Archive for September, 2012

Bellows Falls VT Electrical Guide: How Surge Protection Protects Your Home

Monday, September 24th, 2012

Your Bellows Falls VT home is filled with devices attached to and drawing power from the electrical system. You probably have components in place to protect certain devices, such as your computer and television from power surges, but what about the rest of your home? Power surges can occur at any time and they can have a direct, negative impact on your major appliances and even the wiring in your house.

 Why Surge Protection Is Necessary

A power surge occurs when a larger than normal volume of electricity courses through the wires within a circuit. Normally, your home is protected against such surges. Fuses are designed to blow out if the current gets too strong and circuits breakers are designed to trip. But in certain circumstances, surges can occur anyways.

They can occur during electrical storms with a lot of lightning flashes. They can occur when there are interruptions to the power entering your home, especially if it goes on and off frequently. They can even happen simply because of a hiccup in a transformer supplying your home with power.

Protecting Your Home and Appliances

The wiring in your home is not designed to handle sudden surges of electricity, especially not if they happen often. It can damage and fray the wiring and eventually lead to power loss or even an increased risk of fire. Your appliances will be damaged even quicker as the sensitive circuitry and electronic component inside can be broken by a sudden surge of excess electricity.

For all these reasons, it is recommended that you have a whole house surge protector for your Bellows Falls VT home. These devices stop these large surges of electricity from entering your wiring, stopping them at the circuit breaker and preventing shorts in things like your air conditioner or heating system. Contact HB Energy Solutions today to learn more about what these devices can do.

Acworth NH Heating Quesiton: What is a forced air heating?

Monday, September 17th, 2012

There are many types of heating systems in Acworth NH, but one of the most common you will hear about is forced air heating. You likely already have a forced air heating system in your home, but what exactly does this mean and what impact will it have on your selection of a new heating system in the future?

To start, a forced air heating system is unique in that it does not directly heat your home. Instead, the heating system itself – either a heat pump or a furnace – produces heat which is then applied to an air supply and distributed throughout your home via air ducts by an air handler.

So, let’s say you have a gas furnace. When your thermostat turns on because it gets below a certain temperature inside your home, the gas furnace receives a signal to start burning fuel. The pilot light ignites and gas starts burning. As the fuel burns, the furnace blows air through a heat exchanger. That air is then heated to a certain temperature (depending on your furnace) and transferred to the air handler, which uses another fan to blow the air through ductwork to the individual rooms in your home.

So, the air is forced through ductwork and then through vents to heat your home – hence a forced air heating system. The same type of system operates when you have a heat pump, although the heat being applied to the air flow is not from the combustion of fuel but from the process of compressing and expanding the refrigerant gas inside the heat pump, effectively transferring heat energy from outdoor air.

Over the years, forced air heating has become one of the most efficient ways to heat a home, though radiant heating is a close second. If you are installing a new heating system in your Acworth NH home for the first time, consider the benefits of a forced air system and what they could mean for your heating bills.  For more information about installing a new heating equipment, including furnaces, boilers, and wood stoves, call HB Energy Solutions!

Springfield VT Solar Guide: How Solar Power Works

Monday, September 10th, 2012

A solar power system offers the cleanest form of energy for your Springfield VT home. Solar energy is completely renewable, and you can always rely on the sun as a consistent power source. Before deciding to install a solar power system in your home, however, it is a good idea to learn how solar power works.

Solar Cell

A solar cell is the main component of a solar power system. It takes the energy of sunlight and converts it into electricity. Solar cells are made of special materials known as semiconductors. Silicon is the most commonly used material for making these semiconductors.

When light hits the cell, some part of it is absorbed within its semiconductor material. Silicon has some special chemical properties. There are 14 electrons in an atom of silicon, which are arranged in three different shells. The silicon atom always looks for ways to fill up its last shell, so it shares electrons with four nearby atoms. This structure of silicon makes it ideal for making solar cells.

When sunlight gets absorbed, one of the electrons in the bonds between silicon atoms increases its energy level and moves around more freely. That electron moves around the crystal, generating current. The current can be drawn out for external use by introducing metal links on the top and bottom of the cell. The solar cell generates only a small amount of energy. In order to get more energy, many solar cells should be interconnected to make a panel.

Thin Film Solar Panels

Traditional crystalline silicon systems are bulky and installing them requires a lot of work. Thin film crystalline silicon is the latest in solar technology. In this system, a solar cell is made by placing several thin photovoltaic films on a substrate. It has a lower photovoltaic efficiency than traditional system. However, it is expected that its efficiency will be increased in the near future. Thin film solar power system works in a way similar to that of traditional crystalline silicon modules.

Solar power system can be installed in any Springfield VT home, no matter whether it is small or big to meet any electrical requirement. Though the initial cost of installation is high, the solar power system offers better returns. It helps you enjoy long term savings by reducing or cutting the need to pay utility bills. For more information, contact HB Energy today!

Weston VT Plumber’s Guide: Locate Your Septic Tank Electronically

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

If a problem develops with your Weston, VT home’s septic tank, you want to be able to find it as quickly as possible to check and/or repair the problem. However, it’s not always easy to know where the septic tank is. Unless it is clearly marked, and only if you have seen where it was located before and didn’t just move in recently, a septic tank can be hard to find, especially if service hasn’t been performed on it in some time. Thankfully, if this is the case, there are tools that allow you to find your tank electronically.

First, know that your septic tank is usually about 4.5 feet by 8 feet in the ground and can be buried anywhere between four inches and four feet deep. You can also call your local utilities markers to get a map of where your gas lines and electrical cables are located – something that can be done for free by dialing 811.

Now, there are quite a few tools that work well to find your septic tank without electronics, but if you want to get it done much faster and ensure you are accurate, you hire a plumber who can use a locator and a remote flushable transmitter. The idea is very simple: Drop the transmitter down the toilet, flush it and wait a few minutes for it to appear in the septic tank and then flip on your locator and track it. This is a very accurate method and the transmitter will remain in your septic tank for quite a long time, meaning you can find it whenever necessary until the problem you are having is solved.

If you need someone to handle a repair issue with your septic tank, you should call HB Energy Solutions. We can find your septic tank and perform any necessary repairs very quickly.