Olive, How Is a Heat Pump Getting Heat Outside in Winter?

Monday, March 25th, 2019

graduate-oliveI love it when I get to put on my “Professor Olive” cap and discuss HVAC science. Now don’t worry—I’m not going to test you on this. And the science I’m going to talk about isn’t too tough. It’s just a bit tricky to approach at first because people aren’t used to hearing about “getting heat out of the cold.”

Okay, let’s jump into the question:

“How can a heat pump move heat into a home during a cold winter day?”

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Is a Heater With More Capacity Better?

Monday, February 25th, 2019

happy-family-with-dogI understand why the good folks out there looking for the best heating might think a bigger heater means better heating. I often think a bigger chew toy might be more fun, but then I find out I can’t drag around a plastic bone three times larger than my head! Getting a heater that’s got more capacity than your home needs can stick you with some serious problems. I’ll go over these with you below.

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Olive Reflects on Valentines from Customers

Monday, February 11th, 2019

I want to tell you a Valentine’s story. This tale about relationships begins in an unexpected location—the Russell & Abbott breakroom, a rectangular concrete space with a laminate floor, shelves, a refrigerator and microwave, and a long table that will seat about twenty people. Just setting the scene—I hope it hooked you—but I digress.

A few Saturdays ago, the whole Russell & Abbott team came together there for a half-day training session. Of course, I attended, not only because it’s my job as a team member and resident canine blogger, but because they always serve food at training meetings, and more often than not, I receive ear scratches and multiple bites of ham biscuits under the conference table!

Because Russell & Abbott is always striving to provide the best customer service possible, team members were challenged with the question, “What do you do to create an exceptional customer experience?”

Team members started by contributing ideas such as “being on time” and “wearing shoe covers.” Then one team member said something profound: “Customers make the call exceptional for us, too,” he stated.

“Customers give us an exceptional experience. Let’s explore that,” said company president Chris Hurley.

The stories of kindness and consideration started flying! While we Tennesseans may be accustomed to displays of southern hospitality, many of our customers truly have gone above and beyond to enrich our business relationship. Here are just a few ways customers have shown love on the job:

  • Homeowners have served fresh, hot coffee on a frigid day or ice-cold lemonade and soft drinks during a blistering heat wave.
  • Homeowners have made water and restroom facilities available to us.
  • They have carried homemade cookies and soft drinks to us.
  • Photos of us working have been taken and posted to our Facebook page with nice comments.
  • Handwritten thank you notes have arrived in the mail.
  • Homeowners have referred their friends and family to Russell & Abbott.

On a difficult, all-day installation, one homeowner fired up the grill, cooked a hamburger lunch, and even made time to sit and visit with us while we ate. By day’s end, we were friends!

And this canine speaks for the whole team when I say, it feels like Valentine’s Day every time we get a five-star review with a specific comment about how we exceeded a customer’s expectations. I just can’t wag my tail hard enough when I read those!

So, thank you! It goes without saying that we love our customers—but I’m going to say it anyway. Russell & Abbott loves our customers. And on this Valentine’s Day, it’s wonderful to know that our love is returned.

Warmest Regards,

Olive

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Why Does My Furnace Smell Bad?

Monday, February 4th, 2019

girl-pinches-noseFebruary is the Official Month of the Gas Furnace! Okay, I made that up. I did discover that February 5th is National Weatherperson Day. I’m glad they get special recognition because I pay close attention to weather reports so I know when to give the best advice about taking care of your HVAC system.

Anyway, the reason I’m calling this the Month of the Gas Furnace is because gas furnaces do steady work throughout February. That’s why it’s extra important to pay attention to how the furnace in your home is running. Because if you’re wondering why your furnace is giving off bad smells—then something may be wrong. It may even be something serious that requires calling for fast furnace service in Lenoir City, TN.

I’ll break down what may be going on, based on the odors. I’ll try my best to get it across in human terms because my sensitive nose gets a lot more data!

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A Thanksgiving Reminder and Some Furnace Health Tips

Monday, November 19th, 2018

fall-cornucopiaOlive here getting in early on wishing you a happy Thanksgiving—and also reminding you to check out a holiday safety post about Thanksgiving food and your pets I wrote last year. The short version: Don’t use your pets like a garbage disposal after Thanksgiving feasting! Not all of those leftovers are healthy for dogs and cats, and many can be downright dangerous. Stuffing, the seasoning on turkey skin, grapes, artificial sweeteners, meat bones, and any kind of chocolate are all out of the question. Please help make this season a happy one for your household and your pets with this simple guide.

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Let It Snow! Free HVAC Equipment If It Snows on December 25!

Thursday, November 1st, 2018

onyx-equipment-presentHave you got your Halloween decorations stashed away and extra candy kept somewhere safe? (I.e. where your dogs can’t get to it? Chocolate is not good for me and my canine pals!) Then that must mean it’s already time to start thinking about the festive winter season.

No, I’m not here to get you stressed early about Christmas shopping. I’m here to make part of your season easier and possibly less expensive. This year we’re again holding our special Let It Snow! event. This is our way of embracing the holiday spirit and the season of giving!

If you purchase HVAC equipment from us between 11/1/18 and 12/20/18, and it snows two inches on Christmas Day (as measured at McGhee Tyson Airport), your purchase is FREE.

If you want more details about our HVAC equipment or you want to schedule installation service, call our offices today. If you’re looking for a new heating option for the coming winter, there’s never been a better time to arrange for it!

Stay warm (and hope for snow),

Olive

Russell & Abbott provides heating services in Maryville, Knoxville, Alcoa, Blount County, Knox County and Loudon County.

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You Can Never Know Too Much About Furnace Maintenance

Monday, October 22nd, 2018
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If you follow my blog (and hey, thanks!), then you know one of my favorite fall topics is furnace maintenance. I don’t do this just because I find it interesting—although I do—but because few parts of the job our team at Russell & Abbott do are more important for the comfort and safety of our clients than regular furnace maintenance.

What Does Furnace Maintenance Actually Do?

Plenty! The gas furnaces built today are durable and have high safety standards. Our own Onyx equipment is a good example of this.

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Keeping Your AC from the Junkyard (“What Do You Do With an Old AC?”)

Monday, October 8th, 2018

dumped-ac-units-scrapyardFall, the time when the air is filled with the sounds of people tossing old air conditioners into the scrapheaps, creating a pleasing metal clang

Okay, I’m making that up. However, fall is a time of the year when many homeowners decide to make changes to their HVAC systems, and that often means having the AC replaced. Of course, we would rather you didn’t have to do that, and we’re making it easier than ever with our “Dirty Secret” campaign: we’re offering our 21-Point Energy and Repair Saver System Tune-Up for only $97 for a limited time. That’s a huge savings off the regular price—and you’ll receive the benefit of keeping your AC from ending up sent to the scrapyard too early.

But that brings up an interesting question, one I often hear: “Hey Olive, do you just throw that old air conditioner into the junkyard?” I’m not a “junkyard dog,” but I am an HVAC expert dog, so I can tell you … the short answer is, “no.” The long answer is interesting, if you’d care to hang with me…

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Fall Is the Right Time to Upgrade Your Air Conditioning System

Sunday, September 23rd, 2018

onyx-unitI just stuck my sensitive canine nose out the door to test the weather. Yep, it’s still pretty warm out there. But my nose can also sense the approaching change in the weather. It might not be obvious to your human noses yet, but you’ll soon see that change in color in the leaves. (I don’t have the best color vision, but my spectacular sense of smell and hearing really make up for it!)

So what’s this mean for your air conditioning, you want to know? I mean, if it’s soon going to cool down out here, why worry about it? First, it’s important to remember that AC repair in Knoxville, TN is still important as long as you’re running the AC. Second, we’ve got an offer at Russell & Abbott that makes this fall a fantastic time to upgrade your old AC system to something great.

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Questions to Ask Your HVAC Contractor

Monday, August 13th, 2018

technician-shaking-handsI was recently reading articles about questions you should always ask your veterinarian. Like: “Is my pet a healthy weight?” “What flea and tick medication do you recommend?” “Am I feeding my pet the best food?” One question I didn’t notice on these lists was, “Hey, are you a real vet? Do you have a veterinarian’s degree?” And the reason that I didn’t see that question is that you don’t really need to ask it. To get a veterinarian practice started, you must have a degree in the field otherwise you’ll be in serious trouble.

But it’s different in the HVAC field: plenty of people who aren’t licensed or insured masquerade as experts. These are the “Chucks in a Truck” I’ve talked about before—and you don’t want Chuck working on your AC or heating or it could mean serious trouble for your comfort, or worse you may end up liable for damages.

This is why, when I started to think of questions you should ask your HVAC contractor, the first one that came to mind was…

Are you licensed and insured?

A true professional HVAC contractor will be licensed with the state, and that means they are also insured. Licensing means more than just “has the skill to do the job.” It also means a required level of insurance that protects you, the client, in case the contractor causes damage to your property during the work or one of the contractor’s employees sustains an injury. No licensed contractor will mind showing you evidence of licensing and insurance! We’re certainly glad to show that you can trust us!

Now, onto a few other important questions …

How much experience do you have in the industry?

It’s possible for a new contractor to provide quality work—but odds are much stronger on the side of a contractor with many years of history. It’s both a sign of skill and of customer satisfaction. A company with years of history probably has the trust of the community in general.

Do you have guarantees and warranties? How do they work?

If an HVAC contractor is confident in the work its technicians and other employees provide, they’ll back it up with guarantees and warranties. For example, we offer a great 10-10-10 warranty for our own Onyx equipment: that’s 10 years parts, 10 years labor, 10 years maintenance. We provide this because we know our Onyx equipment is that good!

Do you have references from other clients?

It’s a good idea to here straight from other satisfied customers so you know you’re talking to a contractor that people depend on! Any contractor worth hiring will gladly provide you with references.

Feel free to ask our great team any questions you have about our services! We’re licensed and insured, have a long history behind us, have the guarantees and warranties to put your mind at ease, and have some of the happiest customers around. We want you to trust us with your air conditioning service in Knoxville, TN and elsewhere in our service area.

Stay cool,

Olive

Ask us anything about your AC and heating needs! Russell & Abbott serves Blount, Knox, and Loudon Counties and the surrounding areas.

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