Real Estate Show with Calculated Comfort

Real Estate Show with Calculated Comfort

Full Video Transcript Below

[00:00:00] Alice Lema: Well, good morning, Southern Oregon. And welcome back to the real estate show. I'm Alice Lema. I'm a broker here in beautiful Southern Oregon with John L. Scott real estate. I'm your host to the show. I'm so happy to have you back. And today we're going to talk about volatility. We're going to talk about volatility and the weather cause that's Southern Oregon. Every, every spring we go from cold to colder, to hot to cold. We're also going to talk about volatility in the market. So talking about the weather first, because we go through such extremes in temperatures.

[00:00:37] During our spring time, we asked Mike Levine, the technical manager of calculated comfort heating and air conditioning company, to come on the show today and kind of talk to us about how the volatility of the weather stresses our heating and air systems, and also get some good ideas about what to do to take care of our systems. A lot of people really don't even look at their, their furnace and their air conditioner much after they buy their house.

[00:01:01] And, you know, they actually would benefit greatly by regular maintenance. So Mike Levine, technical manager calculated comfort heating, and air is going to be on today to talk about general maintenance, what you can do during the springtime. He's also going to talk about what not to do because as homeowners that is sometimes even more important. And you know, I know, you know what I mean? So looking forward to hearing from Mike Levine today, calculated comfort, heating and air.

[00:01:27] Now talking about volatility in the market, the buyers are still stinging from all those rate increases. They went up fast, they went up hard. And now here we are, we're firmly in the fives.

[00:01:38] Some people are paying six and a half percent. It has to do with your credit score. It has to do with your down payment. It has to do with the program you're in, has to do with, you know, what kind of job you have. There's a lot of elements, but I'm telling you we're in the fives. And some, some sixes and the federal reserve bank is talking about having even more rate increases this summer. So it's making people nervous. Some people are wondering if there's going to be a crash. If you look out and listen to the national experts, we don't see a lot of predictions in that direction. We do see some price adjusting and some normalizing of the market.

[00:02:15] But at the end of the day, we still have more then we do supply and that goes for Southern Oregon as well. So it's still a good time to sell folks. If you've got a house that you're thinking about listing, and you want to make a change, it's, it's still a good time to do that. And if you're buying, hang in there, there's more listings coming up every week. It's not as dramatic as it was of a fistfight to get a house even just a few months ago.

[00:02:42] So it looks like a normalizing market might be in our future as long as the rates don't continue to go too dramatically up too dramatically fast. Okay. So with that said, let's take a quick break and get back with Mike Levine of calculated comfort heating.

[00:02:58] Well, welcome back to the real estate show everybody. I'm Alice Lema broker here in beautiful Southern Oregon with John L. Scott real estate. And today I am so happy to have as our guest Mike Levine. He's the maintenance manager of calculated comfort, heating and air. Welcome, Mike. Thank you so much for being here. Well, you know heaters and air conditioners are always a hot topic with not only homeowners, but also renters.

[00:03:25] And it's so great to have a technician like yourself, be on the show today. Would you please maybe talk a little bit about calculated comfort as a company and just kind of bring us up to speed, how y'all got started?

[00:03:40] Mike Levine: Sure thing. This company got started back in early 2016. There's a bunch of good old boys that were doing HPAC for various different companies. They decided to break away and start their own business. And originally started with just four guys, you know, two installers, a sales men, and a service tech. And from there it just had this snowball effect that just picked up speed. And we've been here ever since.

[00:04:08] Alice Lema: Well, when you're good at what you do, especially in a small town, small area like ours, you really stand out and you get busy, which is a good thing.

[00:04:16] Mike Levine: Oh yeah. Nobody likes idle hands.

[00:04:19] Alice Lema: No, no, not at all. So one of the things that comes up a lot when we're buying and selling houses is what's going on with the heating and air. And when we were talking before the show, you were kind of letting us know some of the seasonal things that can be done. So why don't you speak to that?

[00:04:40] Mike Levine: Sure thing, you know, as the seasons change, various different things can happen to a heating and air conditioning system. You know, you're going from winter into spring and summer now. A lot of things that people need to do is just be aware that they're basically just breathing all the particulate in the air from wintertime.

[00:04:58] They have family gatherings, they have buddies barbecues, you know, since COVID is letting loose, people are able to gather again, there's all this, all this stuff floating around inside the house because people close their windows in winter. And main thing is changing filters. Just a simple little thing as maintaining a filter once a month.

[00:05:20] You know, every three months minimally is what I recommend can increase, can increase your resistance to a lot of cold sicknesses, sinus problems and things like that. And plus it will help make your system last a lot longer.

[00:05:38] Alice Lema: Well, I don't think people realize how important filters are. And, and the illness filtration is very interesting. What about allergies?

[00:05:47] Mike Levine: Yeah, depending on what size filter you have, what the makeup is of the filter. A lot of people buy the cheap ones from Walmart, which basically looks like a green mat. Those don't pull out as much stuff from the air as possible. Yep. I highly recommend trying to find a nice quality cotton style filter because it has a little bit more surface area, the pickup, all these pathogens and viruses and things like that from the winter.

[00:06:13] So then that way you're not breathing it in. And in the springtime it collects pollen. And as we're getting in all the trees going into pollen and people are having allergy problems and things like that, sinus infections. Just changing your filter can increase your likelihood of not coming down with something.

[00:06:33] Alice Lema: That's crazy, cause you know, we, we just think of filters is as not really that important, but you're speaking volumes here about people's house, especially, you know, trying to come out of COVID.

[00:06:45] Mike Levine: And like I said, it's not just about the health too. It's also about the health of your system, because if you are running a system with a dirty filter, Your fan motors and everything inside, they control the airflow are working harder and it's putting a lot of stress on them.

[00:07:00] It's like everything else. It's like changing the oil in your car. Not nobody likes doing it, but it has to be done in order to maintain the vehicle. Otherwise you're not going to go anywhere. If I don't breathe, I don't work. And it's the same thing with your system.

[00:07:14] Alice Lema: So those are good words. If the system isn't breathing, neither are you. Exactly. So that's really interesting because we don't think of an HPAC unit as being particularly vulnerable or you know, even the possibility of being weakened. So can you speak a little bit more technically about what happens to the fan if the filters get clogged up and exactly what happens.

[00:07:41] Mike Levine: Oh, sure thing. So basically if you're running an old, old school system with an air handler and heat pump, air handlers, the system in your attic that draws the air in through your return, pushes it over your coils to heat or cool it, depending on if it's a heat pump or a gas furnace, but operates the same way and all that particular and dust and everything will build up on your fan motors and your blower motor, your inducer motors, all that stuff, it just moving parts.

[00:08:10] So as all this stuff's building up on there, it's creating resistance and creating friction. Friction creates heat. Heat is not good for electrical components, especially when you're trying them, make sure they work and you need them to work. So as that's work, as that's building up on there, it's just basically like walking around with muddy shoes in the spring. You just wind up building a cake on the bottom of your shoe and you start dragging your feet, your family will do the exact same thing.

[00:08:42] And then if you have someone like me, come in and clean your system, the fan motors will be working for so long with that much resistance, that once they get clean and they get back up that operating speed, sometimes they'll short out because they've been running restricted so long.

[00:08:58] Gotcha. And it's just the little things like that, that a lot of people don't consider like animals outside on the, on the, the heat pumps and the air conditioning outside. I mean, there's a lot of factors that could come into play that just will choke down your system.

[00:09:15] Alice Lema: So let's talk about the the exterior part.

[00:09:18] When you say animals being hurting or somehow incapacitating the system, what do you mean exactly?

[00:09:25] Mike Levine: And animals they like the mark, their territory. I've got a couple of dogs. I got a bunch of animals like rabbits and stuff like that, that wander around my property. You know, they'll come up and they'll drink the condensation water that's leaking out from your system and they'll wind up nesting around it especially if there's high grass, they'll build a little bit of a lifestyle around there. Or just your dogs, you know, your dogs like the mark, their territory. So they'll come up to your heat pump or your AC unit outside. I know they'll urinate on it.

[00:09:59] And that urine will actually decompose the aluminum on your outdoor unit. And it will not do a heat exchange. Yep.

[00:10:07] Alice Lema: Oh my gosh, because dogs do that all the time and those people's units are not particularly fenced or have a barrier.

[00:10:17] Mike Levine: No, I wrote about putting a little fence or something to put around your unit there. Maintaining the weeds around it. Keep the animals away from it because the ammonia that's contained in the urine is not good for aluminum. And it will just disintegrate it over time. If that happens, you're not going to have a heat exchange. You're not going to have cool air inside and you're going to call me going, what's going on?

[00:10:41] Alice Lema: Well, and I'm sorry for laughing, but it's, this is why we want to have you on the shows as we learned something and. Yeah. So not to be gross folks, but it's, it's hurting your unit outside. So keep your pet, so how do people keep their pets away and I'll stop laughing.

[00:10:57] Mike Levine: Oh, all right. I had to tell a lot of these systems where I go out there and I just find the bottom part of their condenser unit outside is just completely rotten. And easiest thing you can do, go to the Walmart or you can do it yourself. Just build a little fence, taking out a space, probably three feet, three, four feet away from your unit and just fence it off, you know, keep them from raising their legs against saying the metal. You're establishing that this is your property, not the animals. Just keep them away from it.

[00:11:31] Alice Lema: Okay. Folks, you heard it here first. Don't let your dogs pee on your outdoor. What do you call that unit? Is it a condenser heat exchanger?

[00:11:41] Mike Levine: It depends on what's in there. It could be, it's whatever it is.

[00:11:44] Alice Lema: Don't let people pee on it. Condenser or call the heat pump.

[00:11:49] Mike Levine: And yeah, just keep them away from it. It will make your system last longer and it'll keep you cool in the summertime.

[00:11:54] Alice Lema: Yeah. Okay. So, gosh, I don't know even where to start. So on the outside, we've got some of the problems are animals and you were talking about tall grass and then critters, nesting. What happens to the unit with tall grass? Especially if you've got, I imagine you could get mice in there too.

[00:12:15] Mike Levine: Mice tend to stay away from it because there's a lot of moving components. You know, you've got your blower motor in there. You got your compressor in there. And what happens is when you have high grasses around your, your outdoor unit is it's drawing air in from the surrounding area.

[00:12:33] And it's trying to pump it up through the top. So as it's trying to do this, it's exchanging heat. It's basically taking the heat from inside and pushing it outside expelling it. If you have high grasses around it, it will suck against the coil restrict the airflow of your, of the fan motor. You're trying to draw that air in and it will not work well. It won't exchange the heat and you will not get AC in this spring, spring and summer.

[00:13:02] Alice Lema: So I bet a lot of people don't know that. So when you mow around there if the pieces of grass and plant material goes into the unit, is that a problem as well?

[00:13:15] Mike Levine: Usually the, the aluminum and the guards on there catch a bunch of it and filter it out. And there's a really simple steps to maintain it. You could just take a garden hose and just sprayed down. No, if it builds up on there, say the unit's running and you're mowing your grass. Oh, excuse me. And it just kind of blows onto your unit. Don't be afraid to just whip out of a garden hose and spray that grass off.

[00:13:37] Alice Lema: So keep your unit clean. That's very good advice. Yes. So, well, you're going to be one of our favorite guests. I can tell.

[00:13:46] Mike Levine: My, oh, I, I, I'm looking forward to this. I just love talking to people like, exchanging information and ideas and the more we all know the better off we will all be.

[00:13:57] Alice Lema: Well. And that's one of the great things about calculated comfort, heat and air just in general, you guys are all very deep in the knowledge and having that extreme technical capability helps explain to homeowners why it's important you know, dealing with furnaces and air conditioners all the time. It's just amazing what people don't know. They buy their house and then they don't do anything.

[00:14:19] Right, right. And a lot of them don't keep records. So for the going back to the exterior unit and then we'll jump back to the inside of the house on the exterior. You've talked about keeping animals away, keeping plant materials away and washing, is there any other maintenance kind of thing you should do for the outside?

[00:14:40] Mike Levine: There is there's a few little things you can check to just make sure your system working and operating well, most ACS and condenser units they'll have a little access panel. They'll take either a quarter inch or a five 16 inch hex head.

[00:14:59] And all you do is you just unscrew the panel and take a look inside. You will have a little circuit board with flashing led lights. If it doesn't most of them, if it doesn't have a steady flash, you have an error in your system. And then there's a little cell on there on the inside call a capacitor don't touch that, just look at it.

[00:15:20] It contains 200 volts and it will shock you. But if it's, if it's blowing up like a pop can, that's been rolling around someone's car for too long and the sides are swelling, That actually relays all the power to your system and that's worn out. And then one of the things that mainly goes bad in every system.

[00:15:39] Alice Lema: Maybe we'll, we'll talk about having you guys do that. That sounds a little precarious stuff, homeowners doing, but but good advice to know about that panel. We've got to take a quick break. We're talking to Mike Levine, the maintenance manager at calculated comfort heating and air. We'll be right back with a quick word from our sponsors. Do not go away.

[00:15:57] Well, hi everybody. Welcome back to the real estate show again. Alice Lema here, your host broker, John L. Scott in Southern Oregon. And we're talking to Mike Levine, the maintenance manager, calculated comfort, heating and air, and a what an interesting educational interview we are having so far. So much depth and specifics about taking care of your heating and air system.

[00:16:21] So right before the break, we were talking about how on the outside unit homeowners can actually remove the panel themselves to kind of see what's going on, but you had some warnings about doing that. So let's revisit that warning about taking the panel off, just so everybody hears it again.

[00:16:38] Mike Levine: Okay. So when you take, you take off the access panel usually you can get in there, no problems, no issues whatsoever. It does contain 110 or 240 volts, depending on how big your system is. And you're able to get in there and take a look at the circuit board. Most circuit boards in the system have an led light. They'll tell you a code. We have a set of codes that we're able to come in and diagnose an issue with, but a lot of things more often than not, it's just a capacitor, the capacitor draws in the power and the to the various parts of, well, your heat pump and condenser. And as it's doing that, it operates your fan motor, operates, the compressor inside that pumps, your Freon does all that stuff. But that is usually about 200 volts, it acts like a giant battery inside your unit. Even when you pull a disconnect, it's still has power to it.

[00:17:33] So if you take, take the panel off, do not touch that, just look at it. And if it has oil around the top or if it's bulging in any way, that has to be replaced because that basically controls everything in that little system.

[00:17:47] Alice Lema: So would a homeowner have symptoms if that was the case? How would they know to go look at that? Or are you just saying to go check that every so often? Regardless?

[00:18:00] Mike Levine: I don't recommend checking it every so often, but if let's just say the fan on your outdoor units, not working, that'd be one of the first things I would check. Okay. Just take a look and see if that little a steel cylinder is enlarged, or it's basically just worn out.

[00:18:17] You'll notice that by having oil across the top or a bulge on the side.

[00:18:20] Alice Lema: Oh, I see. Okay so if the fan motors not, not blowing that'd be the first thing that you could check real fast and the homeowners could do that themselves. You know, just pop it off, take a look at it. And if it doesn't look like a nice, nice cylinder, it's probably bad.

[00:18:36] So how much lifespan do those cylinders have?

[00:18:39] Mike Levine: Depends on the make and the model. They usually go out probably once every 10 years on average, just because, you know, During the summertime we get up above triple digits and the system is working harder and running constantly. And during that, it's transitioning that power relaying that power constantly throughout the entire day. And it's not getting a break. So with the hotter temperatures, yeah, they can wear out a little bit faster.

[00:19:07] Alice Lema: So every 10 years, that's a pretty long time.

[00:19:10] Mike Levine: Well, mostly, most HVA systems lasts about 25 to 30 years. So you got a system about 20, 20 to 25 years start considering that you might have to have it replaced soon because that's about the average lifespan.

[00:19:22] Alice Lema: So let's talk about servicing, cause that is also something that comes up in real estate. A lot of buyers will ask for the unit to be serviced or sometimes homeowners before they put it on the market. We'll have you come out? What does a service entail?

[00:19:42] Mike Levine: That was that, that is my department and I am the maintenance manager, maintenance manager, Mike, you can call me.. Well, the service would entail someone like me coming in, checking your, your return, seeing if, how dirty it is, how dirty your filters are before we even go up in the attic to get a nice, nice guess what we're walking into.

[00:20:04] And then as we go up and check on your air handler, we would check all your firing components, your start motors, your amperage, your ratings of the capacitors use, I think called microfarad. So you need a special tool to test for that. And luckily we have as we're cleaning the system, we would come in clean your coils because they do build up, especially with dirty filters, they build up a lot of dust, bunnies and stuff that will just freeze to it. We'll clean all that off. We'll clean the blower motors off. And if you have a gas furnace up there, we would also come in and check your inducer motor, which pumps all the exhaust up thru the roof.

[00:20:43] And then we would also check your burning assembly, which basically, just like a cooktop, you know propane cooktop and we would just double-check and make sure the ports are clean. See how well it's firing check, check the flow of the fire to also adjust a little bit. Cause sometimes there's a spring that will wear out and you'd have to tighten it down, otherwise it would pump out more propane or natural gas and you get a bigger flame, which would wind up basically cracking your your heat exchanger. And your heat exchangers what holds the heat in while the air flow is coming across the top and warming up and then blowing into your house.

[00:21:23] Alice Lema: Oh, that sounds bad.

[00:21:24] Mike Levine: Oh, we had an incident once where we were checking on the heat exchanger and well, a flame came out with the fresh air intake. Almost burnt off my eyebrows.

[00:21:34] Alice Lema: Oh my gosh. Hazard hazard. Yep. So what do you do in that circumstance?

[00:21:41] Mike Levine: Well, in that case, I don't want to scare people, but in that kind of instance, the, the system would have to be replaced. We would have to throw in either a new heat exchanger, which is kind of crazy because trying to get materials these days, everybody knows so difficult. More often that we would have to order the part and then probably wait two to three weeks just to get it in. And then we can come in and swap it out. If not, then we'd have to replace your entire unit.

[00:22:07] Alice Lema: So, you know, I didn't even think of that, but with the supply chain problems we're having, it might be ever more important that people get a maintenance maintenance look, see right now, even if their system is seeming fine.

[00:22:22] Mike Levine: Yep. I recommend twice a year, once in the springtime and once a year.

[00:22:27] Yep. So right about now, right about now, have somebody like me, come on in, check your system, make sure everything's all up, up to par up to snuff. And that way, whenever you do get really, really warm and you want to turn on the air conditioning. Yeah. And then in the wintertime, you get cold. You're able to turn that into heat and you're not going to have the issues that a lot of people have, or they call and say, oh, it's not working and I don't know why, I need someone here today.

[00:22:53] Alice Lema: Right. Because I'm melting. Yeah. And that's one of my my soap boxes is let's avoid the emergencies when it's possible to avoid an emergency. So This time of year right now is it's not so hot. We should not be using our AC yet, but we're gonna pretty soon. So having you come out and take a look at everything. Yeah. That might be great. Especially if you need to have parts ordered, you've got some time.

[00:23:21] Mike Levine: Yeah. So you have a couple, couple of weeks, you know, before the temperature shoots up and that would give us time to research, research the make and model model of whatever system you're using.

[00:23:31] Get the appropriate part, diagnose the issue properly. And then we can come back in, slam it out, get it running and keep my customers happy. And that was my main goal customers happy.

[00:23:44] Alice Lema: Yup. Keep the customers happy. Emergency avoided. So I'm the maintenance twice a year, I bet a lot of people don't know that.

[00:23:52] Mike Levine: Not really. I I've been, since I've taken over this position, I've been talking to a lot of our customers. They have a once a year program and with especially with the smoke in the summertime, definitely need a maintenance in the winter before you swap it over because smoke contains oil oil. Yeah. It contains a very finite amount of oil in it, and it will burn after it builds up over so many years. So if you've got somebody that's never cleaned their system and it's been 20 years, you could actually go in there and almost wipe this in the oil with your finger, want to be breathing that right?

[00:24:33] Alice Lema: Wow. Wow. Yeah. It's your lungs people. Yeah.

[00:24:38] Mike Levine: So I really recommend the twice a year service. So that way your system's not choking itself down in the summer. And you get a nice, healthy, clean after the smoke season blows away.

[00:24:48] Alice Lema: Yeah. And that's going into cold and flu season. Well, our normal cold and flu season and normal call that. Are we ever going to see that again? Okay, so that sounds awesome. I want to go back to filters because you mentioned there were different grades of filters. So we do have people that are asmatic or they have really severe ongoing breathing difficulties. Are there special filters for people like that?

[00:25:15] Mike Levine: Yes. There, there are special filters. They do require a little bit more money. During smoke season. I, I recommend people get a carbon filter in their system because the carbon filters will actually pull out the smoke and Ash and all that stuff a little bit better.

[00:25:30] Alice Lema: Oh, wow. That's a great idea.

[00:25:32] Mike Levine: Yep. And then it also kind of sterilizes the air. It's basically like filtering water through charcoal and you're doing the same process with your air system. You're filtering your air system, using a charcoal filter, which picks up more of that finer matter, that very small particles. And then they have other stuff called MERV (rating system). You have 8, 12, 14, and all these, and those are for people with severe health issues.

[00:25:59] They're used in hospitals and hospice care houses and all that. So depending on your scenario and your lifestyle, You should research in the filters a little bit more, cause you might not be using the right one.

[00:26:12] Alice Lema: Yeah. Yeah. I think that's excellent advice. So if we're doing two services a year, one in the spring and one in the fall, then would the carbon filter be put in the spring?

[00:26:25] Mike Levine: It'd be put in, in the springtime for, like I said, I recommend people change their filters a minimum of once every three months. I do mine. I do mine every time I paid my electric bill, which is once a month. Which is a good reminder. It's a good reminder. So that way, when I pay my bill, it's also time to change my filter and I just swap them out.

[00:26:47] I don't have the worry about the system or have to worry about you're on a monthly cycle.

[00:26:52] Alice Lema: That's great. So let's talk a little bit when the couple of minutes we have left in this segment if somebody is busy or they're not physically capable of doing these things themselves, I remember you telling me that you have almost like a subscription service of some kind of maintenance work.

[00:27:13] Mike Levine: We can provide the maintenance program through our, our company here, which is my department. And depending on what system you're running our rates will vary. Vary because if you have a mini split system, which is the ductless ones, they're hung up on the wall, those are going to be a little bit cheaper, cause they're easier to clean. And I don't have to go through and crack open your air handler and get into all those components. Everything is right there. So let's just say, if you want a once a year service, probably be about $169 to just have me come in and do a full once a year service. Twice a year I can a little bit more of a discount because I know you're maintaining your system and you're having me come in twice.

[00:27:57] Just do a full workup of everything and I'll even leave you a couple extra filters too behind. So you guys change it every three months in between my visits.

[00:28:05] Alice Lema: That is a great idea. Yeah, so I think the automated subscription will you call it a maintanace agreement. Yeah, I think that is brilliant. So we're going to have to take a quick break. We're talking to Mike Levine, the maintenance manager of calculated comfort heating and air company learning tons and tons, very, very deep technical knowledge, you have there Mike. That's great. Yeah, people need to hear that. And they need to know how to take care of their systems, especially, you know, now we're going into summer, so don't go away folks.

[00:28:35] We're going to be back in just a quick minute. We're brought to you by John L. Scott, Ashland and Medford, Guy Giles mutual of Omaha mortgage and our local Rogue Valley association realtors.

[00:28:47] Well, good morning again, everybody. And welcome back to the real estate show. I am Alice Lema, your host of the show, and I'm a broker here in beautiful Southern Oregon with John L. Scott real estate. And we're having a really great interview with Mike Levine, who is the maintenance manager of calculated comfort heating and air maintenance. Mike, that is his nickname. So during the break we were kind of talking a little bit about different types of systems and the mini-split is becoming really, really popular. And I don't know that a lot of people know what a mini-split is, but let's talk about what it is and why it's why it's becoming more common in people's homes.

[00:29:23] Mike Levine: A many splits system is basically, it's one of those systems you see that's up on a wall towards the ceiling, and all it does is that your entire AC and heating head, you'll still have an outdoor condenser unit, like the rest of the AC systems, because you do need to have a heat exchange.

[00:29:41] But these things are really good for small homes, tiny homes, or even if you want to do like a zone control. So one side of your house stays warmer. Well, another side stays cooler, you know, you might be taking care of somebody elderly that likes it warmer. And you like it about 72. Yeah. Especially with all these families that are sharing homes. Now kids aren't leaving as much parents are getting older and all these ductless systems or mini splits, just a really easy way for people to maintain AC and heat within their home. They're really not that expensive. They're pretty efficient. And they will save a little bit more on your electric bill then air handler system.

[00:30:24] Yep. So that way you're not, you're not putting out more cubic feet of volume. You're actually just heating and cooling that specific room or that specific space. And they're really cool. I like working on them. They're easy to maintain you. Homeowners could actually clean and change the filters themselves. So that's another good point of them.

[00:30:47] They could just go up, get the step ladder, open up the cover case, pull out the two wheel filters they're in there, wash them out. Cause they are washable filters and that's another good point of those things is you don't have to buy filters for them. But then again, they don't, they're not meant for bigger houses, larger square footage.

[00:31:09] And if you try to put a couple of them in there, and you're trying to cover a huge space with a lot of lights, it's not going to work as well. So better for smaller spaces. Yeah. Like living rooms, gathering rooms, things like that. Or tiny homes, for example, I've installed a couple of, in a few tiny homes and the homeowners love them.

[00:31:31] Alice Lema: Well, on that idea, you were talking about multi-generations living together. If they have a mother-in-law cottage or something, it sounds like that would be perfect then. Then they can have it at 90 degrees.

[00:31:42] Mike Levine: I always thought, I always tell my mother just put on another shirt. Yeah. Yeah. I don't know. It doesn't work like that though. We joke about it, but I bet we're like that when we get old too.

[00:31:57] Alice Lema: Yeah. Yeah. So let's see. So the mini-split is also called the ductless and it's called ductless because?

[00:32:06] Mike Levine: Because you don't have any duct work running through your house. With most air handler systems, you have to have duct work that runs into a supply, which has those little registers you see throughout your house. I put up the heating or, or the cooling. For the ductless system. It just goes up on a wall. So you don't have any duct work. It's got a blower motor and all that fun stuff, the coil and all that's inside of it. And it's all self-contained. So you don't have to pay somebody to come in and run 80, 90 feet worth of duct work.

[00:32:36] If you just put this on your wall, we could run what's called a line set that basically contains your Freon right through your wall, and then done. There's no hacking in the drywall. There's no cutting in the wood. It just, good to go.

[00:32:52] Alice Lema: So it's really interesting because even some of the builders are putting those systems in instead of the central heat and air duct work. I was really surprised to see that. But the people that were buying the houses for the most part, were good with it. We did have a couple people just really object to the, they call it the thing hanging off the wall. But yeah, but it sounds like if your electricity bill is going to be less, that's, that's a good fit all the way around.

[00:33:23] Mike Levine: Yeah. Because your, your bill will be a little bit less because you're not sitting there trying to maintain a constant temperature throughout your whole house. It's only going to be reading from about that room. And a lot of people are modifying their houses these days. They're getting rid of their garages and turning them into like extra bedrooms or a den or man-cave.

[00:33:44] You can't really get in there to do duct work. Cause all the duct work is already pre-established. The easiest way to do it is just get one of those mini splits with a head on the wall. We'll install it and we'll just pop it right up there and be out within a couple hours.

[00:33:59] Alice Lema: Well, and you know, with both mother's day and father's day coming up, I just had this idea what a great gift for somebody to give a one of their family members is a mini split in their garage.

[00:34:12] Mike Levine: Oh, yeah. Yeah.

[00:34:13] Alice Lema: Wouldn't that be so downtown. So if that's a good idea, then you can call maintenance Mike or somebody at calculated comfort. Yeah. Yeah. Maybe we'll have maybe a father's day mother's day special. Maybe you should talk to the boss.

[00:34:29] Mike Levine: That's a good idea becausewe are turning these garages, like I said, in the party rooms, or even they're just keeping the doors closed and working on it, like a mechanics garage, working on dirt bikes and all that. And these systems are really easy way to keep you comfortable while you're doing your thing.

[00:34:45] Alice Lema: Yeah, but just to caution folks, if you do that, you will see them less. Don't know if that's a plus or minus in your house. So maybe in addition to the mini-split, you should put a phone in her car.

[00:35:02] Mike Levine: That would work and Intercom system. I like it.

[00:35:05] Alice Lema: Sorry, we're just having some fun here. So. All right. Well, getting back to you some, some more serious I want to go back to ductwork. Most people, that's what they have in their house. And we haven't had a chance to talk too much about. Is there anything people should do or not do to maintain their actual ducting system?

[00:35:24] Mike Levine: Yeah. Periodically you should walk around your house, looking at your supply, where the airflow is coming in. Vents and if you're looking at that pay attention for insulation, if you see insulation hanging off of your vents, chances are you have rodent damage and you're losing a lot of your airflow and a lot of your cooling all the time.

[00:35:49] Alice Lema: I never thought of that.

[00:35:51] Mike Levine: Yep. That's a good way that helps, like help diagnose that. And if you see that you should call somebody like me to come in and do a duct inspection where we would do a walkthrough of all your duct work, you get in there and crawl around and we'd see what kind of rodent damage there are, because they'll chew thru to your duct work. Cause a lot of it's flexed stuff, not hard duct work. It's basically like a giant accordion and they'll get inside there to chew the installation and use them like a highway to go get across your house. So if you see insullation, chances are you probably have a rodent up there causing some damage and you're losing a lot of your cooling into your attic and the summer.

[00:36:27] Alice Lema: Okay. So what is the remedy for that? What do you guys actually do? And we only have a few seconds left, sorry.

[00:36:34] Mike Levine: Oh, that's okay. It's okay. Chances are, we would get up there and if the damage is too extensive, we would have to replace that line of duct work. But if not, then we would, we would actually so diagnose the holes and repair them onsite.

[00:36:47] Alice Lema: Okay. Okay. Well, those are good tips. If you see a insulation in your vents, you probably have a rodent problem. I bet a lot of us didn't know that. Well maintenance, Mike, Mike Levine, the maintenance manager calculated comfort, heating and air. I want to say thank you so much for this fabulous interview.

[00:37:06] Where can people get ahold of you if they need some help?

[00:37:09] Mike Levine: Oh, you can get ahold of me here at calculated comfort right off the Table rock road in central point. Or you can call our, call our shop here. The phone number is (541) 690-8391.

[00:37:22] Alice Lema: Perfect. Thanks Mike. We got to run. We'll have you back have a beautiful weekend, everybody. Bye now.

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