How Do I Know If I Need Furnace Services for My Long Island Home?

Winter has been brutal this year, the snowy, cold weather seemingly endless. Many people have relied on their furnaces more than usual this year. That has meant that their furnaces are working overtime – and sometimes that can lead to mechanical issues, especially if the furnace hasn’t received the regular maintenance it needs. It can be a little difficult to know if you need furnace services for your Long Island home, and who’s qualified to get you the help you need.

Clearly, if you notice anything like strange odors or unusual noises like banging or grinding coming from your furnace, call us right away because those point to serious concerns. We’re sharing a few more general concerns that can point to the need for furnace services below, courtesy of ENERGY STAR.

Five Signs That You Need Furnace Services

Rising Energy Bills

This can be a tough one to recognize, especially if you’ve been running your furnace more than usual. But, if your energy bills have increased dramatically, or if you notice a spike in cost from the beginning of the season to now, you could have some mechanical concerns happening. A marked increase in energy costs that can’t be accounted for by rising prices and/or usage could indicate your equipment isn’t operating as efficiently and effectively as it should, and should probably be checked out.

Hot or Cold Spots

If some of your rooms are way too warm, but others seem chilly, this could mean your equipment is operating improperly. It could also point to other problems in your home, like ductwork concerns or poor insulation. When you call T.F. O’Brien, we’ll help you get to the root of the hot/cold spot problem.

Air Quality Problems

If you’ve noticed an increase of dust and air particles over the course of winter, it could be a sign of concern for your heating system. While it could indicate that you have leaky ductwork in areas like attics, crawl spaces or basement, there could be another problem that’s far simpler to solve. Poor indoor air quality is often a sign of a dirty filter – and that can be easily remedied. It is generally recommended that equipment filters be changed monthly during times of heavy use. You can either DIY, or give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.

Unusual Dryness

Sometimes when furnace services are needed, homeowners will notice that their homes are unusually dry. Some indicators of overly dry air include itchy skin, nasal dryness, respiratory issues, creaking woodwork and furniture, and static cling. If you’re noticing a combination of these factors happening in your home, it could point to poor equipment operation, inadequately sized equipment, or ductwork concerns. 

Older Equipment

It’s just a fact – the older your furnace is, the harder it has to work to heat your home and the less efficient it is. If your furnace is more than 10 years old, it could be time to start thinking about a replacement, especially if you’ve been paying a lot for repairs or your energy bills are exorbitant. Hint: you can prolong the life of your furnace by getting annual maintenance.

You can count on T.F. O’Brien if you need furnace services for your Long Island home.

Just give us a call at 516.488.1800, and we’ll be more than happy to help you get the furnace services you need.

7 Reasons You Need Annual HVAC System Maintenance

HVAC Technician Inspects Heating and Cooling SystemConcerned about keeping your heating and cooling system in the best possible condition? No worries – annual maintenance can help! According to the Department of Energy, not getting system maintenance can lead to inefficiency and a steady decline in equipment performance.

 

Keeping your heating and cooling equipment well-maintained is crucial; T.F. O’Brien’s professional trained HVAC service technicians can help.

Still not sure annual HVAC system maintenance is what you need? Here are seven benefits that both your heating and cooling systems will enjoy:

1. Less worry about the safety of your HVAC system. 

Much like taking your vehicle for an annual tune-up, our technicians will inspect your entire HVAC system and equipment. They’ll check heating systems for issues like carbon monoxide, and cooling systems for refrigerant leaks. They’ll make sure electrical components are in good working order, so you can count on your system’s safety.

2. You’ll avoid an HVAC system breakdown at the worst possible time.

Maintenance keeps your heating and cooling system clean, and takes care of minor problems and repairs. Lack of cleaning and tune-up can, unfortunately, lead to a breakdown at the most inopportune time – either the coldest of winter nights, or a scorching summer day. That’s when we’re at our busiest, too, so finding immediate service can be a frustrating challenge.

3. You won’t void your HVAC system warranty.

Many manufacturers require that your heating and cooling system is regularly maintained in order to keep the warranty intact. Not getting the maintenance you need can mean you’ll be stuck with a major breakdown – and costly repairs that your warranty will no longer cover.

4. You’ll stay more comfortable all year-round.

Your home’s HVAC system needs to be at peak performance in order to keep your home toasty warm during the colder months, and cool and comfortable in the summer. With annual maintenance, you can count on better airflow. Not to mention, repairs or replacements can be made to any components not in proper working order

5. Your HVAC system will enjoy a longer life. 

When you make sure that your heating and cooling systems are properly maintained, you’re helping to ensure that they run better. Maintenance ensures a cleaned and lubricated system. It frees it of the gunk and buildup that can cause your system to run poorly. And, small issues are found and repaired easily before they cause premature system failure.

6. You’ll save money on heating and cooling. 

When you call for maintenance, part of the service includes cleaning of your system. That’s important, because when a heating or cooling system is dirty it works harder, and much less efficiently – taking more money from your wallet when it comes time to pay utility bills.

7. Your whole family will breathe easier. 

Changing the air filter is an important part of HVAC maintenance. When your system circulates air through a dirty filter, those particles make their way into the air you and your family breathe. Getting the seasonal maintenance your system needs keeps indoor air free of mold, pollen and dust.

To take advantage of all of these great benefits, and have a qualified HVAC service technician inspect your system – call T.F. O’Brien today. We look forward to helping you with your annual maintenance needs – just give our service department a call at 516-488-1800 Monday through Friday between 8:30am and 4:30pm, and we’ll be happy to assist you! You can also Schedule your HVAC System Maintenance by clicking here.

 

Made for Each Other: Ductless & Converted Spaces

Many times, homeowners decide to add to their home’s space, whether by building an addition or remodeling parts of their home that may not have been ideal living areas before. Unfortunately, often these areas don’t have access to the home’s ductwork, and adding it may be impractical or impossible. How can you get these areas of your home the climate control they need? You should know, ductless and converted spaces are made for each other!

If you’ve added to your home, or if you’ve converted a garage, attic or basement into an area for you and your family to enjoy, ductless heating and cooling can help keep that area comfortable. It both effectively heats and cools your home, so it’s perfect for year-round use. Not to mention, by keeping a consistent climate throughout your home, your main heating and cooling systems will operate more efficiently, too.

There are several benefits to installing ductless in your converted spaces.

While it goes without saying that a ductless system will make those areas of your home without ductwork more comfortable, you should know that there are other advantages to ductless as well.

  • Ductless heating and cooling is efficient. Because they use advanced heat pump technology, ductless systems offer high efficiency. As a result, they’re an extremely cost-effective choice for your space.
  • Ductless systems are quiet. These systems are made to operate so that they don’t disturb homeowners with noisy operation. Space heaters can emit a buzzing noise, and  window AC units are often loud. Conversely, ductless is whisper-quiet, so you’re able to better enjoy the comfort.
  • Heating and cooling with ductless can help with air quality. Ductless systems are made to filter the conditioned air they push out into your living space. They trap many of the particles that can get circulated through the air. As a result, ductless creates a cleaner environment with fewer allergens.
  • Ductless systems are non-obtrusive. Having your ductless system installed requires very little construction work, and you won’t have to worry about the cost and mess that comes with adding ductwork to your home. And, ductless systems are made to blend in seamlessly with virtually any home décor.

Make your converted space or addition one the whole family falls in love with this February – choose ductless heating and cooling to make it a welcoming area year round. At T.F. O’Brien, we’re happy to help you get the ductless system you need for your home. Just give us a call at 516.488.1800, and we’ll see if ductless is the perfect match for you!

Show Your Furnace the Love This Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is all about hearts and flowers, so adding your home’s furnace into the equation might not exactly seem like the most romantic thing to do. But did you know that if you show your furnace a little love by getting it the maintenance it needs, it’ll save you money? And that’s extra money you can spend on special gifts for your Valentine!

 

Here are five ways maintenance gives your furnace the love it needs:

  • Annual maintenance helps your furnace operate more efficiently. Maintenance helps to free your furnace of dirt and debris buildup, and keeps all the moving parts well lubricated so that it runs, quite literally, like a well-oiled machine. And when it operates more efficiently, you’ll likely save money on your utility bills.
  • Maintenance can keep the need for repairs at bay. It helps catch small problems before they become larger, much more expensive issues. That’s because qualified technicians are analyzing your system on an annual basis, and can easily spot any concerns that might become bigger problems for you down the road.
  • A well-maintained furnace is a longer-lived furnace. As mentioned above, annual maintenance helps find potential problems and allows you to take care of them right away. And, maintenance keeps your furnace clean and operating efficiently, which can add to its lifespan.
  • Preventive maintenance keeps your warranty intact. You might not realize this, but chances are if you read the fine print on your equipment warranty, you’ll see that annual maintenance is required. Most manufacturers view annual maintenance as a reasonable measure the homeowner can take to keep equipment running smoothly. And, not getting maintenance may void your warranty.
  • The air in your home stays cleaner, too. One of the best ways you can help maintain your furnace is by cleaning or changing the filter when it becomes dirty. The air that flows through the filter into your home will contain fewer contaminants as a result. Not only will you breathe easier, but also your furnace will operate better when it doesn’t have to force air through a dirty filter. We’ll clean or change your filter during your annual maintenance, but ideally you should change it monthly during times of high usage.

Getting annual maintenance from T.F. O’Brien is easy.

At T.F. O’Brien, we love providing our customers with the services they need to keep their furnaces running effectively and efficiently all year long. And, showing your furnace the love it needs this winter is easy when you work with us. All you need to do is call us at 516.488.1800, or request an appointment online, and we’ll be more than happy to schedule your maintenance appointment with you.

Use All Your Spaces This Winter With Ductless Heating

When the warmer weather starts to change over to crisp days and colder nights, many homeowners close off areas of their home that don’t have the benefit of the home’s heating system. Spaces like converted attics, finished basements, additions and sunrooms often don’t have the needed ductwork to heat them during the winter months. The result? People usually close them off until warmer weather returns. But there’s an easy way to make your spaces without ducts usable, and perfectly climate-controlled, all winter long – ductless heating.

Ductless heating offers homeowners a way to keep areas of their home, where ductwork is impractical or impossible, comfortable – no matter what the weather is like outside. Unlike space heaters, which can be loud, obtrusive and even dangerous, ductless can mount on your wall or ceiling and offers complete comfort control of your space for you and your family. What’s more, ductless systems also offer cooling in the summer, so when you install one in a space in your home, you can comfortably use that area all year long.

Does ductless installation require a lot of time and construction?

Ductless systems are generally simple to install, and require minimal construction. In most cases, installation takes a day or two. All that’s required to connect the indoor and outdoor units is a small hole, usually no more than three inches in diameter. You can count on your T.F. O’Brien technician to have your ductless heating system up and running in no time. There’s very little mess, and no need for ductwork installation.

Besides being able to use your converted attic, finished basement, addition or sunroom year-round, you’ll also enjoy many additional benefits. Ductless systems are simple to use – you’ll be able to control room temperature at the touch of a button. Not to mention, ductless is highly energy efficient – much more than a space heater or window air conditioner. They blend seamlessly with your décor and offer quiet operation – all while delivering year-round comfort to your space.

Can T.F. O’Brien help me get the ductless system I need?

This winter, you don’t have to sacrifice space in your home just because it doesn’t have access to ductwork. You can enjoy year-round comfort by installing ductless heating and air conditioning from T.F. O’Brien Cooling & Heating. You can trust our highly skilled technicians to provide you with courteous, professional services. Simply give us a call at 516.488.1800, and we’ll be glad to assist you.

Happy October from T.F. O’Brien

October is here, and with it comes cooler breezes, more colorful leaves, and the scent of pumpkin spice in the air. The kids are thinking about the perfect Halloween costume, and you and your family might be taking weekend journeys to apple orchards and pumpkin farms.
Amidst all the fun fall has to offer, don’t forget to give us a call to schedule your heating maintenance! It’s the best way to ensure your heating system will run great, no matter how cool the weather outside gets!
With the cooler weather in mind, we at T.F. O’Brien are thinking ahead to those who are less fortunate. That’s why we’ve started a Winter Coat Drive. Click here for details on how you can help us keep people warmer this winter. And, storm season is coming, and that can mean power outages. Find out how a generator can help you weather the storm by clicking here.

Plus, check out these energy-saving tips from NYSERDA:

  • Choose the cold setting on your washer. Whenever possible, wash your laundry with cold water to save on the energy it takes to heat up water for warm and hot settings.
  • Compute with care. Choose to plug computers and other electronics into an advanced power strip. Also, consider choosing a laptop over a desk computer – laptops are more energy efficient.
  • Check your filters. Take a look at the air filters on your home’s HVAC equipment, especially during the high use months. Change out the filter if it’s dirty. That will help your system run more efficiently.
  • Consider a programmable thermostat. That way, you won’t have to worry about adjusting the thermostat to fit your schedule – it will automatically adjust for when you’re sleeping or away from home.
  • Change your light bulbs. By swapping out incandescent light bulbs for ENERGY STAR certified LEDs, you can save energy and on future bulb purchases – LEDs last up to 25 times longer than traditional bulbs.
Enjoy your October! Thank you for reading.
Kerry O’Brien

5 Tips for Maximizing Your Air Conditioner’s Efficiency

August is known for its hazy, hot and humid weather. Chances are, you’ll be running your air conditioning system much of the time. No matter how efficient your air conditioner is, it still uses energy, and that can get costly if it’s operating most of the time. The good news is, there are a few ways you can maximize your efficiency, making it so your air conditioner doesn’t have to work as hard.

Here are five tips that can help:

  1. Seal leaky doors and windows. That way, the cold air won’t escape inside – and the hot outdoor air won’t come in.
  2. Put your ceiling fans to work. Make sure your fans are set to counterclockwise – this helps create a cooler feel to the air.
  3. Make sure your filters are clean. When your air conditioning system runs frequently, its filters can get clogged with dirt and dust. Change it out often during high-use months for better effectiveness and efficiency from your air conditioning system.
  4. Consider a smart thermostat. You’ll have greater control over your AC system. Many smart thermostats “learn” your habits, so they’ll automatically set sleeping and away temperatures. And, most smart thermostats can be controlled even when you’re not there with a convenient phone app.
  5. Keep the heat in your kitchen to a minimum. On very hot days, consider grilling out, using the microwave, or using the Crock-Pot. Turning on your oven can add significantly to the heat of your home, making your AC work harder.

Of course, if you’re concerned about your air conditioning system’s efficiency or effectiveness, or if you’re paying way more on your utility bills than you should be, you should give T.F. O’Brien a call. We can check out your system to rule out any issues, and if there are problems, we can make the needed repairs. To learn more, call us at 516-488-1800, and we’ll be happy to help you.

5 Reasons Why VRV Air Conditioning is Perfect for Your Home or Office

When you need an energy-efficient cooling option for your home or business, you may want to consider variable refrigerant volume (VRV) air conditioning. These systems offer targeted air conditioning for your home or office, and are built with advanced technology that allows them to be highly energy efficient and to provide optimal cooling for your space. Of course, VRV has several benefits that you’ll enjoy for your home or office.

Here are five reasons why you should consider installing VRV air conditioning:

1. It’s efficient.

When you choose to install VRV air conditioning in your home or office, you can look forward to energy savings. They circulate only the minimum amount of refrigerant needed. And, they offer individual climate control of air conditioning zones. This means they use less energy – and that will save you money in the long run on your utility bills.

2. It requires little to no ductwork.

VRV systems are engineered to minimize or eliminate the need for ductwork. When you install one of these air conditioning systems, you won’t have to deal with the mess and hassle of adding ductwork to your home. And, because VRV systems operate without the need for additional ductwork, they’re perfect for spaces like additions, converted attics and finished basements.

3. It’s easy to design and install.

You won’t have to worry about your home or office being a construction zone for weeks when you choose to have a VRV air conditioning system installed. Designing these systems is simple because there is a wide selection of units available, ensuring that each particular unit installed is suited to its environment. And, because installation is simpler than with traditional air conditioning systems, you won’t have the mess and weeks of construction.

4. It requires little maintenance.

VRV systems require little maintenance and are highly reliable. As long as you get the annual maintenance on your VRV air conditioning system as you would a traditional system, you should notice amazing reliability, energy efficiency and cooling effectiveness from the moment of installation and for years to come.

5. It’s readily available from T.F. O’Brien.

When you work with T.F. O’Brien, you’ll have access to our full lineup of air conditioning products and services, including VRV air conditioning. You can count on our highly skilled technicians to install your VRV system to perfection. We ensure our technicians are trained in all the latest technologies, so we’re able to provide you with quality products and expert installation. We trust Daikin® to provide our customers with the very best in variable refrigerant volume air conditioning systems for their homes and offices.

Contact T.F. O’Brien today to learn more about VRV AC.

Don’t suffer through another sweltering summer – choose the professionals at T.F. O’Brien Cooling & Heating to help with all of your VRV air conditioning needs. T.F. O’Brien proudly serves all of Long Island, including Nassau County, Suffolk County, and Brooklyn, and is ready to assist you. Simply call us at 516.488.1800 and one of our friendly representatives will be more than happy to help you.

Variable Refrigerant Volume (VRV) Air Conditioning on Long Island

Variable refrigerant volume (VRV) air conditioning is a technology that minimizes efficiency losses that are found in conventional systems, and is engineered to minimize or use no ductwork. Because the VRV air conditioning system is energy efficient and simpler to design, install and maintain, it can save Long Island, NY commercial and residential customers on energy and provide sustainable energy benefits.

Posted by T.F.O'Brien & Co., Inc. on Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Beat the Summer Heat this July with T.F. O’Brien

July is here, and the heat has made our rough winter long forgotten. It’s definitely been a warm one so far, and we’re busy making sure our customers are able to stay cool and comfortable. If you’re noticing the slightest concern with your air conditioning system, it’s a good idea to give us a call and set up an appointment ahead of a breakdown, so we can help ensure you stay cool and comfortable.

We offer a full listing of air conditioning services, including AC repair and maintenance. And, we install a complete range of air conditioning products which include central air, high efficiency, ductless, and more. We will be more than happy to meet with you and discuss what system would be perfect for your home and lifestyle. Just give us a call at 516.488.1800 to set up a consultation with one of our comfort specialists.

This month, click here to learn how you can keep your home cool – and your energy bills lower. And, did you know home generators can help you weather a summer storm? Or maybe you’re holding out on installing AC. Here are some reasons NOT to get AC for your home this summer.

We hope you have a great July, and thank you for reading.

Enjoy!

Kerry O’Brien

What Type of AC is Best for Your Home?

You don’t have to suffer through a heat wave this summer when you rely on T.F. O’Brien to help you get the relief you need. We provide air conditioning installation, done to your complete satisfaction. We’re committed to the comfort of our customers, which is why we’ve always been a leader in innovative home comfort products and have stayed on top of all the latest new technologies. We can help you stay cool this summer, in a way that’s perfect for your home and your lifestyle. We offer a number of different types of air conditioning products, so we’re sure to find just the right one for you and your family.

We’re pleased to offer traditional central air conditioning for your home, as well as ductless, high velocity, and heat pump systems:

Central Air Conditioning: Central air is very common, and if you already have a central air conditioning system in your home, replacing it with another when the time comes is a fairly simple process, because the ductwork is already in place. If your system is older, switching to new, high-efficiency central air can help you save money on your utility bills, and keep your home more comfortable all summer long.

High-Velocity AC: This type of air conditioning system is perfect for older, multi-story homes that lack ductwork, but are in need of improved home cooling. This is an ideal system for adding air conditioning to homes where larger ductwork may be impossible or impractical. High velocity air conditioning offers a dehumidified, cooler environment while providing complete and thorough air conditioning.

Ductless Air Conditioning: Do you have a room in your home that you’d like to be more climate controlled, but where ductwork might be impractical or impossible? For spaces where adding ductwork isn’t really a great option, ductless, or mini-split, air conditioning can help. Ductless units are great for additions, finished basements, converted garages and other areas of your home where cooling is needed.

Heat Pumps: It may sound counterintuitive, but heat pumps not only help to heat your home in the winter; they can help you stay cool during the summer months as well. The heat pumps we install have been engineered to work great in colder climates, and can provide your home with appropriate levels of cooling all summer long. And, they have achieved an Energy Star rating, and use a non ozone-depleting refrigerant.

The professionals at T.F. O’Brien can help you decide which type of air conditioning is best for your home. Simply call us at 516.488.1800 and one of our friendly representatives will be more than happy to help you.