Archive for the ‘News & Updates’ Category

What Florida’s New Solar Power Amendment Means For You

Florida voters recently passed Amendment 4, a constitutional amendment that will provide property tax breaks for homeowners and businesses that have solar panels installed.

The amendment passed with broad support of 73% of voters, and will expand the use of solar energy across the state.

Gator Air and Energy believes in going green with your air conditioning. As Gainesville’s only certified EnergySmart contractor, we offer full green energy services, including solar installation.

Gator Air and Energy is dedicated to conserving our natural resources in order to keep the environment happy and healthy. Therefore, we specialize in providing green solutions to the modern conveniences homeowners crave.

What Does The Solar Power Amendment Mean For You?

The solar power amendment means you now have tax incentives for going green through solar power.

Tax Breaks

Your tax breaks for installing solar panels work in two ways. First, installing panels cannot be used in determining home value. This is useful because it means adding the value of solar panels to your home will not increase your property taxes.

Second, the solar power amendment removes Florida’s “tangible personal property tax” that was previously placed on solar equipment installed on properties.

Saving The Environment

In the Gainesville area, your AC is running around the clock most of the year. You can’t go without AC, but it does leave an environmental footprint. Making sure your unit is running at peak efficiency and getting it checked regularly helps decrease the impact from your home or business.

Installing solar panels is taking the next step toward reducing your environmental impact by using the abundant natural power of the Sunshine State.

Saving Money

Installing solar panels on your home used to be a dream for the future. Then it became available, but expensive. Now, solar energy is affordable for individuals and families.

When you save energy, you save money. Lower utility bills are just one of the ways solar power makes your home or business more economically sustainable, as well as environmentally sustainable.

If you’re planning on living in your home or working in your business long-term, Energy Informative calculates that the savings from the investment in solar energy currently takes no more than 10 years to break even.


Gator Air and Energy is committed to making Gainesville more energy-efficient and more sustainable, starting with your home or business. Our green services include:

  • Solar Panel Installation
  • Solar Water Heaters
  • Solar Attic Fans
  • Solar Tubes
  • Tankless Water Heaters
  • And More

Contact us for an estimate on installing solar panels or making your home or business more sustainable.

Get An Estimate

New Commercial AC Technologies

Business owners everywhere understand the importance of technology to the world of commercial AC. However, many business owners aren’t maximizing their capabilities when it comes to efficient AC! Below, the air conditioning experts at Gator Air and Energy discuss the advances in commercial technologies and what it could mean for your company. 

An Intro to Commercial AC Tech

New products, services and technologies are crucial to corporate growth and success. In the commercial AC industry, this pattern is no different. From tankless water heaters to home automation, commercial AC technology is always on the cutting edge.

Integrated Water & Heating

Standard tank water heaters have been the standard for years, but high efficiency products like tankless water heaters are gaining popularity with consumers. These new heaters allow you to run your shower, dishwasher and other home appliances simultaneously without running out of hot water. Instead of heating around the clock, tankless water heaters operate on demand and do not consume energy when water is turned off. This feature alone can lead to substantial savings. In addition to being highly efficient, tankless water heaters are also considerably smaller than traditional heaters.

Due to their popularity amongst consumers, tankless water heaters have quickly become a cornerstone of the commercial AC industry.

Automated Appliance and Temperature Systems

It has become increasingly important for residential and commercial AC clients to be able to manage their temperature at all times. Several new products are delivering on that need by combining AC, heating and appliances into singular digital operating systems. Whereas you used to have to control each appliance individually and pre-set indoor temperatures, now you can do it all from your computer or tablet.

Mobility is Key

Commercial AC technology is no different from residential AC technology in it’s growing need for mobility. In a world where everything from banking to weight loss is controlled by mobile apps, the commercial AC industry has kept pace in a big way. Mobile AC apps can now collect and share data and alerts straight to your smart phone and even offer 24-hour tech support.

These innovations are helping business owners everywhere avoid catastrophe by keeping them connected and fully integrated at all times.

Commercial AC in Gainesville

Gator Air & Energy is Gainesville’s most technologically advanced commercial HVAC contractor. Want to learn more why we’re the best in North Central Florida? Click here to learn about our HVAC commercial services. Or, simply give us a call to learn more!

 

 

 

How to Ensure Maximum AC Efficiency

As the dog days of summer are upon us, lets take a look at your AC efficiency. Are you receiving maximum cooling when you need it most? Are you overexerting your unit? Are there any preventative measures that can be taken to avoid maintenance issues?

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Low Cost, Maximum Cooling

During the summer months, it can be especially tempting to lower your thermostat to 65 degrees and set your fans to the highest settings in order to combat the heat. Meanwhile, proper AC efficiency requires a little bit of restraint. Setting your thermostat at a lower temperature than the room itself won’t actually cool the room any faster. In addition to placing undo stress on your AC unit, it could also dramatically increase your electricity bill.

Can Outdoor Heat Effect AC Efficiency?

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Have you ever noticed how your air conditioning unit can take especially long to cool you off your home when the temperature is hot outside? That’s because before your AC unit can disperse cool air, it must first convert liquid refrigerant into a gas, a process that occurs at a high temperature. When it’s hot outside, the combined heat from the sun and the conversion of refrigerant can delay the process of cooling the air.

Dirty air filters and coils can also effect your AC efficiency, causing your unit to overheat. Preventing these issues could be as simple as checking your coils and filters once a month. Keeping an eye on your AC unit can go a long way in ensuring reliable AC efficiency and extending the lifespan of your unit. In addition to doing it yourself, we also recommend calling your AC vendor to schedule routine maintenance.

For even more AC efficiency tips and tricks, head over to the energy.gov and download their Home Cooling Energy Saver Infographic!

Indoor Air Quality: 4 Allergens That May Be In Your Home

Indoor Air Quality Allergens

Spring is here, and for some people that means warmer weather, blooming flowers and chirping birds. But for millions of Americans, the advent of the spring season also means runny noses, sneezing, and watery eyes.

Allergens are not limited to the outdoors. There are a number of allergens that could be hiding in your home, increasing your risk of seasonal allergies and affecting air quality.

Understanding what’s causing your allergies is the first step in combating the season of scratchy throats, congestion, and sniffles. These four allergens are common culprits when it comes to indoor air quality:

1. Pollen
Pollen can make its way indoors through open windows or doors, clothing or pet fur. It’s one of the most common allergy triggers that millions of Americans suffer from each spring as pollen-producing plants start to bloom. Pollen can travel far through the wind.

2. Dust
Dust can be made up of dead skin cells, fabric fibers, dust mites and their waste, pet dander and more. Dust is another common cause for allergies inside the home and is a major allergy source for people year-round.

3. Dust mites
Dust mites thrive on dust and their waste causes allergy symptoms in the home. These microscopic insects are concentrated in areas with more dust, dander and humidity.

4. Pet dander
Pet hair can collect dander, a protein found in fluids secreted from the animal. Dander is another common indoor allergy source. Pet dander is found in pet hair and can also be carried in through clothing.

Other common springtime allergens may also be carried in from outside on clothing, skin or shoes. To reduce the number of allergens in your home, take extra steps to ensure your home’s health this spring. Vacuuming and dusting regularly lessens the amount of dust that settles in your carpet and on surfaces. Keeping windows and doors closed will prevent pollen and other airborne allergens from entering your home uninvited. Dry all your laundry indoors during the spring to prevent clothing from attracting pollen or other allergens.

There is no cure to make pesky spring allergies go away for good, but these tips can help you combat allergens in your home or business and improve overall air quality. Gator Air and Energy has several different services that enable us to ensure that the air in your home or business is pure, and each of these services will leave you with safer, cleaner, fresher air to breathe. Contact us for more details – we want to make you more comfortable this spring!

Why a Gainesville Business Should Hire Gator Air and Energy for HVAC Services

Why Gator Air and Energy is the right choice for local Gainesville companies

Here at Gator Air and Energy, we take pride in our work, and we strive to make sure that our output is the highest quality possible. Therefore, in order to explain our personal standards for our services, we have contributed this blog that sums up everything we can do for local Gainesville businesses that need commercial HVAC help and why we are a very good fit for most companies.

Why Gator Air and Energy is a Good Fit For Gainesville

Our Customer Service is Unparalleled

We strive to give the absolute best customer service to all our clients. We accomplish this by responding to every call within two hours of the time it was made during the business day. Usually, our quick response time allows us to solve your problem within the day you placed the call, though the nature of the problem could affect this. Furthermore, we put the customer’s needs first by using a “repair instead of replace” strategy as frequently as possible. Oftentimes, A/C units can easily be replaced, but replacing a unit is a huge investment, and sometimes our customers cannot fit that expense into their budgets immediately. We understand that, so we will do our best to repair your unit in order to make it last as long as possible. Gator Air and Energy is committed to getting you what you need, and we will always be honest with you about all of the different options available.

Our Prices are Perfect for Small Businesses

As a small business ourselves, we understand that the budget for a business can be very involved, so we try to price our services with budget complications in mind. We do never charge overtime, and we only send trained technicians that are able to find and solve most problems quickly and efficiently. These promises produce cheaper rates for you. However, as we keep these promises, we still refuse to sacrifice quality and service, so we always take our time to guarantee that all problems have been solved thoroughly and that you have nothing to worry about for the future.

Our Service is Brand-Friendly

Instead of being locked into a contract for certain HVAC manufacturing companies, we service all brands. This fact gives you the ability to pick and choose the absolute best HVAC system for your company building. In addition, not only does our universal approach to manufacturers supply you with choices, but also it also affords you cheaper rates.

Our Technicians are Fully Trained

At Gator Air and Energy, our technicians are extremely knowledgeable about all aspects of the HVAC system. Why is this important? Well, when a technician is only trained in specific parts of an air conditioning system, they have a narrow scope of knowledge and may not notice other possible problems with their customers’ systems. By ensuring that all of our technicians are equipped with comprehensive knowledge of air conditioning systems, we are able to be proactive, not reactive, in our repairs. We can discover where there might be a future issue, and we can fix it before it happens.

Our Checkups are Always Thorough

When we perform our annual business checkups, we are sure to be as thorough as possible. Not only do we check the HVAC system for problems, but we also check the whole building to make sure there are no discrepancies. If we can find a way to help your business be more energy efficient, it makes our day.

We Keep You in The Loop

Whether we are providing a one-time repair or a quarterly checkup, we make sure that you know about the problem and about any other potential issues, and we always explain what we did or can do to fix those issues. We know that as manager of a small business, you need to know what is going on in all aspects of your company, and with that in mind, we promise to keep you updated on anything that we fix or do with your HVAC system.

We strive to make sure that our output is the highest quality possible.

Why Gator Air and Energy is a Good Fit For You

Want to learn more about how we cater to your Gainesville business? Then please contact us here or visit our page to continue to find out about our services.

Communication is Key: Why Working With an HVAC Contractor That Keeps Your Company Updated is Crucial

Why communication is so important, and what you should do to encourage communication with your HVAC contractor

When you are running a small business, you need to know what is going on in all areas of your company. So why is it that many HVAC companies fail to share all of the details of what they doing with you? Well, Gator Air and Energy has the list of reasons why, and we also have the facts you need to be more prepared for HVAC services in the future.

Frequent Checkups + No Communication = Surprise Fees

If you are a small business owner with your own brick and mortar building, you might be in a contract with a local HVAC company. If so, that contract probably affords you quarterly or offseason checkups on your system. When these checkups happen, do your HVAC technicians stop by, inspect your building’s unit, and then leave? While that kind of behavior is not necessarily a bad thing, knowing what they are doing and when they are doing it can help you as a business owner better understand what you are paying for and not be caught by surprise fees.

Surprise Fees = The Dread of Business Owners Nationwide

The fees that come along with regular maintenance, such as replacing parts or updating your system, are not generally a surprise to the HVAC technician working with your system. However, that HVAC technician is not updating you as to what is going on with your system, then any fee other than the regular maintenance fee will come as an unwelcome surprise to you the business owner. Therefore, it is in the best interests of both the contractor and the business owner to be as upfront as possible, and for the contractor to warn the business owner of possible future problems.

Communication + Information = The End of Surprise Fees

As a manager, you can take control of the situation simply by asking to be kept informed about what the technicians are doing when they visit. Some HVAC companies that work with small business do not worry about telling the managers about what they are doing because managers often do not understand what technicians tell them. HVAC companies figure that it is easier to understand how much the changes will cost rather than what the changes actually are. However, if you ask to be informed regardless of whether or not you will understand what they are saying specifically, then you will compel them to begin the habit of notifying you. With this habit, you can know whether or not you really need to spend the money they ask you to spend, or at the very least, you can prepare yourself for the inevitable expenditure.

Gator Air and Energy = The Ultimate Solution

The best way to insure that you will regularly communicate with your HVAC contractor is to hire a company that already prides itself in their tendency to keep their customers up to date. If you are a small business owner in Gainesville, the solution to your HVAC needs is Gator Air and Energy. To discover how much Gator Air and Energy is willing to share with you, contact us for a consultation, and visit our page on commercial HVAC services for more information.

Indoor Air Quality: The Dangers of Something You Can’t See or Feel

Causes of Indoor Air Pollutants and Ways to Overcome Them

Question: what is in our household air? According to the World Health Organization, fumes from such simple activities as cooking on a gas stove or warming a room with a fireplace can emit dangerous toxins. Carbon monoxide and physical particles are among the toxins that arise from the fire, and others commonly found in our indoor air include microbes, fungi, mold, and radon. In reality, there are many particles in our indoor air, and oftentimes, we do not even realize which of our everyday household tasks put them there. Some of our most basic chores cause emissions, and while most of the effusions are non-toxic, we are still better off with indoor air that is as pure as possible. Therefore, in order to being purifying our indoor air, we must know what specifically causes these pollutants and what can be done to eliminate them.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollutants?

There are literally dozens of sources of indoor pollutant problems, but many of these sources stem from some sort of humidity or water. In our modern houses, humidity is a constant worry. If there is too much, our homes turn into breeding grounds for bacteria, especially mold. Conversely, if there is too little, the dry air could cause eye and respiratory irritation. Finding a comfortable medium with your humidity levels is just one of the many important reasons to have a properly working air conditioning system.

Another cause of pollutants is ventilation. Making sure that your house is properly ventilated is paramount for producing clean air, according to Green Facts. Stagnant air, much like stagnant water, is a great place for mold and other bacteria to form. Especially in houses that are well insulated, it can be difficult to keep air moving throughout the house, so air conditioning systems can significantly assist in these situations.

Various other causes of air pollutants include:

  •    Open fires (gas stove, fireplace, etc.)
  •    Pet dander
  •    Cleaning chemicals
  •    Appliances
  •    Dust
  •    Aerosol sprays

Again, there are countless sources of pollutants, as nearly everything emits something into the atmosphere, but these particular causes that we have discussed are dominant.

What Can We Do About Indoor Air Pollutants?

The answer to this question may be overwhelming, as it seems as though there are as many solutions to getting rid of pollutants as actual pollutants. However, one of the best ways overall to get rid of most pollutants in the house is to replace the filter on your air conditioning unit. This is a simple task that only needs to be done roughly four times per year. To change the filter, all you have to do is measure the size of the filter (oftentimes, the size is already written around the edge of the filter), pick up a new filter at your local hardware store, and replace the old with the new. Thankfully, just by changing the air filter, you can wipe out a large portion of the pollutants in the air.

Another wonderful way to rid your air conditioning system of mold is by cleaning the condenser and evaporator coils. Dirty coils can create mold throughout the system by causing a buildup of water.

Other ways to get rid of pollutants are specific to the type of pollutant of which you are trying to rid your house. To get rid of the toxins emitted by household cleaners, we recommend using more natural or organic cleaning solutions, as these generally have healthier ingredients. Keeping your air conditioning on or just turning on fans will keep the air in your house circulating and thereby prevent stagnant air. Of course, the cleaner you keep your house, the cleaner the air should be.

What Will You Do For Cleaner Air?

Clean air is incredibly important for the health and safety of your family, but it can be difficult to achieve without maintaining your heating and cooling equipment and choosing the right products. Be proactive in the move toward cleaner air by replacing your filters, cleaning your air conditioning coils, and ventilating your house, as these are just a few effective ways to insure a healthy atmosphere for you and your family.

View our page on air quality to learn more about what you can do to keep your home safe, and for more information on the indoor air quality services of Gator Air and Energycontact us.

How to Properly Take Care of Your Ductwork – Part 2 of 2

Answers to common questions about duct inspections: what they are, what they do, when to get them, and who should do them

Finding mold on or around your A/C vents? Problems with spotty air conditioning or poor power? These issues probably indicate that it is a good time to have your air duct system checked by a professional. However, a duct inspection is not a very common occurrence for most households, so oftentimes, homeowners have a lot of questions about them. Therefore, Gator Air and Energy has provided the answers to many of those questions in order to give you a greater understanding of how duct cleanings can help to keep you safe and to save you money.

What Does a Duct Cleaning Entail?

Commonly, a duct cleaning involves searching for leaks and then literally cleaning the ducts. Most professionals have specific tools they use to discover leaks in your system or any other problems associated with your A/C unit or ductwork. These other problems with ductwork can actually be quite numerous, and many homeowners would not even know about them until they received a professional inspection. For a list of what Gator Air and Energy provides in order to solve these problems and for more information on our services that address ducts, visit our duct cleaning page. We even offer dryer vent cleaning, which is a great way to get rid of a potential fire hazard.

When Should I Get My Ducts Cleaned?

The most common answer to this question is: as soon as you see a problem. That is, if you see mold anywhere near vents, if you notice that some rooms are getting A/C but not others, or if you are feeling less air power and still paying a higher energy bill, then there is probably a good chance that you need to have your ducts inspected.

However, if you don’t have these problems but want to be proactive, the best time to check your ducts is in the spring. Remember, your attic will not be astronomically hot yet in the spring, so reaching your ducts without drowning in the heat will be much easier. Also, as we all know, spring leads into the beginning of summer, and especially here in Florida, summer is when the A/C gets used more than ever, so you will definitely want to make sure your A/C is working at peak capacity.

What Good Does Cleaning My Air Ducts Do?

The biggest advantage to cleaning air ducts is cleaner air. Making sure your vents are clean means that the air blowing through them is also clean, and clean air will keep you healthy and less in danger of various respiratory problems. A nice byproduct of clean air ducts is that when they are in good working order, then your A/C does not have to work as hard to keep your house cool. When your air conditioning is not working so hard, it is burning less energy, and this status is advantageous to both your energy bill and the environment. Additionally, taking the time to clean the air ducts allows the opportunity to check for possible water damage and thereby prevent it or keep it from worsening.

How Can I Get My Ducts Cleaned?

Consulting professionals is the easiest and best way to get your air ducts cleaned. By placing the responsibility on professionals, you are ensured the best quality work and the peace of mind that your A/C is performing optimally. Of course, as an added bonus, working with professionals also spares you the hassle of crawling into the attic yourself to inspect every inch of the air ducts before taking them apart and cleaning them out. However, if you still would rather clean them yourself, you might want to see what Bob Vila has to say about this idea first.

Which Professionals Should I Work With?

Hopefully, this review of air ducts has deepened your understanding of your air conditioning system unit and encouraged you to make replacing the filters and cleaning the condenser coils (as mentioned in part one) a regular activity in your home. Finally, if you are from the Gainesville area, don’t forget to contact Gator Air and Energy for more information and to set up an appointment for air duct cleaning.

How to Properly Take Care of Your Ductwork – Part 1 of 2

The Preventative Measures That Keep Your Air Ducts In Peak Condition

Isn’t it every Floridian’s dream to breathe clean air within their mold-free home? If so, then Gator Air and Energy can help you turn your dream into a reality by revealing some simple ways in which you can do just that! By taking care of your ductwork, you can ensure that your air conditioning is operating to its full potential year round, so take advantage of our practical advice by incorporating these preventative practices into your regular home care routine.

Preventative Measures for Clean Air Ducts

Check Your Air Filter

Air filters are supposed to be replaced about four times a year, if not more. Dirty filters allow dirty air to flow through your house, so your air ducts will be filthy. While this occurrence usually doesn’t cause mold, it is still safer to maintain this habit as well as possible because dirty air can have unhealthy effects on you and those around you. Dirty air can trigger allergies, but clean air can help you, your family, and your coworkers avoid allergy issues and other respiratory problems.

Keep Your Condenser Coil Clean

What is the condenser coil? Technically, it converts gas to liquid, includes a refrigerant, and when air is blown over the top of it, it converts it to a cooler temperature. Essentially, the condenser coil is what makes your air conditioning cold. Unfortunately, if the coil or the fan is dirty, the air blowing over it can get restricted. From there, the air blows too cold and creates a lot of condensation. With all that water comes mold and of course, water damage. Both of these are dangerous for your house. Stagnant water not only erodes its surroundings, but it can also be breeding grounds for various insects, according to the World Health Organization.

Monitor Your Energy Bill

If you notice that you are consistently spending a lot more money for the same amount of air conditioning usage each month, then there might be a problem with your air ducts. Even if you can’t see mold, or the air conditioning doesn’t seem to be spotty, a problem such as a leak or a closed air duct valve could still exist. Therefore, it is definitely a good idea to have your air ducts inspected, just in case.

More Advice to Come

Those are the three best preventative practices to prevent you from having to deal with poor ductwork. These practices can save you money on your energy bill and keep the air in your home clean and cold.

However, if you already see mold around your vents or are experiencing erratic air conditioning, then stay tuned for part two of “How to Properly Take Care of Your Ductwork”, in which you can read about the importance of duct dnspections and duct cleanings. In the meantime, however, please contact us with questions or look up our services here.

Is Your Restaurant at Risk? The Importance of Keeping Restaurant Air Ducts Clean

Maintain safety for the customers, employees, and food of your restaurant by cleaning out the air conditioning ducts

If you own a restaurant, you should have your air conditioning ducts cleaned several times per year to make sure that your air is clean and safe for both your employees and your customers. According to TheRestaurantGuide.com, having dirty air ducts in a restaurant can be everything from a food contaminator to a fire hazard. Therefore, Gator Air and Energy has taken the time to answer many questions about why restaurant owners will want to upkeep their air ducts.

What Are the Specific Dangers of Dirty Ducts?

Here are some of the more common dangers of not cleaning one’s restaurant ductwork often enough:

  1.   Fire

  • Fires can be caused by a buildup of grease in the ductwork or ventilation hoods
  • Poorly cleaned hoods cause 21% of all fires
  1.   Bacteria such as e. coli and salmonella

  • These bacteria appear if the meat is not fully cooked
  • Bacteria can lead to irregular heating
  1.   Overheating Kitchen

  • An overheated kitchen leads to faster food spoilage, mold, and other bacteria

 

Dirty air ducts in a restaurant can be everything from a food contaminator to a fire hazard.

How Often Should You Clean the Ducts?

The best way to ensure safety in your kitchen is to set up a regular cleaning schedule. Train your employees to clean only what they can reach, and make sure that cleaning moves through a weekly schedule at least. Setting up a schedule of regular duct cleanings with professionals is also necessary. No matter who you choose to work with for your duct cleanings, just remember that a restaurant will need a thorough duct cleaning anywhere from once a year to four times a year depending on its output. HoodCleaningConsultant.com has more specific standards for how often per year your company should have the ducts cleaned.

How Can You Clean the Ducts?

As mentioned before, you need to hire a professional to clean your ducts once a year at the very least, depending on what you cook. However, you can do some of the work yourself. Remember to clean only what is within safe reach of your employees, and do not try clean out everything without the help of a professional. For instance, don’t try to clean the inside of the ducts, but work on the ventilation hood, and replace filters, etc. It’s recommended that you clean out your kitchen as much as you possibly can.

Keep Up With The Competition

As you may well know, today’s restaurant business is extremely competitive, and cleanliness is more important now than ever. Maintaining the cleanliness of your ducts is not only a necessary health practice to follow, but it is also essential to staying in competition with other restaurants and just staying in business in general.

If you are a local Gainesville restaurant and you would like to contact professionals to clean your ducts, please contact us. For more information on duct cleaning, click here.

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