Monthly Archives: December 2020

Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Air Conditioning Repair?

Many people with their own homes worry about air conditioning repair costs, and wonder if their homeowner’s insurance covers this area. The simple answer is yes and no. If you have a natural disaster, fire, or some other catastrophe, and your air conditioner gets destroyed or damaged along with your home, then you are covered by your insurance. However, in many cases where it is just the air conditioner that is broken, or has a problem, then your homeowner’s insurance does not cover the repair costs. There are other ways to cover these costs.

When it comes to air conditioning repair, there is another kind of insurance that homeowners can buy. It is called major appliance insurance. This insurance has been advertised in the media and can be obtained online, or you can also ask your current insurance agent about it. What appliance insurance does is cover all of your major home appliances from your refrigerator, to your air conditioner, and most large appliances in between. How it works is if you have any kind of problem with your air conditioning unit, no matter what time of the day or night, you call the insurance hot line, let them know the nature of the problem, and they call a technician to come and fix it for you. This can come in handy in the middle of the summer, when you unit breaks down.

How much you will actually pay for air conditioning repair when it comes to appliance insurance depends on the coverage, and the deductible. If you want, you can pay a higher premium with no deductible, and if you need someone to come out and fix it, you will have no out of pocket expenses. The higher the deductible, the more you will have to pay for repairs, it’s just that simple

Another way to cut down on these costs is getting an extended warranty on your unit when you purchase it. While many air conditioners come with at least a two year warranty, in many cases you have the option of an extended warranty, which can extend it up to twice as long as the regular warranty will. Now this may cost extra, in some cases up to $100, but considering how much repair costs are, this is a small price to pay for added peace of mind.

So as you can see, there are ways to get around your homeowner’s insurance when it comes to air conditioning repair costs. In many cases, the newer the unit, the more efficient it is, the easier and cheaper the coverage will be, and the length of the warranty will be longer. The older the unit, the harder it is to find parts for, and it may take longer for the technician to find the problem. A new more efficient unit will not only cut down on your repair costs, but also save you money because it will work better, and use less energy.

5 Simple Energy Conservation Ideas For Your Home

While most potential home buyers, consider their monthly mortgage payment (including principal, interest, and escrow/ taxes), many, fail to adequately consider other monthly expenses, associated with home ownership. Perhaps the most significant one, is the cost of energy – related activities, including electric, and heart. The purpose of this article is not to examine the many alternative heating alternatives, including solar, geo – thermal, etc, but rather, to review some simple steps, one can somewhat easily take, to make their home more energy – efficient, and friendly. Let’s look at 5 simple, basic, energy conservation ideas/ steps.

1. Windows and doors: What is the Energy Efficiency Ratio of your entry doors? What material are they made of? How are they hung? How much air is seeping out, through the spaces created, because of their alignment? Simply, assuring your door has a bottom sweep, and the spaces around the top, and sides, is reduced/ eliminated, will prevent heat escaping in the winter, and air conditioning, escaping during the summer. What type of blinds, or curtains are you using, and are you using them, to let sun in, when it is cold out, while reducing the entry of the heat of the sun, when it is hot? When was the last time you checked your windows, in terms of air – tightness, energy rating, and tinting (if your local climate indicates doing so)?

2. Insulation: Every form of insulation comes with some R rating. This number indicates the amount of insulation, but are you certain, all exterior walls and ceilings are properly insulated? Doing so, might potentially save a considerable amount of unnecessary energy costs.

3. Energy efficient appliances: Certain home appliances, especially refrigerators, freezers, and air conditioners, have become far more energy – efficient, in recent years. How old are yours? Look at the rating, and it will indicate how much energy a particular appliance might be using. When I recently replaced my refrigerator, the new one was far more efficient (therefore, cost less to run), than my 15 – year old model. Similarly, today’s oil and gas burners and boilers are far more efficient, than they have ever been!

4. Water and toilet: Are there any dripping faucets or toilets that continue to run – on? Eliminate the drips, change faucet heads (especially in the shower), and check the efficiency of your toilets.

5. Lights/ fixtures: Begin by making the effort to turn lights off, when you leave the room! What type of light bulb are you using? Many bulbs today are four, or more times, more efficient (use less energy/ wattage), than older ones. Do a lights and fixtures – review on a regular basis!

These 5 ideas may seem basic and obvious, but you’d be amazed how few people consider these. Unless you like wasting energy, and spending more than you need to, using these simple, conservation methods, will save money, and reduce energy waste.

What to Inspect Before Buying an Older House

Homes have changed over the years along with the standard in which the homes are built. Some conditions change over the years because the level of knowledge has increases over the years as building science is studied. Some conditions are the result of past or current home owners that alter the condition or add items to the home. Here are some important areas to inspect or have inspected if you are buying an older home.

Attic and the roof system is an important system to inspect. The attic space and the roofing effect each other and if correct they will help extend the life of each other. Older homes may have less insulation than is recommended by modern standards. Having the proper amount will help the home owner reduce heating and cooling bills.

The amount of ventilation in the attic space is also important, too little ventilation can result in high attic temperatures which will age the shingles more rapidly. A lack of ventilation can also create a condition where moisture is trapped and condensation is formed. High moisture levels can aid in the growth of mold, reduce the effectiveness of insulation and create a conducive condition for wood destroying insects. Home owners will also improperly vent shower vents in to the attic space exaggerating the moisture issues.

Electrical systems should also be inspected. Older homes especially those built before the 1960’s have a chance of having two prong outlets instead of the modern three prong outlets. The size of the service can also be an issue. Amperage for older homes may not be enough when additions are added onto the home and electrical appliances are added to the home.

Energy efficiency has made great improvement over the years. Old gravity furnaces made still be operating (yes I have come across them) however, the gravity furnace is not an energy efficient appliance. The cost of replacing such a furnace will be well worth the expense as the energy savings will be more than enough to recoup the cost. Energy efficiency has also improved for other appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioners. Although determining the efficiency of appliances is not in the scope of a normal home inspection you can be fairly certain that any appliance over 15 years old is not the tops when it comes to being energy efficient.

Other areas that will be looked at that are done during all home inspections include the grading and the gutters and downspouts. These areas can effect the foundations and moisture issues. These should be inspected during all home inspections, however with increased age they are more likely to be in need of repair or improvements.

How Can I Power Small Appliances in My Home Using Solar Energy?

When you consider all of the items in your home that use electricity, the list, as well as the cost, can be daunting. Many people are beginning to use solar energy for at least some of the power required in their

households.

Solar energy can help power some of your small appliances, particularly if those appliances are in a certain area of your home. For example, you may want to provide solar power for many of the electronic devices in a home office to protect them in the event of a power failure. To do this, you can buy or build your own solar power generator. An Internet search will provide a wide range of generator suppliers. However, you can build your own unit, often for less than $400.

Here is one way to build your own generator. You can make or purchase solar cells to make a solar panel. New cells are available from many retailers, or you may consider buying used or slightly imperfect cells at significant discounts on eBay. Next step: Purchase a deep-cycle rechargeable battery, one that is at least 12 volts. These batteries are often used for boats or recreational vehicles. Be sure to buy a container for the battery to cover any terminals that might be accessible. You will need to obtain a 12-volt DC-power meter.

Then, buy a DC input, which will allow you to run DC-powered appliances. Many appliances are A.C. powered, so you will have to purchase an inverter, which will convert the D.C. power to A.C. Before buying the inverter, estimate the amount of power you will need. Wattage is usually found on most electrically powered items, usually on the bottom or back of the item. You can also find typical wattage for many items on the Internet. Combine the wattage of the items you plan to power with your generator, and then buy an inverter with at least that wattage.

Attach the meter and the DC input to the top of your battery, using a drill. With insulated wire, attach your meter to the battery wing nut terminals. Be sure that you connect the negative pole before the positive one. In the same manner as you connected the meter, connect the DC input and finally the solar panel to your battery.

When you place your solar panel in the sun, note that it can take up to eight hours to power a never-used or dead battery. Allow about three hours to charge a weak battery.

Five Secrets To Getting The Best Gas Stove Price

We all like to save money, especially when we save money buying something we really need in our lives like home appliances. The one room that takes center stage is the kitchen, and undoubtedly we all are looking big-time deals, which would include a tremendous gas stove price.

Gas stoves bring the power of fire to the kitchen, and for those who make the kitchen their haven, being able to harness this power leads to some of the most satisfying moments in life, as well as some of the most delicious moments. While it can be intimidating to deal with an open flame, it can be more nerve-wrecking to know whether you’re scoring a serious amount of savings when you buy a gas stove.

Sometimes appliance stores will sell a package of kitchen appliances together so that with one purchase, you are able to deck out your kitchen with all of the appliances you need. It can seem tempting, but some people consider themselves fairly well-versed in the kitchen enough to warrant buying a gas stove all on its own so as to find “the best”.

The truth is that “the best” always varies from person to person & family to family. It’s these types of dilemmas that make it vital to really know what to look for when you go shopping for the right gas stove.

Luckily, home appliance experts can agree that these five secrets that could give you some deep intel as you hit the market:

Spending More Doesn’t Get You More – Many consumer-advocacy publications & services note that some of the best models can often give you the most options at a great price. Even though the ‘pro’ model is nice, you might get more bang for your buck a price tier or two lower.

Know Your Needs – Are you single? In a relationship where both of you live together? Do you have children or are planning on having kids? An answer to these simple questions may help steer you in the right direction so that you buy the right gas stove for you.

Have A Budget – As with any remodeling/refurbishing/replacing situation, you never want to leave home without establishing a budget. A working budget allows you to not spend more than you can afford, as well as make you a bit more diligent in looking for the stove that meets your criteria.

Resale Value or Value in Use – Real estate gurus note that many sellers are doing all they can to up the ante on their home’s resale value, including some high-end appliances. You need to think about whether your choice in gas stove today has great resale value & nothing else or if you favor great resale value even after real-life use.

Choose The Right Day – Merchants & consumer experts note that finding the right day to shop is very important when looking for a good deal on a gas stove or any appliance. Thursdays are high on the list as sale pricing for the weekend starts to go up. Also, holiday sales are actually pretty good ways of getting your gas stove at the right price. Finally, depending on whether your local appliance store employs people based on commission, going toward the end of the month may be a way to have a little more clout in the negotiation game.

A good gas stove price can make a tough decision easier simply because you’re keeping a little extra change in your pocket. Just be sure you know what you’re looking for before you buy.

Home Improvement Tips 101

There is no place like home – it could small or big this is the place where we live with our family and friends feeling safe and happy. People would always want their home to appear in a good and clean manner. So on a periodic basis taking up home improvement project is not a bad idea. Mostly home improvement things are do-it-yourself. It is simply a course of adding new things in your home or refurbishing it. Similarly home improvements are of many types; here you can apply roofing, flooring, siding, repairing, replacing, windows, painting, improving back yard and much more. These are sturdy things and doing it yourself could be daunting. So the best would be to hire a home improvement contractor that can do this task easily for you. They are the way to spruce up your home.

You first need to understand the requirements of your house. Know the factors involving home improvement: why do your need to improve your house or garden now? Are their any barriers involved? What is the budget comprising to do the job? Do not move ahead without proper planning, once you finalize the budget stick with it. Finding a home improvement contractor would not be difficult – go for some local home shops or do a well research online. Look only for a reputable home improvement company and explain them your needs. Overall completing this job would increase the value of your home.

Home Improvement Tips

For some people hiring a home improvement contractor could be expensive – do consider below given do-it-yourself tips:

Kitchen – Kitchen renovation is fun. You need to choose right materials for your kitchen. Going for marble and granite kitchen countertop would be an enduring choice as you going to use for upcoming decades. Other things to be considered is color selection, suitable lighting, getting appliances and choosing quality sinks.

Bathroom – For a bathroom it is good to have sliding or ceiling ambience light and select some good bathroom cabinets, marble counter tops and vanity tops with shiny reflective surface.

Flooring – You need to concentrate more on flooring. Check if you need repair to loose resilient floors and Vinyl floors. You must clean and repair the carpet when even required. Know more about wall-to-wall carpeting too as it gives outstanding look to your home.

Backyard – When it comes to garden the best thing to add up is Floating fountains they are just are cool. If you require a new walkway to be colorful then flagstone, concrete pavers and bricks are of good choice. Do contact any excavation company if your need pond clearing.

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Gas Leak Detection – Identifying and Handling Gas Leaks

Many homes use natural gas for heating and home appliances. Gas leak detection is something every household should take seriously if you want to prevent potential harm to you and your loved ones.

Natural gas is a safe and trustworthy energy source. Compared to the electricity, people are choosing natural gas in their daily lives because of its affordability. However, it is highly combustible and leaking is extremely dangerous for your health and your home too. The natural leak happens very slowly causing carbon monoxide poisoning. You will not immediately identify the gas leak. To help ensure that you live safely using natural gas, be aware of the signs of a leak.

Natural gas is odourless and colourless. Gas companies add a “rotten eggs” smell to make it recognizable in case of a leak. If you detect this smell when walking into your home, this is a clear sign of a leak. Also be aware of strange sounds, like hissing or whistling. These noises come from the pipeline or from the appliances. A leak in a gas pipe can sometimes cause bubbling in standing water around the home. Mark the direction of the gas line so you know which area needs to be checked. The unknown air from the ground it`s a clear sign of gas leak causing dirt to be thrown into the air or plants to be blown away. While plants can certainly die due to a variety of reasons, plants that die without a visible cause could indicate a leak. Also, check if a fire or a flame is coming from the ground.

The gas leak can be dangerous for your health if you don`t take necessary measures. Gas leaks change the amount of oxygen available and as you breathe less oxygen you will start feeling tired and have headaches. You are having a leak in your home, if you or others in your family experience sudden and unexplained symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, distress, irregular breathing, chest pain, nose bleeds, asthma, loss of appetite and many more. Even your pets can feel the same symptoms over high levels of gas leak exposure.

If you smell gas in your home, you should always take action immediately. First of all – turn off the supply. Next, get fresh air into your home – open all the windows and doors. If you can`t open the windows, get outside as soon as possible. You should avoid smoking and using matches or candles.

Always make sure that your household appliances are properly installed and inspected yearly. It`s easier to deal with a leak by stopping it from occurring in the first place.