. 

Lots of Condensation

Boilers normally produce some condensation. However, excessive condensation and dampness can mean there’s a problem with the heat exchanger or the boiler was improperly installed. Condensation is more subtle than a boiler leak, but it should not be ignored.

High Heating Bills

A sudden spike in your heating bill is more likely due to a boiler or other problem than an abrupt utility rate increase. There’s a chance your boiler needs to be repaired or replaced. Call a professional if your energy costs increase without any change in usage. There may be repair options, or installing a new, high-efficiency boiler can help you save in the long run.

The Boiler Shuts Off Randomly

Your boiler should not suddenly turn off in the middle of the night. A leak, malfunctioning pump, faulty thermostat, and various other issues can cause the unit to shut off. Calling for heating repair near you is the only option to find out why your boiler won’t stay on.

The Radiators Aren’t Getting Warm

Whether one or more radiators in your home aren’t getting warm, mineral deposits, a circulation pump problem, or another issue may be to blame. A skilled technician can determine what is preventing the normal flow of hot water to the radiator(s). They may have to clean out sludge buildup or perform a chemical flushing or full system bleed.

A Lack of Heat or Hot Water

Call a boiler repair professional if your boiler is running and you have no heat or hot water. A boiler is designed to produce heat, so this indicates a serious problem. If there’s no hot water, part of the system has probably broken or malfunctioned. Whether the water is too cold or too hot can indicate a circulation problem. But never rule out an issue with combustion or heating elements. The function and safety of your home are at risk, so call for help.

Contact Trio Heating & Air

We provide reliable heating repair services in the San Jose area. No matter the size of the problem, our skilled professionals can quickly diagnose and repair your boiler. Our team responds quickly and promptly arrives at your home. You can expect five-star service and a stress-free experience when you need boiler repair or if you have a furnace or heat pump that must be fixed. For transparent pricing and fully guaranteed heating repair near you, book online or call (415) 223-1647.

Do I Need AC Maintenance During the Winter?

When it’s winter in San Jose, you probably don’t think about air conditioner maintenance. However, it’s a great time to schedule AC maintenance near you. We’ll explain why you should consider calling your local HVAC contractor for AC service and why they’d probably be happy to help.

If you listen to many HVAC professionals, you’ll hear a lot about the perks of scheduling spring AC maintenance. A spring tune-up ensures your air conditioning system is ready for peak demand during the summer. It also reduces the risk of cooling issues, breakdowns, and an emergency call to an HVAC company. But why wait until the spring? There’s no harm in getting annual maintenance over with in winter.

Here are some of the benefits of booking AC maintenance near San Jose now:

AC Contractors Have More Flexible Availability

The closer you wait until summer, the busier the company will be. Most people will schedule AC maintenance around the same time, so your options for an appointment date will be limited. If you request maintenance when there are fewer requests, the contractor may be able to send a technician at a more convenient time. This means they can work around your schedule, so there’s less stress involved in getting your AC tuned up.

It Can Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

Scheduling AC maintenance in the winter means you can breathe easier earlier in the season. Even while not in use, the unit may accumulate dust and dirt. These will start circulating as soon as you turn the air conditioner on. 

Whether you’ve changed the air filter recently or not, a technician can find ways to improve indoor air quality and help your AC system run more smoothly. For example, they can talk about and give you time to consider duct cleaning. Or, they can install an air scrubber or whole-house purification system.

You Have Time to Plan AC Replacement

If you have an older AC unit, servicing it long before the cooling season lets a contractor weigh whether it’s worth keeping. Replacing an AC requires many considerations. Purchasing a new one in a rush when the old one fails can result in making poor decisions. To ensure you pick an AC that’s the right type, size, and efficiency for your home (and get it installed in time), you want to be proactive. The HVAC company can also help you weigh alternative options like a heat pump.

Maximize Your Savings on Energy Usage

Having your AC system cleaned, inspected, tuned up, and repaired (if necessary) now means it will run at peak efficiency starting the first day. Therefore, you can maximize your energy savings. Maintenance includes tightening loose parts and connections, lubricating moving parts, and clearing the space around the condenser. A technician can also provide duct cleaning and sealing and check for and address any electrical issues. 

On the other hand, waiting until halfway through summer for a tune-up can mean paying higher energy bills instead of saving money toward a vacation (or at least a good meal at a restaurant). 

Heat Pumps Require Biannual Maintenance

A heat pump provides heating and cooling, so it runs year-round. Therefore, the system requires maintenance in the spring and fall. But there’s no rule saying you can’t get it over with in winter. It can help lower your energy bills starting right away. 

And, if a technician finds any issues, they can fix them so your heat pump won’t break down anytime soon, nor will you be in for a surprise when you switch to cooling mode and realize the reversing valve isn’t working. A contractor can find a stuck or faulty valve and fix or replace it before you need cool air.

Should My AC Be Covered All Winter?

You don’t need to cover your AC for the winter. It’s better not to. The metal casing is not affected by snow or rain. Downsides to covering an AC, as some experts recommend, include moisture retention, mold, and rust. Small animals can also find it easier to nest inside the unit if it’s covered.

If you want to protect your AC with a cover, do so in the fall when leaves, twigs, and debris are more likely to fall on it and get inside. During maintenance, these will be cleared anyway, so there’s no reason to cover the unit for long. If you do, use an air conditioner cover and cover only the top.

Schedule AC Maintenance Near You with Trio Heating & Air

Homeowners in the San Jose area can depend on Trio Heating & Air for professional AC maintenance. Our team provides routine service to improve energy efficiency, increase the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and ensure you are comfortable and benefit from good indoor air quality. We make sure your air conditioning system runs flawlessly when you need it the most. To schedule an AC maintenance appointment before the cooling season, book an appointment online or call (415) 234-4728.

 

How Much Does Furnace Replacement Cost?

It’s no secret that furnace replacement can be costly. The prices of parts and equipment continue to rise and there are many other expenses to consider. But knowing what’s involved can help you plan for your next upgrade. As a leading heating contractor in the San Jose area, we like to share our market knowledge. Hence, you can be more informed and empowered to make decisions as you compare different products or quotes.

The Latest Furnace Replacement Costs

The average cost to replace a furnace (in 2024 dollars) is $4,700. But this is just average; more typically, the price can range from $2,800 to $6,800.1 However, an average price doesn’t tell you much about factors that can determine the ultimate cost of a project. One of the most significant of these is the type of furnace you install. Here are some examples:

  • Natural Gas Furnace ($2,800 to $9,5001): High-efficiency models can cost even more. However, natural gas furnaces tend to lower your utility bills over time. They also produce heat that feels warmer compared to other types of furnaces.
  • Oil Furnace ($4,500 to $8,0001): Oil furnaces tend to last longer than gas furnaces and won’t explode or leak carbon monoxide if they malfunction. Nonetheless, they still require regular maintenance, including filter changes. If you live in an area with harsh winters and don’t mind the high cost of oil, an oil furnace can be effective.
  • Electric Furnace ($1,800 to $7,3001): An electric furnace warms the air via heat coils rather than combustion. It tends to use a lot of electricity. Therefore, electric units aren’t often found in homes in harsh climates; they’re more frequently seen in regions with mild winters.

How Do I Know What My Furnace Replacement Will Cost?

An appliance’s price tag doesn’t determine the full furnace replacement cost. Although the furnace price is a big part of the expense, you must factor in the unit’s size. It’s measured in British Thermal Units (BTUs); a BTU is a unit of measurement that helps determine how much energy a furnace uses.

To determine how many BTUs your furnace should have, multiply the square footage of your home by 40. For a 2,000-square-foot home, this means you need an 80,000 BTU furnace (or higher if winters where you live tend to be very cold).1 You may also need to increase the BTU count if your home is drafty or has high ceilings.

On average, an 80,000 BTU furnace costs about $4,000. A 100,000 BTU furnace, suited for a 2,500-square-foot home, averages $5,000, while a 120,000 BTU furnace (best for a 3,000-square-foot home), is about $6,000.1

Other Furnace Replacement Cost Factors

A furnace's size isn’t the only thing that affects the replacement cost. Other variables to consider are:

Efficiency

A furnace’s efficiency affects how much you save over time. While high-efficiency models are more expensive to install, they can lower your energy bill so you spend less each month. Some of the most efficient and advanced models can cost $10,000 or more, but if you have a furnace that’s 25% more efficient than your old one, multiply that percentage by your current monthly heating bill to see what you can save.

Installation vs. Replacement

The scope of the project impacts costs. For example, if you’re installing the same type of furnace, you probably have everything needed to set it up. However, if you’re converting from one type of furnace to another, or moving the unit’s location, the cost of replacement will increase because of additional work, such as installing a gas line, upgrading your electrical panel, or adding ducts (depending on the furnace and your home’s requirements).

Labor

An HVAC contractor typically charges between $75 and $150 per hour for labor.1 When you consider that replacing a furnace can take four to eight hours, labor can take up a significant percentage of your bill.

What Else Do I Need to Consider?

There’s still more to think about when you calculate the cost of furnace replacement. Some other variables that are in play include:

  • Brand: Some manufacturers charge less for similar types of furnaces than others. A higher-priced furnace may be better constructed and have more features. The lowest prices often reflect lower-quality equipment and materials.
  • Permits: The price of the permit should be included in your quote, but always ask the contractor. Depending on where you live, a permit and the required inspection can cost from $400 to $1,500.2
  • Removing Your Old Furnace: Disposing of a furnace yourself can be difficult and time-consuming. Most furnace installers can handle this for you, but depending on various factors, this can cost up to several hundred dollars.
  • Warranty: Check whether the manufacturer includes a warranty with the furnace or the warranty costs extra. Also, read the fine details of your home warranty to see if it covers furnaces. If not, find out whether a heating unit can be added to the plan.
  • Tax Credits: Installing a high-quality, high-efficiency furnace costs more upfront, but you may save later if it’s eligible for a tax credit. If this is the case, you can save a few hundred dollars on your taxes. Consult with a furnace replacement professional and an accountant for information on the latest tax laws.

Contact Trio Heating and Air for a Furnace Replacement Quote

We install the highest-quality heating products for customers in San Jose, CA. Familiar with all makes and models, we help make informed decisions and offer transparent pricing so costs are less of a concern. Our highly-trained professionals aim to make the furnace replacement process as easy as possible. If your system needs frequent repairs, is reaching the end of its lifespan, or temperatures at home are inconsistent, contact us today to speak with our heating installation and replacement specialists.

Source:

  1. https://www.forbes.com/home-improvement/hvac/new-furnace-cost/ 
  2. https://www.angi.com/articles/how-much-does-it-cost-install-new-furnace.htm