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Posts Tagged: home inspection

Enjoying wintertime energy savings

Posted On: Filed Under: Heating No Comments on Enjoying wintertime energy savings

As the temperature continues to drop, knowing how to maximize your wintertime energy savings will not only reduce your financial costs, but also improve the overall energy-efficiency, comfort, and eco-friendliness of your home. Whether you’re interested in considering a new heating system or thermostat, or are just looking for simple ways to save money and stay warm at home, there is an option that offers energy benefits for you and your family this year.

Consider a new heating system

Most furnaces are expected to last 15-20 years, while heat pumps typically last an average of 16 years. If your heating system is more than a decade old, it may be starting to struggle with providing the heating you want with efficiency and reliability. Even an old heater that is regularly serviced will be less efficient than a newer system, simply because of advances in technology that have been made since its purchase. If your heater has been experiencing problems for a while or you have called for several heating repairs in the recent past, it’s also a good indication that you may benefit from installing a new heating system altogether. Talking to Washington Energy Services about your current heating system and the benefits of replacing it can help you decide whether this solution is the right investment in your home energy savings.

Upgrade your thermostat

Even if your heating system is still relatively new, it’s also important to take a look at its control system. An outdated thermostat can hinder your furnace’s efficiency by affecting the control you have over the appliance and the heat it puts out. Upgrading an older manual thermostat to a digital programmable thermostat is a simple way to increase your home’s energy efficiency by exerting finer control over the temperature setting you choose. Using programs to heat your home only when you are present and reduce your furnace’s output while you area away is another great energy- and money-saving strategy that takes very little time and work to establish.

Schedule heating maintenance

Even if you haven’t had your heating service take a look at your HVAC system yet this year, it’s never too late to schedule a heating tune-up and cleaning. Regular maintenance is one of the best ways to extend the lifetime of your furnace and improve its heating output, reducing wasted energy caused by poor airflow and dirty or worn components. Our technicians can also make recommendations as needed to keep your heating system working as efficiently as possible, so you can continue enjoying energy savings for years to come. Regular maintenance also holds other benefits, including a lower risk of heating breakdowns that will cause stress and inconvenience during the cold winter weather. Even better, joining our Guardian Maintenance Club will keep your system running well for years to come.

If you have questions about heating your home in Seattle, we have the personalized answers and solutions you need for greater energy savings and comfort. You can find out more about us on our website, or check out our blog for more home heating tips.

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Fall for these 5 autumn maintenance tips

Posted On: Filed Under: Heating, Tankless water heaters 2 Comments on Fall for these 5 autumn maintenance tips

 

 

Keep the cold out.

Feeling a little drafty now? Just wait until winter. Drafty doors and windows not only make for uncomfortable living spaces, but they also cause unnecessary energy loss and costs. That’s why it’s crucial to conduct a window and door audit of your home and install any necessary weather stripping or caulking to keep the warmth in and the cold out. If your windows continually allow cold air in or you see condensation between panes, it’s probably time to replace them. Luckily, with 20% off all windows and doors from WES, this can be your warmest winter yet.

Get your mind in the gutter.

Fall’s beautiful red and gold leaves mean clogged gutters and a whole lot of work if left for months on end. Clean your gutters and downspouts now and regularly throughout the fall and winter. Also, consider installing gutter guards to keep this task manageable (and bearable).

Inspect your furnace.

Before you really kick your furnace into full gear, consider having it serviced by a professional. Our precision tune-ups provide a 37-point inspection that will ensure your system runs efficiently, effectively, and safely. By inspecting, testing, tightening, and cleaning, this service can also help extend the life of your furnace. If it’s time to replace it, check out furnaces from WES—they’re 20% off for a limited time.

Speaking of heat

This fall, inspect your water heater for leaks and always keep an eye out for rusty water. Pay special attention to the year in which your water heater was manufactured. If it is nearing or over ten years old—or if it’s just not performing to your needs and you’re tired of cold showers in the morning—consider replacing it with a tankless water heater from WES; they’re 20% off for a limited time. With optimum efficiency and endless hot water, it’ll ensure your winter mornings stay warm and relaxing.

Prepare your yard.

It’s time to accept it—spring and summer are over. And while we still get to enjoy the beautifully colored foliage of fall for a while longer, it’s time to prepare our yards for winter. Here are a few quick tips to get your yard in shape for the colder temperatures.

  • Remove dead annuals and mulch perennials—mulching will help prepare your yard for winter by guarding plants the cold, harsh weather.
  • Rake leaves and lawn clippings to prevent areas of your lawn from being buried under leaves and getting sun-deprived.
  • Clear out any plant debris from your garden to prevent mildew, mold, and other problems that can result from stagnation.
  • Do one last complete weeding of your lawn and garden.

Keep in mind that fall is a great time to catch up on any home improvement and maintenance tasks that may have fallen to the wayside this summer. You’ll be glad you did in mid-January when the temperature has dropped, and the cozy fire is calling your name.

Don’t forget, our cash for energy clunkers sale continues until 11/30/2015, so be sure to check out our heating and cooling systems, windows, doors, tankless water heaters, siding, generators, gas fireplace inserts, and insulation. We have the products you want at 20% off, and the energy savings you need to keep your home (and your wallet) happy.

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What is a home energy audit?

Posted On: Filed Under: Home energy audit No Comments on What is a home energy audit?

 

Enter Will Martinez – Home Performance Extraordinaire!

Will begins his Home Performance Audit

The audit begins with a test for leaks throughout the home including at the meter.

gas leaks test

A lot of energy loss can be attributed to under-code insulation in the attic.

Attic Inspection Inspecting insulation levels

The great part for the homeowner is that you can explore your attic and crawlspace along with the auditor – without ever suiting up or leaving your seat. This live GoPro video feed allows the customer to ask their own questions about what’s going on in these areas of the home.

Watch the inspection on a tablet

In addition to the outside meter, the water tank and the combustion system is checked for wasteful and potentially harmful gas leaks.

checking combustion system for gas leaks

An area where homes lose efficiency (and homeowners lose a lot of money) is via leaky ductwork. Here, Will finds many opportunities for improvement. A well-sealed duct will not only prevent your conditioned air from escaping into unused spaces, but it will keep your system from working harder than it needs to.

Checking ducts in the crawlspace

Our infrared camera will find hot or cool spots in your home – opportunities to seal or insulate better. Combined with our blower door test (below) you can see in real time heat or cold air (depending on the season) escaping your home where you don’t want it to.

Using the IR camera

A blower door is a powerful fan that mounts into the frame of an exterior door. The fan pulls air out of the house, lowering the air pressure inside. The higher outside air pressure then flows in through all unsealed cracks and openings.

Blower door test Blower door test

Will and the homeowner are able to see the air coming in using a smoke pencil and by using an infrared camera.

Air leaks seen via IR Camera

Once Will collects all of the data he needs, he’ll head back to the home office and create a detailed 16-page report. The report provides the data collected during the audit and adds professional recommendations to make your home more efficient.

If you’re ready to assess your home’s performance and create a game plan for saving energy (and money) – contact us using our free estimate form or give us a call at 800-398-4663.

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Avoiding the home buyer’s blues

Posted On: Filed Under: Siding, Home energy audit No Comments on Avoiding the home buyer’s blues

 

The major problems tended to be in the exterior (roof, siding, paint, windows), and plumbing. Many experienced mold or insect issues, heating and cooling systems that didn’t perform, and appliances that would not run. They discovered rooms with no heat, wiring problems, basements that flooded with the first rain and bad smells. There were also complaints about poor new home construction including squeaky floors and low quality materials.

In this day and age, the majority of home buyers are obtaining home inspections prior to purchase and making the sale contingent upon the outcome. So how could these home problems have been missed?

What’s in a home purchase inspection?

Whether a professional performs it, or you do it yourself with a checklist, a home inspection typically includes:

  • Check appliances, heating and cooling system, plumbing fixtures and electrical outlets to see if they work.
  • Visual inspection of the home exterior, structure, pipes and electrical, noting the condition and type of materials and obvious signs of damage or water intrusion.

The inspector runs all the faucets and flushes the toilets. He or she tests the plugs in the bathroom to see if they are GFI plugs. They go up on the roof and down in the crawlspace. They determine if the dishwasher functions, but not how well it cleans. An inspector will identify damage and note it in a report.

This is a visual inspection so it does not usually include testing of equipment beyond establishing that it turns on. It does not include insect, mold or radon inspection, air quality measurement, alarm systems, fireplace masonry, energy cost evaluation, code compliance or identification of sewer or plumbing issues beyond visible leaks or clogged drains.

Home Inspector

Home inspector qualifications and background matter

Many people say that if you use an inspector suggested by the realtor, they will be in cahoots to promote the sale. That conflict of interest is hard to determine, but checking the background and experience of an inspector is easy, and a good idea. In Washington State, inspectors are licensed, and unless they were in business before 2009, they have to pass a licensing exam with both a written and field test. Washington is one of only a few states to require this higher level of licensing.

Other helpful inspections

If you are buying an older home and want to increase your knowledge before you buy, you might want to add some of the following additional inspections to your buying process. These are each less than $300 and could save you much more in surprise repairs.

A plumbing inspection done by a licensed plumber can augment your home inspector’s report, especially if you request toilet leak testing and a camera inspection of your sewer line. Toilets are often a source of water loss and expensive water bills for the home, and an easy test can pinpoint if they need repair. The sewer line is the most expensive part of the plumbing to fix. It may clog and backup into your house, or unseen from above, be crushed by tree roots in the yard. A camera inspection allows you and the plumber to see just what is going on, and gives you an opportunity to ask the seller to take action.

Heating and cooling systems, water heaters and gas fireplaces can be inspected by a licensed HVAC professional in a diagnostic service. If the owner has had a recent maintenance service, you can request a record of that service and see if any issues were found.

Another type of inspection to enhance your knowledge as a home buyer would be a home energy audit. A home energy audit is a comprehensive series of tests which look at the house as a whole system including heating, cooling, ventilation, indoor air quality, insulation, gas combustion safety, damage from water intrusion, and energy use. While the audit is most often used by people preparing to make energy efficient upgrades, it could be a great benefit, especially to home owners buying an older home.

Washington Energy provides plumbing inspections, HVAC diagnostic services and home energy audits with their licensed and highly skilled technicians. Contact us for more information or to find out more about the NW Energy survey.

* 2015 NW Energy Survey, conducted among 1065 Western Washington adult homeowners.

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Love it, leave it or fix it

Posted On: Filed Under: Windows, Tank water heaters, Tankless water heaters, Insulation No Comments on Love it, leave it or fix it

Whether you love it or hate it – one thing is certain, home improvements and repairs come with the territory. Homeowners in Western Washington revealed what made their lists in 2015 in our Northwest Energy Survey.

FINAL RGB Infographic ll-730 px_72 dpi

 

 

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2015 government changes to water heaters will affect you

Posted On: Filed Under: Tank water heaters, Tankless water heaters 39 Comments on 2015 government changes to water heaters will affect you

Who made the new rulings?

The National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA) was approved by Congress and is administered by the US Department of Energy (DOE). This is the same organization that oversees the EnergyStar program. That translates to: this is serious business and a real change for all water heaters sold in the US.

What are the new water heater regulations?

Water heaters produced after April 16, 2015 must conform to new energy efficiency standards. These translate to a mandatory increase of 3% – 30% greater efficiency vs. current models. The amount varies by tank size based on formulas. The larger the tank, the more the efficiency is required. The gains in efficiency are small, but given that the vast majority of homes in America have a water heater; small can add up to big savings for the environment.

How does this affect me?

If you have a tankless water heater with an efficiency rating above .82, (all that we sell are at this level), good news, your water heater already complies. However if you are in one of the hundreds of thousands of Western Washington homes, condos and apartments with a standard tank water heater – please read on!

In order to gain the efficiency, manufacturers will be adding additional insulation to water heater tanks. This will impact you as follows:

1. Fitting it in your house. Unlike the new light bulbs that fit in the same sockets as incandescent ones, the new tanks are not going to be the same size. The Rheem tankless water heaters are 27-1/2″ in height, 18-1/2″ in width and 9-3/4″ in depth. If you have a tight closet or a small door, you may have to relocate your water heater, or take off door jambs to bring it in. And sorry, we (or any installer) would have to charge for that if we did it. There will also be new and larger venting required for some gas water heaters.

2. Manufacturer price increase. All of the manufacturers will have to re-tool production lines, and this is expensive. Combine that with increased materials cost from adding more insulation to tanks and we anticipate retail price increases in the range of $100.

3. Custom install solutions needed. To fit some homes and apartments may require creative planning on the part of your installer. For example: If a 50 gallon tank won’t fit, a 40 gallon tank with an added mixing valve may produce the hot water you need. Fortunately our team has the experience to do that.

4. Some larger sized tanks may be discontinued. If you have a large size electric tank (66 or 80 gallon) or 75 gallon gas water heater, some of these are being discontinued. While new products may come along to replace them, the installer community has not yet seen them.

What can I do right now?

Standard water heater tanks last around 8-10 years. If you are thinking it’s time to replace or if you have an older tank located in a tight closet (hello condo & apartment dwellers!), we recommend doing it sooner than later.

Three choices for replacement

1. Upgrade to tank water heaters that already qualify at the new energy efficiency levels, (gas or propane).

2. Replace with your same tank style and size while still available.

3. Consider a move to a tankless water heater.

For gas water heaters, models are available today that meet and actually exceed the new standards. Tankless water heaters are an available option as they run on gas or propane and meet the new energy standards. We also carry super efficient standard tanks, for example, Rheem Power Damper water heaters. They are EnergyStar rated and exceed the new efficiency standards, saving you even more on your water heating costs. This type of water heater costs a bit more than today’s standard gas water heater, but we expect it to be closer in price to the new gas water heaters in 2015. So you can start saving energy now, at around the price you might pay next year.

Current hot water heater tank styles can still be installed after April 16, 2015 but inventory will eventually run out. Installers and suppliers are stocking the last of the available current style tanks as we know many people will want them.

Whatever the new rules bring, Washington Energy will be able to provide you with water heater choices, custom installation and competitive pricing. For a free all-inclusive quote over the phone, please call us at 800-398-4663. Group discounts are available now for condos and apartment buildings.

Get a free estimate

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5 basics about air sealing for single family homes

Posted On: Filed Under: Home energy audit 2 Comments on 5 basics about air sealing for single family homes

1. Sneaky leak spots

There are more places where air leaks in and out of your home than you may be aware of. Most people recognize that air leaks around windows and doors, but this illustration from the Department of Energy’s Guide to Air Sealing*, shows 19 areas of the home where measurable air leaks can affect air quality and energy loss. For example, did you know that air leaks around every single electrical outlet and switch plate in your house?

air leakage and sealing

2. Find a balance with fresh air allowance

Every penetration through the sides, roof or underside of your home has the potential to leak if not sealed properly. That includes windows, doors, vents, pipes, electrical cords, hose bibs and more. But before you seal, you must determine how much fresh air is needed to ensure healthy indoor air quality and ventilation of combustion equipment. Without proper ventilation, harmful gases could remain in your house (such as carbon monoxide) and/or water vapor could accumulate presenting a danger from mold and mildew. When we talk about “combustion equipment”, this includes anything that burns a fuel, whether that is natural gas, propane, or wood. Examples are:

  • Furnace
  • Washer /dryer
  • Gas stove
  • Fireplace
  • Water heaters

3. Weather stripping

The easiest Do-it-Yourself leak fixes are weather stripping doors and caulking windows. Materials to do weather stripping and window caulking can be purchased from most hardware stores and applied by the homeowner. Most window companies require caulking to be done in order to maintain warranties for their windows. So it’s a good idea to do it annually, or at least check it for wear annually. Caulking around flues, vents and pipes is recommended to be done by a professional contractor using caulking materials that are safe for the application.

4. The fireplace culprit

Your windows and doors may be closed and sealed, but there may be another big hole open for air to escape. Fireplaces can leak through the flue not closing tightly, through small cracks in the masonry chimney, or from the penetration of the chimney through the roof. During a home energy audit, air leaks from your chimney will be identified, but beyond that, chimney inspection should be performed on a routine basis, if only to make sure animals haven’t nested in it. The National Fire Protection Association says “chimneys, fireplaces and vents should be inspected at least once per year for soundness, freedom from deposits and correct clearances”.

5. Fact check from other experts

According to the US Department of Energy “air sealing is one of the most cost-effective ways to improve the comfort and energy efficiency of your home. Hire a certified professional contractor for best results”. We didn’t make that last part up.

Consider a home energy audit

A certified home energy auditor is trained to assess the air sealing and ventilation needs of your home. They use technology such as blower doors tests, infrared cameras and other measures to locate sources of air leakage and ensure adequate ventilation. The auditor is trained to look for safety and health issues, and local building codes. Why does this matter? Because you can actually over seal your house, locking in carbon monoxide from gas appliances.

Washington Energy Services provides BPI certified home energy audits and air sealing services. Learn more and see if your home might benefit from an audit.

 

* Source “Retrofit techniques and technologies: Air Sealing – A guide for contractors to share with homeowners,” Vol 10., Building America Best Practices Series, Prepared by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory for the US Dept. of Energy (April 12, 2010)

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Tips for safely insulating your home

Posted On: Filed Under: Home energy audit, Insulation 3 Comments on Tips for safely insulating your home

Insulation is an important part of reducing energy bills and increasing comfort. But did you know that you can create safety issues in your home if you do not install insulation correctly? Here are three tips to installing proper insulation so you can avoid:

  • Carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Moisture problems and mold
  • Fire hazards from lighting

1. Be sure to conduct carbon monoxide tests on appliances before insulating and air sealing your home, especially in homes with natural gas. On a recent home energy audit, Washington Energy’s home performance team discovered unseen carbon monoxide coming from an old gas water heater. With a drafty house, and the water heater in the basement, it wasn’t enough gas to trip the CO detector in the main part of the house. However had the homeowner installed full insulation and air sealed the house without knowing, they may have locked in that gas and exposed their family to high levels of carbon monoxide.

2. Prevent moisture problems by letting your house breathe. In the previous article we discussed the relationship between your home and indoor air quality, and we highlighted the need to seal the penetrations bringing unwanted air through your home. But did you know that you can overseal? Most older Seattle homes don’t need to worry about this, but if you have new construction or if you are putting in your own insulation, this is important to consider.

New construction (less than 20 yrs old) has been built tighter – with fewer penetrations than older homes. These homes may actually need added ventilation installed when you insulate, to ensure healthy air inside the home.

To make sure your house is breathing properly, start by ensuring that bath fans are vented directly to the outside. Then when insulating, baffle the soffits! It may sound like pirate-speak but it’s important to keep your vents under the eaves of the roof free and clear for air transfer In layman’s terms: the eave vents are called soffits. Baffles, which are foam or cardboard pieces, fit around the inside of the soffit to keep the insulation from clogging up the vent. If insulation blocks the soffit vents the heat and moisture rising up through your house toward the attic, cannot escape. This will result in condensation forming in the attic and can eventually soak or ruin your insulation plus potentially affect your roof shingles. But most importantly, it can create the environment for mold and mildew to grow.

A licensed insulation contractor will know where and how much venting will be enough, and how to baffle a soffit too.

3. Insulation and can lights may not mix well. If you have recessed “can” lights, those spotlights commonly built into the ceiling, you may not know that some of them are rated to be surrounded by insulation and some are a fire hazard if they are surrounded by insulation. Inside the light fixture look for the rating stamp IC (insulation contact). IC lamps can contact your insulation safely. If you do not see IC, keep insulation 3 inches away from the light fixture and use a wood or metal barrier to ensure they don’t touch. Consult the manufacturer of the lamps or an electrician, if you have questions about safe installation. There are also specialized boxes that can go over non-IC rated cans so you can air seal the cans without making them a fire hazard. To ensure your cable, wiring and insulation are an appropriate match, please research carefully before installing them yourself.

And one final tip. If you are going to invest in adding insulation, for just a small amount more a home performance contractor can add duct sealing and duct insulation. They will carefully seal the joints in exposed portions of your duct system and then insulate around the ducts. This works to ensure that the heat travelling in your ducts gets to the rooms you need it in. When combined with insulation and air sealing, these three measures can improve home comfort and reduce energy costs by up to 30%.

Washington Energy Services provides home comfort solutions including home energy audits, insulation, air sealing and duct sealing. Washington Energy has been serving Western Washington homes with energy efficient home improvement since 1957. Call for an appointment at 800-398-4663 to learn more.

 

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Home energy audits: how well is your home performing for you?

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Every hole, crack, electric outlet, window, door, and insulation (or lack of), contributes to air leaking from your home. Knowing exactly where and how much energy is leaving your home can be extremely beneficial in deciding where to improve first and a home energy audit can do just this. So we asked the expert Craig V. Olson, Home Performance Manager and auditor, to fill us in on the ins and outs of home energy audits.

Craig, what exactly is a home energy audit?

“A home energy audit is a comprehensive assessment that looks at your house as system. The home has many variables that affect its performance: number of occupants in the home, the heating system, the thermal boundary and many other factors that affect the comfort, safety and efficiency of the home.  By looking at all of these factors at once, an audit can determine why a home isn’t using energy optimally (aka home performance) and an auditor will prescribe the most economical and beneficial recommendations for the home.”

What type of symptoms would a home have that may indicate that they should get an energy audit?

“There are many.  Hot or cold rooms, occupants suffering from allergies, headaches, asthma or frequent colds, high utility bills, condensation on windows, drafty rooms, uncomfortable living conditions.  If you having any comfort, efficiency or health concerns with your home you should get an energy audit.”

Are all energy audits done the same?

“One of the most important aspects that are often missed is the test out.  If you are willing to invest in your home’s comfort and efficiency you deserve to know the work was done correctly. We come in after the work is done and retest the home to ensure that everything that was agreed upon to improve the home was done to BPI standards, the independent governing body of home performance.”

 

How has the technology changed over the years?

“Technology is what is making this new home performance industry possible.  For example, in the past when someone had a room that wouldn’t warm up, the only solution contractors provided was to put more hot air into the room by over sizing heating equipment or adding more heating runs. Auditors now use very complex and expensive testing equipment in order to properly assess the home.  One of the favorites is the thermal image camera that looks at heat signatures to find missing insulation or air sealing opportunities.”

How long do they take?

“An audit approximately takes 2 hours depending on the size and complexity of the home.  It is important to have the homeowner present for the audit so the advisor can properly diagnose the problems the homeowner is facing.”

 Are energy audits worth the money?

“That depends on the audit!  An audit done correctly is an amazing asset for a homeowner. A proper home energy audit starts with an in-depth homeowner interview to identify their main concerns and experience in the home.  Then a thorough walkthrough of the home both inside and out will give the auditor a good layout idea of the home and efficiency concerns.  A good audit will then test the safety and efficiency of the homes combustion appliances as well as check the attic and/or crawlspace for insulation levels and air sealing opportunities.  Finally a good audit will conduct a blower door test to measure your current air leakage levels.  The auditor then schedules a time to revisit the home to deliver the report and recommendations.  The final important piece of a good energy audit is a “test-out” after recommended work is completed.  A test-out means that we retest the home to ensure installed measure where done correctly and safely.”

Why not simply skip the energy audit and go right into improvements?

“It’s similar to a doctor looking at your body as a system when you go in for a physical.  They check vitals, but also look at family genetics, personal habits and other quantitative and qualitative tests to determine your health and if there are any needed treatments to keep your body as healthy as possible. You wouldn’t jump into surgeries before getting an accurate assessment first. When homeowners do know which improvements to make, the audit can prioritize which ones will provide the most comfort improvement for the buck.”

How much are home energy audits?

“At Washington Energy Services a home energy audit costs $399.  However during the fall and winter season we are running a special for $199 for a comprehensive home energy audit. Also, if the customer implements the auditor’s recommendations, WESCO will reimburse the price of the audit off the recommended install.”

Overall, getting a home energy audit is the first step in making your home perform better. The better you know what’s going on, the smarter decision you can make.

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Maximum cooling

Posted On: Filed Under: Cooling, Air conditioning No Comments on Maximum cooling

Below are simple actions you can take to help prevent any system breakdowns during the hot days of Summer!

Colling conservation

 

    • To comfortably cool your home, your heat pump or air conditioner must remove both heat and humidity. Don’t turn your system off even though you will be away all day. On a hot day, your system may have to operate between 8 to 12 hours to reduce the temperature in your home to a normal comfort level.

 

  • Keep windows closed after sundown. While the outdoor temperature at night may be lower than indoors, the air is generally loaded with moisture which is soaked up by furniture, carpets, and fabrics. This moisture must be removed when you restart your system.

 

 

  • The hotter the outside temperature, the greater the load on your system. Therefore do not be alarmed when your system continues to run after the sun has set on a hot day. Heat is stored in your outside walls during the day and will continue to flow into your home for several hours after sunset.

 

 

  • Use your kitchen exhaust fan when cooking. One surface burner on HIGH requires one ton of cooling.

 

 

  • Turn on your bathroom exhaust fan while showering to remove humidity. However, exhaust fans should not be run excessively. It would decrease efficiency by removing conditioned air.

 

 

  • You can also help your system in the summer by closing drapes or blinds and by lowering awnings on windows that get direct sunlight.

 


Coil care

    • Keep the outdoor unit free of loose snow, foliage, grass clippings, leaves, paper, and any other material which could restrict the proper air flow in and out of the unit.

 

  • The coil may be vacuumed to remove any debris from between the fins. However, don’t knock ice off the outdoor unit’s coil surface following an ice or severe snowstorm. The blows could mash the coil fins shut (blocking air passage), or break the refrigerant tubing allowing the refrigerant to escape.

 

 

  • If the coil becomes excessively dirty, turn the main disconnect switch to OFF and wash the coil with your garden hose. Avoid getting water into the fan motor and control box. Flush dirt from base pan after cleaning the coil.

 

Filter care

    • Inspect the air filter(s) at least once a month. If they are dirty, wash reusable filters with a mild detergent per manufacturer’s recommendations.

 

  • Replace disposable filters with new filters.

 

 

  • Install the clean filters with “air flow” arrow in the same direction as the air flow in your duct. Filters should be clean to assure maximum efficiency and adequate air circulation.

 

 

  • Drapes, furniture or other obstructions blocking your supply and return air grilles will also decrease efficiency.

 

Annual maintenance

A periodic inspection, cleaning, lubrication and adjustment of your heat pump or air conditioner is recommended.

The Owner/user should not attempt to disassemble the equipment nor perform the periodic maintenance unless they are experienced and qualified to do so.

To schedule your systems annual maintenance call us today at 1-800-398-HOME (4663) and check out our Guardian Maintenance options.

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