I love my in-laws I really do, but they are hysterical to watch and listen to as they are aging quickly these days. They argue about everything from the heating and air conditioning temperatures to how short the lawn should be cut. Since they refuse in home care, we have been trying to entice them into a senior community to live in, but they want nothing to do with it in any way, shape or form. We have explained to them that they would have more company and less responsibilities that they were little self contained apartments where they would have their own personal kitchens, living spaces and HVAC units. That’s when my dad piped in listening attentively asking for more information. My mom is always cold and wants the heater on full blast through the air vents, but dad hot by nature being a big man just can’t take it anymore and is desperate for air conditioning relief. So, I saw my in towards this idea right there! I started to tell him how these more modern living units each have their own separate zone control where you can control your own personal thermostat in your room for whatever your body temperature prefers. I explained how many older people have these same experiences, so that they set up the living units to individual preferences. He just loved the idea that my mom could have her own thermostat in her room and be heated to her content, while he could blast his own air conditioning in his room through his own thermostat. I sold them on it that day.
We have the most amazing five bedroom summer cabin on the lake, it even has a hot tub on the back porch complete with awesome firepit too. It really has been a prime gift for our family over the years with endless memories to look back on when we get older and have kids of our own. Don’t get me wrong, when you throw a family of 8 into one small cabin there will still be some bickering along the way. The one thing no one likes in the least is the clean up and packing down that goes on when we are about to leave. We don’t use the cabin in the winter, so it’s important that we actually clean out all of the air vents thoroughly and change the filters if the summer proved to be harder on the HVAC Air Conditioning Unit as well. This summer it was seriously hot and humid and we had to use our HVAC cooling along with stationary fans to help circulate the cool air with so many people in the house. My mom is so meticulous that she wanted us to actually dust all the fans as well before we put them away for the summer. It’s so tedious, but then again, it does make less work when we return next summer which makes sense. For when vacation comes around again we are all so excited to get to the cabin, that the last thing we want to be doing is checking ductwork, cleaning air vents and doing maintenance checks on the HVAC system. So, I get where she is coming from today.
When my husband and I retired, we moved down south. We’d spent our entire lives in the northeastern part of the country, where the weather is typically cold and snowy. For the majority of the year, we needed to run our furnace. We dealt with snow and ice, sub zero temperatures, and lots of household maintenance. It was such a relief to leave behind the snow shovels, wool coats, ice scrapers and snow boots. We bought a home in an area with a very mild climate. We no longer require a heating system as powerful as a gas furnace. We are able to keep our home comfortable year round with an electric heat pump. A heat pump combines both heating and cooling capacity in one unit. During the long months of hot temperatures and high humidity, the electric heat pump acts exactly like an air conditioner. It both cools the home and combats excessive moisture, and it runs very efficiently. In the brief winter season, the heat pump reverses operation to pump heat into the home. It is far more energy efficient than the gas furnace. It doesn’t overly dry the air, so there is no need to invest in a humidifier. Plus, the heat pump provides very clean and safe temperature control. It doesn’t introduce airborne contaminants, and doesn’t burn fossil fuels to generate heat. This avoids the threat of fire and combustion byproducts, such as carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. I am so happy with the heat pump, and living in the milder weather. I wish we would have moved down south much earlier in life.
My husband and I are planning to build a home from the ground up. We have already purchased the land, and we are now working on the floor plan. There are so many decisions to make, and we want to get everything right. One of the biggest concerns is the type of HVAC system to install. We realize that the heating and cooling system will greatly impact the comfort and health of the home, as well as our budget. We have been researching different styles of HVAC, from forced air furnaces to boilers, and we came across geothermal heat pumps. At first, we didn’t think we could afford a geothermal system because the purchase price and installation costs are so extremely expensive. However, these systems are so wonderfully energy efficient that we expect to spend about seventy percent less on heating and cooling costs as compared to a more traditional HVAC unit. It will only cost us about a dollar a day to keep the home at the perfect temperature all year round. We also like the fact that a heat pump provides both heating and cooling capacity, which means only one piece of equipment to maintain. Because there are very few moving parts, a heat pump requires very little upkeep. This type of system is also far more durable than conventional air conditioners which tend to only last around eight to ten years. We can expect the underground loop system to last around fifty years and the actual heat pump to remain effective for more than twenty years with regular and proper care.
When I moved into my new house, the construction process was not quite finished. Unfortunately, the completion of the house was behind schedule by several weeks and my lease had run out at my apartment. Rather than put all of my possessions in storage and rent a hotel, I decided to move into my unfinished house. All of the walls, windows, and most of the appliances were already in place. I convinced my brother, Mike, to help me with the move and he was not happy. The temperature that day was in the upper nineties and the humidity was extreme. We were sweating just from breathing and standing still, and we needed to haul my couch, bed and all sorts of stuff out of the fourth floor apartment. We then packed everything into the back of a moving van that had no air conditioning. When we arrived at the new house and Mike discovered that my HVAC system wasn’t up and running yet, I thought he might have an aneurysm. At least there was an HVAC service vehicle parked in the driveway, and the technicians were working on the installation. While we unloaded all of the furniture and carried tons of boxes in the house, we kept track of the various HVAC technicians. We were really hoping they would finish up with the ductwork and air conditioner. It would have felt really great to adjust my thermostat for the first time and blast the cooling system. I invested a great deal of money into a state-of-the-art air conditioner with variable speed technology, zone control and a smart thermostat. I told Mike all about it while he helped me carry my mattress and box spring.
When I bought my new house, it needed quite a few updates. The house was nearly a hundred years old, and had never been well cared for. One of the most pressing issues was the condition of the HVAC equipment. I live in an area that gets hit with long, cold winters and hot humid summers. I moved into the house during the fall, and I knew that the vicious winter weather was just around the corner. I needed to make sure that the furnace would operate safely and effectively. I immediately contacted a local HVAC contractor for assistance. A certified technician came to the house, inspected the entirety of the HVAC system and provided recommendations. I was relieved that both the air conditioner and furnace could be salvaged. Although both units requires some replacement parts, thorough cleaning, and an overall maintenance procedure, the HVAC technician believed that the heating and cooling system would last for several more years. His biggest concern was with the ancient duct system. Moisture had caused corrosion and quite a few small holes that would allow heated or cooled air to escape. Not only would this waste energy and cause higher running costs, but also welcome unconditioned air into the house. This can introduce contaminants into breathing air and lead to health issues. There’s also the fear of backdrafting from appliances which can result in exposure to carbon monoxide. The HVAC technician provided a service called Aeroseal duct sealing, which blows adhesive particles into the air ducts. This seals the flaws in the duct system from the inside out, and ensures access to even concealed areas.
I have never been so excited to move out of my parents house and return to college. At first it was because I hated having to be stuck in a house where I couldn’t do what I wanted and had to get used to having a curfew again. After a week into summer though I realized that my school had actually kept their HVAC system at a much lower level than my mother which meant that I had to readjust to a hotter climate even while being indoors. Now it isn’t like my mother kept the house at a high temperature, but she refused to have the system go any lower because she said it made the electric go up a hefty sum in our monthly payments. My school system kept the dorm rooms and the classrooms at about 70 degrees. This was partially because many of the school buildings were historic and close to 100 years older. With such old buildings the air conditioning systems and ducts were possibly so old that they tended to have holes and broke down easily. To make sure none of the students were sweaty or hot they made sure to keep the buildings as cold as possible and even put window units in each classroom so that if the system as a whole broke down the classes could still be comfortable. Some of the students began to think that a good portion of our tuition fees went to paying for the air conditioning while the other students swore it had to go to the water bills because our sprinklers were constantly on and watering some section of the grounds throughout the day sometimes even twice a day.
I love long road trips. The idea of going cross country and sleeping in either tents or old school motels seems almost charming to me. That was until I heard about one bad experience my friend had while driving up north and then back down again. Apparently her car’s air conditioning system is a bit touchy. It won’t kick on the coolant unless you are going over a specific speed limit. Even then it can sometimes turn off it you are having the A/C on full blast making it to where you’re just blowing air from outside through which can be worse depending on the climate. My friend told me that during the trip up north the A/C was working fine and that because she decided to drive through the night there wasn’t too much to complain about. That quickly changed though on the way back home as she had picked up two friends along with a cat. Due to the increase in bodies along with the fact they were now driving down in the middle of the day, the A/C had decided to be a bit of a pain and completely stop working while they were stuck in a traffic jam just a few hours away from home. My friend said she felt as though she was melting into the leather and was sticking her head out of the car just to attempt to feel a cool breeze pass by the car. Now that they’re back home she refuses to go anywhere in the car until the sun has begun to go down just to make extra sure that she is not going to get caught in the heat without the A/C working.
My husband and I have never really liked the idea of taking our dog to the groomer. We have always thought of dog groomers as unnecessary and a little bit frivolous. Besides, we had always been able to manage the grooming needs of our fluffy dog before! We thought that we could avoid visiting the groomer altogether. Unfortunately, we were incorrect on that front. One day, our dog rolled in a massive, muddy pit of slime when we were visiting the dog park. We were supposed to visit my parents that day and my husband needed to run a few errands before we departed. We knew that neither one of us would have the time to take the dog home and bathe her! Off to the groomers we went. When we arrived to drop the dog off at the groomers, I was surprised to note the temperature. I guess I had thought that a dog groomer would not put a great deal of thought into something like heating and cooling, but I was reassured that we would be leaving our precious pup in good hands. Any business that was fastidious enough to invest in top-of-the-line heating and cooling equipment clearly cared about the comfort of the customers and the dogs. The air conditioning was on in the lobby, but it was not so cold that the freshly shampooed poodle headed to the drying station would start to shiver. The air conditioning was pleasant but not overwhelming, and my husband and I were happy to give the groomer our business. Best of all, the HVAC settings made our dog comfortable, and that meant that she was happy and well behaved. Perhaps good HVAC is a dog groomer’s secret weapon.
My wife and I just had a baby! Obviously, babies are a lot of work, and they are a big deal. As new parents, my wife and I have been incredibly protective and probably a bit paranoid when it comes to our new infant’s safety and health. She has been sneezing quite a bit recently, and my wife and I were worried so we took her to the pediatrician. The pediatrician pronounced the baby healthy overall, but they recommended that we invest in a high-quality air purifier for the baby’s room. They thought that the sneezing might be caused by various bits and particles in the air. My wife and I immediately began researching the perfect air purifier. We ended up taking turns feeding, burping, changing, and rocking the baby while the other parent searched online for the best air purifiers on the market. We ended up finding a great air purifier that came with a number of very impressive features. Not only was the specific air purifier extremely quiet, it was also named best in its class by team of HVAC experts! It came with an advanced HEPA filter and appeared to be specifically designed to remove common air pollutants such as allergens, dust, viruses, bacteria, and pet dander. Once we installed the air purifier in the baby’s room, we were startled and pleased to discover that it also worked wonders on certain odors! It also featured a really nifty auto mode that operated without our manual adjustment. Talk about a new parent’s dream air purifier!