Tag Archives: heating and air

Fast Ways to Lower Your Energy Bill

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Try these quick and easy tips to start seeing energy and cost savings in the near future.

Make Your Landscape Work For You

Look outside the home to save money on costs inside the home. Radiant heat from the sun can be working directly against your air conditioner when your shades and blinds are raised. But if you plant a 6-8 foot deciduous tree near your home, it will start shading your windows as soon as the first year.

Depending on the type of tree and the height of your home, it could start shading your roof in as little as 5-10 years. That’s a quick return on investment, and creates a nice improvement to your landscaping.

Why deciduous? A deciduous tree blocks solar heat in the summer, but since it loses its leaves, will let sunlight and heat into the house during the winter months. Compare that to evergreens, which provide continuous shade, and won’t provide you with a benefit in the cooler months (1,2).

Make The Switch To LED

Have you switched to more energy efficient lighting? Making the switch to this modern option is one of the fastest ways to lowery our energy bill. For example, just by replacing your home’s five most frequently used light fixtures with Energy Star bulbs, you can save $75 per year.

LED bulbs save you the most money. You’ll save at least 75% by switching to this model compared to the traditional incandescent bulbs of the past that are no longer on the market. Even compared with halogen incandescents, LEDs use 25-30% less energy and last up to 25 times longer. For a small investment now, you can enjoy the cost savings on your energy bill for years to come (3).

Fix Air Leaks

For just a few dollars and an hour or two of your time, you could save 10% or more annually on your energy bill. Air leaks can waste energy and money quickly, both in summer months by letting hot air inside, and in winter months with resulting chilly drafts. Patching these leaks is one of the quickest and best money-saving tasks you can accomplish.

Your goal is to caulk, seal and weather strip any cracks or large openings that lead outside the home. When purchasing your caulk, keep in mind that you will likely need about one cartridge to complete the seal on two windows or doors. These tubes of window and door caulk range between $2 and $10.

Don’t forget to pick up a caulking gun to squeeze out the product and ensure proper application. This job will be done in just an hour or two, but you will enjoy the results immediately (1, 4).

Consider Storm Windows

Replacing old windows in your home with new, energy-efficient windows will provide the best return on investment, but will be a costly initial investment. A great alternative for a less expensive option is to use storm windows. Storm windows can still help you save a significant amount: approximately 12-33% on HVAC costs. They work by reducing the air movement into and out of existing windows (5).

Take Advantage Of The Weather

Did the weather man predict a cool night? Take advantage of “natural ventilation”. This type of ventilation relies on the chimney effect to keep a home cool. It works best if your evening forecast includes a cool night and a bit of a breeze. All you need for this quick energy saver is a good memory, the use of your windows and a cool summer night.

Turn off your cooling system and open your windows while you sleep, allowing the fresh, cool air to transfer into your house and giving your AC unit a break. Just don’t forget to shut the windows and blinds when you wake in the morning to capture the cool air inside the house (1,6).

Schedule A Professional Energy Audit

Before you write this off as another unnecessary expense, consider this: The goal of an energy audit from Greater Comfort is to provide an overview of how your home uses energy and find ways that you can reduce consumption without incurring large additional costs.

In other words, we want to help your system work more efficiently so that you can save money. We will determine if your home or building needs upgrades or other specific actions to improve efficiency. You will be given a list with specific action steps and can select those which make the most sense to you.

Call Us To Schedule Your Energy Audit Today

Call the experts at Greater Comfort today to ensure you’re getting the most savings as quickly as possible: 859-491-4915.

Sources:

  1. https://twitter.com/energysaver
  2. https://energy.gov/articles/energy-saver-101-infographic-landscaping
  3. https://energy.gov/energysaver/lighting-choices-save-you-money
  4. https://energy.gov/energysaver/projects/savings-project-how-seal-air-leaks-caulk
  5. https://energy.gov/energysaver/storm-windows?utm_source=nrgsvr_fb&utm_medium=socialpost&utm_campaign=generalpost&utm_content=1
  6. https://energy.gov/energysaver/spring-and-summer-energy-saving-tips
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6 Ways to Boost Your Home’s Value

maximize-the-value-of-your-home-with-your-furnace

When you’ve maintained your furnace well, you’ve set yourself up to get the approval of a would-be buyer.

What’s more is that realtors will tell you that the absence of proof that you’ve been maintaining your furnace can reduce the value of your home.

In theory, if you upgrade your furnace, the value of your home also increases by the full amount of the upgrade cost. But in reality, purchasing a new furnace doesn’t always increase the amount someone will pay when it comes to buying your home. Realtors tell you, however, that is does contribute to your home’s level of attractiveness to buyers. Continue reading

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How Your HVAC Impacts Your Quality of Sleep

greater comfort HVAC newport kentucky

Let’s face it – a good night’s sleep is invaluable. And the last thing you want negatively impacting a good night’s sleep is an HVAC system that isn’t up to par. If your lack of sleep is related to your HVAC system, there is good news – there is a fix! Check out the ways a smoothly running HVAC will keep your slumber sound.

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Buying a Home? Here’s What to Look for to Ensure Ultimate Comfort

HVAC in greater cincinnati greater comfort

We’ve talked about – both in the short-term, and the long-term – how to take care of your HVAC as you prepare your home to sell. But what about when you are on the opposite end, and you are looking to buy a home? What are the things to look for in a heating and cooling system when you’re considering buying a home?

Here we breakdown a list of some of the top things to look for, and steps to take as you look for a new home.

1. Find out the system’s warranty and/or protection plan.

Many leading brands offer warranties on their systems. First, you want to check that the homeowners have done all they can do so that this warranty is still valid. Second, eventually you want to see the details and some sort of proof of that protection plan or warranty so you know what kind of potential costs or what type of system plan you’re inheriting.

2. Ask for the system history.

While this might not always be available, many homeowners will keep track of their system’s history – in part because they know they may one day sell their home. (That tells you it might be a good idea, as a current homeowner, to keep an organized account of all the ongoing maintenance you perform on your system, assuming you one day intend to sell your home.)

While maintenance doesn’t necessarily mean you will avoid emergencies or costly repairs, it does tell you that certain necessary maintenance has been performed on your system – and that’s great for peace of mind.

Many homeowners will be happy to share with you the regular maintenance they have performed on their home and/or any repairs done on the system. They keep track of that because they want to show you the system has as much as value as possible; for you, as the potential home buyer, it’s good to see more information that helps you better value the current state of the system.

3. Take note if there are carbon monoxide detectors in the home.

A lack of carbon monoxide detectors does not impact your purchase decision – but it is something to look for. Keep in mind if these aren’t present in the home, you’ll likely want to add them.

4. Don’t forget your home inspection.

It’s hard to believe you would forget it, but be sure not to! Once you’re serious about potentially purchasing a home, you’ll want to do a home inspection – not just to take a look at the heating and cooling system, but to look at many of the other potential issues within the home. These experts are trained to look for things that the current home owner may not want to disclose, or that the current home owner may simply not even be aware of.

While more and more people see this is a critical part of the home purchase process, you still hear stories of people who neglected to have an expert inspect a home before purchasing it. While it’s mandatory for many people getting a loan, be sure not to forget this part of your home buying process.

When a certified technician takes a look at your potential furnace, they are able to tell you the condition of it, and they can give a better idea if long-term maintenance really has properly and consistently occurred. No matter what an owner tells you, an expert is there to tell you what they believe will happen in the future in terms of necessary repairs or even replacement.

If your home owner inspector tells you that you’ll need to repair the system in the very near future, you’ll want to take that into consideration before purchasing the home – or in the eventual purchase price of the home, it should be reflected. Most homeowners recognize the value of a furnace – just like how most home buyers recognize the value as well.

If your home inspector tells you that expensive repairs or that replacement is needed, give us a call so that we can help you be more informed and know more about your options. Even if you don’t anticipate buying a new furnace in the near future, any time you can plan ahead it makes the entire process easier.

Ensure Ultimate Comfort in Your Next Home

There are quite a few factors that go into the purchase of new home – the size, the location and other critical components of the property are just a few of the factors we tend to focus on. Don’t forget the importance of finding out key details that relate to your heating and cooling system, which can keep your family safe and comfortable in your new home.

If you consider these 4 tips you’ll have greater peace of mind, and greater comfort, in your next home. Give the experts at Greater Comfort a call today at 859-491-4915 if you need help finding out the potential costs of a new system.

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Our Top Endorsements: Read the Reviews From Our Loyal Customers

greater comfort fort thomas kentucky refer and rewards

We’re proud to have loyal customers in Ft. Thomas, Alexandria, Newport, Cold Spring, Covington, Dayton, Florence, Loveland, Hyde Park, West Chester and the entire Greater Cincinnati and beyond. (See all the areas we cover in Northern Kentucky, Southeastern Indiana and Southwest Ohio.) Being able to serve the Tri-State area also means we’ve collected quite a few endorsements over the years.

See some of the highlights from our loyal customers speaking to our high level of service, expertise, timeliness and our professionalism below.

Be sure to keep reading about how you can join our Refer & Rewards program.

Very Professional

“I just used [Greater Comfort] for a heating tune up/cleaning. The service man came on time, was very professional and I feel like he was very thorough with his work. He explained everything that he was doing (because I was curious as I know nothing about HVAC).

Our system is old and instead of trying to upsell me a more expensive system (which I feel most companies do), he was very thorough and worked to get everything cleaned to get our system running as best as it can. I plan to have them back in the spring/summer to do our AC unit. I was very pleased with the service and I’m happy to support a great local company.” – Valerie

Choosing a Local Company

“I started using Greater Comfort because of being local. I’ve consistently been pleased with their timely service. Today as I changed my filter, it tore and part of the filter frame was sucked into the furnace when it came back on. Within one minute of calling, the on call service tech phoned back.

When I explained the issue, he asked for some furnace information and then he would be willing to make a service call, but he would be willing to talk me through the easy repair if I was comfortable. As he started to explain I told him I’ve got this, thank you so much. He even offered to stay on the phone with me but I told him not necessary. Fixed, 2 minutes. Now this is customer service if there ever was!” – Darlene G.

Excellent Work

“Just want to say, Cody Martin at Greater Comfort is a great employee! He does excellent work, represents the company well, and is a joy to be around. I would recommend Greater Comfort Heating and Air to anyone! They do excellent work!” – Chelsey W.

Humidifier Install

“Robert Baker did a great job with our humidifier installation. He was thorough and very professional.” – Timothy A.

Performed with Integrity

“The two technicians were wonderful! They explained the entire problem step by step and how they were fixing each step. I particularly was impressed with their integrity as they pointed out that something was a truly minor repair rather than a major repair that the previous company made it out to be. I would highly recommend your service to others!” – Joy C.

Answered Questions

“Great job on my project and working within my schedule to meet my needs. The technician was great, very knowledgeable and patient in answering all my questions.” – Lonnie S.

Very Knowledgeable

“[Jeff] is very knowledgeable and did a great job fixing our furnace in a very efficient timely manner. I would also like to mention how helpful Angel was well over the phone. All in all a great experience.” – Ryan

Work Performed In Detail

“I want to Thank the technician for doing an outstanding job on a recent appointment at my house. He was very professional and explained the work he performed in detail.” – Ronald

Timely Service

“Quick service on one of my rental properties, the gentleman that lives in the condo was very concerned about a fire, the tech took care of the problem, explained to me what the problem was, neat, clean, no mess left behind. He is the type of tech I want working on my property. – John B.

Terrific Experience

“There are good people in this world, the people I spoke with were terrific! My situation caused me a couple sleepless nights and wondered how I was going to pay for this. You were at my door 1 hour after I called and the cost was way below what I expected and they still worked with me so I could afford the services. I will refer all my friends and people I know that need help to Greater Comfort. Thank You and God Bless.” – Christy

We Want to Reward All Our Loyal Customers Like You

Want to support us like these loyal customers? Give us a review on Facebook or join the Refer & Rewards program: refer 2 customers, and you receive one-year free preventative maintenance. Refer 4 customers, and receive a new air cleaner or humidifier (install cost not included). See all the other rewards and details here.

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How to Protect Your Furnace From the Cold

hvac in cincinnati greater comfort

Your furnace works hard to keep you warm and cozy by both heating and circulating air throughout your home in the winter. On top of this, your filtration system rids the air in your home of impurities.

Your furnace really does a lot to take care of you during the cold months. Believe it or not, you can return the favor: maintenance by an experienced professional, light cleaning and simple measures to keep your furnace from working too hard can greatly impact how efficiently your unit will run—and how long it will last. (1).

Take these 5 simple steps to save yourself time and money this winter—and to keep your furnace running as efficiently as possible, for as long as possible.

1. Change your filters.

Want to know one of the easiest ways to maintain your system? Your furnace is already working hard to keep your home cozy, but a clogged filter will force it to work harder to heat your home. Make sure to change your filter regularly: you can usually tell when a filter needs changing just by looking at it—but you can always ask us how often to change out your current unit’s filters. Keep in mind that replacing furnace filters costs far less than the damage caused by neglecting them (1, 2).

2. Clear the area around your external intake pipe.

Have a high-efficiency, modern furnace with intake and exhaust pipes outside your house? If so, your intake is subject to obstructions and debris like snow, ice, soot buildup, or even animal nests. This can causes lower efficiency as well as carbon monoxide buildup so it is important to remove anything that could keep your chimney from properly ventilating your home. Ask us about any questions you have in terms of getting rid of debris (3, 4, 5).

3. Move objects near your furnace.

Within your home, you want to remove items around your furnace or water heater—especially anything flammable. Not only are household items and clutter around your furnace a fire hazard, they make it difficult to perform maintenance on the unit. As a result, you want to make sure to clear the area around your vents in addition to the area around your furnace. Furniture in front of a vent will prevent warm air from spreading throughout your rooms to properly heat your home (4, 6, 7.)

4. Take advantage of your programmable thermostat.

Programmable thermostats keep your furnace from running when you don’t need your home heavily heated. Give your furnace some time off during the day while your family is at work and school and there’s no one around to appreciate the heat. A programmable thermostat will allow you to run your furnace at lower temperatures while you’re away and warmer temperatures when you come home.

Also make sure you check your thermostat! It’s very easy to overlook the importance of checking your thermostat, but it’s a very quick way to make sure your furnace is running properly. Always make sure your thermostat is set to the correct heating settings and remember if it’s working properly it will respond immediately when you turn it on (4, 5, 8.)

5. Schedule your maintenance with us before the cold winter hits.

Make sure to prepare for winter months by scheduling an inspection before the cold weather hits. (This is usually in October, and when it comes to your A/C, you want to see us in April.) Reduce the chance of breakdowns and help your machine last longer by preparing your unit before it has to switch modes. Not only will inspections keep your unit working as efficiently as possible, it will keep your family warm and comfortable all winter, they will keep you safe. A professional can find and fix carbon monoxide leaks, which will save your family from experiencing negative physical side effects of this colorless odorless gas in the air (9).

Regular Maintenance Is Critical for Your Furnace’s Long Life

Call us today at 859-491-4915 or toll free at 844-491-4915 to learn more about our preventative maintenance agreement.

References/Further Reading

  1. http://www.lennox.com/lennox-life/comfort-matters/tips-maintenance/how-is-your-furnace-like-the-heart-of-your-home
  2. http://www.centralhtg.com/blog/preparing-your-furnace-for-winter
  3. http://www.lennox.com/lennox-life/comfort-matters/tips-maintenance/5-easy-ways-to-keep-your-furnace-happy
  4. http://www.lawescompany.com/7-quick-tips-to-prepare-your-furnace-for-the-cold
  5. http://afmheatcool.com/How_to_Get_Your_Furnace_Ready_for_Winter.aspx
  6. http://www.jerrykelly.com/blog/6-ways-to-prepare-your-furnace-for-winter
  7. http://www.allweatherheatandcool.com/how-to-prepare-your-furance-for-winter/
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Are Furnace Inspections Really Necessary?

cincinnati northern kentucky hvac tune up before winter

If you find yourself asking this question, the answer is a big YES, you do need regular maintenance by a certified HVAC expert!

The benefits of getting regular maintenance include that you will extend the life of your system, you will save energy, you will keep your family as safe as possible and can you can reduce other health related-risks.

Recall that part of what a furnace inspection does is make sure you have no carbon monoxide leaks. Because carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, it’s hard for homeowners to know or detect that these may exist in the home. These leaks lead to symptoms like nausea, dizziness, and headaches, but they can also lead to death.

Approximately 500 people die each year, and 15,000 people are taken to emergency rooms due to carbon monoxide exposure—even though this could have bee preventable in most cases. (Source.)

Also, many HVAC systems also require regular maintenance in order for the warranty to be valid. Despite how manufacturer’s insist that maintenance is necessary for our HVAC system, as much as 3 out of 4 service calls in the fall and winter months because of no heat were related to a lack of system maintenance, according to Angie’s List. That means that as much as 75 percent of those no-heat calls potentially could have been avoided with regular maintenance by qualified professionals.

HVAC Maintenance Program by Greater Comfort

Not only are you keeping your family safe and saving money when we make sure your system is running as efficiently as possible, we will check and record the following:

  • Check evaporator fan motor amp draws
  • Verify proper manifold gas pressure
  • Check induced draft motor amp draw
  • Verify all safety’s
  • Clean flame rod (if applicable)
  • Check heat exchanger
  • Inspect flue and fresh air make–up
  • Inspect contractors
  • Electric resistance heating elements
  • Disconnects & wiring
  • Tightening all electrical connections
  • Verify proper thermostat operation & program

So Do I Really Need To Call my HVAC?

Again, if you want to make a small investment for the life of your HVAC system and to help ensure you don’t have an emergency situation when the cold temperatures hit, the right thing to do is to set up your maintenance with a qualified and trusted HVAC expert.

When you go to call your HVAC to get your tune-up, be sure that what you are getting is a comprehensive maintenance program. In other words, do a bit of research before you buy or agree to a contract/service visit. What you don’t want is to only receive service for one or a few items on the list you see above. Also be sure that you are contacting a qualified, trained technician.

In the end, it really isn’t just about safety—although that should be a compelling reason, too—but it is about preventative maintenance.

Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati and Southeastern Indiana Residents Turn to Greater Comfort

If you are looking for a reliable and trustworthy Heating & Air Conditioning Company, check out our exceptional reviews here, and give Greater Comfort a call today.

Source/Reference

  • http://www.angieslist.com/articles/how-often-should-you-have-furnace-inspection.htm
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The Ultimate Fall Maintenance Checklist

HVAC maintenance northern kentucky

Maintaining your heating and cooling system will help you combat unwanted costs and avoidable system failures. Of course calling for your fall tune-up is a vital step, where we come and check the gas or oil connections, your gas pressure, burner combustion and heat exchanger, and much more, to make sure you stay comfortable year-round.

Change Your Filters

When your furnace is forced to “work harder” to pull the air through, the more it will cost you, so be sure to replace your furnace filters on a monthly basis (or as your qualified HVAC professional tells you to do, depending on the climate where you live and your system).

Check the Fireplace

Have a professional check your chimney, clean when needed, and make sure the fireplace is working as it should.

Take a Look at Your Furnace!

Make sure nothing is near the furnace that shouldn’t be, such as something that could be flammable. Give the furnace a dust if it looks like it needs one!

Ask us About Sealing & Insulating

With winter around the corner, ask us about our recommendatinos for how you can insulate and seal air leaks. Whether those air leaks be in the attic, basement, a crawlspace, or around your windows and doors, you will notice the difference with these spaces taken care of.

Check That Your Carbon Monoxide Detector is Working

When you go to change out your air filter, just add one more thing to your list—checking the CO Detector. Yes, your furnace inspection is important to make sure your heat exchanger is not leaking, and a CO Detector is not meant to replace a tune-up, but this is a safety precaution to consider.

Regular System Checkups

You knew this had to be on the list! Regular maintenance is what you must do to make sure your furnace will run optimally, and when you need it most. This will save you money due to reduced energy requirements, keep you comfortable, and keep your intake pipe clear.

Look Outside the Home

Depending in your system, you may need to look at the exhaust and intake pipes that are on the exterior part of your home. Ask us for more information, but you want to make sure the  area around these pipes are clean from debris.

When You Have a Programmable Thermostat…Use it!

Being able to control your energy means you can better control your bill each month, as well as have a better sense of the demands you are putting on your system over time. Ask us if you have more questions about how to find comfort using a programmable thermostat. During your tune-up, we will ensure your thermostat is working as it should.

Consider Your Shades

Do you close your curtains or shades during the night? Give it a try and then you can open them back up during the day.

Need more reasons to take care of your home this Fall as you prepare for winter?  Here’s just a few reasons:

  • You can work to reduce allergy-causing pollutants
  • Ensure you don’t have carbon monoxide or gas leaks
  • Ensure you don’t have any disconnected or leaky fuel lines or connections
  • Ensuring your air flow is what it should be

Do your best to prevent any surprises. Call Greater Comfort to schedule a visit at your convenience 859-491-4915.

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Emergency Furnace Repairs In villa Hills Kentucky

emergency furnace repair in Villa Hills KentuckyNothing is worse than waking up to a heater that has quit working. I guess to be honest there is no good time for your furnace to quit. If you need emergency furnace repair in Villa Hills Kentucky, you can depend on Greater Comfort Heating and Air Conditioning.

24-Hour Emergency Service – 7 Days a Week

No matter what time of day or night, we have furnace repair specialists available. They are factory trained to work on every major brand of heating system. When you need to get your house warm and you want a quick, professional job, you can trust our technicians. We can provide you with the quality service to get your system up and running as soon as possible. Remember we are only a phone call away and we are here to serve you 24/7.

Why Choose Greater Comfort Heating and Air Conditioning?

When you call Greater Comfort, you are choosing a company that has a good reputation. We are one of the oldest heating and air companies in the Northern Kentucky area with over 60 years of dedicated service to our customers. We believe in providing each customer with quality service and individualized attention and care. When it comes to servicing your furnace in an emergency, we will take good care of you.

When To Call Your HVAC Repairman

When you notice your system isn’t running efficiently, you can assume your furnace or HVAC system needs attention. You may notice the rooms not heating as they should or that your furnace can’t keep up. You may also notice your utility bill is suddenly much higher than it should be. These are all indications there’s a problem. Greater Comfort can help you determine what’s wrong. We will provide a solution to your furnace issues that is economical. When you need emergency furnace repair in Villa Hills Kentucky, you can count on the fact that we will fix the underlining problem not just fix the symptom.

Emergency Furnace Repair in Villa Hills Kentucky

When you need the help of an HVAC company during an emergency, you can depend on the quality of service you receive at Greater Comfort Heating and Air Conditioning. We also offer routine maintenance on your heating and cooling system to ensure you don’t need repairs as often. Call today and let Greater Comfort Heating and Air Conditioning take care of your Villa Hills Kentucky Emergency furnace repairs.

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