Posted on December 31st, 2019
Benefits of a Smart Thermostat
If you lived in the era before the invention of thermostats, you would have to go to the boiler and manually adjust the heat output every time it got too hot or too cold. Thanks to the thermostat, you can set it and forget it. Most of the time, anyway. There are some limitations to thermostats, even programmable ones.
Nowadays, you have the option of installing a smart thermostat to deal with some of those shortcomings. Here are some benefits of smart thermostats that make it almost a no-brainer for your home.
Smart thermostats learn your patterns and some monitor the weather to adjust set points accordingly. This means that instead of constantly tweaking the thermostat because you’re too hot or cold, the adjustments are carried out to maintain your comfort levels.
Energy use monitoring
One of the features of a smart thermostat is the energy use report that shows you how much you are consuming and how that changes over time. It allows you to assess your habits to find ways to save energy based on your needs and lifestyle.
Reduced energy use
The energy report is one tool that helps you save energy by allowing you to change habits. The other feature that smart thermostats have is the ability to use your patterns to know when to reduce heating and cooling while you’re away or asleep. This setback function saves you energy while you go about your daily routine.
Better performance from HVAC equipment
Smart thermostats allow your HVAC equipment to work at optimum efficiency and to reduce the time they run at full capacity. Overall this extends their lifespan and saves on energy and maintenance.
Remote monitoring in case of equipment failure
If you’re away for the holidays and your furnace falls, you don’t have to wait until you walk into a frozen house to find out. Remote access to your thermostat allows you to see if anything goes wrong so you can take steps to prevent a major disaster.
When you combine lower energy consumption, improved equipment performance and reduced maintenance, you have a recipe for cost savings. The initial investment for a smart thermostat pays for itself while you experience increased control and comfort.
If you want to upgrade to a smart thermostat, give the professionals at Western Heating & Air Conditioning a call at 385-273-3200 or visit us at www.WesternHeatingAir.com and we can help you benefit from this great technology.
Posted on December 21st, 2019
Joy to the world! The holiday season is upon us, bringing chilly weather and the seasonal spirit along with it.
If you haven’t scheduled your annual HVAC preventative maintenance check yet, you might want to soon.
Otherwise, you may find your season isn’t as cheery and bright as expected.
HVAC repairs and maintenance typically cost between $100 to $150 an hour. If it’s an emergency in the middle of the holidays, this cost can skyrocket. There’s also the chance you might find yourself without heat while friends and family are trying to celebrate the season with good cheer.
To ensure your system works year-round, you need HVAC maintenance. Keep reading to discover the benefits of scheduling your maintenance check every year!
Once you do, you can celebrate the season without worry!
1. Reduce Emergencies
What if you’re hosting a dinner party and your HVAC breaks down? Maybe you’re running late for work when it happens. Either way, there’s never a good time to need HVAC repairs.
You might also have a difficult time calling in a repairman when the appointment is last minute.
Instead of waiting for the worst to happen, schedule your HVAC preventative maintenance ahead of time.
Scheduling an annual checkup will help you avoid costly repairs. Instead, you can maintain your unit so it doesn’t crash unexpectedly. If repairs are necessary, you can schedule them on your schedule instead of when the timing is at the worst possible moment.
2. System Longevity
Scheduling HVAC preventative maintenance every year can increase your unit’s lifespan. Without proper maintenance, however, the unit will overwork itself. This can lead to the very repairs you’re trying to avoid.
A new system can also cost thousands.
Instead of paying for a new unit at the last minute, make sure your existing unit lasts.
Think of annual preventative maintenance like an annual checkup. The HVAC technician can take a look, note any problems, and suggest changes. Then, you can keep your system healthy and working at its best for an extended lifetime.
3. Healthy Air
Every day, we breathe in dust and other indoor allergens without realizing it. These often include:
- Pet dander
- Dust mites
- Cigarette smoke
These allergens can cause dozens of respiratory issues and harm your family’s health. For example, these allergens can irritate a family member’s asthma.
When you leave your HVAC unit unchecked or fail to replace your filters, these airborne pollutants will start to fill the air.
Improve your home’s air quality by calling an HVAC technician. They can check for these allergens and professionally clean your air ducts. Regular HVAC maintenance will also ensure your unit is working to limit these allergens.
Once your vents are clean and well-filtered, fresh air can pump through your home again.
4. Lower Utility Bills
In 2017, the average residential monthly electric bill was $111.67.
When you fail to clean your filters, your HVAC unit has to work twice as hard to push air through the system. As a result, this cost will slowly start to rise.
Annual preventative maintenance will ensure your unit is working at its peak efficiency. When your unit is working properly, it won’t have to use as much energy. As a result, you can cut your energy bills and start saving money.
Without AC preventative maintenance, however, your utility bills will only continue to increase.
Carbon dioxide is an odorless, poisonous gas. Without you realizing it, this gas can invade your living space when it’s not properly venting out of your home. Older furnaces that aren’t regularly maintained are also likely to produce additional carbon dioxide.
If not vented properly, this could put your family members at risk.
It’s important to schedule your annual HVAC maintenance to avoid this issue. Then, a technician can check to confirm your gas is venting and burning properly. After their checkup, you’ll have peace of mind that your home is safe for family members and guests.
You expect your HVAC unit to keep your cool in the summertime and warm during the winter. When you neglect to schedule regular maintenance, however, your system won’t work at its best. As a result, your system might fail to keep you and your family members comfortable.
You might find your system doesn’t produce and distribute air evenly and steadily throughout your home.
If the system isn’t working properly, it might not respond to the settings on your screen, either.
Many people take HVAC preventative maintenance for granted until it’s too late. Instead of waiting for your unit to leave you chilly through winter weather, schedule a checkup. A technician can clean your ductwork and take other preventative steps to make sure your unit is working as it should.
7. Help the Environment
If you’re worried about your green footprint, make sure your HVAC unit is working properly. Otherwise, it could consume more fuel than necessary, which can hurt the environment.
You can speak to your HVAC technician about a programmable thermostat or switching to a natural gas system. Both steps can help minimize your impact on the environment.
8. Peace of Mind
Investing in regular preventative maintenance for your HVAC unit will also give you peace of mind. If something goes wrong, you’ll know you’ve already taken steps to make sure your unit is working at its best. When sometimes does happen, it will end up minor compared to the larger problems you avoid through preventative maintenance.
9. Warranty Requirements
Most HVAC manufacturers require evidence you’ve scheduled your annual maintenance check before you can make a claim. By keeping up with your HVAC checkups, you have an insurance policy in place.
Clear the Air: 9 Reasons You Need HVAC Preventative Maintenance
Now that we’ve cleared the air, when was the last time you scheduled your HVAC preventative maintenance? By scheduling an annual checkup, you can prevent disasters before they strike.
That means celebrating the holidays without a hitch, too!
Ready for your checkup? Schedule your HVAC preventative maintenance appointment today!
Posted on December 17th, 2019
How To Prevent Cold Spots in Your Home
There’s nothing like being inside your toasty house during winter while the wind howls outside and the snow accumulates everywhere. But if there’s a cold area that sends shivers down your spine, your home has a heating problem that needs to be addressed.
Here are some reasons why you need to put on your parka indoors even when the heat is on (and how to fix it).
Your furnace is undersized
If your furnace is too small, the heat won’t reach the areas furthest away. The first step when dealing with cold spots is to ensure your heating equipment can handle the coldest nights. Have a professional review your home’s construction and calculate the correct size for your furnace, especially if you’ve recently added a room or two.
Your system needs to be balanced
If your furnace is the right size and you still have that cold room or corner, your system may not be balanced to provide the right amount of air to each grille. Have your distribution system assessed to make sure there are no obstructions or leaks and the system is properly balanced.
Your windows are leaky
This is a common reason for cold spots. Air from outside enters your home through small gaps around your windows and will give you a ghostly draft, especially when the wind blows. You also waste energy trying to heat the cold air that enters. Seal around your windows and doors to keep warm air in and cold air out.
Your heating equipment needs to be repaired or replaced
If your furnace’s fan is dirty or your burner isn’t working, you won’t get enough heat for your whole house. After years of use, your furnace’s performance will drop, leaving you with less heat while consuming more energy. If your heating equipment is past its life span, consider upgrading to a new, more efficient system to take care of your home (and save on heating in the process).
Your furniture is blocking airflow
Sometimes the solution to a cold spot is simply to rearrange your furniture. If you block vents or radiators, the air won’t flow freely to heat your home. Think carefully about how you lay out your room to make sure you’re not shivering while your armchair heats up.
If you have cold spots at home and you need help with your equipment or distribution, give us a call at 385-273-3200 and we can make your entire home toasty warm this winter. Take advantage of our New Year Special! Our air flow specialist will inspect your home and offer solutions for just $49 ($89 value). Visit www.WesternHeatingAir.com for more information.
Posted on December 17th, 2019
Spread the Holiday Cheer this Christmas!
Holidays can be chaotic and stressful as you search for the perfect gifts, plan family visits and prepare your home for guests, which may include getting your furnace tuned-up… if so we are here for you! In the midst of that, it’s important to take time to focus on spreading joy. Here are some ways to extend holiday cheer this season.
Visit the poor and sick
Throughout the year, those less fortunate can get forgotten. Visit a hospice, orphanage or volunteer with an organization that helps the poor. Who knows? You might find your new year’s resolution while putting smiles on faces.
Feed the hungry
Donate to your local food bank or volunteer at a soup kitchen to bring food to those in need. Boxing Day, the day after Christmas, was traditionally the day for “boxing” leftovers and giving to the poor. Consider doing your own version of this tradition.
Christmas is a depressing time for many. Some may have lost loved ones around this time, others may be lonely. Caroling in your neighborhood brings music of hope and joy to those who need it most.
Reach out to someone who hurt you
You don’t have to reach out to strangers to bring cheer. Extending an olive branch to someone who hurt you in the past can bring forgiveness and joy to that person. Even the attempt to mend a broken relationship can bring joy to you as well.
It’s easy to get caught up in life’s dramas and forget that others are lost in their own darkness. Be a light to someone who needs it and you’ll discover your own light shining brighter.
Do a favor for a stranger
Pay for the next person’s coffee, carry someone’s shopping, or help a young mother distract a wailing toddler. The options are endless as you go about your daily tasks.
Donate to charity
Instead of buying the most expensive gifts for everyone on your list, consider holding back some cash and donating extra to your favorite charity. You can even make it your family’s tradition to give extra during the holidays.
Spend extra time with your family
Surprise the kids with one on one time or a special outing. Sneak away early one afternoon to bake cookies or to take a walk in the snow. You’ll boost your family’s joy and make memories they’ll talk about for many years to come. Regardless of your plans for the season, may you and your family have a joyful Christmas spreading cheer.
From our family to yours, Merry Christmas! – Ryan and Angie Snow, Western Heating & Air Conditioning
Posted on December 6th, 2019
This was a special week for a deserving family in Springville. Amy Sherman was surprised early Wednesday morning by Western Heating & Air Conditioning and FM100, when she learned she was the winner of the Gift of Heat – a brand new furnace! Her daughter, Whitney, had nominated her for the furnace, and was so excited when her mother was chosen.
In the past four years, Amy has undergone 11 surgeries in and recently came out of a coma. Her home has been without heat for over a year. With all the medical bills piling up, the family simply couldn’t afford to have their 26 year old furnace looked at, so they used space heaters to warm their home. Not only do space heaters eat up energy, they can be dangerous, and don’t provide adequate warmth for a recovering patient.
“To know that my family will actually be warm and that my family won’t have to use space heaters means the world to me,” said Sherman. “I never thought anything like this would happen to us because we have terrible luck. This is great! This a turnaround for us.” You can watch highlights from our experience here.
Western Heating & Air Conditioning has been giving the “Gift of Heat” to deserving families for the last 4 years. Owner Angie Snow said, “This is the best thing we do all year. We love to be able to give back to a community that has given so much to us.” Her husband, and co-owner, Ryan Snow added, “When we find families like Amy’s, it makes it all worth it! We just love giving back.”
In the upcoming years, Angie would like to build this program by enlisting the help of additional sponsors so they can warm more homes and hearts. To find out more about the Gift of Heat program or to be involved in helping additional families, you can contact Western Heating & Air Conditioning at 385-515-2448 or visit www.WesternHeatingAir.com.