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Heading out for summer vacation can be an exciting time for every member of your family. However, one thing you don’t want to have to worry about during vacation time is whether or not your energy bills are being unnecessarily increased by wasting energy at home. Here are some practical tips for how to save energy during summer vacation so you can enjoy your time away.

  • Use your programmable thermostat:Use your programmable thermostat and its pre-programmed set points to reduce the operation of your cooling system while you’re away. The thermostat can be set to provide a small amount cooling during the day so that the interior of your home doesn’t get too hot. It can automatically shut cooling down even more at night while you’re away.
  • Unplug energy-using appliances and devices:Before leaving for vacation, make sure to unplug appliances and devices that use standby energy. These can include computers, microwave ovens, stoves, televisions, and entertainment systems. Simply shutting them off will not be enough since they use small amounts of energy to maintain clocks, internal settings, and other features even when turned off. Unplug them completely or plug them all into a power strip that can be switched off when you leave.
  • Turn down the water heater:While you’re away on vacation, you won’t need hot water at home, so turning down the temperature settings on the water heater makes sense. Set the thermostat at well below the usual level or, if you are going to be gone for an extended period, shut the water heater off completely.
  • Close window blinds and curtains:Partially closing window blinds and curtains will help reduce sunshine getting into your home and increasing indoor temperatures. This will help keep the inside of your home cooler and prevent your air conditioner or heat pump from switching on unnecessarily.

For more than 56 years, Conditioned Air has been providing expert heating, cooling, and indoor air quality services to customers in Naples and throughout the surrounding communities in southwest Florida. Contact us today for more information on how to save energy during summer vacation.

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Event Recognizes Top Performing Contractors for Excellence in Sales and Customer Service of Rheem Heating, Air Conditioning, and Ventilation Products
The Conditioned Air team of Naples, Fla., joined Rheem® in celebration at the company’s Top Pro Partner™ awards dinner and reception in Washington, D.C. on April 24, 2018. The event recognized and rewarded an elite group of HVAC businesses that demonstrated excellence in Rheem sales, customer support, and overall service during 2017.
Pictured from left to right are Randy Roberts, vice president, sales, Rheem Air Division; Timothy DuPre, Conditioned Air; Jeff Zanella, Conditioned Air; Mike Branson, executive vice president and general manager, Rheem Air Division.
Photography courtesy of Rheem.

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In the hot and humid climate of Southwest Florida, air conditioning is practically a necessity during the hottest parts of the year, and a quality system can increase the value of your home significantly. Many older homes lack a central air conditioning system, so here are a few tips that will help when installing air conditioning in an older home:

installing air conditioning in an older homePrepare Your Home

For an air conditioning system to run efficiently without dramatically increasing your energy costs, your home must be reasonably sealed and insulated. Drafts around windows, doors and other penetrations in your exterior walls can allow cool air to escape, significantly increasing your cooling costs, and a lack of insulation will make it hard for your home to maintain a cool temperature. Before installing air conditioning in an older home, consider having an energy evaluation done to find out where your home needs proper sealing and additional insulation.

 

Choose a System Type

If your home has existing ducts for a furnace, adding a central air conditioning system can be a relatively inexpensive choice. If, however, ducts must be added, the costs will increase dramatically. In that case, you may want to consider adding a ductless mini-split system, which can cool one or more rooms without the need for traditional air ducts. If you are upgrading your heating system at the same time, another option may be a heat pump, which requires air ducts, but can both heat and cool your home efficiently and cost-effectively.

Size It Correctly

Often, especially in older homes, air conditioners are oversized to compensate for any problems with air leaks or poor insulation. An air conditioner that isn’t properly sized will run inefficiently, increasing energy costs. Oversized systems will cycle on and off frequently, preventing proper dehumidification and stressing components like the blower motor and fans. Systems that are too small will work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature. A professional should be used to size the system, using the proper Manual J procedures.

For more tips on installing air conditioning in an older home, talk to our team at Conditioned Air.