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Heat Wave Safety for Outdoor Survival in High Ambient Temperatures – Viewpoints of an Arizona Air Conditioning Service Center

Arizona’s premier Phoenix A/C repair and A/C installation company, American Cooling And Heating, offers unique, air conditioning service viewpoint for survival in the high ambient area temperatures.

The area around Phoenix AZ ranks among the worst for high ambient temperatures. For the homeowner or the business owner, the cost of Air Conditioning Repair or A/C Installation involves time, some inconvenience and a major financial investment. But for the Phoenix A/C Service Technician, the cost of doing business during extreme Arizona heat waves can involve major health risks and precautions must be taken to avoid serious injury or death.

“Air Conditioning Service Techs and Installers face two major areas of extreme exposure to high ambient temperatures: 1) While installing primary exterior A/C equipment on the shade-less side of a home or business and 2) While installing air handlers in home attics or overhead business storage areas. Knowing how to avoid heatstroke and other high ambient temperature complications is critical to survival as an air conditioning technician,” AC&H Gilbert regional technical expert.

Triple digit temperatures make the external functions of A/C repair, A/C installation or A/C services difficult and risky. The symptoms of heatstroke, dehydration and serious breathing issues can come quickly and without opportunity for self-preservative reactions.

Working in the attic also presents serious health risks – even to an extreme that far exceeds the dangers of installing A/C products and systems under exposure to severe external temperatures. Studies performed by the Building Science Corporation conclude that Las Vegas and Phoenix attic temperatures typically hit 150-degrees during high ambient temperatures. The same tests allot 180-degrees as the max acceptable in an enclosed attic space near the sheathing.

* The Building Science Corporation is a science consulting firm working out of Boston, MA.

Identifying the Risk Factors of Arizona’s High Ambient Temperatures

The techs from American Cooling And Heatingunderstand the risks associated with their job, and they know how to practice high temperature safety. Here is some of the safety procedures implemented by the AC&H Phoenix air conditioning installation crews:

* Accept That Risk Factors Exist—Staying safe demands a safety conscious mindset. The AC&H air conditioning service crews deal with snakes, critters and weather conditions. Each situation involves certain risk factors. Staying safe is a matter of knowing how those factors can affect the tech’s health and survival.

* Know How To Recognize the Signs of Heatstroke – The danger begins with one or both of two less risky heat-related complications: 1) Heat cramps which involve fatigue, thirst, excess sweating and cramps, and 2) Heat exhaustion which follows on the tail of untreated heat cramp conditions. Heat exhaustion typically involves dizziness, headache, cool and moist skin, and muscle cramps. Drinking cool nonalcoholic fluids, finding shade, seeking reprieve in an air-conditioned environment of taking a cool shower can treat either condition. If the situation persists, seek immediate medical aid.

Heatstroke typically follows in the wake of untreated heat clamps and untreated heat exhaustion. The symptoms include:

• Elevated body temperature

• Hot dry skin due to a lack of sweating

• Upset stomach accompanied by nausea and vomiting

• Changes in skin color due to rising body temperature

• Shallow and rapid breathing

• Increasing and rapid heart rate

• Intense and throbbing headache

• A sense of confusion, sometimes accompanied by hallucinations, seizures or difficulty with communications and speaking

• Muscle cramps, weakness and sometimes limp muscles

• Unconsciousness.

Surviving in High Humidity, No Wind and Triple Digit Temperatures

Installing heating and cooling equipment when the humidity is high, the winds are silent and the Phoenix temperatures are cracking the triple digit mark demands attention to personal health details. It’s about doing a great job while taking care of self during the process. Whether working in Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale or any other AC&H serviced Phoenix region, the A/C techs avoid danger by practicing the following simple safety rules:

• Limited Exposure – Schedule work hours for early morning and evening hours. Take more breaks in shady or air-conditioned areas.

• Increased Intake of Fluids – Drink water when thirsty and when not thirsty. Also take in fluids that can increase body salt and body minerals. A common recipe is to mix Gatorade with 50% water.

• Avoid – Beverages that pump up the sugar level or that contain alcohol.

• Eat light – small infrequent meals that are easily digested, small sandwiches, protein bars, etc.

• Where protective clothing – sun hats, long sleeve cotton shirts, sunglasses, gloves, use sunscreen.

• When working in direct sunlight, get to shade at intervals to avoid overheating and if any sign of overheating begins, then immediately get to shade and cool down.

• When working in an attic, exit at intervals to prevent overheating and exit immediately upon signs of overheating.

• Take Advantage of Available Air Conditioning – The AC&H Phoenix A/C installation team travels in air-conditioned vehicles. When necessary, the techs crank up the company furnished, air conditioned trucks and enjoy a moment of body and mind refreshment.

• If heat related danger signs manifest then call an ambulance and seek medical attention.

American Cooling and Heating will do its best to provide service to it’s Arizona customers no matter what temperatures and harsh conditions there may be, providing quick and efficient Air Conditioning and Heat Pump Repair or Replacement. The company’s A/C services are available in Mesa, Tempe, Chandler, Gilbert, Scottsdale, Phoenix, Glendale, Peoria, and all surrounding areas in Arizona. Call today! AC&H will exceed all customer expectations in every sense of the word.

Disclaimer: American Cooling And Heating provides professional HVAC services only and the content contained herein is opinion only. For detailed heat wave safety measures, readers should check with a government-confirmed source of healthcare or safety authority. The information contained herein is meant for basic informational purposes only. It is not intended to serve as safety, health, or medical advice, substitute for a doctor’s appointment or to be used for diagnosing or treating a disease. Users of this information are advised to consult with their physician or verified by a licensed healthcare provider before making any decisions concerning their health. Safety related issues should be confirmed with OSHA or other licensed safety authority.

Communicating With Your Phoenix AC Repair Center – Introduction to Central AC Systems

Communication, an important part of AC repair workAfter the recent 72-degree days, you may already know you need a Phoenix AC repair center. CBS 5 AZ puts it this way: “Tons of sun…a wonderful winter.”

A late season storm may turn the tide, but it will be a short-lived change. The cooling season is just around the corner. Even if you don’t yet know what to expect from your air conditioning system now is a good time to take action. Stay ahead of the crowd. Get an AC checkup ASAP.

But, good comfort choices aren’t just about choosing the best Phoenix AC installation or repair team. You also need to know something about the equipment. When you have to call for a Chandler AC repair tech, it helps to know the jargon used by heating and cooling professionals.

You can count on American Cooling and Heating to guide you straight, but we like to provide our customers with as much useful information as we can. We wouldn’t be here without you. The following introduction to Central Air conditioning equipment and installation processes is crafted just for you.


From Amanda to Trane, The Core Design of Central AC Systems Function Alike

However, aside from primary system blueprints, central air conditioners share five key requirements:  

  1. They must be installed and connected to ductwork
  2. The ductwork must be right sized for the unit and for your home
  3. Climate plays a major role in product selection
  4. Performance is directly proportional to the condition of your home and the right sizing of the AC unit to your home
  5. Reliability depends as much on the skills and reputation of the Phoenix AC contractor as it does the quality of the installed unit.

As to Phoenix air conditioning installation and repair, look for a company with an A+ Better Business Bureau rating, complaint-free membership in the Arizona Registrar of Contractors and a history of customer satisfaction. Don’t forget to confirm matters concerning license, bonding and insurance. Also take advantage of the consumer resources available via the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA). You will find American Cooling and Heating throughout the ACCA Phoenix area listings.   

As to unit comparisons, provides a comprehensive selection of articles, efficiency ratings and wholesale pricing details for current central AC models. You can also take advantage of the free AC&H air conditioning and heating consumer literature.


Reliability of Central Air Conditioning As Measured By The Installation Pros

According to research performed by the editors of Consumer Search, Goodman products (Amana brands, Goodman and Janitrol) brought in more complaints and criticism than any other brand of cooling product. However, the majority of professional AC contractors argue that the issue is not due to the quality of the Goodman products so much as it is related to inexperienced, lazy or shoddy installation technicians.

Typically, companies such as Carrier and Trane establish rigid installation and repair requirements for technicians. Goodman is known to allow less skilled and poorly trained repairmen the freedom of installing their central air conditioning systems without extended company training. Some say that when dealing with Goodman AC products, you should always find a skilled AC contractor. Management at American Cooling and Heating says you need skilled technicians for any type of AC installation or repair in the Phoenix area or elsewhere.

If you want your system to cool efficiently, last as it should and reduce your energy expenses, follow these simple steps: 

  • Hire the right Phoenix AC contractor
  • Right size the system for your home
  • Perform yearly maintenance.

We are here to help you get started. Get a summer checkup now. Our skilled techs can examine your system’s: 

  • Electrical components and wiring
  • Operating pressures, including refrigerant charge
  • Airflow and temperature management
  • Air filter and thermostat life expectation
  • Amperages and motors
  • Outdoors coil
  • AND much more.


The Invisible Costs of Using Air Conditioning Systems

In times past, the Southwest has been known to use “swamp coolers” for general residential cooling purposes. The energy consumption of a swamp cooler – better known as an evaporative cooler – is typically two to four times less than a modern air conditioning system. Thus arise a serious question:

With 56 percent of the total home energy bill going toward heating and cooling, is the switch toward air conditioning worth the affect it has on climate, health and resources?

In a white paper produced by Arunima Chatterjee and Melanie Lenart, the process of energy versus water as a home cooling method is studied in detail. The researchers compare the costs for cooling a typical 2,000-square-foot home using both types of cooling systems. In application, they say that a swamp cooler can cool the home for as little as 250 kilowatt-hours per month, whereas an air conditioner will consume 850 kilowatt-hours per month when cooling the same Tucson Arizona home. This implies a monthly cost difference of better than $60.00 at current Arizona electric rates.

Water, a Natural Resource Not Fully Accounted In Expense

In a further report from the Environmental Research Laboratory at the University of Arizona, T. Lewis Thompson noted that a swamp cooler could use an average of 150 gallons of water in a single day. Arizona temperatures, extended heat waves and battles with run-away fires enhance the value of water. Since standard air conditioning systems do not make direct use of water, it would first appear that the swamp coolers are wasting valuable resources.

However, University of Arizona researchers have been quick to point out the indirect water consumption of a typical air conditioning system. In Arizona, hydropower consumes approximately 65 gallons of water for every kilowatt-hour of generated electricity. Likewise, coal-fired plants consume around half a gallon to produce one kilowatt-hour of electricity.

Effectiveness, The Primary Measuring Stick

Since swamp coolers make use of evaporative cooling, their effectiveness is hindered during monsoon season. The storms bring moist air, but the swamp coolers function best in a dry environment. Air conditioning is not limited by external weather conditions. Being thermostatically controlled, air conditioning systems provide Arizona homeowners with regulated temperature regardless of external or internal humidity.

Climate Changes

Some researchers claim that air conditioners generate more global warming than do swamp coolers. Yet the argument typically fails to include the greenhouse gases produced by coal-driven electrical sources.

Issues Pertaining to Personal Health

Researchers also claim that evaporative cooling provides a better quality of indoor air. Reasoning centers around the filtering system of a swamp cooler. In principle, the pads of a swamp cooler are always moist, thereby capable of trapping dust and pollen more effectively than conventional air conditioning systems. Additionally, the swamp coolers are praised for adding moisture to the inside air, thus preventing dry eyes, throats and skin.

However, air conditioners are credited as more efficient when dealing with re-circulated indoor air. The counter-arguments also suggest that conventional air conditioning systems magnify indoor air pollution, yet high-efficiency filters can easily remedy the situation.

Stay in the Swamp or Switch to Modern Air Conditioning

Most Arizona residents now use conventional air conditioning units. None of the above arguments take into account the benefits of calling an Arizona heat pump installation expert. The continual yearly rise in Arizona temperatures will force society to consider every option in energy conservation, resource preservation and personal health.

Right now, a heat pump provides a reasonable point of balance. By increasing the energy efficiency of home heating methods, heat pumps create an effective balance to a difficult situation.

I Live in Arizona: Is My Landlord Responsible For Keeping Our Air Conditioner Running?

Arizona Statues Concerning Landlords and Air Conditioner Repairs

Landlord responsibilities is a common question among Arizona renters. With the current Phoenix temperatures hitting triple digits, the primary issue turns toward home cooling and the associated air conditioner equipment. So what do you do when the summer is unbearably hot, your air conditioning system is broken, and the landlord refuses to remedy the problem?

Is it legal for your landlord to put the cost of air conditioner repair back on you as the renter?

The Answers as Worded By Law

The following information is taken from the website of the Arizona State Legislature. For the sake of copyright laws and space limitations, the content herein is condensed to meet the needs of a brief understanding of (Az. Rev. Stat. § 33-1324(a)(4).

As with any legal information and activities, please consult an authorized and state licensed attorney before proceeding with any type of legal process.

From Arizona § 33-1324 (a), a landlord is required to:

* 1) Comply with current building health codes and safety codes

* 2) Make repairs as necessary to ensure that a rented premise is fit for habitation

* 3) Maintain a safe premise with procedures that ensure a clean environment

* 4) “Maintain in good and safe working order and condition all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and other facilities and appliances, including elevators, supplied or required to be supplied by him”

* 5) Maintain adequate rubbish and waste disposal processes and equipment

* 6) Supply reliable and reasonable quantities of running water, “reasonable heat and reasonable air-conditioning or cooling” when offered as a component of the rental unit or as demanded by seasonal weather conditions.

Section six goes on to detail exceptions for air conditioning, cooling equipment and hot water supply sources that are in the exclusive control of the presiding tenant or of a public utility company. Further exceptions are included in sections (b), (c) and (d) of the statute. See full details at:

Your Options Under Arizona Law

When a landlord refuses to react to a necessary and required air conditioner repair task, Arizona law may establish a situation which identifies the rented unit as “unfit” for habitation. As such, the renter, you, may pursue any of the following remedies:

* Repair and Deduct – See (Az. Rev. Stat. § 33-1363)

* Withhold Rent – See (Az. Rev. Stat. § 33-1365)

* Temporarily Move Out – See (Az. Rev. Stat. § 33-1364)

* Permanently Move Out – If a landlord fails to keep rental property in a status that is “fit for habitation,” tenants have the right to move out without facing any responsibility for future rent.

To Summarize the Full Document

Unless the landlord and the tenant of a single family dwelling agree in writing prior to a condition of disrepair, the landlord is typically deemed responsible for maintaining adequate building-related heating, air conditioning and other components that constitute the building’s fitness for habituation. In general, if a rented building’s roofing structure, plumbing system, electrical wiring and outlet components, heating equipment or air conditioner system fails due to normal wear and tear, the landlord is required to correct the issue.

In practice: Contact a local attorney.

Tips To Help You Resolve Common Cooling Problems and Common Heating Problems

The Certainty of Air Conditioning Repairs

Air conditioning breakdowns typically come during times of severe need , but such is the order of the mechanical universe. Nothing ever breaks when the timing is great. Otherwise, automobiles would only breakdown at the garage. Lawnmowers would only crack a casing after the last cut of the season. And air conditioning, heat pumps or furnaces would only fail during the minimum-need temperatures of the season.

Here are some common cooling and common heating problems that you can remedy yourself.

When Air Conditioners Provide Poor or Zero Cooling

For poor or zero cooling, you can try these four common fixes associated with air conditioning:

  1. Thermostat Settings – Homeowners sometimes disable the automatic thermostat control settings, especially when heat pumps are involved. During the winter, someone may set the system on forced electric heat. Come summer, the cooling stage must be enabled. Also check to ensure that the fan is set on auto and that the temperature is set to a reasonable level suited to the season.
  2. Circuit Breakers – When systems overheat, it can force the air conditioning or heat pump circuit breakers to trip. After resetting, be sure to check for smoke, unusual sounds or extreme heat coming from the external units.
  3. System Freeze – When an air conditioning unit is forced to labor beyond the expected time frames, freezing may occur. If your indoor fan is functioning without throwing an adequate air flow, check for frozen coils. Set the thermostat above current temperatures. Let the system remain in shutdown mode for several hours. Use the time to clean the air filters.
  4. Yearly Reoccurrence of System Freezes – Most likely your air conditioning system or heat pump unit is insufficient for your home; however, you might want to investigate the insulation above your ceilings, below your floors and in the walls.

When Furnaces or Heat Pumps Provide Poor or Zero Heating

Common heating problems can be similar to common cooling problems. Here are four possible reasons that your furnace or heat pump fails to function correctly:

  1. Thermostat or Circuit Breaker Problems – Apply the same check and solutions as those pertaining to cooling problems. Just adjust to approach to match heating rather than cooling.
  2. Broken Wiring – Note: For broken high-voltage electric lines, contact your electrician or your heating and cooling expert. That said: thermostat wires are easier to repair. Animals and/or falling debris can dislodge, cut or break your thermostat wiring at the source of connection to your heat pump or your furnace. Inspect and correct as needed.
  3. Closed Gas or Fuel Valves – If you just purchased an older home and the inside fuel lines are closed, determine the cause before attempting to reopen the flow. If the external lines are closed, call the gas company or your local HVAC repair center.
  4. Restricted Airflow – Start by replacing the air filters. Also check and clean the coils on inside units. If using a heat pump, check and clean the coils on the external unit.

Dealing With Not-So-Common Cooling and Heating Problems

Sometimes you can’t fix it yourself. When capacitors, fan motors or compressors go bad, most homeowners are forced to call upon a local HVAC service center. Yet locating a reliable air conditioning repair company is much like searching for an auto mechanic. You want straight-forward answers and honest prices without any haggling. And you want someone who really seems to care about your heating and cooling problems.

Here are four tips to help you choose the right home heating and cooling expert:

  1. Ask for evidence of current licenses and insurances
  2. Make sure the company is Bonded
  3. Get and follow-up on references
  4. Check the BBB reports.


Fixing common heating and common cooling problems is not difficult. However, most HVAC equipment breakdowns turn out to be a bit more major than expected. It never hurts to handle a few things on your own, but be prepared to call for help when help is necessary.

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