Maintaining Good Indoor Air Quality During the Winter

Summer days when you could open your windows and enjoy a fresh breeze are long gone, and spring is still a couple months away. As a result, you and your family are breathing more indoor air than in months past. Unfortunately, having your house closed up all winter long could be keeping contaminants trapped indoors. The good news? There are several things you can do to improve the quality of the air inside your home. Check out these tips for maintaining good indoor air quality during the winter.

Keep Your Vents and Registers Cleanindoor air quality

Vents and registers inevitably get dusty. When that happens, the dust is circulated throughout your home every time the system kicks on. Clean them with a want attachment for your vacuum or even a flexible duster regularly to cut down on the amount of dust being circulated throughout your home.

Replace Filters Regularly

It’s always important to replace HVAC filters regularly, but it becomes even more important during the winter months. Your family and pets are spending more time indoors, so there is more hair and other debris in the air. This causes filters to fill up faster and need replaced more frequently.

Clean Ceiling Fan Blades

If your ceiling fan blades are coated in a layer of dust, they’re circulating that dust throughout your home every time you switch the fan on.

Add an Air Filtration System

Air filtration systems are a great way to improve indoor air quality year-round. There are several different types and models on the market, making it possible to find one that’s perfectly suited to virtually any budget. Air filtration systems are especially beneficial for pet owners.

At Larry & Sons, we can help you take care of your HVAC system and reduce dust and other allergens in your home. Contact us today to learn more.

How to Cut Cooling Costs This Summer | Top 5 Tips

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With temperatures nearing the 90s, life without an air conditioner seems downright impossible. Reduce your cooling costs this summer by utilizing these useful techniques! You’ll thank us later.’

How to Cut Cooling Costs

Install a programmable thermostat

A programmable thermostat will allow you to pre-set desired temperatures. This is especially useful for when you’re away at work or asleep. Now, you never have to worry again about forgetting to adjust the temperature back to normal.

For noticeable savings, we recommend setting your thermostat to a higher temperature when you’re away. Set your thermostat to 78 degrees only when you are home and in need of cooling. When it comes to cooling costs, every degree counts.

Take advantage of ceiling fans

Ceiling fans are great way to reduce cooling costs when the temperatures are mild, as they use significantly less energy than an air conditioning unit. However, it’s important to remember that ceiling fans don’t cool rooms, they cool skin. So always remember to turn them off whenever you leave a room. Otherwise, you’re only wasting energy.

Schedule regular tune-ups

Tune-ups were designed to help customers avoid spending money on frequent, costly repairs and to ensure their system is running at optimal efficiency. Take advantage of these services as they will help you and your family keep cool all summer long.

Additionally, regular tune-ups will increase the lifespan of your system, saving your from having to replace your system before you’re ready to. If you haven’t already, schedule your annual AC tune-up with Larry & Sons today!

Change air filters regularly

Your air filters should be changed at minimum every 1-3 months. After a while, your filters get jam packed with dirt, dust and debris, and if you don’t want that affecting your indoor air quality, then regularly change your air filters.

In addition to poor indoor air quality, a filter that isn’t regularly changed can lead to malfunctions and breakdowns in your unit. If your air conditioner won’t turn on or shows signs of freezing, always check your air filter first. Set calendar and phone reminders so you never forget again.

Seal leaks

Conduct a leak inspection in your home to locate all the places where air is leaking. Caulking and weatherstripping are two easy yet effective ways to put a stop to air leaks.

Caulking is generally used for small cracks and openings around doors and window frames, and weatherstripping is typically used to seal doors and windows.

You can also seal your air ducts with mastic sealant or aluminum foil tape to improve the airflow of your heating and air conditioning system, as well as save money and improve indoor air quality. After every major insulation project, however, always consult with your local professional HVAC company for proper ventilation.

To further save and add comfort and peace of mind, we highly recommend signing up for Larry & Sons Maintenance Program, which ensures two annual heating and air conditioning tune-ups, 15 % off all repairs, and much more!

For more tips and tricks on cutting home cooling costs, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+! Got a question? We’ve got the answer!

(IAQ) Indoor Air Quality Infographic

Does your family suffer from frequent asthma and allergy attacks? You may be suffering from poor indoor air quality! Learn how to easily improve the quality of your indoor air by following our room-by-room indoor air quality infographic.

Indoor Air Quality Infographic:

Improve Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Infographic

There are many sources of indoor air pollution in your home, including tobacco products, fuel-burning appliances, building materials, paint, cleaning products, HVAC systems, and outdoor sources, such as radon, pesticides, and outdoor air pollution. For more information on these various sources of indoor air pollution, see the Environmental Protection Agency’s Indoor Environments Division.

If you are interested in having an INDOOR AIR QUALITY ASSESSMENT for your home, don’t hesitate to give Larry & Sons a call! We specialize in ventilation, humidity levels, and indoor air quality. Our main goal is to make you comfortable and keep it that way!

We have over 60 years of experience working with customers in Hagerstown and the surrounding areas to make sure that the humidity and air quality are at safe and comfortable levels.

If you are interested in an air cleaner, let us know. We can go over the different types of mechanical and electronic air cleaners and the pollutants that each type can target. Most heating and cooling systems are not designed to work with a true HEPA filter, so installing an air cleaner is the only way to get the benefit of a high-efficiency filter.

Contact us for a licensed, background checked, and drug-free expert able perform nearly any home service you need. We offer installation, repair, and maintenance on heating, air conditioning, geothermal, solar, and indoor air quality systems. The best way to improve indoor air quality is to have a licensed professional do a whole-inspection test.

With our maintenance plan, we’ll remind you of your annual heating and cooling tune-ups, provide 15 % off all repairs and inspections, and much more! Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+ for more useful information and how-to’s.

Love is in the Air: How to Improve Indoor Air Quality

Love & Indoor Air Pollutants - Improve Indoor Air Quality

Love is in the air, but so are harmful indoor air pollutants. Make sure that the only sickness you feel this Valentine’s Day is lovesickness by learning how to improve you indoor air quality in your home. Larry & Sons is here to help you and yours breathe easy this Valentine’s Day and beyond, call us to have a licensed indoor air quality profession test your home’s air quality and provide the best solution for your home.

Indoor Air Quality Problems

As it can’t actually be seen by the human eye, we don’t often think about the quality of the air we breathe. But just because we can’t see the harmful contaminants in the air, doesn’t mean they don’t exist. If you suffer from asthma, allergies, frequent headaches or nasal congestion, just to name a few consequences, odds are, you also have poor indoor air quality (IAQ).

The quality of the air we breathe is determined by our surroundings. First ask yourself, “Where am I spending most of my time?” With life being as fast paced and hectic as it is, you might be unsure of where you spend the majority of your time. The EPA reports that a person spends, on average, 90% of their time indoors, where the concentration of some pollutants are can be 5 times higher than typical outdoor concentrations (Wow!). It may be a more difficult task to improve, say, the indoor air quality of a corporate office building because you have little control over that; however, you CAN start by tackling your home.

Common Indoor Air Pollutants

While it may take an entire group or population to improve the quality of our outdoor air, it only takes determination, persistence and a licensed, trained IAQ expert to improve indoor air quality. Let’s start by identifying common indoor air pollutant, according to the Center for Disease Control:

  • Molds
  • Pollen
  • Dander from pet fur
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Formaldehyde
  • Fumes emitted by imported drywall
  • Carbon monoxide that comes from burning propane, other gases and fuels, and charcoal
  • Household products such as cleaners and pesticides

Pollutants vary, but this at least gives you a basic idea of what the perpetrators of poor indoor air quality are. If you have a pet, especially one that constantly sheds fur, make sure to check your air filter frequently and change the air filters every 30 days. Have plenty of backup air filters available and consider setting an alarm on your phone for the first of the month to help you remember.

What Can I Do to Improve Indoor Air Quality?

Excellent question! Breathing cleaner air takes work – hard work, but it isn’t impossible. The first step to breathing cleaner air is scheduling an appointment with a licensed and trained indoor air quality expert. By learning how to improve indoor air quality for you and your family, you’ll be able to minimize asthma attacks, headaches, and nausea while also lessening the chances of suffering from heart disease, respiratory disease, and cancer. In the meantime, here are some steps you can take before our team arrives to improve the air quality today:

  • Clean your home often and with environmentally friendly products (pay special attention to dust and pet fur).
  • Open windows or run air conditioning systems to let fresh air in.
  • Keep mold away by repairing water leaks promptly (consider having a plumber do a thorough leak detection test).
  • Minimize use of bug spray and only use outside.
  • Never smoke indoors.
  • When cleaning mold, use detergent and water or a mix of no more than 1 cup of bleach mixed with 1 gallon of water. Do not use mix bleach with ammonia.
  • If you smell gas, leave the building immediately. Do not light any flames or sparks.

Love Your Air Quality

Larry & Sons is here to help you and yours breathe easy this Valentine’s Day and beyond. Call us to have a licensed, indoor air quality profession test your home’s air quality and provide the best solution for your home. With nearly 60 years of experience servicing customers in the tri-stat area, we are confident you will be in love with the improved air quality in your home when we’re done – give us a call today!