Is Geothermal Heating Right for Me?

September 28th, 2015

Geothermal heating is an exciting alternative to traditional forms of heating. It uses a physical constant to provide warmth for your home: once you get more than a few feet below the ground, the temperature of the Earth never changes. A geothermal system simply runs a series of tubes below the ground on your property, then pumps a mixture of water and anti-freeze through it. The mixture facilitates a heat exchange with the ground, allowing you to warm or cool your home by drawing on an infinitely renewable natural resource. Geothermal heating can save you a great deal of money over the life of the unit, and a lot of Portland, OR residents will appreciate its environmentally friendly format. That being said, there are some factors involved which you should consider carefully before pulling the trigger. “Is geothermal heating right for me?” you ask. Here are some things to think about. Continue Reading

How to Prepare Your Heater for Fall

September 21st, 2015

The summer is coming to an end here in Portland, OR, and while we may have a few more hot days to come, you’re going to start using your air conditioner less and less and your heater more and more. Now is the best time to get your heater prepped for fall, when temperatures are still warm. A little care and forethought can make a big difference this winter, both in terms of monthly heating costs and in terms of reducing the risk of breakdown. Here’s a few tips on how to prepare your heater for fall. Continue Reading

Alternative Types of Air Conditioning

September 14th, 2015

With summer finally coming to an end here in Portland, OR, you might be looking at replacing an old, malfunctioning air conditioner with a new unit. Now is the perfect time to do it, when you have months of cool weather on the way to set a schedule at your leisure. But just because you’re replacing your old air conditioner, that doesn’t mean you need to install a new one just like it. There are several alternatives to the traditional central model available, and while they don’t match the needs of every home they can be quite a boon when they do. Here are several alternate types of air conditioning to think about when preparing to replace your existing unit. Continue Reading

How Does Relative Humidity Affect My Home Comfort Levels?

September 7th, 2015

If you’ve watched the weather on the TV news, you may have seen the term “relative humidity” used, and wondered what it is. It’s a term used to describe the amount of ambient moisture in the air, measured as a percentage. If the relative humidity stands at 0%, there’s no moisture in the air at all. If it stands at 100%, you’ve basically got rain. Most of the time, it falls somewhere between those extremes, though in Portland, OR, we trend on the humid side. But that number can have a huge effect on your home comfort levels, and if you allow it to remain unaffected, you could end up paying a steep price. Here’s a quick breakdown on how it works, and what you can do to solve it. Continue Reading

Why Does the SEER Rating in My Air Conditioner Matter?

August 31st, 2015

There’s a lot of technical specifications on your air conditioner to denote how well it does its job. But the one laymen should pay the most attention to is the SEER rating, which stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s a handy number designed to tell you how efficient your system is, and conversely, how much it saves you money when doing its job. That is a huge consideration here in Portland, OR, where hot days demand an efficient system. Why does the SEER rating matter? Here’s a quick breakdown of how it works. Continue Reading

How to Select the Right Air Filter

August 24th, 2015

Almost every centralized heating and air conditioning system comes with a filter, designed to strain out the dust and dirt circulating through your home. There are numerous different types of filters you can install in your home – above and beyond the types specific to your particular air conditioning system – and with dust and pollen counts here in Portland, OR, they should probably be cleaned or replaced several times a year.  Selecting the right air filter is very important as a homeowner: something that can do the best possible job without working against your best interests. Here’s a few tips on how to select the right air filter. Continue Reading

Don’t Wait to Get Your Air Conditioner Repaired

August 17th, 2015

When late summer hits Portland, OR, a lot of homeowners are more willing to let minor air conditioning repairs sit until the fall arrives. They reason that they can hold tight until they no longer need their air conditioners on a daily basis, instead of taking it offline for a day or so while the technician fixes the problem. It may seem like sound reasoning, but in fact it can make an already difficult situation much worse. You may think you can live with a minor air conditioning problem, but don’t wait to get your air conditioner repaired. Continue Reading

3 Reasons to Have Your Home Radon Tested

August 10th, 2015

Household nuisances come in all shapes and sizes: anything from leaky rooftops to dents and dings in your ductwork. But few of them are as hard to spot, or can cause the most potential damage, as radon. It’s a gas created by the breakdown of uranium in the soil: naturally occurring, but dangerous nonetheless. Here in Portland, OR, qualified professionals can test for radon in your home and help mitigate it if they find it. Here are 3 reasons to have your home radon tested today. Continue Reading

What Causes Restricted Air Flow in Your Air Conditioner?

August 3rd, 2015

Your air conditioner may be perfectly good at cooling the air, but that doesn’t mean much if it can’t circulate the air through your home. In centralized systems, cool air is distributed through your ductwork via a fan to all the corners of your home. But when the air flow is restricted, that can’t happen. Your air conditioner thus needs to spend unnecessary energy to properly cool your home, and wear and tear on individual systems increases: raising the chances of a major breakdown as well as increasing your monthly bills. With summers becoming increasingly hot and humid in Portland, OR, a repair session is the last thing you need. So what causes restricted air flow in your air conditioner? Here’s a list of the most common culprits. Continue Reading

What Steps Are Involved in an Air Conditioning Maintenance Plan?

July 27th, 2015

If you own an air conditioner – and living in Portland, OR, you likely do – then it behooves you to schedule a maintenance plan at least once a year and maybe more often than that. These tune-up sessions will help prevent possible breakdowns by spotting big problems while they’re still small. In addition, a maintenance plan will help lower your monthly bills by helping you air conditioner function more efficiently. If you haven’t scheduled a maintenance session in a while, you should do so immediately. It will help it perform better and maybe cut down some of those high energy bills for the rest of the summer. Here’s a brief outline of the steps involved in an air conditioning maintenance plan: Continue Reading