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Found 13 results

  1. If you’re not careful, you can end up wasting a lot of money each day on heating your home. On average, most households in the United States spend roughly $2,200 per year on utility bills. You could reduce your costs by ensuring that you avoid certain wasteful practices that are probably causing your heating bill to skyrocket. Setting Your Thermostat Wrong Many people set their thermostat for a bit higher than they really need to. Decreasing the temperature in your home by a couple degrees won’t be that noticeable and it will save you a tremendous amount of money. You should also be sure to program your thermostat so you’re not heating your home excessively when there’s nobody home. Many newer models even go a step further by learning your preferred temperature and defaulting into an energy saving mode during certain times. Changing Air Filters Infrequently It’s important to remember to change the air filters in your HVAC system regularly. When your heater runs, the air filter’s job is to pick up particles that flow through it. As time goes on, these particles will begin to build up and clog the air filter. When this happens, the unit has to use a lot more energy to heat your home. A clean air filter ensures that your HVAC system is functioning properly and running efficiently. It’s best to clean air filters regularly and replace them every three months. If you feel like you might forget, be sure to set a reminder to help yourself remember to call a heating repair service. Poorly Preparing Your Home for Colder Weather Having a great heating system is one thing, but ensuring the heat stays in your home is another. Before the cold weather hits, you should check for drafts and other problems within your home that might cause heat to escape. For instance, insulating your ceiling can ensure that no heat escapes. This alone will pay for itself in no time, especially if your roof is poorly insulated to begin with. You should also check your windows and doors to ensure all cracks are sealed and no air is leaking through. Heat will escape through these cracks and cause you to use more heat. Additionally, you should ensure that your chimney is sealed appropriately if you aren’t going to be using it. This is another area that heat often escapes from. Heating your home can be an expensive endeavor, but it doesn’t have to be so costly. Doing these three things during the winter months can lower your heating costs tremendously. If you’re doing these things and your heating system still doesn’t seem to be heating your home efficiently, be sure to contact a heating repair service. They will help you determine whether or not your heater needs to be fixed or replaced completely.
  2. The earth is currently going through a lot of challenges. This includes global warming, extreme weather, pollution and more. If these challenges are to be overcome, it’s going to require action from everyone. This certainly includes homeowners. There are steps you can take as a homeowner to lessen your impact on the environment. Below are four strategies for making your home more energy efficient. Upgrade Your HVAC System One of the biggest drains on your energy efficiency is your heating, ventilation and cooling system, also known as an HVAC system for short. According to Derek Sawyers Smart Energy Heating & Air, your system should probably be upgraded if it’s older than 15 years. Newer HVAC systems run much more efficiently. This means increased energy efficiency and lower utility bills every month. Upgrade Your Light Bulbs Another idea you should consider to increase your home’s energy efficiency is upgrading your light bulbs. Traditional incandescent light bulbs run very hot. This means they use a lot of energy and also wear out much faster as well. Newer compact fluorescent bulbs, on the other hand, run much cooler when producing the same amount of light as incandescent bulbs. According to the US Department of Energy, compact fluorescent lights use 25 to 35 percent of the energy that incandescent lights do. They last significantly longer as well. Upgrade Your Windows Another source of energy inefficiency in your house could be your windows. Older windows especially tend to leak a lot of air. This means that your furnace will have run much harder to keep your home heated during the winter. It also means your air conditioner will have to work much harder to keep your home cool during the summer. If your windows are significantly old, consider upgrading them to more energy efficient windows. Program Your Thermostat Many people run their HVAC system too often. This wastes energy and results in high utility bills. Instead of running your system all the time, program your thermostat so the heat or air only runs when it’s needed. You, for example, don’t need to run your air conditioner as much when you’re at work and your kids are at school. The carbon footprint of homes certainly has an adverse effect on the environment. If everyone took the steps outlined above, however, some of that negative impact could be curbed. Don’t stop here. There are plenty of more strategies you can use to increase your home’s energy efficiency.
  3. Keeping your home cool during the summer can be challenging and costly during heat waves. All of that summer heat tends to build up inside your home and make it feel like an oven. You can employ some simple techniques to make your home more comfortable this summer. Another benefit is that you can also make your home more energy efficient. Service Your HVAC Your HVAC unit is like any other appliance in your home. If it isn’t cared for properly, it can start to experience problems. Consider using a company like Custom Comfort to give your HVAC unit a checkup. This will ensure that your AC can function in the most energy efficient manner possible when you do decide to use it. Set Your Thermostat Allowing your home to become too warm can make your AC less efficient. This is because it has to work that much harder to cool your house down to the proper temperature. Set your thermostat to a more consistent temperature. This will prevent your AC from having to work double time. Replace Drafty Windows Warm air leaking into your home can cause the temperature to start to rise. Those drafty windows are letting in a lot of hot air during the summer months. Replace them with more energy efficient models so that you can cut down on the air exchange in your home. Beef up the Insulation Add insulation into the attic, crawlspace, and above the garage of your home. You may want to consider adding insulation into your walls if you have an older home. This will increase the overall energy efficiency of your house. You may be surprised at how comfortable your home can be when it’s properly insulated. Use Natural Cooling Methods One of the more overlooked solutions to increasing the energy efficiency of your home is to use free methods of cooling it. Open up those new windows at night to let in cool air and release the warm air. You may want to use a window fan to facilitate the air exchange. A fan is much more cost effective than running the AC. There are other ways that you can make your home more energy efficient. Painting it a lighter color or replacing the roof with a lighter shingle also help. Adding landscaping that provides a little bit of cover is another solution. You may want to use several methods so that you can reap the most energy efficiency.
  4. The heat of the summer can start to get you down. You may be relying on your air conditioning to see you through it. This can start to add up for your monthly expenses. Here are some ways that you can stay cool and minimize your electric bill. Eliminate Unnecessary Heat Generation Cook your food during the cooler parts of the day. Running your oven can heat up your whole house. Either prepare your food ahead of time or invest in cool food options during those really hot days. Do your laundry at night so that you aren’t generating any more heat than is necessary. Service Your Air Conditioner Have your air conditioner serviced on a yearly basis. Companies like Alabama Climate Control will be able to get your unit in top operating condition. Another thing to keep it running efficiently is to change out the filters each month. An air conditioner that is more efficient can save on the overall energy consumption. Program Your Thermostat Set your thermostat so that your home doesn’t get too warm. This can cause your unit to be less efficient if it has to work overtime to bring your home down to temperature. You can save some money by setting it to a point that isn’t too cool. Having a programmable thermostat can also make your home more energy efficient. Use Window Treatments to Advantage Block out those rays from the sun. They will only cause your home to heat up quickly. Open up your windows once the sun has gone down for the day to use some natural air conditioning. Using your windows at night can dramatically reduce your electric bill from the air conditioning. Circulate the Air Fans are a great way to circulate the cooler air in your home. The point is to keep you comfortable without having to employ more costly measures. Set up window fans so that you can more quickly cool your home at night. Trap that cooler air inside so that your air conditioner doesn’t have to work as hard during the day. You can enjoy a cooler home that doesn’t eat into your budget just by trying out a few simple things. Be mindful of how much heat you generate in your home each day. Plan ahead accordingly to take the outside temperature into consideration. Use nighttime cooling to enable your home to get back down to the right temperature so that you can stay cool.
  5. In the summer, air conditioning is essential in creating a comfortable indoor environment for you and your family. When it’s hot and humid outside, you can crank up your home’s air conditioning to stay cool. According to the Department of Energy (DOE), however, heating and cooling accounts for nearly half of the average U.S. Home’s energy usage. Thankfully, you can stay cool this summer without spending a fortune on energy bills by following some simple steps. Change the Air Filter One of the easiest ways to keep your home’s air conditioning working efficiently is to change the filter every 60 to 90 days. The filter is designed to catch dust and dirt while still allowing air to pass through. As this debris accumulates, however, it can restrict the flow of air and force your system to work harder. Check Condenser Coil The condenser coil is responsible for extracting heat from inside your home. When it’s clogged, the system won’t be able to run efficiently, thus raising your home’s energy usage. While you can often remove superficial dirt and debris by spraying your system’s condenser coil with a garden hose, you’ll need the services of a professional HVAC company like Alabama Climate Control to clean a severely clogged coil. Inspect Ducts When was the last time that you inspected the ducts in your air conditioning system? If they are damaged with visible holes or tears, cooled air will escape and reduce the overall efficiency of your system. Another problem with ducts is a lack of insulation. A healthy air conditioning system should have well-insulated ducts to minimize loss of thermal energy. Programming Your Thermostat You can also save money on cooling costs this summer by programming your thermostat. If there’s no one occupying your home during the day, for example, you can set the temperature higher to save energy. And when family members return in the evening, you can set the temperature lower to create a comfortable environment. Don’t Block Vents Finally, check the air vents in your home to ensure they aren’t blocked. A large sofa or dresser can restrict airflow and reduce your system’s efficiency. All vents should be accessible and unobstructed for maximum performance. You don’t have to sacrifice comfort for low utility bills this summer. The five tips described here can improve the efficiency of your home’s air conditioning.
  6. Depending on where you live, winter months will make for the coldest part of the year. This is why you should take measures to ensure that you and your family are warm and comfortable during this season. However, in a world where environmental conservation has become an important topic, you may want to consider ways of keeping your home green. Even as you look for ways to heat your home, it is vital that they help to conserve energy and have minimal negative impact on the environment. Proper Maintenance of Your Heating System Proper maintenance of your furnace and HVAC system will go a long way in making sure that they run efficiently. This will not only help in lowering your energy bills but also give you the assurance that your home will be warm and comfortable in winter. For the best repair and maintenance services, you should consider working with a company such as Bryant Air Conditioning, Heating, Electrical & Plumbing. Such experts will not only inspect and repair your heating system but also the plumbing and electrical systems in your home. In this way, you will not have to worry about making the repairs during the cold season. Install a Programmable Thermostat Installing a programmable thermostat is an eco-friendly way of keeping your home warm in winter. This thermostat will allow you to enter a high and low temperature. Whenever you are not at home and temperatures in your home fall below the lower temperature, the thermostat will turn on your heating system. Once temperatures reach the maximum you had set, the unit will turn off. This way, you will have your furnace running constantly while making significant savings on your energy bill. Green Solutions for Heating Your Home Instead of depending on electricity as the sole source of energy for heating your home, you should consider investing in renewable sources of energy. Some of the options you can explore include geothermal heating, solar energy and masonry heating. These green solutions will be efficient in helping to create a comfortable environment in your home. Insulate Your Home Making your home energy-efficient will require that you ensure that heat is not lost during this cold season. Installing window covers, sealing insulation gaps, closing off unused rooms and insulating your attic will lower your energy costs. This is because you will prevent air leaks in your home, reducing the amount of work that your furnace has to do in an effort to keep the space warm. There are many more sustainable ways to keep your home green in winter. For instance, regular roof inspections and repairs will help to keep your home warm in winter.
  7. If you are like a lot of people, you might just turn your air conditioner on when you need it without really putting much thought into its efficiency. However, focusing on air conditioning efficiency is smart for a few reasons. These are some tips that can help you do so. Have Your Air Conditioning System Professionally Installed If you are having a new air conditioning system installed in your home, it is not a good idea to try to do it yourself. Even though you might be tempted to try to figure out how to do it on your own so that you won't have to hire someone, you'll probably want to call a company like A-1 American Services to do it for you. Then, you can ensure that your system is installed properly so that you can avoid future problems. Create "Zones" in Your Home If you have a larger home with a fair amount of square footage, you may want to consider creating "zones" in your home. For example, you may want to cool your bedrooms separately from the rest of your home. Then, you can keep the more commonly used areas of the home nice and cool without wasting money on cooling other parts of the house that won't be used as often. Install a Programmable Thermostat Installing a programmable thermostat can be a wonderful decision for just about any family. With this type of thermostat, you can set your thermostat so that it suits you and your family's lives. For example, if you and your family members are gone all day at work and school, you can adjust your system so that it only turns on right before your family members get home. This can help you greatly reduce your cooling bills, since you'll only be cooling the home when there are people there rather than cooling a completely empty house. Keep Your System Properly Maintained Springing for regular system maintenance for your air conditioner is important. Even though you might want to skip an appointment if your system seems to be working properly, it's not a good idea to do so. Instead, keep it maintained so that you can ensure that it operates properly and to prevent future issues. If you are someone who is concerned about wasting energy, then you probably know how important it is to ensure that your air conditioning system is as energy efficient as possible. Additionally, working to achieve maximum energy efficiency with your system can also help your system last much longer with the need for fewer repairs. Fortunately, giving these four tips a try can help you make your system as energy efficient as possible.
  8. Making sure that your air conditioning system works properly is probably very important to you and your family during the summer months. If you are concerned about your system or if you want to ensure that it works as effectively as possible, however, you shouldn't worry. Instead, follow these tips to get the most out of your air conditioner when dealing with the summer heat. Block Out the Sun First of all, if you have the sun shining into your home on a hot, sunny day, it can make the temperatures rise in the house and can make your air conditioning system work that much harder. To give your air conditioner a fighting chance at keeping your home cool and to reduce your cooling bills, it's a good idea to cover up your windows during the daytime so that you can block the sun out. Luckily, there are plenty of light-blocking shades available on the market that can help. Have Your Air Conditioner Serviced If you have not hired a company like A-1 American Services to service your air conditioner yet this year, it's a good idea to do so. By hiring a technician to come out now, you can determine if there are any issues with your system. Then, you can ensure that it's working as it is supposed to. This can help prevent system failures on the hottest days of the year, can help your system last longer and can help you prevent having to pay high repair bills later on. Change Your Filters Regularly If you aren't in the habit of changing your HVAC system's air filters each and every month, now is the time to get in the habit of doing so. Failing to change your filters can pose a problem because it can prevent your system from being able to do its job properly. It can also affect your indoor air quality. Luckily, these filters are usually pretty affordable to purchase and are typically pretty easy to change, so swapping them out monthly shouldn't be too much of a challenge. Set Your Thermostat Properly Using a programmable thermostat so that you aren't cooling an empty home and setting your system to the right temperature can help your unit run more efficiently. Then, you can keep your home cool without driving up your cooling bills too much. It's also a good idea to leave your system alone once it's programmed rather than adjusting it back and forth if you want to maintain a steady, comfortable temperature. If you are like most people, you probably really rely on your air conditioning system to keep you and your family nice and cool during the hot summer months. However, you might be concerned that your air conditioner is not really working as it should be. Luckily, following these tips can help you get more out of your system.
  9. Going completely green is a feat that few people can actually accomplish - especially those with busy lives and/ or families. But there are always smaller steps that anyone can take to live a greener lifestyle. While you may not be ready to live in a 300 square foot tiny home, there are a number of relatively simple and steps you can take to leave a lower carbon footprint - and sometimes even save some money in the process. Here are 4 green home improvements you can do yourself. Composting Landfills in North America are filling up and closing down. Nearly 1/3 of all landfill waste is composed of compostable materials. Composting allows you to create a thick, nutrient-rich humus for your lawn and garden while diverting as much as 30% of household waste. Not only does composting offer a natural alternative to chemical fertilizers, but microscopic organisms in compost help aerate the soil and ward off plant disease. Lay Synthetic Grass With water prices skyrocketing, not only will this upgrade help you go green, it will save you a lot of green - and manpower. Eco-friendly synthetic grass requires no water, no mowing and stays green for years. No more mowing the lawn every week in the summer or having to pay someone else to do it. With synthetic grass, you can use your water and your compost on a beautiful garden instead of your lawn. Install Solar Panels Solar panel systems can be purchased for as little as a few thousand dollars but will save you significantly on your monthly energy bill. For around $10,000, you can purchase a system that could allow you to go off-grid entirely. If you can’t go for 10k, solar power companies like Renogy usually have a wide range of solar kits at varying prices and sizes to fit any budget. Today's solar energy panels are easy to install and can be up and running in an hour or less. Upgrade your thermostat Not only are today's thermostats more intuitive, they are also far more sensitive to air temperatures. A decade ago, thermostats would detect when the air temperature rose or dropped about 8 degrees above or below where the temperature was set at to heat or cool the house about 8 - 10 degrees above or below the set temperature. This meant people regularly turned their heat up to high to stay warm or the air too low to stay cool. Today's thermostats are capable of regulating heating and cooling systems to stay constantly within a few degrees, so you can set your temp where you are comfortable and keep it there. Going green doesn't have to cost a fortune, nor does it have to be a significant hassle. In fact, some eco-friendly products are actually superior to their more harmful counterparts. Where green products were once generally more expensive than the more harmful products, now green solutions will often save you green.
  10. As the weather turns warm and thermostats get turned down, many people will see a spike in their electric bills. Fortunately, there are a lot of options to make your house more energy-efficient. From simple steps that can be done in minutes to more intensive projects that may require hiring a professional, these tips can help lower your energy costs and make your home more environmentally friendly. Install Ceiling Fans Ceiling fans can drop the temperature of a room up to four degrees without using much electricity, but a four degree difference in your thermostat can lead to a huge difference in your electric bill. A window fan can also be used to cool a room much more efficiently than turning on the air conditioning, especially in early mornings and later evenings. Maintain the Air Conditioner If your air conditioner is in good condition, it will run more efficiently. Change the air filters regularly, vacuum and clean dust out of registers and vents, and clean around the exterior unit to ensure smooth airflow and not overwork the unit. It's also a good idea to have it professionally serviced once a year to troubleshoot any repairs and make sure it is running at peak condition. Install a Programmable Thermostat When you aren't home, don't keep the thermostat set low. If you are going to be gone at the same time every day, you can program the thermostat to raise while you are gone, then program it to lower to your preferred temperature about thirty minutes before you come home. This way you don't need to worry about re-setting your thermostat every day or forgetting to raise the temperature before you leave. Repair or Replace Old Windows Old windows can leak, and while the drafts in the winter are noticeable, they let a lot of warm air in in the summer, too. Caulking or weather-stripping around frames and leaky areas can help, but if your windows are old or single-paned, it may be worth it to replace them to a more efficient style of window. Have Your Home Insulated Insulating your home can make a huge difference in your home's energy efficiency. If your home is older, your home may be lacking insulation, or it may have lost its effectiveness. Having Reflective Optimizing Insulation installed by Parsons Construction Group in attics can reduce energy bills drastically and make your home significantly more efficient all year and has a lifetime performance guarantee. As the mercury creeps up, don't let your electric bill follow suit. Follow these tips to make your home more energy efficient to save money without sacrificing comfort.
  11. Keep your office warm without seeing the bill skyrocket. It takes only a few, small changes to keep the heat in and keep the energy usage down. Here are several energy-efficient tips to preserve the warmth in your office. Lower Your Thermostat a Few Degrees You save energy with every one or two degrees you turn down. Make adjustments whenever you feel the weather change throughout the day. Maintain warm room temperatures within 60 to 70 degrees. At the end of the month, you will save at least a few dollars on your heating bill. Also, invest in a model that switches on and off automatically so that it does not run endlessly. Invest in Tote Heaters To store liquids and chemicals, use a tote heater that is known for its energy efficiency. Preserve the heat while keeping your liquids warm for hours. If the tote works right, you will not have to adjust the thermostat too high. The Powerblanket brand states that it is important to look for a safe and efficient heater. You cannot use your tote on a heater that overheats and smokes easily. Also, find a product that fits snugly around the heater and is made of a strong, long-lasting material. Check the Filter Replace the filter in your heater at least once a year. Dirt prevents the flow of air into the heater and decreases its efficiency. Also, maintain the furnace so that all of its parts work properly. Look for Leaks Keep the heat in the room by plugging up the leaks. Look for cracks and holes around the doors and windows. Consider sealing the leaks with caulk that is used in home construction. Buy Energy Efficient Appliances Replace your old appliances with new ones that have the Energy Star labels. Solar heaters are popular devices that keep the home powered all day at no cost. Once you start using your new machine, notice significant increases in your monthly savings. If the heating bill costs $1,000, you could cut it in half and save money for more important household needs. There are many ways to keep your energy usage down in your office. One option is to buy a brand-new appliance that is built for convenience and energy efficiency. Another option is to keep the temperature down on the thermostat. Make as many adjustments as you need to maintain optimal warmth and comfort while you work.
  12. These five energy efficient tips will keep your office warm and your bills low this winter. Most of these tips are incredibly simple to implement and should become annual best practices for your office. Adjust the Thermostat Keep the office cooler at night when no one is there working. Raise the temperature a few hours before people arrive so they are able to work in a pleasant environment straight away. Maintain the temperature at a comfortable level that is neither too hot nor too cold for most people. Boiler and Heater Maintenance One of the most energy efficient ways to keep the office warm is to provide routine maintenance on your boiler and heating systems. This will help ensure this equipment is operating efficiently and safely. If you find that you require a new system or an upgrade, many companies such as Nationwide Boiler provide new and reconditioned equipment for any budget and an ideal solution to optimize energy efficiency. Close Doors and Windows It is important that you keep all windows and doors closed whenever possible. Front doors can often become a problem area as snow and debris becomes stuck in the entryway. Be sure to routinely remove snow and debris from the most commonly used doors to prevent this scenario. And, inform all employees that all windows and doors must remained closed. Natural Sunlight One of the least expensive and most effective energy efficient ways to keep your office warm this winter is to use natural sunlight to your advantage. You can start by opening all shades and curtains during daylight hours. Also, remove dark carpeting and paint the walls a light color that will more easily reflect natural light. If it is within you budget, you might also consider skylights and removing walls to create a more open floor plan so that both light and heat can more freely move about the office. Seal Windows and Doors It is also essential to ensure all your doors and windows are sealed properly. A significant percentage of heat is lost due to poorly insulated and sealed windows and doors. Be sure to check for leaks and consider adding more insulation. This will help to keep out harsh and bitterly cold winds and keep in the lovely comforting warm air. Once you implement these energy efficient tips, your office will be a more pleasant environment and your company will save a significant amount of money. And, by teaching these practices to your employees, they can implement the same practices at home to save money on their own.
  13. When the weather cools down, the inside of homes starts heating up. At least, that's how it's supposed to be. If the only thing that seems to be getting hotter in your home is your heating bill, it might be time to take a look around and see where you can make room for more energy efficient heating. Is Your Home Letting Heat Escape? No matter how powerful your heating system is, your home is still cold if all that heat keeps escaping. Odds are good your home isn't as heat-efficient as you think; leaky walls, ceilings, floors, doors and windows all allow heat to escape. Caulk, foam or weather-stripping can be used, depending on location, to secure any suspected leaks. Is Your Furnace Working Like It Should? If you use a furnace to heat your home, make sure it's in good working repair. A faulty, dirty or old furnace isn't just a possible culprit of poor home heating, it can also be a danger to the home via fires or gas leaks. Companies like Customs Services have professional furnace repair technicians available to review the condition and safety of a furnace and provides any necessary repairs and tips to keep your furnace working well all winter long. Are You Using Solar Heating? The sun is an always-on source of heat that never breaks down. South-facing windows let in warm sunlight, and interior surfaces such as concrete floors and plaster or brick walls absorb the heat and gradually release it during the evenings. If such modifications aren't possible, just apply thick curtains to your windows and leave them open during the day and shut them at night. Warmth comes in and doesn't blow back out. Are You Losing Heat from Mini-Drafts? If you have a mail slot, a pet door or just a large gap under an exterior door, you're losing heat in mini-drafts. Line door flaps leading to the outside with thick fabric, like wool or fleece, to prevent this. Door gaps are still best handled by an old-fashioned "sausage dog", or wrapped tube of fabric that blocks the gap. It's easy to make your own with some tights and old socks, if desired. While major modifications are one way to approach getting huge energy savings and a warmer home in winter, don't feel like you need a renovation to stay cozy. Simple tricks and awareness of how your home collects and retains heat go a long way to keeping the cold outside where it belongs.