Posts Tagged ‘snow’

February is…replacement window season?

February 9, 2011
OK, the snow is piled up outside.  And the temperatures are low enough to frost your eyebrows.

Take a look at your windows.  Are they in rough shape?  Have you had a lot of condensation or frost on them this winter?  Do they feel cold?  Is the paint peeling?  Can open/close windows or storms? Do you simply feel uncomfortable when you’re around the windows?  You might be a candidate for replacement windows.

While many people wait until spring to start thinking about new windows, we actually install them all winter long.  And our customers barely notice we’re there during the project.  [True, we don’t like to do it during a blizzard!]  And we can certainly schedule around your needs.  But with order lead times, and the traditional Spring rush on the way, there’s no need to wait.

And replacing your windows can have a lot of benefits.  Newer windows can boost comfort, reduce maintenance hassle and expense, address lead paint issues, reduce fading of upholstery and carpets, eliminate the need for swapping storm windows and screens twice a year, and the list goes on.  And if you’re replacing you’re windows for any reason, choosing the right energy-efficient window AND installing them properly will help you save energy, too!   Choose the right window–and ENERGY STAR qualification is the minimum standard you should consider–generally windows that significantly exceed ENERGY STAR are readily available (including those that qualify for federal tax credits and state and local incentives) and make a lot of sense.

Note that regarding energy-efficiency, replacing windows is often one of the first things that comes to mind.  The reality is that replacement windows by themselves are often one of the least cost-effective things you can do to save energy–and “payback” can be 20-30 years or more.  Insulation, air-sealing, duct-sealing and lighting usually provide a lot more bang for the buck.  Most window installers probably won’t give you the real story on that!

Replacement windows can make a lot of sense.  They have a host of benefits.  Just make sure you chose the right windows for the right reasons.  And go ahead and save some energy while you’re at it.

Syracuse pounded by snow–and roof ice problems follow

December 13, 2010

Normally snowy Syracuse was hammered with snow over the past week.  And there’s more snow on the way.  The weather service has issued a lake effect watch, and estimates are as high as 2 feet of new snow by Thursday.

With the snow, comes the potential for big ice problems, icicles and ice damming.  And it’s started already, as evidenced by the pictures from Syracuse Advisor Ed Nedell.

We’ve discussed earlier about how poor air-sealing and insulation can lead to ice problems.  And we’ll renew that conversation.  Bottom line:   While nothing can totally prevent ice and icicles on your roof under these conditions, good insulation and air-sealing details can drastically reduce the problem. 

If you’re in Syracuse or central New York, and you’re experiencing this, you’ve got a clear sign that your home isn’t performing like it should, and the energy problems may lead to structural problems from ice damage.  Give us a call (315-474-6549) and we’ll get an Advisor out as soon as possible to help determine help to prevent this in the future.


Snowing in Syracuse

December 1, 2010

Cold.  Windy.  Snow.  Brrrr……

Gas Meter Maintenance 101

October 16, 2010

Your gas meter and above ground gas piping need to be kept in shape, just the same as your combustion equipment does. Luckily, in most cases, this is quite easy and requires only minimal effort on your behalf. Maintaining meters and piping is mostly about controlling the environment immediately surrounding them.

Don’t do anything stupid:

  • Don’t try to move your meter assemblage on your own. If you have a home improvement project that requires the meter to be moved, call your gas company and ask them to do it for you.
  • Don’t build enclosures, decks, porches etc. around your meter, as this could prevent first responders from accessing it in an emergency situation.

Keep your meter clear:

  • In summer, don’t let a jungle grow around your meter and don’t cover your meter with topsoil or other landscaping materials.
  • In winter, use a broom to remove snow from the meter, and remove icicles hanging over it.
  • If your meter becomes encased in ice call your gas company immediately.

Important Tip:

You never want your meter to be hit by a vehicle, so make sure whoever clears your snow in the winter knows of its location. If your meter is in a driveway it is wise to erect a barricade to protect it. Contact your gas company about barricade options that protect the meter without compromising emergency access.

It ain’t over ’til it’s over. Snow hits New England

April 27, 2010

As shown in this photo (which looks a lot like the picture out my window) and story from the Burlington Free Press, Vermont and elsewhere in New England are getting more of the white fluffy stuff.

At least it doesn’t usually snow in July.   Enjoying that insulation right now!

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