Improving the Air Quality in Your Home

There are many factors that can impact the quality of air in your home, from mold spores to dust and airborne contaminants. While you may not be able to see what you are breathing in, it can become apparent when you or family members begin to have health issues. Protecting the air you breathe in your home is a vital part of wellness, helping improve your family’s health. Maintaining your HVAC system can help improve your air quality and ensure you have clean air for your family to breathe.

Removing Contaminants from the Air

The air in your home is circulated through your HVAC system, making it the easiest place to filter out contaminants. All HVAC systems have filters that remove some particles from the air, but the level of purification depends on the filter you use and how often it is changed. To improve this process, choose a filter with a high minimum efficiency reporting value or MERV, which will filter out smaller particles. For homes with members with extreme sensitivities, auto immune deficiencies or allergies, a HEPA filter may be best for cleaning the air.

Check Humidity Levels

Another aspect of air quality is maintaining 40-60% humidity in your home. Too much humidity can lead to mold problems, and too little can cause respiratory irritation. Have your humidity levels tested by your local HVAC service company – adding a humidifier or dehumidifier may be needed to maintain the right level of moisture in the air.

You can improve your air quality by keeping up on filter changes in your HVAC system – many filters should be changed every month. Also, have annual HVAC service and inspections performed to ensure your system is working correctly and your duct work is kept clean and free from contaminants.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
1925 Lena Carter Road
Buford, GA 30519
(770) 475-9528

Why You Should Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat

It seems like everything is getting “smarter” nowadays. Cell phones, TVs and even irrigation systems come in “smart” varieties, as do HVAC thermostats. The idea of smart devices is to make it easier to access the information you need and get better or more efficient performance. That is certainly true of smart thermostats. Not only can it make it easier to control the climate inside your home by connecting to your smartphone, it can save you money. Here are a few reasons to upgrade to a smart thermostat for your HVAC system.

Change Your Settings Remotely

Older thermostats can often be programmed, but you need to be home to control the settings. With a smart thermostat you can access your settings from anywhere. This means if you find out you need to stay late at work, you can change the programmed time that the temperature should go up or down at your home. Going home early? Get your home cooled down or warmed up before you arrive, all from your smartphone app.

Reduce Energy Costs

The ability to change the settings on your HVAC system from anywhere helps you manage your heating and cooling costs. Plus, many smart thermostats have efficiency functions to help you improve your energy use. Some will let you know when the filter needs to be changed or other maintenance needs to be performed.

Besides the convenience and energy savings, smart thermostats can last longer and require less maintenance than older versions. If you want to save money and reduce energy waste on heating or cooling in your home, contact your local HVAC service company and talk to them about the options available in smart thermostats.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
1925 Lena Carter Road
Buford, GA 30519
(770) 475-9528

Pets, Pollen, Mold and Other Allergy Issues in Your Home

Do you notice that when you are at home, your allergies are at their worst? Lurking in the air of your home may be the contaminants that are triggering your allergies. If your nose is stuffy when you wake up in the morning, or you use your asthma inhaler more often at home than anywhere else, you may have an air quality problem that is making you sick. Here are some of the contributors to poor air quality in your home.

Pets

Dander and hair from cats, dogs and other pets is a common trigger for allergy symptoms. Keep in mind that even if you were not allergic to animals in the past, that doesn’t mean that is still the case. Allergies change as you get older and you can become sensitive to allergens that were not a problem in the past.

Pollen

Is the pollen from outside getting circulated and trapped in your home? While there is more pollen outside, there is also more air. When it gets trapped in a small space, pollen can have a powerful punch on your allergies.

Mold

Mold can be dangerous for anyone in your home, even if they are not allergic to the spores. Air borne mold is a health risk, but especially tough on those with allergies or respiratory issues.

Dust and Other Contaminants

Besides the common offenders, dust, chemicals and smoke can all impact your home’s air quality if not filtered effectively.

To make your home healthy and reduce your allergy symptoms, talk to your local HVAC service about improving your air filtration in your A/C and heating system. There are HVAC accessories such as HEPA filters that can do a better job filtering your air while helping keep your HVAC system efficient when changed regularly.

Posted on behalf of:
Western Aire Heating & Cooling
Marietta, GA 30066
(770) 505-7426

Finding the Right Moisture Balance for Air Quality

Home air quality is not just about filtering out allergens, dust and mold. Moisture has a big impact on the quality of air you breathe, whether it is too dry or too humid. Regulating your moisture balance in your air can be tricky; some homes may be too dry part of the year and too humid during other months. To get the right balance, you need to manage moisture and keep it at an appropriate level.

The right humidity level for homes tends to be right around 50%, within the 40-60% range. However, if you go above or below these levels, you may notice issues. Here are some of the problems that can occur when the humidity is too high or too low:

  • Too high. When humidity stays above 60%, your home could begin to have mold problems. You may notice musty smells, see mold on walls/windows/ceilings and notice water stains. Mold can be hazardous, especially for those with immune or respiratory issues, and cause expensive damage to your home.
  • Too low. When the air becomes to dry, which can happen when using air conditioning constantly, it can become uncomfortable. It can dry out nasal passages and cause other health issues.

To manage humidity, you can add a humidifier or dehumidifier to your HVAC system, or use portable models. Portable models are fine for individual rooms (like a basement that has mold issues) but are not efficient for whole-home air quality. Your local HVAC service provider can add either a humidifier, dehumidifier or both to your HVAC system to help you keep a perfect level of moisture in your home for health and comfort year-round.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
3870 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. Suite 340-129
Duluth, GA 30096
(770) 475-9555

Improve Your HVAC with Optional Accessories

Your HVAC system is designed to keep your home comfortable year-round, cooling the hot summer air and heating it up when the temperatures drop in the winter. While a good HVAC system can easily control temperatures, it may need additional accessories to provide clean, comfortable air. Here are a few optional accessories to consider adding to your system to improve your HVAC efficiency and air quality in your home.

High Capacity Air Filters

The air in your home is circulated constantly and needs good filtration to keep it safe and healthy for your family. The filter you use in your HVAC system can make a big difference on the purity of your home’s air. High capacity air filters provide a higher level of filtration, removing more contaminants from the air, including molds and other allergens.

Humidifiers

The air in your home can become very dry, especially with air conditioning. A humidifier helps improve the comfort level of your home and can help keep respiratory and skin issues from dry air from occurring.

Advanced Thermostats

Upgrading your thermostat can improve the efficiency and comfort of your HVAC system. Advanced options include wi-fi capabilities so you can change the programming from anywhere. Setting it to more mild temps when you are sleeping or away from home can dramatically impact your energy bill; many newer models can even be controlled through your smartphone.

Talk to your local HVAC service company about accessories you can add to your HVAC system when you schedule your next service. Remember, annual service can prevent breakdowns and extend the life and efficiency of your HVAC system, so make sure to keep up with the needed maintenance.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
1925 Lena Carter Road
Buford, GA 30519
(770) 475-9528

Thermostat Control: Tips on Keeping It Cool

When the temperatures rise, so does your electric bill. It can be costly to keep your home comfortable when the temperature hit the 90’s and triple digits. You want your home to be climate controlled, but at what cost? Having a programmable thermostat and using it properly can help you stay cool while managing the cost of your comfort. Here are some tips to manage your thermostat to stay cool without breaking the bank on energy bills.

  • Program your thermostat. The best efficiency tip is to program your thermostat to only be at the lowest cooling setting when you are home during the warmest hours. Thermostats should be set to automatically switch a higher temperature when the house is empty and at night.
  • Use moderate settings. Keep your settings moderate for temperatures. Good energy settings include 78 degrees when you are home during peak hours, 82 degrees when you are sleeping and 85 when you are away from home.
  • Don’t forget to change your programming for trips. If you are going to be away for a few days, make sure to change your thermostat settings to away temperatures for the entire time.
  • Get a smartphone app. Many advanced thermostats can be controlled through an app on your phone. This gives you control to change the setting if you will be coming home early or not coming home at all. Why cool your home if no one is there to enjoy it?

Just making a few changes on how your use your thermostat can save you hundreds of dollars each summer on your cooling bills. Talk to your local HVAC provider about updating to a hi-tech, efficient thermostat if you still are using an older, manual model.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
1925 Lena Carter Road
Buford, GA 30519
(770) 475-9528

How Often Should You Change HVAC Filters?

One of the most important DIY maintenance you can do for your HVAC system is ensure the air filter is kept clean. A dirty or clogged air filter can put extra stress on your HVAC system, causing it to work harder and be more likely to have system issues. Plus, air filters help improve the quality of the air in your home for the health of your family. So, how often should you change your HVAC air filters?

First, there is not a set rule on changing your HVAC air filter as each home and filter is different. An air filter manufacturer may say to change the filter every two months, which is a good rule of thumb, but not always accurate for all filters. Most 1-3-inch filters are suggested to change in two month intervals, but you should check the manufacturer recommendations for your filter.

Secondly, consider the environment. If you use your HVAC every day and have kids, pets and a full house, your air filter is working overtime. It may need to be changed more often than recommended. On the other hand, if you only have 1 person living in a big home and only use the HVAC system when you are home, the filter may not need to be changed for 3-4 months. The best advice? Check it regularly – if it looks dirty before it is scheduled to be replaced, switch it for a new one.

Changing the air filter is just part of maintaining your HVAC system. You should also schedule regular tune-ups and service 1-2 a year. Your HVAC service tech will also check your filter and change it out if needed.

Posted on behalf of:
Western Aire Heating & Cooling
264 Buchanan Highway
Dallas, GA 30157
(770) 505-7426

Energy Savings Equals Greater Profits

One of the largest expenditures for many industrial businesses is energy costs. Every penny that is spent on electricity, gas and other energy expenditures directly affects your bottom line. One of the largest energy drains in manufacturing and warehousing is climate control. Finding ways to reduce energy use through your HVAC system can minimize your overhead and equal more profits every year.

There are a few ways you can cut down on energy used for heating and cooling your business. If you have an older commercial HVAC system, it is most likely less efficient than the options now available. While upgrading your system does require an initial investment, the savings in the long run can pay for the initial cost and add up to yearly savings off your energy bill. Some upgrades to consider for your HVAC system include:

  • Replacing with a new efficient HVAC system. If your HVAC is ten or more years old, the efficiency of the new systems available can make a replacement worth the cost.
  • A retrofit of your existing system. Updating your existing system with a retrofit through a quality commercial HVAC service company can improve the efficiency of your system without the higher cost of complete replacement.
  • Upgrading to an automation system can help manage energy costs; your system can be controlled remotely and the automated system can minimize energy use.

Don’t let your profits go out the window with high energy bills. Talk to your local commercial HVAC experts to find ways to improve your energy use for climate control in your business. A simple upgrade to your HVAC system can save thousands in energy costs that directly affects your profits.

Posted on behalf of:
JS Thomas Service, Inc
4085 Nine McFarland Dr
Alpharetta, GA 30004
(770) 475-2600

HVAC Systems and Allergies

When the spring and summer months arrive, so do many of the most common allergens that plague many people. From the pollen and grasses to the molds and dust, allergies can become a nightmare. One place that should be a haven for those with allergies is their home. With a good HVAC system in place, closing the doors and windows should create a mostly allergen-free environment. However, to create this escape from allergens, there are a few HVAC maintenance tips you should consider.

  • Air filter. For those who suffer from allergies, a high quality air filter for your HVAC system is a must. You want a HEPA filter that will clear dust, pollen, dander and mold spores from the air. These filters can need to be replaced as much as once a month during peak allergy season.
  • Duct cleaning. Ducts can be a source of nasty allergens, spreading more dust and mold throughout your home. A thorough duct cleaning in the spring is a good way to ensure you are not spreading more allergens around your home.
  • Dehumidifier. If you live in a region that has high humidity during the summer, the combination of heat and humidity creates a hot bed for mold in your home. Adding a dehumidifier to your HVAC system can help keep these harmful mold spores from sprouting inside your home.

Spring is a good time to schedule your HVAC maintenance to create an allergen-free zone for allergy sufferers during the summer months. Call your local HVAC service specialists to schedule an annual tune-up and discuss filter, duct cleaning and dehumidification options to improve the air quality inside your home, while keeping it cool and comfortable during the hot summer months.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
Buford, GA
(770) 475-9528

Is the Air in Your Home Making You Sick?

There’s almost always more in the air that you breathe than just the oxygen we need to live. Moisture, dust, mold and many other micro-organisms are also entering your lungs every time you take a breath. In a confined area, like your home, the air can become unhealthy when too many of these contaminants are present in your air, making you and your family sick. 

Controlling the Quality of the Air in Your Home

There are several ways the air in your home can become unhealthy. Dust and allergens can be recycled through your home, collecting more each time the air is circulated throughout the house. Humans and animals create dust, plus excess moisture can cause mold spores to grow and enter the air. All these contaminants can stress allergies and cause health issues. To control these factors, you need a system in place to regulate the air quality within your home. 

Most HVAC systems will have some type of filtration for the air that it controls. However, the filters range greatly in what contaminants they are able to remove. Talk to your HVAC service professional about the level of filtration your HVAC filter is providing, and what additional options are available. 

Humidity is another factor that can compromise the air in your home. Too much moisture can lead to mold growth, which can cause both health issues and damage to your home. Consider investing in a whole home dehumidifier, which can control the level of moisture to reduce the likelihood of mold growth. 

You want the air in your home to be clean and healthy for your family. Schedule an appointment to have your air quality tested by your HVAC professional. Your HVAC service company can offer solutions to ensure the air in your home is efficiently filtered, and at the right moisture level to keep your family healthy.

Posted on behalf of:
ClimateSmith, LLC
Alpharetta, GA
(770) 475-9555