With the holiday season in full swing, baking, cooking and entertaining fill most of the time in the kitchen. With three trays of cookies in the oven and a hot pot of soup on the stove, chances are, the kitchen area is not the cleanest it’s ever been! While preparing for the holidays, it’s important not to forget about the harsh beating our appliances ensure at this time. One of the most forgotten about being the garbage disposal in the sink. The sink ensures the brunt of the mess and acts as a collect-all for sprinkles, left-over baking dough, dirty dishes and measuring cups. While the sink is a great place to collect the mess, the garbage disposal is not. It’s a wonderful convenience in the kitchen, but is not intended to withstand the abuse of foreign particles. Here are some tips to keeping your garbage disposal in working order during the holidays.
Everyone loves a steaming hot bath on a cold winter evening or cozying up in a clean, freshly washed blanket. Thanks to the hot water heater, those enjoyable moments are possible. The general lifespan of a hot water heater is 15 years, or more, so to ensure more enjoyable moments, it’s important to keep the water heater maintained and in proper working condition. There are also a few precautionary steps you can take to save energy, and save some money as well. Continue reading
One of the most costly plumbing fixes a homeowner can face is the repair of a water heater. They are an essential part of a home’s plumbing fixture, but if there is a water heater problem, a few telltale signs will indicate that it’s time for the professionals to take a look.
- The first indication that your water heater may have functionality issues is if there is a problem maintaining a constant water temperature. In case you are getting scalding hot water or freezing cold water, the most likely issue is that the thermometer in the tank is broken, therefore it cannot gauge the temperature of the water it sends through the plumbing. The good news is that the thermometer can easily be replaced to get your system back to working condition.
- The pilot light on the water tank is also a good thing to check often because it can signal a problem. If the pilot light is not staying lit, it could mean a few things. It could indicate that the gas is not reaching to the burner due to a faulty gas valve, or there may be an issue with the venting system. If either of those is the case, the pilot light will not light and you won’t get any hot water.
- Another problem that often affects water heaters is sediment build up at the bottom of the tank that causes strange noises while the heater is running. When this happens the heater heats the water and simultaneously burns the sediment, which isn’t good for the life of the tank. The heating element could actually become burnt out and the noise can signal an internal issue within the unit.
Because water heaters are so expensive and a vital part of the home, it is important to have regular maintenance performed to ensure the longevity of your water heater. Atlas Butler provides top of the line water heater maintenance and solutions for your Columbus home. We are here at your service 24 hours a day – 7 days a week!
Now that the seasons are turning and the weather outside is getting colder, many Columbus homeowners are starting to think about how they can reduce their heating bill. While the spring and summer season had you worrying about how to maintain cool during the hot summer heat, there are some different approaches for improving energy efficiency during the fall and winter. These 7 tips will help improve your home’s energy efficiency, especially during the frigid months of fall and winter.
Is your drainage or pipes feeling a little backed up? Is your sink or shower not flowing as well as it used to? Here are five ways to check if you’re in need a plumbing for your house, office space, or living area.
You eat right, take your vitamins, go to bed early, and even try to stay active, yet you find yourself bottled down with some type of flu that makes you feel off. What gives? You might not be sick; you may just have seasonal allergies. Allergies are very common this time of year with plants and flowers in full bloom. These tips can help you determine if your cold symptoms are actually seasonal allergies, but it is extremely important to note that if you are not feeling well, a doctor is the only one who can accurately determine what is causing your symptoms.
July is a hot month for Ohioans and it’s getting hard to beat the heat. Some days you have no choice but to crank the AC, but it doesn’t bode well for your utility bill at the end of the month! If you choose not to run the air conditioner, it can even feel like it’s hotter inside your home than it is outside. The main reason your home can feel this way is that the relative humidity can be much higher inside your home than outside. When your home is too humid it can feel much hotter than the actual temperature would suggest.
There are other reasons to want to manage the humidity in your home as well. Humidity that is too high or too low can be bad for your health and it can also have negative effects on the objects in your home. When you consider the potential hazards of humidity and how uncomfortable it can make your home, there are a lot of reasons to want to maintain the humidity in your home at a healthy level.
In the summer, humidity is at its highest and you want to keep it as low as possible. Running your air conditioner is one way to keep your home’s humidity in check, but there are cheaper options as well. These 12 tips will help you keep your home’s humidity down.
It’s summertime and with that comes the heat of summer. While it’s fun to enjoy the sunshine, you don’t want to bring the heat into your home. If your central air conditioner is under-performing, summer can be a rough few months. A technician will gladly help you fix it if there are issues, but if your unit is over 10 years old, you may find that you need to get it replaced. A typical central A/C system can last anywhere from 10 to 20 years, so most homeowners will have to purchase a new system at some point in their lives. Buying a new central air conditioning system can be a big purchase. Therefore, there are few things to keep in mind when choosing the right AC unit for your home and living area. The air conditioner plays an important role in the home, helping to circulate cool air, reduce humidity and maximize comfort. Air conditioning is also one of the most expensive improvements you’re likely to make, so it pays to do your homework and choose wisely.
Summer is just around the corner which means it’s time to wrap up your spring cleaning. As you go through your home and cross off items on your to-do list, don’t forget to checkup on your plumbing. Spring is a great time to make sure everything is working properly.
- Lower the water heater temperature. You might have cranked up the heat during winter, but by now the temperature should be set at 120oF. Lowering the water temperature can also save you money on utility bills by reducing your energy consumption.
- Check your sump pump. Pour a few buckets of water into the basin of your sump pump. Then wait for it to start and let the water flow before shutting off automatically. If it doesn’t behave properly then contact a plumber to figure out the problem.
- Check your gutters. Clean your gutters and downspouts of any debris and make sure the downspouts are attached properly and are facing away from your home. This is an important task because if your gutter is left neglected, it can cause damage to your home. Without a properly functioning gutter, water can build up around the foundation of your home and cause flooding.
- Look for leaks. Check your entire home for any leaking pipes. Look under the sinks, in the bathrooms, and outdoor faucets to make sure nothing is broken.
- Drain your water heater. Sediments deposited at the bottom of your water heater can cause corrosion and reduce the energy efficiency of the unit. Draining the water will flush away some of the sediments. Here’s a great article on how to drain your water heater.
For help crossing off any items on your spring plumbing to-do list, call your Columbus plumbing experts, Atlas Butler. You can reach us at 1-800-FURNACE any time, any day.
For more spring plumbing tips check out this article – http://www.homeharmonizing.com/2014/05/10/15-easy-plumbing-tips-for-the-spring-season/
Over the years, many industries have developed higher standards of energy efficiency including the heating and cooling industry. Heating and cooling systems are more efficient than ever and new models are constantly coming out that consume less energy than older models. This progress greatly benefits consumers, as they now have the ability to choose highly efficient air conditioners or furnaces that keep energy costs down.
The important term for air conditioner efficiency is Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). The efficiency of an air conditioner is determined by its SEER rating with a higher rating meaning the unit is more efficient.
There are two main developments in the heating and cooling industry that allowed for more energy efficient air conditioners and higher SEER ratings:
- R410A refrigerant – The old refrigerant that was used for years is called R22, but it doesn’t allow for very high SEER ratings. In 1991, R410A was invented as a more energy efficient alternative to R22. As mandated by the US government, all AC systems manufactured after January 1, 2010 have to use R410A.
- Two-Stage air conditioners – Two-stage air conditioning units have two levels of operation: a high setting for really hot days and a low setting for mild days. 80% of the time, the low setting is sufficient for your cooling needs. This allows the air conditioner to run more efficiently and produce more comfortable temperatures.
When it’s time to replace your system, taking advantage of these advances in technology can have a significant impact in lowering your energy costs. Two-stage air conditioners with SEER ratings of 16 or 18 are recommended for most homes because they are extremely efficient while also providing the most comfort.
If you feel like you are paying too much on your energy bills, you might have an inefficient unit or it could be caused by a number of other problems. The only way to really find out is by scheduling an energy audit with a professional. Your technician will assess your energy consumption and determine where you can improve your efficiency. Schedule an energy audit today to make sure you are optimizing your energy efficiency.
For more information on air conditioner efficiency ratings, view these resources: