How to Effectively Save Energy at Home This Summer

As temperatures in southwest Florida heat up for the season, many homeowners become interested in techniques for saving energy and reducing cooling costs. Here are some useful tips on how to save energy at home in the summer. These suggestions can help you reduce energy consumption while trimming your monthly cooling bills:

programmable thermostat

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  • Use a programmable thermostat: Use a programmable thermostat to better control temperatures in your home. These electronic devices allow you to use set points to automatically reduce the amount of cooling provided by your HVAC equipment during times when it’s not needed. For example, the thermostat can let your cooling system run at a lower level during the day when you’re not at home. Then, it can automatically increase cooling an hour or so before you get home to ensure your home is cool and comfortable when you need it.
  • Reduce heat gain: Heat gain is excess heat produced by sunlight, appliances, and other devices. Close drapes during the day to keep excess sunlight out of your home. Avoid operating cooking ovens or heat-producing appliances during the day when outdoor temperatures are at their highest. Instead, use microwave ovens or smaller toaster ovens for cooking.
  • Increase insulation: Add more insulation to your home’s walls, and ceiling to reduce heat transfer from the outdoors. Make sure your attic is thoroughly insulated; attics can get very hot in the summer, and this heat will radiate downward, increasing temperatures throughout your home.
  • Improve your home’s seal: Find and seal holes, cracks, gaps, and other openings where cool air could leak out or hot outside air could get in. Use caulking to seal around door and window frames and casings. Add weatherstripping around doors and windows to stop drafts and air leaks. Make sure the ductwork in your HVAC system is in good condition and that all connections are sealed with mastic or metal tape.

Conditioned Air serves heating, cooling, and indoor air quality customers in Naples and the surrounding communities in southwest Florida. Contact us today for more information on how to save energy at home in the summer.

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To Install or not to Install? 4 Benefits of Electric Pool Heaters

If you’re trying to decide what type of pool heater to buy, you may be a bit overwhelmed by the different choices available. One type that’s becoming increasingly popular with Southwest Florida pool owners is the electric heat pump. So, are you asking yourself, “Should I install an electric pool heater?” We invite you take a look at some the key benefits:

little girl at pool

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Energy Savings

One of the biggest advantages of a heat pump pool heater is its low cost of operation. Although the unit itself runs on electricity, there’s no fuel consumed to heat the pool water. Instead, these pool heaters extract heat from the surrounding air and transfer it to the pool water.

Affordability

Not only do electric pool heaters offer energy savings, they also cost less than other options like solar-powered units. Their installation is simple and inexpensive compared to solar units, which are complicated and costly to install. Although heat pump models are pricier than gas-powered pool heaters, their 10- to 15-year expected life span and efficiency make them more affordable over the long term.

Reliability

Electric pool heaters are based on the same reliable technology as the heat pumps used for home heating and cooling. They’re built durably to provide years of trouble-free service with minimal preventive maintenance requirements. The heat transfer process heat pump pool heaters use works extremely well when outdoor temperatures are above 45 degrees, which makes them ideal for Florida’s climate. Since they pull heat from the outdoor air, these units work well even on cloudy days.

Eco-Friendly Operation

Since no fuel is burned to create heat, electric pool heaters are an environmentally friendly option that can reduce your carbon footprint. You also won’t have to worry about the risks of having a fuel storage tank on the property. Features like automatic shut offs and digital programmable thermostats enhance the safe operation.

“Should I install an electric pool heater?” We hope we’ve answered your question with a resounding “yes!” Contact the comfort pros at Conditioned Air for more expert advice. We’ve proudly served the Sarasota, Naples and Fort Meyers area since 1962.

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How to Effectively Keep Your House Cool This Summer in Florida

The summer  weather is appealing to many residents of the panhandle state, but many find it difficult to keep the hotter air out of their homes. Luckily, we’ve found some helpful tips that will show you how to keep your house cool during the summer.

ceiling fan installation

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Get your windows and air conditioning systems ready and follow these tips:

  • Reduce your cooling load by utilizing cost-effective conservation measures. You can try providing shade for east and west windows of your home. If possible, delay heat-generating activities, such as dish washing, until evening on days when it is particularly hot.
  • Use your ceiling fans to increase home comfort levels at higher thermostat settings. The standard human comfort range in the summer is between 72 and 78 degrees. To extend the comfort range to 80 degrees, you’ll need a breeze of about 2.5 ft/sec or 1.7 mph. A slow-turning ceiling-mounted paddle fan can easily provide this air flow.
  • In our hot Florida climate, it’s a good idea to consider planting shade trees around the house. Don’t plant trees on the South if you want to benefit from passive solar heating when the weather gets cooler later in the year.
  • Provide shade for your room’s air conditioners, or the outside half of your central system if possible. This can increase the unit’s efficiency by 5 to 10 percent

Warm weather is much more enjoyable outside than inside our homes. We hope you follow these and other home cooling tips that are designed to save you energy and money.

Did this advice show you how to keep your house cool during the summer? If you have any questions regarding installation and maintenance, please contact us at Conditioned Air today. Our professionals continue to serve the Naples, Fort Myers, and Sarasota areas.

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Explore the Benefits of Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioners on Hot Days

As the weather warms up, we guarantee that you’ll appreciate the many benefits of ductless mini-split air conditioners. If you’re tired of cooking beneath the summer sun, keep the following in mind as you consider these air conditioners and ways they can keep your utility bills down.

air conditioning repairman

Source: iStock.com/stask

One benefit of ductless mini-splits is their small size and flexibility for heating and cooling individual rooms. Many models can have as many as four indoor air handling units connected to one outdoor unit. This enables them to cover more “zones” than traditional air conditioners.

Because these systems are ductless, they avoid the energy losses associated with ductwork of central forced air systems. The duct losses in many central air systems account for more than 30 percent of energy consumption for space conditioning, especially if the ducts are in an unconditioned space, such as uninhabited rooms like the attic.

As you consider your options, remember to select a unit that is adequate in size for your cooling needs. Small rooms require 5-6,000 BTU units to cool, while larger rooms may require a unit in the 10,000 to 12,500 range. Thus, you should review this information carefully before you make your purchase.

These ductless air conditioners are effective but require professionals to complete the installation. Fortunately, our team is trained and qualified to handle complex jobs, including this system’s installation.

We encourage you to contact us at Conditioned Air today for more information about the benefits of ductless mini-split air conditioners. Since 1962, we’ve been serving the needs of homeowners in Naples, Fort Myers, and Sarasota. Our team would be delighted to make you our next satisfied customer. 

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4 Tips to Help You Save Energy This Spring

Utility bills continue to rise throughout Florida. For that reason, we highly recommend the following tips to save energy this spring that can help you keep your energy bills from rising through the roof.

repair man

Source: iStock.com/tiero

  • Schedule an Inspection. Hiring a professional HVAC technician can make a big difference in your monthly utility bills. Having your air conditioner professionally serviced, and your home inspected for air leaks and blocked ducts is an investment that will generate noticeable savings in your energy bills.
  • Turn on Your Ceiling Fans.  This will create a wind chill effect that will keep you cool. Remember, your fans should be set to spin counter-clockwise.
  • Cook and Clean Strategically. Make sure to save these chores until after the sun has gone down. Washing machines, dryers, ovens, and stoves radiate heat throughout the home. Instead of doing these in the heat of day, wait until the evening when open windows can vent this heat outside. Instead of cooking on the stove, hook up the barbecue grill and do some cooking outside.
  • Install Curtains & New Windows. Keep all sun facing windows covered throughout the day to prevent radiant heat gain. Further, it’s a good idea to install Energy Star qualified windows. These have high solar heat gain coefficient ratings which will reduce the amount of heat gain in your home.

We invite you to contact us at Conditioned Air with your questions regarding these spring energy saving tips. We’ll be happy to tell you more about ways to reduce your energy usage throughout the year.

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Air Conditioning 101: 7 Components That Contribute to Home Cooling

You turn the thermostat down and the air conditioning system kicks on. Soon, a stream of cool air flows through the ducts to keep you cool and comfortable. For most people, that’s about all they need to know about the way their air conditioning system operates. Read More »

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5 Common Air Conditioning Troubleshooting Tips

When HVAC problems develop during the long cooling season, life can quickly become uncomfortable. To deter being sidelined by small problems that only require a quick fix, brush up on some basic air conditioning troubleshooting tips. If these don’t work, you’ll know it’s time to contact the professionals.

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The 4-Step Process the Pros Will Take for a Proper A/C Installation

If you’re planning to replace your home’s cooling equipment to save energy and increase comfort, keep in mind that proper A/C installation is just as important as the new unit’s efficiency rating. To get the greatest benefit from your investment, your HVAC contractor will follow a four-step process.

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5 Allergens That Commonly Cause Issues With Indoor Air Quality

Indoor allergy issues are a major concern in Florida, and a number of allergens are present in most homes, creating unpleasant symptoms and decreasing indoor air quality. But how do you mitigate allergies? Here are some of the allergens that may be causing indoor air quality issues in your home.

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Comparing Initial Costs and Lifetime Costs Before Buying That A/C Replacement

With summer quickly approaching, you may be eyeing several options as you consider an A/C replacement. It’s not a purchase you make very often, so you might be tempted to look at nothing but the initial cost. However, a new air conditioner is an investment you continue to put money into for the next decade or more. That’s why you must also consider the lifetime costs before buying that A/C replacement.

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  • About Theo

    Theo Etzel has been President and CEO of Conditioned Air Corporation of Naples, Inc. in SW Florida since 1995. Theo’s background is in economics and business development and he is also a writer on business management topics and sits on the editorial advisory board of HVACR Business Magazine. Theo enjoys mentoring other small business leaders in growing and improving their businesses.
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