Archive for the ‘Heat Pumps’ Category

Is a Ductless Mini-Split System Right for Your Home?

Monday, December 17th, 2018

If you are considering a new heating system for your home, it is important to consult with a professional HVAC technician before making any final decisions. We understand that selecting the right system can be a daunting task—there are a lot of great options to choose from, and each has their benefits and drawbacks depending on your own individual circumstances. But don’t fret! Bayonet Plumbing, Heating, & Air Conditioning can help you select the perfect system for your needs!

For many homeowners, ductless splits, also known as mini-split systems, are becoming a preferred option. These systems can be great for keeping your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Many Florida homeowners opt for this system for the convenience and year-round comfort! Below, we have provided some of the benefits that ductless systems have to offer. But remember, before you make any decisions be sure to contact us to schedule ductless services in Tampa, FL.

What is a Ductless Mini-Split System?

A ductless system is a heat pump that does not rely on ducts. Instead, it utilizes air handlers installed throughout the house rather than a centralized blower or coil unit. Ductless systems are able to act as both heaters and air conditioners, thus making them a popular and convenient choice. The system is made up of an outdoor condenser unit and one or more indoor units that contain the air handler and blowers that help to circulate air. Refrigerant lines are all that connect the outdoor unit to the indoor units, making installation convenient and affordable.

Benefits of a Ductless System

They’re Versatile

As mentioned above, a ductless system provides both heating and cooling without the need for ducts. If you live in an older home that does not have space for ductwork or doesn’t have it installed, a ductless system can be a great alternative.

Installation is Convenient

Installing ductwork can be a difficult and expensive process depending on the layout of your home.  Installing a ductless system is less invasive and can be up and running in as little as one day.

They’re Cost Effective

Switching to a ductless system can save you and your family a lot of money. Ductless systems operate on less power than other systems simply due to the fact they recycle heated air rather than generating it from nothing. In addition, homeowners can control the temperature of the air going into each room, thus increasing efficiency. Mini-split systems allow homeowners to create “zones” in their homes, meaning they don’t have to heat or cool the rooms that aren’t being used.

They’re Energy Efficient

Since mini-splits have no ducts, they avoid the energy losses associated with the ductwork of forced-air systems. Duct losses can account for more than 30% of energy use. In addition, a ductless system is considered to be a more efficient choice than a standard window or portable unit.

Our friendly technicians at Bayonet can help you decide if a ductless split, or mini-split, system is right for your home. We offer installation, repair, and maintenance services to ensure that your new system runs efficiently and effectively for years to come!

Contact Bayonet Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning today!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Does My Heat Pump Have a Refrigerant Leak?

Monday, February 12th, 2018

temperature-just-rightBecause our winter weather is mild, to say the least, many homeowners in our area feel that a designated heating system is a bit of overkill. Now, those homeowners also realize that they still need dependable heaters to make it through the occasional cold night comfortably. They just may be hesitant to invest in a system that is solely used for heating their homes. That is why the heat pump is such an incredibly popular type of system in our area.

The heat pump, as you may know, is an HVAC system that allows homeowners to both heat and cool their homes throughout the year. That means that you can use just one system in order to keep comfortable all year long. We’ll get further into the specifics of how this works in the post below. Here’s a sneak preview, though—it’s all thanks to the refrigerant cycle. That is why a refrigerant leak in your heat pump in Brooksville, FL is such a problem.

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How Do Heat Pumps Heat and Cool?

Monday, January 1st, 2018

hot-and-cold-homesAs mild as our winter weather may be here in Florida, the fact remains that we still need reliable heating systems installed in our homes if we hope to make it through the winter season comfortably. It does get chilly enough around here to necessitate the use of our heaters, even if it doesn’t do so all that frequently. In fact, this is exactly what makes the heat pump such a great option for homeowners in our area.

If you are ready to install an HVAC system in a new property,  or if you want to replace an existing system in your home, then it is definitely worth your while to look into using a heat pump in Tampa, FL. Heat pumps are unique and their benefits are considerable. Just remember that even the best heating and cooling systems are not really going to impress if you don’t schedule your HVAC services with qualified professionals. 

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When You Call for AC Repair In Tampa: Choose Wisely!

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Air conditioners break and need repair in Tampa and across Florida; it is a fact of life. Today AC isn’t a luxury—it is a necessity. But when an AC or Heat Pump breaks, who do you call? Hundreds of AC companies are licensed in Florida, but how do you choose? We have some tips for the savvy consumer!

If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. AC Repair companies in Tampa often run advertisements that say “FREE” tune up or offer a low cost tune up. If you are searching for a great deal on a cheap repair, you should know that the motive of many of these companies is to find something wrong with your AC unit so they can write up a huge repair bill or sell you a new system.

Check References! Before you call an AC company to make a repair, check their reputation. Thanks to the Better Business Bureau and Google, checking in on customer experiences is easier than ever. Look for companies with many reviews and mostly favorable ones. In the AC repair industry, especially in Tampa, there will always be people who are hard to please. Look for companies who have a mixture of good and bad reviews but have responded to the bad ones in a personal and timely fashion. If every review is a glowing one, they might be fabricated to make the company look better than they are.

-Are they licensed and adequately insured?  Take a moment and look at the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website and make sure that the company is licensed to do work. Using an unlicensed contractor is a dangerous game. Your homeowner’s policy could get hit with the claim if an unlicensed contractor is injured on your property! Just to repair an AC unit in Tampa, a state license is required! Bayonet’s AC license number is CAC058062 and the plumbing license number is CFC042998. Both licenses are held by the company’s owners. Make sure the license holder isn’t someone the company has hired to “rent” the license, leaving virtually no responsibility on the owners or technicians, as it isn’t their State license on the line if a complaint is filed.

Repair or Replace? Many AC companies want to push the AC replacement over the AC repair. If your system is using R410a refrigerant and is under ten years old, a company pushing to replace your system instead of suggesting an AC repair should warrant warning bells! R22, commonly known as Freon™, is being phased out across the country. Additionally, the Department of Energy has mandated that all AC systems sold in the US must meet a minimum seasonal energy efficiency rating (SEER) of 13. So if your AC system is in need of a repair in Tampa or anywhere in Florida, use this as qualifying criteria: 1.Is my AC system older than 10 years? 2. Does it use R22 refrigerant? 3. Was it less than 13 seer when I bought it? If you can answer “yes” to two or more of these questions, you might be a candidate for a new system; but if you can answer “no,” you are a likely candidate for an AC repair instead.

-Who’s going to complete the AC Repair? The technician arrives at your home. Hopefully, he or she is driving a company vehicle with a logo and hopefully he or she is wearing a uniform. But who is it really? Use a company like Bayonet Plumbing and AC which is Ask the Seal Certified. What’s that mean? It means that every employee who enters your home or deals with sensitive information-like your credit card number-has been background checked by a third-party company.  AC repair is one of the most popular trades taught in penitentiaries. Where did you AC repair technician get his experience?

The bottom line is simple, Tampa: Don’t Sweat, Just Call Bayonet for AC repair you can trust.

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Indoor Air Quality: Why Testing Targets the Best Solutions

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

We’ve all read it before: indoor air can be more polluted than outdoor air. There are three principles to live by when it comes to indoor air quality: remove the source of the problem, filter out what is in the air, and dilute the contaminants with fresh, clean air. It’s not really rocket science. However, when you consider that our homes are built tighter than ever to be as energy smart as possible, the dilution part of the equation becomes a challenge. We’re just not introducing fresh air as much as we should.

Family members who have allergies, asthma, COPD, or compromised immune systems require indoor air quality that is as close to perfect as possible. There are myriad products and techonologies today to get the air in your home squeaky clean. Here’s the hard part: what is right for your home? What do you need? What will you have to spend to achieve perfect air for your family?

Don’t Sweat: Call Bayonet

We are one of the few companies who can actually TEST your indoor air and THEN propose a solution that addresses the problems that are in your air ! So many companies will just sell you the highest price item in their arsenal when you bring up the indoor air quality topic. But great indoor air is much more than a UV Bulb or Filter.

VOCs: the unknown culprit

VOCs are volatile organic compounds that are present in the air and can be harmful to lungs. Lennox’ s PureAir filter can cleanse the air thanks to the photocatalytic oxidation that the filter boasts. It’s a leader in the industry and a great innovation that will completely rid your home of all airborne odors and smells.

Particulant Problems

Many of us know that particulants are always present. These are the  mold spores, tiny particles, and pollen that float through the air stream. If you don’t have a filter doing the work for you, your body will have no choice but filter them out for you. That’s where allergies come in. Some people’s bodies react to these tiny particles as if they require combat. Instead of saying: “oh, that’s a harmless thing” some bodies say “yikes, attack!” and Boom! You have an allergic reaction. Adequate filtration removes these particles from your home’s air so your body won’t have to be a filter.

It’s the Humidity!

The third part of indoor air solutions that many companies never address is the humidity level. In Florida, we have major humidity swings. For most of the summer months, it is quite high. According to the American Lung Association, the ideal humidity level for human life is 55 percent. Why? Easy: that humidity level is not condusive to the development of molds, dust mites can not thrive or procreate, and irritating airborne gases don’t seem to aggravate us so easily. For many homeowners, the AC system isn’t sized properly or has inadequate returns, leading to humidity levels that range high most of the time. Thanks to innovations in air conditioning technology, we have many ways to cure the humidity problem from dual-speed systems to stand alone dehumidifcation systems (that run on only 6 amps of power) that can hit your target humidity all year long.

So What’s Wrong with YOUR Air?

Well, from this side of the computer, I don’t know. And a techinican standing in your living room or even one who has looked at your system truly doesn’t know either. BUT we can test it! Thanks to our system, we can install a device that will measure your home’s particulant levels, VOC levels, humidity, temperature and even carbon monoxide levels. It downloads the data to a computer in Oregon which then provides us with a report. Then, we can offer you a truly customized solution to give you the best indoor air quality you can get in your home, without breaking the bank.

Spend smart, breathe great air, and don’t fret: CALL BAYONET.

Mention this blog and get the smart IAQ test for $50…and we will take the amount of the testing off  of your IAQ solution! Through 9/1/2012.

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Bayonet is Ask The Seal Certified!

Thursday, March 15th, 2012

When you invite strangers into your home for the first time, how do you know you can trust them in your sanctuary, around your children, and around what’s nearest and dearest to your heart. Unless you have a long-standing relationship with the company, you don’t really know who they’re sending to your home. In fact, they might not even really know they’re employees! There is a way to have a little peace of mind. It’s free and called AskTheSeal.com

At Bayonet, we’re very proud to distinguish our company in this manner. Here is a little about Ask the Seal, straight from their website:

Why Ask The Seal?

  • Many companies who claim to be licensed, insured and bonded are not.
  • Many companies who claim to perform criminal background checks on their employees do not.
  • If you hire an unlicensed company and an employee hurts themselves on your property or your property is damaged, your insurance company may deny the claim leaving you holding the bag.
  • You can be fined up to $5,000 for hiring an unlicensed contractor whether you knew it or not.
  • Many criminals use their employment to find their next victim.
  • Every day companies large and small introduce dangerous felons into unsuspecting consumers lives.
  • Many consumers think they are safe if someone is home with them when the service person is there. In fact, many crimes are committed up to six months after the service call.

How is the Seal Different?

  • Ask the Seal.com is free to consumers.
  • Ask the Seal.com does not require you to enter any personal information.
  • Ask the Seal.com performs criminal and sex offender checks on not just the owner but also the employees who interact with your family.
  • Ask the Seal.com actually performs the background checks rather than just taking someone’s word for it.
  • Companies with the Seal of Approval can email you an employee photo and proof of background check(SEAL-MAIL) so you know who you are opening your door for.
  • Employees are issued photo IDs confirming their background check

How does the Seal of Approval help protect me?

So now, you don’t just have our promise, you have the Seal’s approval. So don’t sweat, don’t fret, call Bayonet…and you’ll have no regrets!

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Choosing a new air conditioner….

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Take the Guesswork Out of Choosing an Air Conditioner

When you need to purchase a new air conditioner the choices can be overwhelming, but when armed with basic information, you can make the choice that best fits your needs and your budget. One of the first things you should do is schedule a consultation with a professional so that you have expert guidance.

Things you need to consider include:

  • What size do I need? This can be tricky; too small and your home won’t be cool enough, too large and you will be paying too much as well as losing efficiency. This is where your consultation with us comes in— we’ll help you find the optimal size for your needs.
  • How efficient should it be? An air conditioner’s initial cost rises proportionately with its efficiency, but a high-efficiency air conditioner will most likely save you money in the long run. Efficiency will be discussed in more detail below
  • Is the company going to be around to service it? Do I trust them implicitly to stand behind their work? If you don’t, your family’s comfort is at stake!

An air conditioner’s efficiency rating lets you know how much of the energy it uses is turned into cool air for your home.  The higher, the better.

Air conditioners have varying levels of efficiency; look for the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating to compare models.  Current laws set the minimum SEER of new air conditioners at 13 or higher. High-efficiency unitshave a SEER of between 14 and 20.

As stated above, the cost of a new air conditioner will rise proportionately with its efficiency, but don’t let this turn you away from high-efficiency models. Remember an air conditioner will last 10 years or more; if that unit is 20% more efficient than a cheaper model, the cost difference will be negated in the long term, and the more expensive model canactually save you money.

An air conditioner is a fairly expensive long-term commitment to your home’s comfort.  Make the best decision you can based on efficiency, size, and cost; call us to help. The single biggest factor that should influence your decision isn’t the unit or brand but the company you choose to install the unit. Do you trust their people? Are they sufficiently insured? Are their installation crews employees or subcontractors? Did they advise you of the permit process? Make sure you see the permit before allowing any work to begin or you could be fined!

Consumerreports.org

Furnacecompare.com

Fpl.com

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What happened to heating season??

Sunday, February 26th, 2012

We Floridians have enjoyed our non-winter thoroughly this year! It has been true “Chamber of Commerce” weather. We haven’t experienced the few weeks of chilly weather we usually get, and the 80s haven’t been uncommon over the holidays and throughout the typically chillier months.

What does all of that mean to your AC unit? Well, the heating features likely didn’t get used much this winter! So the run time on those parts is down some from normal, but the air conditioning parts might need a little love. Air conditioners are like cars: they need regular maintenance to keep running efficiently. So if you haven’t had your system fully maintained recently, you might want to give it some serious thought, before it decides to throw in the towel on the hottest day of the year.

Be careful: if you try to find the least expensive price, you might not get a thorough maintenance, just an “inspection” during which the company might tell you that you need a maintenance or parts replaced at an additional fee. Consider instead one of our pre-planned maintenance agreements. We call them MVPs because contracting for one entitles the homeowner to many additional benefits that they wouldn’t have with simply a standard maintenance.

During our maintenance visits, we inspect all the parts that can break and test the ones we can test to ensure you that you’re given an opportunity to repair the ones that are near failure before they fail and cause you a loss of comfort. We also thoroughly clean your outdoor AND indoor coil (in place) to make sure dirt and other debris aren’t robbing you of efficiency, increasing your unit’s run time, and increasing your power bill. Just a tiny layer of dirt on the coil increases your power bill, according to an LSU study.

So, don’t keep neglecting your poor, overworked AC unit. Find out about our unique MVP agreements today or schedule a maintenance.

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Spring Cleaning? Don’t forget the AC unit…

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

The cold snap is over and Easter’s not far away. For many, that is a signal to let the spring cleaning begin! Did you know that as little as 0.042 inches of dirt accumulated on condensing unit coil and reduce your system’s efficiency by 21 percent! It’s a fact, proven by an LSU study.

When you’re thinking about cleaning, think about your AC unit. If you haven’t had it cleaned recently, call 877-BAYONET and let one of our technicians give it the spring cleaning it deserves so it doesn’t run longer than it has to when it beats the summer heat and keeps your home and family cool.

Be careful when calling for a tune up. Some companies advertise a very low cost “inspection” but they don’t actually “do” anything; they simply inspect. That’s not going to help. On the promotions page of our website, we’re running a $57 tune up special, and it’s a great value. We clean the outdoor coil and the indoor (in place, removing the coil is an extra charge) among the over twenty other tasks performed while we’re there.

Reduce your summer cooling bills before they start! Kick off your spring cleaning with a Bayonet tune up. Don’t Forget to Call Bayonet!

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What’s the buzz on two-speed systems?

Monday, January 16th, 2012

They’re among the latest and greatest in heat pump technology, and they’re super efficient. The only higher rated systems are geothermal, rotary compressor, and solar systems. Many Lennox two-speed systems are solar ready.

So how do two-speed systems work? It’s a matter of a the compressor really. Two-speed systems typically have a two-stage or true-variable compressor in the outdoor unit. They’re best paired with a variable speed air handler and are great in zoned applications.

When the thermostat calls for cooling or heating and is within three degrees of the set point, the compressor ramps on in low speed. So a five-ton compressor acts like a 2.5 ton, drawing less amps and using less power. It will cool or heat the area more slowly but the byproduct of that is greater humidity control and more efficient operation. The only time the compressor is at full speed is during very high demand times, such as if the unit was shut off or if there is a larger number of people than normal in the room.

Typically, you can expect to see two-speed systems achieving 16 SEER and higher efficiency ratings. Many manufacturers add communicating features, fancy thermostats, and much of their own terminology to these two-speed systems. They’re a step above standard and typically come with a 10-year parts warranty directly from the manufacturer. If yours does not, make sure you double check this fact our and do your due diligence when selecting a contractor.

Two-speed systems are sophisticated and required adequate airflow for proper operation. If the static pressure in your duct system is too high or you don’t have multiple returns in your home, you may need to augment your duct system for proper system function.

When getting your home sized for a potential installation of a two-speed system, it is imperative that the contractor run a heat load of your home. Most two-speed systems come in whole sizes only. If you have a 3.5-ton unit right now, you will have to go up to a four-ton or down to a three-ton unit. How do you know which is best? For us, the best answer lies in education. You have to make an educated decision based on the btus your home requires to heat and cool it. This can only be determined by a trained professional performing a heat load calculation. It’s a free service we extend on all of our estimates, so don’t fret call Bayonet and we will help you. If you’re not local to the Tampa area, make sure you request that the contractor perform one during the estimate and confirm prior to making the appointment what the fees are–if any–for this service. Every system has a maximum btu output and your home may have had alterations to it over time, changing the required btus for the home as well. For example, many homeowners tint their windows, add insulation, install patios and upgrade the windows to double pane, low-e windows, which all have an effect on the btus required to heat and cool your home.

When selecting an AC unit, bigger isn’t always better! Don’t just assume that you want to go up in size, as super sizing can lead to super problems! Short cycling can increase the humidity levels in your home and mke if feel like a dank cave instead of a comfortable abode. If you choose to go bigger, know that your duct system will almost always need alterations too. Be very cautious of the contractor you’re using if they tell you otherwise. Most homes built before 2007 are running with undersized returns to begin with, so if you’re installing a larger system, count on duct improvements as well.

Besides bringing about a more comfortable home climate, two-speed systems are often much quieter than their single-speed counterparts. Most of that quietness is due to the low-speed operation and improved insulation and sound deadeners inside the cabinet. Inquire as to available rebates and incentives when inquiring as well, as these systems frequently have some immediate savings you can count on–even from your power company!

As always, don’t sweat, call Bayonet if you have further questions. From our homepage, you can always click the “Ask An Expert” graphic and one of our resident experts in their field will answer your question in 24 hours—or less!

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