Archive for November, 2012

3 Things You Should Look For In a New Furnace in Ludlow

Monday, November 26th, 2012

Getting a new furnace for your Ludlow home can be a stressful time. But it can also be an exciting time as you get ready to enjoy efficient and reliable heat for your home this winter. At HB Energy Solutions, we’ve installed countless furnaces for our customers in the Ludlow area. For this blog post, we thought it would be a good idea if we put together the top 3 things to look for in a new furnace.

The Size of the Furnace

One of the most common furnace problems that we see in Ludlow is a furnace that is the wrong size for the home. In many cases, the furnace is too large for the home. Having a load calculation performed on your home is a great way to figure out exactly what size of furnace you need. Here are some of the benefits to having a load calculation performed on your home:

  • Greater efficiency – When your furnace is the right size, it will most likely operate more efficiently.
  • Greater comfort – Furnaces that are too big often cause large temperature swings and hot and cold spots in your home.
  • Reduced wear and tear – When the furnace is too big, it turns on, quickly heats your home and then turns off. When your house cools town, it turns back on again. This causes extra wear and tear on your furnace.

Efficiency Rating

Furnaces are given an annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating which measures how much of the fuel they consume over a season is actually converted into usable heat. Many old furnaces have an AFUE of around 60%. This means that 40% of the fuel they consume is wasted. Newer furnaces can have an AFUE of 95% or higher.

Fuel Type

Depending on where you live and many other factors, it might be a good idea to at least consider the fuel options that are available to you. For example, if you already have a natural gas running into your home, you may want to consider switching from an electric furnace to a gas-fired one. In many cases, natural gas is less expensive than electricity. This is all highly dependent on your specific situation and budget.

If you’d like help picking out a new furnace for your home in Ludlow, contact the heating experts at HB Energy Solutions. We have years of experience working with all types and brands of furnaces. We can help you find the correct size and efficiency rating for your home. Call us today! 

Signs That You Need Heating System Repair Service in Chester, VT

Monday, November 19th, 2012

When it comes to keeping your Chester, VT home’s heating system operating at the levels of efficiency and effectiveness that you demand, a proper installation and regular, professional maintenance are necessary. Of course, even with the best installation possible, a high-quality machine and meticulous maintenance service, your heating system is still going to have some trouble every now and then. When problems do develop with your heater it is important that you procure the necessary, professional heating system repair service you need as quickly as possible. The early detection, diagnosis and treatment of your heating system problems is the best way to ensure uninterrupted heating service as well as to keep the necessary repairs as minimal as possible. When you need heating system repairs in Chester, VT, you need to call the heater repair service experts at HB Energy. We have all the skills, training and experience necessary to get your heater back on track in no time. Of course, before you can schedule heating system repairs you must be aware of a problem with your heater. Here are some common warning signs and indicators that you should call for heater repairs.

Any decline in your home heating system’s performance is reason enough to call your professional heating service provider. If you notice that your home has developed cold spots or if your heater is having trouble keeping your home at the desired temperature, call for repair service immediately. These conditions are indicative of a problem with your heater that will only worsen if given the time.

If you notice an increase in the cost of operating your home heating system but have not made any changes to your heating habits you may have a problem requiring professional repair service. This is clearly a case of reduced heating efficiency, and there are many factors that can contribute to this problem. Call for repair service the moment you notice this heating cost increase.

Also, don’t try to convince yourself that an irregularity or inconsistency with your heater is to minor to be cause for alarm. Sure, strange sounds or odors coming from your heating system may not seem like that big a deal. It is important that you do not put off repair service for these conditions, though. They can be warning signs that a much more serious problem is developing.

For more information about keeping your heater operating efficiently and effectively with professional heating system repair service, call HB Energy Solutions. We’ll help you keep your Chester, VT home warm this winter.

Why Consider a Solar Heating System in Bellows Falls?

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Increasing energy costs have become a major concern in the past few years. As the price of keeping your home comfortable continues to increase many Bellows Falls, VT homeowners are looking for ways to reduce the amount of energy that they use. One of the most obvious ways to do so is to make sure that you are not wasting energy. Proper insulation, high-efficiency heating systems and sealing up air leaks are among the most common measures taken to reduce the amount of energy wasted in homes. The truth is, though, that most people waste a lot of energy every day. We’re not talking about leaving the windows open while heating your house, either. Each day that you let the sun’s energy go unused in your home you are wasting the potential of this sustainable, environmentally friendly energy source. If you live in a cold climate but your Bellows Falls, VT home gets a lot of sun exposure you may want to consider the installation of a solar heating system by HB Energy Solutions. Consider this information about how these systems work and the benefits they present to your home.

With an active solar heating system a liquid or air is heated by solar energy and is either transferred directly to your living space or to a storage system. If you are planning to use a radiant heating system or a boiler then a liquid system is probably your best option, as they lend themselves better to storage. They store the collected solar heat in tanks of water, and the heat from the working liquid passes through a heat exchanger into the distribution liquid.

There are a few different ways to distribute heat with a solar liquid system. Radiant heating is a popular method, though central forced-air systems may also be used. In a forced air system a heating coil is used. Air coming from your living space is heated, and additional heat may be supplied by your furnace. It is important to have a professional help with the sizing of the system and components to ensure that sufficient heat will be created.

The benefits of solar heating in your home are many. While the collectors and installation certainly make solar heating an investment you can greatly reduce the heating costs in your Bellows Falls, VT home, saving money over time. It is a sustainable energy source and is very environmentally friendly. If you are interested in cutting down on the amount of energy used to heat your home while also reducing your environmental impact, consider the installation of a solar heating system from HB Energy Solutions.

Heating with Wood Safely and Efficiently in Springfield VT

Monday, November 5th, 2012

When done correctly, burning wood is one of the simplest and most efficient ways to keep your home warm. As long as new trees are being planted to replace those that are harvested for wood it is a sustainable, carbon neutral practice as well. If you’re interested in supplementing your home heating system – or even replacing it – with a wood burning system, HB Energy Solutions has some information to help you make the right decision for your home. Consider this information and follow the tips and you should have no problem heating your Springfield VT home safely and efficiently with wood.

  • Choose the right stove for your home. A fireplace is great for heating a single room, but they are not really designed to keep your whole house warm. A good wood burning stove can handle the task of heating your home efficiently and effectively. Be sure that your stove meets EPA guidelines and that it is properly sized for your home.
  • Don’t expect to just walk outside, find some wood and be set for the winter. You must season your wood for at least six months, keeping it off of the ground and protected from the elements while it dries. Green wood will not burn efficiently and smokes a lot more than well-dried wood.
  • Chop your wood as evenly as possible. Keeping your wood supply uniform allows for more even burning. Be sure to split your wood down to a fairly small size as well. This too helps wood burn more evenly and efficiently. It also speeds up the drying process.
  • Start your stove off hot. Get a mound of coals going and add a few logs all at once. This will help your stove burn wood as completely and cleanly as possible.
  • Keep an eye on your chimney. If you are generating a lot of smoke that means that the combustion is not complete enough and that you are creating a lot of pollutants. This can lead to chimney fires.
  • Do not burn trash in your wood burning stove. This creates more pollution. Also avoid questionable, moldy wood.

We hope that this information is helpful and that you enjoy your wood burning season. If you have any questions about the operation or maintenance of your wood burning stove be sure to call HB Energy Solutions. We’ll help you get the most out of the wood burning stove in your Springfield VT home.