The Essential Guide to Keeping Comfortable in Cincinnati this Fall

Fall is finally here! In addition to fun fall activities, this time of year also brings with it some of the most beautiful weather in Cincinnati. Though the highs can be fairly moderate, the low fall temperatures can quickly reach the 30s and 40s, especially in late fall as winter approaches. As the temperatures start to drop, you may find it harder to stay comfortable in the city. Below, we’ve put together some of our favorite ways to enjoy fall while keeping comfortable in Cincinnati.

Keep moving!

The best way to stay warm this fall in Cincinnati is to keep your body moving through exercise and activity. What better way to enjoy the beautiful fall air then a family hiking trip. There are plenty of beautiful family-friendly hiking spots in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky to keep you busy this fall. Whether you check out the trails at the Cincinnati Nature Center or take the family on a day trip to Big Bone Lick State Park, there are plenty of fun hiking adventures just a short trip away from the city.

Have fun indoors.

When the cold starts to be a bit too much, there are plenty of fun things to do indoors in the Cincinnati area. If you want to heat things up a bit, check out the Cincinnati Fire Museum, which provides a fun and educational experience that allows you to learn more about the history of firefighting as well as some fire-safety education. The Newport Aquarium is another fun option for escaping the cold. This family-friendly experience is perfect for families with young children who love to learn about animals and the sea.

Enjoy a hot beverage.

What better way to warm up then enjoy a hot and tasty fall beverage? Left Bank Coffeehouse offers a variety of fun fall drinks to please every palette. From the classic Pumpkin Latte and Hot Spiced Cider to the Citrus Spiced Chai or Candy Corn Latte, Left Bank has an array of drinks to warm you up and get you ready for the fall season. If you want to enjoy the fall air, you can enjoy your drink on the patio or back deck. For the colder days, grab a table inside the coffeehouse.

Get a pre-winter HVAC tune-up.

A pre-winter HVAC tune-up should be on your fall maintenance checklist. If you haven’t yet gotten your fall heater tune-up yet, now is a good time to schedule a maintenance visit from your favorite Cincinnati HVAC team – Hader Solutions. We are ready to help you stay comfortable year-round by providing quality air conditioning and heating maintenance and repair. Whether your heater is acting funny or you just want to make sure that it’s clean and ready for the winter time, fall is the best time to schedule a service visit.

Call us today for your pre-winter HVAC tune-up: (513) 612-9201.

What is the Best Temperature for my Thermostat to Be Set?

When the temperatures rise outdoors, they also tend to rise indoors as well, which can create an environment that is very uncomfortable within your home. Yet, as we all well know, running an air conditioner nonstop during the hottest months of the year can certainly get expensive. There is one thing you can do, however, to decrease the amount you spend on cooling costs, and that is to mind your thermostat. Most people don’t realize the important connection between your thermostat and energy costs, but by taking a few easy precautions, you can start experiencing practically effortless energy savings.

What’s the Best Home Thermostat Setting? It Depends.

There’s a common assumption that the most energy efficient setting for your thermostat is 72ºF, but this isn’t exactly true. It is much smarter to instead set your thermostat to a temperature that is close the the reading outside, within about 4ºF. That means, if the temperature is in the mid 80’s outdoors, aim for high 70s indoors.

In the summer months, it’s wise to set your thermostat to the highest temperature you can tolerate; in the winter, go as cold as you can stand. This helps to keep your A/C or furnace from working overtime, which can really hike up your energy bills. For best overall system functioning and energy savings, aim for 78ºF in the summertime and 68ºF in the wintertime.

Making the Adjustment

If those ideal temperature settings seem too hot or too cold for your taste, rest assured that they are quite easy to adjust to. Even though this adjustment can take some time, it’s well worth the generous energy savings over the long run. You can also adjust your thermostat gradually and still reap the rewards of lower energy bills. Simply start at your normal setting, and each day (or every other day) either decrease or increase your thermostat to reach your ideal seasonal setting. Do this until you have worked your way up to 78ºF during warmer temps and 68ºF during cooler weather. Your body will adjust quite easily to this change and your wallet will thank you! For every degree you modify your thermostat towards the ideal temperature setting, you could save between 3 and 5%!

Consider a Programmable Thermostat

Another easy way to save on energy costs and still keep comfortable is to invest in a programmable thermostat, and allow it to do the temperature adjustment for you. These convenient devices are easy to install and offer several benefits to improve the comfort of your home. With a programmable thermostat, you can adjust the temperature inside your home on an automatic schedule with little fuss or worry on your end. This is extremely helpful for people who spend a good deal of time away, either at work or at school. For example, you can set the thermostat schedule to adjust your indoor temperature to a setting that would save you a lot of energy (for example, 80º during the summertime) and have it drop back down to a more comfortable temperature 30 minutes before you are due to arrive home.

Expert Home Audits for Energy Savings

If you are interested in learning how much energy you can save in your home, or would like to know exactly how much energy you’re using currently, we can help! We at Hader Heating, Cooling, and Roofing understand the importance of energy efficiency in the home and offer comprehensive home energy audits to give you a better understanding of your home energy use, and where you may be able to reduce costs.

Creative Ways to Handle the Heat in Your Home This Summer

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.

Contact Hader Solutions for an energy efficiency audit and for a full HVAC inspection to ensure that your home is ready to handle the heat this summer.

Spring is just around the corner! What a Change in Seasons Means for Your Indoor Air Quality

The seasons are changing. The weather is getting warmer. The days are lasting longer. And, right now your home’s indoor air is more vulnerable to pollution caused by pollen and other debris.

As spring approaches, it’s vital that you pay attention to your indoor air quality, particularly because outdoor air quality during this time of year can be so problematic. If you suffer from allergies during the springtime, or if you’re just looking to achieve better indoor air quality within your home, read on to find out how springtime impacts your indoor air quality.

How Springtime Affects Indoor Air Quality

Here’s a quick breakdown of how the coming spring can start to impact the air quality inside your home:

Pollen

Check your favorite weather station for local pollen alerts, and act accordingly. When the pollen is high, you don’t want to have your windows open wide as this will allow pollen inside your home. If you suffer from seasonal allergies, you’re just asking for an allergy attack. Even if you aren’t a seasonal allergy sufferer, it’s not good to have pollen building up within your home as it can seriously affect the quality of your living environment.

Water

As we all know, springtime brings plenty of rain showers to Ohio, and with these showers come excess moisture in the air and a susceptibility to leaks in the home from storms or heavy rains. Prevent water from entering your home by making sure there are no cracks or gaps on your roof or foundation where water could easily enter. Standing water in your home can cause mold, which can be detrimental to indoor air quality. If you suspect any mold in your home, call an expert immediately to remove it.

Dust

Because of improper ventilation during the colder months, dust can settle into vents, registers, and eventually ductwork, making it close to impossible to rid your home of these irritating pollutants. The best way to combat these issues is to clean your home’s vents and registers regularly, and have your ductwork inspected. Your ductwork is the main passageway for air that moves through your home. If dust and debris are found to have built-up within your ducts, it’s a good idea to get your ducts sealed and cleaned to prevent this polluted air from constantly cycling throughout your home. Once your ductwork is cleaned and any gaps within it are sealed, you can start to enjoy the benefits of better air quality immediately afterwards.

Why Spring Cleaning is Important

Our indoor air quality can really suffer as the seasons begin to change, especially after a harsh Ohio winter when we tend to close up our doors tightly and not open the windows. Spring can be an ideal time to rid your house of dust and debris that may have settled in over the winter, but you’ll need to dig deeper than surface cleaning to truly combat pollutants in your air. That’s why it’s important to deep clean your house during your spring cleaning. This helps you rid your home of harmful pollutants in the air that may have collected over winter time.

While you are spring cleaning, you might notice that you’re starting to kick up dust that has settled over the winter. One way to help cycle this dust through your air filter is to use the “run” or “cycle” setting on your thermostat immediately after vacuuming. This will help capture particles before they settle back down onto surfaces within your home. Run for 30 minutes and then switch back on to your normal settings.

You may also want to consider upgrading your HVAC filter to a HEPA filter if you haven’t switched yet. These filters trap a considerable amount of particles in the air that traditional air filters can miss, creating a cleaner and healthier environment for you and your family. If you need help finding the right air filter for you, contact us today.

Do I need an Air Purifier? And Other Frequently Asked Questions About Maintaining Home Comfort

Homeownership is rewarding, but it can be a difficult thing to navigate for both new and seasoned homeowners alike. We’ve compiled a list of some very commonly asked questions about maintaining home comfort.

Home Comfort: Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the home comfort questions that we most often here from our customers:

Q: Do I need an air purifier?

A: It depends. There are several circumstances when it would be a good idea to think about getting an air purifier. If your home smells of varnish, adhesive (from carpets), or other noxious scents, then an air purifier would be a good idea. Also, if you notice a lot of excess dust particles in your home, even after cleaning, then an air purifier could help to clean the air.

If anyone in your home suffers from respiratory issues, an air purifier can help to keep maintain excellent indoor air quality for you and your loved ones’ health.

Q: Will houseplants actually improve my indoor air quality?

A: Houseplants can be quite beneficial to your home’s air. Seek out broad leafed plants or plants with a lot of leafy surface area, such as ivy and ferns. Plants help clean the air by taking in pollutants from the air, such as harmful gases, and converting them into oxygen. This helps make the air cleaner and purer while adding a little greenery to your living environment.

Q: Should I make special consideration if I have pets?

A: Yes. Pay close attention to areas of your home where dust collects as it can be particularly bad with pets. These are the areas where pet-friendly homes collect extra dander and pet debris, such as around vents, and behind large furniture and appliances. Excess dust and debris can get caught up in your home’s air ducts by way of your HVAC system.

To prevent buildup of pet dander and debris, clean your home on a regular basis. Make sure to vacuum carpets, furniture, and drapes or curtains regularly. You may also want to have your ductwork cleaned professionally, and invest in a special HVAC air filter to trap pet debris.

Q: What’s the ideal temperature to set your home’s thermostat?

A: Even though 72ºF seems to be the common default temperature for your home, it really depends on the time of year and the temperature outside. It’s actually beneficial for both your budget and your health if you set your thermostat to run a little “less comfortably” than you’d expect. For instance, in the wintertime, try setting your thermostat at 69ºF.

In the wintertime, for every degree you decrease, you could save up to 5% in energy costs. In fact, according to the National Sleep Association, we actually may sleep best at a cooler temperature, especially when covered with blankets.

The same goes for the summertime. Instead of cranking your air conditioner on the coldest setting you can tolerate, try setting it a bit above what you normally would, and use ceiling fans and open windows to circulate air throughout your home.

Q: What is Sick Building Syndrome? Is my home at risk?

A: Sick building syndrome, or sick house syndrome, is a phenomenon that describes an experience of malaise that occurs in occupants of homes and other buildings, most likely due to poor air quality. Symptoms can include headaches, flu-like symptoms, dizziness, and ear nose and throat irritation.

To prevent this from occurring in your home, increase ventilation as well as air distribution within the home. If you are aware of strong pollutants, then your home’s air will need to be vented to flow outside of your home. Another helpful way to prevent sick building syndrome is to have routine professional maintenance performed on your HVAC system to ensure it’s running smoothly year-round. You should also work to control any standing water or moisture in your home, which could lead to mold growth.

If you need professional HVAC maintenance or duct sealing, contact us today. Both of these services will help ensure you and your family will reap the rewards of excellent air quality within your home. Give us a call today to learn more: 513-612-9201.