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Here’s what you should know about ductless AC systems

Too many homeowners here in Fresno, think that their cooling and heating options are limited to a traditional air conditioner, with the usual ductwork. That’s just not true anymore: with a ductless AC system professionally installed by Allbritten, you can get great indoor comfort without the need for a major home renovation.

Pictured: A ductless AC system requires no existing ductwork, making it an ideal choice for homes without this network of ducts.

A ductless AC system requires no existing ductwork, making it an ideal choice for homes without this network of ducts.

Here’s the best part: Allbritten offers free in-home estimates on new systems here in Fresno. Call us to get started, or to run your questions past our team of friendly experts.

What is a ductless AC system?

A ductless heating and cooling system does not use ductwork to deliver hot or cold air into the home through vents in the floor or ceiling. Rather, a unit is installed in a room (typically, wall-mounted) and then connected to a compressor outside.

Here are just some of the reasons a ductless AC might be right for your home:

  • You have a historic home with no existing ductwork for a traditional air conditioning system.
  • You’re adding a room to your home and don’t want to run ductwork to it.
  • You want to turn a garage, sunroom, or workspace into a useable space in the summer.
  • You have multiple family members feuding over temperatures in the home.

If any of these are true, call Allbritten for a free in-home estimate.

Installation

In each room selected for ductless HVAC, a unit is installed on the wall, in the floor, or recessed in the ceiling. It is connected to an outdoor compressor through a small, unobtrusive hole.

Refrigerant is pumped from the compressor to that room. If a heat pump and an inverter are installed in the outdoor unit, then heat can be delivered to the room as well.

Energy-efficiency

Much of the energy lost by traditional HVAC systems is from poorly insulated ductwork and the compressor constantly turning on and off. In contrast, ductless systems slow down and speed up without ever fully stopping, and there’s no ducts for heated or cooled air to travel through on the way to the living spaces in your home.

Due to this efficient operation, homeowners can save anywhere from 25 to 50 percent in heating and cooling costs. Plus, the installation of the unit may qualify you for federal tax credits and local rebates. For more about this, contact us here at Allbritten.

Other considerations

Ductless systems will save you money in the long run. The units do require maintenance, typically removing the filters and cleaning them on a regular basis. However, that’s true for all AC systems: ideally, you should schedule an annual tune-up to keep the unit running right.

If properly maintained by certified HVAC technicians, your ductless system should last. That’s especially true for the Carrier systems we install here at Allbritten.

Your next steps

Once you’ve made the decision to go with ductless AC system, your next step is to get in touch with us here at Allbritten. We’re air conditioning installation experts here in Fresno and the Central Valley, and our team has the experience to match your home to the best system for you and your family.

To learn more about ductless AC units, or to get your free in-home estimate, call us today!

Here’s how tankless water heaters work

By now, you’ve probably heard about some of your friends and family investing in something for their home called a “tankless water heater.” Also known as a “Demand-Type Water Heater,” these systems are becoming increasingly popular with Fresno and Central Valley homeowners.

In this blog, we’ll explore the reasons why more and more local homeowners are making the switch to tankless systems. To learn more, or to make the switch yourself, contact Allbritten! We’re your local plumbing experts! (559) 292-4919

An endless hot water supply

Tankless water heaters, as the name suggests, do not have a tank in which they store hot water for eventual use by you and your family. Instead, a “tankless” system is a heating element connected to a water line. As hot water is needed, the line sends water through the system, rapidly heating it to the desired temperature.

Since the water heater isn’t storing a limited supply of water for use later and only heating it as needed, it can supply a virtually unlimited supply of hot water. This is useful for large families that go through a lot of hot water in a single period of time, such as when people are getting ready in the morning.

However, no matter what size your family is, this other benefit applies to you.

Saving money, both today and tomorrow

Tankless water heaters are more energy-efficient than their standard counterparts. Since they’re only heating water as it’s needed, there’s less energy wasted. All-in-all, one of the chief benefits of a tankless system is that they can significantly cut down on the gas or electricity used in your home, which in turn slashes your monthly energy bills.

Yet, that’s not all. These systems also last longer than standard water heaters; in some cases, a tankless unit can have double the lifespan of a regular water heater. While the upfront cost of a tankless system is typically higher than that of a regular unit, bear in mind that you may have to purchase two water heaters in the same lifespan of one tankless.

Safety and space-savings

As you probably know by now, tankless water heaters do not have a tank. Here’s another benefit to that: the water heater tank burst—a scenario dreaded by homeowners for decades—is out of the equation. There’s no more need to have that stressful thought in the back of your mind, and there’s no putting a price on that.

One final benefit: most tankless water heaters are wall-mounted in your garage, utility closet, or elsewhere. This frees up floor space in some of the most valuable and crowded parts of your home.

To learn more about how tankless water heaters work, call Allbritten!

Allbritten is your source for local, trusted plumbers here in Fresno and the Central Valley. We repair and install tankless systems, as well as standard ones.

To learn more or to get started on a quote for a new demand-type unit, contact us today, or give us a call at (559) 292-4919.

5 things to consider when buying a new furnace (and where to buy)

Buying a new furnace can be a stressful experience. Not only is it a major home investment, but there are so many options—type, efficiency, size, make, model—and companies that offer furnace installation.

In this buyer’s guide, we’re going to walk you through some of the things to consider when you’re in the market for a new heating system.

furnace-tuneup-air-qualityReady to get started? Contact the team at Allbritten to schedule your free in-home estimate. We make the furnace buying and installation process easy for homeowners.

When do you need to upgrade?

What is the state of your furnace? Start by asking yourself the following questions:

  • Age: How old is your furnace? Most furnaces last between 15-20 years, and need to be replaced after that point.
  • Performance: Does your furnace continue to heat your home to your satisfaction, or do you have cold spots?
  • Energy-Efficiency: What do your monthly energy bills look like in the winter? Have they been rising?

If you said yes to any or all of these questions, you should consider buying a new furnace, or at least scheduling a furnace tune-up with Allbritten.

5 things to consider when buying a new furnace

1. What is the system’s fuel source (and what fits your home?)

You can only buy a furnace that uses the fuel source your home has connections for. If you’re not sure what kind of connections your home has, give Allbritten a call for a free in-home quote.

  • Gas — Gas furnaces use natural gas to keep the home warm. They are the most energy-efficient compared other types of furnaces.
  • Propane Oil — Propane oil furnaces are significantly more expensive to operate compared to gas furnaces. This is typically the type of furnace used by those living in remote areas with no ready gas connections and limited electrical connections.
  • Electric — Electric furnaces are also more expensive to operate compared to gas furnaces. However, since most homes have electrical connections, they remain a popular furnace type.

2. How energy-efficient is the system?

Another important factor to consider when buying a new furnace is how energy efficient it is. The furnace efficiency is measured by the AFUE, which stands for the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency.

Consider buying a furnace with AFUE of more than 90 percent. They will give you more warmth for your money, which will result in great cost savings in the long run.

3. Is this system the right size for your home?

Yes, furnace size matters. Your new furnace needs to be right for your square footage and heating needs—too small of a system won’t be able to keep up, while too big of a system will heat inefficiently and constant be starting and stopping.

Furnace size is measured in tons or British Thermal Units (BTU). Determining the right size of furnace for the home requires some calculations. This is why trusted HVAC companies—like Allbritten—start the installation process with a free in-home estimate. Our techs need to take measurements about your home to find the right size of heating system for your family’s heating needs.

4. What advanced features should you be looking for?

Ideally, you should select a furnace that has a variable-speed blower. As the name implies, a variable-speed furnace has the ability to run at different speeds, providing a wider range of heating to your home depending on the temperature inside.

Over time, variable-speed systems can save you a lot of money on your monthly energy bills. (Here’s a breakdown about how they work in air conditioners). They also provide your home with consistent comfort, without “hot” and “cold” spikes.

5. What team should you trust with installation?

This is one of the most important considerations when buying a new furnace. Installation can be the difference between a great-working furnace and one that, well, isn’t.

Allbritten is Fresno’s premier furnace and heating system installer. We’re proud to be a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer, and we’ve been serving this community for decades. Our experienced and friendly techs are furnace installation experts.

Of course, that brings us to our final point.

6. Where’s the best place to start?

The place to start is contacting our team for a free, in-h0me estimate on a new furnace. You can also give us a call at (559) 292-4919.

Here are four signs that you need to install a new air conditioner

Install A New Air ConditionerAir conditioners are an important component inside the house. The equipment keeps the rooms cool and comfortable during the hot summer months.

We can safely say that without an air conditioning unit, we will not be able to enjoy our stay at our homes or offices.

That’s why it’s important to ensure that your air conditioner is properly maintained so that it continues to provide cool air during summers.

Like all mechanical devices, air conditioners have a limited life. No matter how well you maintain the cooling unit, a time will come when you will have no other options than to install a new air conditioner.

Here are four tell-tale signs that indicate that you should think about replacing your old air conditioner with a new one. Call Allbritten for a free in-home estimate and installing a new air conditioner.

1. Your air conditioner is not turning on

The obvious sign that you may need to install a new air conditioner is when it doesn’t turn on. However, before you call a contractor to replace the unit, you should first check whether the cooling device is really dead.

Check whether the thermostat battery needs replacement. Also, you should double-check the circuit breaker to ensure that it has not tripped. A faulty wiring may also be the culprit for the air conditioner not turning on.

A professional air conditioner service technician will be able to determine whether there is something to fix or whether you need to install a new unit. Call Allbritten for AC repair services.

2.  There’s no cool air coming from the registers

Air conditioners should generate cool air when you set the thermostat to ‘cool’ mode. In case cool air does not come from the air register, you may need to have Allbritten inspect your system, and possibly  install a new air conditioner.

The most common reason that the air conditioner does not generate cool air is a faulty compressor. It can cost a great deal to repair the compressor. You should talk with one of our professionals to get the pros and cons of “replace versus repair” options.

3. Your air conditioner is getting older

If your air conditioning unit is more than 20 years old, you should definitely consider installing a new air conditioner. Older units are not as energy efficient as new units. They tend to take more power that jacks up the energy bills.

Moreover, old air conditioners tend to use R-22 refrigerants that are considered harmful to the environment.

So, when you replace your old cooling device, you will not only save on energy bills, but also play your part in ensuring a green and more hospitable environment.

4. Strange noises are coming from the system

If you hear strange noises from the air conditioning unit, your air conditioner is probably at the end of its life. Noise tends to come from the air conditioners due to a faulty motor or compressor, which are costly to repair.

You should call a pro to check out the system. If the cooling device requires expensive repairs you should think about installing a new air conditioner.

Call Allbritten to learn if you need to install a new air conditioner

If you live in Fresno, California or the surrounding areas, you should contact Allbritten professional service technicians for new air conditioner installation.

Here Are 5 Signs Of A Failing Furnace In Your Home

Failing FurnaceA furnace that breaks down in the middle of a cold winter blitz can be extremely discomforting. In order to avoid the discomfort due to a broken furnace, it’s important that you take immediate action at the first sign of a failing furnace.

A number of tell-tale signs show that the furnace needs repair and replacement. Some of the warning signs are easily visible, but not all.

Only a professional technician can know what things to look to detect failing furnace. Call Allbritten for furnace repair if you suspect that your furnace is struggling. Here are few of the more visible warning signs that could point to a failing furnace.

1. Furnace only provides cold air

The most obvious sign that something is wrong with the furnace is cold air coming from the air registers. Most often, the cold air indicates a damaged heat exchanger or blower fan.

Sometimes, the cold air is caused due to crack in the ducts from which outside cold air may be entering the room. Whatever the cause of the cold air, it is important that you immediately contact Allbritten to take a look at your furnace.

2. Old age

A furnace is a mechanical device that has a certain lifespan. Generally, the furnace will last about 15 to twenty years.

If you have the furnace for more than 15 years, and the furnace is not able to warm the room properly, you should consider having the furnace replaced.

3. Abnormal burner flame color

The flame of the furnace burner should be bright blue. A flickering or yellow flame indicates a faulty burner. This is also a sign that the furnace might be producing highly toxic carbon monoxide gas that poses a threat to the people in the home.

You should immediately have the furnace checked by a professional if you see an abnormal color of the burner flame.

4. Strange smells or noises from the furnace

If you notice a strange smell or hear unusual noises emanating from the furnace, you should consider having it checked by a professional technician. The strange noises or smells tend to occur when the furnace is at the end of its life and requires replacement.

5. Water pools around the furnace

Do you see water pooling around that furnace? If so, it may indicate that your furnace may have developed a fault. A professional technician can diagnose the problem and tell you whether the furnace requires repair or replacement.

Sometimes, the pooled water may not be a sign of trouble and may be due to faulty plumbing rather than a damaged furnace. Of course, Allbritten can help with plumbing repair, too. Getting the furnace checked by a professional will ensure that the issue is diagnosed and resolved promptly.

Allbritten can replace your failing furnace with a new system

How many of the above signs apply to your home furnace? If you can identify any one of the above problems, you can contact Albritten for furnace repairs in Fresno, California. We have a team of expert technicians that can conduct all kinds of furnace repair and replacement.

Buying a new air conditioner for the summer? Here’s 5 mistakes to avoid

Buying A New Air ConditionerAn air conditioner keeps your home cool and comfortable during the summer months. That’s why it is important that you buy the right one for your home.

However, due to lack of information, most home owners make mistakes that cost them a lot when buying a new air conditioner. A trusted and reputable air conditioning installation company will guide you through the air conditioning purchase process.

With that in mind, here’s a list of five mistakes that people generally make when buying a new air conditioner.

1. Getting the wrong-sized air conditioner

Air conditioning units come in many different sizes. Unfortunately, a number of people make the mistake of buying a larger sized unit than they need, believing that it will cool the room faster. However, what they don’t realize is that a large-sized cooling unit actually consumes much more power than a properly sized one.

On top of that, you won’t get any additional performance for your money. A larger air conditioner than you need will just be wasteful.

In the same way, buying an undersized unit will result in improper cooling. While the smaller unit will consume less power, it will break down more frequently due to the strain of cooling a large space.

The professional installation team at Allbritten will help you find the air conditioner that’s right for your home and cooling needs. We offer free in-home estimates on new air conditioners.

2. Not focusing on SEER

“SEER” stands for “Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio,” and describes the efficiency of the air conditioner. A SEER ratio of 13 is the minimum recommended for a cooling device. An air conditioning unit with a SEER above 16 provides high efficiency cooling.

The higher the efficiency of the cooling unit, the less your monthly energy bills will be. Apart from lower energy consumption, an air conditioning unit with a higher SEER will efficiently cool the room.

Allbritten is a Factory-Authorized Carrier Dealer. This means we install some of the most energy-efficient air conditioners on the market today. Learn more about our Carrier status and products.

3. Ignoring the refrigerant type

Keep in mind that R-22 refrigerant—commonly known by the brand name “Freon”—has been restricted from use in all types of air conditioning units made after the year 2009. The R-22 refrigerant has ozone-depleting properties. Any air conditioners containing this refrigerant should not be used.

When buying a new air conditioner, make sure that it uses R-410A or approved refrigerant. In some cases, the system can be modified to take the new refrigerant, but it is a costly process. So, it’s much better to buy a new air conditioner that uses approved refrigerant.

4. Not asking about guarantees

An air conditioning unit can sometimes break down due to a manufacturing defect. In order to avoid paying a large sum in repairing the unit soon after purchase, you should enquire whether the unit is covered by a manufacturer’s warranty. At Allbritten, our Carrier air conditioners do come with a manufacturer’s warranty. Plus, we back our with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

5. Not hiring a company with qualified air conditioning technicians

An air conditioner should be installed by an experienced technician. Allbritten’s technicians are some of the best in the Fresno area. That’s because we believe in treating our employees right, so that they can take care of our customers.

Make the right choice when buying a new air conditioner: Call Allbritten

If you’re ready to get started, contact us for your free in-home estimate on a new air conditioner.

What it means to be a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer in Fresno

Allbritten has been serving Fresno and the Central Valley for 84 years. During that time, we’ve seen a lot of changes: the entire definition of what it means to be a “home services” company has completely shifted in those eight decades. There’s two things that are still the same, though: our personal, attentive customer service and Carrier. In fact, they’ve been around even longer than we have!

As a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer, Allbritten is backed by one of the world’s foremost manufacturers of air conditioners and furnaces. Carrier holds us to high standards and guarantees our customers that they’re getting a good deal they can trust. In this blog post, we’ll review what it means for us to be a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer.

Carrier Factory-Authorized DealerWhat makes Carrier a better manufacturer?

There are many HVAC system manufacturers in the world today, but only one of them can be the best, and Carrier has quite the resume. Founded in 1902, Carrier has been at the forefront of cooling and heating technology in the decades since. Starting with the invention of the modern air conditioner to pioneers in energy efficient, quiet technology today, Carrier has redefined what’s possible in home comfort.

Here at Allbritten, we like partnering with Carrier for several reasons. First, they manufacture some of the best air conditioners and furnaces on the market today. They’re more energy efficient and powerful than the competition. Second, Carrier systems are built well and made to last. This makes them reliable and extends their lifespan, which helps our customers avoid large repair costs. Finally, Carrier offers extensive manufacturer warranties on all of their new systems, which gives our customers extra protection for years after their purchase.

What is a Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer?

New HVAC Unit in FresnoA Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer is a business that has met Carrier’s exacting standards for quality service and technicians. Similar to car dealerships, many Authorized Dealers specialize in one brand of HVAC system, and Allbritten installs just Carrier systems. This means that our technicians and team lives and breathes Carrier.

Carrier has high expectations for their authorized dealers. For instance, Allbritten’s representatives go to train at Carrier University, where they learn how to measure homes and fit them for the right kind of air conditioner or furnace. We’re required to use Carrier’s parts and tools—many of which are a finer quality than the generic stuff other companies use.

Carrier also endorses Allbritten’s insurance and liability coverage, that our technicians meet factory standards, and that we, as a company, back all of work with guarantees and stick to them. In other words, the Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer logo can’t just be worn by any fly-by-night company. Allbritten is in a select minority of HVAC companies that meets these standards.

Ready to upgrade to a Carrier?

Whether you need a new furnace or air conditioner, don’t trust another brand or another local company. Allbritten is your source for the best HVAC systems on the market today, as well as the right people to install them in your home. Get in contact with us to schedule your free, in-home estimate. Our technicians will visit your home and take the measurements needed to fit your house and family’s energy needs to the perfect new Carrier system.

Are you ready to get started on the path to better home comfort? Give us a call at (559) 292-4919, or contact us online.

Four reasons your next water heater should be tankless

Lately, you may have heard something about new tankless water heaters—systems that provide homes with unlimited hot water. These systems are great and have many advantages besides a never-ending supply of hot water, such as energy efficiency, a longer lifespan, and a reduced risk of catastrophic failure. Allbritten can walk you through these systems and what they’re capable of.

Tankless Water HeaterWhat is a tankless water heater?

As the name itself states, a tankless water heater doesn’t store hot water in a tank, waiting for you to use it. Instead, a tankless system rapidly heats water when you turn on your faucet. It’s smaller than a traditional water heater and can even be wall-mounted, saving you room in your garage or laundry room.

All the hot water you need

A tankless water heater warms water as it runs through the system, not by storing hot water. This means that you have access to unlimited warm water when you or your family turns on the faucet. No more running out of hot water in the morning.

Save money through efficiency

Whether you’ve used a gas or electric system, heating water can be a large part of your home’s energy bills. A tankless system uses less energy because it’s heating water as you need it, not paying to maintain a store of hot water that you’re not using, such as a traditional system does. With a tankless setup, you’re saving a large amount on your monthly bills that can offset the price of the system.

Longer lifespan

Standard water heaters last about ten years at most, but tankless water heaters can last twice that long if properly maintained. So, while the initial cost of a tankless system may be higher than a conventional one, consider that you might have to buy two standard water heaters in the time you’d have the single tankless unit.

No risk of a burst water heater

When you have a metal tank full of hot water, things can go wrong. Very wrong. In a worst case scenario, your water heater can have pressure build up, putting stress on the interior that eventually results in something breaking and the water getting loose. You could be at work all day, have your water heater burst, and come home to a flood. If you have a tank water heater, Allbritten can help with automatic water shut-off systems. However, we’d recommend considering a switch to a tankless water heater. Since there’s no storage of water, there’s no risk of a burst.

Allbritten can help install a tankless system

If you’re ready to make the switch to a tankless water heater, Allbritten’s skilled and industry-certified plumbers can help. Give us a call to schedule service or to learn more about the tankless setups we offer.