Seven Ways to Reduce Air Conditioning Costs

Air Conditioning – Seven Ways to Reduce Costs

A research by The U.S. Department of Department of Energy stated that air conditioning take approximately 43% of a home’s monthly bill. To reduce the cost of utility bill, below are few techniques to achieve this

House Shading

The truth of the matter is that the accumulated heat found in a home comes directly from the sun. This is mainly through windows and the roof. However, did you know that planting leafy trees or bushes around your air conditioning unit will help increase your AC’s efficiency up to 10%? At the same time, these leafy trees will also shade your house from the sun. This information was provided by The U.S. Department of Energy.

Window Tinting & Protection

air conditioningMesh-like windows or solar screens can intercept heat from the sun by up to 70%. For this window tint and protection to be effective, it is advisable to install on windows located on the east and west sides of the home.

If you cannot afford to install these tints, then you should consider using window films as alternatives. They are transparent as well as metalized. Because of these properties, they will reflect heat before the heat and rays make their way through to the house. The only limitation to this is that, one has to shut the windows for the film to work efficiently.

However, the solar screens offer double the power to keep the sun away from the house. They also have the power to keep away insects out even if windows are opened.

Increasing The Thermostat If Not at Home

At any time when you are not at home, you should consider setting increasing the thermostat. However, if you are at home, you should reduce the thermostat settings to around 78% when at home. During the night, you should also raise it to warmer temperatures. With this technique, you are surely going to save cash by about 5% to 15%.

Taking Advantage of Fans

For an air conditioning to cool your house efficiently, you will need to take advantage of fans. As such, you should consider placing them on the upper parts of the house as well as opening the windows on the lower levels. If you are leaving in a one-story apartment or house, you should close windows around the fan as well as open windows in rooms that are far from the fans, according to the same Department of Energy report. It is advisable to have the windward windows opened as well.

Reduce The Use of the Stove During the Day

During the summer, you should consider limiting the use of the stove during the day. The aim is to reduce indoor heat. This technique will help you reduce the cost of utility used by the AC. You should consider using a microwave instead for heating foods. At the same time, eating a cool salad is also an option.

If you must cook, then you should consider doing this at night, but make sure you have cooked a lot more food for tomorrow. At the same time, if you must cook during the day, then you should consider turning on your kitchen exhaust. If you are taking a hot shower, you should consider turning the bathroom exhaust fan on.

Replacing Old Air Conditioner

If you have an older air conditioning, then it is time to consider replacing them. Due to advancement in technology, today ACs are designed and manufactured to be efficient. With this technique, you will be in a position to save about 50% of energy. As such, you should consider looking for a high-energy saving AC. Keep in mind that the higher it is rated by the EER, the better it is.

AC Speed Reduction During Humid days

You should consider setting the air conditioning fans at a high speed during low humid days and at low speed during high humid days. The aim is to control the level of humidity at home for comfort purposes.

How to Purchase a Furnace

How to Purchase a Furnace

According to, replacing your central heating system’s old furnace with a newer and more efficient model can help to offset energy prices that are volatile. In addition to saving money, the furnaces available these days pollute less and raise your comfort level through producing heat on a steadier basis compared to old furnaces. The common heating fuel for furnaces is gas and we will be focusing here on gas furnaces in this article.

Obtain Estimates

In order to receive the best deal that you can, give a minimum of three contractors a call and ask them for written estimates.

Size Matters

The specifications of your furnace needs to fit your requirements. If a furnace is too small, then during very cold weather it won’t be able to keep your home comfortable.

furnaceTo avoid this, in most homes the furnaces are larger than what is necessary. This strategy has a few drawbacks to it. First of all, there is the initial cost. Also when a furnace is too large it will have a tendency to cycle on and off too frequently. This may cause uncomfortable variations in temperature, waste energy and put more wear and tear on the components. A larger replacement furnace may need larger ducts as well. Air flow might be noisy if the ducts are not the right size.

In order to ensure a proper installation and correct sizing, a reputable contractor should be hired who will take the time to accurately calculate what your heating needs are by following an industry standard like the Air Conditioning Contractors of America’s “Manual J HVAC Residential Loan Calculation.” These equations take several factors into account, including your home’s construction, design and size as well as the climate. After the furnace has been installed, it should be maintained on a regular basis according to the recommendations provided by the manufacturer.

Efficiency Matters as Well

Currently gas is the most common type of heating fuel. Gas is used by a majority of modern central heating systems. How efficient gas is converted into heating energy by a furnace is reflected in its AFUE (annual fuel-utilization efficiency) rating, measured in terms of a percentage. A higher rating means the furnace is able to wring more heat from each gas therm. Fewer emissions are generated by efficient furnaces, so your decision might also be influenced by environmental considerations.

Over the years, furnaces have become increasingly energy-efficient. A gas furnace built during the early 1970’s had a typical AFUE of around 65 percent. For new gas furnaces, the lowest efficiency that law allows is 78 percent, and there are some new models that are able to achieve nearly total efficiency of up to 97 percent.

The cost of a furnace tends to increase at its fuel efficiency increases. A furnace that has an AFUE of 90 percent may cost $1,000 more than a unit of similar size with an AFUE of 80 percent. However, the additional cost can often be recouped through having lower fuel bills over the furnace’s lifetime. How long it takes to recover our investment cost will depend on other factors in addition to AFUE. Electricity needed for running furnaces with various AFUE can be significantly different. Your payback time can also be affected by local electricity and gas rates, how well your house is insulated and the climate that you live in.

Four of the Most Popular Air-conditioner Types

Air Conditioner Four of the Most Popular Types

In comparison with units made just a few short years ago, air conditioner nowadays are not only easier to install and maintain they are also much quieter and energy-efficient.

Here are the four main air conditioner types. their pros, cons and prices:

1. Window Mounted

This is the most common air conditioner choice which is a unit that is window mounted. These are temporarily slid into the openings of double-hung windows. You can either purchase a cooling unit alone or a cooling as well as heating unit which can be used to warn the home during the winter season.


Inexpensive, easy to install and general work well with the electrical wiring in most homes.


Their design is generally only for double hung windows. If you reside in the North, it is recommended that at the end of the season the units be removed.


For cooling a one hundred square foot room you are looking at under $100. If you need to cool a two hundred to five hundred square foot room you will pay around $400. If you are looking to cool as well as heat a seven hundred to nine hundred square foot room, then you will pay around $800.

2. Wall Mounted

air conditionerBy attaching a metal sleeve through a wall and from the inside sliding in the AC chassis these air conditioners are permanently mounted in the wall. A wall mounted unit can be purchased for cooling only or for cooling and heating options.


Aesthetically pleasing, a tighter fit then a window unit, no need to store, if you need to replace or repair or replace them it is not difficult. If the room you are installing it in only has one window you will not be blocking out the sunlight.


The installation can be a bit pricey. An outside wall will have to be cut to make an opening and you may have to install a dedicated 220-volt line if you are installing a larger unit. Generally, the metal exterior sleeve is not included with most models shaking up an additional $50 to $100 and the time spent looking for the piece.

To cool a four hundred to seven hundred square feet room you are looking at around $400. If you are looking to cool and heat an one thousand square foot room you will pay around $700.

3. Window / Wall Mounted

This type is quite versatile being as it can either be installed in a window or mounted permanently in the wall.


This is a great choice for cases in that a installation lets say in a rental room may be temporary and you can later remove it and have it installed in your home.


These window or wall models don’t usually come with the window installation kits such as the frame, bolts and nuts needed in order to secure the unit in the window. You may need a dedicated 220-volt circuit, this will depend on the type of plug you have an / or the amperage.


In the same price range as a wall mounted model.

4. Portable

This is an air conditioner on wheels, it is mobile meaning you can roll it into one room and then into the next. It does come with a tube which exhausts the heat and can be easily placed outside a window or a designated hole in the wall.


Makes for easy storage when not in use.


A bit more expensive than window units. Takes up floor space and every time you move it you have to install the exhaust tube.


To cool a one hundred and fifty to three hundred square foot room you are looking at paying around $700. To cool of a five hundred square foot room, it will cost you around or even over $1000.

What’s the Best Heating System for My Home?

Heating System – What’s the Best for My Home?

There are a lot of different ways that you can heat your home. You may just find yourself asking the question what’s the best heating system for my home? This is a good question because every form of home heating has its advantages and disadvantages Electric heat tends to be expensive, wood is inexpensive but tough to make heat efficiently and solar heat only works when the sun is shining. So when you ask yourself what’s the best heating system for my home the answer should be an HVAC heating system. Here are the many reasons why this is true.

heating system

It’s efficient

Years ago forced air furnaces were not rated so efficient and they would tend to waste a lot of the gas or oil that was burned in them to produce heat. That is no longer the case as far as today’s modern HVAC systems are concerned because they often have efficiency ratings that are higher than 90% these days.

Ease of use

The heating is conveniently controlled from one central location. With just the simple adjustment of a thermostat you can raise and lower the desired temperature throughout your entire home.

Provides exceptional comfort

Forced air provides a very comfortable heat. It fills the rooms it goes into evenly and completely. There are no cold pockets throughout the room and there is no need to sit close to the vents to stay warm.

Durable heating

There are very few appliances that are made that go as long in between repairs and last as long as HVAC heating systems. They often have very long warranties attached to them too and because of this it will provide you with a lot of peace of mind that you have made a good investment.

They look great

With a heater that is part of your HVAC system it is hard to tell they are even there. The only thing that is visible in the living space of your home is the vents that the forced air heat comes out of. Other heating systems have visible apparatus in the room to distribute the heat to those rooms.

It helps clean the air in your home

The air that flows through the system passes through filters in the system at least once. Depending on the quality of the filter it can make a big difference in the quality of the air you breathe in your home. For example, a good HEPA filter can help allergy sufferers by cutting down the amount of dust, pollen and pet dander that is present in your home’s air.

Now that is a lot of good things about this one type of heating system. That is what makes them so hard to beat for being the best type of heating system as opposed to the other types of heating systems that are available. So the next time you ask yourself what’s the best heating system for my home; without any hesitation you should say a heater that is part of an efficient and convenient HVAC system.

What’s The Best Air Conditioner for My Home?

Best Air Conditioner – What’s The Best for My Home?

These days’ people have a lot of choices when it comes to wanting some air conditioning to cool their home. You can go with several fairly inexpensive window units, add a few mid-level priced split air conditioning systems or go with the old faithful which is an air conditioning system that is part of an overall HVAC unit. You may ask yourself then, “What’s the best air conditioner for my home?” The answer would have to be by far the air conditioner that is part of your HVAC system. Here are the reasons why you should feel that way

best air conditioner


Since an air conditioner that is part of your HVAC system is located outside of your home it does not affect the looks of the interior of your home at all. It also uses the same existing and hidden ductwork that your furnace does. This means there is no visible air conditioners hanging out of your windows and there is no visible air conditioners hanging up along the walls in your rooms. There are no more aesthetic looking air conditioners than those that are part of your existing HVAC system.


Even though air conditioners that are part of your HVAC system are not inexpensive to run you do get the most out of them when they are running. They are built to be very efficient these days and you get a lot of cooling power for the money you spend to run them.

Comfort level

Forced air simply cannot be beat as a method to move cool or heated air to the rooms in your home. It tends to fill the rooms it goes into completely and does not leave hot spots or necessitate you sitting right next to the cooling source to be comfortable.

Ease of Installation

If you do not have an air conditioner as part of your home furnace system then adding one is pretty easy. It uses the same ductwork as the furnace uses to bring heat to your rooms so there is no additional work needed here. All that the installation requires is setting the unit outside your home and then bringing the ductwork and electrical supply to it.

Fast Cooling

Since this type of air conditioner is part of an overall HVAC system it uses forced air to distribute the cool. Yes, the same forced air that fills the rooms throughout to make them comfortable also makes them cool in a very rapid manner. An air conditioner that is part of your HVAC system will cool your home much faster than any other type of air conditioning by far.

On an extremely hot day there is no such thing as a bad type of air conditioning system but if you are truly asking yourself what’s the best air conditioner for my home; then an air conditioner that is part of your central heating and air system is by far the best choice. If it fits in your budget there simply is no better choice for sure.

How to Find a Quality Plumber

How to Find a Quality Plumber?

There are a lot of pipes, fixtures and other types of plumbing that run all through your house. These things are used as often as anything you own because of the amount of water your family goes through on a daily basis. Given this fact it is no wonder that it is inevitable that you will have problems with your plumbing once in a while. When you have a problem with your plumbing you may wonder how to find a quality plumber? The plumbing professionals at came up with the following list of ways to find a reputable plumbing company to come to your home and make the plumbing repairs that you need.


Ask your family and friends

Everybody needs plumbing repairs from time to time so make a call to your family members and friends to see who they used to do their plumbing repairs for them. Ask them what was good about the company and what was bad. Also ask if they were happy with the repair that was done and if they felt they paid a fair price. There really is no better place to get an honest opinion than one that comes from a trusted friend or family member. It’s one of the best ways to learn how to find a quality plumber.

Look at a contractor reference site

There are sites on the internet that specialize in finding information out about contractors to determine which ones are good and which ones are poorly rated. Check the internet for these sites and see how the reviews are for any contractors that you were thinking about using.

Check with the Better Business Bureau

This is a great place to reaffirm a decision on a contractor you may want to hire. If your particular contractor has several bad reports with the Better Business Bureau it is probably a contractor you want to think twice about before hiring. Be careful to judge a contractor too harshly because of one or two bad reports because no company can satisfy everyone. Also a company that has no reports does not necessarily mean they are a good

y either.
Search the internet for references

Just like you searched the internet for sites that specialize in evaluating contractors you can also search for reviews of contractors that you want to hire. Good and bad news about a contractor spreads fast in this day and age of World Wide Web. It’s a great way to find out what someone liked about a particular contractor and to also find out areas that a plumbing company could stand to improve upon. So use the internet for the valuable knowledge resource that it is.

So now you know all the tricks on how to find a quality plumber. Use one or all of these methods in your search for a plumber and you are guaranteed to find one that has great customer service and does good work. It is the only sure way to know if a plumbing contractor does good work or not before it’s too late.

How to Find a Quality HVAC Contractor

How to find a quality HVAC contractor

Maybe you are building a new house and looking to buy an HVAC system for it or looking to replace your old HVAC system with a new one. That means you will need to find a good HVAC contractor That is not always an easy thing to do because there are so many out there and not all of them do a good job or know how to treat their customers. So then how do you know how to find a quality HVAC contractor?

Here are some suggestions.

hvac contractor

Ask for References

One great way to find out if an HVAC contractor does a good job or not is to talk to customers they have done work for. They were once in your shoes looking for a contractor and they can tell you all the good and bad things about working with the contractor they chose. People tend to be very open and honest when giving there opinion about contractors who have done work for them in the past; especially the ones who were not satisfied with the work they had done. Just remember when doing this that a company is probably only going to refer you to their most satisfied customers.

Word of Mouth

Maybe you have some family members or friends that have gotten some HVAC work done. They are a trusted source for telling things about a contractor without sugar coating it. Ask them who they used and how such things as the sales portion of the experience went and the installation of the HVAC unit. Be sure to ask them about what they specifically liked about the company they used and what specifically they did not like about them. You will get no more honest opinions than those that come from your family members and friends.

Search the Internet for Reviews

There is no better way to find out about an HVAC contractor in this day and age than by checking for sources on the internet. There are usually a host of reviews that can be found on a contractor if they have been in business for a while. Don’t just read one or two reviews in order to learn how to find a quality HVAC contractor; you have to read several reviews to get a good feel for how well they take care of their customers.

Check a Reference List

Internet sources like ‘’ specialize in keeping track of all different kinds of contractors and they will have several HVAC contractors listed too. Read the good and bad points about each contractor in order to best figure out which one you want to hire. Be wary not to consider a contractor who has only one or two bad reviews, nobody can satisfy every customer.

If you learn these suggestions then you should have no problem figuring out how to find a quality HVAC contractor. Don’t just hire the very first contractor you talk to. The good ones are out there so take your time and find one who works hard to establish a good reputation for themself.