HVAC HELP

Handy information to keep your HVAC unit in good working order.

Tip Sheets

Troubleshooting HVAC Problems (PDF, 240 K)

Maintenance Instructions: Strainer Cleaning (PDF, 591 K)

Routine Maintenance Guide

Be sure to change your HVAC filter and strainer every three months. Click on the link below for instruction on changing your strainers.

Video: How to Clean Your HVAC Strainer

Do you know where your domestic (sink, shower toilets) water shutoff valve is location? The valves are marked on the grid of the ceiling tiles on floors 3-16

Units ABCD – located above the ceiling tile in the hallway above the A unit’s door.

Units EFGH – located above the ceiling tile in the hallway above the H unit’s door.

Note: These water shut-offs are for domestic water such as the unit’s kitchen and bathroom water service. They do not shut off the water to the HVAC. Shut offs for the HVAC system are located in the ceiling in common area of each floor. There is a sign hanging from the tile grids pinpointing the position. A ladder will be needed to reach up and remove the ceiling tile to reach the two shut off lever to the HVAC water supply.

Helpful Hints

Here are some helpful hints to navigate HVAC problems:

  1. Assuming you called an HVAC technician, first, make sure they check the air conditioning (A\C) and confirm that the gauges are on and the unit is running on cool. Assuming that the gauges work, this tell you everything you need to know, provided the compressor starts. If the compressor does not start, there are other issues. Realize that the assumption is the unit will start and the compressor will run and not trip out.
  2. If the compressor runs and does not trip out, check both supply and return lines. There should be a substantial difference in temperature. The return line should get warmer as should the supply line. If not, or if there is very little difference, the unit is low on refrigerant, probably from the valve connection to the test gauges. If the unit trips out in cooling, then the problem could be in the condenser or the reversing valve (that’s what makes it a heat pump). This does not mean there is nothing wrong with the compressor or other internal parts. Again the technician needs to test the gauges.
  3. The regulator on the return line does exactly that, control the water through the condenser to control the head pressure. Each unit is built, designed and shipped with its own hose kit, which includes a regulator and strainer, but there are after market controls available.
  4. Removing the regulator would cause an imbalance on the unit in both heating and cooling. However, there are head pressure controls on the market that do the same thing, but they connect not only on the water side but also on the refrigerant side.