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The key to a comfortable home this summer is proper air flow

It’s a hot, hazy summer day. You’re keeping cool while cooking indoors, shuffling outside to bring food to your guests. Suddenly, your A/C unit stops working, leaving you with no relief while cooking in a hot kitchen. The culprit? Dirty air filters that you neglected to change at the turn of the season. This is why you should call an HVAC specialist to check up on things.

Ensuring your home is comfortable in the hot, hazy months of summer means ensuring it has proper air flow. We spoke with David Martino of Martino HVAC, a heating, air conditioning and indoor air quality specialist servicing the Greater Toronto Area, about the causes of poor air flow. “Good air flow is to home comfort as cash flow is to business. No flow means no go,” says Martino.

Some of the most common causes of poor air flow include:

Debris blocking the air conditioner

After a long winter, it’s not uncommon for sticks, leaves and grass to build up around the outdoor condensing unit. Even the springtime can wreak havoc on these machines. “When people cut their lawns, sometimes tufts of grass will blow into their condensing unit,” says Martino. This debris affects the way the unit functions, causing it to work harder to achieve a comfortable indoor air climate. To prevent this, Martino HVAC recommends inspecting the unit before turning it on, removing any sticks and using a garden hose to clean dirt and grass off the unit.

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Dirty furnace filters

A filter clogged with dust and dirt means your furnace will have to work harder to function properly. Dirt can also get sucked into the furnace and build up on the blower, causing it to be inefficient.

Martino recommends changing furnace filters every two to four months, depending on the size of the filter and warns failing to replace filters can void your manufacturer’s warranty. “Not changing filters can be seen as poor maintenance,” he says.

Adjusting dampers

We all have that one room in the house – a guest bedroom for example – that doesn’t get used very often. While you may think closing dampers will save energy, Martino says this can cause air flow problems. “HVAC systems are sized to blow air through all of its runs at the same time,” he says. Blocking several dampers can restrict air flow and could cause the system to run inefficiently.

Not only that, but if your home is experiencing excessive humidity or dryness, you’ll want to leave dampers open to allow air to properly flow through your home.

Homeowner Tip: Martino HVAC has a really neat troubleshooting guide for homeowners. It poses both problems and potential solutions to try out before you contact an HVAC expert!

An improperly sized unit

An air conditioning unit that is too large will cool the house very rapidly, but won’t remove the humidity from the home. “People feel humidity more than they feel temperature,” says Martino. “Humid rooms are uncomfortable.” For this reason, Martino HVAC has invested in advanced sizing technologies to ensure homes are equipped with equipment fit for their space, ensuring occupants are as comfortable as they can be.

Want to learn more about Martino HVAC and why you should hire them for your heating and air needs? Take a look at this video:

Did you know? Martino HVAC has been voted contractor of the year TWICE by the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD)? And they provide clients with environmentally friendly products designed to keep your home and the environment healthy!

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Concerned about air flow in your home? Have an experienced technician from Martino HVAC do an inspection. They’ll be able to identify any problems in your home and how to fix it with the right tools and equipment.

More in Heating & Air Conditioning

It’s almost 30 degrees out! Is your A/C ready for the heat wave?

How to: keep your home’s HRV in working order



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