Helter Swelter: How to Stay Cool When the AC Conks Out
Life happens. Sometimes appliances – including air conditioners – just conk out for no rhyme or reason. Whether it’s a power grid outage, a faulty wire connection, or a plummeting meteorite just happened to crush your outdoor condenser unit. The reason why an air conditioner stops running in the middle of a heatwave matters little; what does matter is finding a way to alleviate the discomfort that sweltering temps bring. When hot spells roll in, HVAC companies get swamped wit
Ancient HVAC, Part II: Cooling Ancient Rome
According to The Old Farmer’s Almanac, the approaching Dogs Days of summer cover the span of 40 days between July 3rd and August 11th.* Chances are good you’ve always assumed this period was referred to as the “Dog Days” because any hound worth her salt can be found chilling in a cool, shady corner until the swelter has passed. But it turns out there’s more to it… Assuming you live in a northern latitude, step outside at dawn this time of year and just above the horizon you c
Central A.C. Explained with Words We All Understand
Have you ever stopped and pondered all the conveniences we utilize every day, seemingly with the touch of a button? You turn on the faucet and instantly water appears. You tap a few keys on your laptop and suddenly your video conferencing with someone on the other side of the globe. With a turn of the ignition, a car can transport you distances in one day that 200 years ago might’ve taken weeks. And then there’s air conditioning; without it, places like Las Vegas or Phoenix m
Joining the Workout from Home Movement? A Few Tips!
If you’re considering dumping your gym and working out at home, you’re part of a growing movement. With the explosion of online fitness platforms, streaming workouts, remote coaching, professional-quality home gym equipment, exercise apps and wearable technology, a home gym makes getting into shape and staying in shape easier than ever. Whether you’re planning on creating the perfect space for yoga, barre, Pilates, weight lifting, treadmill running or a fancy connected exerci
Are Smart Vents a Smart Idea?
Smart appliances are everywhere. We use them for everything. There are now smart refrigerators, smart trash cans, even smart litter boxes! I’m beginning to feel like Elroy Jetson. So, I wasn’t surprised when I came across a few articles in various tech publications that were touting the latest generation of smart air vents being manufactured. Full disclosure: we ran a blog about these gizmos a couple of years ago, but has our opinion changed after reviewing the latest models?
Is Duct Cleaning a Scam?
Recently a friend of mine whose opinions and recommendations I value — on anything from movies to marriage to motor oil — told me he had just had his home’s air ducts cleaned. In fact, he couldn’t stop raving about it. He claimed he’s never breathed easier, the air is fresher and he regrets not doing it years ago. I politely nodded and tried to change the subject. Working in the HVAC industry, I’m no stranger to the debate on duct cleaning. Debate? Yes. The fact is, empirical
October is Bat Appreciation Month
Bat-proof your home to protect yourself and our winged friends. Does the sight of a bat send shivers down your spine? Or are you thrilled knowing that a single brown bat, one the most common bat species in North America, devours 1,200 insects an hour? Hopefully, you’re in the second category. Be a bat lover! Bats get a bad rap. Not one of them has ever actually been found to be Dracula. And our only flying mammals eat so many insects that they’re essential to controlling the
After the Storm Blows Over: Assessing HVAC Flood Damage
Conventional wisdom by HVAC experts dictates replacing an HVAC system after damage from a flood. But conventional wisdom doesn’t know your situation or budget. The main factor to consider for most people is cost - as in, I really don’t have an extra five to twenty-grand burning a hole in my pocket type of cost. The potentially good news for those affected by the recent floods is there might be federal assistance to make the decision easier. Money or low-interest loans ar
Top 10 HVAC Fails
What follows is just a sampling of some of the funnier HVAC “hiccups” that we’ve come across on the web in the last few months – unless, these particular systems belong to you (in that case, we apologize.) Enjoy! Fail #1 Courtesy of hvac-hacks.com Why bother to fix a problem when you can just warn the next guy to proceed with caution? Fail #2 Courtesy of hvac-hacks.com We’re not sure if this is actually an HVAC system or post-modern art. Fail #3 Courtesy of hvac-hacks.com Qui
Is Your Programmable Programmed?
According to Energy Star, approximately 45% of a typical home’s energy consumption is relegated to heating and cooling - roughly $2,100 to $2,500 per annum. Not exactly chump change. Suffice to say, some of that energy, in the form of hot or cold air, gets lost in the cracks, literally. That is, tempered air escapes through gaps around door jambs and window sills, via roofs and floors, heating or cooling unoccupied areas, etc. There’s no shortage of ways for air to escape, an