Save Now on a New Air Conditioner

Despite already having several months of above average temperatures this year, the summer isn’t over yet. Now there is a scary thought for you. Yes, we can expect at least another month or more of heat and humidity. So the question is, “How is your air conditioner working?” Is the system cooling your home well, or is your old unit having trouble keeping up? You’ve lived with the unit this long into the summer suffering in the heat, but you don’t have to suffer anymore!

Potential Savings Mid-Summer

For those of you who have systems that are not working as well as you would want. There are some incredible sales and deals this time of year. Those deals include manufacturer rebates, utility company rebates, and very aggressive pricing along with no interest financing options for as long as 60 months. Getting to take 5 years to pay off your unit makes affording a new air conditioner easy! So if you think this might be your time to look at making the move to a more efficient and reliable piece of equipment give your favorite HVAC contractor a call and schedule an in home estimate. With the new system installed you will be able to enjoy the rest of the summer in a cool and comfortable home!

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Why Should I Invest in a Wi-Fi Thermostat?

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past five years you have probably heard about programmable thermostats and the benefits they could potentially have for your home and your wallet. Unfortunately, very few people actually see the savings that a programmable thermostat can provide. Programming a traditional programmable thermostat is very tedious and if you don’t know what you are doing you might never figure it out. You are more likely to simply use the thermostat like a non-programmable digital unit because the programming is so difficult to set. However, programmable thermostats have been changing. Touchscreen capabilities coupled with Wi-Fi access is the new standard in programmable thermostat technology. Continue reading

Undercharged Air Conditioners Increase Cooling Costs

Cooling your home isn’t cheap. Every year the summer seems to grow hotter and hotter and the cost of electricity rises ever higher. If you want real relief from the heat the only real option you have is to suck it up and use the air conditioner regardless of the high costs you will have to pay later. What if you are paying more than you should? If you don’t have your air conditioner cleaned and assessed on a yearly basis, odds are you are paying more than necessary for the use of your cooling system. Dirt build up impedes energy efficiency, but many of these homeowners that don’t take care of their air conditioners have a much bigger problem lurking in their system.

Poor Maintenance Leads to Leaks

Poorly maintained air conditioners are far more likely to spring leaks than systems that are cared for regularly by a professional. Major Freon leaks are obvious and the air conditioner won’t work at all until the system is fixed. However, many air conditioners will develop small pinhole leaks that only allow a small amount of Freon to escape. These leaks can be far more costly and damaging to the air conditioner if they are not addressed early on. Continue reading

Summer Use of Natural Gas

During the summer months, natural gas use in the United States drops by about 30% when compared to the amount used during the winter months. The drop in use is mainly due to the furnace no longer being needed, but there are still other appliances that use natural gas, mainly the oven and the hot water tank. These appliances are still in use during the summer, and the electricity bill will see an increase from the use of the air conditioner. The mild winter has lead to predictions for an extra hot summer, so many of us will be bracing ourselves for painfully high electricity bills. We are all going to be looking for ways to save money, and cutting your natural gas costs even further is an easy way to do this!

Two Ways to Use Less Natural Gas

  • Minimize Use of the Oven: The over uses significant amount of natural gas every time you turn it on, but it also adds a lot of extra heat to the home. The air conditioner must remove this extra heat and it will consume extra electricity to do so. Therefore reducing use of the over is key to saving money! Move your kitchen outdoors this summer and use the grill instead! Many things that can be cooked in an oven can be grilled, and you will save money while enjoying the season as well! Continue reading

Suspicious Coupons may be a Scam!

It seems like every time you check the mail there is a new coupon from some heating and cooling company offering their services at a discount rate. Right now the big service that is being pushed is air conditioner maintenance, and if you care about the condition of your air conditioner, odds are you have this service performed every year. The economy has everyone looking for ways to save, so those coupons are going to catch your attention. Illegitimate HVAC companies realize your need to save, and use it to their advantage. Don’t fall for their cheap tricks, and you will put your hard earned money to good use instead of wasting it on an air conditioner maintenance scam.

Low Pricing Red Flags

As you collect your air conditioner maintenance coupons, take a moment to notice the difference between the prices from one company to the next. You will find that some companies offer prices in the 70-90 dollar range, and other will offer the same service for 20-30 dollars. How is this possible? Are the high end companies just looking to make a bigger profit? No, they aren’t, and they are not the scam artists in this situation. Performing a cleaning for 70-90 dollars is the lowest a company would be able to go and still pull a small profit from the service. The companies that offer the extremely low pricing are the ones that should raise red flags in your mind. Continue reading

Three Very Good Reasons to Replace Your Old Boiler

Boilers have been known to last much longer than the average furnace, but this isn’t necessarily something to take pride in. Sure, it is great to get the most out of your investment, but when the unit is going on 30 or 40 years of age, you may be pushing your luck. You could be heading for a very inconvenient breakdown or even a home disaster. At the very least you are probably overspending by hundreds every year on your energy bills just to operate that ancient artifact! Now may be the time to replace that boiler on your terms instead of waiting for the worst!

Plan Your Boiler Replacement Now!

  • Energy Inefficiency: Modern boilers are required to be over 80% energy efficient with the fuel that they use. This has been a somewhat recent requirement, and your old boiler probably has no hope of every reaching this level of efficiency even with the best maintenance. Older units are usually somewhere around 50-60 % efficient with the fuel they use and that is a huge waste. Think of the money you could save by simply upgrading to the new minimum! The higher the rating the bigger the savings and the faster you earn your money back! Continue reading

Added Benefits of Variable Speed Furnaces

Are you in the market for a new furnace? If so, you will quickly find that there are a number of choices and options to choose from when finding the perfect unit for your home. When you have to keep a budget in mind, there are some options you may be tempted to go without, however, there are some that shouldn’t be left behind. Choosing a furnace that has a variable speed motor is one such option that should not be overlooked. These units may be slightly pricier, but they will often save you more down the line.

AFUE Ratings Aren’t Enough

Most HVAC salesmen will push AFUE ratings as the selling point of any furnace. Sure AFUE is important, but it doesn’t take into account the amount of electricity the furnace will use as well. AFUE ratings are simply a measurement of natural gas use efficiency, but when you consider that electricity is more expensive than gas in most areas of the country, it is important to consider this cost as well. Continue reading

Invest a Little, Save a Lot!

In the Chicagoland area, surviving the summer months is often possible even without the benefits of an air conditioning system. The number of hot days is significantly smaller in comparison to cold days during the winter months, and there is always other ways to cool off the home that don’t involve using an air conditioner. During the winter, we don’t have much choice but to invest in heating our homes. Many have taken to creating “energy efficiency funds” that are to be used to make energy efficient improvements to the home.  Even if you have not been saving specifically for this purpose, odds are your funds are a little short this winter season.

An Easy Do it Yourself Project

Not making the home more energy efficient isn’t much of an option, but what if you could invest only a little, but save a lot down the line on your energy bill? Sounds too good to be true right? Well, if your home is lacking in proper insulation, adding insulation to the home will require only a small investment but come with a big return! You could even do the project yourself and save even more money! Simply take a peek in the attic and measure the number of inches you have of insulation. If it is below 14 and you live in Chicago, you need a fresh layer. Continue reading

Setting Your Thermostat and Saving Money

If you do not have a programmable thermostat you might want to think about getting one after you read this.  A programmable thermostat is a wonderful money saving device to have.  It allows you to set different temperatures at different times throughout the day.  We all have very busy lives whether we work for a living at a 9 to 5 or as a stay at home mom or dad. We are lucky if we have time to get everything done during the day and therefore, worrying about what temperature the thermostat is set at is not something at the top of our list of to do’s.  However, not monitoring the temperature that this device is set at could be costing your extra every month on your energy bills!

The Convenience of a Programmable Thermostat

A programmable thermostat could take this concern off of your plate completely because it is able to remember to adjust the temperature for you! During times when you need less heating or cooling, a programmable thermostat can be set to more energy-saving settings. For example, when your home is empty during the day, the temperature doesn’t need to be set so high. Program the thermostat to set it back at least a few degrees and then program it to warm the house up about an hour before you get back home. Every degree makes a difference, and this can save the average household 10 percent on yearly energy costs. Continue reading