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How to check for an ARC License (and why it matters!)

How to check for an ARC License (and why it matters!)

Most people don’t realise that the refrigerants in air-conditioners and refrigerators can be extremely harmful. However not only can chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and greenhouse gases damage the ozone layer, but freon can also cause poisoning in humans if inhaled.

That’s why it is crucial to choose a licensed professional to install and service any cooling system. And to make sure your technician has a current ARC license before they perform work in your home or business.

What is the ARC?

The Australian Refrigeration Council (ARC) is an independent body appointed by the Minister for Environment and Heritage to administer the national refrigeration and air conditioning permit scheme. The ARC grants Refrigerant Trading Authorisations and Refrigerant Handling Licenses to approved businesses and individuals who acquire, posses, handle or dispose of fluorocarbon refrigerants. Their aim is to ensure that ozone depleting substances (ODS) and synthetic greenhouse gases (SGG) are handled in such a way as not to damage the environment.

How can I check an ARC License?

The best way to check if a technician holds a current ARC Refrigerant Handling License is to go to the ARC website and do a license check. You just need to enter the technician’s license number and surname and the search function will tell you if their permit is valid.

What is the ARC Tick?

The ARC tick is given to businesses and individuals who are authorised to install, service and repair fridges, freezers and air conditioners, in your home, office or car. The tick identifies the license holder as complying with Australian law regarding safe handling of fluorocarbon refrigerants.

How do refrigerants affect humans?

Freon is the trademark name for the liquid refrigerant used in refrigerators and air-conditioners. Without regular servicing, leaks can develop, making your cooling system less effective and potentially exposing you and your family to the escaping gas. Although mild exposure is generally harmless, poisoning can occur in confined spaces or through misuse. Symptoms include migraines, nausea, and fainting.

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How do refrigerants affect the environment?

Gases contained in refrigerants cause ozone depletion and contribute to global warming. Just one kilogram of the most common has, R410a, has the same global warming impact as two tonnes of carbon dioxide!! This is the equivalent to driving a four-cylinder car for 6 months.

Why is it important to use a licensed technician?

Because the refrigerants used in air-conditioners and refrigerators can be extremely harmful to the environment and to humans, it is important to ensure you book a professional to handle your cooling systems. Licensed technicians have the training and skills to correctly handle refrigerants and minimise the risk of emissions.

How often should I get my fridge, freezer or air-conditioner serviced?

Most of our customers don’t even think about getting their refrigerator, freezer or air-conditioning unit looked at until a problem occurs. But just like your car, regular servicing will prolong the life of your cooling unit and help you to avoid expensive breakages. At Precision Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration we recommend you have a technician check your units at least once a year.

Get in touch with one of our friendly team today and we’ll send an ARC approved technician to assess your fridge, freezer or air-conditioning and ensure it is functioning efficiently and safely.

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How to heat your home this winter using reverse cycle air-conditioning

How to heat your home this winter using reverse cycle air conditioning

It’s that time of year again in Melbourne! The temperatures have started to head south, and our winter clothes are making an appearance once more. This is the is the perfect time of year to start thinking about how you will heat your home this winter!

While there are many different options available, one of the easiest and most affordable options around is a Reverse Cycle Air Conditioning Unit. So, what makes this such a great option?

WARM IN WINTER, COOL IN SUMMER

The beauty of a reverse cycle system is that you are getting two climate control systems in one. For cooling, your unit absorbs heat from inside your home and dissipates it outside. This energy efficient method means that Reverse Cycle cooling can work in temperatures of up to 45ºc – perfect for our intense Australian summers.

Then in winter, the system works in the opposite way, by absorbing heat from outside air and releasing it indoors. And it doesn’t need to be warm outside for this to work – in fact, a good reverse cycle air-conditioner can work in temperatures as low as minus 15ºc.

ENERGY EFFICIENT

For most of our clients, one of the most important factors in selecting a heating and cooling system is the effect the new system will have on their power bills. And that is why the reverse cycle system is so popular. They are incredibly efficient in terms of energy use, heating and cooling even in the most extreme conditions. In fact, reverse-cycle air conditioning is 300–600% efficient, which means that it can take one unit of electrical energy and turn it into 3 to 6 times as much heating or cooling energy.

Talk to our expert technicians about the different energy ratings for reverse cycle air conditioning units. While it might cost you a little more initially to opt for a higher rated system, you can save money over time with a more efficient unit.

SMARTER TECHNOLOGY

Most modern reverse cycle air conditioning units now have invertor technology which helps the system perform even more efficiently. Invertor technology allows the unit to adjust power to reach the desired temperature faster and then steadily maintain it for uninterrupted and more energy efficient climate control.

CLEANER AIR

Some reverse cycle split systems can even purify the air inside your home, using a built-in filter to trap particles and in some cases, even reduce odours and neutralise bacteria and viruses. For families with asthma sufferers or other allergies, this can be a huge advantage to choosing a split system. Talk to our expert technicians to find out which model will best meet your family’s needs.

LOWER CARBON FOOTPRINT

Thanks to their incredible efficiency, reverse cycle air conditioners produce around one thirds the greenhouse gas emissions of a standard electric heater.  And for some of the highest rated models, this drops to only around one fifth of a standard electric heater’s emissions. So not only are you saving money by using less energy. You’re also reducing your carbon footprint and heating your home in a more sustainable way.

QUICK & EASY INSTALLATION

Compared to ducted heating, installing a reverse cycle air conditioning unit is quite inexpensive and very quick. Precision Air Conditioning & Refrigeration technicians all hold the following certifications which are essential for the safe installation of your split system.

  • ARC Tick – authorises businesses and individuals to install, service and repair air-conditioners
  • Energy Safe Victoria – certifies that your technician is legally allowed to work with electricity and gas
  • VBA – your technician must be a registered plumber with the Victorian Building Authority.

With a 36-month warranty on all installations, you can rest easy knowing your air-conditioning will be installed to the highest standard.

REQUEST A FREE QUOTE TODAY

Why not talk to one of our friendly technicians about your home’s heating requirements? Book an obligation free consultation and quote from the team at Precision Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration and ensure your family stay warm and cosy this winter.

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How to keep cool while keeping your electricity bill down this summer

How to keep cool while keeping your electricity bill down this summer

If you’re wondering how to lower your electric bill in the summer, you’ll be pleased to know there are plenty of easy hacks to save you the big bucks and keep your home cool.

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There’s a lot to love about summer in Australia — longer days, beach time, barbeques and cricket on the telly.

But the warmer months are less endearing when you’re covered in a thin layer of sweat all day and too hot sleep at night. By mid-December, air-con becomes an essential survival tool.

But how do you stay cool without blowing out your electricity bill? With just a few tweaks and the right unit, it can be done. Here’s how.

TWEAK THE TEMPERATURE

Did you know that turning your AC up just one degree cuts your electricity use by around 10 per cent

That’s because the harder your air conditioner has to work, the more power it uses. So if you’re trying to cut back on your power bill, resist the urge to turn your AC all the way down to 18 degrees. In fact, in Melbourne, experts advise that the optimum cooling temperature is actually between 26 and 27 degrees celsius

Tweaking the temperature is one of the most effective ways to stay cool on the cheap. You probably won’t notice a one or two-degree difference, but your wallet will.

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GO FOR LOW ENERGY AND HIGH TECH

Choosing the right air conditioner will also make a big difference to your electricity bill.

By going for a unit with a good energy rating, like a  split system reverse cycle air conditioner, you’ll save yourself money. The more stars a unit has, the higher its energy efficiency and therefore the cheaper it will be to run. 

High tech models are actually designed to help you lower your power bills — it comes with energy-saving an economy mode and human sensor technology, which picks up movement in the room and automatically adjusts temperature settings.

Looking for the right solution for your home? Fill in our Solutions form and we will calculate your best option. 

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You should also look for units with built in timers, so that your AC will automatically switch off when it’s not needed. Some units come with a sleep timer that will gradually change the temperature across the night to ensure you’re getting a comfortable night’s sleep, but not using more power than necessary. Some also have a weekly timer that allows you to pre-set on and off times for up to a week — which is great if you have a habit of forgetting to switch the AC off before you head out for the day.

PLUG UP DRAFTS

If half of your cold air is rushing out under the front door, you’re going to end up needlessly adding to your power bill. Again, that’s because the harder your air conditioner has to work to keep a space cool, the more power it chews through. A simple frugal fix is to plug up any drafts in your home to keep the cool in, while a longer-term investment would be improving the insulation in your home.

Similarly, consider keeping your curtains and blinds down during the day. By blocking out the sun’s rays, you’ll keep the temperature down inside without having to jack up the AC.

BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY KEEP A REGULAR SERVICING SCHEDULE

There’s one more simple thing you can do to keep your electricity bills down in summer: Get a service.

When air conditioner filters are dirty, units have to work hard to get the cool air out — which, once more, will up your power bills. So by regularly cleaning or replacing your filter, you’ll save money. Easy as! 

Ready to book your system in for a service? Book a service here and Precision will help you reduce Air-Conditioning Costs

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Why it is Important to Maintain a Regular Servicing Schedule

Why is it Important to Maintain a Regular Servicing Schedule

Caring for your heat pump is easily and often discounted as a ‘nice to have’ rather than a necessity. However, they are an asset worth something to the value of your home and your own personal comfort so therefore worth taking care of.
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Longer lifecycle

Like anything with a motor, regular maintenance and servicing is important for your heat pump to keep it running as well as possible for as long as possible.

Enhancing efficiency

Efficiency should be a key driver to get your heat pump serviced regularly, after all, isn’t efficient heating why you had it installed? When it’s not running at its peak it’s costing you more in energy consumption.

Health benefits

Regular heat pump servicing helps the filters keep doing their job of removing bacteria and odours from the air in your home.

Improved comfort

If your heat pump isn’t at its peak and heating or cooling proficiently it’s directly impacting your comfort levels.

When to service

A good brand, serviced properly, can last anywhere up to 15 years. Never having it serviced could knock at least 5 years off that or at least ensure it’s performing poorly for a large portion of it’s lifecycle.

Your heat pump should be serviced before you really need it so pre-winter and, if you use it for cooling, before the peak of summer.

If you notice your power bills have increased without an obvious reason it could be your heat pump is not running well and needs a service.

I clean my heat pump filters, I don’t need a service

We hear this a lot and it’s important to know that cleaning and servicing are quite different. Filter cleaning is basic maintenance and good on you for doing it often. However, servicing also tends to the mechanical operation of both the indoor and outdoor units.

Things you can do yourself

  • Check your manual and follow any instructions it gives on maintenance and cleaning.

  • Clean supply and return grilles/louvers with a damp cloth (these are the fins that swing back and forth to move the air) and make sure they’re not blocked.

  • Filters can usually be cleaned simply by vacuuming or wiping with a damp cloth. During times of heavy use you may want to wash them in warm soapy water, leave to dry and return to the unit.

  • To clean the outdoor unit, gently hose it down to remove dirt and a brush to clear away cobwebs and bits of plants and leaves that have gathered and could block the coil or drain.

Troubleshooting

  • If your system won’t switch on, check the remote control batteries. It they’re ok, check the fuse in your fuse box.

  • If the temperature is right but the air flow is weak check the filters aren’t clogged with dust and in need of cleaning.

  • Check your manual’s troubleshooting section and follow any instructions.

  • If you don’t see any improvement after following these tips it’s time to call in Precision!.

Precision Service

Because we know air-conditioning so well, we know what your system needs, and when, to ensure it’s running in top condition.

At Precision, our service includes the following:

  • Clean and disinfect the systems’ coils

  • Clean and disinfect drain pipes and condensate pumps if fitted

  • Clean air filters

  • Check the electrical circuit for the system

  • Check for any refrigerant gas leaks

  • Check the systems fault diagnostics

  • Check temperature readings

  • Check the systems general operation

  • Check noise levels

  • Instruct in any operation and maintenance requirements if necessary

Looking to start a regular servicing and maintenance Schedule? 

Book your system in with Precision and we will make sure you continue to have a comfortable & healthy home!