What Is BTU, and What Home Considerations Should You Make Before Purchasing a Heating System? Advice From Your Heating and AC Repair Professional

What Is BTU, and What Home Considerations Should You Make Before Purchasing a Heating System? Advice From Your Heating and AC Repair Professional

Knowing all the heating and cooling industry systems is challenging for a homeowner. This is because it is consistently growing thanks to the advancement in technology. Therefore, to safely navigate the heating and cooling systems available in the market, it is best to have a reliable heating and AC repair technician to explain what you need for your home. Since most homeowners constantly change how they cool or heat their homes, this article will dig deep into the BTU.

What Is a BTU? 

A BTU, also known as a British Thermal Unit, is a measurement unit of heat that is expressed in energy. Generally, a BTU is a heat your home needs to raise a gallon of water by one degree Fahrenheit. Therefore, during heating, this refers to the energy a heat pump uses to warn your home. During cooling, this is the heat pump’s capacity to remove a unit of energy from your home. 

Therefore, when searching for a method to heat or cool your home, identifying your home’s BTU requirement is the most important thing. However, since this is a complicated process, it is best to consult a professional heating and AC repair technician. The technician is well equipped and skilled to calculate your home’s BTU efficiently. 

Factors Affecting Your Home’s BTU

Knowing the BTU for your home is essential when looking for a new heating and cooling system. The BTU will influence how fast or slow the heating system will achieve your home’s set temperature. Therefore, by knowing your home’s BTU, you will purchase an efficient system, thus lowering energy use and saving money. Some of the factors that affect the BTU include; 

Square Footage 

Your home’s size in terms of the square footage that a heating or cooling system needs to condition your home’s air. For example, if your home covers extensive square footage, the temperature control system you purchase has a high BTU. Usually, a heating and cooling system should have 20 BTU for every square foot of your home. Therefore, when choosing a heating and cooling system, ensure you check the BTU rating and that it suits your home space. 

Ceiling Height

The ceiling height is the other factor that will impact the choice of your heating and cooling system and its BTU capacity to heat or cool your home. For example, if your home has high ceilings, the heating and cooling system will need a higher BTU than that with lower ceilings. This is because the ceiling increases the space that the heating and cooling system needs to air condition by increasing the height. Therefore, when considering the length and width of your home, consider the size of the rooms you need to be heated or cooled. To efficiently calculate your home’s required BTU, multiply the room’s width, length, and height.

The number you get will be ideal for calculating the BTU needed for your home. However, a heating and AC repair and installation technician is better equipped to calculate your home’s BTU. The technician will take the measurements and provide you with the exact number to look for.  However, it is essential to note that different rooms in your home will have different BTU requirements depending on the room size. Therefore, a skilled technician will consider all these factors when outlining your home’s BTU requirement. 

Environmental Temperature

Your home’s location and outdoor temperature are other factors that dictate how many BTUs an ideal heating and air conditioning system should have. Since the outdoor temperature influences the average temperature of your home, it is also advisable to consider it. For example, homeowners in extreme climates require higher heating and air conditioning systems with a higher BTU number than those in moderate temperatures. 

This is because the heating and air conditioning system will need to raise the temperature in their houses too much from the extremely low temperatures outside or lower them so far from the extreme heat outdoors. However, for those in moderate climates, the system’s BTU only depends on the internal factors of the home, which are square footage and ceiling height. 

Your Home’s Insulation 

Your home’s insulation isolates it from external environmental factors such as wind that can compromise your home’s temperature. Similarly, how well or poorly your home’s insulation condition impacts the BTU of the HVAC system you should choose. A well-insulated home retains the heat generated by a heating system and the cool air from the air conditioner, which is highly efficient.

On the other hand, a poorly insulated home loses the conditioned air to the environment, which strains the system. Therefore, when looking for an HVAC system, it is best to consider your home’s insulation before settling on one. A heating and AC repair specialist will advise on the best system after investigating the condition of your home’s insulation. 

Personal Preference 

Your preference is another factor to remember when searching for a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system. The primary purpose of having an HVAC system in your home is to make it as comfortable as possible. Therefore, if you like your home chilly and comfortably warm all the time, find a system that suits these needs. 

You can also segment your home into zones which will help you achieve the temperature needs of everyone in your home. However, it is essential to note that selecting an HVAC system with many BTUs will result in energy wastage and an increase in your monthly bill. On the other hand, an HVAC system with fewer BTUs will be ineffective in heating or cooling your home, thus straining the system. This will also lead to unnecessary breakdowns and repairs, which can be avoided. Therefore, choose the correct BTU for your home for maximum comfort. 

We Can Help

Do you need to know how many BTUs your ideal HVAC system needs? Contact us at Minuteman Heating and Air for advice. 

See our most recent blog on this topic here.

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10 Problems for Your Heating and AC Repair Service

10 Problems for Your Heating and AC Repair Service

Your heating and cooling unit plays a role in the comfort of your home, especially during extreme weather conditions. To get the most out of your unit, you need to ensure every component is running at its peak. At Minuteman Heat and Air, customers are encouraged to schedule regular inspection and maintenance services to troubleshoot and repair the unit.

During an inspection, the HVAC expert checks for signs of wear and tear while running diagnostics to find issues with your air conditioner. With the help of a professional, you can efficiently address the problem and find a lasting solution. However, not many people know the issues associated with heating and AC units.

Common HVAC Problems

Your AC is built to serve you for at least ten years before calling a heating and AC repair expert for major issues or replacement. In this period, most damage is managed through servicing and preventive maintenance. Below are common problems you will likely face with your HVAC unit:

Dirty and Clogged Filters

Your HVAC unit serves more than balancing indoor temperature; it also works to improve indoor air quality. Each unit has air filters to remove allergens such as dust and mold from getting into your air circulation. Some models come with disposable filters, while others have washable and reusable filters.

Over time, these filters get clogged, which interferes with the efficiency of your AC. In some cases, you may end up dealing with increased dust particles, affecting your comfort. However, this issue is easily addressed by regularly inspecting and cleaning your filters.

Aside from increasing the quality of air, a clean filter enhances your unit’s performance as it facilitates better circulation. A clogged filter may result in your heating and AC unit overheating, leading to expensive repairs. Have a heating and AC repair expert check your filters regularly to ensure your AC runs efficiently.

Thermostat Malfunction

In the modern era of smart homes, people are fitting their homes with thermostats to help control their HVAC system from a central location. When your HVAC system is not responding to the commands set in the thermostat or your system’s control panel is defective, you should consider contacting your HVAC expert.

These professionals are trained to handle programmable and non-programmable systems, meaning they can easily diagnose and address the issue in no time. While some people may consider this issue a DIY problem, it’s best to have a professional check the system to find the cause and offer a lasting solution.

Water Leaks

Your cooling unit draws excess moisture from the air before condensing at releasing the reminder to provide a cooling effect. Some units are also equipped with coolants to help regulate temperature. After a given period, it’s normal to have a few leaks, which are easily fixed during preventive maintenance.

However, dealing with excessive leakage could indicate a need for heating and AC repair. In this case, you may be dealing with a damaged drain or clogged condensate line. Repairing or unclogging your condensate line goes beyond the usual ducting and filling. You need a thorough inspection to find the root cause of the leak before working on it. Plumbers at Minuteman Heating and Air recommend you leave this job for the experts. This way, they can ascertain the level of damage and advise you accordingly.

Your AC Is Blowing Hot or Warm Air

Your HVAC unit producing hot or warm air on a cold night or during winter is something normal. You can only lower the temperature based on your preference. However, homeowners have often had to deal with their units producing hot air during summer which is the opposite of the intended purpose. The first thing you do when you notice this is to check your thermostat and ensure your settings are correct.

Multiple reasons, including a thermostat malfunction, a damaged condenser, or clogged filters, cause your AC to blow hot air. A clogged filter often results in a frozen coil, interfering with your unit’s ability to convert the hot vapor into a condensate. The AC repair technician will also check the unit’s condenser for a chilly and wet feel and refrigerant levels to get a definitive answer before working on a solution.

Uneven Temperature Distribution

An AC works to regulate the temperature in your home. However, this depends on the type of unit installed and the number of rooms covered. Properties using a centralized system can enjoy the benefits of the HVAC unit in any room. Over time, one of the complaints experts at Minuteman Heating and Air have received includes uneven temperature distribution. This means some sections may be warm while other is cool depending on the prevailing conditions.

One of the best solutions to this issue is adding dampers to help regulate your HVAC system. This feature works to ensure equal distribution of air throughout the room.

Loud Air Conditioner

Your AC is designed to work seamlessly without interfering with your comfort. In normal cases, you shouldn’t hear your system running. However, loud sounds from your AC unit could be a sign of a mechanical problem, forcing your system to work overtime to cool or heat your building.

ACs produce several sounds to mean different things, making it difficult for an untrained person to pinpoint the issue. Some sounds include a screeching sound from a defective belt and a rattling noise from a damaged fan, motor, or compressor. Immediately you hear these sounds, call a reliable heating and AC repair expert to find the cause and solution to the strange noises.

Regular maintenance and servicing help you deal with small HVAC problems and prevent premature wear and tear. Taking proper care of your unit will not only boost its performance but also extend its life span. Hiring a professional to provide lasting solutions is the best way to avoid these problems. At Minuteman Heating and Air, we pride ourselves on the best HVAC services. Call us for any HVAC service, including emergency services.

See our most recent blog on this topic here.

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Understanding Mixed Heat Pumps and How They Work from Your Air Conditioner Repair Professionals

Understanding Mixed Heat Pumps and How They Work from Your Air Conditioner Repair Professionals

There are several types of air-source heat pumps that you can use in your home, depending on whether you have used ductwork. If you have installed ductwork in your home, an Air conditioner repair professional will help you establish a ducted heat pump. If you have no ductwork, then a ductless heat pump is suitable, also referred to as a mini-split system. This article will cover what you need to know regarding heat pumps and help you make a valuable decision that will leave your home comfortable. You will realize that the various types of pumps are cost-effective, have a low carbon footprint, and are highly efficient for your daily heating and cooling needs.

What Is a Mixed Heat Pump?

Your house is either installed with ductwork or you use mini-split units. However, if you have both, you need a more comfortable heat pump that will efficiently cater to your home. A heating pump that will serve you by combining both ducted and ductless heat pumps is referred to as a mixed heat pump.

How Mixed Heat Pumps Work

Air-source heat pumps efficiently absorb free heat, which heats and cools your home. Like ducted and ductless heat pumps, they use electricity and can easily compare to regular AC systems. In most cases, mixed heat pumps function like two individual AC systems. Simply put, two condensers on the outside will run independently and directly connected to different ones on the inside. These condensers connect to ductless mini splits in your home, and the other is attached to the central air handler, which controls the heating and cooling between the ductwork. You may use up to three condensers if you have a large home, while other systems only require one.


You will need a quotation from the Air conditioner repair company as the prices will vary depending on your home. Mixed heat pump systems are not far-fetched from the ducted or ductless setups, but if your home has half ductwork, a mixed heat system is a more cost-effective option. You get to use the existing ductwork, which saves you money. It is less hassle and consumes less time than establishing new ductwork.

Even if you prioritize sustainability, efficiency, and emission reduction, mixed heat pumps will indirectly save you energy costs since they have been optimized for more than one air handler. Technological advances have shown that these heat pumps are efficient over various temperatures and have been improved for heating and cooling, which is desirable. A foolproof way to efficiently and cost-effectively implement heat pump installation is by proper technical and financial planning ahead of time. The plan will involve an Air conditioner repair company to include cost analysis, the energy you’re expected to use, and simulate performance and monitoring over time.

When Do Mixed Heat Pumps Qualify for Installation in Your Home?

Ductwork Condition

If you have a laid out complete ductwork in your home, but it does not function as you would like, airflow does not circulate in every room, or it is partially installed and does not reach all the room, then you will want to consider budgeting for a mixed heat pump. Mixed heat pumps are not ideal for your home if you already have an unbeatable ductwork installation that translates to no hot or cold areas. A ducted heat pump is suitable in such a scenario to substitute your furnace and AC unit. In addition, if you have no ductwork, your house’s AC system will serve you best if you install a ductless mini-split system entirely. A home that is fully ducted but some of the rooms have poor airflow gives you the choice of improving the design of the existing ductwork to ensure better and more comfortable heating and cooling or adding some mini splits.

Home Expansion

Change is bound to happen even to structural components that look permanent. You can add an extra room or convert your garage into a storage unit, or the basement finishing could be done. Either way, when the AC unit does not keep up with your valuable changes, adding several ductless mini-split units is a more realistic way to get comfort and airflow to your new spaces.

Steps Taken Before Installing a Mixed Heat Pump

Ensure you find an Air conditioner repair company with experience and a good reputation, and if they offer more than one system, be sure they are experienced in both ducted and ductless heat pumps. Make sure you ask all your questions when shopping for air-source heat pumps and explain your unit needs to the personnel. Get your home reviewed so experts can assess the existing ductwork, layout, and any problems that could arise during installation. An in-home consultation will help you fine-tune your setup, configuration, and design.

How to Improve the Efficiency of Your Heat Pump

Energy Audit

To ensure that your mixed heat pump is functioning and delivering optimally, see that you get an energy audit in your home. At the same time, you should only allow this assessment to be carried out by an experienced professional as they have the expertise to point out efficient and comfortable configurations. An energy assessment is necessary to recommend improvements to optimize your mixed heat pump, improve efficiency and save on electric bills. In addition, energy assessment may be a requirement by law that can help reduce costs in the form of fines and make you qualify for significant efficiency upgrades, incentives, and rebates.

Solar Energy

As power from renewable energy expands, reducing your carbon footprint could be the market leader for efficiency. Consider using solar energy to power your heat pumps, as this can reduce your electric dependence and utility bills.

Comfortably Cool Heat Your Home With Mixed Heat Pumps

Your home should be your pride and the most comfortable place. Do you want a mixed heat pump installation, maintenance, or repair service? Contact us at Minuteman Heating and Air to book an appointment. 

See our most recent blog on this topic here.

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Features To Consider When Choosing a Gas Furnace Explained by Your Seasoned Heating and AC Repair Technician

Features To Consider When Choosing a Gas Furnace Explained by Your Seasoned Heating and AC Repair Technician

With modern technology so far ahead of its time, new gas furnaces should not leave you in the cold. The inefficient, old-fashioned furnaces of the past differ from the new ones that possess new and unrivaled features. Therefore, if you need to replace your old furnace or a decision about gas furnaces, this article will hold your hand through the tedious process and enlighten you on the features you need to look for. Although the cost of these new gas furnaces may be high, you are not to be discouraged as an experienced heating and AC repair technician will argue that this saves you a substantial amount of energy bills and the value of your system over time.

How Does a Furnace Work?

A furnace is a system that works as a heater when a room or house is cold and provides heat to the entire room. A furnace is connected to a fan that draws in cool air from the outside. The cold air then passes through the burners, which heat it. Consequently, hot air is blown into the ductwork by blowers, ensuring that the warm air is evenly distributed. Therefore, a heating and AC repair technician recommends considering some of these features when looking for a gas furnace. They include:

The System of Ignition

Most machines’ functionality depends on whether the machine can start when switched on. A gas furnace is also a typical machine whose functions start with ignition. The ignition system creates the spark that ignites the gas in the furnace. In most older furnaces, the ignition system is quite different. The burners are signaled to light by a continuous flame, commonly known as a pilot light. Most newer furnaces have the silicon carbide ignition system, while others have the nitride hot surface ignitor, which is advantageous because it can last longer. You will find that some of them have warranties that last a lifetime. These new ignition systems are responsible for the increased efficiency in furnaces with higher ratings.

Furnace Blower With a Variable Speed

A furnace is connected to a blower fan, also known as the air handler, that takes cold air and passes it through the burner, where heating is done. The blower fan then blows the resulting hot or cold into the ductwork. The repeating process, in turn, warms up your room or house. The furnace must regulate the air coming into the blower fan, especially when less heat is needed. It is this necessity that requires the use of a variable-speed furnace blower. It is made more efficient by incorporating variable-speed motors.

A variable-speed air handler runs continuously in low-speed movements, making less noise and only increasing the speed once the AC system requires more power. This is opposed to traditional furnace blowers, which work by running continuously at full speed. Furnaces with variable-speed blowers feature will give you better temperature control, eliminating cold and hot zones and increasing the system’s energy efficiency.

Ability to Filter Air

To keep chronic lung diseases at bay like asthma, a heating and AC repair technician will ensure that air filtration is one of the most efficient features in your AC system. Most traditional furnaces have a motor that uses brushes to communicate electrical signals. It means that these furnaces’ filtration systems will not run continuously as opposed to those with an air-filtration feature. Modern furnaces incorporate an electronic filter that uses electrical charges to assist in cutting off dust particles and other unwanted substances. In other cases, a furnace is fitted with a high-efficiency particulate-arresting filter or HEPA. In turn, you reduce the amount of dust coming into your heating system.

A High Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency

All furnaces must have an Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating (AFUE rating) to measure energy consumption. A set legal minimum rating is allowed by law for all new furnaces. Environmental Protection Agency gives some furnaces energy star certification, giving them a higher AFUE rating.

Furnaces with a standard efficiency have a moderately high AFUE rating. Their initial purchase is lower but has a high operational cost, and they do not get tax credits. The furnaces with a high AFUE rating are equipped with high efficiency, although their price is relatively high. However, these furnaces will save enormous fuel prices over time, have state-of-the-art features, and get tax credits.


Since the cost of furnace blowers is quite high, you should check the warranty coverage and ensure it covers your furnace blower’s most important accessories. Different companies have different types of warrants; while some cover only a short time, some cover up to a lifetime of specific furnace accessories. Be advised to only deal with respectable dealers.

Furnace Blower with a Variable Heat Output

Comparing a fixed-heat output furnace to a variable heat output furnace is unfair. Like a variable-speed blower, if a furnace has a feature that lets you control the output heat, the furnace will be very efficient and comfortable. It does not require the furnace to shut down completely, which will most likely compromise your temperature regulation. Since the heat from the furnace automatically changes from one level to another, variable heat output will give the furnace the ability to turn heat on or off continuously. 

With fixed heat output, such an advantage is not available, and while these operate at full capacity all through, regulated furnaces always perform optimally. The output regulation feature is supported by a modulating valve that opens and closes according to how you want the surrounding temperature to adjust. A heating and AC repair technician will recommend that this be coupled with the variable-speed blower for maximum efficiency.

We Can Help

Are you looking to purchase a gas furnace? You should consider beneficial features such as energy efficiency and whether the unit has warranties. Do you need help choosing one? Contact our seasoned technicians at Minuteman Heating and Air for advice and consultations.

See our most recent blog on this topic here.

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8 Things to Look At When Hiring a Heating and AC Repair Service

8 Things to Look At When Hiring a Heating and AC Repair Service

When your heating and AC start running into problems, it will likely lose energy efficiency, impacting your home comfort or interrupting business operations. This is when you need to call a technician to fix the air conditioner. However, not every other technician in the street can troubleshoot and fix your system. If your HVAC technician is not adequately trained and licensed, several things go wrong. Before hiring, understand the qualities to look for in an HVAC repair service. The following are 8 things to consider when choosing a heating and AC Repair service.

Right training and tools

A heating or AC repair service with a well-trained workforce and the right tools can guarantee the best repair for your AC system. Technology has evolved tremendously, and ACs have not been left out. With the emergence of new and more complex makes and models, the right technician should have the necessary training and equipment to handle the task effectively. More importantly, confirm whether the technician specializes in repairing the AC model in your home or business.

Licensing and insurance

Unqualified HVAC technicians operate without the required licensing, insurance, and bonding. Although they offer lower rates than legitimate technicians, their services are always below par. You have little recourse in case of poor servicing, and any mistakes they make will likely void your warranty. Protect your home or business by working with a licensed and insured repair service. If the technician gets injured or makes a mistake that damages your property, you will have peace of mind knowing their insurance policies cover the expenses.

Experience and expertise

An AC repair company that has long been fixing similar issues as yours will deliver a better service than a novice technician. They will leverage their experience and expertise to repair your AC promptly and efficiently. Additional vast experience and long years of operation also add to the company’s credibility.

High level of professionalism

How a company treats its prospective customers reveal their professionalism and work approach. Choose a professional agency with trained technicians who understand how to deal with customer issues. Professionals take time to listen to your issues calmly before suggesting well-suited solutions. They should be polite, compassionate, and professional on calls. Professionals also are transparent when sharing price and procedure details. Check a company’s online reviews and customer testimonials to determine their previous record regarding customer service.

Warranties and guarantees

A heating and AC repair service should stand behind its work and offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Should the problems with your AC system recur or persists in the near future, a warranty entitles you to further assistance with no extra charges. A company that offers a warranty and guarantees trust their expertise in repairing the AC the first time.

Emergency service

In Texas, going without an AC during the hot summer months can genuinely be an emergency. Unfortunately, your AC system can malfunction without warning, even in the dead of the night. If this happens, the ensuing harsh weather conditions will likely expose you and your family to untold discomfort. That is why you need to choose a heating and AC repair service that offers 24/7 emergency services. This way, you will sleep easy knowing expert help is only a call away if your AC system stops working.

Spare parts

Quality spare parts play an integral role in ensuring the repaired system performs optimally for a long. You should therefore check with the company you are hiring whether they use original parts or counterfeits. Opting for high-quality spare parts is always advisable, as cheap parts tend to develop problems that could harm your AC’s performance. In a nutshell, don’t be tempted to use counterfeit spares to save some quick bucks. You will likely spend more on recurring repairs soon after.

Transparent estimates

The right heating and AC repair service should offer transparent pricing regarding their services. If a company is quick to offer detailed written estimates, it is a good sign you are dealing with professionals. The written estimate should break down the costs that add up to the quote.

What are the signs you need a professional AC repair service?

If you see any of the following warning signs, you likely need a repair service:

  • Warm air: If you perceive warm air blowing out of your home vents, check the thermostat and adjust the cooling mode appropriately. If the problem persists, there is something wrong with your unit. Call a professional technician to fix it.
  • Insufficient airflow: Poor airflow is a sign your AC has a blockage that prevents air from moving through the home’s ductwork. It could also be a sign of a broken motor, a clogged air filter, or a more severe fault. Call an expert to inspect the unit and resolve the issue.
  • Frequent cycles: An efficient AC system should go through a relatively routine cooling cycle regardless of the temperature extremities. Although it’s expected for the cooling system to operate more often on extremely hot days, it should not repeatedly turn on and off in short intervals. If you notice frequent cycles, contact experts to check the system.
  • High humidity: During spring and summer, expect sticky weather outdoors. However, these elements should not be present indoors since the AC is designed to automatically moderate humidity levels. If the humidity in your surroundings is high, it indicates that your cooling system is unable to maintain moisture levels within a comfortable range. Have a professional diagnose the issue and rectify the fault.

Contact Minuteman Heating and Air for quick and efficient AC repairs.

As warm summer months beckon, you must ensure your AC is prepared to keep you cool. If you are experiencing issues with your system, hire a professional repair service to fine-tune the unit. Minuteman Heating and Air licensed and insured technicians leverage their vast experience and training to diagnose AC issues and fix them promptly. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

See our most recent blog on this topic here.

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