Advantages of Central Air Conditioners

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Central air conditioning and heating systems are taking over the old fashioned window units. It’s because central air has a vent that is going to each room in the house, office, or building. A central air conditioning system offers several benefits over conventional air conditioning systems. Doubtlessly, central air is one of the most effective and good ways to flow cool air in the home.

Centralized units send cool air straight through air ducts or vents located in each and every area. Each and every room could be cooled rather than cooling only one room. Ambient air is drawn into the air handler unit from every room through return-air ducts. The system filters the air in which goes through it, getting rid of airborne particles, like lint, and allergens, like dust, pollen and pet dander. Cleaned air will then be re-routed back to the rooms via a different ductwork system. These systems could even catch the most microscopic pollutants. Certainly, costlier filters could capture more pollutants and increase the quality of air in your house.

But the advantages don’t end there. The following are other advantages that central air conditioners have over window air conditioning systems.

  • Central air units run considerably quieter than window units. Using a window unit there is considerable noise pollution when the machine is turning on and off unlike the central one.
  • Centralized aircons have improved appearance as window models stick out like sore thumbs. Unless you want your home to have a utilitarian look, central air conditioning is the best option for aesthetics.
  • The system doesn’t occupy any inside space and keeps the home looking modern and updated.
  • They are really easy to run. Whether there’s a single zone or multiple zones, the system is conveniently controlled by a simple system that can be programmed to run at certain times and temperatures.
  • The window models available on store shelves typically have less than a one-year warranty, while the warranties of central units usually last several years. Most installers provide consistent servicing designed to keep your system running effectively and efficiently all through the year.

Before you decide whether or not to install this, it is just a good option to check on with a contractor because this is not a cheap investment. They could generate a heating plan based on the details of your house. This will give you the information you need to choose whether it is your very best choice.

5 Benefits of HVAC Duct Cleaning


It’s easy to disregard the air ducts at your residence. After all, you cannot view them. But these hidden systems are a very crucial section of your house. Just like other parts of your house, they must be cleaned. Duct cleaning have several advantages.

1. Duct cleaning can improve your health. Air duct cleaning is important to healthy and clean indoor air. Allergens (pollen, pet dander, hair, etc.), dust and debris and toxins (mold, mildew, mouse droppings, etc.) are consistently found in home HVAC systems. If somebody residing in your home already is suffering from allergies or asthma, air duct cleaning may help provide a healthy environment for asthma and allergy victims. Typical cleaning has been confirmed to reduce the amount of allergens and pollutants present in your house, in the end reducing the chances for allergies as well as other serious illness.

2. Duct cleaning can assist your HVAC system goes longer. When grime and dirt get trapped in your heating and cooling system, they could at some point cause it to break down. Regular duct cleaning may help extend the life of heat exchangers, fans and cooling coils, assisting you to avoid pricey repairs down the road. Keeping your HVAC system clean does mean that it doesn’t have to function as hard to heat and cool your home, which can also help it last longer.

3. Duct cleaning delivers energy savings. When the system is slow, there’s a chance you will get higher power bills at the end of the month. There’s no question, if the machine is working out from order, it’s going to lose its energy. By on-time servicing of the unit, you will be able to save much more than just the HVAC system. You’ll save money that’s wasted through extra electricity bills.

4. HVAC functions at an optimum performance. When the unit is dirty from the inside, all its components, just like net, filter and exhausts are covered in dust. This decelerates the unit and there is a decrease in the efficiency of the system. If the system gets slow, it shows that the unit is making an effort to deliver less. Provided that the servicing and cleaning of the system is carried out regularly, it’s going to work at its the best possible efficiency.

5. Prevent nasty odors. A musty or “moist” odor at home often means that mold and/or mildew is lurking in your air ducts. Air fresheners, scented candles or incense is only going to mask dirty air for a short while. Professional cleaning can remove the smells almost totally in a very short time.

Boiler Maintenance: Top Tips

Boilers are the most popular way to keep homes and business warm and with a constant supply of hot water. Yet machinery like boilers have a lot of parts which will make the boiler work and to keep it working in tip top condition you need to regularly maintain it. There is a lot to be said for preventative maintenance and it can save you lots of money in the long run.

No-one likes a faulty system which explains why it is important that you take constant care of your heating, regardless of the weather. Lots of people have got the tendency to simply disregard the boiler system after the set up. Whether your boiler is a new or old machine, the best attention and care can help you keep it running in the best condition and ensure that you aren’t left facing any unpleasant surprises!

Regular Maintenance

Be sure the boiler manual is kept in a convenient location. Many individuals will lose or throw the manual for the boiler once it’s been installed. Yet, if you do find that you’re experiencing any difficulties later on, you will find that the manual may be highly good for troubleshooting the more common issues you are likely to experience.

Put in place a regular maintenance schedule. In case you actually want to make certain that boiler system is maintained in a full operational condition, you might like to look having a regular 12 monthly service. A professional service has the capacity to check every aspect of the boiler to make sure it is able to run successfully. Ideally, you need to have a boiler serviced every year before the cold weather arriving. Prevent the boiler from freezing. It is possible to prevent a boiler from freezing in the very low temperatures by leaving the heating on at a low range constantly. You will probably find this isn’t the most economical solution and thus you may want to look at other methods for preventing a boiler from freezing.

Resetting your Boiler

As mentioned above, many boilers come with several emergency shut-off safeguards. When one of these shut-offs is triggered, restarting your boiler is an easy matter, however, you must take into account that the shut-off was triggered for a reason.

Modern boilers have emergency shut off systems which will shut the boiler down if you experience something wrong. They also shut the boiler down if they’re tied to clocks and outdoor temperature therefore it doesn’t invariably mean there is a problem. A few of the explanations why a boiler makes use of the emergency shut-off might be something as simple as low water pressure.

It is essential that you won’t ever by hand override an emergency shut-off device without first finding and fixing the problem that triggered it. At times doing so doesn’t involve the help of a professional, but it is essential to recognize when assistance is needed. Issues that the average user should seek professional help for include leaking-whether from a pressure relief valve, the condensate tank, or the stack-repeatedly triggered shut-off devices, abnormally high stack temperatures, and insufficient heat despite an otherwise normally functioning boiler.

Gas Furnace Buying Guide

Gas furnaces are definitely a wonderful addition to your home. In fact, they are already becoming widely popular nowadays because of the great convenience they bring


Replacing the old furnace in your central heating system with a new, more efficient model can offset volatile energy prices. Money aside, today’s furnaces pollute less and boost comfort by producing heat more steadily than older furnaces. Gas is the most common heating fuel and this report focuses on gas furnaces.

To find out which brands of furnaces are the most and least reliable, check our brand reliability report from the Consumer Reports National Research Center.

What We Found

How do most people go about buying a furnace? First, they call contractors and ask for estimates. To prepare this report, we did too. More than 500 specialists in residential heating and air conditioning told us about their experiences in installing and maintaining heating equipment.

Size Matters
The furnace’s specifications should fit your needs. A furnace that’s too small won’t keep your house comfortable during extremely-cold weather.

Partly to avoid that possibility, the furnaces in most homes are larger than necessary. Initial cost is only one of the drawbacks of that strategy. A furnace that’s too large will cycle on and off more frequently. That puts more wear on its components, wastes energy, and might cause the temperature to vary uncomfortably. Also, a larger replacement furnace might require larger ducts. Without the right size ducts, airflow can be noisy.

To be sure of correct sizing and a proper installation, choose a reputable contractor who will take the time to calculate your heating needs according to an industry standard such as in “Manual J HVAC Residential Load Calculation” of the Air Conditioning Contractors of America. Such calculations take into account the climate and the size, design, and construction of your house. Once the furnace is installed, maintain it regularly according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Our survey helped to confirm this advice. When we asked about the most common reasons for service calls for furnaces, contractors cited human error, inadequate maintenance, for example, or improper installation, twice as often as defective equipment. Read our frequency of repair report for which brands or the most and least reliable.

Efficiency Also Matters
Gas is currently the most common heating fuel and most new central-heating systems use gas. How efficiently a furnace converts gas into heating energy is reflected in its annual fuel-utilization-efficiency (AFUE) rating, which is measured as a percentage. The higher the number, the more heat the furnace can wring from each therm of gas. Since efficient furnaces generate fewer emissions, environmental considerations might also influence your decision.

Furnaces have become more energy-efficient over the years. A gas furnace made in the early 1970s typically has an AFUE of about 65 percent. The lowest efficiency allowed by law for new gas furnaces is 78 percent, and some new models achieve 97 percent, near-total efficiency.

The price of a furnace generally rises in step with its fuel efficiency. A furnace with a 90 percent AFUE might cost $1,000 more than a similar size unit with an 80 percent AFUE. But you can often recoup that additional cost through lower fuel bills over the life of the furnace, especially in regions such as the Northeast and Midwest, where winters can be harsh. How quickly you recover the investment depends on more than just AFUE. The electricity to run furnaces with different AFUEs can vary significantly. The climate where you live, how well your home is insulated, and your local gas and electricity rates also affect payback times.

As you decide, insist that the contractor select models in a range of efficiencies and calculate the annual estimated operating cost of each model you’re considering, rather than simply estimating it. The contractor can complete those calculations by plugging information on each unit’s AFUE and electrical consumption, local utility rates, and characteristics of your home into one of several computer programs designed to easily calculate estimates. Make sure that the quotes also include the cost of any changes to venting required by any appliances in the home.

Other questions to ask the contractor: Is the model you’re considering fairly new, introduced, say, two years ago or less, and thus relatively untested? If it’s an older model, has the contractor noticed any reliability problems with it?

You can make your home more energy-efficient in several ways. Turn down the thermostat in winter; just two degrees cooler will save you money and reduce emissions by about 6 percent. You might not even feel the difference, especially at night or when you’re out of the house—a programmable thermostat can help here. Draw the curtains at night to block the chill from a cold window. Keep the windows covered on sunny days during the summer, and uncover them on sunny days during the winter to benefit from some free solar heating. Reduce heat loss from ducts by sealing leaks and, where feasible, insulating ducts.

Repair or Replace?
If your gas furnace falters or fails, a few simple procedures may save you the cost and trouble of seeking professional help:

• If you’re getting low airflow, check the air filter on the furnace; a clogged filter could cut airflow to a trickle.

• See if there are loose wires or a malfunction in the thermostat. For an electronic thermostat that runs on batteries, try changing them.

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How Much Does a New Furnace Cost

One of the major expenses homeowners have to be deal with is when it comes to the heating system. A new furnace, most especially, is more expensive than a washing machine with dryer or a new bathtub. But then again, installing this in your home will let you enjoy big savings going forward.


furnace installation

If you have an aging furnace in your house and you’re considering replacing it, you’re probably wondering how much does a new furnace cost. While it may be tempting to just call up a local contractor and replace your existing furnace with a new one that is nearly identical, if you do your homework you could end up saving a fortune in the long run.


Only Considering How Much Does a New Furnace Cost

If you went online and reviewed the prices for furnaces, you may be tempted to go with the cheapest furnace you can find. The problem is that there are many types of furnace systems, and the retail price of the furnace doesn’t always tell you the whole picture.

Types of Furnaces

There are many different methods that you can use to heat your home and the water you use every day.

  • Natural Gas – Natural gas heat sources, such as propane heaters, use natural gas as a fuel to heat the water or air that is used to heat your home. While the price of natural gas isn’t always the lowest of all fuels, it is the most efficient. Since you can obtain more BTU (heat energy) from less fuel, the higher price is offset by the amount of heat you can obtain per volume of natural gas.
  • Oil – Oil furnaces are the most common in the Northeastern U.S. because of the lack of easy access to natural gas. An oil heating system includes

Common Types of Home Insulation

It is a common misconception that insulation is just to help keep warm air in and cold air from a house. This may not be true, it is also just as important in opposite. Insulation can help keep your home’s temperature down during the warm months which can help on your utility expenses. Your air conditioner does not need to function as hard in a well-insulated home.

In picking home insulation, the most crucial aspect to consider is its R-value. This value is represented by a number – the higher the number, the far better the material is at maintaining heat. For homes in cold environments, an increased R-value helps keep your utility bills low by maximizing your energy efficiency. There are 4 varieties of insulation you should know about if wondering about your property;

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1) Spray Foam Installation: The spray foam insulation is comprised of a type of foaming agent plus a polymer one. In most cases sprayed into tiny cracks or spaces. This sort of insulation is ideal for the areas that don’t have a regular shape. If it is applied it comes in liquid form, yet in a small amount of time it turns into a solid mass.

2) Rigid Insulation: Rigid insulation is made up of boards made out of polystyrene. It’s good for insulating roofs, ceilings, foundation basement walls and where you are planning to get a thin layer of insulation with a high R-value. As opposed to one other kinds of insulation, rigid boards are incredibly flammable therefore it is important to use where you can cover with a fire protection layer like drywall.

3) Fiberglass Insulation: Fiberglass is among the most common insulation in the United States and is made use of in both residential and commercial buildings. Fiberglass is available in two various forms; batt and blanket. Batt insulation is comprised of rock wool or the fluffy fiberglass you imagine. It often comes in 4 to 8 foot lengths with a variety of different widths. Blanket insulation can be quite a lot like batt except it comes in continuous rolls. This makes for less waste yet is harder to deal with.

4) Loose-Fill Insulation: It is generally made of fiberglass, rock wool, or cellulose and also comes in small particles. It is installed by being blown in to the space utilizing a specific pneumatic blower. It is always good for putting insulation to existing areas, oddly shaped areas and around obstacles.

The Ideal Mobile Home Furnace

Should you own a mobile residence, may very well not be aware that you must have a special mobile home furnace. Don’t concern yourself, they are usually not any higher priced than a regular home furnace, they are simply made differently. You should be sure you buy the right furnace for your residence, or you will be having issues in the future for sure aside from the proven fact that it will cost you more.

First time everyone who is taking a look at this option should take the time to research the various brands of furnaces available before calling anyone to replace theirs. This happens because there are contractors that could benefit from you. As a result of unique location of furnaces in mobile homes, not to mention the tight spaces in which they are found, it is advisable to put in furnaces specifically created for mobile homes.

The ducting system, as a result of smaller available space, is of smaller proportions than in a regular house. Furnaces made for regular homes cannot be utilized in mobile homes, and if set up therein unknowingly, the result could be dangerous conditions. A sealed combustion vent system is made use of by mobile home furnaces. This is totally different from that utilized in ordinary furnaces.

The furnace needs to have the right temperature setting at all times. It needs to give you the ideal high quality of air comfort which is not too cold or hot. Vents should be sealed in order to avoid the air from escaping. With regards to the mandatory capacity of your mobile furnace, you should calculate your load calculation by factoring the size of your mobile home, insulation as well as other components.

When searching for a furnace, make sure that you consider your climate. If you live somewhere that gets into sub-freezing temperatures in the winter then you will want a furnace than a place that just goes into the 40’s. Make sure you do your homework just before purchasing a furnace. Speak with other mobile home owners and see what types they’ve got and find out should they have virtually any recommendations for you. Also call in professionals for free estimates, ask them tons of questions-if the estimate is free then you are under no obligation to buy! Also look online for consumer reports and such to get reviews of different types of furnaces to get a better idea of exactly what you need be looking for.

Should you decide to move into a mobile home community, it will be worth your while to check the web and conduct your own research.

How to Minimize Air Conditioning Repairs

Air conditioner repair can be expensive. Take preventative action to ensure that you are doing your part to keep your AC unit working smoothly year after year.


If your air conditioning system breaks down in the middle of a heat wave, it can be a major inconvenience. You won’t have air conditioning when you need it the most, and you may have to cancel some plans to schedule immediate repairs. To avoid these problems, many homeowners look for ways to minimize air conditioning repairs throughout the year. Let’s look at a few ways you can keep your system running at its best and avoid sudden breakdowns.

Clean the Air Filters

One of the easiest ways you can help reduce the need for repairs is by changing your filter. The air filter keeps pollutants from entering your ductwork. If the filter gets too dirty over time, you won’t get enough airflow to the evaporator coil, an insufficiency that could lead to many repair needs including a frozen coil or reduced cooling capacity. Experts recommend you change or replace the air filter once every month, although this number may vary depending on usage.

Schedule Regular Maintenance

Scheduling air conditioning maintenance with a technician once or twice a year is the best way to keep your unit running smoothly. During maintenance, a professional will inspect …


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What are fireplace inserts?

The switch from traditional wood burning fireplaces to gas fireplace inserts can be tough, but there are many advantages to gas. Understanding more about these inserts can make the choice much simpler.


Fireplace close-up.

Ah, the crackle of a fire in the hearth. There’s nothing like a blazing fireplace to create a sense of warmth and comfort. However, there’s a major downside to the traditional wood-burning fireplace, whether it’s a factory-built fireplace or a masonry fireplace: heat loss.

Fireplaces are, by nature, not very efficient. They pull warm air out of the room and into the fire. A lot of t­hat energy — heat — is lost up the chimney and through the material that surrounds it. When temperatures drop below freezing, a fireplace exhausts more energy than it creates. The Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association rates older fireplaces’ efficiency at 5 percent to 10 percent [source: Kaufman].


Most fireplace inserts are designed to increase a fireplace’s efficiency. An insert is basically a fireproof box that’s surrounded by steel or cast iron and fronted by insulated glass, creating a closed combustion system. The steel or cast iron helps to trap the heat. Some inserts have a blower that pushes the hot air back into the room through front vents. Properly installed, fireplace inserts can be a much more efficient supplemental zone heater than a traditional fireplace [source: Wood Heat Organization].

Inserts can be powered by electricity, gas, propane, wood, pellets or coal.

Electric, gas and propane inserts also offer owners a big timesaving advantage. Consider this: To build a fire, you have to gather the materials, which in some cases involve a tree, an axe and a great workout. Even if you buy wood, you­ still have to haul and store it. There’s also preparation involved in setting up a fire: You need seasoned wood, papers and kindling to get it going. Smoke might get in your eyes (especially if you forget to open the flue!) as you tend to the fire to keep it going. And afterwards, you’ve got to clean all the ash out of the fireplace.

With an electric or gas insert, all you have to do to start the …



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Top Five Advantages Your Can Have From Biomass Boilers

Biomass Boilers are eco-friendly boilers that utilize of logs and wood pellets as fuel. They are incredibly popular amongst those with an inclination to utilizing environment-friendly and sustainable heating systems. Biomass heating systems may generate significant cost savings versus conventional heating. The degree of saving can vary depending on the particular system chosen. In addition the environmental benefits are a considerable reduction in carbon emissions. Buying and looking for Biomass boilers is straightforward; as long as you did your homework.”

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Now that traditional energy supplying approaches are escalating in price and people are getting more mindful of the effect they’ve got on the environment, alternative methods are getting increasingly popular as they are more eco-friendly and cost-effective. One popular alternative is biomass boilers.

Usage of organic products

Biomass boilers burn wood which is an organic fuel in comparison with fossil fuels that come from the ground (oil, gas, coal). The boilers burn untreated wood (such as logs, wood chips) and treated wood (most frequent being wood pallets). Fossil fuels are typically related to global warming and climate change. When fossil fuels are burned, they release CO2 as part of their natural chemical reaction. On the other hand, biomass boilers are eco-friendly.

Versatile in kind

A biomass heating system can be used as space heating of buildings, hot water production, steam production, or any kind of combination of these plus it largely uses biomass as a fuel, some systems can also dual-fire with a fossil fuel to meet peak demands for back-up. They could be utilized at almost any scale, from domestic through to ‘light’ commercial, to industrial or district heating systems.

Much cheaper source of heating

You’ll be less exposed to increases in energy prices. Right now, global energy costs are unstable and sometimes subject to political crisis. Conflicts in some oil and gas regions suggest that the energy market may be erratic and price rises inevitable. Budgeting for energy costs in this erratic market can be hard from one year to the next, with the expectation that energy prices will usually increase. Biomass fuel cost less than fossil fuel and is sustainable long-term providing a program is put in place to control woodland and resources.

Lower CO2 emissions

Another reason biomass is now very popular as it’s a very clean, renewable source for energy and fuel. There are numerous advantages to the utilization of biomass. It is not only a cheap source, but additionally, it won’t add any CO2 to the atmosphere. Biomass is a sensible notion as it uses trash and waste material in a manner that helps the environment and It decreases your carbon footprint.

Much safer

Compared to heating unit utilizing fossil fuels, biomass system release much lower number of pollutants in to the atmosphere. This guarantees very little health problems for users, and decreased risk of asthma, bronchial troubles and other medical concerns.

Biomass is used mainly as the fuel even though some of the systems may use biomass with a fossil fuel as a back-up for fulfilling peak demands. Biomass systems certainly are a much cheaper system for heating and even electrical power. In comparison with those utilizing fossil fuels, biomass boilers result in lower carbon dioxide emissions.