We at Peck Heating and Air Conditioning have designed this guide to assist in answering any question you may have regarding the operation and maintenance of your heating and air conditioning system.
Table of Contents
Our Service Department has two divisions with different procedures.
New Home Warranty Service provides service to new construction and custom homes. If you are in a new home and need to schedule service, please read Section VII – Calling for Service. This section includes vital information you’ll need when scheduling service. For scheduling, or if you have and emergency or any questions, call (916) 624-0415.
Replacement Warranty & Paid Service services in new installations in older, existing homes during their warranty periods, along with paid service provided to any Peck installation in the Greater Sacramento Area which has past its warranty period.
Note: Replacement and Paid Services are only available in the Greater Sacramento Area. For replacement or paid service information, call (916) 624-0415.
While Peck Heating and Air Conditioning will provide you with the best service for your new system during the original warranty period, extended warranty and preventative maintenance programs are highly recommended. It is advised that your heating and air conditioning system be checked by a professional before each seasonal use. This preventative maintenance philosophy is always less expensive than risking a major breakdown due to lack of maintenance.
Peck Heating and Air Conditioning offers a variety of warranty programs, available for time periods from 12 months to 10 years. Annual service programs are also available, to keep your system clean and running efficiently.
IMPORTANT! SOME EXTENDED WARRANTY PROGRAMS MUST BE PUT IN PLACE WITHIN THE FIRST SIX MONTHS FROM THE DATE OF START UP.
The combination of our preseason service and extended warranty programs will not only help you avoid majors repairs, but will give you the assurance that your system will perform when you need it. Remember, calling for repair service during peak periods of heating or cooling can result in delays in service, so always try the heating or cooling operations of your system prior to the seasonal weather changes.
For information on extended warranty coverage or service contract, call (916) 624-0415.
Again, we hope this guide will assist in answering any question you have about your thermostat or any other part of your heating and air conditioning system. If you have additional questions about your system, please call the appropriate department as listed above.
It is recommended that you try your furnace as soon as you’ve moved in to your new home. To test the furnace, first set the thermostat to HEAT and select a temperature considerably higher than the current room temperature. It may take several minutes for the furnace to come on, and if this is the first time the unit has been operated, there may be some smoke and burning smell form the room registers. These things are normal, so don’t be alarmed. The smoke a burning smell will not last very long.
If your furnace does not start or blows only room temperature or cold air, try turning off the thermostat and waiting a few minutes before trying the process again. Remember to wait a few minutes between on/off cycles.
Your furnace is equipped with an automatic pilot ignition system and may take several attempts (4 to 6) to start on (on the initial start only). The on/off process described above purges air form the gas lines, allowing a pure flow of gas to the pilot ignition system.
Again, do not be alarmed by smoke and/or a burning smell from your registers when using the furnace for the first time. The smoke and smell will dissipate quickly with use.
Your furnace blower (fan) will not come on immediately, and could delay up to roughly 3 minutes. It will continue to run for 3 to 4 minutes after the furnace has been turned off by the thermostat.
Furnaces are generally powered by a standard electrical cord. The circuit breaker for the furnace is located in the main circuit breaker panel. Due to a door lockout switch, the furnace doors must be properly positioned on the unit for the furnace to operate.
Air conditioning fuses are located in the electrical disconnect box, outside the house near the air conditioning equipment. Typically, they are located in a handle type “pull-out” disconnect, but may also be found in the form of an on/off switch or circuit breaker. The fuses in the pullout disconnect must be secured tightly in position to insure operation of the air conditioning equipment.
When checking for bad fuses, you will not be able to visually inspect for a good or bad fuse. A continuity tester is the tool used to check fuses. If you do not have access to a continuity tester, you must replace the fuses with new ones. It is recommended that you keep an extra set of maximum rated fuses on hand. The correct fuse size is listed on the nameplate of the air conditioner, and should also be listed on the inside of the fuse disconnect box. When in doubt of the size needed, use the same size you have just removed from the pullout. Use only time delay dual element fuses, as they are the only type specifically designed for air conditioning equipment. Please note the direction of the pullout when you remove it to check or replace fuses. It is only operational in one direction.
Circuit breakers for the air conditioning equipment are also located in the main circuit breaker panel, and should be labeled as such. Both the furnace and air conditioning circuit breakers must be in the “on position for operation of the equipment. If one of the breakers has tripped off, both twin levers for that breaker must be turned completely to the “off” position, then back to “on to reset them.
The fuses and circuit breakers for your equipment have been installed by an electrical contractor. Peck Heating and Air Conditioning does not replaced and is not responsible for trouble-shooting or resetting of fuses or circuit breakers.
NOTE: A large percentage of service calls are attributed to fuse failure or tripped circuit breakers. This is largely due to voltage interruptions or temporary low voltage in the area. Always check fuses and circuit breaker before calling for service on your equipment, as failure to do so could result in your service call being non-warranty paid service.
The ductwork in your home is designed for “Average Exposure” situations. This means that you may wish to adjust some registers in your home to suit your personal needs and seasonal weather conditions. If one room is to hot during the cooling season, close down other registers slightly to force more air to that room. Also, there has been manual dampers installed at your furnace supply plenum. These dampers are at the beginning of each duct run.
In two story homes, seasonal adjustment of register may be necessary to compensate for the natural tendency of the heat to rise. To offset this factor, you would close off registers upstairs on the winter to force more heat to the first floor, whereas for the cooling season, you will want to close off the first floor registers. Additionally, you may wish to partially close registers on the rooms you don’t spend much time in, forcing more air to the rooms of more frequent use.
To insure adequate airflow and proper operation of your equipment, it is not recommended that more than 30% of the registers on your home be completely closed at one time. It is also important to keep filters clean to insure proper airflow and function of the system.
There are three types of air filters used in heating and air conditioning equipment. Your system will have only one of these three.
The first type of filter is made of a washable material, approximately 1” thick. It is located in the base of your furnace. This filter should be removed and cleaned every 30–45 days, depending on the amount of use your system gets. Remove the filter and flush dirt and dust out with water or water and mild spray cleaner. When cleaning, try to force the dirt out of the filter in the same direction it went in. After the filter has dried, return it to the furnace compartment. Take care to reinstall the furnace door properly, as this will impact the operation of your equipment.
The second type of filter is a disposable, fiberglass filter framed in cardboard. This filter is generally located in the return air grill, either in a wall or the ceiling. This type of filter should be replaced, not cleaned, every 30–45 days. Disposable filters are relatively inexpensive and can be purchased at many grocery, hardware and variety stores. Peck Heating and Air Conditioning does not supply replacement filters, nor is the replacement or cleaning of filters covered by your original labor warranty.
Homeowners as an option can purchase the third type, electrostatic filters. Because of the higher efficiency of electrostatic filter, they must be flushed clean with water every two weeks. Failure to follow this procedure could result in system damage.
The heating and air conditioning system installed in your home has been designed and sized to provide maximum comfort and energy efficiency, as outlined by the State of California Title-24 Energy Requirements.
Listed below are the design assumptions used for calculating the heating and cooling loads for your home:
1) OUTDOOR DESIGN TEMPERATURE:
a) Winter: 0.2% design temperature or 31degrees (Fahrenheit) for Sacramento. This temperature will
be met or exceed 99.8% of the time, all year. Approximately 22 hours per year will fall below
b) Summer: 0.5% design temperature, or 100 degrees (Fahrenheit) Sacramento. This temperature
will be exceeded about 39 hours per year.
2) INDOOR DESIGN TEMPERATURE
a) Winter: 70 degrees indoor, as dictated by the California Energy Commission (CEC).
b) Summer: 78 degrees indoor, with a 4.5 degree swing factor, as dictated by the CEC and FHA.
3) BUILDING CHARACTERISTICS
a) Insulation and physical envelope as per plans: i.e. R-13 walls, R-30 ceiling, dual glaze
b) Windows are assumed to have drapes or mini-blinds. The house is assumed with
the worst possible orientation, usually east facing which would result in the highest
possible cooling solar gains on the structure.
Once a heating and cooling load calculation is done, the resulting loads are analyzed to determine the “tonnage” of the equipment to be installed. According to the ACCA manual “J” a state approved calculation and sizing manual, the cooling equipment capacity should not be less than the calculated load, nor should it exceed the load by more than 15%. The concern for oversizing arises from the fact that it causes a reduction in efficiency, operating cost increases and control over space conditions is lessened. Optimum efficiency and control occur when the equipment operates under full load. Since full load conditions only occur a few hours per year, properly sized equipment operates at oversize capacity and reduced efficiency most of the time. Oversizing the equipment aggravates the situation even more. Slightly undersizing the equipment would be preferable to oversizing, in regard to efficiency and longevity, but space conditions would drift when extremes in weather occur. In practice, a cooling unit may exceed the 15% factor if it is the next largest size available above the cooling load.
A gas furnace should not exceed 1.3 times the sum of the heating load and 10 BTU per square foot. Example: Assume that a 1,000 square foot home has a heating load of 22,350 BTUH, and a cooling load of 20,900 BTUH. The equipment selection could have a maximum heat capacity of 42,055 BTUH and a maximum cooling capacity of 24,035 BTUH. Our selected equipment might be a gas furnace with a heat output of 32,000 BTUH and an air conditioning unit with a cooling capacity of 24,035 BTUH. This selection would provide the best comfort and energy combination, while complying with the code requirements.
Once an equipment selection has been made, the duct system can be designed. We use a HeatCalc program, which calculates the load on a room-by-room basis, then allocates the airflow of the unit (CFM) on a proportional basis to the room loads, so that all rooms have an equal percentage of the excess capacity of the system over the calculated load. The ductwork is then sized to the cooling load for each room, because it requires higher airflow than the heating load.
Armed with an understanding of the design of your air conditioning system, there are some things you can do to best utilize and maintain it.
1) Understand that the system is designed to maintain a temperature, rather than to attain it, during design conditions. You can see that, on a 100-degree day, the system is designed to maintain an indoor temperature of 78 degrees or about 22 degrees differential. If the house were allowed to reach 95 degrees indoors, the unit would be unable to bring the temperature down to 78, because of the tremendous heat load the house and its furnishings would have stored up, which it was not designed for. This means you should not turn the system off during high heat conditions, unless you will be leaving your home for extended periods of time and are willing to wait for the house to cool down. Heating will be slightly better, due to a larger over-size allowance, but is still affected by this principle. Also, realize if outdoor temperature rises above designed conditions, the indoor temperature rises accordingly. An indoor temperature of 83 degrees with an outdoor temperature of 105 degrees would be quite possible.
2) Do not be alarmed if the unit runs continuously during peak conditions. It is designed to do so, and is in fact operating more efficiently for energy consumption and life expectancy if running for prolonged periods rather than cycling on and off frequently.
3) Your duct system is designed for “Average Exposure”, which means that you may need to adjust some registers to suit your personal needs. If one room is too hot during cooling season, close down other registers slightly to force more air to that room. In two story homes, you may need to seasonally adjust register, with more open upstairs in summer and the opposite in the winter, to offset the natural tendency of heat to rise. You may even wish to leave your fan on continuously during peak temperatures, to maintain a more uniform temperature throughout the house.
4) Clean or change filters regularly, every 30-45 days. This increases performance and efficiency.
5) If the outdoor unit does not run, check the circuit breakers and replace the fuses, if needed. Call for service if these measures are not successful
6) It is recommended that a professional perform preventative maintenance annually.
7) Beat the rush! Check your system for heating and cooling operations prior to each season’s change. This will allow for faster service should there be a problem, prior to seasonal busy periods.
8) Refer to your manufacturers and owners’ manuals or other sections of this guide for further information on the operation and maintenance of your system.
9) Do Not Minimize the benefit of window shading devices! Rooms with a large amount of glass on East, West, or Southern exposures are very sensitive to the lack of window coverings. Since all windows are assumed to have coverings, room temperatures will drift if drapes are open when the sun’s rays are directly striking the glass. Light colored drapes or blinds can cut solar heat gain in half, dramatically reducing your cooling bills. Exterior shade screens and reflective coatings can reduce solar heat gain by up to 65%.
(The information contained in this maintenance guide was compiled from PG&E, SMUD and the California Energy Commission publications on Heating & Cooling).
During cooling season, your heat pump will work like any other summer air conditioner. It uses indoor and outdoor coils and a compressor, moving heated air form inside to outside. Fans move air across the coils to circulate the air in the conditioned space. A thermostat turns on the fans and compressor, as cooling is needed. Of course, hotter weather means that more cooling is needed, so your unit will run longer. When the temperature is highest, the unit may run continuously for several hours.
In heating season, the use of two coils is reversed. The outdoor coil picks up heat from the air and the indoor coil releases this heat to warm your home. Colder weather increases the heat needed, and the unit runs longer. In most areas, the temperature will sometimes drop low enough for the heat pump’s capacity, which is known as the system “balance point”. This temperature will vary with each home and location, depending on the heat loss of the home and the size of the heat pump installed.
Below the balance point, the heat pump will run continuously and the auxiliary (electric) heat will be cycled on and off by the thermostat, as needed to assist the heat pump in reaching the desired temperature. Your heat pump will continue to operate efficiently at temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit outdoors.
Because heat pumps operate with much lower air temperature than gas furnaces, the air coming for the room registers may feel cool if it is blowing directly on you. While the air is only 15-30 degrees warmer than the air in your home, it will provide the heat needed to keep your home warm and comfortable.
When the outdoor temperature drops below 45 degrees, frost may start to form on the outdoor coil. You will notice that the heaviest frost build up will occur on damp days when the temperature is between 35 and 40 degrees outdoors. Some heat pumps have an automatic control, which will reverse the system and stop the outdoor fan to defrost the coil when needed. Other units operate with a timer at 45-90 minute intervals, while other s have an electronic control with sensed coil and air temperatures to determine when a defrost cycles needed. These units may go as long as six hours without defrosting. Under certain conditions, the outdoor coil may be almost completely covered with frost. This is normal and means that the unit is operating properly. However, thicker layers of hard, clear ice should not occur. If this does happen, call for service.
While the outdoor coil defrosts, clouds of steam and draining water from the unit can be expected. Both are normal and harmless, though the water draining off the unit should be draining away from the equipment. It is also normal for the outdoor coil unit to make strange hissing and gurgling noises during the defrost cycle.
If you do need to call for service on your gas furnace, heat pump system or air conditioner, please follow the guidelines listed below.
Be sure that fuses, circuit breakers and thermostat have been checked, as described in your Homeowner’s Manual and earlier in this guide. Our most common non-warranty repairs are related to circuit breakers that are tripped off, bad fuses or improperly set thermostats. These types of service are not covered by warranty, and could result in you being charged for your service call.
When placing your request for service, please have ready the name of your subdivision, the builder, your lot number and address. Also provide your move-in date, and a brief but specific description of your service problem.
We require entry to your home in most cases, but do not need anyone to be there, unless we are providing paid service on a C.O.D. basis. If it is inconvenient for you to be home on the day of your service call, please arrange another method of entry; i.e. a key left with a neighbor, subdivision staff or sales office staff, or under the front mat. We can also arrange to call you at work ½ to 1 hour before your call so that you can come home just long enough to let us in. Because it is impossible to know how long each repair will take, appointments for specific times are not available.
Things you can do on your own:
1) Check fuses and circuit breakers, insuring their replacement or resetting, if needed.
2) Make sure all doors and panels are in place.
3) Clean or replace filters regularly, every 30 – 45 days.
4) Make sure that the thermostat is set for the proper function and temperature.
5) Make sure the gas valve and/or power supply to the system is on.
6) Check room register, making sure they are adjusted, as you desire.
7) Make sure the outdoor unit air circulation is not restricted. It should be cleaned regularly with a garden hose and kept free of
dirt, leaves, grass, etc. Do not cover outdoor unit.
8) Read the Homeowner’s Manual. By doing these things yourself, you can save money. Many unnecessary service calls result
in the Service Technician doing what you can do yourself.
Peck Will Not Be Responsible For:
1) Normal maintenance, as outlined in the Homeowner’s Manual. This includes cleaning or replacement of filters, cleaning or lubrication of system components.
2) Failure to start due to voltage conditions, blown fuses, open circuit breakers, or other damages due to the inadequacy or interruption of electrical or gas services. Homes with gas heat require that all gas lines be free of air.
3) Damage or repairs needed as a consequence of misapplication, abuse, unauthorized servicing by an unauthorized dealer, or unauthorized alterations or improper operation, as outlined in the Homeowner’s Manual. The above could result in termination of the Peck warranty.
4) Damage as a result of floods, winds, fires, lighting, accidents, corrosive atmosphere or other conditions beyond the control of Peck.
5) Electricity or fuel costs, or increases in electricity or fuel costs for any reason whatsoever, including additional or unusual use of supplemental electric heat.
BEFORE WE CAN RESPOND:
Owner must agree to pay for repair if any of the above items are the reason for service.
INITIAL PARTS AND LABOR WARRANTY
The Peck installation is warranted to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for a period of one year for the date of original occupancy or close of escrow, whichever occurs first. The replacement of any part assumes the unused portion of this warranty
Please see the Honeywell operation manual for programming and operation instructions.
1) Your Honeywell thermostat will only operate when three AAA batteries or one AA are installed. If LO BATT indicator is on,
replace the old battery.
2) With the HEAT/COOL/OFF switch in the OFF position, remove the front cover of the thermostat with a coin or screwdriver
inserted in the slot on the upper left side of the cover.
3) Only Fresh, AA alkaline batteries should be used to replace old thermostat batteries. Remember to install using the
correct polarity. Only one battery is needed to operate the thermostat.
Setting the Time/Day of the Week
Press SET and AUTO/MAN together, then release and press either up or down arrows to set the correct time. (Be careful –
the AM and PM in the display look very much alike). Press and release SET. The number now appearing in the display represents the day of the week (1 = Monday, through 7 = Sunday). Change with either arrow.
Setting the Temperature Differential
After setting the time and day, press SET again to view the current degrees of temperature differential between on/off
cycles. Press either arrow to change from 1 to 6 degrees.
Example: Set at 6, the thermostat will activate heat or cooling when the current room temperature in your home is within 6
degrees of the requested temperature. Recommended setting is 1.
Fan Switch Operation
Normal functions are obtained with the fan on AUTO. To keep the fan on constantly, switch to ON.
Auto/Manual Functions: Programming
Upon installation, your thermostat is in the manual mode. If you wish to maintain a set temperature without the use of a setback keep the thermostat on MAN. Note: the dot in the display appears next to “MAN”. To program the thermostat, switch to AUTO. You may program up to four different temperature selections per day, with different setting for weekdays and weekends. Override a programmed setting by manually selecting a new temperature. The AUTO program will resume when the next programmed setting time is reached.
Setting the Time/Day of the Week Temperature Differential
Heat/Cool/Off/Em: System Switch Operation
You may select the function of the system that you wish to use with the system switch; Either air conditioning, heat, emergency
heator to turn the system off completely.
Please remember that your thermostat has a built in safety feature designed to protect the compressor. Once a request for
heat or air conditioning has been satisfied, the thermostat will keep the unit from coming back on again for approximately 5
The fan cycles on and off with calls for heating or cooling in the AUTO mode, and operates continuously in the ON position.
The three LED indicator lights on the face of the thermostat are designed to inform you of the following:
AUX (green light): Comes on when the auxiliary (back-up) heat is in operation. This is the second (non-economical)
stage of heat.
CHECK (red light): Denotes system malfunction. Call for service.
EM HEAT (red light): Comes on when Emergency Heat is selected at the thermostat with the System Switch.
Resetting the Thermostat
If you need to erase programmed settings, remove the faceplate of the thermostat and press the reset button. It is located to the left of the display, and is marked with an “R”. This is also applicable with the Honeywell thermostat for gas furnaces
ZTECH SYSTEM OPERATION
The Zoned Thermal Equalizer two zone controller works with your Heating and Air Conditioning System, and allows you to have two thermostats to independently control the temperature in two zones or areas of your residence. The operation of the ZTE is automatic and in most cases, its operation will be transparent to you and does not require any adjustment on your part.
You should think of your ZTE equipped HVAC system as being an independent system, each with its own thermostat. IT’S THAT SIMPLE!
Set each Zone Thermostat to the heat or cool mode and the temperature that you desire and the ZTE controller will automatically control your HVAC system to give you the desired temperatures.
The ZTE responds to the Zone Thermostats and how you have then set. Many thermostats are programmable. Be Sure To Consult Your Thermostat Manual First If You Have Questions About System Operations.
When you set both your thermostats to the same mode, i.e. heating or cooling, the ZTE is primarily controlling the electrically operated dampers to direct the airflow where the thermostats are asking for it. If you set your thermostats to different modes, i.e. one in heating and one cooling, then the ZTE switches the central HVAC systems between modes as required.
If the thermostats simultaneously call for both heating and cooling (which, of course, your single HVAC system can’t do), then the ZTE will give priority to the Heating call. When the thermostat is satisfied, the ZTE will automatically switch the HVAC system to the cooling mode to satisfy the other thermostat.
If your system has the optional Thermal Equalizer and /or Smart Vent features installed, then there may be some user operation required. See the Thermal Equalizer and Smart Vent sections for further instructions.
One final note on system operation: the ZTE has a built-in 5-minute delay for short cycle protection for your system’s compressor. This prevents one thermostat from turning on the compressor just after it has completed a call from the other thermostat. You may notice a delay in system operation if this safety time delay is in progress.
Two Story, Single Story Application
In a typical single story residence the “zones” would be the living area as one zone and the sleeping area as the second zone. (This conforms to the California Title 24 energy code requirements for zoning credits.)
Two Zone, Two Story Application
In two story applications the “zones” are typically divided as upstairs and downstairs zones.
IMPORTANT ENERGY SAVING FEATURE
Due to the ability to direct all heating or cooling to either temperature zone, you will find that you can switch your system off when leaving home, with the knowledge that the system can
recover rapidly in one zone when get home. This feature can also be used to cool the occupied zone comfortably, even when outdoor temperatures greatly exceed the conditions for which the system was designed.
Smart Vent Feature
The Smart Vent feature on the ZTE controller monitors the indoor and outdoor temperatures and determines when the outdoor temperature is lower than the indoor temperature by the present differential of 6 degrees Fahrenheit (adjustable from 2 deg. F. to 10 deg. F.). The system also monitors the indoor Smart Vent thermostat to see if it is calling for venting.
When both the outdoor temperature differential and indoor vent thermostat are calling for venting the controller turns on the heating and air conditioning system’s fan and opens an outdoor air supply damper allowing fresh air to circulate throughout your home.
The system also has a manual mode. Turning the system switch to manual vent on the Smart Vent is independent of the heat and cool calls from the Zone thermostats. If the Smart Vent system switch is in the auto vent position, the Smart Vent Control will switch the HVAC system to outside air source anytime the vent conditions are proper even during heat or cooling operation.
In some cases you may desire this, but if you don’t want venting to occur during heating operation, you must be sure the Smart Vent system is set properly. Either the vent system switch should be set to the OFF position or the vent thermostat set properly, above the heat settings or below the cool settings of the HVAC system thermostat.
Smart Vent Modes of Operation
The System Switch, located on the Vent Thermostat, controls the operation of the Smart Vent system. The modes of operation are:
System Switch OFF: The Smart Vent system will not function under any condition.
System Switch AUTO: The Smart Vent will come on when the outside temperature is lower than the inside temperature by the differential set point (factory set at 6 degrees F) and the inside temperature is above the Vent Thermostat set point.
System Switch ON: This is a manual override for the Smart Vent air venting will be on continuously until the system switch is returned to OFF or AUTO.
Smart Vent Recommended Thermostat Settings
Recommended settings for both the Heat and Cool thermostat and Smart Vent thermostat for optimum efficiency, comfort and Fresh air purging.