Apr 032016
 

Making your own home improvements is a great way to have a beautiful home customized to exactly your needs, and it can help you save money, too. Keep reading for what you need to know to accomplish all of your home improvement plans.

If your door is still squeaky after trying every imaginable method to fix it, you might want to buy a new hinge. Of course, you can find them at any store that sells home hardware. Remove the current hinge and replace it with the new one that you purchased. Then, get the hinge parts aligned and put the pins back into place.

Radiant Heat Tiles

Consider using radiant heat tiles when redoing any tile floors. They electrically provide heat to your floor. At least these are easily installable if you carefully follow the directions. This is a simple project that is easy to add to the overall project regardless of whether you are doing it yourself or hiring someone else. You will enjoy radiant heat tiles especially on a cold, winter morning.

When you tackle your improvement project, be careful to not demolish too quickly. Before removing anything, be sure to check the wall structure behind it. If any electrical configurations are involved, repairs may be costly.

TIP! Use a porch light with a motion sensor to cut down on your electric bill. These types of lights can be manually turned on and the sensitivity can also be adjusted.

You can easily dress up a teenager’s room by creating pillows that serve as a trendy focal point. Use old cloths like shirts or pants and cut them into neat designs to decorate your new favorite pillows. This will help dress up your teen’s room and add a splash of personality.

The advice shared here can help you save money that you don’t always need to give to a professional. These tips are sure to help you create the home that is perfect for you and your family. The more you work at it, the better it will get. Just follow our good advice to be certain your home improvement projects are well-done.

Mar 312016
 

Over time, weather damage can wreak havoc on your home and cost you thousands of dollars in repairs. For this reason, as well as, many others, it’s a great idea to make sure that you’re properly insured as a homeowner. Read these informative tips to find out how to get the best insurance.

To save money on your homeowner’s insurance consider the costs of construction projects before you begin building. Structures with wooden frames cost more to insure because they have more risk of burning, while structures with steel frames cost less because they are sturdier and hold up under adverse weather or other conditions.

TIP! Renting parties also have a need for their own insurance policy similar to standard home owner’s insurance. While the actual structure of your existing home will be protected by the fire insurance your landlord has, you will not get reimbursed for your belongings.

When considering home insurance, consider how important it is to have a higher or lower deductible. With a lower deductible, your rates will be higher throughout the year, but you’ll have to pay less for damages to your house. With a higher deductible, you keep more money in your pocket in terms of paying your premium, however most smaller claims will cost less than your deductible amount.

Before installing a pool or buying a trampoline, be sure to check with your insurance company to see what effect this will have on your premiums. Some companies will charge as much as 10% more to insure a house with a pool, trampoline or other potentially hazardous equipment on the property.

You can save money on your homeowners insurance by providing proof that you have made your home a safer place through the installation of a number of safety-related features. Install smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, deadbolt locks, burglar alarms, and/or fire alarms, and your insurer will likely offer you a preferred rate.

TIP! Homeowner’s insurance shouldn’t be up for consideration, you should go out and buy it. If you don’t have homeowner’s insurance, you will be out of luck if you are robbed, natural disaster strikes or your house burns down.

It’s important that you get the best possible insurance plan for your home. In the tips above, you have just learned how to save some great money on the best possibly policy for your home. Never neglect to get insurance because you never know when the worst might happen. You always need to stay protected.

Jan 212016
 

Keeping your home’s HVAC system running at its optimal performance is a task most homeowners should do, but not everybody knows how to accomplish that. That’s why it’s smart to hire a very skilled and professional HVAC contractor. The tips that follow will get you started.

Always make sure you are up-to-date about your HVAC unit. Know the brand name and model number. It is also helpful to have the maintenance history. Then, you’ll be ready to tell the contractor what they need to know.

Before selecting a HVAC repairman, know what you need done. You can’t get a decent estimate over a telephone, so disregard those numbers and wait until they view your system. It will be more difficult for him to assist you over the phone without the information readily available. So be aware of this information ahead of time.

Know the name and type of your HVAC system before looking for a repair person. Learn the brand, model, and if you have it, the maintenance history. Then, you’ll be ready to tell the contractor what they need to know.

Before the summer you should clean out your condenser fan’s blades and coils. If you are doing more than a light surface cleaning, make sure that the power is shut off to the HVAC unit. Also, be sure to clear leaves and debris from your condenser unit.

During the fall, leaves can gather around your HVAC. When you see nearby trees shedding their leaves, clean the fan grill on your unit constantly. Your fan needs an unobstructed way to get air inside, and the more blocked up it becomes, the more headaches will develop for you with the system.

Look for shade when placing a compressor outdoors. The cooler the air that the unit is able to access, the less work it has to perform.

Before the summer you should clean out your condenser fan’s blades and coils. Except when cleaning the outside, turn the unit off when performing any type of maintenance. In addition, be sure to get rid of any leaves or other debris that may have accumulated on the outside condenser.

Make sure your HVAC unit is in the shade. This will help you save on your energy bill.

You need to have a contractor review your unit twice a year. This should be done in Fall and Spring to prepare it for the extreme months. It doesn’t matter if your unit seems to be properly working, it is still advisable that you perform maintenance and resolve any potential problems.

To save money and be more comfortable in your home, install double-paned windows instead of single pane. Double pane windows can minimize the use of your air conditioner in hot weather since they keep the indoor air cooler. This same effect also keeps warm air in during the winter months.

If there are condenser units as part of your HVAC system, clean them often as they tend to have lots of debris. You don’t know when things are going to pile up, like right after it’s windy or rains, and that can ruin your system. It may even overheat, which can ruin your system.

In order to keep energy costs down, make sure heating and cooling systems are services at least once per year. During the service check, the system motor will be inspected, the moving parts will be oiled and the freon levels will be checked Doing this simple task can ensure that your system will be running for years with no problem!

Find an air conditioner calculator online to determine what models are best for you. If you purchase a unit that’s too large, it will not be efficient since it’ll cool the same. Read over the owner’s manual to see the manufacturers suggestions as to the cooling capacity of the unit for the most accurate information.

Figure out how long the HVAC company you choose has been in business. Companies that are well established have track records that can help you decide if they’re worth your money and time. It is always risky to hire a contractor with little experience.

Don’t get grass clippings on your outside unit. Direct the grass clippings in a direction away from the HVAC unit. Do the same when blowing snow or leaves.

Ask people you know for recommendations if you need to hire a contractor for an HVAC system. Someone who has used a contractor in the past is generally willing to let you know what they thought about it. It’s also a good way to learn the names of contractors you should avoid.

It is always a wise move to obtain a few quotes from different contractors because prices can vary. Making some phone calls before deciding is a good way to save money. To figure out what a good rate is, speak with about five or six contractors.

Determine the direction your home is facing to help get your HVAC system functioning efficiently. Block the sun in the morning with trees around your home. The less your home is heated, the less you’ll have to use your air conditioner to cool things off.

Many homeowners forget to oil their condenser at least once per year, but it is required. These are usually covered with rubber or metal caps. Look for an oil that is lightweight and then put about 10 drops inside the port. You don’t want to put in too much.

Obstructions often cause a clicking noise in a compressor. Most of the time such a noise is created by an object striking the blades of the fan in the system. Removing the debris will quickly fix the issue. Check the fan and coil before you waste time contacting a professional.

Use an HVAC company who has a lot of experience in the field. The best HVAC companies do their best to maintain their appointments and get to their customers quickly. These techs that come out should be quickly able to figure out the issue and remedy the problem right away. After they know what the problem is, it’s just a matter of time before they have it back and running properly.

Before hiring a contractor to work on your HVAC system, you should inquire about the type of experience they have. The best contractor for the job will have ample experience working with HVAC systems similar to the one you are using. Though it is possible that a newer contractor will be just fine, you may not want to take the risk.

If you need to decide the best place to put your outdoor compressor unit, consider putting it in a location that is in the shade. When it draws in air for cooling, it will be more efficient because it will not need to work as hard to cool down the air.

Seek references when hiring an HVAC contractor. Check to see what other customers have experienced with them. This will reduce your chances of hiring a scam artist.

Cover your condenser in the winter. This will ensure that your unit is sustained when it isn’t in use. However, if the temperature manages to drop beneath 60 degrees Fahrenheit, then you should cease use of the condenser all together. Turn the fan on instead, to avoid putting undue stress on the system.

When your HVAC works correctly, your home will be comfortable. But when these systems malfunction, it can be quite frustrating if you do not know the ins and outs of engaging the services of a skilled professional. Fortunately, armed with the information found above, every homeowner can know exactly what to do.

Have your HVAC serviced at least yearly. The spring and autumn times are the best time to have it checked. Even if nothing seems wrong, checking it out can help you find and fix potential issues.

Jan 142016
 

Having a great HVAC system that works well can make a home run better. It’s a great feeling when you come in from a sweltering day, and it’s cool inside, or you come in from a very blustery winter day to the warmth of the inside. Still, your HVAC unit can become a big hassle for you as well, if it stops working. It’s a good idea to learn what you can about HVAC and how to maintain things, and this article will teach you all about this.

Before you call someone to help you fix your system, be sure to know what sort of system you have in place. Know the model and brand and find it’s maintenance history, if possible. Your contractor will appreciate this information.

Don’t hire a contractor until you know a little about what you are facing. They won’t be able to offer you a quote if they haven’t seen your system. It’s even harder if you’re not able to explain what you’ve done. So be aware of this information ahead of time.

Know what type of system you currently have before calling someone to fix it. Write down the brand and the model and have all maintenance records on hand. This will help you give the new contractor the necessary information.

The HVAC unit in your home can become damaged from falling leaves. Clean the fan grill often when leaves are falling. When the fan becomes obstructed, you will lose out on quality air.

Many homeowners forget to oil their condenser at least once per year, but it is required. These are usually covered with rubber or metal caps. Buy an SAE 20 product that is lightweight, and then put no more than ten drops into the ports.

If possible, put your HVAC in a shaded area if it is outside. As you get your air conditioner to suck in cool air it won’t have to do too much work to cool it which saves you some money.

Cleaning the blades and coils will help the system run better. The power to the unit should be removed before you begin any maintenance, even cleaning. Remove leaves and debris from the condenser outside.

10 Percent

A good way to save money with your air conditioning is by installing a programmable thermostat. Turning down the thermostat around 10 percent for 8 hours per day can give you a 10 percent savings using the programmable thermostat. In addition, some models make things really easy on you, allowing you to adjust them from the computer.

If there isn’t anyone at home, then there’s no need for the AC unit to be running and wasting electricity. You don’t need to keep the house cool if you aren’t there. If will be constantly fighting the heat and using lots of electricity if it is left on all day.

If you have units that are condensers outside of the home, keep them free of debris. Particularly after bad weather, you should inspect your unit. This can lead to overheating.

Air conditioners sometimes ice up. Freezes also occur in your drain line. These freezes are easily confused as leaks to the untrained eye. If you notice this, switch your thermostat to fan only to disable the compressor. You can call a HVAC professional, but switching to the fan will make the ice melt.

Use online AC sizing calculators to figure out what size unit you need. If you get a unit that is too large, it will cost a lot in energy costs. Read over the owner’s manual to see the manufacturers suggestions as to the cooling capacity of the unit for the most accurate information.

Figure out how long the HVAC company you choose has been in business. The older they are, the more likely it will be for you to find out their history, which will help you gauge their quality. You will be taking a risk if you hire a newer contractor.

Be careful when doing yard work that you do not get debris on or in your unit. Direct the clippings away from the equipment. This also applies to leaf blowing and any other yard work that results in debris.

Each contractor establishes his own fees, so before you hire one, obtain a few estimates. This can help you to save money by knowing what people are charging. Never settle for a price until you’ve called at least five contractors to gain a realistic idea of a fair price.

If your current system isn’t working well enough, test out the ducts for leaks. Call your utility company and ask if they test for free, as many do. When the leaks are repaired, you’ll find that the testing paid for itself.

For top efficiency, figure out what direction your home faces. Trees placed in the right places can keep the sun from heating your home too much. The less heat inside the house, the less time that the AC has to work.

You need to lubricate parts of your fan condenser. You will see rubber or metal caps covering the ports. Chose SAE 20 oil, which has been proven to be the most effective.

It’s important to have doors and windows that are efficient for the most efficiency for your HVAC unit. They should be able to seal tightly without letting air seep in or out. Professional testing is available, and it is often free of charge.

Replace the air filter as often as possible. It’s a simple thing to do to keep it running properly. These filters are only a couple dollars.

Make certain that you hire an experienced contractor with a good reputation. Companies that are most reliable stick to the appointment time they give you. The technicians need to also know what to do to figure out what’s going wrong with an HVAC unit quickly. Once the technician figures out what’s wrong, they can help resolve the problems in a timely and cost-effective manner.

If you are choosing where to place your outdoor compressor device, try to put it in a place where there is plenty of shade. Your unit won’t have to work as hard to cool the inside air if the outside air it sucks from is cooler.

You should always ask a contractor a few simple questions before hiring them for a job, such as how long they’ve been working in this field. You want to make sure that they have experience with the type of work you need done. It’s best to find someone who knows what they’re doing.

In the winter, protect the condenser unit with a cover that fits around it. This will help it to last longer. Don’t turn it on if the temperature is below 60 either. Do this by simply turn on the fan so that you don’t cause the unit unnecessary strain.

Always check any references that you receive for an HVAC contractor. When a contractor voluntarily gives references, many assume they are legit. This may be a mistake. It only takes a couple minutes to call, so be sure and do it.

To boost the efficiency of your HVAC system, you should put your unit in a shady place. If your air conditioner is able to constantly suck in cool air, it won’t have to work overtime to cool your space, which can in turn save you money on your electricity bills.

These suggestions should benefit you in taking care of your heating and cooling issues. Without routine maintenance, disaster is inevitable. Fortunately, you came across the info here, and you now know what you must do to keep your system in working order.

Jan 132016
 

Sometimes it’s a wise move to bundle up your policies in order to save money on your insurance, and other times you want to have separate policies. It can all be a bit confusing based on your particular needs, so be sure that you’re using the tips provided in this article to help you shop for homeowners’ insurance.

When considering insurance for your home, it may be beneficial to have an alarm system installed. Not only will this be beneficial for your own safety, but your insurance rates will reflect the added security as well. After providing proof that your system is monitored by an agency, you may qualify for up to 5% off your rates.

TIP! Many times renters neglect to purchase renters insurance. The house is protected by fire insurance bought by your landlord, but your own belongings are not.

Make sure you have enough smoke detectors installed in your home. Older homes especially may need additional ones in order to get a better homeowners insurance premium. Even some newer homes can benefit financially from adding additional detectors apart from those necessary to meet the requirements.

To save money on your homeowners insurance, you should pay off the mortgage as soon as possible. Most companies will consider you a smaller risk when there is no debt against a property and you will take better care of the property. Look into how much faster you can pay the loan off, by refinancing at 15 years instead of 30.

You should always review your homeowner’s insurance policy annually to make sure that you still have the right policy for your home. Compare your premiums with quotes from other insurance policies. Be sure to take note of any changes that could affect your premiums, both on your property and in the neighborhood.

TIP! To be certain your claim is processed right, you ought to have a recent inventory of everything in your house. People that have had a tragedy in their home will let you know how difficult it becomes to recall everything that was lost.

Unlike auto and health insurance, homeowners’ insurance is able to cover a multitude of things. You never know exactly what you need until you sit down and really examine your personal situation. Use these tips to help you out when you go on the hunt for an affordable, quality insurance package.

Jan 122016
 

Take a sponge to your drywall! You should use a sponge rather than sand. It will take some practice to learn this new technique, but you’ll get it. Plus, less dust is created with the sponge.

TIP! Often, the value of your home can be increased with a small or simple improvement. When you are hoping to sell your home, a couple of small improvements should be considered.

Shop around for good deals on quality supplies for your home improvement projects. Placing down new flooring could be costly. That is why you need to compare different prices in order to save money. There’s many discount stores that can help you save money.

Tile can wear out over time. You can improve its look with a safe solution of vinegar and water. Pour your solution into a bucket and mop the floors with it. The solution will wash away dirt and grime, leaving your floors clean again.

After moving to your next location, consider taking the first few weeks for insulating the interior and encapsulating the warmer air. Windows and doors should all be weather-stripped. This will reduce the exchange of air from the outside of your home to the inside and vice versa. All of your cooling and heating systems will be more efficient. This will help you keep your bills down.

TIP! Brand new furniture, even from department stores, can break the budget. You may be able to make your room shine with by buying a few pieces of furniture from a thrift store of a garage sale.

A great tip for home improvement is securing the opinion of the professional before fixing a big task by yourself. A professional will be able to give you advice so that you do not make costly, or even dangerous mistakes. You can make a huge mistake if you don’t talk with a professional.

One good tip to remember when doing home improvement is to ensure you are working with a legitimate company. If they don’t have an address and they only call you, they probably don’t have the experience that you want. Instead, select someone with a good reputation.

Have you considered making the outside of your home an improvement project? With a little work, you could convert a bit of your yard into a living space nearly as comfy as the inside of your home. This area would be great for entertaining, barbecuing or just relaxing.

Dec 022015
 

The level of comfort experienced within a home has a great deal to do with the temperature that it maintains. Since this is the case, it’s good to keep the HVAC system in a home working well. If you do not properly care for it, you should expect terrible living conditions and expensive repairs. There are many useful tips and tricks within this article you can use to keep your home’s HVAC healthy.

If you struggle with your HVAC, try touring your home before calling a professional. Know what part of the house is cold and which is hot. This can help the contractor determine the problem areas quickly and fix the problem easily.

Prior to choosing an HVAC customer, try to have an idea of what you want done. Discussing the problem is simplified if you understand what has happened with the unit. If you can’t explain changes you’ve made, the process will be even more difficult. So, figure out this information before anything else.

Check out the system that you have before you call a professional. Know the brand name and model number. It is also helpful to have the maintenance history. This will enable you to give your chosen contractor any information they might need.

During the fall, leaves can gather around your HVAC. Be sure to clean your fan grill frequently when trees nearby are shedding. The fan needs to have an unobstructed path for air to enter the unit, and if it becomes blocked, you will end up with many headaches with the unit.

Lubricate the oil ports on your condenser once each year. These are usually covered with rubber or metal caps. You should select an SAE 20 oil since it is lightweight and does not contain detergent. Be sure to use just 10 drops or so, or your system may overfill.

Try to choose a shady place to locate the outdoor compressor device. The cooler the air which goes in, the less work the unit will have to do.

If you are having issues with your HVAC, do a tour of your house before you call in help. Know what part of the house is cold and which is hot. That way, the contractor will have an easier time diagnosing the problem and repairing it fast.

When it gets cold outside, turn off the outdoor condensers. To avoid damage, units should be turned off when temperatures are below 60 degrees. This can keep your system working for years and save you a lot on repairs.

Install a thermostat you can program to save money on cooling your home. In fact, you can save as much as 10 percent on both heating and cooling when you turn your thermostat by by 10-15 percent for at least 8 hours daily. You can often control it from your mobile phone!

You should have your HVAC system inspected at least once, but preferably twice, per year. This inspection will ensure that your unit is working efficiently, including a freon level and motor check, and oiling moving parts. These simple things will keep your system running at peak performance.

By the end of spring, the fan blades and coils of your condenser should be thoroughly cleaned, so operation can proceed with greater efficiency. Turn off your power before doing any job like this. Also, be sure to clear leaves and debris from your condenser unit.

Turn off your air conditioner when no one is home to help save money. The house will only heat to certain level and a decent HVAC system can quickly cool this down once you are home. However, leaving it on increases your electric bill and wear and tear on the system.

To choose an HVAC contractor that’s trustworthy, take time to research some companies you’re interested in, along with their reputations. Check with the BBB (Better Business Bureau), and look them up on review sites online to see what previous customers have to say about their experience. Doing this can help you make a better decision.

Problems with an air conditioning unit happen when it ices up. This can also happen on the drain line. If this is something you notice, switch the thermostat in your home to fan only so the compressor is disabled. It is best to call a professional in to fix this particular issue, even though the switch to fan setting should cause the ice to start melting.

Be sure to regularly clean debris from external condenser units. You don’t know the amount of stuff that can pile up right after heavy winds or a storm. This can lead to overheating.

Look online for a/c sizing calculators so you can really understand the unit size needed for your home or room. Buying a unit which is too big reduces efficiency. Check your manual to learn what it is rated by the manufacturer if you want accurate information.

Speak with someone close to you to see if they can recommend someone good to service their HVAC unit. Those who have had this work done will know the best options. This will also help you to avoid undesirable companies.

Check the Internet for reviews on those who fix or install HVAC systems. A simple search should yield a number of sites with informative reviews. This will make it easier for you to find the right contractor.

Make sure clippings don’t get on your outdoor units when your mowing your lawn. Aim the grass clippings in the other direction. This same tip applies when you are blowing fallen leaves around the yard. Grass and leaves pose a serious problem for the internal functioning of your unit.

Be sure to test for leaks in the ducts if your system seems inefficient. This is a job your local utility provider may do for you inexpensively or even free of charge. When the leaks are repaired, you’ll find that the testing paid for itself.

Your HVAC system will run more efficiently if your windows and doors are energy efficient. They have to have a tight seal, stopping air from going in or out. Have them inspected by a professional. This is often a free service.

Replace the air filter monthly. This is an easy and essential thing to do. Filters are relatively cheap, so it does not cost much to do this.

HVAC units may suffer when leaves are falling off the trees. Make sure you clean out your fan grill often once nearby trees start shedding their leaves. Because the fan requires a clear path for air to enter, you may encounter issues with your system if the fan gets blocked up.

Be sure to select an experienced and competent HVAC company. A reliable company will ensure their technicians keep appointments and stay on their schedule. An experienced person will quickly know what is going on with your unit. Once the technician figures out what’s wrong, they can help resolve the problems in a timely and cost-effective manner.

Think about the air flow coming out of the air conditioner and where you want to place it for maximum comfort. If you have no choice but to put it in the corner, be sure to buy a unit which allows for the air flow direction to be changed away from the wall.

Hire contractors that can repair or install HVAC systems with 24-hour emergency services. They should be able to get to your home whenever you need them there, be it in the middle of a heatwave or in the worst snowstorm of the year.

Lubricate your fan condenser at least once a year. You will see rubber or metal caps covering the ports. Get an oil that is SAE 20 and put about 10 drops into each port, but don’t overfill it.

Now you know how to maintain the HVAC in your home. Avoid letting it fail by regularly maintaining the system. Use what you’ve learned to keep your system up and running.

Nov 032015
 

Many people want to learn more about their HVAC unit, but they aren’t sure where to begin because they think it is simply too complicated. Of course, every little bit of information will improve your understanding. This can be made easier with the following advice.

Tour your home before calling a contractor. Determine which rooms feel cold and which feel hot. Doing so can help your technician fix your HVAC issue quickly.

To make sure your condenser fan works properly, keep the fan blades and the coils clean. Except when cleaning the outside, turn the unit off when performing any type of maintenance. Also, be sure to clear leaves and debris from your condenser unit.

Before calling for help, know the system you have. You need to know who manufactured the product and the item number. Also, get the maintenance records from your files if you have them. This will facilitate the process when your contractor asks for this information.

Clean the debris off your outdoor condenser unit. Wind can pile up all sorts of debris against its grill. The whole thing can overheat, causing major problems and possibly an enormous expense for you.

Keep your outdoor units free of debris when you are mowing the lawn. Make certain the debris goes away from it. This also applies to leaf blowing and any other yard work that results in debris.

Try to prevent debris from getting in your HVAC unit. Be sure to clean your fan grill frequently when trees nearby are shedding. Your fan needs an unobstructed way to get air inside, and the more blocked up it becomes, the more headaches will develop for you with the system.

Check the whole house before you call for help. Determine which rooms feel cold and which feel hot. That knowledge can help the technician figure out what is going on.

A good place to place your compressor unit outside is in a shady spot. If it sucks in cool air, it will need to work less to coll the air inside, which can make it last longer.

Be sure to have twice annual HVAC system checks. This should be done in Fall and Spring to prepare it for the extreme months. Even if you don’t think anything’s wrong, it’s still worth an inspection.

If at all possible, install double-paned windows in your home instead of those with a single pane. Double pane windows can help minimize how much you use your air conditioner in the summer, because they keep cool air inside the home. This also helps keep it warm in the winter.

When you call an HVAC system for help, you need to be aware of what you need them to do before calling. They won’t be able to offer you a quote if they haven’t seen your system. If you can’t explain changes you’ve made, the process will be even more difficult. So, you should know this beforehand.

A programmable thermostat can help you save money on your air conditioning bill. A thermostat that’s programmable is going to save you around ten percent on the heating and cooling costs you have to pay when you turn it back about fifteen percent for a part of the day. Also, you can find a thermostat that is controllable from a computer or smart phone.

If you’re away from home during the day, raise the temperature setting on your air conditioner to save money. The house will only heat to certain level and a decent HVAC system can quickly cool this down once you are home. Leaving it on all the time only makes it work harder and results in a larger utility bill.

Before you invest in any HVAC contractor, make sure you spend a good deal of time researching their reputations and credentials. It can be helpful to check out the online reviews of previous customers and it is always wise to check their reputation as listed on a Better Business Bureau website. In this way, you can be more sure of getting a good HVAC company.

Be sure to clean external condenser units regularly. Leaves, twigs and other troublesome objects can accumulate, particularly after very windy weather, and this will wreak havoc on your system. Overheating may be the result if you don’t.

Research what size air conditioner you should purchase for the size of your home by using online calculators they have for this purpose. If you get a unit that is too large, it will cost a lot in energy costs. Check your manual to learn what it is rated by the manufacturer if you want accurate information.

Figure out how long the HVAC company you choose has been in business. Companies that are around awhile have a better record than those that haven’t been. Hiring a new company will be riskier.

Checkout online reviews if you do not know which contractor to call for installation, maintenance or repair of your HVAC system. There are a number of great sites out there that let customers talk about how they were treated by services. This will help you find a top notch professional.

Clean your condenser’s fan blades and coil in the spring. Before you do so, shut off the power to ensure that none of the parts will move while you work on it. Then you need to get the grill popped off and get the blades out so you can clean them and your unit gently.

Hvac System

Have you been thinking about buying a new HVAC system? Many considerations must be scrutinized. An HVAC system gets its rating by how effective it will heat and cool an area. Therefore, you may want to opt for a larger unit.

Check the ducts to find any leaks if you you feel your existing system is not up to snuff. A local utility company often performs free duct testing. If it isn’t free, then it is still cheaper than an HVAC specialist in most areas. This testing can have large financial benefits.

Make sure clippings don’t get on your outdoor units when your mowing your lawn. Shoot the grass away from the unit. This also applies to leaf blowing and any other yard work that results in debris.

Which way does your home face? Block the sun in the morning with trees around your home. If there is less heat in the home from sunlight, then the HVAC will require less work to actually cool the home.

To gain maximum HVAC efficiency, you need efficient windows and doors too. Seal them tightly to prevent air from coming in. A good professional can test this for you, and they might even do it for free.

The one thing you should always do on a monthly basis is change the air filter on your HVAC system. This represents an easy way to keep your system working well. Filters only cost a few bucks, and it’s a small price to pay.

Your HVAC system could suffer when trees begin dropping their leaves. Clean the fan grill often when leaves are falling. Your fan needs an unobstructed way to get air inside, and the more blocked up it becomes, the more headaches will develop for you with the system.

Prior to engaging the services of a contractor to handle your HVAC system, be sure to find out about the kind of experience he has. Have they done this type of job before? You want a top professional on the job.

Does your contractor provide you with an all-day emergency hotline? They owe it to you to show up to fix anything, no matter how extreme the weather or what time of day it may be.

This advice should make your HVAC issues a piece of cake to deal with. The above tips can help simplify your experience. Get started now and you’ll do great!

If your fan condenser has oil ports, you must lubricate it once per year. You can find these ports covered with rubber or metal caps. Use SAE 20 oil that is lightweight and detergent free, and put ten drops or fewer into each one. Make sure not to overfill them.

Sep 192014
 
energy-saving

The winter is approaching and tri-county area residents are already talking about the upcoming winter forecast. The cold reality will be that this is going to be an expensive winter for heating your home.

If you’ve ever thought about alternative heating ideas for your home, this just might be the fall to get started. Here are a few ideas that might help:

1. Adjust your thermostat. By turning your thermostat back 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that households can save 10 percent a year on heating and cooling costs. Why not go a step further and invest in a programmable thermostat, or smart home technology that allows you to program your heat from your smartphone. If you don’t have a programmable thermostat; read our purchasing guide, take a look to our guide and find the perfect one for you.

2. Use fireplace inserts. Make your fireplace airtight and more efficient, especially if you have an older fireplace with an open hearth that is only 5-10 percent efficient.

3. Invest in a pellet stove. A “distant cousin” to a wood stove, this mode operates on pellets made from compacted sawdust or wood chips instead of conventional fossil fuels.

4. Consider a masonry heater. They produce more heat and less pollution than pellet or wood stoves. They usually burn wood, but go through less wood because they burn slower.

5. Weatherize your home by looking for cracks and holes in the foundation, doorways and windows. Apply weather stripping or caulk to drafty areas.

6. Install radiant heating, a dry heating system placed under carpeting or ceramic tile. It may cut heating bills by 20 to 40 percent over time, without worrying about having to adjust a thermostat.

7. Use solar power. Although this can be an expensive endeavor, retrofitting your home with solar panels to use the sun’s rays for energy can be a money-saver in the long run. However, it may take up to a dozen years to realize those savings.

8. Install double-paned windows. These reduce the heat loss, which can drain 10 to 25 percent of your heating bill.

9. Install a geothermal system. It uses the constant, stable temperature of the earth as a base to heat your home. Large coils are buried in the earth and a liquid, usually a mixture of water and anti-freeze, runs through the tubes. That water is then run through your home. A compressor extracts the heat from the water, and then raises the temperature to what your thermostat is set at. The USDE estimates that a geothermal heat system runs between 300-600 percent efficiency on the coldest nights.

10. Upgrade your current heating system. Mechanisms like Heat Manager or a hot water heating system fuel economizer can be installed to help curb fuel consumption by up to 10 percent.

Five ways to insulate your windows for winter

1. Rubber weather sealing. Cut long strips down to fit your window dimensions, then peel and stick to the frame to close any gaps and keep out drafts.

2. Window insulation film. Kits usually include plastic shrink film applied to the indoor window frame with double-stick tape, then heated with a hair dryer to shrink the film and remove wrinkles.

3. Cellular shades. These insulate while still letting in light through the windows. They can be ordered and custom cut from home and design centers. They can be expensive and may not insulate as well as heavier curtains.

4. Layered curtains. Use heavy fabrics or layered curtains over the windows to keep out drafts.

5. Draft “snakes.” These fabric tubes can be placed on a windowsill or under a door to prevent cold air from creeping in. They’re cheap and easy to make, but only insulate the sill, not the window.

Source: Apartment Therapy

Other tips to reduce your heating bills:

1. Use your ceiling fans to distribute warm air.

2. Use a humidifier to help the air in your home feel warmer.

3. Block leaks around windows and doors to keep warm air from escaping and cold air from coming in.

4. Make sure your ductwork is properly connected, because you can lose up to 60 percent of your heated air.

5. Have your furnace checked annually to ensure it is working safely and efficiently.

Source: One Hour Heating and Air Conditioning