Skip to main content

Green Alternative Heating

Green Alternative Heating

greenWe spent the previous post discussing the measures that one randomly selected University was taking in the way of energy efficiency with green technology.  “Green heating and cooling systems fall under two distinct categories: passive and active.” Passive systems work by maximizing nature’s ability to heat and cool without furnaces or air conditioners [source: Green Technology]. “Among other things, passive technology includes constructing homes with white or light-colored roofs that reflect the sun’s energy instead of absorbing it.” As a result, the amount of energy it takes to cool a house is less. Passive designs also use windows that can keep the heat out and cool air in.  They remind me of staying safe from a sunburn by sitting in the shade as opposed to the chemical (active ways) of sunscreen.

According to our recent research on behalf of your St Louis Heating and Cooling near O’Fallon MO, active designs use a variety of mechanical heating and cooling systems. These systems tend to run on solar power, geothermal power or other sources of green energy.  It’s a gradual one, but the increase in green-energy use, according to your St. Louis Heating Sales near O’Fallon MO, in recent years is slowly having an impact.

“For one thing, Americans saved more than $19 billion in 2008 by using various green heating and cooling systems [source: U.S. Department of Energy].”  The cost is high, though, according to your St Louis Heating installation near O’Fallon. “But these green systems are not cheap — some solar collectors cost between $30 and $80 per square foot for installation.”  There are incentive programs offered now and then by the government, but not consistent enough to really go into details here.  The next several posts will cover all of the other green heating and cooling methods we uncovered.

Passive Cooling

Passive Cooling

passiveOn behalf of your St Louis Cooling Repair near South County MO, we are on a regular search for new information and research to pass along to you, in regards to green energy and cost effective, environmentally friendly ways to handle the heating and cooling of your home or business.

Along those lines, did you know that the sun is the ultimate provider of green energy?  A couple things that make it so are the constant and renewable nature of Solar power, the fact that it is not about to run out anytime soon.  There are, according to our research on behalf of your St Louis Cooling Installation near South County, ways in which you can benefit and enjoy the power of solar energy without the effects of direct sunlight.  “Passive solar energy is simple, has little to no moving parts and requires minimal upkeep. Passive solar-energy systems are designed to use natural principals of heat transfer instead of machines such as furnaces and air conditioners [source: Passive Solar Resources].”

It turns out, according to all that we read for your St Louis Cooling Sales and Service near South County, passive solar technology uses the building’s walls, windows and floors to collect, store and release the sun’s energy. “However, passive solar homes still need mechanical equipment, such as a forced-air system or radiant flooring to keep the temperatures cool in the summer and warm in the winter [source: Arizona Solar Center].” Direct gain systems are supposed to be the easiest of them all in terms of installation of cooling capable solar panels in St Louis MO.  In such systems, sunlight passes through windows where the light is converted into thermal energy. The walls and floors directly absorb and store the heat energy. As long as the room temperature is high, the interior of the homes will hold on to the heat. “When the temperature drops at night, the stored heat radiates through the living space.”

Alternates to Central AC Cooling That Actually Work

Alternates to Central AC Cooling That Actually Work

portable acMoving past the whole house fan option that we discussed in details in our previous two posts, we are going to look closer at other cooling options, on behalf of your St Louis Cooling sales near Collinsville IL, for those who either cannot get or do not choose to have a central air conditioner.

Portable air conditioners are what we will glance at first and they are actually similar to window units in operation. They sit on the floor (usually on casters) and use an adapter kit to vent the hot air through a hose running through a window, a wall, or a sliding glass door.  Some of the advantages we found in using these units to cool your space are as follows:  They’re easy to install and use and you can move them from room to room.  They come plagued with costly disadvantages, however, that we were able to uncover in our research on behalf of your Commercial Cooling Repair in St Louis near Collinsville.  The disadvantage list is as follows:  They’re almost twice as expensive and use more energy than a similar-size window unit with the same cooling capacity.  At this time, there are no Energy Star–qualified portable room air conditioners.  Portable air conditioners usually range in price from $300 to $1,500 depending on the size, features, and efficiency.

There are mini-split systems to consider according to our findings on behalf of your St Louis Industrial Cooling Sales near Collinsville.  “Long popular in Europe and Japan, a mini-split system air conditioner (sometimes called ductless AC), is a hybrid of central air and a window unit. A small condenser sits outside and connects through a conduit to an inside evaporator mounted high on the wall or ceiling.”  The advantages here are the silent operation they provide.  The condenser is outside, so you won’t hear the noisy portion at all.  The indoor fan is ultra-quiet.  Also, this system can be mounted virtually anywhere since its components are so small.  We have more details we could share, that we uncovered in our St Louis Cooling Service research, but this will at least give you some of the basics and a clear understanding that there are definitely alternate ways to cooling your space, aside from the central AC we all know and love.

How Smart Technology Impacts HVAC

How Smart Technology Impacts HVAC

smart technologyToday, we will talk about smart homes and the future that they hold in our country and globally as well.  What does a smart home do and what does that mean for the forecast business and health of industries such as your St Louis HVAC near Wentzville MO?  “Everything is getting smarter these days. From the cars we drive to the televisions we watch, just about every piece of tech you can imagine has been outfitted with smart technology. It’s only natural, then, that our homes would be next.”

We set out to research the subject on behalf of your St Louis HVAC sales and service near Wentzville both for our own curiosities and for the interests of our followers.  We know that connected systems and phone apps already give us the ability to control our home’s lighting, HVAC systmes, security systems, surveillance, and entertainment at the push of a virtual button. It is safe to assume that these “smart” technologies will continue to evolve and become integrated into our homes, allowing us to control a home’s comfort levels down to the very last detail.

How does the above realization change the way we see and experience the world of HVAC installation and maintenance in St Louis near Wentzville MO?  “Since many of these innovations are already available on the market, this movement toward a smarter home has changed how HVAC engineers and designers approach the next big thing, which is good news for those of us who appreciate high-tech solutions.”  We will dive into further details here in the next post on HVAC future in things such as fully automated homes and even 3D printed air conditioners.

Unique HVAC Solutions and Water Technology

Unique HVAC Solutions and Water Technology

air conditioningWe have just recently been settled in on the subject of higher efficiency HVAC options here in the US and other places globally on behalf of your Commercial HVAC Sales and Maintenance in St Louis near Ladue.  Today, we want to look at something called an On-Demand Hot Water Recirculator.  “A U.S.-based company out of Rhode Island has designed an ‘on command’ pump for a home’s water lines, which allows cool water to be circulated back into the water heater upon activation.”  We will also examine ice-powered air conditioning and a couple other new inventions in the HVAC community.

The purpose of this design is to minimize the waste that we all tend to add to in the water world in the name of proper water temperature.  “This product was engineered to be a solution to a major problem to which all of us contribute: Each year, the average home wastes 12,000 gallons of water just waiting for that water to warm up.” Recirculating this otherwise-wasted water back into the system is an eco-friendly solution that’s bound to play a huge part in future homes.

Ice-Powered Air Conditioning is next on the agenda on behalf of your HVAC in St Louis near Ladue.  Air conditioners seem to be prime systems for gaining improvement through minor and sometimes major adjustments.  For this reason, a California-based company has created an ice-powered A/C system called the Ice Bear. “The Ice Bear essentially works by freezing water in a tank overnight, so the ice can help cool a building the next day. So far, the design has been able to provide enough cooling for a building for up to six hours, after which, a conventional commercial air conditioner takes over.”  When it comes to this particular HVAC technology, it still has a ways to go.  But for now, it can work in 6 hour increments, which is definite progress.

 

The Scoop on Cooling Efficiency

The Scoop on Cooling Efficiency

energy efficiencyLooking even closer at heating and cooling dynamics in our recent research on behalf of your St Louis Cooling installation near Kirkwood MO, we stumbled upon rather interesting information surrounding the air conditioning and heat pump cycles.  “Air conditioners and heat pumps use the refrigerant cycle to transfer heat between an inside unit and an outside unit.”  The only way in which heat pumps differ from air conditioners is the fact that they can reverse by way of a special valve that does not exist for the AC, but does for the heat pump.

Both must operate within specified parameters that dictate a certain maximum level of energy consumption and new efficiency standards for central air conditioners took effect in 2015.  As was true with furnaces, the newer standards differed by region, having greater stringency in the South and Southwest than in the North. According to our recent research on behalf of your St Louis Cooling Repair near Kirkwood, new central air conditioners sold for installation in the South and Southwest must meet a minimum 14 SEER; for units installed in the North, the 13 SEER minimum remains unchanged. Air-source heat pumps must meet the 14 SEER minimum regardless of where they are installed. In addition, central air conditioners installed in the hot, dry Southwest must meet a minimum 12.2 EER (or 11.7 EER for larger models).  These are all numbers found online in our recent research and collected from reliable internet HVAC sources.

It is true that the cooling performance of ground source heat pumps is measured differently.  “In contrast, cooling performance of ground source heat pumps is measured by the steady state EER instead of a seasonal measure. The ENERGY STAR program’s minimum requirements for ground-source heat pumps are 21.1 EER for open-loop systems, 17.1 EER for closed-loop systems, and 16 EER for direct expansion (DX) units.”  We will pick up here later and dive deeper on your St Louis Heating sales and install’s behalf with room air conditioners.  Stay tuned to learn more about BTUs and how to decide just what your room or rooms need in order to keep cool in the hotter months.

SEER and the Heating and Cooling World

SEER and the Heating and Cooling World

researchWhen it comes to heating and cooling we strive to bring you the latest news and information available to the industry on behalf of your heating installation and sales in St Louis near Bridgeton MO.  Today, we flip a coin and go from discussing St Louis Heating Sales to central air conditioners.  “Central air conditioners and air-source heat pumps operating in the cooling mode have been rated according to their seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) since 1992.”  Many people are clueless when it comes to the ratings of their systems and, mainly when they are shopping, this can be quite pertinent information to have.  So, let us describe some of the nitty gritty surrounding these numbers as they pertain to your St Louis Heating and Cooling maintenance and efficiency.

“SEER is the seasonal cooling output in BTU divided by the seasonal energy input in watt-hours for an ‘average’ U.S. climate. Before 1992, different metrics were used, but the performance of many older central air conditioners was equivalent to SEER ratings of only 6 or 7.”  This number has risen over time with the average central air conditioner sold in 1988 having a SEER-equivalent of about 9; then by 2002 it had risen to 11.1.

According to our research done recently on behalf of your St Louis Heating and Cooling sales near Bridgeton MO, the national efficiency standard for central air conditioners and air source heat pumps now requires a minimum SEER of 13, this has been the case since 2006.  Also, you cannot just receive an ENERGY STAR rating without working for it in the heating and cooling world. This title is only awarded to systems who achieve a minimum of 14.5 SEER.  Basically, the point of our post is to recognize the efficiency differences and the fact that they do exist in the AC and heat pump world.  Also, knowing a bit about their significance can and does make you a smarter shopper in the world of HVAC.

Elaborating Further on Heat Pumps and Central AC

Elaborating Further on Heat Pumps and Central AC

defineMoving onto the second phase of description we are planning on behalf of your St Louis Heating and Cooling installation near Fenton MO, we still have much to explain about your cooling system in your home.  Your air conditioner, to be precise, and though we told you the basics when it comes to the system and how it uses energy to remove actual heat from your space, unfortunately, it isn’t quite that simple.  The process gets quite a bit more complicated with all the controls and valves involved, its effect it rather amazing.  “An air conditioner takes heat from a cooler place and dumps it in a warmer place, seemingly working against the laws of physics. What drives the process, of course, is electricity — quite a lot of it, in fact.”

Our first type of cooling system to discuss, namely because it is the most common, are the central air conditioners and heat pumps designed to cool the entire house. “In each system, a large compressor unit located outside drives the process; an indoor coil filled with refrigerant cools air that is then distributed throughout the house via ducts.”  Heat pumps are then like central air conditioners with the exception of the cycle direction variations.   “Heat pumps are like central air conditioners, except that the cycle can be reversed and used for heating during the winter months.”  We will go into more details on behalf of your St Louis Heating and Cooling sales near Fenton, in regards to heat pumps below.

With a central air conditioner, the same duct system is used with a furnace for forced warm-air heating. In fact, the central air conditioner typically uses the furnace fan to distribute air to the ducts, so there is an overlap and therefore efficiency existent in the system by its simple nature.  Central air conditioners and air source heat pumps in their cooling mode of operation are rated according to their efficiency in the seasons.  We will break down these details in the next couple posts here, on behalf of your Heating sales in St Louis near Fenton MO.

Cooling Conjugations Begin

Cooling Conjugations Begin

definitionIn the world of heating and cooling, we like to stay abreast of the latest news and information, but sometimes we need to remember to take a step back and offer some basics for those following on behalf of your Cooling Sales in St Louis near Maryland Heights MO.  After all, revisiting some of the basics can earn people’s interest for future discussions on the higher level technology and latest news.  If we don’t take the time, for example, to educate you on the different types of cooling on today’s market, then discussing the nitty gritty will likely go right over your head.  So, let us begin, today, with the different types of air conditioning.

We will begin with a basic, yet essential definition of cooling.  “Air conditioning, or cooling, is more complicated than heating. Instead of using energy to create heat, air conditioners use energy to take heat away. The most common air conditioning system uses a compressor cycle (similar to the one used by your refrigerator) to transfer heat from your house to the outdoors.”

If you imagine that your house is a refrigerator, then you can get a good idea for starters.  “Picture your house as a refrigerator. There is a compressor on the outside filled with a special fluid called a refrigerant. This fluid can change back and forth between liquid and gas. As it changes, it absorbs or releases heat, so it is used to ‘carry’ heat from one place to another, such as from the inside of the refrigerator to the outside.”  This is a rather simple way to begin in your line of thinking, but it is a bit more complex that that really.  If you follow this and the next several posts, we will attempt to dive into much more detail in an effort to explain the different St Louis Cooling systems near Maryland Heights MO.

Mold and Your Air Conditioner

Mold and Your Air Conditioner

moldWhen it comes to the heating and cooling of your home, we write here on a weekly basis in order to bring you the latest news about the St Louis Heating and Cooling market from your Heating and Cooling Installation and sales in Earth City.  Today, we are broaching the subject of mold and how it is affected, or not, by your air conditioner. “Your air conditioners can do several things––keep your home’s indoor air cooler than outdoor temperatures, help to keep indoor airborne allergens at bay, and help keep your home’s humidity low.

But one thing it cannot do is kill mold. It can help prevent mold, but once it exists, your air conditioner cannot kill it.”  If you think that your heating and cooling system in St Louis is being infiltrated by mold, you need to call a professional who deals in such a disaster.

We can bring you tips on behalf of our research done for your St Louis Heating and Cooling Repair in Earth City on how to prevent such an occurrence. This is best done by first examining how it forms in the first place.  It is no secret that mold needs a damp, humid environment to breed. That means water is part of mold’s necessity. When you remove the water, and mold cannot thrive or survive. “According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), mold already exists in all homes, even in the driest of environments.”  In most cases, however, it exists on such a small scale that it’s not noticeable nor does it pose any sort of health risks.   It can and will grow into a bigger problem, quite literally, when you add moisture to the equation in your St Louis Heating and Cooling system in Earth City.  Sometimes leaks can be a total culprit in this arena.