Programmable Thermostats Can Save You Money All Year
When looking to save money on energy costs most people begin by looking at price of more efficient heaters and air conditioners. One device that can be overlooked is the thermostat. A poorly functioning thermostat can be a real culprit in sabotaging your attempts to save money in both the summer and winter.
Reduce Your Energy Expense from 15 to 30 Percent with a Programmable Theromostat
When looking at your HVAC system and what you can do to reduce your cost, consider a programmable thermostat. These devices can be used to reduce your energy expense by anywhere from 15 to 30 percent or more. There are many options available in programmable thermostats and a Lorain county HVAC contractor would be glad to go over what features would be best for your home.
Programmable thermostats can be set for weekday use and then be set to change for your weekend use. Some of these thermostats actually can “learn” how your energy levels are different from what has been programmed in and adjust the settings. Most have an easy override button if you are faced with extreme changes in weather and want more heat or air conditioning for a day or so.
Now some of these devices can be adjusted when you are not even home. Computer programs or even a smart phone application can allow you to adjust the temperature in your home from virtually any location. The differences and extra features that are available will be information your experienced HVAC contractor can readily provide.
It may be that your current system isn’t really in need of an upgrade or repair to make a difference in your energy consumption. The programmable thermostats that are getting smarter all the time may be your best and least expensive way to control your home’s energy cost.
The heat of the summer will be here before you know it and for many Lorain County residents that means much higher utility bills. While that cool air inside your home feels wonderful after coming in from the heat of the great outdoors you know that the warmer the weather becomes the higher your utility bill will climb.
Fortunately there are a few steps that are easy to implement that can help to save you a substantial amount of money on your utility bill as the temperature outside begins to climb.
Make Smart Cooling Decisions
Sure it feels great to walk into a home that is completely cool following a long day, but if no one is home during the daytime hours you are wasting plenty of energy cooling an empty home. It’s not necessary to turn your AC unit off before you leave in the morning, but turning the thermostat up a few degrees while no one is home is a great way to save some green. Even turning your thermostat up 5 degrees during the day while no one is home can make a substantial difference in your monthly expenses.
If you’re the type of person who will never remember to manually make the necessary adjustments to the thermostat in the morning and evening, consider purchasing a programmable thermostat Having a programmable thermostat lets you set your desired time for temperature adjustments so that your family is always comfortable but that you still benefit from lower monthly bills. A Lorain County HVAC professional can install an affordable programmable thermostat for you that will pay for itself in no time with the money you’ll save on utility expenses.
Summer is almost here! Make sure you sign-up for an A/C Peformance Check today!
Next Time – Using Window Treatments and Covering to Bring Down Cooling Costs
If you’re a responsible Lorain County homeowner, you probably schedule furnace and air conditioner performance checks with your trusted Lorain County HVAC professional every year. Knowing that, as the old saying goes, “an ounce of caution is worth a pound of cure,” you’ve learned that regular annual maintenance will ensure that your heating and cooling systems run problem-free and at peak efficiency all year round.
To help Lorain County homeowners keep their homes in peak operating condition, Raymond Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning will be giving away a FREE Plumbing Performance Check to two lucky Facebook fans every month. Winners will be randomly selected on the 15th and 31st days of each month and announced on the Raymond Plumbing Facebook page. Our plumbing performance check includes:
- A performance test of all toilets, faucets and garbage disposals;
- Inspection of all drains, water valves and supply lines;
- Inspection of your water heater and pipes; and
- A check of various other plumbing features that may be found in your home.
After completion of the plumbing performance check, the homeowner will receive a written diagnostic report of the findings pinpointing any maintenance or repair problems that may be required to maintain the integrity of the home’s plumbing system.
Savvy Lorain County homeowners realize that you shouldn’t limit annual home inspections to your furnace and air conditioner. Having an experienced Lorain County plumber inspect your plumbing system once a year can save you hours of misery and hundreds, even thousands of dollars. During a home plumbing performance check, small plumbing problems can be spotted and corrected on the spot before they become big, expensive disasters. Don’t let that happen to you. Schedule a Raymond Plumbing Performance Check today and become Raymond Facebook fan for a chance to win a free Plumbing Performance Check.
Columbia Gas is offering a bargain basement price on professionally-performed home energy audits that usually cost $150 or more! For the low price of just $50 ($20 for income-qualified residents), Lorain County home owners can schedule an energy audit of their residence with a specially-trained energy conservation professional and find out how to improve the energy efficiency of their home and decrease their natural gas use – and their monthly gas bills -- by as much as 30%!
During your home energy audit, the auditor will examine and test your home’s heating and cooling systems and pinpoint any areas where your home is losing energy. At the completion of his inspection and tests, the auditor will present you with written recommendations for increasing the energy efficiency of your home. Your personalized energy report will include the estimated energy savings of each recommended improvement, as well as the cost to make each improvement and information about applicable manufacturer, state and federal rebates, tax credits and other offers that can drastically reduce purchase and installation costs.
As a bonus, Columbia Gas will refund your entire audit fee if you make just one of the improvements recommended by your home energy auditor. Lorain County residents who make energy improvements to their homes will also receive a $250 cash back rebate from Columbia Gas. That’s money in your pocket now and every time you open your gas bill!
Lorain County residents are urged to act quickly to allow plenty of time for the purchase and installation of money-saving home energy improvements. Contact Raymond Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning today to schedule your Columbia Gas home energy audit.
It’s much easier to create an energy-efficient home from the bottom up than it is to give an older home a “green” make-over. When the “bones” of a new home are completely exposed during the construction process, before the wallboard gets nailed on and the siding covers the construction studs, it’s a fairly simple matter to add energy-efficient insulation to the walls and roof. Before concrete floors are poured is the best time to install radiant heat pipes to keep floors toasty. It’s easier to set solar panels into the roof and wire them to storage batteries before the shingles are added. Installation is less complicated when solar water heaters and money-saving heat pumps are designed into building plans. Selecting energy-efficient windows, doors, appliances and heating and cooling systems before the walls go up allows consumers to choose from a wider array of Energy Star products.
As anyone in the construction trades knows, it’s always easier to build it right the first time than to try to remodel a building that wasn’t designed to accommodate new technology. The problem is that majority of American homes were built well before new energy-efficient technologies were even developed, much less available to the housing industry. The owners of older homes are left with few cost-effective means to green their homes:
- Replacing outdated heating and cooling systems, water heaters and home appliances with energy-efficient models; and
- Adding energy-efficient technology via remodeling projects.
Costs and practicality often limit what home owner’s desire to what is structurally practical. Despite the challenge, many owners of older homes recognize the value energy efficient improvements offer the planet and their family budgets!
Next time: Practical tips for greening older homes
Across Ohio, rows of reflective solar panels are replacing green-tasseled corn stalks as new solar farms gradually encroach on land traditionally planted in agricultural crops. Ohio is at the forefront of the new push to develop energy-efficient alternative energy and is quickly becoming a mecca for solar power initiatives.
Two Spanish companies this week announced their intent to build a massive solar farm near The Wilds wildlife conservancy southeast of Zanesville. Estimated to cost $250 million, the solar array will contain 239,400 solar panels and, once it becomes operational in 2014, generate nearly 50 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 25,000 homes. The project is expected to create 600 new manufacturing and construction jobs in Ohio. While the deal has not yet been finalized, American Electric Power (AEP) has agreed to invest $20 million in the project and purchase electricity generated by the solar farm during its first 20 years of operation. AEP already purchases solar-generated electricity from a smaller 12-megawatt solar farm operating in Wyandot County near Sandusky, just southwest of Lorain County.
In 2008, Ohio passed a law mandating that 25% of the state’s electricity be produced by alternative energy sources by 2025, including 0.5% from solar power. It’s been the impetus driving government and public facilities and commercial businesses to invest in alternative energy. New state buildings incorporate solar panels, herbaceous roofs and other green technology to reduce energy use. Central Ohio auto dealer, Byers Automotive Group, has constructed a 55-foot wind turbine to power showroom and car lot lights. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium’s newest exhibit, Polar Frontier, uses a geothermal system to heat and cool its new polar bear habitat.
Lorain County homeowners can reduce their own carbon footprint and save up to 80% on their heating and cooling costs by installing geothermal heat pumps and water heaters in their homes. To find out more, contact Raymond Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning.
Healthy Indoor Air Requires Proper Ventilation
Energy efficiency is a good thing. It saves money while protecting the environment. But there are times when energy efficiency can go a little too far. There have been cases of new energy-efficient homes that were sealed so tightly against outdoor air that they became germ factories or “sick” homes. Homeowners traded off low fuel bills for high doctor bills. What researchers discovered is that healthy homes require a certain amount of air exchange – fresh air replacing used, stale air – to maintain the health of their occupants. When a home is too tightly sealed against air exchange, air is circulated over and over, constantly reused, spreading germs, mold and other unhealthful qualities. Healthy indoor air requires proper ventilation.
To solve the problem, the heating and cooling industry has developed energy efficient ventilators that bring fresh air into your home without any loss of energy. Performance Heat Recovery Ventilators introduce necessary outdoor air into your home during the long heating season. These energy-efficient ventilators replace stale, germ-laden, recirculated indoor air with fresh, clean outdoor air. Bringing fresh air into your winter home also replaces some of the humidity forced air heat removes from your home. Higher humidity is easier on stressed winter sinuses, making breathing easier and actually protecting delicate sinuses from infection. Proper winter ventilation boosts indoor air quality and creates a healthier indoor environment for your family.
During the summer cooling season, Performance Energy Recovery Ventilators perform the same service. When you operate your air conditioner, these high efficiency energy recovery ventilators guarantee that the air you breathe is healthy while you are indoors escaping from summer’s heat. Ventilators that work with your air conditioner not only provide a healthy exchange of air that reduces indoor air pollutants, they reduce humidity as well. In summer, reducing humidity increases indoor comfort for your family.
Making a ventilator part of your home comfort system is like being able to open a window in every room even on the hottest or coldest days ... without the drafts, the humidity or the high energy costs. Its literally a breath of fresh air. For proper sizing and operation, Performance Ventilators should be installed by a heating and cooling professional. If you live in Northeast Ohio, contact Raymond Plumbing.
Get with the program! Maintain a comfortable home and save money at the same time with a programmable thermostat. Set the times for your air conditioning or heating to turn on and off based on a pre-set schedule.
In the summer, you can keep your house warmer than normal when you are away and lower the thermostat setting only when you are at home and need cooling. You can follow the same strategy in the winter by setting the thermostat back 10 – 15 degrees when you are not home or sleeping. This will save you a significant amount of money on your utility bills.
When you program your thermostat consider your schedule. A programmable thermostat can be set to begin its cool down well before you leave or go to bed and return to its regular temperature two or three hours before you wake up or return home. Although thermostats can be adjusted manually, programmable thermostats will avoid any discomfort by returning temperatures to normal as you wake or return home. Also consider the location of your thermostat. You want to make sure your thermostat is away from direct sunlight, windows, skylights, doorways, and drafts for efficient performance.
At Raymond, we offer a variety of different thermostats that fit your needs. A qualified Raymond technician can evaluate your home to determine what type of thermostat best fits for your needs. Stay comfortable when you’re home and save money when you’re not. Remember, you can save more money by registering with Raymond here.
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When the temperature outside begins to climb, many people seek the cool comfort of indoor air conditioning. But A/C does more than just cool your home and improve your comfort.
Here’s what A/C can do besides just cooling your home:
Keep you safe. Without air conditioning, you are more likely to open your windows for air circulation. Leaving your windows open for a long period of time allows easy access to your home and can become a security threat.
Even second floor windows, left open all day can be a risk. And not just from theft, but from animals too. After the first time a squirrel comes in through your window, you’ll want to keep it shut.
Air Conditioning works best when the windows are closed and therefore provides protection to help keep your family and home safe.
Improve air quality. Fresh air is nice, but it also circulates allergens, viruses and bacteria through your home. All of these substances can impact your health and make breathing harder and affect your quality of life. Air Conditioning can help eliminate these triggers and keep you healthy all summer long. No need to use more allergy medicine than you have to.
Help you sleep. Getting a full night of restful sleep, without interruption, allows your immune system to work at its best. While temperature isn’t the only factor in your sleep habits, it’s definitely a key one. Air conditioning will keep your comfort level perfect, so you won’t toss and turn all night.
Be efficient. Centralized units are the most effective way to deliver cool air to all parts of your home. The cool air travels a direct route through the air ducts and vents into individual rooms and hallways. In addition to the superior efficiency, central A/C makes less noise inside than window A/C units.
There are many factors that can affect what type of air conditioner you will want. Everybody's home is different. A qualified Raymond technician can evaluate your home to determine what type of system is best for you. If you have additional questions or are in need of a professional plumbing, heating or cooling services, contact us.
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