Types of Heating Systems

Types of Heating Systems A variety of technologies are available for heating your house. In addition to heat pumps, which are discussed separately, many homes use the following approaches: Furnaces and Boilers By far the most common way to heat a home. Wood and Pellet-Fuel Heating Provides a way to heat your home using biomass… Read More »

Sizing and Installation

RIGHT-SIZED AIR CONDITIONERS: MECHANICAL EQUIPMENT IMPROVEMENTS The ENERGY STAR Program promotes right-sized air conditioners where heating and cooling contractors carefully match system capacity to home cooling needs. Homes that include features such as increased insulation, air sealing, high-performance windows, and improved duct systems can dramatically reduce cooling loads. As a result, smaller, less costly air… Read More »

Selecting an HVAC Contractor

10 Tips for Hiring a Heating and Cooling Contractor Study up — Find out about license and insurance requirements for contractors in your state. And before you call a contractor, know the model of your current system and its maintenance history. Also make note of any uncomfortable rooms. This will help potential contractors better understand… Read More »

Sizing Heating and Cooling Systems

Older space conditioning systems (more than 10 years old) are often unreliable and much less efficient than a modern system. When it’s time for a new replacement, choosing one of the correct size (heating and/or cooling output) is critical to getting the best efficiency, comfort, and lowest maintenance and operating costs over the life of… Read More »

Asthma Causes & Triggers

Clearing Your Home of Asthma Triggers Asthma is a serious lung disease. During an asthma attack, the airways get narrow, making it difficult to breathe. Symptoms of asthma include wheezing, shortness of breath, and coughing. Asthma can even cause death. If you have asthma or a child with asthma, you are not alone. About 17… Read More »

Controlling Indoor Air Pollution

The three most common approaches to reducing indoor air pollution, in order of effectiveness, are: Source Control: Eliminate or control the sources of pollution; Ventilation: Dilute and exhaust pollutants through outdoor air ventilation, and Air Cleaning: Remove pollutants through proven air cleaning methods. Of the three, the first approach — source control — is the most effective. This involves minimizing… Read More »

Biological Pollutants in Your Home

Outdoor air pollution in cities is a major health problem. Much effort and money continues to be spent cleaning up pollution in the outdoor air. But air pollution can be a problem where you least expect it, in the place you may have thought was safest — your home. Many ordinary activities such as cooking,… Read More »

Operating and Maintaining Your Heat Pump

Proper operation of your heat pump will save energy. Do not set back the heat pump’s thermostat if it causes the backup heating to come on; backup heating systems are usually more expensive to operate. Continuous indoor fan operation can degrade heat pump performance unless a high-efficiency, variable-speed fan motor is used. Operate the system… Read More »

Dual Fuel Heat Pumps

Dual Fuel A dual-fuel heat pump is an electric air-source heat pump that uses an alternative natural fuel source like natural gas, LPG or oil, as an auxiliary or backup heat instead of electric resistance coils. It can be accomplished within a single integrated unit, or pieced together by combining a standard air-source heat pump… Read More »

Air-Source Heat Pumps

Electric air-source heat pumps, often used in moderate climates, use the difference between outdoor air temperatures and indoor air temperatures to cool and heat your home. Earning the ENERGY STAR means products meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. ENERGY STAR qualified heat pumps have… Read More »