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FAQs

Why is the cost of R-22 so high?

Over the past few years, the price of R-22 has dramatically increased as much as 200%. The EPA controls how much R-22 can be produced annually. The EPA reduced the amount of R-22 in 2012 by 45% with a temporary short term allocation. In March of 2013, the EPA finalized the allocations for 2013 and 2014 with an additional overall reduction of 7%. These reductions will continue until 2020 when the production of R-22 will cease. Each year there will be fewer R-22 produced so the costs could continue to rise.

How to clean your Trane Clean Effects Air Cleaner.

How to change your filters on a downflow furnace, installed by SS&B Heating & Cooling.

How to replace your filter on a upflow furnace installed by SS&B Heating & Cooling.

How do I program All-New VisionPRO 8000 w/RedLINK & IAQ Contacts, Programmable Thermostat

How to program All-New VisionPRO 8000 w/RedLINK & IAQ Programmable Thermostat by S S & B Heating & Cooling, Springfield, Missouri. 

How Do I program your Focus PRO 6000 - Honeywell Thermostat

We hope you find the video below helpful.

How do I program my Honeywell VisionPRO 8000, Trane XL802, Trane XL900 Series Thermostats

We hope you find the video below helpful. 

Honeywell Thermostats
VisionPRO 8000 
Trane XL 802 Series
Trane XL 900 Series 

Why is the cost of R-22 refrigerant so high?

Over the past 2 years the price of R-22 has dramatically increased, as much as 200%. The EPA controls how much R-22 can be produced annually. The EPA reduced the amount of R-22 in 2012 by 45% with a temporary short term allocation. In March of 2013 the EPA finalized the allocations for 2013 and 2014 with an additional overall reduction of 7%. These reductions will continue until 2020 when the production of R-22 will cease. Each year there will be less R-22 produced so the costs could continue to rise.

 

Why can't you give an estimate over the phone?

There are too many details involved in providing an accurate estimate.  

What is a hybrid heating and cooling system?

A hybrid heating and cooling system, other wise know as dual fuel, is a heat pump outside combined with a gas furnace inside.  These type systems can greatly reduce utility cost, especially when heating with propane.

Why can't you give an estimate just off of square footage?

That would be an uneducated guess.  We know the correct methods of estimating and we use them at no cost to the home owner.

How often should I have my furnace and air conditioner cleaned?

With average use you should have the furnace completely serviced every fall and the air conditioner every spring.

What types of filters are best to use?

The Trane Clean Effects air cleaner is the best air filtering device available.

What do you get with a maintenance contract?

If you had a service call and had to pay for all the safety checks, testing, and cleaning, your bill would be over $250.00 per season per system and these are done each season with the purchase of our maintenance agreement.  Plus you will receive the added benefits of:

*A safe operating system                                       *Reduced repair costs if repairs are necessary

*A 15% discount on parts and labor                     *Increased comfort in your home

*24-hour priority service                                           *Lower operating costs 

*A more efficient system

Call us today for pricing on a Peak Performance Maintenance Agreement for your home.  417-866-0990

 

Can I clean and service my own equipment?

No.  Other than replacing an air filter, all other maintenance or service should be performed by a trained technician.  There are many dangerous components to any heating and cooling system.  Hazards including property damage and even death can result from untrained individuals interacting with heating and cooling system components. Be SAFE hire a professional!

What is a Manual J load calculation?

This is used to determine what size equipment a home needs.  It takes into account doors, windows, insulation, etc.  This is the only approved method of equipment sizing and should be used on all homes.

Can a heating and cooling system help reduce dust in the home?

According to research, 93% of homes have excessive duct leakage, this can increase dust entering the home.  A properly sealed duct system can help to reduce the amount of dust in the home.  A Trane Clean Effects air cleaner connected to the furnace can also help with this issue.

What should I look for when selecting a thermostat?

This is up to individual prefernce.  You can choose from a very simple on/off type of thermostat, up to a multi-programmable thermostat that can be controlled from a smart phone, tablet, PC etc.  You can pick the features that fit your lifestyle best.

How do I know what size heater or air conditioner I need?

The right way to size a furnace and air conditioner is by prefroming a manual J load calculation.  By calculating the exterior walls and windows, ceiling and floor square footage, combined with insulation values, and other factors a manual J load calculation can determine to excact size of heating and cooling system for your home.

What type of coolant is used in air conditioner currently?

The type of refrigerant or coolant used in air conditioners today is R410a.  R410a was deemed a more environmentally friendly refrigerant by the EPA, as its chemical make is less ozone depleting that R22.  The change from R22 to R410a was mandated by the EPA to take place on January 1, 2010.  After this date air conditioners were no longer able to be shipped with R22 in them.  R22 dry ship units are still available, but the manufacture of the refrigerant is mandated by the government to be reduced each year and is not to be manufactured or imported by the year 2020.

What is a whole house air cleaner?

A whole home air cleaner is an electronic filter connected to your heating and cooling system.  SS&B recommends the Trane Clean Effects air cleaner.  The Trane Clean Effects is an electronic air cleaner that is 100 times more efficient than a typical filter used in a furnace.  It helps with allergies, asthma and to improve indoor air quality.

What does an Eletronic Air Cleaner do?

Electronic Air cleaners electrically charge particles in the air and then collect those particles on plates that are charged with an opposite current.

Is it more efficient to use the heat pump rather than emergency heat?

Typically yes.  You should leave your thermostat on regular heat unless there is a problem with the heat pump.

What is variable speed?

Variable speed is a fan motor available on certin heater models that has the ability to speed up to ensure the furnace is always delivering the correct amount of air to the home.  Certain installation practices on exisiting homes result in restrictions in the duct system that reduces the amount of air a conventional system is able to deliver.  Choosing a variable speed fan will help to alleviate this problem.  Variable speed fan motors are high efficiency motors which will sometimes increase the efficiency rating of the air conditioner.  If you choose to run your heater fan continuously the variable speed fan only uses about 70 watts of electricity compared to approximately 680 on a conventional system.

Should I cover my air conditioner for the winter?

Air conditioners are built to be outdoors and do not require covers.

What is an ERV and what does it do?

An Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV) provides fresh air to the interior of a home while exhausting stale air from the home.  The two air streams cross paths through a heat exchanger to temper the incoming air which saves energy.

What kind of warranty do you offer?

Warranties vary depending on products or services.

What are the blinking lights on the furnace?

These lights indicate operations and assist in diagnosing problems that occur.

What is a wet switch?

It is an overflow safety switch.  The switch helps prevent flooding when it senses moisture and shuts the unit off.  These are especially important in units that are installed in attics!

How often should I change my furnace filters?

Filters should be changed every 3-6 months.  Depending on your home, some may have to be changed more frequently. 

Every time my furnace starts it makes a clicking sound, is that normal?

The clicking sound is most likely the spark ignitor on the furnace going through its sequence to light the furnace burners.  This IS normal.  However, if you do experience louder and more frequent noises from your heating system you should contact your repair technician.

Why does my heat pump make so much noise?

When the outdoor unit switches between heating and cooling or switches into or out of defrost, there can be a swooshing sound which is perfectly normal.

How cold should it be before I use my emergency heat?

Your system will switch over automatically if the heat pump can not keep up.  You should not have to manually switch it over.

If I have rooms in my home that are too hot or too cold does that mean my heater or air conditioner is too small?

Not always.  Hot and cold spots in a home can be air distribution issues related to the duct system.  These problems can be addressed through duct work modifications and equipment features in most cases.   A properly sized furnace and air conditioner will run a long enough cycle to help even out air temperatures in the home, so in some cases, a smaller system is actually better.

What does two stage mean?

Two stage is a term associated with furnaces, air conditioners, and heat pumps, having to do with the amount of warm or cool air the system puts out during a cycle.  A single stage unit comes on with enough power to heat or cool the homes on an extreme day regardless of the temperature outside.  A two stage or multi stage furnace or air conditioner has a lower speed it will run on for milder weather while still having the higher speed available for the extreme days.  The two stage furnace causes the units to run longer cycles resulting in more even air temperatures throughout the home, lower humidity in the summer time and quieter operations year round.  Even though the system runs longer these systems are actually more efficient which saves you energy dollars.

How do I know if I have a heat pump?

Look at your thermostat.  If it has a selection for emergency heat or auxiliary heat, you have a heat pump equipped system.

Can a whole house humidifier be connected to my HVAC system or furnace?

Yes, you have a few options for humidification in the winter time.  S S & B Heating and Cooling recommends the Aprilaire steam humidifier.  Humidifiers can keep the wood from drying out and splitting, prevent dry sinuses and static electricity as well as improve comfort in the home.

When is it recommended to have a service check performed on my heating or cooling system?

SS&B offers an annual maintenance agreement that includes two service checks.  We schedule the cooling check in the spring to clean and prepare your air conditioner for summer usage.  A heating checked is done in the fall to prepare your furnace for winter usage.  While we recommend and schedule these checks at these times, servicing your equipment can be scheduled at your convenience throughout the year.

What are some preventative maintenance tips I should be aware of?

While we recommend having your equipment serviced on a regular basis by a professionally trained technician, there are some things that you can do on your own to help maintain your equipment.

1) Replace or wash your filters regularly.

2) Keep all vents and registers clean, clear and open.  Do not close them or cover them. 

3) Make sure that the equipment is clear and free of obstructions.  Do not cover the air conditioner.  Do not place items next to your furnace.

I was told I need to replace my evaporator coil because it has a leak. Is this normal?

Unfortunately, it is a common issue.  While a technician might be able to repair some leaks, the conditions that cause these leaks have usually already weakened and corroded other components, often making the cost of the attempted repair a waste.  When an evaporator coil has a leak, we recommend replacement of that coil.

I had to add refrigerant to my unit last summer. Should I add it again this year?

An air conditioner or heat pump is designed as a closed system and should not leak refrigerant.  Refrigerant leaks should be located and repaired if possible. 

 

Do you offer free estimates?

Yes, we offer free in home estimates for residential replacement.  We can set an appointment and design a system for you, based upon your particular comfort concerns.

How long can I expect a new system to last?

The average life of a heating and cooling system can be 10-15 years.  Regular maintenance can help prolong the effciency and life expectancy of your system.

How do I select the right heating and cooling system?

A new heating and cooling system will be one of the biggest household purchases you will make.  Your HVAC dealer should evaluate your home and ask about your comfort concerns to create a customized system for your home.  The manufacturer and dealer should both have a solid reputation for providing products and services.

Why should I replace my heating and air conditioning system?

Replacing aging equipment can benefit you several ways-taking advantages of rebates and credits that are available; improving the energy efficiency of your home and improving comfort and safety for your family.

What is the best thermostat to use with my system?

Digital thermostats offer screens that are easier to read and controls that are more responsive.  Programmable digital thermostats can be pre-set for every day of the week to match your schedule and avoid high energy swings as you enter and exit your home.

Should I be concerned about indoor air quality?

Indoor air quality can affect your health and comfort.  Reducing moisture in the home through dehumidification, or improving your air filtration are two examples of addressing air quality issues.  Your HVAC provider can help you identify any comfort concerns about your home.

I need a new unit-what is the best HVAC equipment/brand?

Most equipment has the same basic components.  The difference will be the company installing that equipment.  S S & B Heating & Cooling has been in business since 1969 and is fully licensed and insured.  Our professionally trained employees will ensure that your new system is tailor fit to your specific HVAC needs.

Should I replace my furnace and air conditioner with a heat pump?

Heat pumps work best in moderate climates, with average winter temperatures of 30-50 degrees Fahrenheit.  When the air temperature is colder there is less heat from the outside air to pull inside and then the heat pump is not as effective, requiring the use of auxiliary heat.  Southwest Missouri is a good location for heat pump usage, based on average weather conditions.

How do you size the air conditioning for the house?

Because every home is different, our comfort consultant will thoroughly measure and analyze your home and ask about your particular comfort concerns.  S S & B Heating & Cooling perform a Manual J Load Calculation to accurately determine the proper size unit for your home.

How much will a new system cost?

Unfortunately, it is impossible to accurately determine cost without first coming to your home to take measurements.  We can set an appointment for a free in home estimate and design a system that is right for you.

 

What is a heat pump?

Heat pumps function as both air conditioners and heaters, depending on weather conditions.  In winter, a heat pump extracts heat from the outside air and brings it inside.  In summer, it pulls heat from the inside air and takes it outside.  Because they don't make heat, only move it, heat pumps use less electricity and give a bigger result for the energy they use.

What warranty will my new system have?

SS&B has a lifetime guaranty on workmanship.  We are a Trane dealer and with the exception of R-22 condensers, begining January 1st 2012 all Trane residential products have a 10 year parts warranty.

What is the condensing unit?

The condensing unit is another name for an air conditioner or heat pump.

What is a compressor?

The compressor is the motor inside an air conditioner or heat pump that pumps refrigerant to and from the evaporator coil located in the home to make the heating and cooling process possible.

Can my furnace and air conditioner be controlled remotely from a computer or smart phone?

There are multiple options to control your heating and cooling system remotely.  S S & B Heating & Cooling recommends the ComfortLink and ComfortLink2 thermostats from Trane.  Each thermostat carries a unique set of options including HVAC system control as well as options for controlling cameras, lights, and even door locks from remote locations.  

Do I have to repair a leak in my air conditioner?

The leak repair regulations do not apply to refrigeration and air conditioning equipment that contains charges of less than 50 pounds.

Read more here:

http://www.epa.gov/ozone/title6/608/608fact.html#leaks

 

What is a programmable thermostat?

A programmable thermostat has the capability of automatically changing the temperature at different times of the day.  This can save you energy dollars if you are away from your home at set times throughout the day by adjusting the temperature while you are away.  It can also be convenient if you like to have a different temperature while you sleep than when you are awake.  City Utilities of Springfield currently offers rebates on programmable thermostats.  

 http://www.cityutilities.net/conserve/res_pgms.htm

What is a load calculation and why do I need it?

The load calculation measures your home's square footage, the number of rooms and windows, the amount of insulation, etc.  We then use that information to properly calculate the correct size heating and cooling load necessary to keep you comfortable and energy efficient.

What is carbon monoxide?

Carbon monoxide is an odorless toxic gas.  It is a general by-product of combustion and can be produced by faulty gas appliances in your home, such as a furnace, oven or fireplace.

 

 

 

What does short cycling mean?

This is the starting and stopping of the system in a shorter time period than normal.  This usually indicates that the system is having a problem or is oversized.

What is a zoning system?

This is a method of dividing up the home into different comfort zones and being able to control each area individually based on comfort and need.

If I have a part replaced on my system, what kind of warranty do you offer?

S S & B offers a 30-day warranty on our labor.  Most manufacturers offer a 1-year warranty on the parts.

What is a hot surface ignitor?

A hot surface ignitor is a small ignition device that allows the furnace to start up.  The ignitor has replaced the standing pilot light system, found in most older furnaces.

Should I have a carbon monoxide detector in my home?

Yes. According to the National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM), every home should have one or more carbon monoxide detectors.

 

 

What is a CFM?

Cubic Feet per Minute of air flow.

What does BTUH stand for?

British Thermal Units per hour.

What is a heat exchanger?

Built inside your gas furnace, the heat exchanger is a large aluminized steel or stainless steel chamber that facilitates the transfer of heat energy from the source to the air that is forced through the duct system. 

What is a floor furnace?

A floor furnace is a heating system installed below a floor.  Heat is dispersed at the floor register into the home.  Used mostly in older homes because they do not require ductwork.  Most will work during a power outage.

What does BTU stand for?

British Thermal Unit

What is an electronic air cleaner?

Electronic air cleaners are used inside HVAC systems in your home.  As air moves through the cleaner, it passes through a filter and then through electrically charged cells that draw in airborne particles.  They are more effective than a standard 1" filter at removing pollen, mold, pet dander, dirt, and dust.

Should I have my duct work sealed?

Leaking duct work can lead to higher utility bills, stuffy, dusty and uncomfortable rooms.  Read more here from Energy Star and the EPA:

http://www.polysealinsulation.com/commonfiles/pdfs/ductsealingbrochure04.pdf

 

What does SEER rating mean?

SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating.  It refers to the efficiency level of your air conditioner or heat pump-the higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the unit.  The minimum SEER is 13 on new units.

Why does my house have only one furnace and my neighbor has two?

Many factors lead to the design of a heating and cooling system for a home such as home design, size, and budget.

Typically small, single-level, homes will have a single system, while a larger home or homes with multiple floors or a long foot print might need multiple systems.

Each home is different and careful consideration should be taken to ensure maximum comfort and efficiency to the home owner once construction is complete.

If you are considering building a new home include a heating and cooling contractor up front and work together to design a system that fulfills your needs and wishes.

What is the difference between a humidifier and a de-humidifier? How do I know which one I need for my home?

A humidifier adds moisture to the air in your home, usually used during the winter when the air is drier.  A dehumidifier removes moisture from the air and is usually used during the summer when the air is more moist or humid.

What is the best heating and air conditioner?

To have a trained professional evaluate your home and concerns, do I have hot or cold spots in my home, is my ductwork properly sized or insulated, and sealed, what is my budget. Trane makes many air conditioners to make your home more comfortable. 

How long should a heating and cooling system last?

The typical life span of a system is 12 to 15 years.  However, if a system is improperly sized, installed, or serviced it may be necessary to replace it sooner.

How much time does a replacement bid take for my heating and air conditioning system?

When it is time to have your HVAC system replaced you should allow ample time to meet with a comfort consultant. One hour is not enough time to measure the home, run a load calculation, discuss your wants and needs, and to go over the many options now available. Typically you should allow two to three hours time. More for larger homes or homes with multiple systems.