2006 proved to be a very exciting year in the heating and air conditioning business. We suffered through one of the hottest summer seasons on record. I think I have successfully blocked out the memory of how busy it was during this past July and August.

One thing that has really set this year apart was the introduction of the new 13 SEER Federal minimum efficiency rating for air conditioning equipment. This is a significant increase from the previous minimum of 10 SEER. Manufacturers had some difficulty supplying all of the new equipment needed. Waiting several weeks for equipment to arrive was not uncommon. Some manufacturers are just now catching up.

The new higher efficiency condensers will provide energy savings; as long as they are installed with a properly matched indoor cooling coil. In the past, a standard 10 SEER condenser would have worked with most older cooling coils. However, most cooling coils that are more than 12 years old, will not work properly with new condensers that are 13 SEER and higher. So, don’t let anyone sell you a new condenser without also installing a matched cooling coil.

In addition, if you do replace a condenser that was using the old Freon R-22, the replacement unit must use the same refrigerant – if the existing indoor coil is used. Since production of equipment using R-22 Freon will cease in 2010, the wiser choice would be to switch to equipment that uses the new refrigerant (R-410a) whenever any of the components need to be replaced. R-410a has been used for more than ten years, and has proven to be an excellent replacement for Freon R-22.

I would like to thank all of you who have sent e-mails, stopped by our Spooktacular booth, or attended any of our Homeowner Workshops. I wish all of you Happy Holidays and a healthy and prosperous 2007! The Workshops will resume next month after a much-deserved break during the holiday season. I would also like to thank all of the people at The North Valley Regional Chamber Of Commerce for their continual assistance and support.

For even more detailed information about heating and air conditioning, join us at our first Homeowners Workshop for 2007. It will be on Saturday, January 20th. Any questions will be addressed, so bring your list. There is no cost, so bring your friends, neighbors, and relatives. If you are interested in attending, call Alex at (818) 886-2600 to make a reservation, as space is limited. Join us for coffee and a snack for a couple of hours and you’ll take home a few extra calories, and some really useful information.

Jim Berry was a heating and air conditioning service technician prior to becoming a Sales Consultant for Kahn Air Conditioning. Kahn hosts free monthly workshops to help homeowners learn more about heating and air conditioning systems.
For questions regarding heating or air conditioning, send an e-mail to
Jim at jberry@kahnair.com.

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