Archive for the ‘Homeowners’ Category

Do you drive with the windows down or blast the AC?

June 12, 2014

This summer you might be spending some time on the road.  It’s a great time to vacation.  Seeking fuel efficiency in your vehicle means going easy on the pedal, but how do we keep cool on the hot summer road trips?  Do we drive with the windows down or blast the AC? Road Trip Efficiently Apparently keeping your windows down is more efficient  than blasting the AC.  We can safely argue that it is not as efficient as keeping the windows up and not using the AC.   I wouldn’t recommend this for a summer trip unless you want to know what that bug feels like under the magnifying glass! Cranking up the AC at home means comfort of course, and for some it’s a matter of health and safety especially when it gets hot.   We wouldn’t think of not using the AC when the temperature is soaring outside, but like your car, you can run your home more efficiently. How?  Keep your AC tuned up!  Regular maintenance helps avoid unexpected repairs.  While you are at it, tune up your house too.  Recommendations from an energy audit help you keep the cool where you want it, inside and the hot where you like it, outside.  In fact air sealing and insulation improvements can reduce the amount of cooling you need. Thanks, Jason Photo from Nicholas A. Tonelli under  creative commons license

March Madness and the Final Four

March 10, 2014

BasketballMad as a March Hare? We tend to get a bit cagey at the end of the winter ready for spring to well, spring. At least there’s college basketball! It’s great to see these teams move their way through the roster towards April, warmer weather and the Final Four!
Guard against foul weather and center your home with the slam dunk of comfort, efficiency, health and safety. It’s what every home should be!

Thanks,

Jason

A Healthy Heart is like a Healthy Home!

February 7, 2014

Heart disease is a significant issue for many Americans and encompasses a number of conditions.   The American Heart Association is a great resource to start with if you have concerns.  February is American Heart Month and you may ask what that could possibly have to do with a home.  heart

Where do you start when it comes to a healthy heart? Your doctor is a good place.  Being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease means a change, but it is change you won’t be working at alone, that’s why we visit one doctor for physicals and see a specialist if need be.

We take the same type of scientific approach to diagnosing homes and making recommendations.  We start out as a general practitioner would in your home looking at everything.   When we find something that needs special attention we can bring in the specialists.   It might be the ductwork or the cooling system.  Maybe it’s the insulation in the attic.  But you won’t know until you get that physical and you won’t get better until you take action!

We know Home is Where the Heart is and this month help yourself and your family to a check up for your heart’s sake and also for your home!

Thanks,

Jason

Ways to Save on Heating Costs

December 19, 2013

One of our newest locations, Buckeye Heating and Cooling, was featured on the news in Columbus Ohio.   Technician Jeff Walsh spent some time performing a home energy audit and using the infrared camera.  Nice work Buckeye Heating and Cooling!  I think central Ohio just got a little warmer!  Not in Ohio, find a location near you!

You can view the Buckeye energy audit video here.

Thanks,

Jason

Better late than later! It’s time again to think about a furnace tune-up!

October 22, 2013

You should get your furnace (or boiler) checked at least once a year (more if you burn oil) to make sure that it is operating safely and efficiently.

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An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure as they say.  Preventive maintenance can help ensure that your furnace runs when it needs to.  You would be surprised how many service calls we get in the northeast on the first cold days of the year.  There is a spike in calls when we experience a deep cold snap too. This of course is not the time you want your furnace to go down!

By the end of September in the northern US, many contractors start getting backed up with service calls as you may have discovered if you tried to schedule one in the last few months.  As you head south, that shifts from October to even December (OK, Palm Springs doesn’t get backed up in heating season, which is why I for one, hope to visit!).

Get that furnace tuned-up BEFORE heating season kicks in and if it has in your neck of the woods, before it really gets cold!

Thanks,

Jason

 

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Doing Your Part for the War on Uncomfortable?

October 16, 2013

These government posters from WWII urged homeowners to do their part, but I think they still apply today, maybe a little differently though.  The War is against inefficiency and a fight for comfort.

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Vacation at home if you like, and make sure you and your dog are comfortable.   Maybe what you save from the travel can go towards comfort improvements at home.  Plan for winter now, I like that any time is a good time to winterize or summarize your home.

Carpooling is great, especially if you get to use that special lane on the highway!  Sharing resources is a good idea and so is reducing your fuel use.  It doesn’t mean we need to sacrifice though.  Home Performance is fighting the good fight right here on the Home front.

Take action, stay cool, stay warm, stay comfortable!

 

Jason

Equipment: Reach for the stars!

September 18, 2013

I’ve been talking about the demonstration home at one of our locations lately, and ASI installed some great upgrades including a high efficiency water heater and HVAC system, Energy star appliances, and LED lighting.  We’ve discussed many of these things in the past because they make sense, especially when electric rates can be high.

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It’s a great idea to reduce the wattage of lights but who wants to read in the dark?  Lighting is like comfort, you don’t need to compromise in order to be more efficient.  When it comes to lighting, Lower wattage CFL’s and LED’s allow us the best of both worlds just like high efficiency equipment.  As an added bonus, the LED lighting that we install has a life of over 50,000 hours. That’s a lifetime for most people.

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They say HVAC is the heart of home performance and good equipment goes hand and hand with good buildings, these are stars that are both within your reach.

Thanks,

Jason

 

Home is where the Heart is: Helping a home, Helping a Family

September 9, 2013

I often make the parallel between the “health” of our homes, to the health of ourselves.   A cooling or heating system can be like our hearts, and the ductwork like the arteries branching out.   The need for a physical, making sure things are working fine, applies to our homes.   Our bodies are systems and so are our homes, its the treatment that makes a difference.

Albritten’s choice for the Home Energy Makeover is particularly touching because they have helped a family battling with health problems, a family with more than their fair share on their plate.

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Steve and Rhonda live with four of their six children, in a home built in the 1950’s. Their son 28-year old J.J. is special needs with both physical disabilities that keep him in a wheelchair, and cognitive disabilities.  AC and heat are important for them because of his and the entire family’s comfort and unfortunately it has not worked for some time.

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Steve, battles with a rare type of cancer referred to as carcinoid, and has injections every two weeks.  He still continues to go to work even though he spends time in the hospital when his symptoms worsen.  In fact Steve, not in the pictures, was hospitalized on the day the Makeover was announced lasting a few weeks.  Providing for his family is clearly important.

This Energy Makeover has allowed Allbritten to provide something for them which serves well as a reminder for all of us to take care of our families, ourselves and to lend a hand in helping others.  Now that is having a healthy heart!

Thanks,

Jason

Home Energy Makeovers and Hard Choices, the Good Kind!

August 29, 2013

Our good friends at Allbritten Plumbing Heating and Air, a GreenHomes location in Fresno CA, had to make some hard decisions this summer, but doing the right thing was not one of them.  After receiving well over 100 nominations for a Home Energy Makeover they offered, the hard part was picking just one.

Every year this location gives back to their community.   Employees take part in cleaning up a park or volunteering at a food bank, and are proud to do so.  This year, an installer suggested doing what they do best and offering their services improving a home for a family in need. Manager Andrea Doidge describes it as “a community service project on steroids”.

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They discovered there were quite a few families making hard choices at home. And it really is a great service to offer since summer in the area can really be difficult.  “With all the cooling stations set up around the Valley often being full, and with times still being tough financially for many local families, keeping homes cool in the triple digit heat can be difficult. We are excited about the chance to really make a difference in one family’s lives,” said Jerry Unruh, president of Allbritten.

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One great thing about all of all of this is letting people know about the kind of work many of us need in our homes, and that it’s not only attainable and affordable it just plain makes sense.  Energy Upgrade California offers great rebates making this work more affordable in across the state but other states offer rebates too.  Having your home assessed and most importantly, improved isn’t a hard choice at all it’s a great thing to do!

In upcoming posts, I will tell you more about the family that was chosen and the great work done on their home.

Thanks,

Jason

 

pictures by Gary Kazanjian – from the Fresno Bee

 

Taking a home for a test drive

August 21, 2013

When you shop for a car, you can see it on the lot or the showroom floor, same goes for most retail things, new clothing, or a book. You can even find a modular home on a sales lot, but it’s still difficult to see what comfort or efficiency looks like.  Or, what kind of savings there are to be had for a homeowner and their existing home.

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Well the team at ASI Hastings Heating, Air & Solar in San Diego has created a showcase home to help spread the word about the huge energy incentives available to homeowners in their area as well as the great things that can and should be done in every home. ASI converted the garage into a hands-on “Innovation Center” to help homeowners get a clear understanding of how they can make similar upgrades to their home.

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“We invested in the home to prove just how much savings a homeowner could receive,” explains Ken Justo, co-owner of ASI Hastings Heating and Air. “The home has undergone a full remodel inside and out. We are extremely proud of the outcome. People can actually see these upgrades in a real life setting; improvements that the average homeowner can also make.”

Over the next few weeks I will talk about what they did and why it’s so important for you to consider improvements like these in your own home.

Thanks,

Jason

 

 

 

 

 


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