Posted by & filed under Heating.

With winter about to blast us with icy winds and deep-freezing temperatures, homeowners should consider the benefits of a zoned heating system. Having a zoned heating system allows you greater control over heat distribution in the house by turning up the heat just where you need it and whenever you need it. This results in significant savings on your utility bills.

The reason that rooms in your house tend to be warmer in some places and colder in others is best explained because:

  • Heated rises, so rooms on the upper floors are often too warm.
  • Since heat rises, basement rooms are typically too cold.
  • Rooms with high or vaulted ceilings are difficult to retain heat.
  • Rooms that have a southerly exposure and receive long hours of sunlight tend to be too warm.

Although these are just a few reasons for the variations in temperatures throughout your home, there is one way that you can establish an evening-out effect by installing a zone heating system.

http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=get-cialis-online Standard System:

When you have a standard, non-zoned central heating system, the system controls the temperature of the entire house as a whole. It is designed to heat the house with the same temperature, which is both inefficient and costly. In contrast, a zoned heating system makes it possible for the homeowner to control the temperature of each room or zone individually. It allows you to heat rooms that are used more frequently during the day, like your kitchen and family room while preventing usage of energy in parts unused, like bedrooms.

levitra generico italia consegna 24 ore Zone System:

zone-heatingA typical zoned heating system includes the main floor as one heating zone of the house and the upstairs bedroom areas as a separate heating zone.  By having a zone heating system installed, a homeowner can save an average of 20 to 30 percent on energy costs, thereby maximizing comfort and minimizing utility bills. Since utility costs accounts for more than 40 percent of an average household’s heating and cooling costs, the savings can really add up for homeowners. Unlike a standard one control heating system, a zoned system can be adjusted for personal comfort and a home’s environmental conditions. Zoned systems help homeowners operate their heating systems more effectively; thereby, distributing heat to the desired location when needed.

Zone heating is also known as an automatic balancing system and in theory it’s pretty simple. The system is designed to eliminate hot and cold spots in the house, using duct dampers and multiple thermostats. The multiple thermostats are wired and connected to a master control panel, which operates the dampers within the ductwork of your forced-air system. The temperatures are constantly being read by the thermostats for their specific zone and then the dampers within the ductwork open or close accordingly for the thermostat’s setting.

use of lasix in dogs New Homes and Zone Heating:

For homeowners building or purchasing a new home, the zone system can be easily installed during construction. The more zones that you have installed, the more control you’ll have over your heating and cooling. There are a wide variety of thermostats available on the market including programmable versions. However, points out Daniel O’Brian, a technical expert from Supplyhouse.com “Any thermostat can be used to zone a home, but not all thermostats are for the same application.”  He goes on to state that “Voltages, the heating/cooling system layout, and features on different thermostats can be geared more towards one or another application.” bobvila-zoned-heating-systems

viagra uk purchase Existing Homes and Zone Heating:

Homeowners might be hesitant to make the transition to system zoning because of the initial cost of installation. However, if you are considering adding a zoned heating system to your existing home, consult with a professional installer because the process is a fairly complex project.  It requires wiring in the control and thermostats, hooking them up to the furnace and cutting into ductwork to install zone vales and dampers. This project will most likely require opening wall and running electrical lines.

watch The Ultimate Benefits of Zone Heating:

follow url  

Posted by & filed under Fireplaces.

Fireplaces are considered one of the favorite amenities that most home buyers consider as a positive addition when they’re searching for a home.  The fireplace adds comfort and an extra touch of architectural vitality to a house. They offer the kind of cozy warmth that you can only get from a fire and they help to melt away the cold outside.  Fireplaces offer an inviting and cheerful place to gather around with the sounds of crackling flames with family and friends. It can be a place of solitude to curl up in front with a favorite chair and read a good book. Fireplaces provide a place where you can enjoy countless other favorite indoor activities.

Sitting in front of a fireplace is very romantic and when winter storms hit and electricity is knocked out, you can keep warm and have plenty of light.  People without fireplaces get freezing cold when waiting for the utility company to restore power. Fireplaces that have a mantel are especially pleasing to have because they can be used for interior décor and design, particularly when certain seasons are upon us, like fall.

Autumn Fireplace Mantel

Even though the chill is in the air, you can warm up your home during the fall with cozy and inviting fireplace designs. Gathering around the fireplace in the autumn season is a great way to spend time unwinding with your family and friends as the colour of autumn makes this the most heartwarming season. Although the main function of a fireplace is to provide warmth, it’s also a perfect place for you to create a stunning focal point by designing a display of fall foliage.

Fall mantel decorating ideas are about warmth, coziness and bright autumn leaves. The front mantel of the fireplace is something that you can easily decorate and personalize your room. The fall season is a great time to redecorate your fireplace mantel in line with the cooler temperatures making it more cozy and inviting.

Fireplace Decorating Ideas

dining delight fireplace

Whether the fireplace is used on unused, it’s a centerpiece in the room that’s just waiting to be adorned with seasonal decorations to enhance the autumn feel in the air and add warmth to your home. There are creative and inexpensive fall decorating ideas that can transform any unused fireplace into a showpiece for the season. You should decorate your mantelpiece to emphasize it for the autumn, but as with any ornamental display, a fireplace mantel display requires the right amount of balance and proportion.

Decorating for autumn is easy with the bountiful fall harvest, such as pumpkins, gourds, fall leaves, fallen nuts, and branches that are plentiful, ensuring that there’s no better time to decorate with beautiful nature. Regardless of your particular decorating style, you are likely to find easy and inexpensive ways to accessorize your home indoors with items found in nature for your fall mantel.

 

The mantel décor is very personal and a lot of it depends on what style you want to create and what finishing touches you want to use to design your masterpiece of fall foliage. To create a rustic feel, you can add some natural or faux vegetables, fruits, berries, branches and a fall inspired checked fabric for the topping. If you want to go for a festive touch glitter letters and pumpkins are ideal along with some wreaths and garlands of fall leaves. The modern look can be achieved by using white pumpkins, candle holders and the ever popular faux leaves.

Fireplace mantels command attention in any room. A beautiful mantel display can give a fireplace new life and fall is the perfect time to be inspired.   Decorating your mantel for fall can be simple, fun and elegant. Fall leaves, real or ceramic pumpkins, candles, twigs, branches, berries, pinecones, ceramic planters, flowers, fruit and autumn wreaths enhance the spirit of the season in your home with a beautifully designed fireplace mantel.

For even further inspiration, visitNapoleon’s Fireplace’s Pinterest Page for Autumn Mantel Decorations.  Images above are from that Pinterest Board, and were provided from The Frugal Homemaker and Dining Delight respectively.

Posted by & filed under Fireplaces, Heating.

red wine by fireplace.

As more and more homeowners consider adding a fireplace to their house to spruce things up, gas fireplace manufacturers are coming up with new designs that take aesthetics, utility, and size into account. As a result, there are now a number of gas fireplace types and styles to suit the needs of just about any homeowner. Here’s a sampling of some of that variety.

Direct vent gas fireplaces

These prefabricated fireplaces expel all gasses from combustion directly to an exterior vent, making them approximately five times more efficient than traditional wood-burning fireplaces. Direct vent gas fireplaces are also a more health-conscious option, because they direct exhaust gasses outside the home, rather than back into a living space.

Direct vent gas fireplaces can be made to look like traditional fireplaces, or designed with a more modern style in mind. For the former, have a look at Napoleon’s GD36 Direct Vent Fireplace, which creates yellow flames that emanate from ceramic logs that resemble real wood. A number of decorative panel options let you customize the façade to fit the décor of your room.

If your style is more modern, Napoleon’s LHD45 Linear Direct Vent Fireplace is sure to catch your eye. The clean lines give the fireplace a distinctly contemporary feel. When placed higher up on a wall, this fireplace resembles a framed work of art, which in a way, it is.

Gas inserts for fireplaces

If you already have a wood-burning fireplace setup in your home and want to switch to a gas fireplace, gas inserts can make the process quick and easy. Gas inserts come complete with a combustion chamber and gas logs, designed to keep the look and warmth of a traditional fireplace, while at the same time eliminating energy-wasting drafts. The realistic ceramic-fibre logs featured in many gas inserts ensure you won’t lose the allure of a real wood-burning fireplace. Accessories like bay fronts and cast iron surrounds come in a variety of finishes to let you customize the gas insert to suit your living space.

Direct vent gas stoves

Like direct vent fireplaces, these gas stoves drive combustion gasses to a vent that leads outside your home. Direct vent gas stoves are ideal for adding some charm and warmth to a smaller room. Also like direct vent fireplaces, these stoves create realistic flames, but within a smaller unit. These stoves are a wonderful way to bring a bit of rustic style into your home, while still taking advantage of their modern energy efficiency.

Gas fireplaces come in a number of sizes and styles, many of which can be further customized with accessories and finishes to fit perfectly within your home. In addition to adding some aesthetic value to a room, these gas fireplaces are easy to use and simple to maintain, unlike wood-burning fireplaces, which require chimney cleaning to ensure soot doesn’t build up. If you weren’t sold on the looks alone, keep in mind that gas fireplaces can also help cut down your energy costs, as they give your furnace a break while you heat only the rooms you have in use.

Posted by & filed under Fireplaces, Heating.

Crystallo direct vent gas fireplace mounted directly in the wall

When’s the last time you saw someone curl up with a cup of coffee and good book beside a baseboard heater? Sure baseboard heaters and furnaces get the job done when it comes to heating your home, but they don’t quite have the allure and feel good-factor of a fireplace. If you’re looking to bring a little coziness to your home, a fireplace is a worthwhile investment.  Furthermore, last year Hamilton had a massive ice storm that left some areas of Hamilton without power for three days in December. Fortunately gas fireplaces don’t work on electricity, and you can still keep warm with them (provided they have proper ventilation). Let’s look at the advantages of both gas and wood-burning fireplaces.

Natural gas fireplaces

If you want the look and feel of a fireplace without the cleaning and wood-chopping involved with maintaining a wood-burning fireplace, you can opt for a natural gas fireplace. Not having logs means not having to worry about chopping firewood, not having to clean ashes, and not having to worry about heat running low as each log burns out; you control exactly when the fireplace turns on and off. Keep in mind that modern gas fireplaces are built with style in mind, and many come complete with faux logs that look like real ones.

Another benefit of gas fireplaces is that they don’t release fumes or particles into the air above your home or into the air within it. You can breathe easy while enjoying the warmth and glow of the fireplace. What’s more, gas fireplaces usually utilize a ventilation system rather than a chimney. If your home doesn’t already have a chimney, gas fireplaces are therefore easier and more cost effective to install. Plus, no chimney means no need to worry about cleaning the creosote build-up that inevitably comes from a wood-burning fireplace.

When fireplaces come to mind, you wouldn’t typically think of them as being able to heat a large area. However newer gas fireplaces are being fashioned with built-in blowers, which can help circulate warm air throughout the home, and not just in the fireplace’s immediate vicinity.

If you have pets and/or children, a gas fireplace may be a safer option than a wood-burning one, because the flames will be controlled, and there’s no danger of flyaway sparks.  There is normally a glass window in front of the fireplace.  Normally this glass gets hot enough to burn you, however you can buy special screens that prevent young children from touching the actual hot glass.

Wood-burning fireplaces

There’s a real rustic appeal to a traditional, wood-burning fireplace. You not only get the warmth of a fire, but also the crackling sounds and the scent of wood. It’s a way to bring a bit of the outdoors inside your home; you can’t roast marshmallows over a gas fireplace.

There’s also a money-saving benefit to installing a wood-burning fireplace. Since it wouldn’t be connected to your gas or electricity lines, you can create heat for your home without relying on your local utility company.

On the surface, a wood burning fireplace may not seem like an environmentally-conscious heating option, (think of the trees you’ll have the chop down) but in fact, it is. Burning wood emits a relatively small amount of carbon dioxide compared to what’s emitted through the burning of fossil fuels. Wood is also a renewable resource, and trees are considered by some organizations to be carbon-neutral – meaning that while they emit CO2 when burned or when they decay, they offset those effects by absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere during their lives.

Wood vs Gas Fireplaces

Depending on your preference, either type of fireplace is acceptable.  Most people prefer a gas fireplace now, as they are convenient and tend to be more energy efficient (they have fans that blow warm air into the house, rather than having it sucked up into the chimney.  The glass plate in front of it also gets hot and keeps your house warm.  If you are interested in a Gas Fireplace, or you want to convert your wood fireplace into a gas fireplace, call Hamilton Home Comfort today.  We install fireplaces, repair fireplaces and do general maintenance to keep your house warm.

Posted by & filed under Heating.

Utility bills serve as one of the most significant expenses a homeowner can ever incur. There are many things that consume energy in a home. At the top of this list, air conditioners and furnaces tend to drive up people’s energy costs more than anything else. This is especially true when there are older units present in the residence. Swamp coolers and old furnaces struggle to retain the same level of functionality they did years ago. They already used too much energy to begin with. The fact that they have seen better days puts them even more behind the curve in terms of efficiency.

Energy efficient air conditioners and furnaces are understandably important. But in addition, the way utility bills are calculated depends on how much you use your machines. You have to find a way to reduce your usage rates to the point where your utility bills are at a level that you can afford. Sacrificing comfort for the sake of savings is easier than most people might imagine.

programmable thermostatProgrammable Thermostats

Old thermostats are much harder to interpret than their newer, digital counterparts. Reading these thermostats is challenging and programming them is even more difficult. As these thermostats wear out, they fail to communicate with their air conditioners or furnaces as they should. This issue causes each of these units to run more frequently or not at all. The extra time they spend cranking away will cause your utility bills to go through the roof. There’s nothing wrong with turning off your thermostat once in a while, especially if it means you will save a few dollars in the process.

The newer thermostats are easier to read and program as well. From an energy savings standpoint It’s important that these units stop running when you’re not at home. Other people decide that they want to have them going while they’re sleeping to increase their comfort level. But surviving these time periods is easy as long as you keep things warm until you fall asleep. Once asleep, you won’t have to worry about what temperature it is.

Space Heaters

One more trick to save money on  your energy bill is to invest in a fan or small space heater. Either one of these units can cool down or heat up a room in a hurry. Letting these devices run at all hours of the day can cause problems, however, especially if they have been around for a number of years. New versions of these devices have safety controls implemented that force them to turn off when conditions become unsafe. They should be turned on before you go to bed and then turned off when you’re about to lay down.

Next week we’ll discuss the effects of using a fireplace in addition to your furnace for heating your home.

Posted by & filed under Air Conditioning.

Winterizing your air conditioner is important due to the amount of damage the harsh conditions could inflict on it. Not everyone has the luxury of having an air conditioner that’s a standalone unit located a fair distance from their main residence. Older homes have swamp coolers, which are usually bulky, leaky units that are attached to the home and require a lot of maintenance. People who own homes that have swamp coolers should make the transition to a modern central air system. This transition saves the homeowner considerable amounts of money in utility bills and makes the process of winterizing an air conditioner much easier.

Outside Air Compressor

Homeowners need to have a durable cover to put on their air conditioner when the temperature turns cold. As time goes on, this cover will go through a lot as a result of its exposure to the elements. Eventually, the time will come when a new cover needs to be purchased. The homeowner should not waste any time in buying this cover. Sticking with the worn out version will lead to the air conditioner becoming progressively more damaged as time goes on. Throughout winter, the placement of the air conditioner cover should be analyzed to determine whether it’s still secure.

Air Condition Covers

Before draping the cover on the air conditioner, the homeowner should make it a point to thoroughly clean their unit. During rainy seasons, leaves and other debris and blow into the unit. All a homeowner needs to accomplish this feat is a hose with a sprayer attachment. During this process, the homeowner should pay attention and make sure that they don’t get water inside the unit. These units are self-contained machines, which makes it more difficult to get water out of them. It’s wise to keep an eye on these units to make sure that they are not being tampered with. Thieves tend to target air conditioners for the valuable materials that are contained within them.

Prior to winter setting in, homeowners should have their air conditioner checked to make sure that it’s in peak condition. Small problems can become more serious when the unit is exposed to cold weather. With swamp coolers, it’s important to fix them properly, which might be easier said than done due to all the problems they can experience. Newer air conditioners won’t need as much maintenance, but they should still be looked after like swamp coolers. As the rate of usage increases, the amount of time before a unit needs to be repaired will decrease.

Some people are able to repair their air conditioner on their own. Not everybody has the experience necessary to complete these tasks by themselves. Hiring a professional is understandable. The cost of having to overhaul an air conditioner when a shoddy repair is performed is more than what a homeowner will pay to bring in an expert. Every homeowner should have this cost factored into their overall monthly budget. Without this money on hand, problems that have easy solutions could become disasters sooner rather than later.

Posted by & filed under Heating.

Commonly used thermostats are not convenient, but there’s a better way to control this part of your home. It’s a pain to have to constantly baby them and worry that your air conditioner or furnace is running while you’re at work or out and about. Thermostats that are on the fritz have a tendency to communicate with furnaces or air conditioners improperly. Switching them out for smart thermostats is a more recommended approach because it will ensure that there will be a response when you set your thermostat to a certain temperature.

You would be surprised at how much you can do within your home simply by using one of the mobile devices you have sitting around. There are all sorts of implements that you can purchase to automate things in your home. More and more of these devices are starting to be integrated with both Apple and Android gadgets. The opportunities for homeowners to purchase these tools are increasing as time goes on and demand increases. No longer is home automation a dream best left in the distant future. It’s the current reality we live and becoming much clearer as time goes on.

smart thermostat on the wall

The Advantages are Clear

The advantages of having a smart thermostat are clear. Who hasn’t dealt with a thermostat that’s on the fritz or failing to work as it’s supposed to? These concerns are commonplace among homeowners and people who are renting properties as well. While smart thermostats still have their quirks, they are much more intuitive than their older counterparts. Plus, the fact that they come with all the bells and whistles means that the technically savvy people among us will have something that’s appealing to them. They are not for people who don’t know the first thing about technology, but rather they are for the crowd that wants nothing less than the best and brightest products on the market today.

Can you imagine what it would be like to be able to know the temperature inside your home and have the ability to change it from any location? The idea is intriguing and it’s something that’s more attainable than you might think. Since technology has progressed to the point where people have the opportunity to do such things, it’s wondrous to think what’s coming next. We no longer have to check and recheck our thermostats before we leave our homes. Instead, we can look at them using one of our mobile devices and change the temperature that way.

Regular thermostats have a tendency to be unpredictable. It’s difficult to schedule times when the air conditioner or furnace would be off. The same can’t be said for a smart thermostat. These thermostats provide homeowners with the option to set the temperature and when they want their air conditioner or furnace to turn on or off. That functionality was present in older thermostats; however, it was much more difficult to determine how they were set. You had to set your thermostat and hope that you did it the right way.

Posted by & filed under Furnace Repair.

sealing a window
When someone has the dream of owning their home, they often fail to understand the responsibility that goes along with it. A homeowner has to take care of their home, inside and out, during every month of the year. Special precautions need to be taken as the cool weather of autumn turns into the freezing weather of winter. The amount of damage a home can incur during the winter months is something that should not be taken for granted.

A home’s furnace should be closely analyzed to determine whether it’s able to last the entire winter. New homeowners will have a hard time telling when the furnace was last maintained unless the previous owner of the home kept impeccable documentation. It’s better to be safe than sorry. An annual inspection of a furnace will ensure that any problems that might exist will be resolved before it’s too late.

Replacing a furnace is a significant investment for any homeowner to make. Furnaces are important, yet sensitive, mechanisms that serve as the heart of a home during cold weather. Older furnaces might not operate as efficiently as new models coming onto the market. Investing in an energy efficient furnace will reduce the costs that homeowners will incur each year in utility bills.

The job of a furnace is often undercut by vulnerabilities in the structure of the home. As time goes on, the insulation inside a home’s walls tends to vanish, leaving the home powerless against the cold weather outside. The same goes for a home’s windows and doors. Minor repairs can make a significant difference in a home’s ability to maintain a warm temperature.

Windows need to be replaced every so often to ensure that they’re able to keep the warm air in and cold air out or vice versa, depending on the time of the year. Replace the wooden frames around all older windows if they show any signs of wear or rot. Tear out all windows and put in new ones in case it has been a significant amount of time since they were installed. Airtight windows will also save homeowners money on their monthly utility bills.

Any door facing the outside of a home can let in a surprising amount of cold air. This is why the homeowner needs to look at the bottom of the door to determine how much air is coming in. Simply purchasing a weatherstripping kit could alleviate the problem if the condition of the door isn’t too far gone. It’s possible that the doors in question might need to be replaced to fully remedy the situation.

Once a homeowner is done with the inside of their home, they need to do the same thing on the outside. All yard working tools should be put away. Any gas that’s present in yard machines like lawn mowers needs to be drained before they’re stored. Empty all water from hoses and pipes before the dead of winter sets in. After all, nobody wants to have a pipe bursting in their backyard.

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

Thermostat Set to Heat
The condition of one’s furnace will determine whether it’s able to last for the entire winter. Someone who’s barely moving into a home will have a hard time determining when the previous owner last had the furnace checked. A furnace might still need maintenance even if it was looked at recently. Replacing older furnaces with newer, more energy efficient ones is a wise investment.

Before a homeowner decides that their furnace needs maintenance, they need to determine if they can handle the job on their own or will have to hire a professional to do it for them. Hiring a professional will increase the cost of the entire project, but it will also reduce the chances of something terrible happening. A poorly installed furnace will cost more to fix than one that needs a minor repair due to the potential problems and mistakes made during the installation process.

Every homeowner is concerned with how much they will have to pay every month in utility bills. These concerns tend to peak during times when they’re using their air conditioner and furnace the most. Older furnaces require more energy to perform the same job as newer ones. Efficient furnaces are more ideal because they cut down on the time it takes for a home to be heated.

It’s difficult to tell when a furnace is in need of maintenance until it’s too late. As homeowners, we like to convince ourselves that our furnace is running at peak condition. Coming to terms with the reality that we have to invest in the services of a professional to fix our furnace is difficult. We have to admit that we need to spend money that we might not have at this moment.

Homeowners have the responsibility to do whatever it takes to ensure that their home is looking great at all times. Whether or not homeowners have the money, they must devise a way to fix what needs to be fixed before disaster strikes. Paying for a mortgage is often the easiest part of owning a home. Maintaining the property is where things get tricky and costly.

A furnace that has been in a home for a number of years is at increased risk of exploding. This is especially true with furnaces that run off gasoline. Switching out a gas furnace for an electric one is the best way to solve this problem. More and more homeowners are moving from using gas appliances and going completely electric.

Finding the right company to take the reins of any furnace repair project is tricky. There are so many companies that are either solely focused on repairing furnaces or have that skill as part of their portfolio. Companies that specialize in furnace repair are better options than the alternative because they can get the job done more adeptly.

Once the right company is located, they should be depended on to conduct all repairs whenever the homeowner needs them in future. Having to find a new company every time the furnace needs repaired is too much of a hassle.