Archive for the ‘Home Improvement’ Category

Get Your Heater Back in Shape!

Monday, September 23rd, 2019

heating-technicianThere are obviously parts of the country that are still pretty warm right now.  New Hampshire obviously isn’t located in one of those parts. Sure, we’ve got some warm weather to come, but anyone can tell that the hottest days of the year are firmly behind us. And any can also tell that the coldest nights of the year are getting closer! Is your heater ready to ensure that your home is warm and cozy throughout the winter season?

The only way that you can really count on your heater, no matter how cold it may be outside, is if you do everything in your power to keep that heater in the best working condition possible. That’s where our technicians come in. When you work with our team, your heater will get the attention that it needs to truly excel in its operation. Let us know if you have any concerns, and let our pros handle your HVAC services in New Hampshire.

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Is Your AC Ready for Replacement?

Monday, August 26th, 2019

ac-technicianGeez, summer isn’t even over yet then we’ve got all winter to get through. Why are we talking about replacing ACs already?

Well, because it pays to be prepared. If your air conditioner is struggling to get through the end of the summer, and repairs are no longer justified due to age or overall dissatisfaction with the system, why wait until next summer? Doesn’t it make more sense to get out ahead of the problem, rather than to wait for summer to be on the horizon once more?

Even if you’re not necessarily thinking about replacing your system immediately, it is always a good idea to keep some reasons for replacement in mind. When you get used to a “pretty decent” performance from your air conditioner, it can be easy to forget that you deserve so much more! In today’s post, we’ll cover some reasons why homeowners might want to seriously consider an AC replacement. We’re here for your air conditioning services in New Hampshire. (more…)

A Short Cycling Heater Is Not “Good Enough”

Monday, January 14th, 2019

just-right-temperatureThere are areas in this country where the heating system is not nearly as important as the air conditioner. Even in those areas with consistently cool weather in the winter season, the heater is not always a top priority. It can be easy to overlook issues with one’s heater as attention is diverted to more pressing matters. Here in Vermont and throughout the northeast, of course, few matters are more pressing than heating issues during a frigid winter cold snap.

Even so, some people do seem to take a “good enough” attitude when it comes to their home heating systems. Don’t fall into this trap! If your heater in Southern Vermont is not functioning properly in any way, you may be on the precipice of a slippery slope. Once you start sliding down that slope, it can be extremely difficult to stop the descent. Work with our team to have any necessary heating repairs in Ludlow completed as soon as possible. (more…)

Do I Need GFCI Outlets?

Monday, May 7th, 2018

GFCI-outletWhile there are many handy homeowners out there, the fact remains that there are still plenty of jobs that must be completed by trained, professional electricians in Acworth, NH. Case in point, the installation of new outlets in a new home or in those homes that are ready for an upgrade. One important question, in such instances, is which type of outlet should be used. If you think that all outlets are the same, then you are obviously not familiar with GFCI outlets—though chances are that you have seen an, in all likelihood, used them previously.

GFCI outlets provide a bit of extra protection from the potential dangers that are inherent with the use of electricity. Now, modern electrical systems are typically very safe for people to use, and that is precisely the point. If you think that you don’t need something like GFCI outlets because your system is already safe, well: it’s safe precisely due to such technologies. So read on, and let us know if you are ready to upgrade your outlets.

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Why Does My Heater Keep Shutting Down?

Monday, December 18th, 2017

chilly-couple-on-couchDecember is somehow already nearly halfway over. We’ve got a lot of the heating season left to go, though, and this being Vermont means that the cold weather is going to be pretty severe for the foreseeable future. If you hope to make it through the heating season in true comfort—or anything even resembling it—then you really need your heater to be firing on all cylinders. The fact that your heater is generating heat does not necessarily mean that it is doing so in the proper manner.

One question that we get from concerned homeowners now and again is why their heaters seem to be running in short bursts. The system starts up, but stays on only briefly before shutting back down again. While this may seem at first to be something of an odd quirk, the fact is that any problems with your heater have the potential to seriously disrupt your comfort. This particular problem is called short cycling, and it can definitely spell trouble for your heater in Ludlow, VT.

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Is a Furnace the Right Heater for Me?

Monday, August 28th, 2017

opening-furnace-cabinetFor many homeowners, August is one of the months that hits the old air conditioner the hardest. In this part of Vermont, though, it is when you start to feel the night air chill back down, a sign of autumn just waiting to make its triumphant return. We are just about at the end of August as it is, and that means that it is probably time to start really thinking about your home heating system. This is especially true if you are going to need a brand new heater installed this year.

If so, we recommend that you consider the installation of a furnace in your home. We offer a number of fine oil-fired furnaces for you to choose from, including those from trusted manufacturers such as Thermo Pride and Olsen-Airco. A furnace is a fine fit for many homes and can satisfy the user preferences of many homeowners. However, it is important to remember that there is no single furnace that is perfect for everyone. Read on for more information and feel free to contact us with any questions that you have regarding the use of a furnace in Ludlow, VT. (more…)

Why Is There Ice on My Ductless Mini Split?

Monday, February 13th, 2017

ductless-blowerWinters are famously tough in this part of the country. Frigid, sub-freezing temperatures are the norm. Because of this, many homeowners have been skeptical of using heat pumps to keep their homes warm and cozy. Because heat pumps, including ductless mini split heat pumps, transfer heat from the air outside into the house, common sense may dictate that they couldn’t handle the type of cold that we deal with in this part of the country.

Common sense isn’t always what it seems, though. In fact, ductless mini splits in Springfield, VT
have become more and more common in recent years. While it is true that heat pumps may have to work a bit harder and may lose a bit of that renowned efficiency when temperatures are very, very cold, they are actually capable of heating homes in our area all winter long. No system, of course, is totally problem free.

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Schedule an Energy Assessment Before Winter Arrives

Sunday, August 14th, 2016

You are probably still enjoying your trips to our many lakes, rivers, and streams just now, but summer is definitely going to be drawing to a close before long. Soon enough we’ll be seeing the leaves turn, and we’ll be revving up our heaters in place of our air conditioners before you know it. If you want to heat your home efficiently this winter, scheduling an energy assessment before turning your heater on is a good idea.

With a professional energy assessment in Bellows Falls, you’ll have the information that you need in order to prepare your home for an efficient heating season. A thorough energy assessment is not something that you can hope to complete on your own, so make sure that it’s our number you dial. We’ll determine what issues are present and we can resolve them for you effectively.  (more…)

How Can a Smart Meter Help My Home?

Friday, March 6th, 2015

A big part of reducing your energy usage is knowing how much energy you use on a weekly or monthly basis. But ascertaining exact numbers on your utility usage can be a challenge. One new tool that is making it easier for homeowners to get a handle on their energy usage is the Smart Meter. In fact, these meters are so helpful that in 2012, they became mandatory throughout the state of California. So what does a Smart Meter do that makes it so helpful? Let’s take a look.

What It Is

You are probably wondering what makes a Smart Meter so different, and here is the reason it is different: it reports on your electrical and natural gas usage daily. For residential properties, a Smart Meter reports on electrical usage every hour and gas usage at the end of every day; in commercial properties, electrical usage is reported every 15 minutes (gas reporting stays the same). The Smart Meter reports all this data to your utility company over a secure wireless network, and you can access your energy usage information right online. The Smart Meter can also work with solar energy, so you’ll be able to see in detail how much energy you are using from the power company and how much is generated by your solar panels. This specific information provides a baseline of your energy usage, which allows you to create a plan to reduce your overall energy usage.

What Are the Benefits?

Here are some of the benefits a Smart Meter can offer:

  • Instant outage reporting – because of the two-way communication between your Smart Meter and your utility company, any outage will be reported immediately by the Smart Meter. This helps provide better service from your utility company.
  • Reduce energy usage – having a direct reporting system allows you to see exactly when you may be overusing energy, which will help you to create an effective energy plan for your home or business.
  • Instant notification of over-usage – the Smart Meter can email you, text you or phone you when your energy usage goes too high, alerting you to potential problems with your energy utilities before they can become serious.

A Smart Meter upgrade for your southern Vermont property may be just the tool you’ve been looking for to help reduce your energy usage.

Professional Smart Meter installation is required, so call the experts at HB Energy Solutions today and see how a Smart Meter can help you!

Some of the Unusual Movies Released for Valentine’s Day

Saturday, February 14th, 2015

Hollywood has always tried to match movies up to the seasons to draw droves of viewers to the theaters: October is packed with fright-offerings, while the winter holidays skew toward warm and pleasing family films (as well as Oscar hopefuls). Valentine’s Day falls in an odd spot when it comes to the movie release calendar, however, since February tends to be a slower time for the film industry. The studios are as likely to slot strange movies that don’t fit anywhere else in their annual schedules into the Valentine’s Day weekend as they are films with powerful romantic appeal.

So, while the second weekend of February has featured hugely successful romantic comedies like Hitch, The Wedding Singer, and (of course) Valentine’s Day, some truly weird choices have debuted in this weekend as well. And a few have even gone on to tremendous success despite the bizarre match with the holiday. Here are a couple of the odder Valentine’s Day movie releases:

  • Dracula (1931): Yes, this Halloween perennial and the start of Universal Studio’s Classic Monsters actually came out on Valentine’s Day! But perhaps this makes some sense, as the Dracula legend has often received a “doomed lover” approach in the many years since Bela Lugosi made the aristocratic vampire a screen icon.
  • The Silence of the Lambs (1991): Does any film seem less appropriate for Valentine’s Day than this unnerving and sometimes very violent psychological thriller? What’s even more astonishing than the film’s release date is that The Silence of the Lambs eventually nabbed the Oscar for Best Picture, an almost unheard of occurrence for a movie released so early in the year.
  • Daredevil (2003): This Marvel comic adaptation featuring Ben Affleck as a blind superhero does contain a romantic subplot, but the stronger connection to Valentine’s Day may just be that Daredevil wears a bright red costume.
  • A Good Day to Die Hard (2013): The least successful of the Die Hard film franchise, this is an excellent example of a studio dropping a film into a weekend where it doesn’t fit in the hopes that it works as counter-programming. (It didn’t.)
  • Wayne’s World (1992): Now here is an example of counter-programming that clicked with audiences. This comedy based on a Saturday Night Live sketch turned into one of that year’s biggest hits and spawned a sequel.

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day with a trip to the movie theater, or you have your own special plans, everyone here at HB Energy Solutions hopes you and your loved ones have a wonderful weekend.