NYC Metro Area’s HVACR Blog

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Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Troubleshooting HVAC: Contractors in NYC Can Help You Catch Stray Energy

Have you heard the term “stray energy”? It refers to all the energy that’s wasted in your building due to incorrect settings and equipment not operating under optimum conditions. Some examples include:

  • Someone adjusts a thermostat for a specific event and then forgets to reset it afterwards.
  • Broken sensors that cause fans or pumps to run when not needed.
  • Undetected problems with automated building management software that cause systems to run incorrectly, such as at night.

Read more 

Commercial HVAC

The Future of Air Conditioning: It’s All About Efficiency and Comfort

What do you consider most important about your air conditioning system? That probably depends on your perspective. If you happen to work for the EPA, it’s energy use. If you’re a facilities manager, it’s reliability. Business owners usually care most about the cost. Employees and customers care about comfort.

In the past, these concerns have sometimes been mutually exclusive. To get the most energy-efficient units, you had to shell out a lot of cash, and in some cases you had to sacrifice some cooling power to get the energy savings. And buying a more expensive system did not necessarily guarantee reliability.

Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Commercial Installations, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Air Conditioning Problems: Repair or Redesign a Noisy AC Unit?

Is Your Noisy Air Conditioning Unit Broken or Poorly Designed? Know the Signs.

Do you feel like that rattling or humming sound coming from your air conditioner is beginning to rattle your brain? It’s not just you. Everyone in the building has noticed: your employees, your customers, and your boss. If you’re in charge of the air conditioning system, they’ll have your head before too long if you don’t do something about it.

It’s no secret: everyone hates annoying background noise. The problem is, the noise is more than just annoying. The acoustical environment affects more than our nerves. Loud background noise drives away customers in a restaurant, decreases productivity in an office and even impacts the learning environment in a school.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

HVAC System Maintenance Just Got a Whole Lot Greener.

If you own a business in New York City, you probably sometimes wonder how your business contributes to the brown haze hanging over the city. You certainly can’t help noticing how much energy you’re using and how much it’s costing you every month.

Did you know that up to half of that energy is being consumed by your HVAC system? According to reports by the U.S. Small Business Administration and the U.S. Energy Information Administration, commercial HVAC systems account for between 40 and 50 percent of fuel consumption.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

HVAC Troubleshooting Tips for Healthcare Facility Managers

When you are managing a healthcare facility, people’s lives are in your hands. As a result, you face a great deal of risk on a daily basis. With so much to worry about, your HVAC system may be one thing that’s out of sight and out of mind. But the consequences of a poorly-performing air conditioning system (or worse, a system failure) are much more serious than just discomfort.

The health of your HVAC system has a major impact not only on the temperature, but on the overall air quality in your facility. For hospitals, nursing homes, ambulatory care centers and other healthcare facilities, temperature fluctuations and air quality issues can make the difference between life and death for at-risk or elderly patients.Read more 

Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Avoid Refrigeration Repair and Improve Your NYC Restaurant Grade

Want an “A” on Your Restaurant Health Inspection? Better Get Up to Speed on Refrigeration Maintenance

NYC Restaurant Letter Grades. You know that sinking feeling you get in the pit of your stomach when the NYC health inspector walks into your restaurant? It’s kind of like a moment of imminent danger when your life flashes before your eyes. You instantly see all the things you’ve been meaning to take care of, like the low-boy on your cooking line that’s been running too warm. Then you imagine the potentially catastrophic violations that could come as a total surprise: like having to throw out everything in your self-serve display case because the temperature is too high, and facing a C grade or even the closing of your restaurant because of a Condition V critical violation.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Want a Proven Way to Win the Battle Against Pollen? Call Your HVAC Service Provider.

Pollen counts are at record levels. If you are among the more than 50 million Americans affected by allergies, you already know this! Even people without allergies can experience symptoms when there is a significant amount of pollen in the air. Symptoms can include not only the typical runny nose, sneezing and itchy eyes, but also headaches, fatigue, coughing and asthma.

It stands to reason that avoiding the allergens can reduce symptoms. However, pollen spores are among the most difficult allergens to avoid. Most of us need to go outside sometime, and even indoors it can be challenging to remove pollen particles because many of them are so tiny in size. They also may be lurking in places you haven’t considered, like your building’s ventilation system.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

A Guide to Getting an HVAC Maintenance Agreement for the Newbie

Who Me? Find an HVAC Service Provider?

If you work for a smaller operation, chances are you wear a lot of different hats. Even if you were hired to do a specific job, periodically you’re probably asked to take on a responsibility that is outside your comfort zone. When you know nothing about the task in question or even where to start, it can be overwhelming to say the least.

If you’ve been asked to get a quote for an HVAC service contract, and you wouldn’t know a condenser coil from a HEPA filter, read on for some information about how to get started and what to expect from the best service providers.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Summer in the City and Air Conditioning Problems

Is Your Retail Business a Comfort Zone?

Ah, summer in New York City! Temperatures are soaring, humidity is rising and people on the NYC streets are seeking relief from the oppressive heat. Will they find it in your retail store or restaurant? Comfort is an important factor in where people choose to shop or dine. If your establishment is too hot or too cold, you may be driving away customers in droves.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Be a Hero: Save Money on Energy For Your Business with Energy Rebates

As the demand for energy continues to rise, utility companies are offering rebates to customers as a way to reduce usage and avoid having to spend millions to construct new plants. If you are a homeowner, you may have taken advantage of some of these rebates. What you may not know is that utility companies also offer rebates to businesses that choose energy-efficient options for construction, equipment purchases and facilities operation.

It’s no surprise that utility rates on the rise again: electricity rates are expected to increase by more than 4 percent this year, and gas prices could go up by as much as 10 percent. If your HVAC equipment is getting up there in years, now may be a good time to consider replacing older units with newer models that use much less energy than older models. You can offset the rate increases by reducing your energy usage, and you can also earn you cash rebates from your utility company.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

15 Tips to Keep Your Energy Bills From Skyrocketing This Summer

How to Save Money on Energy Bills

Apparently New York City is about to get hit with a double-whammy: a hot summer and rising electricity rates. According to the 2014 Farmer’s Almanac, NYC is in for an exceptionally hot and humid summer. On top of that, you’ll see a rise in electricity prices. According to Con Edison, a typical business customer can expect average summer bills to rise between 4 and 5 percent.

There’s not much you can do about the weather (except maybe a rain dance) but there’s an easy thing you can do about your energy bill: USE LESS. It stands to reason that decreased consumption lowers your cost. But you may not realize that trimming usage also helps lower rates. It’s simple economics: higher demand means higher rates, and lowering demand by decreasing usage results in lower rates.

Here are 15 top tips that can result in real energy savings this summer:Read more 

Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Display Case Breakdown: Avoid Costly Commercial Refrigeration Repair

Cold Case: Display Case Gone Bad

For owners of New York City convenience stores, delicatessens, coffee shops and bakeries your refrigerated display cases are the lifeblood of your business. You’ve probably gone to a great deal of time and expense to choose the best commercial refrigeration equipment for your needs, and design a space that showcases your products in the most attractive and convenient way. And of course, you count on that equipment to work reliably 24 hours a day to keep items fresh for your customers.

If a display case breaks down, and you need commercial refrigeration repair, it’s a major headache and a major expense. You may be forced to throw out a lot of expensive product, not to mention the lost business while the unit is down. Then you have to fix or replace the unit in a hurry. Of course it will happen at the most convenient time, on a Sunday or a holiday when the service rates are at a premium. You may even have a health and safety issue if customers consumed food that was not kept at the proper temperature.Read more 

Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Blast Chillers 101: How to Avoid Commercial Refrigeration Repair

‘Just Me and My Blast Chiller’

If you run just about any type of food service operation, your blast chiller is your best buddy…or at least one of your most critical pieces of commercial refrigeration equipment. It increases the productivity of your kitchen by allowing you to make larger batches and produce more product during slow periods. It reduces waste since you no longer need to throw out leftovers every day. Most importantly, it preserves the flavor, aroma, color, texture, and nutrients in your food, improving the quality of what you serve. Use of blast chillers can even reduce your legal liability by ensuring that your food is handled in compliance with food safety regulations.

The best part is, your blast chiller asks for very little in return. These units are very reliable and can easily last 15 to 20 years. All you need to do is some simple cleaning and maintenance. What more could you ask from one piece of equipment?Read more 

Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

The Restaurant Owner’s Guide to Commercial Refrigeration Maintenance

New York City’s Restaurant Week is fast approaching. Each year New Yorkers and tourists flood the city’s restaurants for a chance to taste what might normally be beyond their budget or their pallette. If you’re a restaurant owner that could mean a huge boon for business. But if your refrigeration equipment fails, all those bang-for-your-buck meals won’t mean much. So, in advance of restaurant week, we’ll be posting great tips and resources on how to keep your equipment (and your head) cool!

As a restaurant owner, your refrigeration equipment is both your best friend and your worst nightmare. Without your coolers, chillers and freezers, you’d be serving lukewarm drinks, wilted salads and melted ice cream. Let’s face it, without them you wouldn’t be in business at all. And that’s exactly the problem: when they break down, your business quickly comes to a screeching halt.Read more 

Commercial Installations, Preventive Maintenance Agreements, Residential HVAC

Repair or Replace Your Ailing AC Unit: 6 Critical Factors to Consider

It’s an age old question: how can you tell when a piece of equipment has outlived its useful life? Can you get your older unit to last another couple of years by fixing it, or will you have to continue putting money into it? Newer units are more energy efficient and can lower your electric bill, but what about the upfront cost?

One reason this is such a commonly asked question is that there is no cut and dried answer. There are many factors to consider when making this decision. You’re probably aware that some service providers will try to sell you a new system when your old one just needs a simple repair. Other providers that make their money on repeat service calls may encourage you to keep fixing a unit that’s become a money pit. So how can you decide? Consider the following:Read more 

Commercial HVAC

The Unique Challenges of Delivering Great HVAC Service in NYC

If you’re a business owner in NYC, you’re probably like most others in that you don’t give a lot of thought to what it takes to keep your air conditioning working. You may not fully appreciate everything that your dedicated HVAC service tech has to go through to make that happen. New York City may be the greatest city in the world, but it can be a circus and a challenging place to work on HVAC systems. So if you’re evaluating vendors, than considering a service provider’s history and experience with the challenges of providing excellent service in New York City is a must.Read more 

Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration

Commercial Refrigeration Troubleshooting: Find & Fix Your Leaks!

Do you have an older air conditioning unit with a slow leak? If so, you probably end up calling in your HVAC service provider every summer when the unit stops cooling effectively. They give you two options: find and fix the leak, which will take longer and cost more, or just refill the refrigerant, which is the less expensive quick fix. You may be tempted to go for the cheaper option. The building will be cool again faster, so why pay more?Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration

What You Need to Know About F-Gases and HVAC Service

In today’s world, it would be very difficult to live without air conditioning and refrigeration, let alone run a business. But the refrigerants these systems use to preserve our food and keep us cool are doing just the opposite to our planet. When leaked into the atmosphere, older refrigerants like freon cause depletion of the ozone layer, and newer refrigerants called F-gases contribute to the greenhouse effect and global warming.

As long as these chemicals stay where they belong, inside your cooling equipment, there is no cause for alarm. The problem comes in when the systems develop slow leaks, or are serviced by technicians who don’t use the right equipment and techniques for working with refrigerants.

As a facilities manager, it’s your job to ensure the safe handling of refrigerants in your building. You could face hefty fines if found to be in violation of the EPA’s Clean Air Act. And as global warming increasingly wreaks havoc on the climate, our grandchildren will pay a much higher price.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Commercial Kitchen, Commercial Refrigeration

What You Need to Know About Refrigerant Safety and Your HVAC System

If It’s Bad for the Ozone Layer, It’s Bad for You.

If you’re a facility manager, you may think all you need to know about your air conditioning system is that it’s working properly. If the building is cool, why worry about how that happens?

The reason you should be concerned is that refrigerants, the chemicals in your air conditioner that actually do the cooling, can pose a serious threat to your building’s occupants (not to mention the planet’s ozone layer) if not handled properly.

It’s important to understand the potential dangers posed by refrigerants so you make sure to hire only qualified technicians to work on your air conditioning system, and so that you take precautions to prevent any accidents from occurring in your building.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

10 Ways to Tweak Your HVAC System and Save on Your Energy Bills

Did you know that as much as 50% of your building’s energy consumption is used by your HVAC system? Any day now, the temperatures will start to soar into the 80’s and 90’s, and your electricity bills will rise along with the temperatures. You need to keep your building cool, so how can you save money? The good news is, there are smart ways to help your air conditioning system use less energy.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements, Residential HVAC

Top 10 Questions Facility Managers Should Ask NYC HVAC Contractors

If you’ve been with your current HVAC vendor for years (even if it was a happy marriage at first) your relationship can unravel to the point where it’s time to move on. When you’re waiting for a repair, are they MIA for hours with no phone call? Do they send untrained technicians who don’t understand your system? Are they negligent about doing preventative maintenance? Do they leave a mess behind?

If you’re experiencing lousy response times and sub-par service from your HVAC vendor, you may be putting off “breaking it off” because it’s such a daunting task to find someone better. How can you tell which of the thousands of HVAC contractors in the New York City area can be counted on to provide great service?Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements, Residential HVAC

Top 6 Frequently Asked Questions about Air Conditioning Systems

If you are a facility manager or building owner, chances are you’ve had questions about your air conditioning system. You may hesitate to ask your service technician (whom you’re probably paying by the hour) in the middle of a repair visit. It can be frustrating to try and find straightforward answers when you’re not an expert, so we have put together a handy guide with answers to the most common questions we hear every day.Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Could Your New York HVAC System Be Making You Sick?

Yesterday was Earth Day, and here at Arista we work hard to be environmental leaders in the HVAC&R industry, both in our offices and in the field. We created our Blue Sky Initiative to inform our community about currently available clean and green practices. We believe that we can all be comfortable without sacrificing air quality or overtaxing our natural resources. In honor of Earth Day, this post is dedicated to one of the key ways regular HVAC maintenance can actually help promote a healthy environment!

Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Rooftop HVAC Units: Out of Sight Shouldn’t Mean Out of Mind

You probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the roof of your building. Why should you? It’s just there to keep you sheltered, safe and comfortable. As long as it’s not leaking, there’s not much to think about, right? Wrong. There’s something up there that desperately needs your attention: your HVAC rooftop unit.

An HVAC rooftop unit (known as an RTU) provides the heating, cooling and most of the ventilation for light commercial spaces, such as office buildings, stores and shopping centers, restaurants and schools. An RTU is a single assembled unit that includes a condenser and an evaporator coil for cooling, a heat source and a fan for forced air heating, and an opening for the intake of outside air.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Does Your HVAC Service Provider Have a Disaster Recovery Plan?

It seems like every day we wake up to find that another natural disaster or emergency has wreaked havoc on cities, businesses and countless lives. It’s enough to keep a business owner up at night, wondering if your business could survive such a situation. What would you do if it happened to you?

It’s no secret that having a disaster recovery plan can make the difference between getting back up and running after a catastrophe and losing your business permanently. You probably have plans in place for evacuation, communication with employees and customers, power supply and data access. But there is an equally important aspect of emergency planning that many fail to consider: are your service providers prepared for disasters, and will they be able to respond when you need them most?Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Clean HVAC System Condenser Coils = Lower Energy Bills

New York City air is rough on air conditioners. Especially on those hot days when your air conditioner needs to work at peak capacity, it’s easy to see the air quality problems in the brown haze that hangs over the city. The high levels of airborne soot and debris cause buildup on the outdoor components of your air conditioning unit, most notably the condenser coil.

Did you know that only 1/100th of an inch of dirt buildup on your air conditioner’s condenser coil reduces its efficiency by 5 percent? Buildup on the coils means your equipment has to work harder to cool your building, and when it works harder, it uses more energy. That means higher energy costs for you. If your air conditioner has not been serviced in a while, the buildup of dirt and debris on the condenser coils could be increasing your electric bill by as much as 20 to 30 percent.Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

If I Have a Warranty, Why Do I Need an HVAC Service Contract?

Your last air conditioner broke down on the hottest day of the year, and now you’ve got a brand new system installed. You’re probably breathing a sigh of relief and thinking you’re good to go. But there is one more thing you need to take care of, and it may be the reason your old system failed in the first place. You need to set up a service contract for your new system that covers regular preventative maintenance with a qualified HVAC service provider.

Many business owners make the mistake of thinking that they don’t need a service contract because their equipment’s warranty covers them in case anything goes wrong. The truth is, warranties typically only cover product defects. If you want to keep your system running smoothly and efficiently for many years to come, you need the regular maintenance that is covered under a service contract.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Residential HVAC

Go Mobile or Go Home: Why Your HVAC Vendor Should Be Using Mobile Technology

Does your HVAC service technician show up with a paper work order in hand? Does he continuously have to go out to the truck to call the office for information? When you want to pay with a credit card, does he scribble down the information on a piece of paper?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then you should consider switching to a provider that uses more efficient hand held mobile devices to support the work order process. Devices can include smart phones, tablet computers, and dedicated wireless devices. Use of the latest communication technology is not just easier for the provider, but results in quicker response times, better security and more reliable service for you.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Facility Management, Your Commercial HVAC System and the Most Effective Choice You’ll Make All Week

If you could delegate half of your job, which half would it be? If you manage a large enterprise facility, it’s probably the hours you spend on the phone scheduling service calls, ordering parts, and handling stacks of invoices.

Believe it or not, you can delegate this half of your job while also saving your company money and improving the performance and lifespan of your equipment. But how? Hiring someone is out of the question, and unfortunately cloning yourself is not possible quite yet.

This is a job for a facilities management software system.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

HVAC System Maintenance: Why Your Mechanical Contractor Can’t Get the Job Done

It’s 92 degrees in the shade, and the temperature hovers at a tropical 85 in your building. Your employees are calling in sick and your customers are walking out the door. You’ve put in three calls to your air conditioning service provider, with no response.

This frustrating situation is probably all too familiar if the mechanical contractor that installed your HVAC system is still servicing it. If this is the case, chances are you have experienced these warning signs that your mechanical contractor is providing sub-par service:Read more 

Commercial HVAC

6 Tools Your NYC HVAC Vendor Should Be Using And Why.

As a business owner or facilities manager, you’re juggling a wide variety of priorities every day. Even if you are a jack of all trades, you may not be a master of all of them, including your HVAC system. When you need an HVAC service provider, how do you find a vendor you can trust to handle maintenance and emergency repair quickly, efficiently, accurately and with minimal contact?

Going with the company your neighbor uses or the one with the most years in business will not guarantee the results you need. Instead, differentiate the HVAC industry leaders by the tools these companies use to maximize efficiency, ensure accuracy and improve customer service.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Residential HVAC

Your Hairdresser Has More Licensing Than Your NYC HVAC Vendor

When you walk into a hair salon, it’s reassuring to see the certificate on the wall that guarantees your hairdresser is professionally educated, so you can be confident you won’t be hiding under a hat for the next month.

When it comes to choosing a qualified HVAC service provider for your business, selecting a provider with no professional credentials based solely on price would be like letting your friend’s sister cut your hair–but with more expensive and potentially dangerous consequences.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements, Residential HVAC

10 Myths About Your HVAC System Debunked

Properly running, maintaining and getting the most out of your HVAC system is a top priority of any building manager or owner. And yet, there are a host of misconceptions that can railroad that objective and affect the bottom line.

Just like the tooth-fairy and the alligators in the sewers, the following 10 myths are the source of some serious confusion. Understanding them is the first step to getting the most out of your heating and air conditioning.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Desperately Seeking Service: How To Prepare Your HVAC System for the Next Big Storm

In the aftermath of winter storms like Titan and Gemini and Ulysses (insert your own winter storm of mythological name and proportion), commercial business owners and building managers frozen heat pump are feeling the effects in states across the country. In the midst of tending to the obvious frustrations of constant shoveling, keeping roofs clear of weighty snow, more shoveling and ensuring pipes don’t freeze you may have forgotten to check your HVAC system. But that could spell big trouble with temperatures hovering around freezing.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Target Hackers Accessed Info Through HVAC Vendor: How to Vet Your Provider and Stay Safe

We recently posted a series of articles on the impact of an HVAC System to your bottom line, including the importance of a comfortable temperature for customer retention. Not long ago, in an attempt to maintain the kind of comfort that encourages folks to stay in stores on frigid winter days, Target authorized its HVAC vendor to monitor temperature, troubleshoot system issues and chances are, if you own a computer, or a television, or a radio, or a newspaper you know the rest of the story.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

4 Reasons Why the Average Office Temperature Could Cost You Your Job.

How regularly do you consider your physical work environment? The way it affects your sense of personal satisfaction? Work ethic? Productivity?

Let’s try it. Stop whatever you’re doing (except reading this post, of course). What is the very first thing you notice? Is it the noise level? The brightness of the fluorescents above your work station?

Well, according to the IFMA, it’s probably the temperature.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Commercial Installations

8 Steps to a Successful HVAC System Redesign: An Infographic

According to the International Facility Management Association, temperature is the #1 number one complaint expressed by office workers. So how can you make sure your building temperature is comfortable and worker friendly?

Typically, simple updates to your HVAC system can help solve the problem, but sometimes it takes a redesign to make a world of difference.

Nearly 40% of HVAC systems are between 16-30 years old. Knowing this, it’s easy to see how, if not properly maintained or updated, systems can pose their own sets of problems for workers beyond just heating and cooling variations. A redesign may be much needed.We’ve created this simple infographic to help you quickly get on your way to a stress-free redesign.

Checkout our Infographic: 8 Steps to A Successful HVAC System Redesign

Small changes to your HVAC system are often the key to improving temperature variances. So before considering a redesign, check with your service provider for minor adjustments that can pay big dividends, now and into the future.

Want more tips? Download Improving an Imperfect World: Mitigating Office Temperature Extremes. Don’t waste time and money. Find out how easy it can be take control of your building’s climate!


Find out how to win the battle for optimal office temperature

Commercial HVAC

Arista & Gramercy Tavern: An HVAC Love Story

If you’ve been reading our blog, you’ve probably noticed we try not to talk too much about ourselves. Generally, we prefer to be a resource rather than a bullhorn. But in honor of Valentine’s Day we thought we’d get a little personal, heat things up a bit.

Ok, ok. We know what you’re thinking: this business isn’t particularly sexy, certainly not romantic. You’re right. Hugh Grant has never made a movie about HVAC. E.L. James didn’t write 50 Degrees of Grey. and in fact, we know we’ve done the job right when no one notices us at all.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Are Temperature Extremes Causing a Hostile Work Environment? Get Your HVAC System Checked!

According to recent studies, comfortable indoor temperatures have a direct affect on the health and productivity of a building’s employees, tenants or customers. In fact, the right environment can improve workforce output and enhance customer experience directly resulting in savings for your business, property or tenants. It may surprise you how simple fixes to your HVAC system can help to better meet the comfort needs of the tenants, workers or customers in your building. And chances are, it won’t break your budget.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements, Residential HVAC

The Three ‘E’s of a Commercial HVAC Maintenance Agreement

Responsible building managers and business owners are constantly trying to find cost effective ways to operate while still providing top notch services to their property’s occupants. Because the price tag of an ongoing service agreement with a heating and air conditioning contract seems high, many believe that bringing this type of equipment maintenance and repair in house is a more suitable arrangement. However, the cost of HVAC service agreements is not so expensive when you look at the benefits of having a professional available when you need one.

Read more 

Commercial HVAC

5 HVAC Maintenance Troubleshooting Tips that Could Save You Money

As a building owner or property manager, you know that an HVAC equipment failure can result in significant backlash from the people who rely on you to maintain a comfortable environment. With your reputation and bottom line at stake, it’s wise to monitor these systems closely for maintenance and repair needs. This quick checklist is designed to help you avoid costly repairs and shut-downs by staying on top of your equipment’s most critical components.

  1. The major mechanical components of your heating and refrigeration system need to be examined at regular intervals. Check the boilers, as the combustion air should be operating at a rate of one square inch free area for every 2,000 BTUs. The cooling tower should be free of any slime or algae, so you need to address fluid leaks or debris. If you see any mold growth, make sure your biocide treatment is working properly.
  2. Inspect your air handling unit as well, especially the outdoor air intake. You should check the area around the module to see if there are any sources of contaminants that can flow through to the interior of the building. Have a look at the fan, including the blade and motor condition. If you see areas of deterioration, replace these parts as necessary.
  3. Your HVAC preventative maintenance checklist should include checking your HVAC distribution system. It’s important that air flow throughout the building is unobstructed, from the supply air to the return ventilation. Review any drain pans to ensure there are no leaks or indication of mold growth. You’ll need to replace or clean air filters as well. It might be helpful to keep a maintenance calendar so you’ll know when new filters were installed and when they need to be replaced.
  4. Thermostat controls are also important to your HVAC preventative maintenance checklist. In summer and winter, adjust the set points to make sure you’re getting the best efficiency from your heating and air conditioning system. Make notes to indicate the location of each device, as well as the operations it controls. If you’re ever unavailable or off-site, the teams repairing your system will have easy access to this key information.
  5. Outdoor units are susceptible to debris from grime, dirt, tree branches, and bird feathers. Check the space around this HVAC equipment, as there should be about a two foot clearance around the intake area of both heat pumps and A/C units. You should check these outdoor components more frequently than other parts of your system, even as often as once a week. Also, make sure to do a walk through after heavy storms, as debris falling during heavy winds can get stuck near the air intake.

This checklist should help empower you to ask smart, relevant questions and hold your service provider accountable for what’s in your preventative maintenance agreement. Don’t have a maintenance agreement? Remember that while much of this troubleshooting can be done on your own, ultimately repairs and maintenance should only be done by your HVAC vendor as most manufacturer warranties won’t cover equipment that serviced by anyone other than a licensed HVAC technician.

To find out more about the value of a preventative maintenance agreement, download a free copy of our guide to understanding HVAC service agreements, HVAC Preventative Maintenance Contracts: How to Find the Right One for Your Infrastructure.


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Preventive Maintenance Agreements

4 Things You Better Be Getting With Your HVAC Maintenance Contract?

As a building owner or property manager, you know that an HVAC equipment failure can result in significant backlash from the people who rely on you to maintain a comfortable environment. With your reputation and bottom line at stake, it’s wise to monitor these systems closely for maintenance and repair needs. This quick checklist is designed to help you avoid costly repairs and shut-downs by staying on top of your equipment’s most critical components.Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

HVAC System Maintenance: Don’t Get Left Out in the Cold When You Turn Up the Heat

Winter weather has certainly found its way to the metro area. With Winter Storm Janus barely behind us, single digit temperatures, and another few inches of snow on the way for the weekend, building owners and business and facilities managers need to be prepared for the changing (or, maybe charging) seasons, and the heating and air conditioning components should be high on the list of priorities. To keep your systems operating smoothly throughout the year, make sure to follow some tips from the experts on HVAC maintenance for winter.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements, Residential HVAC

Lacking Confidence in Your Current HVAC Service Contract? Consider an Independent System & Maintenance Review

How confident are you that your HVAC maintenance provider has your best interest in mind when it comes to caring for your HVAC system?

Do you actually trust them? Or, are you tolerating them because it’s so overwhelming to find a new vendor?
It’s true–if you’re unsure that your current HVAC maintenance provider has your back, the thought of finding a new vendor can seem overwhelming. Sometimes it seems easier to stick with “the devil you know” rather than seek out other options.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Residential HVAC

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone and Into a New HVAC Service Contract

Are you content with the quality of your HVAC service contract? Terminating a contract is not as difficult as you might think — and can mean the difference between a system that runs smoothly and one that runs poorly due to inattention and sub-par maintenance. Even if you’re feeling hesitant about seeking a new provider, there’s no good reason to stay locked into a bad contract.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Preventive Maintenance Agreements

GC vs. HVAC Professional: 4 Things You Should Know About Commercial HVAC Maintenance

If you’re like many property managers or building owners in the Tri-State area, you’ve probably got a general commercial contractor that you rely on for service at your property. For most maintenance work, this type of arrangement works perfectly. You can call your contractor for everything from plumbing issues to basic construction repairs. However, when it comes to more complex systems like your HVAC, the importance of an HVAC specialist for your building becomes obvious.There are a few key reasons why you need a specialist for these all-important components:Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Residential HVAC

4 Ways to Make Sure Your NYC HVAC Vendor isn’t Taking You For A Ride.

Most building managers and property owners rely on the expertise of professionals when it comes to maintaining commercial HVAC systems. Considering the sophistication of today’s systems and the ever-growing list of responsibilities associated with being a building manager or owner, it’s only logical to delegate system issues to the certified technicians who have the experience and know-how it takes to address them.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

8 Points That Will Make or Break Your HVAC Maintenance Agreement

Entering into an agreement to have your HVAC systems maintained by professionals is a wise business decision–no matter what your industry may be. Common knowledge would dictate that when you have reliable experts undertaking repairs and handling preventative, you’re less likely to experience problems that can affect your company’s bottom line. However, as with any important contract, there are a few points to consider regarding HVAC maintenance agreements.Read more 

Commercial HVAC, Residential HVAC

6 Ways to Build a Great HVAC Service Relationship From the Start

If you’ve been reading, you probably already know there are consequences for poor HVAC maintenance.

You know that it could mean costly future repairs or long down times. And, if you’ve downloaded our white paper, Calculating the Hidden Costs of Poor HVAC Maintenance, you may even know that a poorly running HVAC system has a significant effect on your customer retention rate and ultimately your bottom line. (For more information on how your HVAC system could help you positively influence buyer behavior, download the white paper, below.)Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

6 Signs It’s Time for HVAC Preventative Maintenance

Though it may seem like a small detail, maintaining a comfortable temperature on your company’s premises is absolutely essential to your bottom line. Regardless of industry, customer retention rates drop when temperature comfort is not considered and addressed. Therefore, your HVAC system needs to be in proper working order and maintained on a frequent basis.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Poor HVAC Maintenance Means Poor Profits.That’s the Bottom Line.

As a business owner, monitoring hard costs is a vital part of maintaining your livelihood and the consequences of not accounting for them can be dire. You’re constantly keeping an eye on expenses like payroll, rent or mortgage, and let’s not forget energy costs. Your HVAC system is one of the most expensive and integral parts of your infrastructure, and yet it’s not likely that you’ve even thought about it lately.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Sweating the Small Stuff: HVAC Maintenance Can Help You Get Pumped

This year, after all the stuffing had been stuffed, and the tryptophan finally wore off, millions of Americans headed back to the gym. But what would have happened if when they arrived the the place was an icebox, or worse, a sauna?

As the building owner or manager of a health club, you know that members expect high levels of service when they join your facility. Those expectations extend to an environment that facilitates their fitness goals rather than hindering them.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

HVAC System Maintenance in Healthcare Facilities: A Matter of Life & Death?

As a building owner or property manager, you may associate HVAC expenses with equipment purchases, monthly energy bills or maintenance and repair expenses. But what about the less visible — but no less expensive — costs to your business due to an out-of-spec system or equipment failure?

For hospitals, nursing homes, ambulatory care centers and other healthcare facilities, temperature fluctuations can mean much more than simply an inconvenience. They could make the difference between life and death for at-risk or elderly patients, the loss of your facility’s professional license, the threat of expensive litigation or even criminal charges.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Surprising Connection Between HVAC Systems & Restaurant Profitability

Considering how much restaurants invest in creating the ideal dining atmosphere, it’s surprising how few treat heating and cooling equipment maintenance as equally important. It’s not just the mood music or the right lighting that can have an impact on customer behavior. The optimal temperature is a key part of a restaurant’s overall experience — and a positive overall experience is what keeps diners returning for another meal.Read more 

Commercial HVAC

Want More Productive Workers? Check Your HVAC Systems

Did you know that the temperature in an office building could have a profound effect on the efficiency of its workers? As the temperature varies, so does their level of productivity — and it’s your business that may ultimately take a hit. If you oversee the heating and cooling of an office building, there is reason for concern, because a properly maintained and temperature-regulated HVAC system is critical to the success of your tenants.Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

HVAC Preventative Maintenance: The Dollars and Sense

Understanding HVAC preventative maintenance pricing can be one of the more frustrating aspects of HVAC Preventative Maintenance shopping for an agreement.

When you consider that there are no industrywide standards when it comes to preventive maintenance agreements for HVAC systems and parts — as well as all of the added-on services that can be applied to an agreement, the age and projected life of the equipment, the complexity of today’s systems and, in some quarters, the lack of familiarity with older systems — comparing prices from one vendor to another is no easy task.

Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

Proactive HVAC Preventative Maintenance: Are You Ready?

Here in New York, Fall is finding its way into Winter fairly on schedule. And, cold weather means it’s time to heat things up, and get proactive about your HVAC system.

Depending on the coverage you choose, your service contract may include more or fewer of the services listed below. As you’ve seen in our previous posts on the subject, contractors offer a wide range of coverage options. With the help of an HVAC expert from a reputable contractor, you should have no problem constructing a plan that’s right for your budget and your building.Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

4 Scary Misconceptions That’ll Make You Witch You Had an HVAC Preventative Maintenance Agreement.

OK, excuse the cheeky title, but it’s Halloween and we couldn’t resist.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been discussing various aspects of HVAC preventive maintenance, including the importance of a good plan, choosing the right vendor and what to look for when selecting a service contract. To wrap up this series of blog posts, let’s review why having a preventive agreement makes sense for your building and your budget.

Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

What Do Flu Shots & HVAC Preventative Maintenance Contracts Have in Common?

Both are a pain in the, ah hem…arm, and you’ll probably regret it if you don’t get one.

If you’re reading this likely you’re either in the process of selecting an HVAC vendor, or (like many people) you’ve had a frustrating, confusing, or downright devastating experience with a previous maintenance contract. And yet, you want to do your best to prevent equipment failure, keep your employees and tenants happy, and save time, money and stress in the process.

From mechanical contractors to manufacturers, there are a wide variety of vendors who offer preventive maintenance contracts, and not all of their services are equal. This article–and this series, really–is meant to help you avoid preventative maintenance mayhem, by giving you the knowledge you need to make the decision that’s right for you.

In our last post we discussed all the ways contractors can vary; now, let’s review the various types of service agreements help you make an informed decision before investing in one.

HVAC maintenance contract types can generally be narrowed down to the following:

  • Full Coverage — The ultimate insurance policy for the buyer, as the contractor assumes the risk for most anything that can go wrong with your system. But make sure you understand exactly how each vendor defines “full coverage.”
  • Full Labor — Typically covers 100% of the labor to repair, replace and maintain most HVAC equipment. As the system owner or manager, you’re responsible for the cost of any equipment and parts needed to complete the repair.
  • Preventive Maintenance — Generally a “fixed fee” charge for a specified number of scheduled maintenance visits annually. Though initially less expensive than a full-service or full-labor contract, any emergencies, repairs and replacements must be paid for on a labor-and-materials basis.
  • Inspection Service — This is typically the least expensive type of agreement — and the least valuable when it comes to protecting your system. It is also usually purchased for a fixed annual fee and includes a specified number of periodic inspections.

Variations are possible within each contract type, but it depends on the system owner’s requirements and the contractor’s ability and willingness to modify or customize service offerings.

Don’t be driven by price alone — if a service provider is less than reputable or misquotes costs, you can bet they’ll only do the minimum to keep your system running until the end of the contract term.

To learn more about HVAC service agreements, download our free guide to HVAC Preventive Maintenance Contracts: How to Find the Right One for Your HVAC Infrastructure.

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Preventive Maintenance Agreements

HVAC Preventative Maintenance: Making Sense of Contractors’ Services

When it comes to preventative maintenance, one of the most important decisions you’ll make is deciding what contractor to hire.

In our last post, we discussed the overall concept of preventative maintenance and the value of a comprehensive service plan. Now, we’ll go into more depth on choosing the right vendor for your needs.

There are a wide variety of contractors — not all necessarily specialists in HVAC services — who offer preventive maintenance agreements for commercial buildings.

Read more 

Preventive Maintenance Agreements

HVAC Preventative Maintenance: Your Property’s Safety Net

Welcome to the first of our four-part series on HVAC preventative maintenance contracts.

Over the next four weeks, we’ll be talking about the various types of contracts that are available,HVAC Preventative Maintenance Contract and how having a well-maintained system can benefit your building — and your budget.

Let’s get started with the overall importance of preventative maintenance. The right hvac preventative maintenance agreement considers the technology, age, frequency of use and load requirements of your HVAC system. This helps to sustain a building’s overall profitability by addressing worker comfort and productivity, equipment reliability and energy-efficient operation. When performed regularly and systematically, hvac preventative maintenance can greatly improve system performance, reduce equipment degradation and maximize the life span of your HVAC system.

Use the following checklist as a starting point for thorough preventative maintenance:

  • Twice-yearly inspections, with seasonal start-up and run inspections.
  • Seasonal preventative maintenance of chillers and boilers.
  • Cooling tower inspection that includes: disassembling screens and access panels; inspecting the tower fill, support structure, sump and spray nozzles, fill valve, gear box, drive coupling, fan blades and motor bearings; cleaning starter and cabinet; wiring inspection; checking motor starter contacts for wear and proper operation; megger testing the motor and log readings; and checking the condition of the sump heater and contactor, and log observations.
  • Inspection of couplings and checking for leaks. Investigating unusual noises.
  • Air-handling unit maintenance, which includes cleaning or replacing air filters at least quarterly, based on their condition.

Variations among vendor services

Now that you’re familiar with the basics of good HVAC preventative maintenance, it’s important to know what qualities to look for when evaluating various types of maintenance contracts. HVAC vendors offer several different levels of service — be sure to consider the following before deciding on one:

  1. How old are the components in your HVAC system? Do you want to cover them all?
  2. How much are you willing to spend?
  3. How much of your system and its parts are you willing to leave to chance?

Always remember to compare and contrast — not all contracts are created equal. Since there are no industry standards when it comes to what is and what is not included in preventative maintenance agreements, it’s important that you trust the company whose services you’re about to purchase. A service contract is only as good as the company that stands behind it.

Want to learn more? Download HVAC Preventive Maintenance Contracts: How to Find the Right One for Your HVAC Infrastructure, a free guide to evaluating HVAC contracts and vendors.

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