Category Archives: IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

Easy Use, Easy Maintenance: Electronic Air Cleaners at Work

Here at Home Comfort, we take indoor air quality seriously. These days most people in the United States spend up to 90% of their time indoors, and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) lists indoor air pollution as one of the top five environmental health risks we face today. With energy-efficient homes insulated and sealed tighter than ever against fresh outside air, the quality of the air inside a person’s home is often filled with far more pollutants than the air outside, even if you’re using a high-quality air filter and changing it regularly. For those who are concerned about allergens and indoor air pollutants, and would like to take an extra measure to ensure the cleanliness of the air in their homes, installing a whole-home electronic air cleaner may help.

Electronic air cleaners take the job of a normal air filter for a ducted heating and cooling system and take it to the next level. Rather than simply trapping particles in a tightly-knitted, mesh-like media, electronic air cleaners trap particles by giving them an electrostatic charge them as they pass through the filter, causing them to stick to a collection surface rather than passing through the your duct system and into your home. To see an electronic air cleaner in action, check out the video below. It will show you a demonstration of American Standard’s Accuclean™ Whole-Home Air Filtration system at work.

Besides their efficiency, electronic air cleaners have a simple cleaning process. And, since the filters are washable, you can save money in the long run rather than purchasing disposable filters every few months. If you click on the video below, you’ll see a demonstration for cleaning the Accuclean™ system:

Basically, if you can vacuum your carpets, drapes, and furniture, you can clean this air cleaner regularly with no trouble!

If you have a ducted heating and cooling system and like the idea of an efficient, easy-to-maintain air filtration system, give our estimators at Home Comfort a call. We can match the right electronic air cleaner model with your home or business.

Works Cited:

http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/airclean.html

Save Time, Shop Online: Home Comfort Introduces Its New and Improved Filter Webpage

Dont_Forget_Change_Air_Filter

 

Over the past few months, the tech team at Home Comfort has been working hard on a new and improved version of our online filter sales webpage. As of this month, our filter page is up and running with more sizes and brands of filters available for purchase than ever before! As an added convenience to our customers, we have made our filters available for purchase and delivery to any part of the contiguous forty-eight states.

Changing your air filter regularly is an important part of the overall maintenance of your HVAC system, and it’s a good idea to keep extra filters handy, in case they need to be replaced between regular maintenance visits. Since air filter access points are usually discreetly located, it can be easy to forget to change your filter on a regular basis – especially when you add a trip to the hardware store for a new filter to an already busy schedule. Home Comfort can take away some of that hassle by delivering a case of air filters directly to your door!

Never thought of keeping a whole case of filters handy? Buying goods in bulk is a common way for families to stock up on groceries and other essentials at a lower price. Why not give buying filters in bulk a try, too? Our air filters webpage offers many of our filters by the case, which keeps our prices competitive and puts less strain on your wallet in the long run. Other brands on our site, such as our Aprilaire selection, are still only available for purchase in single units, but we work hard to make sure the prices for our individually packaged filters are a bargain, too.

Do you need a custom-sized filter? Or maybe a filter with a specific MERV rating? Don’t fret! If you don’t see the filter you need on our website, contact us by phone or email. We may be able to place a special order just for you!

Programming Your Thermostat: Maximize Your Home Efficiency

Honeywell Prestige Thermostat

Honeywell Prestige Thermostat

It can be easy to overlook that little panel on the wall that controls your home’s heating and air conditioning. Homeowners be warned – that thermostat could be costing you hundreds of dollars every year if it is not properly programmed.

Programmable thermostats can help make your home feel more comfortable and allow you to save energy as well. In order to get the most out of your digital thermostat, it helps to have some advice on how to properly use it.

Programmable thermostats respond to changes in the home’s temperature, so you do not want to install it anywhere near a window or a vent. The air blowing directly on the thermostat could give it a false reading.

When you program your thermostat, be sure to set it to energy-efficient temperatures for extended periods of time. Lower the set point during the eight hours you and your family will be sleeping, as well as the eight hours you are at work and your children are at school. Raise the set point for the times when you and your family are home in the morning and evening. To make your home a little warmer during the day on weekends and holidays, use the manual adjustment to raise the temperature slightly.

Many homeowners also find programmable thermostats convenient for keeping the house comfortable for pets, and warm enough to prevent water pipes from freezing and bursting when they are away on vacation. Your digital thermostat may even have a vacation feature that allows you to create a temperature program for use during these times. If so, be sure to use it to maximize the efficiency of your thermostat.

During a routine maintenance, Home Comfort technicians are happy to take a look at your thermostat’s programming and help set it to be more comfortable and energy efficient. The savings you get from a proper thermostat control system can more than pay for the cost of maintenance. We offer a full line of thermostats with a variety of features. We even have thermostats you can control using your computer or smart phone! We can help you choose the best model for your home and lifestyle. Call us today to schedule a money-saving appointment!

Carbon Monoxide and Your HVAC System

Carbon monoxide is a by-product of combustion, present whenever fuel is burned. It is produced by common home appliances, such as gas or oil furnaces, fireplaces, charcoal grills, and wood burning stoves. It is odorless and colorless; an unseen foe in an unprotected home.

Any of these sources can contribute to a CO problem in the home. If a home is vented properly, carbon monoxide will most likely be safely vented to the outside. But in today’s “energy efficient” homes this is frequently not the case. Tightly constructed/sealed homes can trap CO-polluted air in a home year-round. Furnace heat exchangers can crack, vents can become blocked, inadequate air supply for combustion appliances can cause conditions known as backdrafting or reverse stacking, which force contaminated air back into the home.

Everyone is at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. Experts believe, however, that individuals with greater oxygen requirements such as unborn babies, infants, children, senior citizens, and people with coronary or respiratory problems are at greater risk.

Why is carbon monoxide so dangerous?

The great danger of carbon monoxide is its attraction to hemoglobin in the bloodstream. When breathed in, carbon monoxide replaces the oxygen which cells need to function. When CO is present in the air, it rapidly accumulates in the blood, causing symptoms similar to the flu, such as headaches, fatigue, nausea, dizzy spells, confusion, and irritability. As levels increase, vomiting, loss of consciousness, and eventually brain damage or death can result.

At Home Comfort, we frequently receive calls from our customers worried about carbon monoxide poisoning in their homes.  We can quickly make a visit to your home and use a detector to determine first if there is any carbon monoxide present and if there is we can find the leak and fix it.  If you are concerned that you may have a leak or just want some reassurance that your family is safe, give us a call to schedule a visit.

Reference:

http://www.extension.iastate.edu/pages/communications/co/co1.html