Heat pump is way more energy efficient

When a local HVAC company made the recommendation that we install a heat pump into the house we were building, I was skeptical.  I had always heard that these systems were unreliable, costly, and unable to handle colder weather. Over the years,however, the technology associated with these types of systems had improved greatly.  A heat pump is basically just a type of air conditioning that has the ability to run backwards. In the warmer weather, the unit pulls heat out of the inside of the house and expels it outdoors. It simply creates a cooling effect by lowering the indoor temperature. In the winter, it reverses the process and it takes the heat from outdoors and transfers it inside.  Because of this, the colder the outdoor temperature, the less effective the heat pump. Innovations in technology have made heat pumps far more capable of handling lower temperatures. The advantage of a heat pump is that it doesn’t burn fuel to create heat, which eliminates the combustion process. There is little to no effect on the environment and there are no byproducts, such as carbon monoxide which create a health and safety threat.  There are no flames, fumes, or hot surfaces, and no greenhouse gas emissions. These were all very good arguments as we liked the idea of have an environmentally friendly home. Although a heat pump is rather costly to purchase and complex to install, it does deliver energy savings all year round. I am hoping that the lower operational costs will help us to get back our initial investment within the first few years.

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Hate my HVAC guy

When the day arrived for my HVAC technician to come perform my annual check up, I was anticipating seeing my usual repairman arrive. We  always have the same HVAC service tech do our HVAC checkup. His name is Charlie, and he is always polite, knowledgeable, and respectful. I was expecting to see Charlie when I arrived home because the HVAC van was already there. Instead, I saw another gentleman who was definitely not Charlie. He seemed rather annoyed and immediately asked if we could just get started because he was in a hurry. I was quite taken aback yet, I replied that of course we could. He had already looked over my air conditioning unit outside and needed to come inside to change the air filters and check the ductwork. Charlie normally does this carefully to make sure he is not getting mess everywhere. This guy, whose name I never found out, just walked through the house with mud on his boots and never even apologized! After checking everything over, he told me, rather rudely, that my air conditioner was filthy and that I needed a ductwork cleaning and I could use an air purification system, as well. Then, he left. I immediately, called the HVAC supplier to speak to customer service. Charlie had never once told me any of those things. How could things have changed within just a few months? I spoke to the HVAC manager who told me that the HVAC service tech who came to my home is brand new. She apologized for his rudeness and said that he would send Charlie by as soon as possible to give me another opinion.

air conditioner technician

Waiting on the HVAC appointment

This week, I have a busy schedule at school. Aside from my normal work days and classes, I have the after school program too and it runs from 3:00 to 4:00. Normally, this wouldn’t be a problem, however, I am concerned because I am supposed to be home by 4:30 in order to meet the HVAC technician  to see about him repairing my HVAC unit or possibly installing a new one. When I called for the appointment, the HVAC representative I spoke with at the company I called told me that their schedule was really booked up. She said that an HVAC representative could come this week at 4:30, however the time would be tight and hopefully the repairs wouldn’t take longer than an hour. It was imperative that I was there right at 4:30. At the time, I did not remember that I was scheduled for after school so I said that this was fine. When I remembered, I thought of cancelling the HVAC appointment altogether, despite the fact that I really need to get the issue taken care of before I leave to go out of town on Thursday. I am hoping and praying that the students in program are all picked up early so that I will be able to leave a few minutes before 4:00. My commute home is normally 35 minutes. If I leave right at 4, I will really be late for my HVAC appointment, and the technician may leave if I am not there. I will have time to make another appointment before I leave. All I can do is hope for the best at this point because there is no one else to stay with the students.

HVAC tools

Mother’s smart thermostat

I definitely regret giving my mother smart temperature control for her birthday. I thought, at the time, that it was such a great gift. She had been using her old dial temperature control for over twenty years… My mother replaced the Heating & A/C device to be more modern, and the temperature control was the last thing to change! On paper the smart temperature control sounds so handy as well as incredibly easy to use. All you have to do is download the app as well as run the heating or cooling from your iphone, tablet, or computer. The smart temperature control learns your Heating & A/C needs as well as then automatically does it after a little while. In addition to this, the temperature control scans as well as turns off when you are not at the household. It also can alert you on dirty air quality, a broken fan, or even when an air filter change is needed. I got the best of the best in temperature control for our mom. I am easily regretting the purchase because the smart Heating & A/C technology is far beyond her technological knowledge. My mother does not even understand what an app is as well as how to use it. I have gone over to her house plenty of times to show her how to use the temperature control… Everytime I check her temperature control program, I see that it is turned off. The temperature control never gets to actually learn since she keeps it turned off most of the time. My mother also freaks out when the temperature control alerts her about air filter changes. She wants that off as well. Basically, our mother wants her old temperature control back. I’m just so cheerful I spent all that money as well as spent all that time teaching her. I probably should have gotten a digital temperature control.

smart thermostat

Way more interest in the heated floors

I am certainly out of the loop with women my own age. Most women my age are married & have at least one child… I am single & I don’t even have a pet. I still rent an apartment, have purple hair & I drive a Harley rather than a massive minivan! Needless to say, my old school friends & I have trouble connecting on things in life anymore. Last weekend, my friend Pam wanted me to visit her new baby. Pam wanted to fawn all over her new kid that was basically just a little pile of goo. I did not do the best job at being a guest in her place… The reason is that I was so caught up by Pam’s heating device. I walked into her household & immediately felt my feet being heated. Pam has radiant floors in her household. Her boiler device basically has a bunch of pipes connected to it. The pipes are under the floors & filled with water heated up by the boiler. The warm pipes create hydronic heating. This type of heating is incredibly silent & is not messy. My friend Pam also told me that it is twice as efficient since you don’t need to set the temperature control nearly as high. As heat rises, radiant heat warms all objects that touch it & you definitely feel so much warmer when your feet are warm. How awesome is that? I only wanted to talk about the hydronic oil furnace & get more details about it. I want to get it for our household. Pam was anxious because she actually only cared about her baby at that moment. The radiant floors are way more impressive to me though.

hydronic heating

Wine and quality cooling

Do you enjoy wine? I must say that I like wine a little, however often I find it to be too bitter. My former fiance was a wine enthusiast, and she told myself and others that the reason I did not entirely care for wine was because I never drank any fantastic wine. She was supposed to teach myself and others all about wines, and I was entirely looking forward to it. The very first time I went to her household, I was so surprised to discover her wine cellar. It was absolutely stunning, and the temperature control was set to a particular temperature! Winter or summer, she kept the temperature control set the same. Apparently, if wine does not stay in the perfect air conditioned temperature, it loses its flavor and basically turns to vinegar. It truly makes me wonder how wine in trucks without a/c in the back even tastes nice at all. Anyway, she told myself and others she has 2 separate cooling devices at her house; one Heating, Ventilation, and A/C device for the wine cellar and another Heating, Ventilation, and A/C device for the residing space. She even has a backup generator for the a/c in the wine cellar, however she does not have one for the a/c upstairs where people do most of their living! It seems to me that she treats the wine better than the guests who come to enjoy it, however not really. If you are going to be a wine enthusiast, you need the best a/c. Unfortunately, she died before the two of us could actually get married and I wasn’t able to learn much about wine or a/c. I miss my lovely wine enthusiast and her fantastic a/c!

First thing I did was wash the air ducts

When I initially moved into our townhouse, I was so gleeful to have a washer and dryer once again… When I lived in my former apartment, the washer broke down and the little cubby it was located in inside the kitchen was so small that the repairman could not manage to service it… So, I did my first load of laundry, and guess what? It took forever for our clothes to dry. The dryer was on for hours, and the clothes were not dry in the least. I called in an appliance repairman, however she said our dryer was just fine and said that I might need to get our dryer vent and ductwork cleaned out. I have never cleaned ductwork in my life, so I wasn’t even sure what to think. I called the landlord and asked him about cleaning the ductwork and dryer vents, however she said that the previous leaseholders told her the ductwork was just fine. She called in a Heating as well as Air Conditioning specialist to inspect the ductwork and dryer vents. Sure enough, the Heating as well as Air Conditioning service serviceman said the dryer vent and ductwork did appear to be rather clogged and dirty. I got the ductwork cleaned out, and the dryer worked properly again! My neighbor met the Heating as well as Air Conditioning professional at my place because I was toiling, and she told me that it looked like a hundred pounds of lint came out of the ductwork when the Heating as well as Air Conditioning girl did the cleaning! She said it is a fairly regular thing with townhouses to need more frequent ductwork cleaning because the ductwork often has more twists and turns inside of it, and therefore the lint and dust gets trapped a lot easier.  

HVAC ducts

The call over the HVAC system

I travel a lot for my work.  Sporadically, I am only at my household a day or 2 before I go again for weeks at a time.  This schedule leaves my partner to handle everything at the household by herself. She normally does a very good job.  She must handle the kid’s college schedules, all the household stuff, all while working part time herself! It just so happened that I was on a single one of my trips last year when I got a call in the midst of the evening.  Now, normally, I just agree with whatever it takes to make things at the household go as smoothly as possible. This time, however, I was entirely not okay with what my partner wanted to do. She said that the cooling device had malfunctioned in the middle of the evening plus she wanted to call the Heating, Ventilation, plus A/C corporation to repair it right away.  I knew that an emergency call was legitimately pricey plus didn’t see why they couldn’t just go until normal business hours. After all, a/c is definitely not a requirement for living. It is still considered a luxury plus only those with certain medical conditions need it in order to survive. My partner was frustrated with me for asking her to arrange for an official appointment.  I believe it is because she is busy from all of her responsibilities plus I told her I would make it up to her when I made it back home. Maybe I will also purchase a portable Heating, Ventilation, plus A/C device as a backup for her too. This would at least provide her with some relief in the event that the HVAC device goes down again at a time when the Heating, Ventilation, plus A/C dealer happens to be closed.

a/c corporation

HVAC warranty

My mother is convinced that the warranty on anything is a conspiracy.  It seems that every time she purchases something, it fails, just after the warranty has expired.  There really is no worse feeling than calling a repair person, only to discover that you need to pay for the full repair.  They often even joke about the fact that if the item had broken a month or so ago, it would have been covered under the warranty.  This is definitely the last thing you want to hear. On smaller things, such as a toaster or something, it is legitimately no major deal.  They are easily inexpensive enough that you just go get another one. On major appliances, such as your stove, dishwasher, or even your Heating, Ventilation and A/C device, warranties are legitimately crucial.  The repair bills on these items can be especially fancy. One time, when she still had her old Heating, Ventilation and A/C device, she had to replace the A/C compressor unit and the repair estimate was awful. She decided that she would replace the A/C device instead.  That may sound severe to some, but, the new device is not only more efficient, it is under a multiple year warranty. Throwing all that money at an old HVAC system with an expired warranty just didn’t make any sense. None of the parts or work would have been covered and they could have found other issues once they started the job!  She is saving a great deal of currency in the long run. She has lower utility bills now and her annual service calls are covered as well. I legitimately feel that this was one of the best decisions she could have made.

Heating expert

All smart HVAC equipment

Have you ever heard of a smart home? I hadn’t until about month ago when my sister took me to her friends current home. She is a doctor and owns her own practice, so naturally she is a pretty wealthy lady  Anyways, we walk in the front door and everything is electronic. Her light switches weren’t switches anymore, they were on a small touch screen that you slide your finger up and down to dim or brighten the lights.  Literally everything else she needed to manipulate was on a big tablet. She had her pool and hot tub temperature settings, her indoor fans, her fireplace, TV and stereo, and she even had her HVAC settings on there! She had a small map of her entire home with the temperature of each room.  She could manipulate the hot and cold temperatures for each room via an electronic thermostat, it was pretty cool. She also could turn on the heating and cooling separately for each room. She could be heating a single room up while cooling down another. This was the most advanced zone control that I had ever seen.  Apparently this is very new technology and not a lot people have had it installed yet. But, I really wouldn’t mind having my HVAC and other appliances all controlled with one hand. Just being able to change the thermostat in each room, without being in that same room would be cool. One day, when the technology is more widely used, I will be investing in something like that! Smart HVAC technology, here I come!

smart HVAC