4 benefits of upgrading to a ductless HVAC system

While most standard air conditioners and furnaces rely on air ducts to cool and heat your home, a ductless HVAC system does things differently by putting the source of that comfort right in the room with you. Ductless systems aren’t just versatile: they’re also energy-efficient and convenient. In this article, we’ll review what ductless systems are, how they work, and how one Carrier system leads the industry when it comes to ductless performance.

Year-round comfort

At minimum, ductless HVAC systems consist of two main components: an indoor blower unit (typically wall-mounted) and an outdoor heat pump. This type of system can provide both summer cooling and wintertime heating, even here in Chicago. Heat pumps operate by moving heat energy from one location to another. In the summer, this means removing heat from the home and depositing it outside—just like an air conditioner. In the winter, the heat pump pulls residual heat energy from even cold outdoor air and brings it inside.

In a section to come, we’ll review how one Carrier ductless system in particular is a good fit here in the Chicago area.

The indoor, wall-mounted component of a ductless system setup.

Zoned comfort for each room of your home

When you turn down the thermostat linked to a traditional HVAC system, the unit kicks on and cooled or heated air begins blowing out of the ducts. Depending on how your ducts work, you may be able to close or open specific ones, but the system is still pushing air there, which means you’re still effectively paying to cool or heat the entire home, not just a single room. Ductless changes the game by allowing you to selectively change the temperature of the room you’re in or a group of rooms instead of the whole house. This means you can set the comfort in each room—and set yourself up for savings.

For example, if you and your family are spending a hot summer night in the kitchen eating dinner and then playing a board game, you can set that room to a cooler temperature than the rest of the home so that everyone stays comfortable. Then, when the game ends and everyone heads to bed, you can turn off the cooling in the kitchen and turn it on in the bedrooms. This “zoned” approach saves you money because you’re only paying to cool or heat the rooms that you need to at any given time.

Greater energy-efficiency

Ductless HVAC systems are more energy efficient than standard air conditioners and furnaces. As it turns out, air is a relatively poor conduit for temperature, which means that a great deal of the energy spent cooling or heating air is wasted as that air travels through your air ducts to vents and the living spaces of your home. The system then needs to generate more cooled or heated air to make up for the amount lost in transit.

With its indoor, wall-mounted blower unit, a ductless system cuts out the most wasteful part of the process and distributes cooled and heated air directly where it is needed. Add in the aforementioned ability to operate your cooling and heating strategically in zones, and a ductless system will lead to both lower energy bills and greater comfort in your home relative to a standard air conditioner and furnace.

No need to add ductwork

There are many homes and spaces here in the Chicago area where it doesn’t make sense to add air ducts. Historic homes, many of them built before central air conditioning and heating took the form we recognize today, may not be able to be extensively modified or retrofitted due to local historic preservation codes (not to mention that the cost of adding ductwork is often a dealbreaker for many homeowners). In other cases, it may not make sense or be feasible for a homeowner to run new duct lines out to home additions, non-connected suites, or garages.

No matter what type of home or what kind of space you have, a ductless HVAC system grants you greater flexibility. Many homeowners who are car enthusiasts or hobbyists are even starting to use ductless indoor units to keep their garages comfortable during the winter cold or the summer humidity here in Chicagoland.

The outdoor heat pump component of a Carrier Infinity ductless HVAC system.

The outdoor heat pump component of a Carrier Infinity ductless HVAC system.

The Carrier Infinity® Heat Pump

This is one of the most advanced heat pumps in the world, and it’s a perfect fit for the climate here in the Chicago area. This system boasts up to 42 SEER cooling and 15 HSPF heating when paired with an indoor blower unit. Best of all, this heat pump has an operating range that allows it to remain at 100% heating capacity in temperatures as low as 0℉ and 100% cooling efficiency in temperatures as warm as 122℉. This versatility allows it to bring heat to your home, no matter how cold it gets this winter.

Call King for a free in-home estimate

To learn more about the Carrier Infinity® Heat Pump, the manufacturer’s other heat pumps, or these systems in general, give our team a call. King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing offers free in-home estimates on new cooling and heating systems, including ductless HVAC systems. Our techs can match you to the new Carrier ductless unit that’s right for your home.

Common AC problems and what you can do to prevent a breakdown

No one wants to be stuck on a hot and humid summer night with an air conditioner that isn’t working correctly. One important way to prevent a breakdown is to catch issues as soon as possible. Here are a few common AC problems to keep an eye on.

If your air conditioner is running into trouble, call King for 24/7 emergency AC repair service. We’re ready to help! Plus, we don’t charge you extra for work on evenings or weekends.

You can keep your air conditioner running right throughout the summer by keeping an eye out for these common AC problems.The most common air-conditioning problems

Here are some of the most common AC problems and what they could indicate. Remember: King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing offers 24/7 emergency service here in Chicagoland!

  • The house doesn’t feel cool: You hear the fan running and air is flowing, but it doesn’t feel cool. This problem can have many different causes, from dirty air filters to low coolant levels.
  • The fan isn’t working: When you set the thermostat to “cool” or “fan,” nothing happens. A common cause of this issue is a tripped circuit breaker. If the unit has power, the fan may have a worn belt.
  • The AC doesn’t turn on: If the AC doesn’t turn on at all, there may be a thermostat issue or a power problem. If the compressor doesn’t engage, the start capacitor may be the problem.
  • The AC won’t stop running: Sometimes fan or condenser problems cause the air conditioner to run continuously. This behavior isn’t normal, even if it’s hot outside.
  • There’s a weird smell or sound: Among the most noticeable problems are strange noises coming from the air conditioner, such as grinding, squealing, or popping sounds. Burning smells are also serious signs of trouble. Turn off your system and call the professionals at King.

What you can do to keep your AC in great condition

To prevent a breakdown, it’s essential to act quickly when you notice something odd. This means calling professionals ASAP. Our expert AC repair technicians can find the underlying cause immediately, preventing long-term damage to costly components such as the compressor.

In addition to emergency repairs, it’s a good idea to schedule preventative maintenance that focuses on cleaning and system analysis. Annual inspections can find issues before they become a problem. You can also contribute to a long-lasting air conditioner by replacing your air filter every 2–3 weeks and clearing away any dirt or debris.

At King, we’re always on call

You don’t have to take care of air conditioner maintenance and repairs alone. At King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, we help you from the very beginning, offering recommendations for the perfect air-conditioner for your home. Whether you need a seasonal AC inspection, maintenance tips, or emergency repairs, reach out to our team right away.

Your home deserves the King Royal Treatment Plan

If you’ve read our other blog posts on the subject, you know just how important regular maintenance is to your air conditioner and furnace. Here’s the cool thing you might not know yet: at King, we make it easy for local homeowners here in Chicagoland to get their seasonal HVAC tune-ups. As a member of our King Royal Treatment Plan, we’ll call you to schedule the maintenance appointments. You’ll also get a number of other awesome perks, including priority treatment and discounts!

Join the King Royal Treatment Plan today.

Get the regal treatment you deserve as a member of the King Royal Treatment Plan. To learn more or to sign up, call us!

To join our King Royal Treatment Plan, contact our team online, or give us a call at (708) 687-6898. We’ll be happy to review the benefits of this program with you and the reasons why you should join!

Keep your cool (or warm) with the King Royal Treatment Plan

Preventive maintenance is vital for HVAC systems. You don’t want them to fail when the winter is coldest, or the summer is hottest. You don’t want them to be energy-inefficient. Routine inspection and maintenance help prevent system failure and saves money.

Let the King Royal Treatment Plan help keep your system running efficiently. King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing will come out twice yearly to perform preventive maintenance. We’ll call you to schedule the visit and make sure your system is ready for the season.

Royal Treatment Plan subscribers receive priority treatment

On bitterly cold winter days, it’s common to have a rash of HVAC failures throughout your community. Preventive maintenance minimizes the chance of a failure, but it doesn’t guarantee it. There is nothing worse than waiting for service and hoping your pipes don’t freeze.

As a member of the Royal Treatment Plan, you have made an extra effort to ensure that your HVAC system remains up and running. You deserve a reward. Any service request you make will take priority over non-subscribers.

Subscribers receive discounts on parts and labor

The cost of parts and labor is always a concern with heating and cooling systems. As an incentive to becoming a subscriber, you can expect to pay for parts and labor at discounted rates. This plan is also available for older equipment that may be more susceptible to problems.

See if the King Royal Treatment Plan is for you

The most important feature of the plan is the peace of mind it provides. Would you like to learn more? Contact King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing today and ask about this fantastic plan.

What are the advantages of hybrid systems?

If you’re facing the double-whammy of declining comfort and rising energy bills, it might be time for a new heating or cooling system. Older furnaces and air conditioners are not able to keep up with the heating and cooling demands of your home, and you’ll start to see your bills skyrocket as a result. Here’s a solution: hybrid systems. Hybrid systems are dual-fuel setups that can switch between heating methods during the winter. They’re great.

In this article, we’ll explore what hybrid systems are, how they work, and why one might be perfect for your home here in Chicagoland. If you need heating or cooling installation, be sure to call your friends at King for a free in-home estimate!

Call us for a free in-home estimate on our hybrid systems.

Hybrid systems are capable of switching between using gas and electricity to heat your home—depending on which is cheaper.

What are hybrid systems?

Hybrid HVAC systems combine two methods of heating and cooling: electric and gas. With the capability of running on both, the system can choose the more efficient type to match the current weather conditions.

The benefit of going hybrid is that it’s highly customizable. When it comes to your home’s air distribution, each person has different needs, whether it’s temperature preferences or allergy sensitivities.

Technology plays a big role in making units more adaptable to on-the-spot changes. Along with the ability to switch between gas and electric, most systems come equipped with innovative features that allow you to make even personal tweaks to your environment:

  • Remote operation
  • Air purifier/humidifier
  • Zoning

Zoning is especially advantageous because you’re able to alter settings in different areas of the home. If your basement is consistently cold, you can increase the heat without cooking the rest of your house.

How do these systems save you money?

When you work with King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, you’ll get a hybrid system that’s grounded in the principles of energy efficiency. Regardless of the season, your unit calls on the method that may save you more money in the long run.

When temperatures are milder, the electric components will work hard to keep your home’s environment at a comfortable temperature range. When conditions dip below freezing, the system switches to gas, which heats your home in a much more efficient manner.

These systems are also durable. You may get more years of use than a non-hybrid system, and you may spend less on frequent and expensive repairs.

Is a hybrid system the right choice for your home?

If you’re in the market for a new heating system, the answer is probably, “Yes!” Energy efficiency helps you save money, and hybrid systems are designed for economical operation. Not only are these HVAC models kind to your wallet but they do more to provide a relaxing and enjoyable environment.

To find out more about hybrids and whether or not one would be a good fit for your home here in Chicago, call us for a free in-home estimate on a new heating system. Our techs can meet with you and learn more about your home’s heating needs.

Proud to be your trusted heating contractor in Chicago

When you need home services, you need a trusted plumbing, cooling, or heating contractor in Chicago. That’s what we’re here for. At King Cooling, Heating & Plumbing, we offer professional repair, maintenance, and installation services for both homes and businesses—all from NATE-certified HVAC technicians and experienced plumbers.

If you need heating services this winter, give us a call. We offer 24/7 repair throughout Chicago’s Southlands.

King is your trusted heating contractor in Chicago

We’re proud to be your trusted heating contractor in Chicago. Call us for 24/7 service!

Our history

Since 1968, our company has been serving generations of Chicagoans. Our mission is to provide residents of Chicagoland with exemplary and trusted HVAC and plumbing services. That dedication has allowed us to grow over the years, all while never wavering from our commitment to excellence.

Our awards

We’re proud to have received awards in recognition of our work. We’re a six-time Carrier President’s Award winner, and we’ve been the recipient of the “Best of Chicago’s Southlands” award six times. In 2012, we received the Angie’s List Super Service award.

BBB A+ rated company

It’s also best to work with a company that’s well-regarded by the Better Business Bureau. For that reason, we’re proud to say our company has received an A+ rating from the bureau. What this means is our customers have awarded us with five out of five stars for our BBB rating.

Our commitment to you

No matter if you’re in need of professional servicing for your residential or commercial HVAC unit or your plumbing system, King is here to answer the call as your heating contractor in Chicago. What’s more is we do everything possible to save you as much money as we can without compromising on the quality of services we deliver.

Know that we also offer financing for those necessary yet unplanned repairs that pop up. We know you and your finances aren’t always prepared for repairs and upgrades. That shouldn’t mean you have to sacrifice your financial health or peace of mind to get everything back on track.

Feel free to let us know if you’d like to speak to some of our current customers to get a better idea of how we work and what you can expect from us. We’re sure you’ll come away feeling confident about our dedication and services.

For a trustworthy heating contractor in Chicago, call King!

Do you need service, or do you have any questions for us here at King Heating, Cooling and Plumbing? Contact us! We’d love to hear from you and see if there’s a way we can help.

Here’s how to deal with frozen pipes in your home this winter

Frozen pipes are the fear of every Chicago homeowner. All it takes is one cold night, one problem with your furnace, and you’re suddenly dealing with pipes filled with ice. In this blog, we’ll discuss what frozen pipes are, how to deal with frozen pipes this winter, and what not to do when your pipes freeze.

For fast, reliable plumbing services here in Chicagoland, call your friends at King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing. We offer 24/7 emergency frozen pipe repair services here in Oak Lawn, Frankfort, and Joliet, IL.

Avoiding frozen pipes is easy with these tips from KingWhy are frozen pipes such a problem?

As water freezes, it also expands. You may see this phenomenon when you make ice in a freezer ice tray: even when you fill the water up to the fill line, the resulting ice cubes often freeze over the top of that line.

In that scenario, the water has room to expand into as it freezes. However, in the case of your home’s pipes, there is no where for the ice to go. As the molecules expand, they push against the metal or ceramic sides of the pipe, exerting tremendous pressure on the interior walls.

Best case, the pipe walls hold, and there’s no long-term damage to your pipes. Worst case, they don’t, and you suddenly have water flooding into your home.

How to deal with frozen pipes this winter

Call us. Seriously: if you suspect your pipes have frozen, you need to call a licensed, professional plumber immediately. Doing so increases the chances that we can safely thaw out your pipes without long-term structural damage.

After you’ve called, shut off all the water to your home using the main water shut-off valve. There’ll still be some residual water in your home’s pipes, but this will at least limit the amount that can come out of a cracked pipe.

Here’s what not to do

Never try to thaw your home’s frozen pipes yourself! There’s a lot of “home remedies” out there on the Internet, from using a hair dryer to an electric blanket. At best, they just don’t work. At worst, they can actually increase the stress on your pipes, leading to a burst and other problems down the road. Or, they can present a danger to yourself and your family. Take that hair dryer, for instance. You’re using an electric appliance in a position where, if something went wrong, there could be water everywhere.

A professional plumber can help inspect the plumbing system prior to beginning the thawing, which helps identify if freeing the ice in one spot is going to cause a torrent in another damaged spot.

Call King for 24/7 frozen pipe services

If you suspect that your home’s pipes have frozen, call our team for 24/7 plumbing repair here in Chicagoland.

Here are 5 signs your furnace may be failing and needs to be replaced

Here at King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, we understand just how important your furnace is to the comfort and safety of your home. Repairs and scheduled tune-ups are often enough to keep yours running efficiently, but if your furnace is more than 15 years old, these signs may indicate that your furnace either needs to be repaired or replaced.

If you need to upgrade to a new furnace, call King! We offer free in-home estimates on new heating systems here in Chicagoland.

5 signs your furnace may be failing

Here are the five biggest signs you should call the team at King for a furnace inspection this winter:

1. You hear unfamiliar noises

While most furnaces make some noise when kicking on, if you begin to hear banging, clanging, or grinding that you’ve never heard before, your furnace may be on its last legs. This is usually a sign that the furnace is having to work extra hard to heat your home. Not only could this lead to additional wear-and-tear, but it could hurt your system’s energy efficiency.

2. The pilot light is yellow

A furnace’s pilot light should be a blue, consistent flame. Anything other than this, and especially a yellow flame, is not a good sign. It could be that your furnace is putting out too much dangerous carbon monoxide. You should turn the system off and call King for an inspection—it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to potential carbon monoxide issues.

3. Your home has cold areas

If you begin to notice that some areas of your home never warm up, or that there are some areas that are too hot, the furnace may not be working right. A properly functioning furnace should heat your home evenly; in contrast, one that isn’t running right will leave certain rooms cold and others hot. Even more, if the air blowing from your vents is cold, something is definitely not working correctly.

4. Your heating bill keeps going up

When you open your monthly bill, you likely expect to see a fairly consistent number each time. If that number instead is growing each billing cycle, it could indicate that your heating system is breaking down. Over time, instead of spending more on your bill, it may be time to invest in a new furnace.

5. You’ve spent a lot on recent repairs

Once your furnace has reached between 10-15 years of age, the need for repairs tends to go up. If you find that you are frequently forking over good money to repair your old furnace, it could be a sign that it is failing and needs to be replaced.

Call King for a furnace inspection!

The professional team at King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing is here for your heating needs in Oak Forest, Joliet, and Frankfort, IL. If you suspect that your furnace is on the verge of a breakdown because of the reasons listed above, give us a call to schedule an inspection.

Here’s the signs your home is ready for a new furnace

If your furnace is getting up there in age (it’s more than 10 years old), you should be prepared for the possibility that you may want to upgrade your furnace in the next few years. In this blog, we’ll run through the signs that your old furnace might need to be replaced with a new furnace this winter.

King offers free in-home estimates here in Chicagoland, including Joliet, Oak Forest, Orland Park, and beyond. To schedule yours, give us a call.

Your older system just isn’t heating your home

As furnaces age, their heating output often becomes more limited. The furnace, in effect, is putting less warm air into your home’s air ducts. The result is that the system isn’t able to completely distribute hot air to all areas of your home, resulting in a patchwork of hot and cold spots.

For homeowners, this can be infuriating. You and your family may be enjoying the temperature of the kitchen, but you step into the living room to watch a movie and you feel like a cold front just came in through the door.

There’s a few things you can do to try to improve this situation. First, if your furnace is getting up there in age, it might be time for a new one. However, you can also call King for air duct cleaning. It’s possible that your distribution of heat is being negatively impacted by dirty or partially clogged air ducts. This also has a negative impact on your indoor air quality.

Your energy-efficiency has taken a big dip

If your energy bills are spiraling out-of-control this fall and winter, it could be a sign that your older furnace is no longer able to generate heat as efficiently as it once did. There are two solutions to this problem: first, have King perform a heating tune-up on your system. This will help to ensure that your system—no matter how old—is at least working at its optimal condition.

However, in the long run, you should probably consider replacing your older furnace. Here’s why: over time, those energy bills can cascade and add up to big costs. If you’re paying $50-$100 extra per-bill throughout the winter months, you’re quickly looking at $1000 extra dollars if you delay upgrading by two years.

Of course, that’s only one aspect where you might be paying more than you should…

You’re needing more repairs than before

If you’ve been needing to get your furnace repaired one or two times per-season, it might be a good idea to make the switch to a new furnace. Multiple, sequential repairs can quickly meet or exceed the cost of a new furnace, and you’re not getting the benefits of the boosted energy-efficiency or manufacturer’s warranty.

When in doubt, you need to speak with a King technician. Our NATE-certified technicians can help you determine what the future of your HVAC system should be, and what steps you can take to replace your older system.

Make the switch to a new furnace

If you’re debating the upgrade to a new furnace this winter, consider this: King not only offers free in-home estimates on new systems, but we also have financing available with approved credit.

To get started on your journey to a new system, call our team today.

Here are our best tips for preventing frozen pipes this winter

On average, Chicago winters have highs just above freezing. Any time the temperature dips below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, there is a risk that your water pipes can freeze. Frozen pipes can crack and leak, which is why preventing frozen pipes is so important.

To avoid the need for emergency plumbing repair this winter, call King. We offer free plumbing inspections here in Oak Forest, Orland Park, Joliet, and other parts of Chicagoland. Our experienced plumbers are ready to help you with your plumbing needs, and to help you assess your risk for frozen pipes this winter.

Avoiding frozen pipes is easy with these tips from KingEnsure you have sufficient heat

Before winter hits, you want to make sure your home is ready for the cold months ahead. A furnace tune-up in the fall is one part of frozen pipe prevention. This service ensures your home has enough heat to protect you interior pipes and prevent freezing.

Know your high-risk areas

Exposed pipes, such as those in a basement or home exterior, are at the highest risk for freezing. However, an easy fix is to look into is insulation. Pipes in a basement, crawlspace or attic can be wrapped in foam, while external faucets can be protected with faucet covers.

Let warm air circulate and keep cold air out

Keep your garage door shut to prevent cold air from seeping in. You also want to use the warm air inside your home to protect interior pipes, such as those under a kitchen countertop. Open the cabinet doors as often as possible to allow for air circulation that helps in avoiding frozen pipes.

Drain faucets for reduced risk

You won’t be watering your lawn when the temperature is below freezing, so turning off the flow of water to your exterior faucets should pose no issue. Most switches are located in a basement or similar area. Once the water’s off, open your faucet all the way to let water drain out.

Know who your local plumber is

In the event some of your pipes freeze, you need a plan of action. A licensed plumber from King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing can assess the damage and determine what sort of repairs you might need. We are also available to help with your winter prep with a whole-house heating tune-up.

Preventing frozen pipes during a cold Chicago winter takes knowledge and proper planning. With our help, you can avoid common pitfalls during winter and protect your home from water damage. To learn more about our plumbing services, call us today.

Winter is around the corner, and it’s time to schedule a heating tune-up

Chicago’s winters are not for the faint of heart, which is why it’s important to have a strong, properly operating furnace to help you get through the colder months. To make sure your system works when you turn it on, it’s a good idea to schedule a heating tune-up every year, and fall is the perfect time for this.

For professional furnace tune-ups here in Chicagoland, contact the team at King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing.

Here’s why you should schedule a heating tune-up

#1. You can catch small problems early

Your furnace contains a complex network of moving parts that will eventually wear down over time. When we perform an annual fall tune-up on your system, we thoroughly inspect and clean each element. By making note of potential issues, we can prevent one worn part from creating a larger problem. In fact, King offers a 40-point furnace inspection and tune-up.

#2. You can get more out of your heating dollar

No matter if your furnace uses oil, natural gas, propane, or electricity, it can be expensive to keep your home warm during a Chicago winter. To get the most out of your energy expenses, your heating system needs to run at peak energy-efficiency. An annual tune-up can ensure everything is in proper working order efficiency-wise.

Over the course of the entire this winter, this could save you a lot of money on your heating bills.

#3. You can stay in compliance with your warranty

Heating systems come with lengthy warranties that cover key components in the event of breakage, but you have to keep up your end of the deal as an owner. If you don’t adhere to the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule, you might not be protected if the system fails.

#4. Keep your family safe

You probably don’t think of your furnace when everything is running properly, but it’s a device that uses combustible material to heat your home. If you don’t take care of maintenance issues regularly, you could end up with an unsafe situation such as a carbon monoxide leak or even a fire hazard.

Schedule a heating tune-up from King today!

Why set yourself up for a larger issue with your furnace that could be avoided by regular fall HVAC maintenance? You’ve spent a lot on your system, so trust the experts at King Heating, Cooling & Plumbing with all of your service needs. To schedule an appointment, contact us online today.