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Installing Your HVAC System: An Interview with Brooke Kalinauskas of Conditioned Air Systems, Inc.

By Brooke Kalinauskas

Tell us a little bit about your company and its foundation.

In 1983, Conditioned Air Systems (CAS) began with eight employees and a determination to lead the way in heating, ventilation and air conditioning for residential, commercial and industrial customers in Northeast Georgia. Having grown tenfold since then, Conditioned Air Systems still challenges our employees to maintain this high standard. With expertise in every aspect of HVAC- including design, AC sales, fabrication, installation, service, maintenance programs, energy management and more ? we are honored that CAS customers have made us among the largest and most successful companies in our field. Call For Fast Service -770.536.7509 Servicing All North East Georgia. Including Athens, Flowery Branch, Gainesville, Buford, Lawrenceville, Norcross, Atlanta and everywhere in between.

What components make up an HVAC system?

There are three main types of HVAC systems (all electric, gas/electric, and dual fuel) which have different components depending on which system you have. The most common HVAC system in Georgia is a total electric Heat Pump (HP) system. The main components in a HP system are:
(2) coils- 1 condenser and 1 evaporator
(2) motors-1 blower motor which moves air throughout your home and 1 condenser motor which blows air out the top of the unit
(1) reversing valve which reverses refrigerant flow during heating and cooling swaps
(1) set of emergency strip heaters which are used during cold weather or during the units defrost cycle
(1) compressor which compresses refrigerant vapor
(1) liquid line refrigerant filter
(1) Thermal Expansion Valve (TXV) or piston which meters the refrigerant
(1) one set of controls which operate all of these mechanical components in harmony
(1) air filter which filters the air in your home
(1) air delivery system also known as duct work

The second most popular system in Georgia is a gas/electric system. This type of system has all the same components as a HP except: the reversing valve and electric strip heaters are not needed in this type of system and they are replaced with a gas burner section that includes a heat exchanger. The heat exchanger is where combustion occurs and transfer heat to the air and then throughout your home. Also, with the combustion of fossil fuels venting is required on gas/electric systems where it is not required on a HP system.

The third type of system is a dual fuel system. This system uses components from both the HP and the Gas/Electric system and combines them. A dual fuel system has all the components like a HP and gas/electric system but this system does not have an emergency strip heater. This system has an outdoor temperature sensor in the control system which swaps the system to the gas furnace when needed. This is somewhere between 35 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit depending on the customers comfort needs.

What are the benefits of installing an HVAC system into one's home?

It is hard to believe that there are still homes in Georgia without central heating and air systems. The biggest benefit is being able to be comfortable, especially during the hot and cold seasons. There is nothing worse than trying to sleep while sweating or seeing you breath inside your home when you wake up.

What are some ways homeowners can prepare for this process?

We take every precaution when it comes to protecting the customer's property. What really helps is when the homeowner clears a path to the equipment and removes items which may hinder access. We pride ourselves in making this process as stress less as possible for the homeowner.

What are the steps for installing an HVAC System?

Once the customer has agreed to replace the system our sales team orders the equipment and sets up the installation date. Upon arrival on the agreed upon date our installation crew greets the customers and goes over the job with them again. We lay down mats to protect the homeowner's carpet and flooring and also wear shoe covers when needed for added protection. The crew of two usually splits up at this point. One technician is disassembling the indoor portion of the system while the other is removing the refrigerant from the system at the outdoor section so that we can send it back to a recycling organization. Once the refrigerant is reclaimed both section are cut loose and removed. We then place the new pieces of equipment in place and start reconnecting them. This includes all high voltage electrical, gas, venting, duct, drain and control connections. Once this portion of the installation is complete it is time to start the new system. We go through our start-up procedures/checklist to ensure all the items are checked and double checked. Once the project is complete and clean we go over the new system with the customer and answer any questions they may have about their new system.

Do you recommend a homeowner attempting to install the system themselves?

We do not recommend that homeowners attempt installing the system themselves. There are numerous reasons why but here are a few major reasons:
1. When completing this type of work permits with the county are required and you must have a HVAC license in the state where the work is being completed. If you do obtain this permit you are susceptible to fines from the county.
2. Most manufacturers of HVAC equipment will void any warranty if not installed by a qualified HVAC contractor.
3. The tools and material needed to complete this work will cost about $2,750.00.

What's the best way for people to get in contact with you and your company?

Phone 770-534-5121
Web Site: www.conditionedairsystems.com

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