The initial costs of geothermal home heating may be high, but the system is eco-friendly and reduces heating and cooling bills considerably.
The geothermal heat pump, also known as the geo-exchange heat pump, is among the most reliable, environmentally responsible, and cost-effective home-comfort technologies available. It’s also easily dismissed because of its steep up-front price tag. But with energy costs likely to rise and government incentives now widely available, today’s savvy homeowners are giving this incredibly efficient heating and cooling technology a closer look.
What makes geothermal heat pumps so outstanding is their efficiency. For example, the very best natural-gas furnaces provide about a 95% efficiency rate—meaning that for every dollar you spend on electricity and gas to heat your home, the furnace is able to return about 95 cents worth of heat. A geothermal system will give you more than four times that rate. That efficiency translates in to savings. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, a geothermal system will save 50% to 70% of home energy usage for heating and cooling.
There’s another reason to consider geothermal heat pumps. Because they require only a trickle of electricity to power the pump and fan, they produce no CO2 emissions and help reduce demand for fossil fuels.
Picture this: on a 99-degree day in the middle of August, your HVAC system suddenly stops working – leaving you, your children, and your pets with no relief from the unrelenting heat of summer.
Pretty horrific scenario, right? Unfortunately, that’s just the type of nightmare that can drive some homeowners to make snap decisions and become more vulnerable to dishonest sales tactics or outright scams – especially since most homeowners aren’t familiar with the ins and outs of their home’s HVAC system, causing them to rely on their service provider’s expertise and honesty.
How to hire the right HVAC repair company:
Angie’s List, a subscription-based, crowd-sourced review website of local businesses, offers the following tips on how to avoid a painful and costly run-in with the wrong HVAC repair company.
1. Check licenses. Many states, and even some cities and municipalities, require HVAC contractors to have specific licenses to operate on HVAC equipment. You can look up your state’s and/or local government’s online database of contractor licensing requirements through Angie’s List’s License Check.
2. Do your homework. This means checking references (a professional HVAC repair company should have a list of recent customers that you can call), and checking to make sure that the company is bonded and insured in addition to being licensed.
3. Pay attention to detail. When looking at new or replacement heating and cooling equipment, ask prospective companies what specific manufacturers or equipment brands they carry. Unlike other home improvement contractors, HVAC repair companies often carry only a small selection of brands; and it’s important that you limit your hiring choices to companies that specialize in your equipment brand of choice.
4. Ask about payment schedules. On a big job, especially when installing new equipment, you may need to make a deposit and make progress payments or planned payments. If you use a payment plan or apply for financing through the HVAC repair company’s line of credit, make sure you read all the fine print and know what you’ll be financially responsible for.
July is the most popular month for summer vacations. If you are planning on traveling this summer, don’t forget the important things, such as putting your lights on a timer, locking doors, and preparing your HVAC system for your absence.
Change the Thermostat Temperature
It may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people forget to raise the temperature on the thermostat when they are leaving on vacation. For those with programmable or smart thermostats, you will need to manually override the schedule in order to keep the temperature set while you are away.
It’s important to set the temperature correctly to prevent heat and moisture problems while also saving money and energy. You don’t want to turn the system completely off.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you should set your thermostat to 85-90F degrees when leaving on vacation. But that can be too high a temperature for many homes. We recommend setting your thermostat no higher than 85F degrees to protect furniture, electronics, and other sensitive equipment. If you have wine, expensive art, and other temperature sensitive objects, it’s best to set the temperature to 80F degrees.
Change the Air Filter
Although nobody will be home to experience the air filtration benefits of a new air filter, it’s a good idea to change the air filter anyway. A clean air filter will increase the airflow and efficiency of your HVAC system while also helping to clean the indoor air for your arrival.
Close Doors, Windows, and Shades
Prevent air leaks and energy inefficiencies by remembering to close all of your doors and windows. If you notice any severe air leaks, get them fixed and sealed before you leave. Go around the home and close all, or most, of your interior and exterior window shades. This includes awnings, shutters, blinds, curtains, and window overhangs. By closing your interior and exterior shades you can reduce solar heat gain by around 50% (U.S.Department of Energy).
Now sit back, relax, and have a great vacation!
Today’s high-efficiency systems can cut your HVAC costs up to 107 percent and pay for themselves in lower AC and heating bills within several years. You’ll enjoy greater comfort at home while using less energy. You can also rely on your JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air technician to recommend the right-size air conditioning system for your home and install it correctly.We back our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. No wonder so many customers in the Morgantown area have recommended us for AC repairs and service for 30 plus years! Don’t lose your cool! Call 1-888-365-1171 today.
Don’t skip out on your HVAC unit when the time comes for spring cleaning. By removing dust and debris from the interior and exterior of the system, it can run more efficiently. Other things you may look for while spring cleaning are: tighten the electrical connections, clean the different internal components and check the refrigerant levels.
This is clearly quite a bit of work though, so don’t worry! You can always leave that to us with a maintenance check-up. That way, we can make sure all of the parts and pieces are cleaned and restored correctly.
1. Check Filters Frequently
With a pet in your home, your HVAC filter needs to be replaced at least once a month. Hair, dander, skin cells, and other particles can easily clog filters. Consider investing in a reusable filter you can clean yourself.
2. Clean Your Home & Pet Regularly
To help avoid clogs, vacuum and clean your home every other day. Bathe and brush your pet often to get rid of dander and loose fur that would otherwise end up in the filter.
3. Save Energy While You’re Away
Adjusting the temperature when just your pets are in the house won’t make them uncomfortable. Save energy and money by turning it up a few degrees during the summer or down a bit during the winter. Ask an HVAC specialist what range is safe for your home and pets.
4. Have Ducts Inspected & Cleaned
No matter how much house and pet cleaning you do, some hair and particles are bound to make it into your ducts. During your annual residential HVAC maintenance appointment, ask the technician to inspect the ducts for accumulation.
5. Safeguard Your Outdoor Unit
It’s safe for pets to be around outdoor units, but they can scratch parts, urinate on the equipment, and chew on cables. Have a fence installed around the HVAC unit to protect it from four-legged threats.
Owning pets shouldn’t get in the way of your heating and cooling systems. The professionals at JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air will make sure you and your furry family member are comfortable.