Energy-Efficient Tips and Systems to Save Money

In celebration of Earth Day on April 22nd, our team at United Refrigeration, Heating and Air is offering energy-efficient tips for refrigeration and HVAC systems this spring.

With soaring fuel costs and wholesale inflation, residential homeowners and commercial businesses around Central Florida are searching for ways to save money. Why not start with your electric bill? Experts say nearly half of energy costs go to heating and cooling. You can guess a big portion of the other half goes to operating appliances and refrigeration systems.

Lower Costs for Air Conditioning and Refrigeration
Whether you live or work in Ocala, The Villages, or our surrounding areas – these sustainable tips could help lower your costs for air conditioning and refrigeration, while also helping to conserve our planet’s energy resources.

First, focus on filters. Different types of filters and filtration systems are necessary in the operation of HVAC systems as well as refrigeration systems with water supply or ice makers. In addition to negative effects on the quality of air and water, a dirty filter will cause systems to struggle and run harder, thus, wasting energy. United’s experts encourage homeowners and business owners to change their air and water filters according to the recommended guidelines in operational manuals or more frequently depending on use.

Second, seal and insulate. A tight seal is necessary in all matters of heating and cooling. In terms of air conditioning, this means you want to ensure all windows, doors, walls, roofs, and attic spaces are insulated and sealed to prevent dollars from flying out the window. Similarly, for refrigeration systems, you will want to ensure proper operations of auto-closers, doors, and gaskets. An air gap or air leak will not only waste energy, but it could also spoil food supplies.

Third, sustain and maintain.  The greatest focus of Earth Day is sustainability, which requires us to protect and conserve resources. Professional maintenance services are simple ways to protect the working parts and sustain the proper operations of your HVAC systems and refrigeration systems. United’s preventative maintenance programs can help you extend the life of your systems, while also saving money. Regular cleanings, evaluations, and repairs can help prevent your systems from overrunning, wasting energy, and breaking down.

Fourth, efficiently upgrade: You can trust United’s experts to advise when the cost for repairing an aging system is no longer in your best interest. Upgrading to energy-efficient systems and appliances is the way to go in today’s world of rising costs. United’s experts offer guidance on systems rated as energy-efficient, and we can perform new installations for an array of makes and models of home air conditioners, commercial HVAC systems, refrigerators, coolers, freezers, ice machines, soft serve machines, slush machines, and commercial walk-ins.

For over 30 years, we’ve been keeping systems operating efficiently for customers throughout Sumter and Marion Counties. Call United Refrigeration, Heating and Air today at 352-629-1187 to speak with our professionals about installations, system efficiency, or repair services.

How HVAC Systems Affect Real Estate Value

In terms of real estate, HVAC systems running with efficiency can be assets with value. And if you haven’t noticed, Florida’s weather and real estate markets are running hot this spring.

Fortunately, the experts at United Refrigeration, Heating and Air provide value-added services to help buyers and sellers with HVAC inspections, tune-ups, repairs, and new installations.

Valuable Tips for HVAC Inspections and Property Sales

This spring, real estate value is top of mind for homeowners and business owners across North Central Florida.  Experts will tell you that the quality of an HVAC system and the condition of ductwork are key components of a thorough inspection before any property sale or purchase. 

In real estate, a neglected or inefficient HVAC system could result in a lower offer or reduced sales price. As your HVAC service company, United’s experts offer these valuable tips:

  1. Most simply, property owners should regularly change system air filters to trap and prevent dust and debris from hindering airflow. A clean filter is critical for HVAC operations, and no one wants stale, dusty air during a property showing.  To elevate value, United can also install high-quality air purification systems for homes and businesses.
  2. Of course, potential buyers will want to hire an inspector, but it is just as important for sellers to schedule a professional inspection prior to listing a property.  In addition to inspecting, United’s techs can help clean, repair, and enhance AC operations. If needed, United may also offer solutions for a new HVAC installation. A seller’s inspection is one of the best ways to avoid and prevent any unexpected surprises during the real estate process.
  3. For real estate transactions, a basic inspection will verify the age and quality of HVAC systems, but savvy sellers will also request a maintenance tune-up. It is important to repair any damage, leaks, clogged filters, or corrosion in or around your system that would deplete its value. United’s experts can also verify efficiency ratings, fuel type, installation details, thermostat settings, warranties, and other information about the HVAC systems.
  4. For overall value, United emphasizes it is important to check system components and inspect ductwork to ensure there are not any issues, gaps, loose connections, or problems that could hinder operations. Plus, United’s experts will make sure outdoor units are free of debris, properly covered, and secured as necessary with hooks, bolts, or straps.
  5. Finally, Florida sellers can show value by providing buyers with maintenance records to illustrate how well you have taken care of your HVAC system.  Seeing how you’ve invested in protecting your system provides buyers with peace of mind and proof of value.

Call United’s experts at 352-629-1187 for HVAC inspections, maintenance, repairs, and new installations at homes and businesses throughout Ocala, The Villages, and surrounding areas.

7 HVAC Tips for Turning Up the Heat in Florida

Keeping Warm in Florida

Despite popular belief, indoor heating can be a necessity during North Central Florida’s winter months.  Many folks simply do not realize that Floridians also need to turn up the heat.

Typically, the surrounding areas of Ocala and The Villages range from the 40s to 60s this time of year, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t seen a few dips into the 30s. For those frigid Florida nights, consider these tips from our HVAC experts at United Refrigeration, Heating and Air.

How Homeowners and Businessowners can improve heating efficiency:

  • Set the right temperatures.  Thermostat recommendations for proper temperatures vary from model to model, but 65 to 70 degrees is what most advise for heating an indoor space.  United’s experts can provide advice on the most efficient settings for your HVAC system.
  • Be prepared for fluctuations.  Rapid hot or cold weather shifts can be tough on HVAC systems. A programmable thermostat could be helpful in making advance settings for weather fluctuations. Also, smart thermostats are convenient for programming efficiency.
  • Always keep air filters clean. This is one of the simplest but essential actions for protecting the longevity and operational value of your HVAC system.  It is also necessary for clean air, as the filter is the first line of defense in trapping debris, dust, and allergens.
  • Be proactive about maintenance. To prevent a heating problem before it strikes, schedule a professional maintenance check-up. United’s experts will perform a thorough inspection and a complete tune-up to ensure you stay warm and cozy this winter.
  • Promptly perform heating repairs. Proper heating and operations of the indoor air-handler and outdoor unit require working parts.  United’s heating experts can assist with servicing your existing equipment, making necessary repairs, or upgrading your HVAC system.
  • Insulate for a protective seal.  In addition to keeping doors and windows closed, you can boost heating efficiency by adding weather strips or sealant around frames to prevent the cold air from getting inside. Attic insulation is also a wise investment for boosting efficiency.
  • Take precaution with space heaters.  Many Floridians see value in portable space heaters for temporary warmth in a small space; however, NEVER leave space heaters unattended, DO NOT use with an extension cord, and review all device warnings to avoid risks.

Contact United’s technicians for services and heating recommendations for your system. Professional services and maintenance are the keys to saving money, promoting longevity of your HVAC system, and keeping you in control of comfortable room temperatures. Call United Refrigeration, Heating and Air today at 352-629-1187 to discuss your options for maintaining, repairing, replacing, or upgrading your HVAC systems.

10 Stormproof Tips to Protect HVAC Systems

AC Maintenance

With Florida’s storm season ramping up during National Preparedness Month, the experts at United Refrigeration, Heating and Air have some stormproof tips to protect your HVAC systems.

For this year’s National Preparedness Month, Ready.gov is urging Americans to: “Prepare to Protect. Preparing for disasters is protecting everyone you love.”  Well, during hot temperatures and stormy weather in North Central Florida, we can attest that air conditioning is essential for staying cool and protected inside the safety of our homes and businesses. 

Important ways to protect your Florida homes, businesses, and HVAC systems:

  1. Know the location of your electrical boxes and shutoff valves. In Florida, homeowners and business owners need to know how to take vital safety steps, such as shutting off electric, gas, or water during an emergency.
  2. Take action to protect systems from power surges. It is a no-brainer to unplug your TV or computer during a lightning storm, but major appliances and HVAC systems are also at risk. Consider shutting down power to certain systems during severe weather warnings.
  3. Monitor exterior areas for water pooling, flooding, or drainage issues.  Floridians must take measures to protect their property from water damage. If needed, United’s technicians can elevate AC units or design platforms to raise and protect HVAC systems at risk.
  4. Regularly check indoors for leaking pipes, seepage, or corrosion.  Water issues can damage indoor air systems and other parts of your homes and businesses. Make every effort to remove water and call in the professionals if you spot a leak or water damage.
  5. Protect outdoor AC units from high-force winds. Ocala, the Villages, and surrounding areas can experience brutal winds during hurricane season. United can help ensure your AC units are covered, protected, and secured with bolts, hooks, and straps where needed. 
  6. Remove projectile objects and clean-up outdoor debris. It is obvious to store furniture and potted plants in a sheltered location to protect windows. Debris and small projectile objects, however, are also able to damage your outdoor AC unit or block air flow.
  7. After a storm or outage, schedule a maintenance check.  United’s professionals can help you determine if there was any damage done during a storm. Wind, lightening, and rain can leave behind obvious signs of damage as well as hard-to-detect issues.
  8. Make repairs quickly when necessary. If you see a leak or notice a malfunction, be sure to act quick before other parts are damaged. In addition to repairing any mechanical issues, United’s technicians can offer solutions to protect systems and prevent future damage. 
  9. Plan ahead for system repairs or upgrades. With preparedness in mind, it is important to budget for potential costs associated with disasters, emergencies, or system breakdowns.
  10. Benefit from a preventative maintenance program. Control costs and protect the longevity of your system by starting a maintenance program for cleanings, inspections, and services to prevent a costly disaster before it strikes. 

United Refrigeration, Heating and Air’s team provides emergency service as well as preventative maintenance to keep Florida homes and businesses running efficiently. Call 352-629-1187 to schedule your system maintenance, repair services, or new installations.

Indoor Comfort When Outdoor Temperatures Fluctuate

Around Ocala and The Villages, February is known for outdoor temperature fluctuations, bouncing between 47 and 74 degrees on average.  Hot, cold, warm, or cool – the temperatures fluctuate not only by the day, but also by the hour. This means your HVAC system may be working hard to switch back-and-forth from heating to air conditioning.   

Thermostats, Settings, and HVAC System Tips

United Refrigeration, Heating and Air’s team has helped keep systems up and running for over 30 years. In addition to general maintenance and service questions, United’s customers frequently ask our technicians for suggestions on how they can maintain comfortable temperatures in their homes and businesses.   Here are a few tips for indoor comfort when North Central Florida’s weather outside is unpredictable or sporadic.
1.) Invest in a Programmable Thermostat: A programmable thermostat allows you to adjust hourly temperatures according to your needs, even when you are not at home.  You can also program advance settings according to weather fluctuations. Today’s smart thermostats offer modern features and controls via your smartphone apps and devices.

Senior male reaching up to open filter holder for air conditioning filter in ceiling

2.) Set and Adjust Temperatures: HVAC system manufacturers often suggest thermostat settings for efficiency in model manuals or on their websites.  For heating efficiency, some recommend between 65 and 70 degrees during colder months. Programmable thermostats allow you to adjust temperature needs, but some experts suggest keeping systems set at one temperature.  Put simply, each situation is unique, which is why we recommend asking United’s technicians for advice in setting your unique system for efficiency.

3.) Optimize Opportunities of Rest: When milder temperatures prevail, systems across Ocala and The Villages could have the opportunity to downshift operations.  For example, if outdoor temperatures feel comfortable, consider opening the windows for fresh air.  If heat creeps back with the mid-day sun, consider running ceiling fans in a counter-clockwise direction for downward airflow to keep rooms cooler. Alternatively, if there is a slight chill, consider supplementing heat in small areas with a portable space heater. When your HVAC system is at rest, be sure to utilize ventilation systems to expel heat and moisture. For example, reduce humidity and steam by running your kitchen exhaust fans or bathroom exhaust fans. 

4.) Clean Filters and Perform Maintenance: Your HVAC filter is the first line of defense in trapping debris and filtering particles like dust, dander, pet hair, and other allergens in the air. It is a fact that filter changes help to ensure that your system runs efficiently.  Cleaning and general maintenance are also the keys to saving money, promoting longevity of your system, and keeping you in control of comfortable room temperatures now and throughout the year.

There are many brands and types of heating and air conditioning systems.  Ask United’s experts which filters, preventative maintenance schedules, and thermostat settings are right for you.Call United Refrigeration, Heating and Air today at 352-629-1187 to discuss your options for maintaining, repairing, replacing, improving indoor air quality, or upgrading your HVAC system.

Why America Celebrates Air Conditioning

In addition to honoring America’s birthday this July, the team at United Refrigeration, Heating and Air joins the nation in celebrating the life-changing benefits of modern air conditioning.

National Air Conditioning Day

As an official observance on July 17, National Air Conditioning Day recognizes the historical advancements of air conditioning.  Originally invented in 1902 by an American man named Willis Haviland Carrier, the electrical AC system has evolved over the decades to revolutionize industrial growth, promote year-round productivity in workplaces, and ultimately improve family life for Americans and people around the world. 

Air conditioning is arguably one of the most important inventions of the twentieth century.  First, AC systems have allowed for population growth in even the hottest and most humid climates.  Can you imagine your residential home in The Villages or your Ocala business running without air conditioning?  How would your family or your team get any work done in Florida’s brutally hot temperatures? How well would you sleep at night in the tropical heat?  It seems most people would agree that air conditioning has been the answer to living, working, playing, and even sleeping better.

Summertime is the Season for AC Appreciation

July through August is the hottest time of the year in most U.S. locations, especially Florida.  Beyond keeping you comfortable this season, there are health and safety benefits to having access to conditioned air.  For example, reports have shown a decline in fatal heat-related illnesses since the 1960s, as air conditioning became more common in residential homes and public places.  Over the past several decades, the cost-effectiveness and increasing accessibility of high-functioning AC systems have helped make homes and businesses safer and more comfortable.

Stay Cool with Preventative Maintenance

At United Refrigeration, Heating and Air, we make it our top priority to ensure your AC system stays ready to handle the summer season in Florida. Remember that the summer and early fall months can bring hurricane-force winds and dangerous weather, which is why a maintenance check prior to a big storm could protect you from any future problems with your system.

As a full-service residential AC repair and commercial HVAC service company, we are fully equipped to provide emergency services to keep you cool this summer as well as provide preventative maintenance to protect you throughout the year.  

United Refrigeration, Heating and Air’s team has helped keep systems running efficiently for over 30 years. Call 352-629-1187 to set your next appointment for HVAC system maintenance or repair services.

5 Tips for Heating Up the New Year

As we ring in the New Year, we are also bringing in cooler temperatures.  This means HVAC systems across North Central Florida have shifted from cooling to heating to keep you comfortable.

With Florida’s generally milder climate during the winter months, the majority of homes and businesses around Ocala and The Villages utilize highly efficient central air and heat-pump systems operating on electricity. Heat pumps and A/C systems offer a year-round solution for Floridians, but there are some homes with gas-operated furnaces in our area.

As your full-service HVAC experts, we can assist with maintaining your existing equipment or upgrading your systems in 2019.  To start the New Year off right, here are simple tips to help you save money, ensure efficiency, and extend the life of your heating system:

Change the Filter

It may not feel like your system is running as hard in the winter, but it is just as important to change your air filter in January as it is to change it during Florida’s brutal summer months. Continual, clean airflow is essential for proper functioning.  A clogged filter or obstructed vent can hinder air circulation, interfere with comfortable room temperatures, and prolong run-time, which costs you more money.

Keep it Clean

Regularly monitor both your outdoor unit and air handler for any noticeable changes or issues. Check to make sure there are not any loose connections, which could create a dangerous electrical issue.  Also, remove any debris around your outdoor unit and make sure the condenser coils remain clean.

Promote Efficiency

Different manufacturers mention thermostat settings for heating efficiency, some of which recommend between 65 degrees and 70 degrees for heating purposes during the winter months. Many of us love the programmable thermostat options for adjusting hourly temperature needs, but some experts suggest keeping your system set at one temperature.  During your next check-up, be sure to ask United’s technician for advice in setting your system for optimal efficiency.

Take Precaution

If you are supplementing heat in a small area with a portable space heater this winter, be sure to only use a wall outlet that doesn’t have anything else plugged into it.  Also, never use an extension cord, which could cause overheating or electrical issues. If you are a Floridian with a gas furnace in your home, we also advise the installation of a carbon-monoxide detector to ensure safety.

Annual Check-Up

The New Year could be a perfect time to schedule preventative maintenance or a tune-up.  Remember that dirty or corroded parts and other abnormal functions can cause your system to work harder and use more electricity than necessary. Prevention could be the key to saving money and promoting safety.


Happy New Year! Call United Refrigeration, Heating and Air today at 352-629-1187 to speak with one of our experienced professionals about your options for maintaining, repairing, replacing, or upgrading your HVAC system.