What to expect during a Stramowski Tune-Up
Subtitle: My name is Kyle, I am a 11-year, service technician with Stramowski Heating. I am a Lead Service Tech, overseeing all of our service department technicians. What a homeowner can expect from a Stramowski Heating Tune-Up, is an initial phone call prior to arrival from the service technician to give them an estimated time of when we're going to arrive. When we arrive, we'll greet you at the door. Ask you questions about how your systems been operating, what they feel comfortable with, any issues they may be having with the system, so we can address those, so they're comfortable with their system. One of the first things I like to check is the air filter. The airflow is key to a properly operating system. I'll start downstairs in the basement initially, checking that air filter, checking blower speeds, making sure that dampers in the basement are open, that airflow is going to be a key factor in distributing that cool air or warm air in the summer, or the winter as well. I'll start by initially then setting up some of my meters downstairs that are going to take temperatures. I also like to check the draining system. A lot of people don't realize that not only does an air conditioner cool, it also dehumidifies. That humidity will actually go to a drain fitting, to a drain line, and then down to your drain in your basement. Checking that, making sure there's no obstructions in those drain lines. If for any reason, people are experiencing water in their basement, a lot of the times it's because of a drain fitting or a drain line that's obstructed, that could be cleared out and allow that water to flow properly. I then usually go to the outdoor unit, opening up the electrical panel, and doing a visual inspection. Making sure that mice, rodents, bugs, haven't got in over the offseason and cause any damage. After the visual inspection, I generally start checking electrical components. Whether it's a contactor, capacitor, some units do have circuit boards in the outdoor unit as well too. Checking refrigerant levels and pressures, which is going to be key to a properly, operating system. We do occasionally, find that systems are low on refrigerant. Generally, that's the cause of a leak. We do address that by adding refrigerant, getting the system to proper pressures, and then recommending a leak search. If the system seems to be operating fine, pressures are good and refrigerant levels are correct, I then go back downstairs, proceed to do a temperature drop reading which is measuring the return air coming back versus the supply that you feel coming out of your vents. There is going to be a difference generally about 15 to 20 degrees on average from what's coming back to what you feel coming out of your vents. After the electrical is all inspected, checked, and pressures, refrigerant levels are correct, I will then shut the unit off and clean the outdoor condenser coil. As I stated before, with proper airflow indoors, it's also key for proper airflow outdoors. Outdoor unit doesn't have an air filter. Any dirt or debris will accumulate on the outdoor condenser coil. So we like to use a detergent, rinse the unit off, put that detergent onto the coil, let it sit for usually 5-10 minutes, let it soak in, and really do its job, break down any dirt and debris. After that, we rinse the outdoor unit off and then proceeded to start the system back up to ensure proper operation. By having Stramowski Heating come out and perform a maintenance tune-up on your air conditioner, definitely improves the performance of it. A lot of things that can be found and corrected prior to having an issue can be caught and corrected. I would say about 50 percent of service calls that we have could probably be prevented from regular annual maintenance. Anywhere from electrical components, that could be tested prior to failing, and having them replaced, to a dirty air filter that can cause a system not to operate efficiently, or sometimes even shut the system down completely. So, having maintenance done, is definitely something that can prevent a lot of issues and catch them before they become an issue, where you don't have air conditioning. What a homeowner can expect after the tune-up is complete, is a full detailed, invoice of everything we did that particular day. So they can expect to receive a full copy of all the data from that day. One thing that I believe sets us apart from some of our competition is not only being professional, but also building a relationship with the homeowner, not just coming in and doing a job and leaving, but making sure that the homeowner understands how their system is operating the best that they can, and have a better understanding of what to expect from us if they experience an issue in the future and someone that they can call and trust that we're going to do the job and do it correct.
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