Ambient Comfort LLC Blog

The benefits of installing a heat pump in your home

May 24th, 2017

The benefits of installing a heat pump in your home

Like much of the country, southern New Jersey experiences seasonal temperature changes that make home heating an unquestionable necessity and air conditioning something just short of that – an amenity that you could live without if you had to (after all, our great-grandparents did), but that most people consider to be a “must-have” for modern, comfortable living. In most homes, this means two systems: a furnace or boiler for heat, and A/C for cooling. With a heat pump, however, it is possible to use a single system to keep your home comfortable year-round.

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Getting The Most from Your Air Conditioner

May 10th, 2017

Getting The Most from Your Air Conditioner

Controlling the thermostat in extreme heat can be a lively topic of family debate. But changing the dial constantly can wreak havoc on your home cooling system and lead to increased utility bills.

Industry experts tend to agree that consistency pays off in the short and long runs. A recommended stable setting of 78 degrees F is the standard recommended thermostat setting for summer cooling. Being consistent with cooling use also keeps the indoor humidity level low, leading to increased comfort. The less humidity in your indoor air, the easier it is on your air conditioner, which has to work harder to remove indoor moisture levels.

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A New Thermostat Might Make Your Home More Comfortable

April 17th, 2017

A New Thermostat Might Make Your Home More Comfortable

Thermostats function by detecting the air temperature inside your home and, when they reach a pre-set upper or lower limit, turning the heating or cooling system on or off until the air reaches the desired temperature. Home climate control thermostats are binary: they just turn the system on or off, and it’s how often they do it that regulates the temperature in the home.

Whether it’s the air conditioning unit cooling the home or the furnace heating it, the detection equipment must be accurate for the system to work properly. If you find that you can never get the temperature right inside your home no matter how you set it, the thermostat itself might be the issue.

Old-Fashioned Thermostats

The internal workings of most older thermostats rely on a bi-metallic strip, composed of two strips of different metals bonded to each other. Different metals expand at different rates in response to heat, so as the temperature changes, the bimetallic strip bends one way or the other. When it reaches a certain position, which you set by adjusting the thermostat, it closes or opens an electrical circuit, turning the heating or cooling system on or off.

Instead of the bimetallic strip, a few older thermostats rely on a gas-filled bellows that expands or contracts in response to changes in temperature, but the basic principle is the same: something with physical properties changes size in response to temperature changes, and this opens or closes a switch.

These “physical-change” systems are delicate and not as accurate as modern, electronic thermostats. Electronic thermostats generally retain their accuracy as long as they have a constant supply of voltage. The most common cause of an inaccurate performance in an electronic thermostat is a low or dead battery – an easy problem for any homeowner to resolve.

Modern Thermostats

Most electronic thermostats do a lot more than turn on and off in response to changes in air temperature. The majority of them are programmable, allowing you to set different temperatures for different times of the day – for example, during the heating season, to begin warming up a half hour before you get out of bed in the morning and a half hour before you get home from work in the evening, and allowing the home to cool down when you’re tucked into bed or at the office. Slightly more sophisticated programmable thermostats can have different programs set for different days of the week, to accommodate different schedules on weekends, for example.

The newest advance in thermostat technology involves IP (internet protocol) control. Of course these can be programmed for a daily or weekly schedule, but you can also change the settings at any time from your computer or smartphone. So, for example, if you’ll be late coming home from work, you can save energy by delaying the warm-up program for a couple hours. Or if you’re snuggled up with a book and feeling colder than usual, you can raise the temperature a few degrees via your phone or tablet without leaving the couch.

If that sounds like a nice way to stay comfortable and save on energy costs, contact Ambient Comfort in Vineland, NJ, for a thermostat upgrade. Ambient Comfort provides complete heating, ventilating and air conditioning sales and service to homes and businesses throughout Gloucester County and southern New Jersey. Want to learn more? Send us a message online or call us at 856-213-6586.

 

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Have Allergies? Air Filters Are They Difference

April 3rd, 2017

Have Allergies? Air Filters Are They Difference

In any home with central air conditioning and/or a forced hot air heating system, the air is recycled several times an hour. Air is pulled into the HVAC unit through an air filter before it is cooled or heated, then pushed back into the home through the ducts.

The filter plays in important role, removing dust, allergens and other pollutants from the air before it goes back into the home’s living spaces. If filtration isn’t effective, allergies, asthma and other health problems may be aggravated. A filter that is dirty and clogged with dust also reduces airflow, forcing the system to work harder and increasing energy consumption.

Quality air filtration starts with a quality air filter. Air filters are manufactured for different levels of efficiency, and are rated according to their minimum efficiency reporting value, a standard established by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers and known more widely by its initials, the MERV rating. The higher the MERV value, the better the air filter is at catching dust, pet hair and dander, allergens, mold spores, smoke and odors.

MERV Rating System

The MERV scale ranges from 1 to 20, with 20 representing the most thorough level of filtration. Hospitals and some industrial users that require ultra-clean air use filters with MERV values between 14 and 20. Filters for homes usually range from 1 to 14. Let’s look at the ratings for home systems in more detail, using information from the US Environmental Protection Agency.

MERV Rating 1-4

These are fiberglass filters or washable filters made from aluminum mesh. They are inexpensive but are only effective at trapping pet hair and larger particles of dust. Prices are as low as $3 each.

MERV Rating 5-8

These filter out finer particles of dust, most allergens, and mold spores. Prices range (roughly) from $4 to $10.

MERV Rating 9-12

These are the best filters you can get for your home. They trap all of the above mentioned contaminants plus the smallest dust and allergen particles, bacteria, viruses, and even most odors. Prices range from about $6 to $20 per filter.

Changing Your Filter

The best filter can’t do its job if it’s clogged. Most professionals say to change your filter once a month, but that’s a rough rule of thumb. You may need to change it more often if:

  • you use your HVAC system constantly
  • you live in a dusty environment
  • you have numerous shedding pets
  • a member of the household is particularly sensitive to certain allergens or airborne pollutants.

In such situations, it may be advisable to check or replace the filter as often as once a week.

Choose the Best

Ambient Comfort serves all of Gloucester County, New Jersey, with heating, ventilating and air conditioning sales and service. We will be glad to examine your A/C system and its filter and offer advice about improving the air quality in your home. Contact us.

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Time to Upgrade your Home Heating System?

March 31st, 2017

Time to Upgrade your Home Heating System?

How do you know when you need a new furnace or heat pump? What are the signs of a failing heating system? These are common questions about heating systems, and many of them apply to air conditioning too.

We totally agree with the “repair – don’t replace” philosophy. In most instances, it’s more cost-effective and it’s better for the environment. But like cars, HVAC systems eventually reach a stage where they become unreliable, and where the cost of repeated repairs may begin to overtake the cost of a new system.

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Don’t Overlook Your HVAC System This Spring

March 31st, 2017

Don’t Overlook Your HVAC System This Spring

The long, cold days of winter are coming to a close, which means that it is time to start tackling that long list of spring cleaning and home improvement projects. HVAC (heating ventilating air conditioning) cleaning and maintenance should be at the top of your list.

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Check Out Our Blog for the Latest in HVAC Technology

April 27th, 2016

Be sure to bookmark the Ambient Comfort LLC blog for updates on the latest advances in HVAC technology.

We’ll feature money saving promotions here as well.

Call Ambient Comfort LLC for all your Heating, Air Conditioning, Indoor Air Quality, and Commercial HVAC needs.

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Welcome to Our New Website

April 27th, 2016

iMarket Solutions has launched Ambient Comfort LLC’s new custom website. To learn more about how iMarket Solutions can expand your presence on the web visit: www.imarketsolutions.com

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