Posted on April 18th, 2019
Home Insulation Basics
The level of insulation in your home’s walls affects the amount of heating and cooling you need to stay comfortable. It does this by providing a resistance to the flow of heat (or thermal energy)
into and out of your house.
The resistance is called its R-value and the higher the value, the more effective the insulation is at keeping your indoor temperatures where you want it.
Hence, the decisions about what insulation to use, and what R-value you should have are critical and will impact the size of your equipment as well as the gas or electricity consumption
and cost. The long term operating costs must be weighed against the initial cost of the insulation.
The types of insulation depend on whether it’s new construction or whether you’re insulating an existing building.
Here are the main types of insulation used in home construction.
Insulating concrete forms (ICFs)
These are used for new construction or major renovations and additions. Typically found in unfinished areas like basements and foundations, these walls consist of interlocked hollow
blocks made of rigid foam. Concrete is poured into the spaces and the insulation becomes part of the structure itself.
Insulation board, or rigid insulation
This is usually made from polystyrene or polyurethane and is used in external walls, floors, ceilings, and roofs. It can be installed on the inside or outside of the main structure with gypsum
board or weather-proofing material over it. The advantage of board is that it can bridge thermal gaps created by structural frames and its R-value is high per inch of thickness. The main
disadvantage is that it is difficult to install in irregularly shaped locations where it leaves gaps.
Batt insulation is cheap and is usually placed between studs in walls and attics. It is relatively cheap and easy to install, making it popular for renovations and homeowners who want to do
the work themselves. It can be made from mineral wool, natural fibers or fiberglass.
For tight corners and areas where rigid or shaped insulation won’t fill, blown insulation is the best choice. It allows for insulation around obstructions and is installed using special equipment.
Blown insulation is not for do-it-yourself projects and must be done by a professional
The best heating and air conditioning system in the world is powerless against a poorly insulated home. If you need help with your home’s insulation for improved heating or cooling performance, give the Certified Comfort Experts at Western Heating & Air Conditioning a call at 801-515-2448 or chat with us online at TimeForComfort.com.
Posted on April 4th, 2019
4 Reasons to Tune-Up Your Heating and Cooling Equipment
When was the last time you changed the oil in your car? Probably when the manufacturer recommended, based on the mileage and time since the previous oil change. Your heating and cooling equipment should be no different. It might be stationary equipment, but it’s certainly not something you can set and forget. Maintenance is a must for your furnace and air conditioner, not an option. Here’s what you can expect from a tune-up:
1. A thorough inspection of the fan, burners, pulleys, belts, motors, heat exchanger and controls.
2. Burner cleaning.
3. Filter replacement if needed.
4. Lubrication of bearings.
5. Tightening of connections.
Reduce the risk of shutdowns at the wrong time
The first reason to keep on top of your HVAC equipment is to prevent a major catastrophe. Having no furnace in the middle of winter is like shutting down at the side of the highway. You never want to be in that situation. Preventative maintenance on your furnace reduces the likelihood of being left out in the cold.
Keep your equipment working longer
The harder your equipment has to work, the shorter its lifespan. As with any machine, wear and tear will take a toll. The inevitable shutdown happens much sooner if you keep pushing your equipment without proper maintenance. Regular tune-ups will lengthen your equipment’s life, saving you money.
Lower your energy bill
No matter what shape your equipment is in, it has to provide the same amount of heating or cooling on a given day. A unit in top shape will do so with less effort, using less electricity and gas to keep your home at the right temperature. A proper tune-up will allow your furnace or A/C to work without emptying your pockets to pay outrageous energy bills.
Keep your family safe and improve air quality
Furnaces can introduce deadly carbon monoxide into your home if not maintained. A cracked heat exchanger can allow combustion gases to enter the supply air. A dirty burner can result in incomplete combustion, which in turn increases the amount of carbon monoxide produced. A professional inspection and tune-up will prevent these situations from happening, keeping you and your family safe.
Getting it done
To keep your home’s air system working well, give Western a call and we’ll tune-up your heating and cooling equipment so you’ll be cool this summer and toasty in the winter! Call 801-375-COOL or visit TimeForComfort.com.