Keep your AC running smoothly

Redwood City California, furnace repair, heating system repair, furnace installation, furnace repair, heating system maintenance, furnace maintenance, heating contractor

With the hot weather and stay-in-place orders in San Mateo County, many households are installing A/C systems.

On hot days when your new AC runs constantly, there’s a chance its effectiveness could lower. Here are a few steps you can take to make sure your newly installed air conditioner works smoothly throughout the summer.

Replace your AC filter frequently

The job of an AC filter is to filter the debris and dust from the house and blow clean air into the house. When the AC filter gets dirty, it gets harder for the AC to blow air through it. This makes the air conditioner work harder and use more energy.

When the A/C filter stays dirty for a long time, the effectiveness of the AC is reduced and it will no longer cool the house as effectively. Change your filter once a month especially if you use the AC a lot.

Run fewer appliances

When the temperature rises outside, your AC has to work harder to keep your home comfortable.

Burners, ovens, dishwashers and dryers produce heat and increase the temperature inside the house. Try to avoid using these appliances on really hot days when you will likely run the AC for a long time.

Hot days might be a great time to spare your air conditioner by taking your cooking outside and barbecue!

Keep other heat-producing equipment such as computers and lamps away from the A/C thermostat. This may influence the A/C thermostat reading and cause the A/C to work harder than necessary.

Use fans to cool your home

A/C is not the only way to cool your home. Install floor and ceiling fans to circulate air. This cools the air and reduces the need to run your A/C. Run A/C less reduces your energy costs and extends the life of your new A/C.

Keep your vents clean

Vents are places where over time dust can collect and obstruct airflow. Every summer check your air conditioning vents to make sure that the air blows through these vents unobstructed.

Furniture and window treatments can also obstruct airflow from your air conditioner. Make sure that 6″ of space next to the vent is clear.

Update your air conditioner

Every appliance starts to degrade in its efficacy at some point or stops working altogether. Having an air conditioner working smoothly is important to keep your home comfortable. And when you feel it is time or when your HVAC contractor recommends it, replace your old air conditioner for a new energy-efficient one.

RC Mechanical Can Help

RC Mechanical, Redwood City’s best HVAC contractor, has installed and replaced many air conditioniong systems for Redwood City homeowners. Whether you need help selecting the right air conditioner, installing a furnace, or conducting a home energy audit, you can count on RC Mechanical for superior and cost-effective service. RC Mechanical is a local veteran-owned business and has provided expert furnace and air conditioning repair and installation to the Bay Area with integrity for over 20 years. Homeowners in Redwood City and throughout the Bay Area count on us for all their heating and air conditioning needs.

Call us today at (650) 575-3915 and we will respond within 24 hours.

How do I cool my second floor?

Keeping your second floor can be a real challenge in the dead of summer.

Since hot air rises, the upstairs can get up to 10 degrees hotter than the downstairs. During these times, it can be a challenge to keep the upstairs cool.

Another factor is the roof. In the summer, the roof gets the full brunt of the sun and it absorbs a lot of heat. This heats up the air in the attic which in turn heats up the upstairs.

Here are a few ways that you can manage to keep the second floor in your house comfortable.

Redirect cool air from the AC to upstairs

You can redirect more air from the AC upstairs by partially closing the vents downstairs. This will enable the cooler air to be blown upstairs. Be careful that you don’t close all the registers. This could affect the performance of the system. Talk to your HVAC specialist about balancing the system.

Install different zones in your house

With different zones in your house, you can control the temperature of each zone independent of the others. For example, you can set the thermostat to 68 downstairs and 72 upstairs.

Use window coverings to block the sun

If any of the windows get direct sun, especially in the afternoon, you should install drapes or shades. This can significantly reduce the temperature in a room.

Reduce your use of appliances upstairs

This is difficult if your kitchen is upstairs. Burners add a lot of heat to the surrounding area. On hot days, you could plan to eat out or make salads that don’t require the use of burners.

Install fans in the attic

Attic air can get to 130 degrees on a hot day! This would replace the hot air in the attic with cool air. (Rewrite this.)

Install ceiling fans

Ceiling fans are an easy and inexpensive way to keep the air moving and cooling a room.

Insulate your attic

When the midday sun hits the roof on a hot day, the attic heats up and this transfers the heat to the room right under it. By adding insulation in your attic you minimize the heat that is transferred to the living space.

You can install a vapor barrier on the bottom of the roof rafters. This slow the radiant heat from the roof into the attic which will keep your attic cool. Consequently your house will stay cooler.

Turn off any gadgets that generate heat.

Computers and other such electronic gadgets produce a lot of heat. Using these upstairs can also add to the temperature. Keep the electronic items turned off during the day or minimize their use upstairs.

Turn off lights. You’d be surprised how much heat they can create!

When the summer gets here, remember to drink cool drinks and keep hydrated!

Why is my AC making noises!

Summer is around the corner. This means hot days are approaching and your AC will be needed to keep you comfortable in your home.

In addition to routine maintenance, check for any unusual or unexpected noises coming from your AC unit. These noises signal trouble with your unit and may require immediate attention. Here’s a guide to these noises and actions you can take:

Squealing From Blower Motor

Your AC unit’s motor may have a bad belt or bearing. You can replace the belt yourself if you choose since it is an inexpensive and easy task. This should be done as soon as possible since a bad belt can lead to a broken belt which will prevent the blower from turning. Also, if your motor unit has oil ports, you may want to change or fill the ports with motor oil to help soften motor noises. Always research appropriate oil before using as each motor will have its own specification.

Loud Rattling or Banging

These sounds typically originate from either loose fasteners on the metal cage or a component of the blower assembly or motor which has come loose. Loose fasteners require tightening screws or bolts that secure the cage. A more complicated problem will be if the problem is with a component on the blower assembly. If not addressed, this rattling will get louder and may result in the disconnection of the blower itself. As this is a more complicated issue, you may want to do more research before attempting to address the issue yourself. Or you may want to call a certified HVAC technician to fix the issue.


Normally, your unit will click as it is being turned on and off but if the clicking is abnormally loud and coming from inside the cabinet, your capacitor may be on the way out and should be replaced. As a short term battery supply for the compressor and blower motor, the capacitor is a critical part of your AC unit and can wear down over time. An ineffective capacitor can put stress on the compressor which can in turn affect the overall health of your entire HVAC system. If you think your capacitor is making the clicking sound, turn off your AC unit immediately and contact a certified HVAC technician to replace the part.


If your AC unit does not turn on and your clicking sound has turned into a hum, this can be a very serious problem indicating the compressor is being used as a power source and can quickly lead to costly repairs. For this reason, we suggest that you turn off your AC unit to prevent further damage. These parts also have a tendency to fail during the warmest part of summer when your AC unit is working harder than normal. To avoid a breakdown, make sure to have a certified HVAC technician address this problem as soon as it is detected.

Loud Whistles or Screaming Noises

These types of noises are critical and can be very dangerous as they may indicate a refrigerant leak or internal pressure buildup. This needs immediate attention by a certified HVAC technician. If there is a 24-hour hotline for your specific technician, it is best to use that route as they may be able to diagnose the issue over the phone and provide next steps.

Metal on Metal

If this noise is coming from the fan, your blades may be the culprit. It is possible a foreign object like loose wiring or stones may be in contact with the blade. If not addressed, the blades may be damaged as well as the motor. This can even lead to a refrigerant leak. If you hear this type of sound, turn off your unit immediately and investigate what may be obstructing the blade(s). If the culprit can be removed manually, then cleaning and clearing the debris will fix the issue. A routine visual inspection of the fan and blades should be performed frequently while your unit is being used.

In summary, proactive and routine maintenance can help to prevent your AC unit from breaking down unexpectedly.

If your AC is making any of these strange sounds and you live between Burlingame and Sunnyvale, give Sal a call at (650) 575-3915.

Make your home comfortable

Does it ever feel that certain parts of the house are very comfortable and others are not. They could either be too hot or too cold.

This could happen even if the furnace is working well. The main culprit is the duct design.

When the furnace is actively blowing warm air into the home, they tend to pool in certain areas. Warm air rises. So the upstairs would be much warmer than the downstairs.

Even though the same type of pooling of warm and cold air happens in the summer as well, the comfort level will be better downstairs in the summer. This is because we are looking to keep ourselves cool.

If this sort of pooling occurs, then run your fan. The main job of the fan is to push the air into the room. The duct work should be designed to deliver the correct amount of warm/cool air to a specific room.

If you have a 2-story house with only a furnace, and the upstairs is warmer than needed, then most likely you have a air flow balance issue. This is corrected by adjusting the amount of air that goes into each area.

If you have a 2-story house with one furnace with AC, if you have issues of comfort, that can be achieved by automatic zoning. This is by having 2 thermostats (noe upstairs and one downstairs) and redirecting air as needed. Call your HVAC guy to achieve this.

Imagine you are filling your bathtub with warm/hot water to take a bath. The water just under the spout will be much warmer than the side of the bathtub farthest away. Before getting into the bathtub, we mix up the water or wait until the water is evenly warm everywhere.

This is exactly what we are trying to do with the fan. The fan circulates the air from all parts of the house and keeps the whole house at an even temperature.

During the fire season, you can keep your inside air clean by running the fan. This filters the air of impurities. Remember to change the filter often when the air is declared unsafe for outside activities. Check your filter more often and replace if needed.

There is another advantage to using the fan. Since the air goes through the duct is blown into the home, the air has to pass through the filters. This makes the air cleaner. So if you suffer from allergies, then running the fan is a great way to filter out the allergens in the air by running the fan.