Heated flooring

When I was younger I loved staying at my friends house.  To be completely honest, I would have moved in with them if I could have.  I loved my family and that part would be hard, but, my friends house had every modern thing you could think of. My mom and dad used to get mad at me when I asked why we didn’t have the same stuff in our house.  Looking back, my parents did the best they could and I can understand why they got mad. There was one thing that they did look into when I told them about it. My friend’s family put in flooring and it was great!.  We could walk around their house, barefooted, even in the middle of winter. When I overheard them saying how much money they were saving with this new kind of heat I told my parents about it. It seems that the radiant flooring is much more efficient than the forced air that we had.  Because it works with a series of heated tubing that runs under the floors it eliminates the cold drafts too. The heat rises evenly throughout the space and doesn’t create the dust either. My parents saved for a couple of years to afford the installation but once it was put in they were very happy. It also eliminated the need for filter changes as the new system runs off of a boiler.  The savings were significant and my parents never regretted the expense of the original installation. I still liked hanging at my friends house more, but, at least something good had come from my wanting everything he had.

all begins here

worst job ever

Okay, when I made the choice to drop out of school, I knew that I would have to work like crazy all of my life. I would only be able to get minimum wage jobs and have to work long hours to make ends meet.  That being said, I still feel I have one of the worst jobs on the planet. I really don’t mind manual labor but the smell in the place is horrible. I got my job about five years ago and it wasn’t too bad. Working in a fish cannery is hard work and messy too, but the pay was better and at least they offered some benefits.  Last year, however, it took a turn for the worse when the HVAC system started acting up. The heat works great but the exhaust and ventilation don’t. These are important features when you work in a place with fish all the time. The smell is better in the summer because we can open the windows, but, when you are stuck inside with the heat running it is nauseating. The boss says that market prices are down so much that they can’t afford to fix the system properly and we just have to deal with it. There is no contamination that affects the fish so we all just have to deal with the smell. He says that if it bothers us too much we can simply find a new place to work. I can’t afford to do that either.  Sometimes I regret leaving school when I did, but I felt just as trapped there as I do now in the awful job.

HVAC dealership

Dryer vent is clogged upon moving into rental

I was immeasurably lucky when I found my current house on the rental market last year.  Prices are going up every year and the availability dwindles constantly too, in part from the growing number of retirees that are moving to my city and the surrounding area from up north where it’s colder in the winters.  Whatever the reason is, many of us are still faced with the struggles of finding suitable living accommodations at prices that we can reasonably afford. I found a two bedroom two bathroom house that had been built three years prior and was still in really good shape, at least from how things appeared upon first glance.  I feared plumbing problems but I haven’t faced any slow draining sinks or water backup problems since moving in. However, the dryer is taking considerably long periods of time to dry a minimally sized load. I read online that sometimes this is a result of clogged exhaust ventilation for the dryer, which is a single narrow metal duct that extends upward from the base of my floor into the wall and above, through the attic, and finally out a port on the roof.  I got a 10 foot hand snake for the vent, and although it pulled out heaping piles of clothes lint and dust, I just could get above the 10 foot mark and knew there had to be more clogged up closer to the roof. Thankfully, my contracted HVAC technician handles cleaning dryer vents as well as heating and cooling ducts. They used a special spiralling snake device that attaches to a power drill and spins to break away lint buildup in the vent, and then at the base of it all they had a shop vacuum turned on and ready to sweep up any stray particulate falling out of the vent as the drill worked its magic.  The change in efficiency on my dryer is night and day after having my local HVAC supplier clean out the air exhaust vent.

air conditioner

County court upgrades HVAC system after series of complaints

Yesterday’s news headlines were primed for the scrap book, with one reading “County Court under heat as judges faints in deposition hearing.”  Without more context you might just assume that the judge in question has a medical condition, but that’s not the case. This particular court building has had complaints levied against it for years over the poor state of its HVAC system.  Too many times have poor soul’s been sent to the bench with beads of sweat dripping from their faces, making them look as guilty as can be despite the fact that literally every other person in that courtroom at the same time are all dripping in sweat too.  Granted, it’s hard to say a plaintiff is getting an unfair disadvantage when the entire jury looks and feels as hot and and uncomfortable as they do. For this reason, the cheap county commissioners put little thought into investing in a new heating and cooling system for the court house, particularly because of the sheer size of the building and its age.  But after a judge fainted yesterday and made headlines across the state, the county commissioners are working hard to clean up the PR mess from the debacle and put out a statement of intent as soon as possible regarding the fix of that court house’s HVAC system. It took a matter of hours for the paperwork to hit the public after the state attorney general made a quick phone call to quell the mess.  Now that our county is under hot water from the state, I’m hoping they’ll get equal scrutiny over their budgetary allocations over our local roads. Where is our tax money going if not to fix our failing infrastructure?

HVAC update

It was unexpectedly rough out there

Not so long ago, I was out on a boat with some buddies out on the ocean. We were just out there having a good time fishing and drinking mojitos. Well, unexpectedly the weather took a turn for the worse. The heavy clouds were coming in and the winds. It was pretty scary out there and it was becoming cold and wet. I was thankful that we had a nice heating system in the cabin of the boat. We realized that there was a weather warning and we had to get out of there. Well, it became so bad that we had a hard time making our way back to dock the boat. Everyone was wearing a life vest in case we ended up sinking or something horrible like that. There was a life raft and everything, but I was hoping it wouldn’t come to that. I was just praying that we would be okay and I was right next to the air vent absorbing all the heating that I could. If I were going to die out here with my buddies, at least I wanted to be nice and warm with a great climate control system before I was plunged into the depths of the ocean. Well, before I knew it, the captain of the boat was able to dock us and tie the boat down and we were able to get back onto land safely. Even though it was a bit rough out there, I was so thankful we didn’t end up on a life raft in the midst of the ocean. I couldn’t wait to get back to my house and crank up my heating system and get some rest.

heater plan

A car is a car!

I have had this clunker for a vehicle for quite some time now. Recently my brother was saying that his son could use a car for school, and I asked him if he would want to take my clunker vehicle. He asked me if the climate control system even worked in the car. I said for the warm season, you had to roll the windows down, and the heating system worked just fine. I said that the A/C in the car could probably be fixed easily. I have heard that you can get a refrigerant refilling kit and you can recharge the A/C compressor. He said that sounded like a good idea. When he asked me how much I wanted for the car, I told him to just take it. I was about to buy another car and that old car wasn’t worth anymore than the price to junk it. I figured it would be suitable for a first car for my nephew though. He took the car gratefully and did as I said. He had the refrigerant charged and the A/C he said was working surprisingly well after that. I kind of wish I did that before so I didn’t have to be so overheated in the warm season, but oh well. It’s just something that I never got around to doing, but at least the heating system worked like a champ when I was driving that old clunker. I was happy that I could help out my nephew by giving him my old clunker. He probably wouldn’t care about the state of the car since a car is a car at that age!

air conditioner plan

Ultimate energy savings and comfort

I must say, I really adore the HVAC system we had installed in our household recently. I was actually hesitant initially about making such an investment for our household until the HVAC technician was telling me about the incredible energy saving potential. We have a rather fancy HVAC system that is super energy efficient. The system is equipped with rapid heating and cooling. This is wonderful to have because it doesn’t take very long to heat or cool your household to your desired temperature. If we are outside in the summer months, we can keep the system set at minimal settings so we aren’t wasting a ton of energy. With the smart thermostat we have equipped with this system, we can have the cooling turn on minutes before we head back inside the household and it will be perfectly cool! We can even have the system do all of this automatically without having to adjust anything because the smart thermostat recognizes when people are inside or out of the household. Of course, I love having the power to control the thermostat settings myself, so that’s just my personal preference to control everything on my own. I remember in the past, I would get mad if I forgot to turn down the HVAC system when everybody left the house, but now I don’t have to worry about that any longer! I can easily just shut off the HVAC now from anywhere I happen to be! It’s also nice to set the thermostat to our desired settings minutes before we arrive home for ultimate energy savings and comfort!

smart thermostat

Refurbished

When I realized that my old HVAC system was basically on its last legs, I knew I needed a different HVAC system. I was definitely short of cash however, and figured I could probably get a used HVAC system installed into my household. I would do that at least until I could afford something new. I’ve never really been the type of guy to purchase things new anyway, I have never bought a new car, only used. When I was looking around for used HVAC systems on the internet, I found this well-priced refurbished HVAC. It was so cheap that it was too good to pass up. It said it was guaranteed to work for 2 years or I would get my money back. When the HVAC workers came in with the refurbished HVAC, they had it installed and took my old one away. The HVAC system was working fine for a few weeks and I felt like I got a fantastic deal. After those initial weeks, the system started experiencing some serious troubles. I came to realize that my old HVAC system actually worked better than this refurbished unit! I called the people who gave me the deal and they apologized. They said they would repair the unit or replace it if necessary. The guys that came in said that they discovered a crack in the heat exchanger and they had no choice but to replace the refurbished model. I was saying I thought it was guaranteed to work for 2 years. They apologized for the inconvenience and said that somebody clearly made a mistake. They switched out the unit with another refurbished HVAC unit. I just hoped that this one really would last for at least 2 years…

air conditioning

From broken pool to heated pool

My husband has this gift for finding the bright side of things; it’s one of the reasons I married him. While I tend to get overwhelmed and prepare for the worst possible outcome, he has a way of examining a situation and finding a solution that not only fixes the problem but improves things entirely. So when we found out the supposed “small problem” with the pool from the last owner was in fact a leaky drain line and a cracked hydrostatic, I nearly had a mental breakdown. This meant finding a pool repair company certified to use a jackhammer and who was able to handle a gunite pool, who would then need to dig up the pool and repour it. We were looking at thousands. My husband calmed me down and said that it was okay, he had some money set aside to have the pool worked on anyway. Apparently he had received a bonus from work which he was going to talk to me about using to heat the pool. Heating a pool is similar to heated floors, so you need to dig up around it to install the heating element along the walls of the pool. As we’re digging it up anyway, he thought it would be a great idea to do the heated pool at the same time. He gave me a huge hug and promised me it would work out in the end, and as per usual he was right. It took a few months to repair the pool and install the pool heating system, but this heated floor system was able to be hooked up to our central heater. Since our boiler does the work, it was more affordable than expected too!

clickable link

Turning the garage into the kids space


When my husband and I had our third kid, we knew something at the house had to change. There simply wasn’t enough room for the kids to play without getting into fights, or disrupting our own peace and quiet. I know that being a parent is a full time job, but that doesn’t mean my husband and I should be having to deal with obnoxious noise 24/7. Besides, the kids are old enough now that they do not constant supervision. In fact, they could do with some more space so our littlest one can sleep more soundly. In the end, we decided to finish the garage and turn it into the kids play room. The process of doing so was actually a lot easier than we thought it would be. We built a shed to store much of the things that went in the garage, added flooring and proper doors, then did the HVAC system. We had to choose between extending the heating and cooling system that works to keep the rest of the house comfortable, or buy a secondary HVAC unit just for this room. It ended up being both cheaper to install and more energy efficient in the long room to have a ductless mini split heating and cooling unit installed. This HVAC device was installed in one wall of the play run, and works to provide both heating and cooling without the need for any sort of fuel. Not only is this more energy efficient, but it’s also safer for the kids in this space since it creates no VOCs at all.

ductless mini split