Happy Earth Day! This year, why not do your part to protect the planet by looking for ways to save energy in your HVAC system? Heating and cooling account for the single largest energy input in the average family’s home, so it’s the area in which cutting back can have the biggest impact. Check out these tips to reduce your reliance on fossil fuels:
Earth Day tips for your HVAC system:
Get that AC Tuned up: The summer heat is almost here so it’s time to have your air conditioning unit serviced so you know that it’s working at peak efficiency and not wasting precious energy due to malfunction, obstruction or a dirty filter.
Moderate Your Climate Control: Speaking of air conditioning, try to raise the thermostat if you can. No one wants to sweat away the summer, but if you can live with an indoor temperature of 78 degrees or higher, you’ll save money on your bill and reduce your impact on climate change. You can also try to open windows or use a ceiling fan in place of AC.
Beef up Your Insulation: There’s no point in heating or cooling your home if all that energy just escapes through the walls and the roof. If your home isn’t properly insulated, spray foam makes an inexpensive and easy way to provide an extra buffer between indoors and out to keep the treated air inside where it belongs.
Seal the Leaks: If you have drafts or leaks in your home, you’re paying to heat and cool the great outdoors — which is a money-losing proposition, not to mention a dramatic waste of energy. Use caulk or weather stripping to seal any leaks.
Practice Passive Cooling: When the summer sun starts to heat up your home, you can reduce the load on your air conditioner with some strategic shading. Try closing the curtains over sunny windows during the day to reflect the heat away, then opening them at night so the cooler air can help draw down the temperature in your house.
Install a Smart Thermostat: If you don’t want to spend time worrying about adjusting the temperature, try a smart thermostat. These clever devices can save you hundreds of dollars per year by automatically identifying efficiencies in your heating and cooling habits.
Don’t Forget About the Furnace: Although winter is a distant memory in most parts of the country, spring is a good time to have your furnace serviced — or even to buy a new, energy efficient model — so you know it will be ready to perform next fall.
For more tips, call us today at JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air and speak with an HVAC professional. Be the best possible steward to Mother Earth.
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.
Outdated dial thermostats prevent you from enjoying a comfortable (and fuss-free) home environment. For easy home upgrades, new tech is where it’s at!
The latest programmable thermostats are an easy upgrade for energy-efficiency. And a smart thermostat will even let you change your home’s temperature remotely. Depending on the model you choose, you can enjoy a few other perks, too.
Most programmable thermostats include different settings based on the day of the week. This is great for homeowners who have a pretty consistent routine Monday through Friday. When your thermostat is set to your schedule, it will automatically adjust your indoor temp when you’re away, then bring it back to a comfortable level when you return.
As a general rule, you want your programmable thermostat to do the thinking for you. You don’t want to be worried about changing the temperature and checking in when you’re getting ready to leave the house.
Programming your settings helps you save on energy costs when you don’t need that “perfect” indoor temp — like when the whole family is out running errands, working, or at sports practice.
When it comes to programmable thermostats, there isn’t always a clear winner. It usually just depends on what features would be most useful to you. Of course, some devices are made better than others. They might come with better warranties or have a more intuitive display. These factors should always be considered, as should price. You don’t want to pay for a model that doesn’t do everything you want.
Call us today at JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating & Air to talk to us about programmable thermostats. If you’re still dealing with a dial thermostat or some other inconsistent system, this would be a sweet upgrade.
There are things that you can do to keep your home comfortable and energy efficient this winter:
Do not close off unused rooms in your house unless there is a supply AND return register in the room. Your heating system was designed for the square footage of your home so by closing rooms off, you are changing the air flow of your heating system which can actually increase your monthly bill.
Rearrange the furniture to make sure that couches, beds, and other items are not blocking the vents. Allowing the air to flow freely through the house will improve comfort.
Keep all exhaust vents clear. It is very important to understand how your furnace’s exhaust is vented. For example, 90% efficiency furnaces are mostly vented through PVC pipe where it exits your home outside above ground level. It is very important to check that this area is clear of snow and ice, otherwise the buildup will block the exhaust and cause your furnace to not function properly.
Older homes are prone to leaks due to older windows and doors, or chimneys and fireplaces without working dampers. Check for leaks by lighting a candle and holding it by door and window cracks. If the flame moves, you should seal the windows with caulk or put draft guards under the doors. Well-maintained windows last for about 20 years so if yours are older, it may be time to replace them.
With the recent severe winter weather and the extremely cold temperatures, don’t forget how hard your heating system is working. Motors, belts, fans and other critical parts have to work extra hard to keep your home comfortable. To make sure that your heating system continues to work at peak efficiency call JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air for a midwinter check up. The forecast indicates that this will continue to be a severe winter so don’t be left out in the cold.
While the cold weather may be great for deer hunting, it can be challenging for maintenance and service teams. As a result, preparing your HVAC system in commercial buildings and facilities for winter becomes all the more critical.
These tips are tied solely to your heating and cooling systems to ensure that you are ready for whatever Mother Nature has up her sleeve.
Inspect Heating Systems
It’s a no-brainer that maintaining your heating systems should be a top priority in colder weather. We recommend that you inspect heating systems regularly and create a written plan to outline what maintenance tasks need to be addressed daily, weekly, monthly and annually.
Concerning equipment, hot water heating boilers will see increased use. To ensure their proper operation, we suggest you:
Examine flues for carbon buildup
Analyze combustion to ensure the flames burn cleanly and efficiently
Check safeties for proper operation
Look for cracked heat exchangers
Examine water pressure gauges to ensure they are calibrated correctly
Remove and clean burners
Brush boiler tubes
Check expansion tanks for proper air cushion and to ensure they aren’t flooded
Furnaces and rooftop units also need to be checked. Specifically, look for cracks in the heat exchangers, which can leak dangerous carbon monoxide into a building. For furnaces older than 10 years, consider replacement. Efficiency ratings for today’s equipment far exceed those of older ones, sometimes as much as 40 percent or more.
Winterize Cooling Systems
While heating systems move on-line, cooling systems not in use during the winter need to be taken down. This might include draining your cooling tower, shutting down your chiller or emptying a condensate drain trap. Not addressing maintenance tasks as systems are taken off-line could result in significant damage to them. Additionally, necessary repairs can be addressed at this time rather than at the moment when you need cooling in the spring and summer.
Call the professionals today at JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air for all of your HVAC needs.
With DIY books, blogs, TV shows and podcasts, there’s never been more free content out there to help you take on basic maintenance around the house. However, it’s important to remember to follow safety guidelines to avoid accidental injury. If you’re planning on troubleshooting problems with your heating system yourself, keep these furnace safety tips in mind.
One of the most overlooked safety concerns when repairing a heating system is carbon monoxide poisoning. When not properly maintained and monitored, your HVAC system could quickly become a health hazard either due to a damaged system, a diagnostic problem or inadequate maintenance. Because carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas, it’s hard to detect, and prolonged exposure can lead to brain damage and even death. To protect you and your family, keep a carbon monoxide detector with fresh batteries near the furnace at all times. When dealing with any gas-burning system, be sure to follow furnace safety tips by turning off the gas and the power switch and following the manufacturer’s maintenance instructions. If you smell gas while maintaining your furnace, don’t try to fix the leak or shut off the gas yourself. Leave the house immediately and call your utility company’s emergency hotline.
Of course, the best heating system safety precaution you can take is to call JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air. One of our technicians can come to your home to perform a safety check and repair any issue you may have with your heating system. Rather than attempt repairs yourself, our certified and trained technicians will safely service your unit to ensure that your furnace will continue to keep you comfortable.
October is Fire Prevention month so it’s a good time to raise awareness and implement steps to protect your family. According to the National Fire Protection Association, a home structure fire is reported every 87 seconds each year and 3 out of 5 home fire deaths occur in homes without smoke detectors or without working smoke detectors.
Steps to take to be as prepared as possible include:
Home (or workplace) fire escape plan
Changing your smoke-alarm batteries
Awareness of any chemicals in the home
Awareness of main reasons for fires starting in the home
While our HVAC systems keep us comfortable when they are working properly, without proper maintenance, they can become dangerous. Electrical and mechanical failures are the foremost cause of HVAC related home fires. That is why it is important to schedule regular tune-ups so our technicians can make sure everything is working as it should.
When it comes to fire safety, you should do the following:
Ensure that window ACs are plugged into their own outlet.
Replace any improperly grounded receptacles.
Keep any flammable materials far from space heaters.
Use space heaters only on firm and solid surfaces.
Make sure that there are no loose fittings, leaking valves, faulty pilot lights.
Clear any debris or flammable materials stored near your HVAC system
Upgrade any overloaded circuit breakers, panel boxes, or fuse boxes
Inspection of the individual breaker connections
Ready for your HVAC maintenance? Give JMD Corporation/Jackson Heating and Air a call today at 888-365-1171.
Our JMD Corporation family joins with other Americans to offer prayers and support to the people of Texas as they start the long recovery process from Hurricane Harvey. Please consider a financial contribution to any of the many agencies helping with this massive effort