Archive for July, 2014

How a Thermostat Affects Your Air Conditioning

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

It doesn’t take special training to know your thermostat is the instrument that tells your air conditioner to turn on and off. But, with recent technological advancements, today’s thermostats do much more than start or stop the cycling of your AC. Comfort Central, Inc. specializes in the installment, repair and replacement of thermostats, and we’ve seen first-hand how a new thermostat can positively affect air conditioning systems in Black Mountain, NC.

How Can a New Thermostat Affect Your AC?

A new thermostat has several benefits:

  • Energy efficiency – the precision of digital thermostats and the ability to program them make today’s thermostats much more energy efficient than thermostats from just a decade ago. Digital thermostats are precise, as opposed to slide or dial thermostats, and when you use a digital thermostat that is also programmable, you gain tremendous control over how, when and to what temperature you cool your home. Many times, this equates to the need for less operation of your AC and more efficient cooling, which can reduce your energy usage.
  • Ease of use – digital thermostats are easy to read and operate, and don’t need to be calibrated like mercury thermostats do.
  • Convenience – programmable thermostats allow you to set the cooling for a 7 day program you can loop, freeing you from the constant need to adjust it.

Reasons to Consider Upgrading Your Thermostat

  • Age – if your thermostat is more than 10 years old, you could be missing out on significant energy efficiency savings.
  • Malfunction – is your thermostat constantly malfunctioning? This can cause your air conditioner to cycle on and off inconsistently, which contributes to wear and tear.
  • Constant need for repair – have you needed multiple repairs on your thermostat? At some point, your repair costs may be equal to the cost of a new thermostat.

Why Use a Professional?

Your thermostat is the control center for your air conditioner. If a new thermostat is installed improperly, it can wreak havoc on your air conditioning system in Black Mountain. If you are ready to upgrade your thermostat, call Comfort Central, Inc., today and schedule an appointment with one of our installation experts.

What Does Installation of a Geothermal System Involve?

Monday, July 21st, 2014

The idea of installing a geothermal system can sometimes intimidate homeowners, who envision a sprawling project that shreds their property for weeks at a time and which may end up not being worth all the effort. Geothermal installation ­is a large task—but if you have quality professionals performing the job, you’ll find that the work moves faster and with less disruption than you might think. And once it is all in place, we beieve you’ll find the effort was worthwhile: geothermal heating and cooling is more efficient and cost-effective, not to mention long-lived, than other home comfort systems. The period of installation is only a blip compared to the many years of excellent and inexpensive comfort the geothermal system will provide.

Comfort Central, Inc. is here to answer your questions about installing geothermal systems in Arden, NC. We offer full services for geothermal heating and cooling, from installation to repairs and regular maintenance. Contact us today to learn more about how you can put the energy of the earth to work for your home.

What Happens During Geothermal Installation

The first part of installing a geothermal heat pump for a home is for the installers to look over the house and property and determine the amount of underground loops necessary and the best way to configure them so they will fit the available space. (There are two standard loop configurations, vertical and horizontal.)

The actual installation will start with putting in place the interior heat pump elements inside your house. This is no more difficult than any heat pump installation, and it should hook up to your existing ducts without difficulty.

After that the installers will begin to dig the trenches outside your home for the loops. As this goes on, the loop configurations will be designed along wooden frames and linked together. When the trenches are finished, the loops will go down along the trenches floors and fit down flat and snugly. The ends of the loops attach to an outdoor manifold that leads to the indoor components. The technicians place water into the system (or attach it to the municipal water supply if it is an open-loop geothermal system) and check to see there are no leaks. They then fill in the trenches and re-landscape them.

With the right installation company handling this work, it should go fast and provide only a short period with open trenches on your property. Remember, those buried loops should last for 50 years or more!

At Comfort Central, Inc., we recommend that homeowners look into the possibilities of geothermal installation as an alternative to older heating and cooling systems. If your home is in an ideal location for geothermal systems in Arden, NC, then choosing to install one may be one of the smartest decisions you ever make for long-term savings and comfort.

How to Prepare for a Commercial HVAC Installation

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Whether you are replacing an older HVAC system for your company’s building or you have moved into a new building and need to have the first HVAC system put in, you will require the work of skilled, professional installers with commercial experience to handle the job.

Make your first call to Comfort Central, Inc. when you need installation for commercial HVAC in Hendersonville, NC. We offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee and will do everything we can to see that you are happy with our work to cool and heat your workspace. We will also handle your maintenance needs to keep the heating and cooling system working all through the year.

Preparations for Commercial HVAC Installation

  • Bring in the right contractors: Commercial heating and cooling has a number of significant differences from residential work, so make sure that that technicians you hire for your commercial HVAC installation have the proper training to make sure the work goes smoothly and your new system will operate as it should.
  • Sizing: Commercial HVAC systems are complicated when it comes to finding the proper size to keep a space comfortable without wasting energy. Because commercial systems are usually modular, it is easy to add on extra heating/cooling capacity to match with a space. But that also means it is easy to install a unit that is too powerful, and that will result in a system that short-cycles, turning on and off rapidly and draining energy unnecessarily. Before installation, make sure you have worked with the technicians to determine the correct sized HVAC unit to provide ideal comfort without energy drain.
  • Scheduling: Your installer will be able to give you an estimate on how long the installation will take and how much work will need to be done inside the building. (Most commercial HVAC systems are rooftop package units, and installation will involve minimal disruption in work area.) Arrange for an installation time that will work best for both the installers and for your work place. Since you will not be able to start work until the HVAC system is in place (especially during the summer), make sure you work out the scheduling early so you will have the system up and running as soon as possible.

We know that your business is important to you, and we will do our upmost to see that it receives the best installation for its heating and cooling needs. You can depend on our experienced technicians and their work with commercial HVAC in Hendersonville, NC when you need new installation for your workplace. Call on Comfort Central, Inc. today to schedule your installation.

What’s Involved in an Energy Audit?

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Imagine your home as a energy system, which generates electricity and heat, and also gains and loses it from the outside. Through the process of a professionally conducted energy audit, you can find out how efficiently your home uses energy and how you to increase that efficiency.

An energy audit is a complex process that analyzes every aspect of your home, from air sealing and insulation to the heat created from home appliances to your HVAC system. Trained technicians use the information gleaned from inspections, high tech equipment, and asking you detailed questions about your energy use to pinpoint where a home can improve its overall efficiency.

Call Comfort Central, Inc. to schedule an energy audit in Arden, NC today. Our aim on every audit is to help you toward savings and a more comfortable home environment.

What Occurs During an Energy Audit?

The steps in an audit will vary from home to home. The early questions the auditors will ask a homeowner will help guide the process so they know what to target. There are a number of standard procedures for most audits, however.

The blower door test is key to finding where a home loses and gains heat through air leaks. A blower door is a device that seals onto the front door of a home and uses fans to draw air from inside the home to alter the pressure. Air then rushes in through any leaky spots in the home, and the auditors can use smoke pencils to determine where the house has the biggest issues with heat loss and gain.

The auditors will then use thermographic inspection to measure the surface temperature of a home; this will catch other areas of thermal loss not connected to escaping air.

The auditor will then do more point-specific inspections on the ventilation system and the insulation. The examination will look for breaks and leaks along the vents, as well as buildup of contamination and dirt and other obstructions that will cause energy waste. They will evaluate the insulation levels and the condition of the insulation.

The HVAC system will receive special attention, since a large amount of energy in a home goes to running heating and cooling; if these systems are wasting energy, they will need repairs or replacement.

The power used to run the lights of a home account for 10% of the electrical bills, so an audit will also examine places where a house could lower costs through better and more efficient lighting. The auditors will also examine the other major appliances to see how they could improve energy use.

If you do a basic on-line search, you will find instructions for how to perform a “do-it-yourself audit.” But these are insufficient, and you don’t need to take our word for it: the U.S. Department of Energy strongly recommends that you call professionals with the right equipment to do a complete job.

When you contact Comfort Central, Inc. to schedule and energy audit in Arden, NC, you’ll receive a comprehensive examination to cover heating and cooling, air filtration/distribution, and the home heat envelope. When we are finished, you’ll have the best idea what steps to take to make your home a model of energy efficiency.

The Famous Painting of the Declaration of Independence Isn’t What You Think It Is

Friday, July 4th, 2014

If you grew up in the United States, you probably first saw John Trumbull’s painting of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence in an elementary schoolbook. This oil-on-canvas 12’ x 18’ painting hangs in the rotunda of the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. It is one of the most famous symbols of freedom in the country and almost every citizen can conjure it from memory.

Except… the painting isn’t of the singing of the Declaration of Independence. The actual title of the work is Declaration of Independence, and although it does portray an important moment in the history of the document that announced the Thirteen Colonies’ decision to break away from British rule, the event in the painting occurred on June 28, 1776, not July 4, 1776.

John Trumbull, a Connecticut native who fought in the Revolutionary War and whose father was the state governor, was commissioned to create the painting in 1817. He did painstaking research on the figures in the picture and also visited Independence Hall to see the actual chamber where the Second Continental Congress met. Trumbull only included 42 of the original 56 signers, because he could not find adequate likenesses for 14 or them, and added a few figures who were not present (most of whom declined to sign the actual document). In fact, the men depicted in the painting had never been present in the same room at one time.

So if the painting does not portray the signing of the Declaration of Independence, what is happening in the image? The Trumbull’s scene depicts the presentation of the draft of the declaration to the Continental Congress for editing and approval. The five-man drafting committee (John Adams, Roger Sherman, Robert R. Livingston, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin) is handing over their finished work, which congress would then edit carefully over the next few days before voting on it and signing it on the day that we now celebrate as the start of the United States of America.

One last, odd, fact: two of the five-man drafting committee, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both died on July 4th—although many years later.

Our family at Comfort Central, Inc. hopes that your Fourth of July (or Twenty-Eighth of June if you decided to start celebrating early) is a memorable and happy one.