How do ductless cooling systems work and where are they a good fit?

Ductless systems are a popular alternative to traditional HVAC systems here in McComb, Mississippi. These systems combine versatility with better efficiency and comfort. But, just what are ductless systems and how do they work? In this article, we’ll review the benefits of upgrading to a ductless cooling system and what factors make your home a good fit for ductless.

A wall-mounted ductless cooling system in a home here in McComb, MS.How do ductless cooling systems work?

As you might have already guessed, “ductless” systems do not need ductwork to operate. This sets them apart from air conditioners, heat pumps, furnaces, and other centrally driven systems that use ducts to distribute cooled and heated air to each of the rooms of your home.

In contrast, ductless systems have at least two components:

  • An outdoor condenser
  • An indoor blower

The only thing connecting these two sides of the system is a refrigerant line. Ductless systems, like heat pumps, are in the business of transporting heat energy from one place to another. In the summer, that means that the refrigerant in the indoor blower unit absorbs heat before moving the heat energy outside to the condenser, where it’s released. This cooling cycle continues until enough heat energy has been removed from your home to lower the temperature to what you set your thermostat dial to. In the winter—again, just like a heat pump—the system reverses, using the same process to draw heat energy out of the air outside (it’s there, even on the coldest days here in Mississippi) and pump it into your home.

The indoor unit—typically wall-mounted, but also sometimes ceiling or floor-mounted—acts as the blower, sending the cooled (or heated) air into your home to make things comfortable. In a typical home, this happens through the ducts. Ductless systems cut out the middleman and deliver air straight into the room with you.

What is a “mini-split?”

Naturally, having just one indoor blower unit probably isn’t enough to cool down your entire home. Ductless systems are designed to be networked in a “mini-split” configuration. This means that multiple indoor blower units can be connected by refrigerant lines to a single outdoor condenser. Homeowners use mini-split ductless systems to put cooling / heating in each room of their home.

Zoned comfort makes a big difference

This “zoned” approach is impressive for several reasons. First and foremost, it’s energy-efficient. With a traditional HVAC system and ductwork, a surprising amount of cooling and heating is lost in the ducts on the way to the living spaces of your home. This means your air conditioner, heat pump, or furnace has to work harder (and expend more and more energy) to get the home’s temperature to where you want it and overcome those losses. While there are steps homeowners with ducts can take to improve their energy-efficiency (such as having their ducts professionally sealed—a lot of energy is lost through small cracks or pinholes), some of that energy loss is just inherent in the design.

Ductless is different. No ducts means no inherent energy loss through ductwork. By delivering heating and cooling right where it’s needed, ductless systems are able to operate more efficiently than normal HVAC systems.

A multi-split and zoned comfort approach take things even further. Imagine that you and your family are spending the evening in the kitchen of your two-story home, cooking dinner and putting together a puzzle. You can set the system to cool down the kitchen where you all are currently, but otherwise not have the other ductless indoor units in the living room and bedrooms running. This means incredible energy savings: you’re paying to cool down one room instead of several.

Is your home right for a ductless system?

We’ll go ahead and answer this one: yes. That’s because ductless systems can go in any type of home. Some homeowners with existing ductwork and other HVAC systems even have our team install a ductless mini-split to give added comfort in their homes.

If you have a home without existing ductwork, a ductless system is exactly what you want. Installing ducts can be expensive, incredibly invasive, or both. In many historic homes here in Mississippi, there are regulations against the major renovations needed to install ducts. Finally, there are some spaces—from garages to non-connected suites on your property—that just don’t make sense for ductwork.

Get a free in-home estimate from our team

At Southern Air, our mission is to bring comfort to the homeowners of McComb and surrounding communities. We want to help you find the best system for your home, whether that’s a ductless setup or a traditional air conditioner. That’s why the best place to start your search for comfort is by giving our team a call for a free in-home estimate. For this estimate, we’ll send out one of our experienced techs to meet with you and talk about your home comfort needs. We’ll also take the measurements needed to match you with the perfect system and give you an upfront, accurate quote.

If your home needs a new cooling or heating system, don’t forget to ask our team about our financing offers, available with approved credit.

Here are 4 reasons why you should upgrade your AC this summer

As your home’s air conditioner gets older, it starts to cost you more money. First, it’s less efficient than it was when it was new, so you’ll see rising energy bills—especially relative to what your neighbors are paying for the same cooling. Second, older air conditioners are more likely to break down, which means you have to pay for repairs. If you’re experiencing either of these scenarios, this summer might be the one where you should upgrade your AC. We’ll explain more in this new article.

Your friends here at Southern Air offer free in-home estimates on new Carrier and Trane systems here in McComb. Call us to schedule yours or to learn more about our lineup of new air conditioners.

A Southern Air technician checks the refrigerant on an air conditioner here in McComb.Why should you upgrade your AC this summer?

#1. You want lower energy bills

Old AC units can be very expensive. Even if the unit was efficient when you had it installed, over time it can lose that efficiency due to leaks or other problems. The advancements in HVAC technology has resulted in air conditioners that require much less electricity to cool your home. This means that a new unit can cool a lot faster for a lot less money.

#2. You want increased efficiency

If you replace your current AC unit, you could use 30 to 50% less energy. This smaller energy footprint is very important to many people who understand that more power usage equates to more carbon emissions. Protecting the environment often means making small changes, as this is one that will benefit both you and Mother Earth. You’ll feel good knowing that you’re doing your part to improve the environment for future generations.

Beyond that, lower energy use means lower energy bills for you and your family for many summers to come. Those savings can really add up, which might help convince you to make the switch from your older, less-efficient air conditioner.

#3. You are tired of endless repairs

An older air conditioner is more likely to break down than a new one. As cooling systems age, more and more can start to go wrong—especially without regular maintenance from the certified, experienced techs here at Southern Air. Parts don’t work quite as well as they once did and there’s the possibility of metal fatigue or corrosion. All of this adds up to more frequent breakdowns in the summer, which are not only stressful but also potentially expensive, especially when considered cumulatively.

#4. You want to increase your property value

Whether or not you’re considering selling your home, a new AC unit can increase your home’s value by up to 12%, according to the National Association of Realtors. When compared to homes similar to yours with old units, sellers are more likely to purchase your home with a brand-new AC system. While an upgrade may seem like a big investment right now, it can pay off big time in the future.

Call Southern Air for a free in-home estimate

At Southern Air, we offer free in-home estimates on new Carrier and Trane systems here in McComb and the surrounding communities of southwest Mississippi. If you’re ready to make the switch to a new cooling system this summer, call us and talk to us about upgrading your AC this summer.

Here’s how to tell if your AC needs Freon

As you feel the heat and humidity of the Mississippi summer, you’ll be grateful that your air conditioner is keeping your home cool from the Southern heat. Make sure that your air conditioner is ready for the summer ahead by scheduling an AC tune-up from the team at Southern Air. One common question we get from homeowners: “How do I tell if my AC needs Freon?” In this article, we’ll review what Freon is, what is actually used, and how to know if your air conditioner needs a recharge.

To schedule your AC tune-up here in McComb and Southwest Mississippi, contact our team today.

Schedule an AC tune-up with Southern Air, and our technician can tell if your AC needs Freon.

Schedule an AC tune-up with Southern Air, and our technician can tell if your AC needs Freon.

What is “Freon,” anyway?

For decades, homeowners have been hearing about “Freon” refrigerant. So much so that “Freon”—a trademark for a brand-name refrigerant known in the industry as R-22—has stuck with the public.

Using “Freon” is actually a misnomer, since R-22—the refrigerant used for decades in home AC systems—is actually on its way out. If your older air conditioner still uses Freon, you’ll have to start paying more and more for it, since it hasn’t been manufactured since 2010 due to environmental concerns. Its replacement, R-410A, is better for the environment and most air conditioners purchased and installed after 2010 use this new type of refrigerant.

Still, even with R-410A now widely in use, most people will still continue to call it “Freon.”

How do I know if I need more refrigerant?

Your Southern Air technician will check the levels of R-22 or R-410A when we perform our AC tune-up on your air conditioner. However, here are some other symptoms of low refrigerant levels:

#1. Warm air blowing through the vent

The most obvious sign is that you will no longer feel cold air coming out of the vents, as refrigerant is what cools the air down. Because your house never gets cooler, your thermostat may show the indoor temperature as never going down to what you have the AC set at.

#2. Your utility bill keeps increasing

Low coolant levels will make your AC run longer and work harder. Your utility bill is likely to increase much more than is normal, so be sure to check the usage and cost each month to see if they spike. A higher bill can also be from a different issue, but either way, you want it fixed.

#3. Frost building up on the unit

The only reason why Freon would be low is due to a leak from a puncture, corrosion, a factory defect, or poor installation. You can tell there is a leak when there is frost on the unit’s parts. Other signs include the following:

  • Tiny bubbles in the evaporator coils
  • A hissing sound
  • A bad odor coming out

Freon (either R-22 or R-410A) can be dangerous to inhale, especially if it enters your home, so call Southern Air immediately if you smell something foul.

Can you recharge Freon on your own?

DIY skills are a popular way these days to save money and learn new skills. However, certain projects require the work of professionals, and refilling (or recharging) refrigerant is one of them.

As mentioned before, the substance can be harmful. Also, it not only takes adding more coolant but also finding and repairing the leak, as well as checking for any other issues. For example, leaks often cause damage to the compressor.

Insufficient or incorrect repairs will only lead to trouble again down the road. Instead, if you suspect you have a refrigerant leak, call Southern Air for AC repairs here in McComb.

Schedule your AC maintenance with our team

Just like your vehicle needs regular tune-ups and oil changes, your air conditioning unit requires consistent, seasonal maintenance in order for it to operate at maximum efficiency and not break down. That’s where Southern Air comes in! We offer AC tune-ups and maintenance here in McComb and surrounding communities. In this article, we’ll review just some of the reasons you should call our team to schedule your AC maintenance this spring.

Schedule your AC maintenance with Southern Air this spring.

Call Southern Air to schedule your AC maintenance this spring. Our expert techs will make sure your cooling system is ready for the summer ahead!

Save money on utilities

Over time, your AC filters become dirty and clogged. This results in the unit working harder than necessary to keep your home cool. Maintaining your unit with the help of our HVAC professionals means you get to enjoy lower energy bills each month.

A trusted team

Southern Air is trusted by customers in McComb and surrounding areas to deliver excellent service. Here’s what sets us apart from the rest:

  • 24/7 emergency services
  • Experienced and friendly technicians
  • Local HVAC company since 1994

Homeowners across Southwest Missouri rely on us for AC maintenance–you can too.

Prevent problems from getting worse

Many people do not even realize their AC is experiencing issues until it breaks down. A malfunctioning AC unit is frustrating and inconvenient, especially when it stops working during hot weather. That’s why we suggest preventative maintenance. Our techs will fix problems before they become even more costly and troublesome.

Better air quality

Your home’s indoor air quality may be compromised if you haven’t had your AC unit cleaned or maintained recently. This pollution can cause various health issues and discomfort. Our HVAC technicians will do what’s necessary to improve your air quality.

Comprehensive services

Here at Southern Air, we provide robust maintenance that ensures your entire system is in good working order. Here are some examples of what our maintenance entails:

  • Cleaning or replacing the air filter to improve efficiency.
  • Cleaning the condenser and evaporator coils to improve airflow.
  • Cleaning the ducts to improve air quality.
  • Clearing out the condensate drain channels to prevent excess moisture from creating mold.
  • Checking the refrigerant levels, testing for leaks, and replacing any refrigerant if necessary.
  • Checking up on the electrical system, tightening and cleaning connections, and inspecting electric terminals.

Call Southern Air to schedule your AC maintenance this spring!

You can trust that we’ll do everything possible to keep your AC unit in the best condition possible. To schedule your tune-up here in McComb, contact our team today.

Here’s why you should schedule a heat pump tune-up this spring

It may not feel like it in some parts of America, but spring is just around the corner with summer following soon after. The birds are singing, flowers are blossoming, and it’s time to schedule a heat pump tune-up. Your heat pump works hard to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Treat it right with annual maintenance from the professionals here at Southern Air. To schedule your heat pump tune-up this spring, give us a call.

Schedule your heat pump tune-up this spring with Southern Air!

A heat pump tune-up can ensure that your home gets great cooling throughout the summer.

Benefits of a heat pump tune-up

Not convinced? Here are just a few reasons you should schedule a heat pump tune-up this spring.

  • Unlike air conditioning units, heat pumps work all year round with minimal downtime between seasons. Doing twice the work—heating and cooling—means twice the wear-and-tear. Because of this, a regular tune-up helps to ensure everything is in good working order.
  • Regular tune-ups also help ensure the system is working effectively and efficiently. They also extend the lifespan of the unit, which means you can save on the cost of replacing the entire system for another few years.
  • Dirty air filters can lead to the development of respiratory illnesses, particularly in seniors and children. By ensuring these are cleaned or changed routinely, you preserve your family’s health and your peace of mind.

Benefits of a professional tune-up

Many items on a professional checklist for a heat tune-up can be completed by handy men and women in the home who prefer to do things on their own. However, some things are better left to the professionals. Here are some of the benefits of hiring professionals to conduct a tune-up.

  • Hiring professionals provide peace of mind in knowing that the work is being completed by trained and experienced workers.
  • Work completed by licensed professionals usually include a warranty. Companies like Southern Air Heating & Cooling are also insured, ensuring that if anything goes wrong, you’re covered.
  • Completing technical work on your home or allowing an unlicensed worker to do so may void certain provisions in your home insurance.

Contact us

If you can’t remember the last time you scheduled a heat pump tune-up, now is the time to rectify that. Contact us to schedule maintenance work on your heat pump this spring.

Air duct cleaning can help you and your family breathe easier

The EPA advises that indoor air has anywhere from 2-5 times the number of airborne contaminants as outdoor air. From pollen to pet dander, microscopic particles float freely and circulate throughout the home via the air ducts, where they get stuck and build up over time. In addition to posing a potential health risk, this particulate buildup can reduce airflow through the HVAC system, making the unit work harder and use more energy. Routinely scheduling air duct cleaning can help to minimize indoor air pollution while reducing your energy costs.

Southern Air offers air duct cleaning services here in Southwest Mississippi. To schedule your next air duct cleaning, give us a call today!

Sources of contamination

Schedule air duct cleaning services on an annual basis.The buildup of dust, dander, pollen, and other airborne contaminants in ductwork also provides an environment that promotes the growth of bacteria, mildew, and mold. Pollen and fungal spores that spread through ductwork can aggravate allergies and harm the respiratory system, particularly in children and the elderly.

The National Air Duct Cleaners Association recommends a professional air duct cleaning every few years, but you may want to schedule one more frequently if you are concerned about your home’s indoor air quality. Some indicators that you should consider include:

  • Family members that suffer from asthma, allergies, or other respiratory symptoms
  • The presence of indoor cats, dogs, or other shedding pets
  • A noticeable stale or musty odor when the HVAC system turns on
  • Family members who smoke
  • Rapid dust buildup on furniture
  • Frequent problems with nasal congestion, headaches, or itchy eyes
  • Moving into a new home
  • Recent remodeling or renovation work

Preventative maintenance

In addition to improving indoor air quality and helping your HVAC equipment perform at its best, scheduling regular air duct maintenance minimizes the risk of hidden leaks, damage, or even a rodent or insect infestation. Having ductwork inspected annually and cleaned as needed helps to prevent small problems from becoming big ones.

Schedule a professional inspection and cleaning today

Whether you’re worried about indoor air pollution, concerned about HVAC performance, or need to schedule your next air duct cleaning, the experienced technicians at Southern Air Heating & Cooling are here to help.

In addition to offering comprehensive cleaning services, we’ll perform a thorough inspection of your home’s ducting system, replace missing or threadbare insulation, and seal any leaks. Contact us today to learn more about our 100% satisfaction guarantee and help your family breathe easier.

Here’s why you should never DIY your heat pump tune-up

The “do-it-yourself” trend for homeowners is mostly positive. Video guides and hardware stores allow you to save money by tackling projects on your own. However, there are limits. For example, you should avoid trying to do your own DIY heat pump tune-up. Here’s why you should trust your heat pump to the technicians at Southern Air instead.

To schedule a heating tune-up this fall, contact the pros here at Southern Air. Our techs are ready to help get your system running right in time for colder weather.

A Furnace Inspection in McComb MSYou could hurt yourself or someone else

Your heat pump is a complicated piece of mechanic equipment that utilizes gas or electricity to keep your home comfortable. They are complex and potentially dangerous devices for untrained people to be opening and configuring.

As a worst-case scenario, if you attempt a DIY tune-up on your heat pump, you could get electrocuted. It’s not worth the risk. Instead, call Southern Air. Our techs know how to fix your heat pump safely.

You could make things worse

Perhaps your heat pump is making strange sounds, not giving off enough heat, or failing to turn on. If you try to fiddle around with it based on an online guide, you make the issue worse because you’re not professionally trained to maintain and repair HVAC equipment. Heat pumps are complicated pieces of machinery and are difficult to understand unless you undergo years of training and field work.

You could create future problems

Even if you can fix a little problem, you still can’t be sure that everything’s fine for the long run. Handling heat pumps and putting all the pieces back together requires careful precision from trained hands. You might feel confident right after conducting a DIY AC tune-up, but an issue may arise down the road.

You could void the warranty

Your heat pump may have a manufacturer’s warranty system in place. Generally, this type of warranty only applies if you have HVAC professionals work on your heat pump. As soon as you pry open your HVAC system and mess around with the heat pump, you may violate your warranty. This means any issues that come up won’t be covered and you’ll have to pay for everything out-of-pocket.

Avoid the DIY solutions and call Southern Air for service

Even if you’re a handyman-type of person or a quick learner, you should resist the temptation to try to fix your heat pump yourself. Instead, if your heat pump is acting up, contact us at Southern Air.

Save money this summer by making your home more energy-efficient

When you save energy, you save money. As the temperature heats up this summer, you want to make sure your home is as energy-efficient as possible, so you don’t end up paying a fortune to keep things cool. The good news is that there are several ways to save money this summer without too much work.

When it comes to home energy savings, achieving greater energy efficiency isn’t hard. We’ve included just a few of the strategies we recommend for making home energy-efficiency and savings a priority.

Pictured: Closing your blinds, in addition to scheduling AC maintenance, can help you save money this summer. For more tips, call Southern Air!Use a programmable thermostat

Are you cooling your home when you aren’t even there? While you shouldn’t shut off your AC system completely when you leave for the day, program your thermostat to keep your home a few degrees warmer. Then, set your system to cool things back down before you get home.

This is a great way to combat those times when you try to turn up the thermostat before you leave, but end up forgetting before you head out the door.

Seal up your house

Small cracks, especially those that exist around your doors and windows, allow cool air to seep out of your home, resulting in the need for your air conditioner to work harder. Go through your home and identify areas where some extra caulking and sealing is needed for greater energy-efficiency. You’ll save money this summer and be glad you did.

A few places to watch for air leaks include where ductwork, plumbing, or electrical wiring comes through the ceiling, floor, walls, or over cabinets.

Close the blinds

While this may seem like a small thing, it can make a big difference when it comes to the energy efficiency of your home. While your home may feel slightly cave-like when the sun is up, closing your blinds, especially in areas that receive direct sunlight, can help keep things cool throughout the day.

If you want to take things a step further, consider adding sun shades to the exterior of your windows. This will also make your home more private during the day and at night.

Make maintenance a priority

The best way to ensure your air conditioner’s energy-efficiency is by having the techs at Southern Air perform maintenance on your system regularly. If it’s been awhile since your last maintenance appointment, call us and we’d be happy to set up a convenient appointment!

Don’t ignore these 5 signs your AC needs immediate service

When it’s summertime here in Mississippi, you can expect brutal heat and high humidity. This extreme weather is part of the price we pay to live in this beautiful state. However, when your air conditioner quits functioning, your comfort level can take a nosedive.

If you can spot the early warning signs of AC trouble, a qualified technician from Southern Air may be able to correct the problem before more costly repairs or even AC replacement is necessary. Here are the top five warning signs you need professional AC repair immediately.

HVAC Repair McComb#1. Your AC is suddenly far noisier

A scratching or squeaking noise probably means a belt has worked itself out of its proper position. The belt will continue slipping until it completely comes off its pulley and possibly causes other damage.

#2. Little or no air is flowing out of the vents

If the airflow is weak or nonexistent, your compressor could be going out, or your ductwork may be torn or blocked. A technician can usually find the problem before overuse damages your system.

#3. Abnormally high electric bills

A sudden spike in your summer utility bill is typical, but if the amount seems excessively high, it could mean an AC problem. The culprit could be a failing compressor or torn or blocked air ducts.

#4. Foul odor is present when system is running

A foul mildew smell coming from the vents when your AC is running could mean fungus is forming in your ductwork. Some forms of mold are hazardous, so address this problem right away.

#5. Unit is leaking moisture

A wet spot around your unit could mean that the condensation drain tube is blocked or broken. However, it could mean that poisonous Freon is leaking from your system, so hire a qualified technician to check it immediately.

Southern Air is ready to help your AC system!

Do not be caught in this Mississippi heat and humidity with a broken-down AC system; Southern Air has proudly serviced local air conditioners here in McComb and Southwest Mississippi since 1994, and we are ready to repair yours.

If you start to notice any of the signs that your system is in need of repair, do not wait until the problem gets worse. Instead, contact us today. Southern Air is ready to send one of our certified and courteous technicians to check your system and advise you on your best course of action.

Top-3 reasons to spend your tax refund on a new air conditioner this spring

Its tax time again and, for those receiving a refund, home improvements are usually at the top of the list homeowners want to take care of. Home improvements can increase your home’s value and your family’s quality of life at the same time.

In this blog, Southern Air Heating & Cooling, your local Carrier dealer here in McComb Mississippi, explains the money-saving benefits of letting us replace your old equipment with an energy-efficient, advanced Carrier air conditioner, heat pump, or furnace.

Call Southern to schedule your free in-home estimate. (601) 684-2072

Check out our special offers or explore our financing options with approved credit. Contact us to get started now!

#1. Are there any tax benefits if I install a new air conditioner?

Unfortunately, in 2018, there is no longer any type of deduction for replacing a residential air conditioner system or even claiming capital improvements to your personal residence.

The good news is if you allow Southern Air Heating & Cooling to install a new air conditioner unit, it’ll likely increase your home’s value and—because it is a permanent fixture to your residence—you benefit from any improvements that add to the value of your home.

Newly installed equipment, such as a Carrier air conditioner, heat pump or furnace, may qualify you for nonbusiness energy tax credits or additional itemized deductions depending on your specific personal tax level.

#2. Why should I replace my current air conditioner?

Spring is the best time to replace your older system with a new high-efficiency Carrier unit. If your current air conditioning system has a SEER rating of 10 or under, you can literally be losing thousands of dollars in operating costs over the life of the unit. To find out the SEER rating of your current AC unit, look for a black and yellow EnergyGuide sticker usually located on the outside shell of your air conditioner.

#3. How much energy and money can I save by upgrading now?

The U.S. government now mandates a minimum SEER rating of 13 on all residential cooling systems built after 2005. Today’s Carrier AC units are the quietest, most-efficient air conditioners on the market and offer an amazing SEER rating of up to 21. If your current air conditioner is has a SEER rating of 13 or below and you upgraded to a new Carrier unit, you could effectively lower your overall power usage on average by about 27%. Depending on your cost-per-kilowatt rate and the size of your home, you could realize an energy savings of close to $300 per year on your bill.

Schedule your free in-home estimate!

Southern Air serves McComb and Southwest Mississippi, and is a proud Carrier Factory-Authorized Dealer. We offer financing options, special offers and expert installation on all our air conditioners, heat pumps, or furnaces.

Get started today! Contact us, or call (601) 684-2072