Your home’s heating and cooling system works around the clock to provide the comfort you need in your interior space. Because of this, use of these units account for nearly half of your home energy bill. By making wise decisions for your HVAC equipment, you can lower your costs without compromising performance.
Many homeowners experience inconsistent indoor temperatures, even when their heating and air conditioning units are running smoothly. This is most likely is caused by the design of their house and the angle of the sun. In homes with multiple stories, for instance, the rooms upstairs are usually humid while the areas downstairs are chilly. This can cause comfort and efficiency issues, especially when you share your home with others.
This summer, go greener at home. You don’t need to invest in a ton of expensive energy saving equipment to reap the rewards that come with a more sustainable living space, you can get started today! With just a few simple tweaks to your living space, you’ll be enjoying a more eco-friendly home in no time.
In this post, we’ve listed several great ways that you can make your home more eco-friendly this summer. With these easy to implement ideas, you can make your home greener and your energy usage lighter. Read on to find out how you can become more environmentally friendly and save money on energy costs at home.
Eco-Friendly Home Tips
For an even more eco-friendly home, consider having a home energy appraisal. We at Hader Heating, Cooling, and Roofing Company have professionally trained technicians perform these appraisals, where we help you discover the very best energy improvements for you and your home’s needs. We also offer excellent incentives that help owners qualify for the best pricing. For more details, give us a call: (513) 612-9201
Here in Ohio, we are used to all the elements from chilly, wicked winters to hot and steamy summers. As our climate shifts, we have hotter and hotter temperatures here in Cincinnati and we need to get more and more creative to beat the heat.
Top Tips for Beating the Heat this Summer
Block out the sun. According to the US Department of Energy, a nice sun-deflecting light curtain can nearly cut heat transfer into your home by half!
Close your fireplace damper. Through a process called “flow reversal,” your open fireplace will counterbalance your air conditioner by pulling hot air into your home. Avoid this fireplace faux pas by closing the damper when you run your AC.
Seal out heat. The average human begins to perspire in 78 degree weather. If temperatures outside hit 77 or higher, even if you’re not ready to run the air conditioning, tightly shut your windows for optimal comfort.
Fan smarter. Sometimes, with all the day’s ins and outs, summer heat just gets in! Wait, until later, when the temps dip into the 70s, and run your fan in a window. But, don’t face the flow toward the room! Your fan is trained to suck hot air in the back, so blowing it out the window will feel better.
Unplug. Nix computer usage to cut down on heat emissions and avoid using your oven or stove as much as possible. To combat these daily-life norms, grill dinner or eat out and put your laptop in sleep mode, as it will emit heat even when idle if not put to rest.
Bare it all. Bare feet can actually cool your whole body by evaporating the sweat on your feet, caused by socks and sneakers, and sending a cooling signal throughout your blood vessels to other parts of your body.
Cut the lights. Your light bulbs will emit heat into your room and this is doubly true for fluorescent bulbs. Try to limit use of indoor lights during the day as much as possible to experience less undue heat.
Eat the heat. Ever notice that spicier cuisines originate from warm-weather climates like Thailand, India, and South America? This is by design. Capsaicin, a chemical found in hot peppers, causes immediate perspiration which will evaporate and cool your body.
Maximize your AC. It’s much harder to beat the heat with an AC unit that isn’t working efficiently. Ensure that your system is operating at its best by replacing older filters, sealing up and cracks around windows, cleaning your ducts and placing weatherstripping around doorways.
Your air conditioning unit has to work pretty hard during the summer. It’s also where a good portion, if not most, of your electric bill is going to come from. To keep your air conditioning running at peak performance, efficiency, and trouble-free, follow these tips to stay cool and save money.
Tips For Your Home Air Conditioner to Use This Summer
1.) Have Your Air Conditioner Serviced
Without servicing, your air conditioner will lose about 5% of it’s efficiency every year. Your 12 SEER unit could be functioning at the efficiency of a 9 SEER unit in just a few years. That’s a huge difference! Regular maintenance is the backbone of any strategy for keeping your equipment running for a long time and at the lowest costs possible. Things like coil cleanings, refrigerant checks, voltage and amp draw measuring, and fan checks will have your air conditioner keeping not only the temps low but your bills, too.
2.) Check and Replace Filters
A dirty, clogged, filter can have pretty severe effects on your air conditioning unit. If the flow is blocked enough it can cause your evaporator coil to ice over, which is no good. That starts a downward spiral of all sorts of bad effects like decreased cooling, shut off, and possibly malfunctioning. So replace your filters on schedule.
3.) Set your Thermostat
During the summer you’re going to want to set your thermostat with regards to the season. That means trying to keep it at 78* or above. Remember, for every degree below 78* that you set the thermostat you’re losing about 8% efficiency. So if your cooling bill is $200, that’s $16 a month for every degree. You’ll also want to make sure that your thermostat is out of direct light and any sources of heat such as lights, are kept away from it.
Also, set up your thermostat on a schedule if you have a programmable one. That way when you leave for work, you don’t have to worry about raising the dial. You’ll save a lot of energy by raising the temperature while no one is home and lowering it an hour or so before you get home. Your AC unit is more efficient when it’s running at ‘full blast’ for that hour before you get home than it does by running for short intervals throughout the day.
If you have a split system, where the condenser coil is on the ground outside, try and keep that in the shade as much as possible. Consider planting some trees or shrubs nearby to keep the sunlight off it. The condenser coil is where all the heat generated has to be dissipated, so keeping that cool makes it have to work much less hard, saving you money.
By following just a few simple steps you can keep your summertime bills low and your home comfortable. Be sure to follow the Hader Heating and Air Conditioning blog for more money-saving and maintenance tips and give us a call for service if you haven’t already!
Home air conditioning has been a great invention. It allows us to keep cool and comfortable in otherwise hot environments and keeps our food fresh. But the coolant used inside of the systems can cause a lot of trouble for the environment if not handled properly. Early coolants were chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s) or hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFC’s) and they were very damaging to the ozone layer. These CFC’s and HCFC’s are what made the hole in the ozone layer.
Since the Clean Air Act, there has been a set of specific guidelines for the reclamation, recycling, and destruction of the coolants used in HVAC systems. This includes requiring special training and certification to be legally allowed to collect and sell reclaimed refrigerant. It is illegal for someone not specifically trained in the recovery process following the EPA’s guidelines to attempt to recover the used refrigerant.
When the system is pumped down, the old refrigerant is transferred to an empty, DOT approved refrigerant cylinder for storage. Once the refrigerant is collected it is weighed and the same amount of new refrigerant is put into the system. The cylinder of new refrigerant is placed onto the scale and allowed to pump the same weight back into the system.
There are several options for what to do with the old refrigerant. You can store it long term in approved containers. It can be sold to a recycling plant. Or it can be sent to a destruction facility.
When selling to a recycling plant, an EPA certified technician is required to make the sale. The facility will then use various chemical processes, reactions, and distillation techniques to bring the old refrigerant back to within the same tolerances of impurities that new refrigerants have.
If intended for destruction, the refrigerant will under go any of several destruction methods: rotary kiln, cement kiln, radio frequency plasma, liquid injection incineration, or gaseous/flume oxidation. Each of these methods will meet the EPA’s mandated 99.9% destruction rate.
At Hader Solutions, we care about the environment and all of our technicians meet and follow the EPA guidelines and certifications. If your HVAC system needs servicing, give us a call and we would be happy to help you.
The idea of caring for the planet sounds like a noble thing to do and — an overwhelming goal at the same time. Rather than taking on the responsibility of looking after every aspect of the earth on your own, you can take steps to take care of your home and have that be your contribution toward looking after the planet. If everyone did what they could in their own living space, the planet would be a lot healthier.
Ways You Can Care for your Home & The Planet
1. Get Rid of Clutter
Go through your home and get rid of things you no longer need or use. Donate items that are in good condition to charity and take clothing that your children have outgrown or that you no longer wear to a thrift store. If you have old magazines on hand, find out if your local thrift store will take them as well or recycle them.
2. Harmonize your Living Space with Feng Shui Principles
Feng shui has been used for 4,000 years, and there is something to this practice of placing furniture and other items in your home in a particular manner to achieve a good energy flow. If your home has this type of positive energy flow, you are helping the planet. Borrow a book from the public library, explore this subject online, enlist the help of a professional feng shui consultant or move your furniture yourself until you feel you have made a difference in your indoor environment.
3. Make Necessary Repairs
Having broken items or things that need to be repaired in your home will bring you down. It’s not always possible to attend to them right away due to lack of funds, though. Try to make repairs to your home a priority before you invest in “stuff” like furniture or electronics to decorate your interior.
Putting off repairs to things like a rooftop air conditioner means that your unit will not work as efficiently. It will need more energy and cost more money to try to cool your home. This is not the best situation for you or the planet. By making the repair a priority, you can deal with the problem before it becomes a bigger, and even more expensive, one.
4. Make your Home Inviting by Adding Curb Appeal
The front of your home is the first thing that visitors will see when they approach your property. Make a point of making it look attractive by painting your front door a bright color. Add some flowers to your yard, a window box, or by using hanging planters to add some brightness.
5. Vow to Leave your Space in Better Shape than when you Moved in
When you move out of one home, vow to yourself that it should look better than when you moved in. Your improvement could be through your decorating efforts or because of your regular maintenance and repairs. You could have improved the space by keeping it immaculate by cleaning it regularly.
Hader Air Conditioning is your trusted HVAC contractor in Cincinnati. Contact us for all of air conditioning repair needs.
Buying a new furnace or air conditioner is full of potential pitfalls. With so many decisions to make, it’s easy to neglect important considerations and rush into the first enticing deal that comes your way. However, taking your time and doing your research will help you to avoid these common and potentially costly mistakes when replacing your AC or furnace: