How To Conserve Heat in Your Home

Staying warm in the winter helps us to feel cozy and comfortable. Here are a few simple and useful ways of staying warm even when the mercury dips below freezing. For example, making use of space heaters in the rooms that are most frequently used is a great way to take the load off of a main heating system or furnace. In many instances an inexpensive space heater can actually be more efficient that a typical central home heating system. This is particularly true when heating a very small space.

Putting Your Home Heating System on Autopilot

In addition, enough cannot be said about the advantages of using a programmable thermostat in your home. This is a completely automatic way of putting the entire house heating system on autopilot all day long. It will reduce the temperature inside during the evening hours while you sleep, and will take the pressure off in terms of you always having to adjust the temperature manually. Best of all, it serves to substantially decrease energy consumption by in many cases up to 25%. It is also recommended by experts to keep temperatures as steady as possible throughout the day.

Reduce the Workload

Wide swings in temperate can result in a system working much harder to maintain optimal temperatures all day long. The idea here is reduce the workload on the system as much as possible. This not only, as mentioned, reduces energy usage but it also helps to extend the life of the equipment. This means you heating system will last longer and that repairs will be less likely. Speaking of repairs, always have your system routinely inspected at the very minimum once every two years, where annual inspections are even better.

Dissipate Through the Ceiling and Walls

Equally important is to get into the habit of reversing ceiling fans in the winter. When you do this you are in effect allowing the fan blades to draw down heat that is hanging out up around the ceiling. As everyone knows, heat rises and this is just a very inexpensive way of recycling this heat to your benefit. It makes sense to access this unused heat, as it will likely dissipate through the ceiling and walls otherwise. Finally, if you have a wood fireplace and can source very inexpensive or even free wood, this is a sure way to reduce the amount of energy consumed in your home during the winter months. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today for the best in Mt. Vernon WA heater maintenance and repair service.

Useful Furnace Efficiency Tips and Tricks For Homeowners

The American Standard 95% Furnace

This 95% efficient furnace by American Standard con convert 95 cents of every dollar you spend on fuel into heat for your home.

A dependable and reliable furnace is an important part of any typical residential home today. That is why it is so crucial to pay particular attention to the proper care and maintenance of this essential home appliance for maximum furnace efficiency. For example, one little-known trick is to consider rearranging the rooms in your home as a way to improve airflow. By moving furniture you may be able to lower utility expenses. Simply moving furniture away from a window or wall where it is drafty or cool reduces heating requirements.

Door Socks

Best of all, if you have a favorite spot for your beloved couch or chair you can easily move them back in the spring. Equally of concern are drafty doorways. Doors that have gaps can actually allow heat to escape around the frame through those gaps. One of the best ways to deal with drafty doorways is to cover gaps with something known as door socks. These are readily available in most big-box stores or hardware stores in your local area. Door socks can even be made out of old unused personal socks that would otherwise be discarded.

Create a Seal

It is also worth considering proper insulation for windows throughout your home. Because you spend a lot of money heating the interior of your house you want to make sure that heat does not escape through windows that are old or improperly fitted. One quick fix in this regard is to consider using plastic film and placing it over windows with tape to create a seal. This will greatly reduce heat loss especially in drafty older windows. While this kind of plastic may not be the most attractive it can easily be removed in the spring.

A Great Way of Saving Energy

Finally, the simple idea of just lowering your thermostat can greatly reduce energy usage and improve furnace-heating performance. Consider lowering the thermostat and wearing a sweater indoors. Extra blankets at night will keep everyone warm while you effectively lower your energy bill. As an added note, closing vents in unused rooms is also a great way of saving energy and improving furnace efficiency. Along with closing vents it is recommended to close the doors in any spare rooms that are not in use. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today for the best in Mount Vernon Washington furnace repair, maintenance and installation today.

Winter Home Heating Safety Tips

As the temperature outdoors dips into the 30’s it becomes important to be aware of a few home heating safety tips as a way to protect you, your family and your investment. Your home is one of the biggest investments you will ever make, and that is why it is so important to consider these basic home heating safety tips. For example, it is a known fact that generators can create exhaust fumes that are toxic. Always place generators outside and far enough away from windows and doors and vents so that carbon monoxide does not enter your home.

Causing Headaches and Even Unconsciousness

Carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas that can build up quickly and last for hours lingering in your home and causing headaches and even unconsciousness. Also keep in mind that appliances that use combustion for energy to cook, warm your home or even for decorative purposes can be dangerous. Fuels used today for combustion appliances can include everything from kerosene to oil and natural as well as liquefied petroleum in addition to coal and wood. Heaters, furnaces and ovens along with fireplaces and water heaters can all present danger because they may be using this type of fuel.

Be Aware of Changes in How You Feel

While in most cases these types of combustion appliances are completely safe, there are certain circumstances where they can result in combustion fumes and pollutants that can indeed have an effect on health and even cause loss of life. Be aware of changes in how you feel including dizziness, headaches, sleepiness in addition to watery eyes and problems breathing. These can all indicate the carbon monoxide or some other type of toxic gas is present. Typically speaking, the best thing to do if you suspect that toxic gases are present in your home is to vacate the premises immediately.

These Materials Can All Release Dangerous Chemicals

Remember that a combustion appliance that has been properly installed should operate as advertised and not cause any problems. However, if you see or smell smoke this may indicate that there is something wrong. Always avoid burning any type of artificial material including plastic, foam or even colored or inked paper as well as household garbage for fuel. These materials all release toxic chemicals that can only lead to unwanted health related problems. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today to learn more about Skagit County  heater installation and services with a proven track record.

Useful Tips For Making Your Home More Energy Efficient

With energy costs steadily on the rise it is increasingly important for homeowners to make full use of all available options when it comes to increasing residential energy-efficient. Here are just a few useful ways of making your home more energy efficient in order to reduce your carbon footprint and to save you money. For example, insulation plays a key role in keeping a house at a comfortable temperature and so that the temperature does not fluctuate excessively. Keep in mind that wall insulation as well as attic insulation can be increased as necessary to improve insulating efficiency.

Isolate and Repair any Drafts That Exist

In addition, there are many modern ways of using recycled insulation to increase your home’s efficiency. Everything from shredded blue jeans to recycled paper and other similar materials can literally be blown into the attic or the walls of a home to improve efficiency. Equally important is to make sure that you identify, isolate and repair any drafts that exist within your home. When draft areas are detected they should be sealed using silicone caulking or some other type of foam sealant. Even pet doors can create a serious problem when it comes to allowing conditioned air to escape to the outdoors.

Allowing The Sun To Warm The Interior of Your Home

Another great way to improve energy efficiency in any home is to consider using passive solar heating. This can be as simple as allowing the sun to warm the interior of a home by opening all window coverings on the side where the sun is currently shining. Having regular and routine maintenance performed on a home’s heating system is another great way to better manage efficiency. Units that are properly maintained and routinely inspected perform better and ultimately will save you money.

Wood-Burning Fireplace Will Produce More Heat Than a Gas Fireplace

As an added note, making full use of a wood fireplace can also be a great way to lower energy costs. A wood-burning fireplace will generally produce more heat than a gas fireplace and can be used to burn (in many cases) free fuel sources. This can include everything from fallen trees to cut branches and even wood pellets. Getting creative in this regard will have a big impact on annual energy usage. Finally, reversing ceiling fans and lowering the temperature by a few degrees on the thermostat can have a substantial impact on overall energy usage during the winter months. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today to learn more about the best in Mount Vernon Washington heating and air conditioning maintenance and repair.

HVAC Installation Tips That Will Save You Money

While today’s modern HVAC systems are incredibly advanced and reliable, they do on occasion require replacement. That said here are a few simple and easy to understand tips that can ultimately help residential homeowners save money over the short and long-term. For example, when installing an HVAC system in your home always choose to work with a reputable contractor. Take the time to explore your options when it comes to local contractors who will stand by their work. This is one of the best ways to make sure that your HVAC installation goes as expected.

Installing a Used HVAC Unit

In addition, always avoid the urge to install a used unit. Opting for a new energy efficient system is the best way to get maximum return on your investment on this type of equipment. Installing a used HVAC unit is a sure way to create more problems and more expenses later on down the road. In addition, when having an HVAC unit installed make absolutely sure that the right size unit is installed for the actual square footage of your dwelling. Anytime you are unsure it is best to go with a unit that is slightly larger than to go with one that is too small. An undersized unit will ultimately result in problems.

Adequate Insulation So That Energy Is Not Wasted

Equally important is to make sure that the proper amount of insulation currently exists within your home. A reputable and trusted contractor will install the right sized HVAC system for your structure while also making sure that there is adequate insulation in the home so that energy is not wasted. Insulation is important because it assists an HVAC unit in achieving the desired temperature without using an excessive amount of energy. This will translate into lower utility bills and a more efficient system overall.

Renovating or Remodeling A Home

Finally, one great tip is to install an HVAC cage when possible. This protects the unit from theft and is a good insurance policy for just a few hundred dollars. Keep in mind that the cost of an HVAC system is one of the biggest expenses when renovating or remodeling a home. That is why it is so important to make smart and wise decisions when it comes to the installation of this important household appliance. When the work is done right and the best unit is selected you can enjoy years of worry free operation. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today to learn more about HVAC installation in Burlington Washington that is proven and reliable.

Water heaters are very dependable today, however even the best-built water heater will eventually fail at some point in time. Few people realize how much they count on a water-heating unit until the day that it actually stops working. Here are a few smart tips on how to handle the failure of a water heater in your home. Perhaps the most essential thing to remember is that when one does indeed fail it is important to get it fixed as quickly as possible. Whether you have an electric or gas unit, time is of the essence so plan on getting it fixed as soon as you can.

The Tankless Variety

Keep in mind that those with a storage tank style water heater that has failed may have the perfect opportunity to switch to a more efficient and more reliable system known as a tankless water heater. It is also worth noting that gas water heaters of the tankless variety are considered to be one of the most efficient types of water heating units available today. While it is true that tankless models tend to be pricier than conventional storage tank type water heaters, they will pay for themselves over the long term when it comes to energy savings and long-term reliability.

Mount Vernon Washington Water Heater Repair

When the day finally does arrive where a water heater does actually fail, remember that calling, as soonest possible, for help from a professional in the field will reduce the inconveniences that you may experience. In most instances once you have a professional in your home working on the problem it can be repaired in the same day having your home back to normal quickly. Whether a water heater fails completely or simply has a troublesome leak, calling in a professional is the best way to resolve the problem. Keep in mind that more serious cases where there is a sub floor that has rotted through or severe water damage has occurred may require additional time to resolve the situation, as would be expected.

Difficult To Access

Finally, one big concern that people have when a water heater unit does fail is that of cost. Remember that repair costs will depend primarily on the type of gas or electric water heater that you decide to replace the failed unit with and how easy it is to install. One example is when a water heater is hidden in an area of the home that is difficult to access. When this is the case, installation and repair costs can be considerably more than if a water heater is conveniently located out in the open in a garage, for example. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today to learn more about water heater repair in Mount Vernon Washington. Help is just a call away!

Today more than ever before it is important to consider all options when it comes to saving energy and saving money. The term Energy Star is an important aspect of selecting the right type of appliances for your home or business. When you purchase appliances or equipment that boast the Energy Star label or logo, you can be sure that you are buying an energy efficient product that will ultimately save you money and also help to save the planet. As an added bonus, with Energy Star appliances, anytime there is an increase in the cost of energy, the value of your appliances automatically increases in terms of the ability to save you money.

Replacement Will Be Less Frequent

Energy Star approved appliances are considered to be higher quality in terms of how they are designed, manufactured and built. In other words, this type of appliance will provide years of trouble-free service while operating in a quieter and more efficient way. They can be expected to last longer meaning that replacement will be less frequent. Everything else aside, saving money each and every month on energy bills is perhaps one of the most enticing reasons to choose this type of appliance. In addition, the idea of incentives and rebates is hard to resist.

High-Efficiency

For example, the incentives and rebates offered by Cascade Natural Gas right here in Washington State have real value in terms of saving consumers money. Typical incentives include hundreds of dollars offered to those who choose to install high-efficiency natural gas furnaces or high-efficiency tankless water heaters. In some cases, these incentives can be over $800 or more. Even increasing attic insulation can make one eligible for incentives and rebates. Energy Star appliances are a big hit because of their amazingly high rates of efficiency meaning that they will almost always entitle a homeowner to some type of incentive or rebate.

The Next Time You Are In The Market For A New Appliance

In addition to installing Energy Star appliances there are many other ways that homeowners can save money around the home. This can include everything from simply installing faucet aerators and showerheads that are specifically designed to save water. This not only lowers water usage but it also reduces costs associated with heating water. Keep these simple ideas in mind the next time you are in the market for a new appliance. From boilers to fireplaces and geothermal heat pumps as well as ductless heat pumps and many other types of common household appliances, qualifying for Energy Star incentives and rebates is easy. Contact Alpine Heating & Cooling today to learn more about Energy Star incentives and rebates in Mount Vernon Washington and the surrounding communities.

Tankless Water Heater Tips and Tricks

Takagi Tankless

Takagi Tankless

Today more than ever before consumers are turning to tankless water heaters as a way to lower energy consumption and decrease utility expenses in general. That said keep in mind that this type of water heater requires a special type of venting in order to blow hot exhaust gas outside of the home as a way to dissipate heat. Different from conventional water heaters, tankless hot water heaters require unique and creative venting options.

Direct Vent Pulls Air From the Outside

Keep in mind that in many cases the installation of this type of water heater results in a more attractive and less expensive finished product. Perhaps the most important aspect of a tankless water heater is that it will save considerable space. Tankless water heaters can be vented in one of two ways. They can either be vented via a power vent or direct venting. A direct vent pulls air from the outside of the home and will typically have two vent openings used for exhaust and intake.

Outside Tankless Water Heaters

This kind of configuration is unique in that it allows a tankless unit to fit in a much smaller spaces than would otherwise be the case. Conversely, power vent type units only require that there be adequate exhaust venting available. That said, a power vent unit usually requires a larger area so that adequate volumes of air are available and so that normal combustion is assured. There are other types of units that are known as outside tankless water heaters. These are good because they can free up a lot of indoor space. Best of all, an outside unit requires no additional venting.

High Efficiency Levels

When installing a unit that does require outside venting remember that venting can be through a sidewall or roof or any other number of other unique venting options. Finally, there are units that are known as condensing tankless water heaters. These are a good choice because they can lower energy costs thanks to very high efficiency levels. With the lower cost of installation associated with nonmetal parts being used, a condensing tankless water heater may be the perfect choice for today’s modern homeowner. Contact Alpine Heating and Cooling today to learn more about Mount Vernon Washington HVAC systems and services with a proven record.