What is a Sump Pump in your Home?

sump pump

Do you have a sump pump?  Depending where you live, you may or may not. This is usually determined if you are in an area where flooding occurs. It could also be if you have issues with quick melting snow or heavy rainstorms. It does not take much water to cause thousands of dollars of damage, and if you have a damp basement, mold can be a serious problem. A good sump pump can be worth it.

What it is

Sump pumps are pumps that are located in your basement or crawlspace. They are designed to prevent excess rain or ground water from entering the house. There are portable units, but most residential ones are installed in pits, called sump pits. By doing so, they help keep your basement dry by pumping the water out of the pit, away from your house.

Location

A sump pump is typically installed in the lower part of a basement, or crawlspace of a home. A hole is installed in the floor, and the pump is then placed in the sump pit.  A pipe is attached, which then runs up, and out of the house, and releases the water several feet away from the foundation. The pipe usually has a check valve which prevents water from flowing back into the pit. When there is a flood, excess rainfall, or water from rapidly melting snow, this can result in damage. Instead of leaking into your house through any tiny cracks, it flows into the sump pit. Sump pumps are activated by a float. This looks like the one in your toilet tank. When the water in the pit assists in making the float to rise to a designated level, the pump is then activated.

How they work

Most pumps have a fan-like device, or impeller, which spins once the pump is activated. This uses centrifugal force, which pushes the water out through the pipe. If you are not sure if you need a sump pump, make sure to contact us. We can inspect your home and advise you on if one may be needed. When there is an issue, it is best to fix it immediately. By doing so, you can help save time, money, and stress in the long run.

Proper Maintenance in Winter

Keeping your home warm and comfortable in the winter is important. This should include regular maintenance of the furnace system. Having a dirty furnace can result in an unnecessary loss of efficiency and can damage the furnace.

Make sure to check the filter on a regular basis, and replace it when necessary. Dirty filters should be replaced to prevent equipment from working harder, which results in energy waste and possible internal damage. Inspect the blower compartment as well. You can use a vacuum to remove any dirt or dust from the filter. A clogged filter can result in improper performance and low-efficiency. We can also inspect the furnace and filter for you, to ensure it is as clean as possible. If you have pets or anyone in your family smokes, you may need to replace the filter more often. You can contact us and we can advise you on the proper schedule that would benefit your home and furnace. Also remember to remove clutter from around the furnace. Items stored near the furnace are a fire hazard. They may also obstruct combustion air supply. This could cause incomplete combustion and the production of carbon monoxide gas.

You will also want to listen for unfamiliar noises. Set the thermostat on the heat option and move the setting above room temperature. If you hear any new or odd sounds while the furnace is operating, there may be an issue. Poorly performing burners can produce unfamiliar noises. Also notice any unusual odors. If you smell anything unusual or a burning smell, it is an indication the system is not running correctly. This can even lead to further damage. You can also look for visible signs of a malfunctioning unit. This could include unusual amounts of moisture or dampness on the windows on the inside. You may also notice burnt components, or unusual dirt or rust accumulations on the vent pipe. If you notice an issue, make sure to contact us as soon as possible.

Cleaning the Ductwork this Fall

Just like replacing your furnace filter, air duct cleaning should be a part of your routine maintenance for any home containing a central air conditioning system, and there is no better time to have the ductwork cleaned than the later part of the fall season.

The air in your home could have pollutants because windows are often kept open at night to avoid running your cooling system. Increased foot traffic in and out of the home carrying with it air contaminants is also a reason. More time being spent outside means more time for you to accumulate contaminants that can find their way back inside your home and in your air duct system can lead to a decrease in air quality.

The fall is the best time to hire an HVAC contractor for air duct cleaning for a variety of reasons. The fall is typically a slow time for heating & cooling companies, which allow them to schedule dates much faster and usually offer seasonal discounted rates. With winter right around the corner, it is important to make sure any potential pollutants are removed so you and your family are not stuck breathing in dirty recycled air. This can often lead to health problems heading into the months where children and adults are much more susceptible to illnesses.

Many air duct cleaning also offer routine maintenance furnace tune-ups. Air duct cleaning can be a great opportunity to also have your furnace inspected to avoid potential furnace repair heading into the cold months ahead. Many factors go into your air duct cleaning cost, which can include the size of your home, layout of the ductwork, and also the amount of ductwork in your home.

If you are not sure if your home is in need of ductwork cleaning, there are some things to consider. If your home has pets, small children, anyone with allergies, or residents who smoke, duct cleaning is recommended. You can also contact us and we can advise you on if the ductwork needs to be cleaned.

The Benefits of Having Cleaner Air in your Home

Since you will probably spend a majority of time in your home this winter, it is important to have the best quality air. You will first want to make sure that the system has been properly maintained and is up to date on all repairs. If you ignore an issue or repair, you will be doing more harm than good to the system. This can also lead to other parts wearing and failing with time as well. Any odd noise you might hear should be a signal that the system is not working correctly. Anytime you suspect an issue, contact us. Even if the monthly energy bill has gone up, it could mean the system needs to be inspected or repaired. Make sure to remember when maintenance checks are in need, this can keep your system operating ideally.

You will also want to check the air filter in your home. As the air circulates, the dirt and dust from it can be captured into the filter. The filter will need to be changed in order to ensure that the air is the best quality. Remember to never operate the system without a filter. Failure to do so will result in parts becoming damaged from the dirt and dust. If you are not sure how often to change the filter, contact us and we can advise you on a schedule.

An air purifier may also be a necessity in your home. When this is installed, it will help clean the air in your home to keep you and your family breathing easier. If you are not sure of the type of air cleaner, we can certainly recommend one for you. Some homes benefit even more by having several placed throughout the home, and even in bedrooms.

 

 

Why Changing the Filter is Important

There are a number of different types of filters available on the market, each offering different benefits, but the fact remains that all types of filters need to checked, maintained and changed in order to function properly and safely.

First of all, a clogged air filter can cause extensive damage to your system. Checking the air filter can save you money in the long run. Dirt can be one of the leading causes of heating and cooling systems failing. So make sure the system is clean.

Changing the air filter is also important for your air quality. This is better for everyone in your home, particularly children and the elderly, and most especially for those suffering from allergies or asthma. A clean air filter means you are not constantly circulating dust, dust mites, pollen and other small particles in the air. Instead, your system will be able to purify the air, leaving it clean and healthy.

Besides protecting the HVAC system from unnecessary damage, cleaning out or changing a clogged air filter will also save you a significant amount on operating costs. In simplest terms, a dirty air filter uses much more energy than a new, clean air filter, which means a much higher electricity bill for you. You can, by keeping your air filter clean and in good condition, save up to 15% on utility costs.

An air filter that is clogged means a harder working HVAC system, thus it also means a lot of carbon monoxide and other greenhouse gasses by extension being released. Always remember to check or change the air filter when needed. If you need to know how often to change the filter, make sure to contact us and we can advise you on a schedule that is beneficial for you and your home.

Improve the Air in your Home

 

The air quality in your home is important for you and your family. Having the best air quality will help reduce systems of allergies and asthma. If you notice a breathing issue, it can lead to further issues. When your air quality is poor, chances are your health could decline as well. If you notice symptoms like sneezing and watery eyes, there may be an issue with the air quality. You can contact us and we can inspect the air quality for you and recommend what further actions should be done to improve it.

The filter is something you should not forget about. The filter can become clogged and dirty with time. This reduces the chance of air getting through it properly and efficiently. If you notice the filter dirty, make sure to clean it. Also remember to replace the filter on the necessary recommended schedule. If you have pets, you will have to replace the filter more often. If you are not sure how often replacing the filter should be, make sure to contact us and we can advise you on it.

To help keep the air clean, you may want to invest in an air purifier. By doing so, this will clean the air and other particles that might be there. Air purifiers take the air and remove the pollutants from it, and replace the clean air back in your home. If you want to know what type of air purifier is best for your home, contact us and we can recommend the options you have.

 

 

Keeping your Home Cool and Comfortable

 

HVAC units are not all about the cold or warm air that is pumped into your home. Whether you need air conditioning repairs or you want to install a new system, you want to be sure that you understand more about HVAC units and their options to be sure that you will get maximum value from the money that you are spending. From indoor air cleaners to solar heating and cooling to hybrid systems and more, you want to do your research to ensure that you will get what you want and what you are paying for. If you are considering purchasing a new HVAC unit or are thinking about repairing your own, you want to understand more about the systems in general. This can go a long way to allowing you to get the most value from the system that you choose, as well as get the system that you will be most comfortable with.

 

Ductwork is the foundation of any HVAC unit, unless you have a ductless air conditioning system, as it is the conduit in which your air travels from the unit into your home or business. Having the ducts in the right location in your rooms can make the difference between keeping your home cool during the summer and warm during the winter. Duct cleaning can keep these ducts efficient for your use and make sure that you have the best chance possible at keeping your home or business in a comfortable temperature zone.

 

The energy that your HVAC unit will run on is another decision maker that you will have to consider. Whether you choose energy-efficient boilers, a geothermal heating and cooling system, or a solar heating and cooling system, you will want to be sure that you consider your needs as your wants as far as energy usage. Whether you choose a system that will work entirely on alternative energy or you choose one of the many hybrid systems, you will find one that will work great for you.

 

Some optional things that you will want to consider in an HVAC unit are indoor air cleaners, in-floor heating, comfort zone finder, and more. While you may think that these are not necessary options, you may be surprised by how much that they can add to your home. Keeping the air clean can help to keep everyone healthier, while having a comfort zone finder can help you to save money on your electrical costs. If you are tired of your feet being cold when you walk around during the winter, in-floor heating may be something you want to consider. By thinking about your family and your life, you will be able to determine which optional features you want to include.

The Benefits of a Generator

 

There are several reasons why a generator can be installed on your house, no matter what age it is, would be a good idea for the future. By having a generator, you will be able to keep your home running in the time of a crisis or bad weather. If you have a generator, make sure to inspect it so it can operate efficiently when you need it to. You can also invest in a generator so that you will have one incase the power goes out. If you are not sure what type of generator is right for your home, make sure to contact us, and we can recommend one.

 

 

Even though there is the initial expense of the generator, that will pay for itself over the years as the power shuts on and off and you save in other ways. The first way is to think of the contents of your refrigerator and freezer. Having a standby generator to kick on when the power goes out will prevent any spoilage of the food. Therefore, since you do not have to empty the contents of the freezer or the fridge, you will save money. Restocking one or both can be very expensive and costly, especially if there was a large supply of meat on the inside. Another way generators save money is that if your own few lights, they will turn on during a power outage, then you can stay in your home. Even with minimal functions on, the house can be comfortable and lived in until the power comes back. Then there will be no expense for a hotel stay where the air is the right temperature and there are lights to see by.

 

Since the generator can run several functions through the house, then you can be comfortable. Your house will not be affected much because the generator will still run and power the air conditioning unit that will keep the house at a more comfortable level than if the power were to go completely off and leave you in the sweltering heat. The same is also true for the reverse conditions. Having a generator kick on during any electrical malfunction can also be a safety factor. No matter what type of device it is, with a generator on standby, then you know it will always work and be able to help your loved one, no matter if the real power is off for one hour or one whole day. If you need help deciding what type of generator is right for your home, make sure to contact us and we can recommend one based on your home.

Getting the Most out of your Air Conditioner

 

Most of the electricity used in the home during the warmer months is by the air conditioner. This is one area where homeowners can save money. By becoming aware of certain habits that need to change, the home will run more smoothly. The first tip for saving money is to choose the air conditioner size correctly. Sometimes, people think that bigger air conditioners will provide more home comfort and feel that it is the best for the home. This is not always true. Using an air conditioner unit that is too big for the home will not provide uniform temperatures or lessen humidification, so in this case, bigger is not necessarily better.

 

 

Placement of the thermostat and proper usage can help save money. Many times when people come home from work, they flip the thermostats to an excessively low level thinking it will make the air conditioner get colder faster. This is not true and can damage the unit and cost more money when the unit works harder to get to the low temperature. It will not enhance the air conditioning and repairs may be necessary from overuse. The placement of thermostats is another great factor to consider when saving money. It should never be located around warmer items, like televisions, lamps, or stereos. This could accidentally trick the thermostat into working harder than is required.

 

 

Another common mistake that wastes money is placing the air conditioner in a spot that collects heat. Just because there is an available space beside the house does not make it the best choice. Make sure that the unit is placed in a shady spot or else it will have to work harder than necessary. Being in direct sunlight hinders the unit from working properly. Similarly, you will not want to place it behind bushes or shrubs to hide the unit. This will obstruct ventilation and can clog the condenser coils so that repair is needed, along with making it less efficient to run.

 

 

If your home currently uses several window air conditioning units to provide home comfort, it would be less expensive to cool the area with ductless air conditioning. These units are revolutionary cooling solutions and situate in one or two story homes. Many homeowners are switching to the ductless air conditioning these days, due to the money saving factor of running traditional air conditioning units. If you have any questions about your current air conditioner, or if you are looking for a new one, make sure to contact us, and we can advise you on the options you have.

Why having a Dehumidifier is Beneficial

 

A dehumidifier may be the simple solution you are looking for to decrease the humidity in your home. If the humidity levels are extremely high or low, it can end up damaging your home. Mold and mildew will start to grow in extreme humid homes. This can result in breathing problems for your family. If there is an issue breathing, allergies, or asthma, make sure to check the humidity levels in your home.

With a higher humidity, comes the chance there is a higher chance for allergens and mold in your home. If you notice a humid home, consider getting a dehumidifier. This is the best way to make sure the levels are kept under control. The furniture and wood floors might also be affected by the humidity. They may start to warp or rot with the higher levels. If you notice an issue with your home furnishings, make sure to invest in a dehumidifier.

Many add a dehumidifier to their home for overall better comfort.  Air with a lot of moisture tends to feel much warmer than it actually is, and it will make the AC work harder. You may also notice an increase in your monthly energy bill as well. Dehumidifiers can help save you money, by removing the humidity from your home, and not needing to run the AC as often. If you notice an issue with the air in your home, or comfort level, make sure to contact us. We can inspect the HVAC system in your home, as well as advise you on the type of dehumidifier you may need. This can help you to have a cool and comfortable home this summer.