Residential & Commercial Service and Repair


General HVAC System F.A.Q

Harmonic HVAC is your local Oswego area expert for heating service, cooling service, IAQ, garage heater service, water heating service and more. We've been helping homeowners and business owners with their repairs, installations and maintenance for years, and we believe answering some of questions about your comfort systems would be helpful. Read below to learn about the systems you use everyday in your home or business, and learn some helpful troubleshooting tips for the future.

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How much does it cost to replace a Furnace?



The furnace price will depend on the size of your home. Furnaces will vary in size and are specific to the square footage of the space being heated. Prices also vary based on AFUE which is the efficiency rating of the unit. Furnace efficiency ranges from 80% to 97%. A lower efficiency 80% furnace is less expensive, but wastes more gas and energy, equal to about 20% of your energy cost going up the chimney. A higher efficiency 96% or 97% furnace is more expensive but more efficient, only allowing about 3-4% of your energy cost escaping. Lower efficient furnaces normally have 1-stage of gas and electric blower motor, so it's either ON or OFF. But if you upgrade to a 2-stage or Variable Speed option, your system can run at a lower RPM, saving on both GAS and ELECTRIC utility bills. High-efficient systems will also allow for utility rebates that make the upgrade easier on the check book. Financing is available as well. Ask about seasonal rebates, discounts, and same-as-cash financing.

How much does it cost to replace a Air Conditioner?



The Air Conditioner price will depend on the size of your home. Air Conditioners will vary in size and are specific to the square footage of the space being cooled. Prices also vary based on SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating) which is the efficiency rating of the unit. AC efficiency ranges from 13 to 20 SEER. A lower efficiency 13 SEER Air Conditioner is less expensive, but wastes more electricity cooling your space. A higher efficiency 16 or 20 SEER Air Conditioner is more expensive but far more efficient, saving an estimated $21+ per month on electricity alone. If you really want high-efficient Air Conditioning, ask about the 2-Stage options. High-efficient A/C systems will also allow for utility rebates that make the upgrade easier on the check book. Financing is available as well. Ask about seasonal rebates, discounts, and same-as-cash financing.

How much does it cost to replace a Hot Water Heater?



There are two primary sizes of hot water heaters for residential applications, a 40 gallon or a 50 gallon. Some higher volume homes, that have more bathrooms, and more family members might want to consider doubling up and installing TWO 40 gallon hot water heaters, for more hot water volume... so that mom still has hot water for her bath, after all of the kids are cleaned up. There is a higher-efficiency option as well, which is the Power-Vented model. It helps recirculate the heat, and like furnace efficiency, less of your gas is leaking out of the exhaust pipe. Sometimes the water shut-off valve is corroded internally, and does not allow the water to stop flowing (to the hot water heater) so we may not know if it needs to be replaced until we are working on the system and cut the pipe. There is normally a small fee to replace the valve, and the water to the whole house will need to be turned off while the valve is replaced. To avoid emergency Hot Water Heater service calls, make sure you have your hot water heater serviced every year with your Furnace and replace it before it fails. Normally every 10-12 years. Believe me, you don't want to wait for it to fail...

How much does it cost to install a Garage Heater?



Garage Heaters, like other heating systems, are sized according to the space they need to heat. Give us a call to exact pricing for your specific garage space. The garage heater is great for utilizing the garage space during these cold winter months. It allows you to store things inside that need to be temperature controlled, keeps fluids from freezing, and doesn't your CAR deserve a nice warm place to rest as well? I work in my garage a lot, so having a place that is warm and thermostat controlled is a blessing, not to mention, my metal tools and batteries are not FREEZING cold.

Why should I purchase a HUMIDIFIER for my home or office?



Health experts have a recommended humidity that is healthy for homes and offices. During winter months, when the furnace is running, it is also drying the air, and removing the humidity. The lack of humidity causes our sinuses to dry up, sometimes causing bloody noses, sinus congestion, dry throat, and of course static electricity. Do you ever get shocked when turning on the lights? That's because the air is too dry. The lack of humidity ALSO dries out wood floors, wood furniture, and causes other problems in the home. THE SOLUTION is to add a humidifier to the HVAC systems. This will help keep the humidity in the healthy range. A healthy humidity is around 35%.

Why should I purchase a DE-Humidifier for my home or office?



Have you ever heard the expression "it's not the HEAT, it's the HUMIDITY"? OR "it's a DRY heat"? Well, HUMIDITY holds HEAT. More humidity in the air, even inside your house, makes it FEEL hotter. So what that means is that, if you have more humidity in your home during the summer months, it will FEEL even hotter inside. If you have a dehumidifier installed in your home, it will help eliminate the humidity in your home making it feel COOLER, and you can keep your thermostat set at a lower temperature. This will allow you to SAVE electricity to COOL the home. Yes, more humidity means a warmer feel, and lower humidity means a cooler feel. Save money during summer months by adding a dehumidifier to keep your home cooler. (In the Winter, you want to add a Humidifier to add humidity to make it feel WARMER.) Pair a dehumidifier with a humidifier and smart thermostat or air purifier for a "Smarter, Healthier, and more Efficient" home. Bundle accessories over $1000 and finance your purchase. Ask for more details. Enjoy the season.

How much does an Air Purifier / Air Cleaner cost for my home or office?



There are SO many choices for AIR PURIFICATION in the home or office setting, so the price will vary quite a bit as well to add an inline Air Purifier / Air Cleaner to your HVAC system. There are some basic air cleaner models that do nothing more than make your system smell nice. Other air cleaners use ION technology to send +/- IONs into your space to reduce airborne particulates. (This is similar to magnetizing the particulates, causing them to join together in the air, making them heavier, and falling to the ground, no longer airborne.) Air purifier models using UV light and/or cold plasma technology are more effective because they actually KILL virus cells, dust mites, and other LIVING particles.

The 2 top Air Purifier brands that we recommend (and work REALLY well) are the RGF "Reme-Halo" & "Reme-LED" which combines UV light and ION technology IN ADDITION to other benefits mentioned above to kill virus AND reduce airborne particulates. The Nu-Calgon "i-Wave" combines ION technology with Cold Plasma to provide a similar result. So many choices and technologies, but we have what you need. Pair an Air Purifier with a 4" media filter kit to maximise your air cleaning goals. Add a humidifier and/or smart thermostat for a "Smarter, Healthier, and more Efficient" home. Bundle accessories over $1000 and finance your purchase. Ask for more details. Enjoy the season.

How do I choose an air filter for my furnace? What furnace air filter should I buy/use?



Basic AIR FILTERS come in a variety of sizes and filtration options. It's VERY important to NOT use a filter that will RESTRICT air flow to your furnace. It can actually HURT the system and destroy the motor. It will cause the motor to work extra hard to pull air through the return system, and can cause the system to overheat, causing cracks in the heat exchanger. (All of these are expensive fixes.) The MERV rating on the filter is what is used to reference the "efficiency" value of the filter to dust and particles. It also is a measure of the amount of resistance from the filter. Higher the MERV, higher the resistance. Some micro filters used for allergies and pollen have very high MERV values (MERV 13), however, as mentioned above, these can actually DESTROY your furnace. Some choose the complete opposite and use the cheap fiberglass filters (2 MERV). Those don't do ENOUGH to filter particles or dust, and allow too much to pass, and allow dust build-up on the motor and components, which also causes overheating and other issues, leading to failure and emergency service calls. We have a better idea.

When choosing an AIR FILTER for your furnace, we recommend choosing an INEXPENSIVE PLEATED filter with a rating around 7 MERV and changing it more often. By using a standard white, pleated, air filter with a lower MERV rating, and changing the filter more often, you will still collect the smaller particles and allergens, without choking the return air system, and without causing stress to your furnace or overheating of the heat exchanger. Again, choose a less expensive pleated filter, but change it more often. This will help save money AND provide proper filtration.

We HIGHLY recommend upgrading to a 4" media filter system (like the Honeywell F100 kit) to provide a higher MERV rating, but with less resistance to the system. They are specifically designed to capture more particles and allergens, but have less "static drag" on the system. We often provide this UPGRADE for FREE when installing a new system, because we believe so highly in the technology and results. Ask how you can get a FREE 4" filter kit with YOUR new Furnace & A/C Combo installation. Pair an Honeywell F100 4" media filter kit with a "Reme-Halo" or i-Wave "Air Purifier" to maximise your air cleaning goals. Add a humidifier and/or smart thermostat for a "Smarter, Healthier, and more Efficient" home. Bundle accessories over $1000 and finance your purchase. Ask for more details. Enjoy the season.

Why should we install a Wi-Fi Smart Programmable Thermostat in our home or office?



We believe SO highly in the effectiveness and efficiency of smart programmable THERMOSTATS, that we believe everyone should have one in every application. We have them in our shop and our homes. A programmable thermostat allows you to save a LOT of money by not allowing the HVAC system to heat or cool a space when nobody is there. By adding wi-fi technology, it also allows you to SEE and SET temperatures when nobody is there. In other words, you can program on the fly. For a home OR office, you can see what the current temperature is in your space, and change it based on use. If you're on vacation for a week, change it. If you're going to be home all day, change it. If you or the wife is cold (or hot) in bed at night, and you don't feel like going downstairs to change the temperature, you can do it from your phone, while never getting out of bed. Sometimes in an office scenario, people want to change the thermostat temperatures up or down all the time. By installing a programmable thermostat, you can better control those temperatures throughout the day, and you can monitor your thermostat with your mobile phone or tablet, during office hours or over long weekends. In conclusion, a Wi-Fi Smart Programmable Thermostat is a great tool to CONTROL COSTS at home, or in the office. Add a humidifier, 4" air filter, plus an air purifier / air cleaner for a "Smarter, Healthier, and more Efficient" home and office. Bundle accessories over $1000 and finance your purchase. Ask for more details. Enjoy the season!