If you've lived through at least one New Mexico summer, you know how essential it is to keep your home cool. Climate control is important, but so is keeping down the energy bill. One of our most requested services revolves around an easy-to-install, easy-to-maintain alternative to air conditioning: swamp coolers. Read on to learn how to get the most out of your swamp cooler so that you can stay cool all summer long. How Does a Swamp Cooler Work? A swamp cooler--also called an evaporative cooler--passes hot air over cooling pads and blows out the resulting cool air. Evaporative cooling utilizes a fan to pull outside air into the appliance. The porous sides stay damp by drawing water from a pan at the bottom of the cooler. It's best to avoid excess moisture (keep the cooling pads moist but not soaked) to create the most evaporation. It can be easy to confuse an evaporative cooler with an air conditioner--after all, they both have the job of keeping you cool. But while an air conditioning unit takes the humidity out of the air, an air-cooling swamp cooler is much better suited to the desert climes of New Mexico. Advantages and Disadvantages of Swamp Coolers Living in New Mexico, finding a home cooling option is essential. Being informed about your opportunities can help you bring the most comfort to your home. So what are the pros and cons of evaporative coolers? Swamp coolers' main advantage is that their operating costs are typically up to half that of central air conditioners. Other things to consider about swamp coolers are: Pros -Cheaper initial equipment cost than air conditioners -Cheaper operating costs -Straightforward installation Cons -Less control over the temperature in the house -Air is not cleaned as thoroughly as when you use an air conditioner -You may need to crack windows/open vents outside -Needs more maintenance than an air conditioner And remember: If you opt for both a central air unit and a swamp cooler, don't run them simultaneously. That will only put the systems at odds with each other and unnecessarily run up your energy bill. Signs Your Cooler Needs Repair The life expectancy of your cooler can vary based on how well you maintain it. However, all coolers will need to be replaced, eventually. Stay alert to see if your system is -leaking water -making strange noises -failing to produce cold air This could indicate that the machine is not energy-efficient and will likely increase your energy bill. Of course, preventative maintenance can increase the lifetime of your evaporative cooler. 5 Tips For an Efficient Swamp Cooler 1. Use Your Swamp Cooler in a Dry Climate If you’ve ever wondered why a humid day can make things so miserable, it's because your sweat is struggling to evaporate into the air– there’s already too much moisture in the air for the evaporation process to work efficiently. It's the same thing with an evaporative cooler. If the humidity level is too high, the water won't be able to evaporate quickly enough to lower the temperature—the swamp cooler functions by enabling cold water to dissipate into dry air. All of this signifies that New Mexico's consistently arid climate makes it an ideal place for evaporative cooler use. Call us for new installation services if you'd like to add one to your household. 2. Align With the Seasons In general, swamp coolers achieve peak efficiency when the relative humidity hovers around 70 percent. Once it reaches 75 percent or above, they lose effectiveness and can make things feel worse as they tend to make the air damper. Of course, a dry climate in New Mexico is the norm, but to be energy efficient, keep an eye on changing weather. 3. Open the Windows Running an evaporative cooler effectively may mean going against some of your ideas about traditional air conditioning. Since swamp coolers work by pulling in and cooling down warm air, they function best with a steady, proper airflow. The higher the air humidity, the less effective the swamp cooler will be. To help with the cooling process, crack your windows an inch or two to let damp air out and dry air in. 4. Prime the Pads First When you first turn on your swamp cooler, it needs time for the cooler pads to absorb the water entirely. Wet pads can wick moisture from the tank more easily, but it can take up to 15 minutes for the pads to reach saturation point. In order to use energy more efficiently, give the pads time to absorb water from the reservoir before turning on the fan. This will keep your machine from blowing hot air around before it's reached its full cooling abilities. 5. Get Routine Maintenance The best way to protect your investment is to maintain your air cooler's health before it passes the point of no return. Better a repair than a malfunction! We at Courtesy can perform a complete preventative maintenance checkup to ensure that your unit will have a long, healthy life. Have an inspection done before the high cooling season and right before retiring your cooler for the winter. You can care for your cooler throughout the season with the following tips: -Gently wipe down the exterior -Keep air intake grills and fans clean by vacuuming them -Semi-regularly rinse the water tank with a soap and water solution -Examine cooler pads for cracks or mildew, replacing them when necessary Make sure that the unit is thoroughly drained and cooling pads are completely dry before putting them away--storing a damp unit is a foolproof way to wind up with mold and mildew the following spring. In case of an unexpected breakdown, call our Emergency Repair Hotline at 306-382-4122. The Courtesy Plumbing and Heating Guarantee At Courtesy Plumbing and Heating, customer satisfaction is our goal. Air conditioning is one of our specialties. You can rely on us to make life your more pleasant, whether via installation, upgrade and replacement, our repair service, or preventative maintenance. Follow these swamp cooler tips and use our services so that you can stay cool in the New Mexico heat. Visit us at our website or call at 505-830-9099 to increase your comfort today.
May 12, 2021
Converting to Refrigerated Air in Albuquerque
Summer is Coming! Summer is right around the corner in Albuquerque! Are you worried about your swamp cooler cooling down your home or office this summer? If so, it might be time to make the change over to a refrigerated air conditioner! Swamp coolers, also known as evaporative air conditioners, are a thing of the past and are very ineffective when it comes to cooling. Not to mention that they are notoriously leaky and stain their surroundings. If you’ve been considering the changeover, you’ve come to the right place. It is vital to make the change before it gets too hot. Spring is the perfect time to make the change. Waiting until mid-summer could mean long wait times for service and weeks of miserably hot Albuquerque afternoons. About Refrigerated Air Conditioning You will love the change to refrigerated central air conditioning. You can set your temperature and forget it! These systems are all-in-one and allow you to switch between heating and cooling seamlessly, perfect for New Mexico weather. One main concern for people wanting to make the switch is cost. But nowadays, you’ll find that refrigerated air can be just as cost-efficient as evaporative cooling systems. Not to mention, refrigerated air doesn’t use the water that the alternative system does. A refrigeration system is used in a controlled environment and doesn’t have to be set up in a window or doorway, making it safer to have in a home. The New Mexican springtime and fall can also call for heating and cooling on the same day, making this the ideal system. What does it cost to make the switch? Here at Courtesy, we get this question a lot. The main thing that factors into cost is the overall size of the place we need to heat and cool. And next, we have to consider the energy efficiency of the unit. Your actual square footage will determine how big of a unit you’ll need. In homes over 2,500 square feet, you might even need two units. Also, buildings with multiple levels usually need a unit for each level. The electrical capabilities of your building might also influence the cost of home air conditioning installation. If you have old electrical panels, you might need to get an upgrade as well. Our team at Courtesy would be happy to evaluate your home for a new system and give you a quote and tell you what you can expect. Don’t wait until summer! Take care of your air conditioning system today. The Overall Difference Switching systems can be expensive on the front side. The unit itself will cost more than a swamp cooler, but you’ll be better off in the long run. Many New Mexicans find the cost well justified after they make the switch. You can’t put a price on a cool July kitchen in the middle of summer. You will also be adding value to our home. New home buyers expect to have refrigerated air conditioning units, and a swamp cooler could de-value your home in the event you want to re-sell. Even with a swamp cooler, you will notice over time that the cooler won’t cool down your home. The swamp cooler pulls outside air through a wet sponge to cool down the room. If it’s too hot outside, the air outside will simply not cool down enough to make a difference. People with swamp coolers complain of miserably hot summer days in Albuquerque. Bonus, if your family suffers from seasonal allergies, then you’ll love the refrigerated system. A new system won’t pull in air particles from the outdoors. Another big draw is that some of the new systems let you control your house temperature from your phone. Your Albuquerque Air Conditioning Technicians If you are ready to make the AC unit switch, we are ready to help. Our specialists have been working in Albuquerque for years and know about customers’ long-term needs. We will help guide you through system selection, and we’ll provide central air installation. Our 4.5 stars on Google speak for themselves! Call us today at 505-830-9099 to ask questions or get a quote for your home or business. We can have your place ready to go, just in time for summer!
November 11, 2021
When to Get Your Water Heater Repaired
A failing water heater doesn’t seem like a huge deal until you end up taking an ice-cold shower. Many homeowners don’t notice the worsening condition of their water heaters until it’s too late and cold water starts coming out of faucets. The water heater is continually working round the clock, every day all through the year. With the increased amount of stress it has to support, it’s no surprise that it is bound to give up at some point. But when only cold water starts coming out of your showers or taps, does the problem hit you in the literal sense. To avoid reaching the above stage, you need to be aware of the warning flags to help you know if your electric water heater needs servicing or repair. Once you understand why you’re running out of hot water so soon, calling a trusted plumbing expert is your best and safest option. Irregular/Fluctuation in Water Temperature If there is an issue with the water heater, you will notice a fluctuation or inconsistency in the water temperature. The water temperature will continue changing even if you haven’t made any changes to it. If your hot water seems to run hot and cold randomly despite what you tell it to do. In that case, there may be sediment buildup or accumulation of mineral deposits around the water heating components of the water tank. Call a water heater repair expert in Albuquerque as soon as you notice frequent fluctuations in the water temperature. Reduced Hot Water Pressure Mineral deposits or sediment buildup can cause additional harm to your water heater by reducing the pressure of hot water. The accumulation in the heating components of the water heater can wind up blocking pipes. The sediment buildup further reduces the pressure of the water coming from the water heater. Moreover, a traditional water heater also leads to reduced water pressure. Call a professional plumber to check up on your water heater. Consistently Cold Water Did you know that your water heater contains a thermostat that manages how hot your water gets? You may ask yourself this question, “why is my water getting cold frequently?” If you’re not getting any hot water by any chance, then your thermostat may be malfunctioning or set poorly! Most water heaters have a reset button. Troubleshooting or resetting your thermostat is as easy as clicking a button. Readjust the heat you want, then try resetting the thermostat again. If that still doesn’t do the job, give your neighborhood plumber a call. Cloudy or Discolored Water with an Unpleasant Smell Needless to say but the only water that comes out of your tap should be colorless. Sometimes, you might get cloudy water from your shower or faucets, which has a strange odor as well. If you notice that the water coming out of your taps is rusty, brownish, or has some tiny dark particles, your water heater is to blame. The discoloration in water texture and smell is mainly because of the mineral deposits or sediment buildup in the water heater. The water problems are a sign for you to call a plumber and prevent any further damage to your water heater. Moreover, cloudy water with a strange odor could signify a bacterial infection developing within the water tank, leading to a severe health hazard in your home. Ask a qualified water heater repair professional to come to inspect your hot water tank immediately. Hot Water Leakage Suppose you see water pooling around the tank or the pipes leading to the water heater. In that case, there is an immediate problem at hand for you. Leaks don’t usually stop on their own. When a leak occurs, it can also damage other elements within the water heater. If neglected, they can lead to significant property damage as well. It can even create a mold around the walls. However, leaks are easily detected and can be quickly taken care of by replacing the damaged component. Annual maintenance on traditional tank water heaters is necessary, including draining them thoroughly to remove the sediment buildup. This process is known as “flushing.” Funny/ Odd noises Coming from the water heater A slight noise coming from the water heater isn’t problematic. However, suppose this noise or sound gets more prevalent with time and becomes louder. In that case, it can signify a broken water heater or a tank that needs repairs. Strange Sounds from the tank are never a good sign as healthy water heaters work as quietly as possible. It’s pretty standard if your water heater makes a little noise. But suppose the noise becomes loud banging, rumbling, or cracking sounds. In that case, your water heater is not operating correctly, and you have a good reason to raise concerns. Many times the noises are caused due to unchecked mineral buildup, accumulation of sediment pile-up, or reduced water flow. When you notice a noise, shut the water heater and call for professional help. Another reason could be that the water heater has a broken dip tube causing cold and hot water to mix and create odd sounds. Too much noise may also weaken the fabrications of your water heater, causing it to become brittle and start leaking. It means that you’ll have to buy a new water heater or upgrade to a tankless water heater. Perks of switching to a tankless water heater Tankless water heaters, also known as on-demand water heaters, heat water only when required, decreasing wasted heat and energy. If you’re looking to switch your old water heater for an electric tankless one, here’s what to know. A tankless model can be a valuable and worthwhile upgrade. The tankless water heater lasts longer, uses minimum energy, offers endless hot water, and can reduce utility bills. Standard tanks keep about 30-50 gallons of water ready to go at all times. In contrast, tankless units only heat water that you are using at any given time. It is a natural gas-powered heating mechanism, taking around a day or two to install, depending on the tie-in locations for gas and the main water lines at your house. A downside to tankless water heaters is that they often cost double the price of a standard water tank. Plus, they still require annual maintenance. Nevertheless, they do last twice as long, for about 20 years and more. Call Courtesy Plumbing for Water Heater Maintenance. Water is the most commonly utilized resource in every household. The water heater at your Albuquerque home requires to be at a degree of warmth to ensure the comfort of each family member. A peak condition water heater not only reduces the maintenance and repair charges but also serves as an energy saver. Choose Courtesy Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning for commercial and residential water heater repair in Albuquerque, NM, and surrounding areas. Our team is ready to help! We have over 40 years of experience as a mechanical contractor. We aim to deliver a prompt and personalized service for a variety of mechanical needs. Call us at 505-830-9099 or write to us with your plumbing issue.