Wedding vows and air conditioning

It seems like everyone wants to have an outdoor wedding these days.  The typical outdoor, barn style wedding decor is what everyone desires, not being in the usual church setting like it use to be.  Almost all of my friends that have been married recently are doing outdoor weddings and I love it because everyone gets to be outside and enjoy the fresh air! However, there has been one recurring issue for these weddings and that’s lack of air conditioning during those hot days.  The downside of being outside is you really just have to hope for a cooler day and see what happens. Your guests may be miserably hot outside or they may end up being perfectly fine, depending on the day and time that you decide for your vows. One wedding I went to recently was extremely hot, almost too hot to even be outside! Halfway through their wedding festivities they decided to move everyone inside where there was access to an air conditioner.  This was unfortunate for them but great for all of their guests, because everyone was started to leave because of the heat. Luckily, inside we turned on the air conditioning full blast and the whole space was cool in a matter of minutes! We also had fans running to circulate the air and at one point I actually felt a little cold. I’m not sure what we all would have done without the air conditioning that day. I probably would have had to leave early!

air conditioning

HVAC technician demanded an answer

I’m not sure what is going on these days, but it honestly seems as though customer service is a thing of the past. I have had plenty of bad experiences with the cashier at the grocery store being rude. I’ve also encountered a ton of professional salespeople who didn’t know how to interact in a friendly matter. However, this past week was a brand new experience for me as I tried to navigate the delicate situation of having my central heating system repaired. I had been getting through the winter as best I could. That meant using our indoor central heating on a very regular basis, and running the furnace on full blast for many days at a time. Unfortunately, all of this excess stress on my heating system soon resulted in a complete furnace breakdown. Apparently the last HVAC professional who came out to service our central heating did a poor job. It was less than two weeks after my last professional ventilation maintenance visit that my entire forced air furnace stopped giving off adequate levels of heat. I dealt with the chilly temperatures and humidity within my home for several days before calling out another HVAC technician. Upon arrival, I actually couldn’t believe the attitude of this heating and cooling professional. He immediately started taking jabs at the condition of my central heating system. He said my air filter was disgustingly dirty, the inner workings hadn’t been cleaned or repaired for years, and my air ducts were filthy. He actually told me at one point that I needed to commit to working with him right then, or he was going to leave. Considering he came from the same HVAC company as the person who supposedly serviced my whole heating system, I fired him on the spot.

Wish the porch was enclosed

There are a couple of important characteristics which I hope I can always have at home. When I’m out looking for a new place to rent, I always make sure to check out the amount of natural light I will receive, the volume of storage space contained in the place, and the ability to access a moderate balcony or porch area. I really love to sit outside during the early mornings and evenings. It’s such a treat to soak up the most gentle rays of sunshine, soak up a warm breeze, and breathe in the fresh air outside. The only thing is, I wish that I could have all of these comforts year round. I’m currently dreaming of an enclosed porch or balcony, just so that I could utilize the outdoor area year round, no matter the climate conditions. Enclosing such a space would protect me from wind and rain during any time of year. However, I would like to have glass surrounding the little seating area so that I could add in modern temperature control devices, first and foremost. I’m thinking I could put in a mini-split ductless system to supply the small area with plenty of temperature control. The units fit in almost any space, do not require any ductwork to be in place, and are highly efficient to operate. Best of all, the little ventilation systems actually work as both heaters and air conditioning units, so I wouldn’t have to buy separate units! I would have ideal comfort all year round in my little outdoor paradise, all without any major renovations or installation costs.

HVAC technician friendly and quick

Throughout the years, my husband, Rick, has always replaced our appliances whenever they showed a hint of a problem. While he did grow up with the mentality of fixing everything, he believed that he was above repairing things since he had lived a great life. I was completely opposed to this mentality since most things could have had a quick repair to restore the appliance to its original state regardless of a person’s wealth. Well unfortunately, Rick passed away last year, and our HVAC system was on the way out when he passed. It has been over a year since I needed to either replace or fix my HVAC system, and I chose to finally repair it. A week ago, I called a HVAC technician to come and inspect my HVAC system. I wasn’t expecting him to fix the HVAC system immediately, but that is what he did. The HVAC technician knew exactly what was wrong, and he got right to work fixing it when he arrived. His friendliness and quickness was completely unexpected since I am used to the stereotyped repairman. After the HVAC technician left, I noticed immediately that my HVAC system was working perfectly. There was no uneven temperature in my house, and the HVAC system was much less noisy. I wish Rick would have been around to see that the HVAC system only needed a repair and didn’t need to be replaced. Sadly, I was forced to make the decision by myself, but I was fortunate to have an excellent HVAC technician to make the repair.


Replacing HVAC system and installed temperature control

When my husband, Art, and I first bought our house, we never thought about living a comfortable life with all the fancy equipment we could have. We both simply needed to work and sleep to pay our bills. That’s exactly what we did for many years, but now we are retired, and we are trying to relax more. We have been updating our entire kitchen, and along with that we have updated our HVAC system. While it kept the house warm, our HVAC system caused us to have high heating bills, and we didn’t have the freedom to adjust our temperature to our preferences. Luckily, our local HVAC supplier suggested that we install some dampers for temperature control. Art and I accepted the idea, and the HVAC technician installed the dampers while the other was replacing our HVAC system. The dampers allow us to fine tune each room’s temperature to what we really want. It’s no longer one single temperature throughout the entire house since the dampers allow each room to have their own temperature. This is great since I like my rooms to be slightly cold while Art needs the heat so he doesn’t shiver. Our new updated HVAC system is also great since we never knew how much difference a new HVAC system would be. Our heating bills are significantly cheaper, and our house gets up to temperature quicker than our old HVAC system. Art and I are so glad that we replaced our old HVAC system and also installed temperature control so we can finally relax at a comfortable temperature.

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Using an antique wood-burning stove for heat

Today, I’m going to give you a history lesson. Over 460 years ago, the first patent for a wood burning stove was submitted in Strasbourg. Way earlier than that, in the year 220 A.D, China began using cast-iron stoves. And dating all the way back to 2000 B.C, the Middle East saw the use of Kilns. How incredible is that? I’m not just bringing this up for trivia, though. I want to present a point: wood-burning stoves are the traditional method to heat your home. Now I understand that the world of heating, ventilation and air conditioning has rapidly changed, but there’s something simply irreplaceable about an old-fashioned wood-burning stove. Maybe it’s the aesthetic appeal? Maybe it’s the relaxing act of chopping wood and relaxing by the fire, enjoying the fruits of your labor. For me, I just don’t see any other means of heating my home as therapeutic as this. I live in a cabin on the edge of my town in rural farmlands, so I could see why I can get away with this mentality, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. When I get home from working in the city, nothing relaxes me like chopping some wood and resting by the fire. Keep in mind though, I’m no woodsman – I have wifi in my house and a ton of fancy tech gadgets. I just can’t stress enough how much I enjoy my wood-burning stove, especially when it’s cold outside. Other people lose power in their homes and are subject to the harsh elements, but me? I just throw some wood on the fire!

heating unit

Using combined heat and power to reduce waste at home

One of my best traits is my ability to be thrifty – within reason, of course. I won’t be cheap about the things that really matter, like properly feeding and clothing myself and my family. My sense for thrift also feeds into this constant desire to find the more efficient, effective way to do anything and improve that part of my life. I had a real shining moment the other week, when it dawned on me that we waste a ton of power trying to heat our home. The house we live in is made of brick and stone, making it terribly insulated and easily frigid! It can be a real bear in the Winter. I decided to do some research and see if there was anything I could do to improve the situation, and that’s when I stumbled on the premise of CHP, or combined heat and power. In a nutshell, the heat given off by power-producers like generators is recycled and used to heat a house. Think about when you stand behind a car idling in a parking lot on a cold winter’s night. Most of you is shivering, except for that small part of your leg being brushed with the warm exhaust from the car. It’s a similar concept to that, but obviously it is terribly dangerous to inhale the exhaust fumes from a car or other motorized equipment. CHP is a premise still being studied for that reason, but I can tell you that I’d love to implement it at my home in some way! I just have to figure out how.

heater system

Winter cooking

My mother keeps the temperature of our house set so high. It’s about eighty degrees in here right now. I keep telling her this isn’t a good idea, because when we go outside our bodies are going to be shocked by the cold. She is just really intolerant to cold temperatures, so she ignores my suggestions. I don’t have a problem with the cold, and when I lived by myself, I would always keep my thermostat set around sixty five. Last night I was cooking my dinner, and while I was standing over the stove I was sweating bullets. It was already so hot in the house, then on top of that, the additional heat from the stove and oven made the temperature unbearable. By the time I finished cooking, I didn’t even feel hungry anymore. I was so thirsty from being so hot and sweaty, and my stomach actually started to hurt. After that, I sat my mother down. I told her that if she wanted me to continue living there, she was going to have to adjust the heating system. I couldn’t stand having the heat turned up that high anymore. I also mentioned that I was happy to get my own place. That way we could both have our houses at the temperature we like without it inconveniencing the other person. After some thought, my mother decided she’d try having the thermostat at a lower temperature. It wasn’t quite as low as I would have set it to, but it was at least under seventy five degrees. That was a big improvement.  

space heater

Choosing the Right System

I was forced to do a lot of research on HVAC systems when I began building my dream home. I waited so long to be able to build my own home from the ground up, that I wanted to make sure from the doorknobs to the HVAC throughout the house, that everything was exactly what I wanted. When I began looking into HVAC systems, I was first overwhelmed by the choices… Did I want a single or multi-stage system? Did I want or need air conditioning and heating? What about a zone system? What type of thermostat? The options just seemed endless, and I had to re-read several articles multiple times to retain any information. There were some stand-outs for me once I was able to focus. I had already thought a lot about doing stained concrete flooring on the lower floor of the house. I liked the durability of it since I had to consider my three dogs. One heating option that caught my eye was the radiant flooring. The articles I read said that they work best when installed with concrete flooring since the concrete releases the heat slowly over time. It would reduce the amount of heating vents I would need in the house which was a plus, and it was also more cost effective in the long run. The radiant floors heat the house evenly and utilizing less energy than traditional HVAC units like forced air furnaces or boiler systems. I decided to do the radiant heating with the concrete floors in my downstairs bathroom and kitchen. I also invested in a typical HVAC system to serve the rest of the lower floor and the upstairs. I chose a multi-stage system which is more energy efficient. The two systems combined keep the house plenty warm in the winter.


Price with the HVAC

If you have boys, then you know the 1s this week seems to never be content. As time has progressed, gentlemen have wanted more than they have ever wanted before. My gentlemen for one, like making me jump through hoops in addition to loops just to get them to stop begging me to get in addition to do things for them. These rowdy teenagers have made me question over in addition to over who the real parents are in the household. From getaways, to extra allowance, to parties, they literally have gotten any in addition to everything that they could ever want, however unfortunately for me, my spouse is to blame. Two boys are a lot of task for me, however with my spouse regularly laying on their side, it has made their life easy! Both of us have all heard the “Mommy’s boy” however have you ever heard of two of them? Anything that they ask, they get from him, which means us. This is especially true when it comes to our Heating and Air Conditioning unit, but when I am chilly my butt, my spouse will somehow approve of the boys turning on the cool air when it’s already 40 degrees indoors! Maybe it’s the whimpers in addition to tears, that gets him, however whatever it is,this absolutely irks me. Both of us have had talks about the treatment of our Heating and Air Conditioning in addition to them being spoiled, all of which seems to have went in one ear in addition to out of the other.  Every week when all of us get our Heating and Air Conditioning bills, I Will direct them right over to my spouse to use his “play” money to pay for it sense he is regularly co-signing everything they want.

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