APS and SRP Cool Cash AC Rebates

May 17th, 2018

Before we Talk APS and SRP AC Rebates, Let’s Talk Utility Rate Plans

srp-cool-cash-rebateI have good news and bad news regarding utility rebates for SRP and APS customers who purchase a new central air conditioning and heating system. The good news is for anyone who is an SRP Customer, and the bad news is for anyone who is an APS customer.

I’m not trying to “poke the bear” when I say I’m very glad I’m personally an SRP customer because I really do feel bad for anyone in APS territory.

If you aren’t yet aware, APS recently enacted fairly significant rate increases and we have spoken to many clients that are having trouble trying to figure out the confusing new rate plans, some of which have extremely high surcharges.

Choosing the wrong plan, or not adapting your lifestyle to avoid high surcharges could lead some homeowners and business owners in APS territory to receive unexpected high bills, especially this summer during air conditioning season.

Note 1: I’ll publish an article in the near future that helps explain each plan in more detail, but for now it’s important to understand that you will be penalized if your demand is too high all at one time. EX. Your electric dryer, AC, and oven (for example) are all on at the same time – especially during the “new” peak demand hours. It’s best to “stagger” the usage of each with the new plans.

Note 2: If advised to “supercool” your home by APS (or anyone else for that matter), be sure yourhome and air conditioning system are right first. You can accomplish this by having a home energy audit conducted. If not, you might get a whopper of a power bill at the end of the month.

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Is Trane AC Worth the Extra Money?

May 14th, 2018

An Unbiased Review from a Contractor Who Sells Many Air Conditioner Brands, Not Just Trane

 

trane-air-conditioners-phoenix-azBefore I go any further, for those who’ve never read my blog articles before…

I’ve owned an air conditioning company in Mesa, AZ – Magic Touch Mechanical, for over twenty years. We sell a lot of Trane air conditioners, furnaces, and heat pump units. However, we also sell a lot of Lennox, Goodman, Mitsubishi, Day & Night (a Carrier brand), First Company, the occasional Fujitsu, and then some as well. In other words, this is an HVAC contractor’s opinion, not a Trane Dealer’s opinion.

We “sell” Magic Touch Mechanical and the service we deliver, not Trane, Lennox, Goodman, etc. We choose to sell the brands, more specifically models, that we feel offer the best value, reliability, and performance.

The reason we choose to offer our customers multiple brands is we believe in providing multiple options, not ultimatums. Bluntly said, I feel that any company that only offers their client one or two brands to choose from is offering what they want to sell, not always what’s best for the customer.

That said, there are brands, and even particular models from brands we do sell, that we flat out will not recommend…those that we have found to have a particularly high failure rate. Years ago, we stopped selling brands like Rheem and Maytag for this very reason. I realize there will be contractors that sell one or both of these brands that read this and disagree, however I base that on our experience with the brands.
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Lennox iComfort E30 Thermostat Review

May 10th, 2018

A Look Inside the Lennox E30 Smart Thermostat and Professional Review

 

lennox-icomfort-reviewLennox International is one of the three “premium” brand air conditioning and heating equipment manufacturers in the U.S.

Like the other two, Trane and Carrier; they manufacturer base and mid-tier AC units just like all the other major brands. Unlike the others, they are one of “the big three” constantly trying to “one up” each other with best in classequipment and accessories. Thermostats being one of those accessories – one the manufacturers used to leave to others to build which they are now making themselves.

 

When I founded my AC Company here in Mesa, AZ., Magic Touch Mechanical, twenty years ago, there were three big players making thermostats; Robert Shaw, White Rodgers, and Honeywell. As is still often the case today, we recommended and installed Honeywell Thermostats over the last two decades mostly. They’ve proven reliable and offer a wide range of options from basic to extremely advanced.

 

Welcome Nexia, Nest, Sensi, and Other AC Thermostats

 

In recent years however, we’ve seen many newer companies entering the thermostat game including Nexia, Nest, and Emerson’s Sensi thermostat (to name a few). Each of them all busy one upping the next with the latest in Wi-Fi, Geo-Fencing, Weather Reporting, Humidity Control, Alexa Compatibility, even the ability to display high-definition photos – picture your thermostat as one of the family photo’s hanging in the hallway. Likewise, each of them making some pretty great products in my opinion.

 

We’ve installed hundreds of each at this point so I can attest to the positive customer reviews people give them all. In fact, I giggle when I read some of the reviews because people always write what makes the brand they chose, better than the others – kind of like the Mac vs. PC, and iPhone vs. Android effect, there are some “proud owners” of each!

 

For what it’s worth, I personally have mostly Nest thermostats on my properties. Not necessarily because I think Nest thermostats are better than the others – each have things they do better than the others, so choosing yoursdepends on which features best suit yourlifestyle.  If you’re interested in reading my Nest Thermostat review click here

 

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Should I Buy a Cheap New AC Unit?

May 6th, 2018

Did You Get a Great Deal on a New AC Unit or Did You Get Had?

 

The Cost of the Lowest Price New AC Unit Installation

 

cheap-new-ac-unit-costPhoenix, AZ where my company Magic Touch Mechanical is located (technically Mesa, AZ) is now the 5thlargest city in the country. It is also one of the largest markets in the US for residential air conditioning and heating equipment shipments per the major manufacturers.

 

There are approximately 2,000 licensed air conditioning companies in this market, and oodles more moonlighters, side-show Bob’s, and other unlicensed companies installing new AC units in this market.

For the purposes of this article, I’m going to focus on choosing the right licensed AC company to install your new AC.

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Home Air Conditioner Lemon Laws

April 13th, 2018

Central Air Conditioner Lemon Law and Warranty Information

 

ac-lemon-law-azIf you’re reading this article, more than likely you are experiencing trouble with your new or newer home AC or heating system and wondering if you have a lemon. You are probably also wanting to know about air conditioner “lemon laws” and if you have any recourse for a troubled AC unit that is completely or partially out of warranty.

 

Or, you may be shopping for a new central HVAC system and are wondering if you should spend the additional money to purchase an extended labor warranty. Either way, this article should answer your questions.

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Buying a New AC Unit–Check Licenses

April 9th, 2018

Are You Buying a New AC Unit? – Check Their Contractors License, You Need to Look Deeper Than You Thought You Did!

 

licensed_ac_contractor_mesa_azI’ve owned Magic Touch Mechanical in Mesa, AZ for over twenty-years, since I founded the company in 1997. I am the Qualifying Partyfor all three of the Arizona contractor’s licenses Magic Touch operates under and have been since the beginning. In other words, the buck stops with me personally when it comes to everyone in the company’s workmanship and contracts.

 

What most homeowners don’t realize is that the Qualifying Party for a contractor’s license in AZ not only may notbe the owner of the company, they can actually be any employee of the company.

 

This loophole means; not only is it perfectly legal for company owners, managers, and shareholders, to have absolutely no experience in the trade, they are not even the ultimate responsible party for the workmanship the company puts out.

 

The reason I call this rule a loophole is, this has led to companies “renting” someone else’s contracting license. The qualifying party (who does not even need to be a full-time employee) can leave the company (or be terminated) at any time. The company is then given a grace period before needing to go rent another qualifying party.

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Magic Touch Now Mitsubishi Preferred

April 3rd, 2018

Mitsubishi Ductless Names Magic Touch Mechanical a Preferred Diamond Contractor

 

mitsubishi_ductless_install_azMitsubishi has long been the top selling ductless air conditioning brand in the USA, for the same reasons we recommend their AC & Heat Pump Systems. They are dependable, efficient, quiet, and offer unmatched performance.

 

Magic Touch Mechanical earned “Mitsubishi Diamond Contractor” status years ago by immersing our employees in factory certified training and getting excellent ratings from Mitsubishi owners whose equipment we installed and/or service. As a Diamond Contractor, we give customers 5-years longer factory warranty on all parts, for a full 12-Years warranty, vs. only 7-years standard factory warranty (when purchased from a non-diamond contractor).

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Lennox PureAir Air Purifier Review

April 2nd, 2018

An In-depth Look at Lennox’s Multi-Duty Electronic Air Cleaner

 

lennox PureAir review mesa azLast year, the Magic Touch Mechanical blog was awarded as one of the top 15 HVAC blogs in the country by another popular blogger in the air conditioning and heating industry. I was honored as I only found out when the writer sent me a copy of his article telling me ours was one of the chosen.

 

I’m delighted that our blog is such a popular resource for consumers looking for unbiased information about air conditioning, heating, indoor air quality, and home energy savings in general. I actually get most of my topics, including today’s, from questions people ask us so if there’s something you want to know more about after searching our blog, send me a message so I can add it to my list – if you’re wondering, more than likely so are many others.

 

Today’s article reviewing the Lennox Pure Air Electronic Air Cleaner is thanks to a Colorado homeowner that couldn’t find much information about it anywhere else.

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Nest Thermostat Review by a User

March 26th, 2018

Nest Thermostat Review

 

nest thermostat user reviewFull disclosure upfront; if this is the first time you are reading my blog, I own an air conditioning & heating company in Mesa, AZ – Magic Touch Mechanical. My company sells and installs a lot of Nest thermostats and has for years, but we also install hundreds of Honeywell, Ecobee, Lennox, and Trane thermostats as well so there is no bias in my review.

 

This Nest thermostat review is based on my own personal use of the Nest thermostat, and I own four of them total on different properties in the Phoenix area. I also have two Nest thermostats in my office.

 

While the Nest is not as feature-rich as some of its rivals, and not as fancy as say the Lennox i-Comfort E-30 thermostat, it does stand out from the crowd because of some of its differences. The most apparent difference is its simple, yet somehow still high-tech appearance – it’s just a good-looking device!

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New AC Unit Rebates Spring 2018

March 23rd, 2018

Should I Wait for Manufacturer Rebates to Buy a New AC Unit?

I’ve seen this question pop up several times in a Facebook Group I’m a member of so thought it would be good to share some industry insider secrets about the factory rebates manufacturers offer every year before the start of summer.

trane-ac-rebate_lennox rebate

 

New AC Unit Factory Rebates from Lennox and Trane Every Spring

Air conditioning companies in Phoenix and HVAC equipment manufacturers alike consider early February through mid to late April, the “slow season” for new AC unit installations. This is the time of year when companies like Magic Touch Mechanical are focused on scheduling our pre-season air conditioner tune-ups and maintenance visits to make sure our maintenance agreement clients AC’s are ready for the long summer ahead. Our installation crews are only installing new equipment for the “planners” this time of year, because the majority of our installs are “emergency” installs for units that break down in the heat of summer.

Many of the major equipment manufacturers offer factory rebates and special financing options each spring to encourage people who were considering installing a new AC unit or replacing an existing AC unit to do it in the spring and take advantage of the extra incentives. They are hoping more people will plan their replacement instead of waiting until it is an emergency and incentivize them with something everyone likes…cash!

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