How to Lower Your Air Conditioning Costs

July 18th, 2014

Many people think that the only way to keep air conditioning costs low is to turn the system off completely. But there are many other ways to stay cool and get the most efficiency possible out of your AC this summer. If you’re worried about air conditioning costs, try some of these money-saving tips.

  • Clean or Replace Filters: You should replace the air filter in your AC system about once every month. Dirty air filters can restrict airflow, which interferes with both performance and efficiency.
  • Regular Maintenance: One way to restore efficiency to your system is with an annual maintenance visit by a professional technician. During maintenance, a technician will clean and adjust some of the components of your system and inspect for any repair needs you may have. Systems that receive regular tune-ups tend to maintain a much higher percentage of their energy efficiency than those that do not.
  • A Programmable Thermostat: If you upgrade to a programmable thermostat, you won’t have to worry about wasting money leaving the air conditioner on all day just so that you will be greeted by cool air when you arrive home. Programmable thermostats allow you to adjust the temperature throughout the day to save money at peak hours.
  • Know When to Replace: Sometimes, upgrades and maintenance aren’t enough to make your system more efficient. If you have an older system, the parts may be too worn out to provide efficient cooling, and air conditioning replacement is sometimes necessary. A system that is over ten years old may have a high risk of sudden breakdowns, and replacement may be the best option in this case.
  • Choose an Energy-Efficient System: If you decide it’s time for replacement, check the EnergyGuide label to decide if your system will help you save money every month. This guide displays an air conditioner’s Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER), as well as the ENERGY STAR label, if applicable. Air conditioners must have a SEER of 13 to be sold in the United States. To receive the ENERGY STAR label, systems must have at least a 14.5 SEER and meet other qualifications as well. A higher SEER indicates a more efficient system.

Lanz Heating & Cooling offers professional air conditioning services in Danville, IL. For maintenance, upgrades, and more, call us today!

Why You Need a Specialist for Commercial Air Conditioning Repair

July 10th, 2014

During the summer, a business that cannot properly cool down its workspace risks losing money from inefficient, unhappy workers and/or displeased and uncomfortable clients, customers, and tenants. If the air conditioning in your commercial building starts to show signs of a malfunction, you must call for repairs right away from technician trained in commercial HVAC systems.

Don’t consider call just any repair service: you need to have specialists familiar with commercial work to handle this job. For quality commercial air conditioning service in Fisher, IL, make the call to Lanz Heating & Cooling. We have repair technicians who can tackle your faulty AC any time of the day or night.

The Reasons to Rely on Commercial Specialists for AC Repairs

  • Commercial systems are vastly different from residential systems: The differences between commercial and residential HVAC goes beyond just the relative size of the systems. Commercial air conditioning is usually configured as packaged units (rare for homes) and are modular so they can expand their cooling load. Commercial air conditioning also relies on complex networks of thermostats and zone control dampers in the ventilation that requires special training and experience to handle. A technician who only knows home ACs will have little idea how to treat the specifics of cooling a business.
  • They understand the comfort requirements of businesses: A skilled commercial HVAC repair technician will not only grasp the mechanics of air conditioning, but also the way that commercial spaces need to be cooled. An AC for a business must take care of the comfort needs of multiple people and also account for the large amount of heat generated from computers, appliances, and machinery. Finding the right balance with air conditioning in a workspace is difficult, so the repair job for commercial ACs should be left to people with experience dealing with these situations.
  • They know how to work as unobtrusively as possible: An experienced repair technician who knows his or her way around commercial systems will also know how to treat your business and its employees and customers with respect. The technician will make sure to leave the work areas around the air conditioning system as clean and protected as possible, and also limit the amount of disruptions the work will cause. You will probably not even know the technician was there—until your air conditioner roars back to life.

At Lanz Heating & Cooling, we know how important running your business is to you. That’s why we offer 24-hour emergency service from highly trained professional technicians. They have the skills necessary to restore your cooling to keep your employees and customers content—without causing you additional headaches. Contact us for all your needs for commercial air conditioning in Fisher, IL.

Denmark Also Celebrates the Fourth of July

July 4th, 2014

Maybe an elementary school teacher tried to trip you up with this test question: “Do other countries have a Fourth of July?” If the teacher had phrased the question as, “Do other countries celebrate the Fourth of July?” you would be less likely to slip up and answer “no.”

Except… and your teacher probably didn’t know this at the time… there is another country that celebrates the Fourth of July. They don’t celebrate a holiday that happens to fall on July 4 (there are quite a few of those spread across the globe), but they actually celebrate U.S. Independence Day.

That country is—Denmark.

Every July 4, in the Rebild Region in the north of Denmark, thousands of people gather in Rebild National Park to hold the largest Fourth of July celebration outside the U.S.A., an events known as Rebildfesten. This tradition has continued for over a hundred years now, starting in 1912. The origins of this unusual celebration is that in 1911 a ground of Danish Americans purchased the 140 acres of the parkland between the woods in Rold and the Lindenborg stream. The next year, they deeded the land to the Danish King and people of the country as a memorial to Danish Americans, under the condition that the place remain undeveloped, open to the public, and used to celebrate U.S. holidays. Today, the park also hosts a museum on the history of Danish immigrants to the U.S., housed inside a log cabin.

This display of solidarity with the U.S. is because of the country’s warm welcome of 300,000 Danish settlers who were among the earliest to migrate across the seas. The celebration continues as sign of the long friendship between the two nations.

Since its inception, the celebration has hosted famous speakers such as the members of the Danish royal family (the queen and princess both attended for the 100th anniversary), Walt Disney, Keith Carradine, and Richard Chamberlain. The festivities actually start two days earlier, but on the fourth is when the major parade is held (which marches over 3 miles from the train station) and the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra performs a selections of music from both countries.

Although we doubt you will be celebrating your Fourth of July in Denmark this year, we at Lanz Heating & Cooling hope you have a fantastic Independence Day.

Repair or Replace: How to Treat Your Older Air Conditioner

June 27th, 2014

If your home has an older air conditioner, treat it well. But when the time comes for a costly air conditioning repair in Danville, IL, how does one know whether it is worth fixing, or whether replacement is a better option?

This is a big decision for your home and your budget. The best person to talk to is a qualified AC technician who can inspect your system and help you decide if a new system is likely to save you more money over time. However, there are some signs to look for when deciding whether to repair or replace your older air conditioner.

Repair

Often, all you need to get your system back in working order is a repair. If your system is less than ten years old, a repair is probably the best option. Your system may actually last much longer when you clean or replace the air filters regularly, and schedule yearly maintenance. Repairs are a normal part of owning an air conditioner, so even if you have had several repairs in the last few years, it may not mean you need to replace your system.

Replace

However, an AC that needs frequent, costly repairs may not be worth repairing. You shouldn’t try to fix a component that will only fail again soon. A technician can give you more accurate information regarding your specific situation, but you may consider replacing your AC system if:

  • You have spent a lot of money on repairs in the last couple of years.
  • Your energy bills have increased over the years, even with regular maintenance.
  • You would like to reduce your energy consumption with a newer, more energy-efficient system.
  • A qualified technician warns that a repair is unlikely to keep your system running smoothly and efficiently for much longer.

Today, there are many high-performance, energy-efficient air conditioning options for your home. Although replacing your old system may seem expensive, what you save on repairs and your monthly bills in the long term can more than make up for this one-time cost.

For excellent service, call Lanz Heating & Cooling for air conditioning repair in Danville, IL.

3 Things You Need to Know about Geothermal Cooling

June 20th, 2014

Are you giving serious consideration to installing geothermal cooling as your next option for home air conditioning? Good for you: geothermal is a growing field for home comfort that not only benefits you, but also benefits the environment with emission-free performance and use of renewable energy.

You are probably already aware that going geothermal is a large choice, and the installation work is more extensive and will take longer than that of a standard home comfort system. Make sure that you rely on the geothermal experts in Champaign, IL at Lanz Heating & Cooling to help you with this process. We will make sure that geothermal cooling is the right choice for your home, and then provide you with excellent installation that will ensure your new system works well for many years.

Here are three important facts you need to know about geothermal cooling:

1. Geothermal Cooling is Also Geothermal Heating

When you invest in geothermal comfort for your home, you are receiving heating as well as cooling. Geothermal systems are ground-source heat pumps, which means like heat pumps they can move heat both out of your home (air conditioning) and into your home (heating). However, they use the stable heat of the earth as the medium for exchange, unlike air-source heat pumps. Because of the reliable ground temperature 10 ft. beneath the surface, you never have to worry about a ground-source heat pump turning inefficient during the winter.

2. Geothermal Systems Will Save You Money in the Long-Term

Some homeowners shy away from geothermal installation because of the higher initial price tag. However, the efficient performance of geothermal heat pumps means they will start paying back their costs almost immediately. The U.S. EPA estimates that a geothermal system will return its installation investment in 5–10 years. The longevity of a geothermal heat pump (the underground coils can last more than 50 years!) means you will have plenty of time to reap the benefits of its energy-saving properties.

3. Geothermal Systems Use Different Ground Loop Configurations to Fit Your Property

One of the restrictions of geothermal heat pumps is that they need enough space for their underground coils in order to work. Fortunately, there is more than one configuration for the ground loops to make it easier to fit them for different properties. The common set-up is horizontal loops buried 6–10 ft. below the ground. However, deeper vertical loops are common when there is less space available. Either configuration will deliver the quality performance you need from the system.

The technicians at Lanz Heating & Cooling are ready to help you discover the best way to supply your home with the efficient and long-lasting power of geothermal in Champaign, IL. Give us a call today to find out more about how geothermal systems operate and your other options for energy-saving home comfort.

What is the Condensate Pan?

June 13th, 2014

Here in Danville, IL, air conditioning repair services are accustomed to handling all kinds of issues. Among the more common are problems with the condensate pan, which can be surprisingly problematic when they arise. What is the condensate pan and what kind of trouble is associated with it? We’ve included a brief discussion below.

As your air conditioner cools the air, the moisture in it coalesces into beads of condensation on the evaporator coils. (The process is similar to the creation of dew on your lawn in the early hours of the morning.) The condensate pan exists to remove that moisture from the system safely. As the condensation drips down, it falls into the pan. A drain line attached to the pan removes the liquid, keeping electronic components and similar parts of the system safe from shorts or water damage.

Normally, a condensate pan works just fine: it’s simple and doesn’t involve any complicated parts that can break down on you. That doesn’t mean it can’t suffer damage, however. Clogs in the drain line will cause it to overflow, as will a crack in the pan or even just the pan becoming misaligned. In addition, pans can overflow due to problems with other parts of the system. For instance, if refrigerant levels are low, then ice will form on the evaporator coils. When it melts, it could quickly fill up the pan faster than the melted water can drain out of it.

The result of such issues is invariably the same. Overflowing condensation will damage or short out other components in the air conditioner, and suddenly a comparatively minor repair takes on serious proportions. Some air conditioners have a safety feature: a floater switch that shuts the system off when the water rises too high. But even then, you’ll still need to correct the problem with the condensate pan before the system will function again.

Air conditioning repair services in Danville, IL like the folks at Lanz Heating & Cooling can resolve your problems quickly and efficiently. We teat issues with the condensate pan on a regular basis, and can replace a defunct one if a repair isn’t feasible. Give us a call today and let us how you what we can do!

Common Repairs for Toilets

June 6th, 2014

Few appliances in your home see heavier use than toilets, and when something goes wrong, you need to get the problem fixed as quickly as possible. The good news is that toilets are comparatively simple devices, so repairing them can usually take place quickly. The bad news is that when problems do arise, you typically need a professional to take care of them properly.  In Seymour, IL, bathroom plumbing services handle common repairs for toilets all the time. The more you can be prepared for them, the faster you can react when they arise.

Common repairs for toilets can include, but are not limited to the following.

  • Leaks. Leaks often occur at the line between the toilet and the rest of the plumbing system. A good repairman can replace the line without too much difficulty. In some cases, however, it’s more serious: there’s a crack in the tank or in the toilet bowl itself. In such cases, it’s usually best to simply replace the entire toilet, rather than try to patch the crack.
  • Phantom flushes. When the flapper valve corrodes or the refill tube has trouble, it can create a sudden draining and refilling of the water. These “phantom” flushes can cost you a lot of money in higher water bills and increase strain on the other components of your toilet. The valve or line needs to be replaced before it will function as normal.
  • Slow to refill. A toiler that is slow to refill can be extremely annoying, running for far longer than it should. This usually indicates a problem with the shutoff valve – either with the valve itself, or with something blocking it in some way – and can be corrected by replacing the valve or removing the blockage.

Regardless of the cause of the problem, you need a trained plumber to handle it appropriately. Bathroom plumbing and other plumbing services in Seymour, IL can be provided by Lanz Heating & Cooling. We have the proper skills to identify the problem and resolve it smoothly, while treating your home with the utmost respect in the process. If you need common repairs for toilets, or even not-so-common repairs, pick up the phone and give us a call today!

Stages of Geothermal System Installation

May 30th, 2014

Geothermal systems are an innovative way of heating and cooling your home, drawing upon the ambient temperature of the earth itself to do the job. Once you get down past five or six feet under the ground, the temperature of the earth doesn’t change, which the system can use to facilitate a heat exchange. Tubes are planted beneath the ground, and a water and antifreeze solution is pumped through it. In the summer, the tubes pull heat from your home and release it into the ground. In the winter, they pull heat from the ground and bring it into your home. It’s very efficient and environmentally friendly, and here in St. Joseph IL, geothermal systems make a lot of sense. But before you pull the trigger on a new system, you should understand the basic stages of geothermal system installation. We’ve provided a basic outline below.

  • The technician surveys your property and plans out the placement of the system: usually either horizontal (spreading the tubes out across a wide, shallow field), vertical (sinking the tubes beneath a single deep shaft, in cases where you don’t have a lot of property space), or water-based (in cases where you have a pond or similar body of water on your property).
  • The technician excavates the land where the tubes will go, digging holes (and grouting the sides in the case of vertical installations) then digging a trench back to your home.
  • The technician installs a water-to-water heat pump inside your home, providing the energy required to pump the mixture through the tubes and disperse the warm or cool air through your home.
  • The technician lays out the tubing in the holes, usually in coils, and then attaches them to your pump inside the home.
  • The technician tests the system to make sure it works and then buries the tubes by filling in the holes and trenches.

Every home is different, which means that the stages of geothermal system installation could very slightly from case to case. That’s what you should talk to the experts at Lanz Heating & Cooling before proceeding. Geothermal installation services in St. Joseph, IL don’t get more reliable, and we’ll discuss every step without before performing the operation with courtesy and care. Pick up the phone and give us a call today!

Why Are Commercial Air Conditioning Systems Located on the Roof?

May 23rd, 2014

Even people who don’t work in commercial buildings know that the majority of businesses have their HVAC systems located on the roof. (At the very least, people have seen action movies with foot chases and shoot-outs on the top of buildings where the characters use rooftop AC cabinets for shelter from opposing gunfire.) But why are the HVAC units for businesses located up there—aside from providing cover for action scenes in movies? There are some interesting reasons, and we’ll look at a few of them in this post.

Commercial HVAC systems need specialized work that goes far beyond the domain of amateurs or even professionals with residential comfort training. To protect your business’ comfort during summer, call on services for commercial air conditioning in Ogden, IL from Lanz Heating & Cooling. We are a trustworthy source for excellent HVAC repairs and maintenance for businesses.

Why you find most commercial ACs on rooftops

The great workhorses of the commercial HVAC world are packaged rooftop units, which combine heating and cooling in one convenient cabinet. Larger businesses will have more than one unit on the roof, working together to provide sufficient cooling in the summer and heating in the winter that will keep employees and customers happy.

In the earliest days of commercial air conditioning, only buildings in major downtown areas were equipped with cooling. The layout of U.S. cities in those days (pre-World War II) pressed commercial buildings close to each other, as we can still see in the older downtown sections of Chicago. There simply was no space to place the large cabinets for air conditioners—except up on the roof. So the rooftop unit started as a basic expediency.

But when U.S. cities began to expand and more commercial buildings moved into the suburbs, the rooftop unit remained as the system of choice. They look more visually appealing removed from the public areas around a building, and permit a better use of floor space. Rooftop units are also more convenient for repair and maintenance technicians to access, and they can do so without disturbing workflow. The tradition that started out of necessity because of the nature of U.S. cities has turned into the ideal way to position HVAC systems.

No matter where the air conditioning system in your business is located, you must have specialists in commercial HVAC take care of the necessary repair work. When you call on Lanz Heating & Cooling to handle your commercial air conditioning in Ogden, IL, you’ll receive top level repair and maintenance work from technicians with excellent training. You can reach us 24 hours a day whenever you need help to keep your business comfortable and your workers, customers, and clients happy. Give us a call today.

3 Reasons to Hire a Professional Plumber

May 16th, 2014

If you encounter a clog in a sink, what should you do? Hopefully, you have a sink plunger on hand, and you can use that to attempt to clear away the clog. Sometimes, this will be enough. But what should you do if it isn’t? If you know that you shouldn’t use chemical drain cleaners (and you shouldn’t), do you hunt out a tool belt stocked with wrenches, crawl under the sink, and try to detach the pipes to get at the mysterious and obstinate blockage? Or call a friend who’s handy with these sorts of jobs?

No… you should call a professional plumber! In fact, beyond any job as simple as clearing out a clog using a plunger, you should always call professional plumbers for any issue in your plumbing system. There’s no shortage of plumbers available, but make sure you call one with experience and commitment to excellence. Lanz Heating & Cooling has more than a decade of work helping residents of Danville, IL with plumbing trouble, and we take pride in the quality of service we provide.

Here are 3 reasons to rely on professional plumbers

  1. Equipment: Plumbers have the professional-grade tools necessary to handle tasks that are far beyond the capability of store-bought wrenches and plungers. Plumbers use leak detection equipment to pinpoint leaking pipes through thick concrete flooring, and clear drain clogs with hydro-jetters and motor-powered drain snakes. For any plumbing task, professional plumbers have the right tools and—most importantly—the training to use them correctly.
  2. Speed: Professional plumbers work every day on home plumbing. For most repairs that will require you call a plumber, he or she has probably already done the same job three times that week. Professionals can get work done far faster than any amateur without needing to rush. With skilled plumbers, you’ll have the work finished quickly and without worry that it was done poorly.
  3. Cost: Yes, it’s less expensive to go with a professional plumber than to try to do the work on your own or call on amateurs. Trying to perform repairs without proper training will often lead to larger plumbing issues, and you will need to call on the professionals eventually anyway—only now they will have a more expensive job to take care of. Mistakes in plumbing can also lead to flooding and water damage in your house. Save yourself the risks of astronomical repair costs and call the experts in from the start.

There are many more reasons that you should turn to trusted and licensed plumbers for fixing your plumbing in Danville, IL. Find out for yourself the difference that trained professionals make the next time you have leaks, high water pressure, drain clogs, or any other plumbing trouble: call Lanz Heating & Cooling.