Friday, 09 March 2018 / Published in Efficiency, Home Comfort, HVAC System Advice

Spring is just around the corner…

Are you ready for the warmer weather? We sure are! Spring may be a few weeks away, but we’re already thinking about gardening, warm weather and sunny days. What’s your favorite part of the spring season?

As temperatures rise, you want to make sure your air conditioner is in good shape. Schedule spring preventative maintenance to ensure proper cooling system operation. A contractor can catch minor issues before they become big problems.

But, your air conditioner is only one piece (albeit the biggest piece) of the cooling equation. You also want to keep your thermostat in mind.

The Department of Energy recommends a thermostat setting of 78°F during the summer. You are likely to save more money on cooling at this temperature. But, you want to make sure you make the transition at the right time. Drastic temperature swings can raise bills and decrease performance.

During your maintenance appointment, ask your contractor about your thermostat options. You can choose to go with anything from an analog thermostat with a dial to a smart, Wi-Fi-enabled model. Programmable thermostats fall somewhere in the middle. With a programmable model, you can set the temperature based on your schedule. Your thermostat does the thinking for you. It makes airflow adjustments based on when you’re home and when you’re out of the house. This way, you are using the right amount of energy to cool your home at any given time.

Dramatic temperature swings are not good for your home comfort or wallet. But, small adjustments made by your thermostat can make a positive impact. Make sure you ask your contractor about your money-saving thermostat options.

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Thursday, 01 March 2018 / Published in HVAC System Advice, Maintenance, Top Tips

The cooling season will be here before you know it…

…is your HVAC system ready? It may only be the beginning of March, but it’s never too early to start preparing for the cooling season. When it comes to your HVAC equipment, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Here are some things you should do to prep for spring.

Clear away any winter debris. Gunk leftover from winter weather can restrict airflow. And, restricted airflow to your condenser leads to increased utility bills.

Plan your garden around your condenser. If you’re planning on planting a garden this spring, make sure you account for your HVAC equipment. You want to allow at least two feet of clearance around your condenser.

Change your furnace filter. You need to change your furnace filter at least once a season. If you haven’t changed it recently, the start of spring is a great time to do so. Plus, you’ll have a fresh filter to capture all those pesky spring allergens.

Consider upgrading to a programmable thermostat. With a programmable thermostat, you can set the temperature based on your schedule. A programmable thermostat can reduce the amount of time your air conditioner spends cooling an empty home.

Call your local heating and air conditioning contractor to schedule preventative maintenance. When the summer heat arrives, contractors get busy. If something goes wrong with your air conditioner, it could be days before a professional is able to get to your home to diagnose the issue. During the spring, contractors are less busy. They can catch any potential issues before they can rear their ugly head during the summer.

Be good to your heating and cooling system this spring. Contact  your local contractor today.

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Thursday, 22 February 2018 / Published in Home Tips, Save Money, Top Tips

Are you scared of your monthly utility bills?

You shouldn’t have to be. There are things you can do, large and small, that can help you reduce that area of your budget. Big things, like investing in high-efficiency heating and air conditioning equipment, are going to have the largest impacts on your monthly statements. However, these bigger changes are not the only way you can save. Some smaller adjustments don’t require any expense on your part.

Here are some smaller things you can do to help lower/control your monthly expenses.

Turn off the lights when you aren’t in a room.

Lower or raise the temperature your thermostat is set at (depending on the season).

Keep all your vents and registers open.

Keep the windows and doors of your home closed.

Change your furnace filter.

Sign up for budget billing if your utility company offers it.

Switch to high-efficiency light bulbs.

Avoid using space heaters and other supplementary heating methods.

Operate your ceiling fans correctly for the best distribution of air – clockwise during the winter and counter-clockwise during the summer.

Seal your windows and doors.

Set your thermostat to “AUTO” instead of “ON.”

Wash your clothes in cold water.

Take shorter showers.

Open or close curtains depending on the season.

Unplug items like televisions, kitchen appliances and more when they aren’t in use.

Layer up instead of turning up the thermostat during the winter.

Have a timer for your lights.

Take cooler showers.

Want more energy-saving tips? Make sure you contact your local heating and air conditioning contractor. As spring gets closer and closer, make sure you start thinking about air conditioner preventative maintenance. This is the best way to ensure that your air conditioner is ready to tackle the summer heat.

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Monday, 19 February 2018 / Published in Efficiency, Home Comfort, How It Works

Do you know how much the furnace has changed over the years?

Home heating has been around for a while. It started with simple wood-burning stoves and fireplaces to today’s high-efficiency, natural gas-powered furnaces. As the years have gone by, heating technology has improved more and more. This means the furnace sitting in your basement could be extremely out-of-date if it is an older model – running inefficiently and not giving you the home comfort you’re paying for.

Efficiency isn’t even the biggest difference between new furnaces and older models. Not only are today’s furnaces held to a higher standard efficiency-wise, they contain comfort-enhancing technology that can make your home more comfortable, and do so quietly.

Here are some technology improvements that make today’s furnace’s outstanding.

Variable-speed technology. Many of today’s gas furnaces, particularly high-efficiency models, contain variable-speed blower motors. A variable-speed model can do just what the name implies – vary the speed at which the air is blown throughout your home to exactly meet your comfort demands. This leads to a better mix of air, reducing hot and cold spots.

Multiple stages of operation. Traditional furnaces have two stages, 100% capacity and off. Furnaces that can operate in multiple stages can vary firing capacity to more directly meet your homes comfort demands at a given time. This help you save money and can lead to better home comfort.

Blower delay. Want to make sure you aren’t treated to a blast of cold air as soon as your furnace kicks on? Invest in a model that features a blower delay. This assures that your ducts are warm by the time air starts moving through them.

And that’s just scratching the surface. Make sure you ask your contractor about the comfort features in addition to efficiency when you’re buying your next furnace.

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