Renovating a historic home is a commonplace occurrence. What is not commonplace is considering the “thermal envelope” of the historic home BEFORE renovations occur.

What exactly is a “thermal envelope”?

A thermal envelope includes everything on a house that shields the interior from the exterior elements: exterior walls, doors, windows. All of these elements contribute to having either a tight thermal envelope (good) or a loose thermal envelope (bad). A tight thermal envelope has little heating or cooling loss; a loose thermal envelope includes drafts and discomfort.

That being said, it’s important to consider that older homes were built during times when central heating and air were rudimentary or, in many cases, non-existent. Present day, we demand certain amenities that might be difficult to achieve in an older home. The major amenity we desire is a perfectly controlled indoor climate, no matter what the weather conditions or temperature is outside.

It is necessary to determine how to attain this ideal level of interior comfort before you renovate.

Here are some important considerations before renovation:

Find the Breaches in your Thermal Envelope

This involves doing a blower door test to find the breaches from the attic to the basement. This test determines where the leaks exist so that the house can be shored up, tightening the thermal envelope. Fixes include installing energy efficient/weatherproof doors and windows, enhancing insulation and adding air sealing to your house.

A common breach involves the Stack Effect (read our blog about this here), which is a very real problem in many of these historic homes. Essentially, this is the way air moves in and out of a building. Warm air rises, going out of the top of the house in the winter. While the warm air is moving out the top, cold air is pulled in through the lower floors. The summer brings the opposite effect: cold air falls to the bottom floors while hot air is sucked in through the upper floors.

2. Ductwork

As we stated before, historic homes were built during a time when central heating and air was not the norm. As a result, the ductwork in these homes can be too small, old and even leaky. Assessing the viability of your ducts before renovating is crucial to the future comfort of your home. A new HVAC system cannot operate with a faulty delivery system. Your HVAC professional can determine if your current ductwork can be salvaged, modified or if it needs to be replaced.

3. Furnace/Air Conditioner Size

After addressing all breaches to the thermal envelope, the homeowner needs to determine if the HVAC system is an adequate size to comfortably regulate the temperature in the house. Is it too small? Too large? A professional will be able to determine the best size for your house and your needs.

By prioritizing your comfort in your new space with the help of a HVAC specialist, you can stave off future problems that are hard to remedy once construction is complete.

At A.N. Roth Heating and Cooling, the most common problem they see is that they are not asked to get involved with a renovation until AFTER there are comfort issues. General Manager Richard Roth advises that if you don’t address your air sealing and balances before your renovation, “no air conditioner can help you.”

It is difficult to achieve a perfect “new construction” feel in an older home with respect to comfort levels. But with attention to ventilation and temperature which involves improving insulation, making your home energy efficient and air sealing throughout the space, an ideal temperature can be achieved and you can thoroughly enjoy your newly renovated space.

There are few things more miserable than the AC going out on a hot summer day. So how did folks cope with hot weather at home before the advent of the air conditioner? The answer’s simple: houses were designed a bit differently to better fit the climate and, most importantly, beat the heat.

The Shotgun House

Shotgun houses got their name from their layout—you could hypothetically shoot a shotgun through the front door and it would go all the way through the house and out the back door. One of the biggest benefits of these oblong houses was that they maximized airflow by allowing cross-ventilation through the lined-up doors and windows. This would flush out the stagnant, hot air while encouraging the flow of new, cooler air to help maintain a reasonable temperature.

Wraparound Porches

Wraparound porches not only provided ample space to gather, but also served as a solace away from the indoor heat. People would sit outside on their porches, enjoying the shade and the summer breeze. These porches also cooled down the air directly outside of the home, helping to ensure that the air that trickled in through doors or windows would be colder than the air radiating off of a sunlit porch.

Cupolas

Designed to improve ventilation, cupolas are small structures with windows or vents that sit atop a roof. The vents are angled downward so that the fresh air from outside filters in to provide oxygen for the people and animals inside. As the fresh air enters, heat and moisture escape, keeping things comfortable while also keeping wood and hay dry.

The Dogtrot House

A dogtrot house features a less common design that’s often associated with the South. These houses are distinguished by an open-ended passage or breezeway between two living spaces. The purpose of the hallway is to optimize airflow between the two areas—one being a living space and the other a kitchen or dining room.

Awnings

Awnings are used not only for aesthetic purposes but also for providing shade, as they prevent sun rays from entering the home. While some sun is appealing, too much can cause the house to warm up to unbearable temperatures in the summertime. As an added benefit, awnings serve as a source of shade on your porch or patio as well.

Transom Windows

Dating back to 14th century Europe, transom windows are set in a horizontal beam above a door frame. In modern day designs, they are mainly decorative, but their original use was to provide ventilation while the door beneath was closed. This was ideal because air could pass through the windows while maintaining the security of the home.

Enter Modern Air Conditioning

Since Willis Carrier invented the electric air conditioner in 1902, home designs have opened up a bit, while transoms, awnings and other features that help keep a space cool have become less popular. Of course, that means when the AC goes out nowadays, things can really heat up inside. That’s where A.N. Roth can help. Since 1866, when Jacob Roth began selling and installing coal and wood-burning stoves, Louisvillians have come to rely on A.N. Roth Company for heating and cooling solutions for their homes and businesses. So next time you’re having HVAC issues, don’t hesitate to CONTACT US so we can bring comfort back home!

photo of Richard Roth

Richard Roth, General Manager of A.N. Roth Heating and Cooling, featured in Louisville Business First

A.N. Roth Heating and Cooling is proud to announce that we were chosen as the winner of the Small Business of the Year Category at this year’s Family Business Awards.

The 2021 Family Business Awards, presented by Louisville Business First and in partnership with the Family Business Center at the University of Louisville, recognized many local companies for excellence. Every finalist was a multigenerational family business headquartered in Greater Louisville or Southern Indiana. As a fifth-generation family business local to Louisville since 1866, we were honored to be nominated and considered a finalist alongside these other great local businesses.

Our History and Approach

19th-century photo of Jacob Roth

Founder of A.N. Roth Company, Jacob Roth

A.N. Roth Heating and Cooling is unusual even among family businesses, as fewer than 3% of family-owned businesses operate into the fourth generation and beyond. We believe that adaptability is the key to our long-term success. Since our ancestor Jacob F. Roth first immigrated to Louisville from Bavaria in the 19th-century, A.N. Roth has been adapting to meet the needs of our staff and customers.

We stay adaptable within our field by continuously evolving. This means keeping abreast of new technologies and methodologies to offer our customers the most progressive home comfort solutions. We also monitor consumer trends and listen to our customers to learn what to expect and where to improve. This is why, while A.N. Roth has been Louisville’s heating and cooling experts for over 150 years, we still lead the industry with state-of-the-art technology and innovative techniques. We are one of the only local HVAC firms to specialize in sustainable and Earth-friendly geothermal systems, energy-saving radiant flooring, and whole-house air filtration systems.

Richard, Karl Jr., and Phillip Roth III

Present-day leadership: Richard, Karl Jr., and Phillip Roth III

A.N. Roth understands that we’re in an evolving field and consider continuous innovation to be a cornerstone of our business. We never stop learning and improving our technology, which is why we are frequently sought out to solve complex HVAC problems and assist with specialized projects.

We also stay adaptable within our business. This means respecting our employees, keeping them engaged, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance. We’re thankful to have such a talented and dedicated team of professionals working at A.N. Roth, and we know our customers are too!

A.N. Roth Heating and Cooling is proud to be the Family Business Awards Small Business of the Year. If you’d like to learn more about A.N. Roth Heating and Cooling’s approach to business, you can read our full interview on Louisville Business First. If you’re interested in joining our team, you can see open positions on our Careers website. And if you’d like to get started on an HVAC project, you can visit our Virtual Estimate page, or contact us today!

Over the last year, many people have become aware of the need to consider the air quality in the home. As the United States moves towards reopening post-pandemic, more are becoming aware of the need to consider indoor air quality in public spaces, especially offices and schools.

Americans spend, on average, about 90% of their time inside. Between homes, offices, schools, and other public buildings, most of the air we breathe is indoor air. Additionally, studies indicate that indoor air is often significantly more polluted than outdoor air, even in the most industrialized cities. For this reason, indoor air pollution can have more of an impact on our health than outdoor air pollution. Indoor air quality is influenced by many factors, such as the type of building, age, humidity levels, filtration, ventilation, and more.

female-presenting office worker holding her head as though she has a headache

Sick building syndrome usually presents as headaches, nausea, respiratory irritation, dizziness, and fatigue.

Higher-risk populations are more likely to experience the effects of any pollutants, for example, children, the elderly, and immunocompromised individuals. However, anyone who experiences prolonged exposure to polluted air has the potential to experience health effects. These can range from relatively mild to life-threatening depending on the person, the type of pollutant, and the exposure. There is even a condition called sick building syndrome, or SBS. SBS refers to the symptoms of illness experienced in connection to a particular building.

What’s in the Air?

Air pollutants are minuscule, often invisible to the naked eye. The EPA identifies six common pollutants which are regulated and used as indicators of air quality. Particulate matter (or particle pollution) and Volatile Organic Compounds, or VOCs, are two of the most common categories of indoor air pollutants.

Particle Pollution

smog settling over an industrial city

Particle pollution is a huge problem worldwide.

Particle pollution is classified into three categories based on size: coarse particulate matter, fine particulate matter, and ultrafine particles. These encompass a range of pollutants, many of which are common in offices. For example, the air in many offices contains biological pollutants like bacteria, dust, mold spores, pollen, and cockroaches particulates. Buildings near busy roads or industrial areas are also likely to have fine and ultrafine particles from vehicle exhaust, power plant emissions, and smoke.

Out of all of the most common air pollutants, particulate matter causes the most adverse health reactions worldwide. This kind of pollution is associated with a range of respiratory problems like bronchitis, asthma, and increased mortality from COVID-19. In addition to respiratory and pulmonary problems, particle pollution is also closely linked to cardiovascular disease.

Volatile Organic Compounds

VOCs are gases emitted primarily from human-made sources. Sources of VOCs include cleaning products, pesticides, building materials, new furnishings, carpets, paint, copy machines, and more. As you can imagine, VOCs are common in office buildings, and especially in new developments.

Exposure to VOCs causes ear, nose, and throat irritation in most people. VOC exposure can damage the liver, kidneys, and central nervous system and cause certain cancers.

Work-Related Problems

In addition to the acute symptoms of sick building syndrome, low indoor air quality causes many other issues that can impact employees. With the advent of COVID-19, a serious concern is potential infectious disease transmission. Poor ventilation has been linked to the transmission of other diseases like severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, and Norovirus.

Among students, poor indoor air quality increases absenteeism and lowers test scores. Alternatively, among employees, higher indoor air quality results in better cognitive function, decision-making ability, and strategic thinking. In other words, it’s in everyone’s best interest, and a sound investment, to ensure that your office building has good air quality.

How Can We Fix This?

Air-Quality Assessment

humidifier in an office showing healthy airIf you’re interested in improving the air quality of your office building, a good first step is to have your building professionally evaluated through an on-site air quality assessment. This will allow you to determine the current air quality, pinpoint potential issues, and determine solutions.

An air-quality consultation will help identify pollution sources, whether they originate indoors or outdoors. It will also consider the age and condition of the HVAC system and inspect the air handlers and distribution systems. A professional will determine the health of your building and make recommendations in regard to ventilation, air filtration/purification, as well as temperature and humidity levels.

Air Filtration

bamboo trees and recycling inside office showing healthy air

The expense of clean office air is offset by saved human resource costs.

The most crucial solution for low indoor air quality is an HVAC system that effectively filters most airborne pollutants. We previously wrote about the capabilities of the IQAir Perfect 16, which is a high-performance filtration system available for homes and commercial developments. It removes not only 95% of particles larger than 0.3 microns, but it’s also 85% effective in removing particles above 0.003 microns (the smallest that exist.) And because it’s installed into the existing HVAC system, the IQAir Perfect 16 continuously delivers fresh, medical-grade clean air throughout the building.

Once you’ve upgraded your air filtration system, regular maintenance and changing the air filters are vital to keeping any filtration system in top condition. Installing an indoor air quality monitor will also keep track of pollutants and report fluctuations.

UV Purification

The IQAir Perfect 16 is not the only way to improve air quality in your home or office. There are personal air purifiers, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, and UV germicidal air purification systems. UV purification systems use ultraviolet light to render the environment inhospitable for a range of microorganisms.

happy male-presenting office worker leaning back with eyes closed

Clean office air enhances productivity and decreases absenteeism.

This technology stops molds, viruses, and bacteria from recirculating in your air, resulting in reduced allergy and asthma symptoms, and a reduced risk of infectious disease transmission.

Get Started

The professionals at A.N. Roth Heating & Cooling are Louisville’s air filtration and purification experts, offering solutions for residences, offices, schools, and more. If you’re ready to get started, contact A.N. Roth Heating & Cooling today, or get started with our free virtual estimates.

April is a great month to think about energy use, and how we can be good stewards of our environment. There are many changes individuals can make to help reduce environmental impact. That includes our residential HVAC systems.

A huge amount of energy is expended on HVAC. In 2020, about 10% of all the energy used in the U.S. was devoted to cooling building interiors. On average, more than half of American annual household energy consumption is devoted to heating and air conditioning.

Inefficient HVAC contributes to greenhouse gas emissions.

HVAC is also responsible for a huge percentage of carbon emissions. Direct greenhouse gas emissions from homes and businesses – primarily combustion of natural gas and petroleum for heating and cooking – accounts for over 12% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

As demand for more environmentally friendly HVAC systems grows, the market is rising to meet it. Here are some of the environmentally friendly HVAC technologies that are available for residential homes:

Radiant Heat

We’ve written before about the benefits of radiant flooring. The concept of radiant heat is ancient, but new technology means radiant heat is clean and accessible for everyone. Radiant flooring doesn’t have to rely on fossil fuels. It’s more efficient than forced-air heating because it eliminates duct losses and uses less electricity than forced air systems.

Radiant flooring can be achieved with hot water tubes or electric wires under the floor. Heat then rises from the floor, warming the entire home evenly. It’s not only better for the environment, but it’s also healthier for you! Radiant heat doesn’t distribute allergens as forced-air systems do.

Geothermal HVAC Systems

Geothermal energy has been used to heat and air condition buildings for decades and has many benefits. The temperature below ground remains relatively consistent throughout the year, despite fluctuations in weather. Geothermal systems tap into this free energy via an “earth loop” of underground pipes.

During a heating cycle, a geothermal heat pump extracts heat from the ground. As the system pulls heat from the earth loop it distributes it through a conventional duct system as warm air. Alternatively, the same heat energy can also be used for a radiant floor system or domestic water heating.

Infographic illustrating how geothermal systems workIn the cooling mode, the heating process is reversed, creating cool, conditioned air throughout the home. Instead of extracting heat from the ground, heat is extracted from the air in your home and either moved back into the earth loop or used to preheat the water in your hot water tank.

Geothermal systems eliminate high oil, gas, propane, or electricity bills, and are the most energy-efficient, cost-effective, and reliable home comfort system available. Geothermal systems also eliminate outdoor unit noise.

Smart Home and Zoning

Smart HVAC systems are excellent for helping homeowners save energy and lower bills. Zoning allows you to control temperatures from distinct thermostats on different floors or areas. With a zoned system, you can even control the airflow to individual rooms. This is helpful if you need more heat to a certain area, or if you want to avoid wasting energy in a room you’re not using.

Smart home solutions offer features such as energy tracking, filter alerts, maintenance notifications, and automatic energy savings when you’re out of the house. They also offer homeowners the opportunity to set up alerts when an issue arises with your system! With WiFi-enabled units, your smartphone or computer keeps you in control of your HVAC system, whether you’re at home, at work, or away on vacation.

image of the shore of a river in appalachian region of kentucky at sunset

Consider making the environmentally friendly HVAC choice.

If you’re soon to be in the market for a new HVAC system or system upgrade, consider making a more environmentally friendly choice! A.N. Roth Heating & Cooling is always on the leading edge of HVAC technology, and are the area experts on radiant heat, smart home technology, and geothermal systems. To learn more, contact us today!

(Sources)
Eia.gov
https://www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/sources-greenhouse-gas-emissions

image of door open to a balcony with green leaves behind it

Realizing that your air conditioner isn’t working on a hot day is unpleasant, inconvenient, and expensive. Get ahead of potential HVAC problems by using the mild spring days to make sure everything is in tip-top shape. You’ll be thankful that your air conditioner is running smoothly when summer comes around. Here are our top spring HVAC tips.

Turn Your System Off

Enjoy some fresh air! One of the best things about transition seasons is getting the chance to improve air quality in your home by turning off your HVAC system and opening the windows. Enjoy the days that you don’t need heat or air conditioning and turn on the fans to improve air circulation.

Do Some Spring Cleaning

While your windows are open, roll up your sleeves and do some spring cleaning. Clear debris from your outdoor unit. Clean the vents and make sure they’re not blocked by carpets or furniture. Have your ducts cleaned. Change your air filters. Anything you can do to keep your HVAC system free of obstructions, small and large, will improve its efficiency and prolong its lifespan.

image of someone power-washing a sidewalk next to bright flowers

Check Your Ceiling Fans

We’ve said it before; transition seasons are the perfect time to take inventory of your HVAC system and all of its components. That includes your ceiling fans. During the winter, set your fan to turn clockwise and push warm air back down. During the summer, running your ceiling fan counterclockwise pulls warm air up and pushes cool air back down. Most ceiling fans have a switch that changes the direction, helping you save big on your energy bill.

Check Your House for Leaks

Paying to cool the air in your home, only to have warm air infiltrate your house through leaks, is a colossal waste of energy and money. Help keep your home more comfortable and lower your bills by sealing up drafty windows and doors and making sure your attic is properly insulated.

Get Regular Maintenance

There are a few things you can do regularly to help keep your system running smoothly, but the number one thing you can do is have regular preventative maintenance. Having your HVAC system inspected by a professional will help catch small problems before they become big problems. It’s the best way to ensure that your system doesn’t go out unexpectedly. Having your system serviced routinely also helps your system run more efficiently, saving money on your energy bills.

For customers who want to be proactive, A.N. Roth offers our Performance Plus Service Plan. This plan provides twice-a-year preventive maintenance for your heating and cooling equipment by one of our licensed technicians. At your request, we can even customize the most appropriate and economical blend of coverage for your home or office system—from periodic inspections and thorough cleanings and repairs to full parts and labor coverage. And, if you do have a problem with your HVAC system, A.N. Roth’s Performance Plus Service Plan customers receive a 15% discount on demand service calls. If you have questions about your HVAC system, contact A.N. Roth today!

the original 1919 patent of the gas furnace

The original 1919 furnace patent from Alice H. Parker.

Today, you wouldn’t consider buying a home without central air and heating, but the construction of many homes preceded the existence of either of these relatively modern amenities. The gas furnace was first patented in 1919, and air conditioners weren’t seen in the average home until the middle of the 20th century. Throughout Louisville, hundreds of houses were built without considering the eventuality of central heating and air conditioning.

The Problem

When you’re renovating or restoring a historic home, it’s imperative to work with experts who understand the complications that can arise when you install a system that the house wasn’t built to accommodate. A.N. Roth was called in to advise on one such issue in a historic home. The owners had replaced the house’s steam boiler system with forced air and were experiencing major problems. No matter the temperature of the thermostat, the first floor of this Victorian-style home couldn’t stay over 62 degrees and the second and third floor systems were not running at all. The solution was not simply to install a larger furnace, but rather to look at the root cause of the problem: the stack effect.

tall three story victorian home in the snow

Adding a modern HVAC system to a historic home like this one can cause problems.

The Stack Effect

The stack effect (also known as the chimney effect) refers to air moving in and out of the building. During the winter, warm air rises and vents out of the top of the house, while cool air is pulled in through the basement or first floor. The opposite happens in the summer (also called the “reverse stack effect”). Heavier cold air falls as hot humid air is sucked in through the roof. Sometimes, it’s nearly impossible to cool a hot attic because of the speed at which warm air is being pulled in. (If you’re having a hard time temperature-controlling your attic, read our blog about the subject here!) Historical homes like the Victorian in question are often tall, which amplifies the stack effect.

a row of victorian homes showing third floor living spaces

Victorian homes often have a first, second, and third floor living space. The taller the home, the more the stack (chimney) effect is amplified.

Because the first floor of the home was unable to stay warm, and because the second and third floor systems were not running, we suspected the stack effect was allowing warm air to escape the upper floors as cold air was being rapidly pulled in the lower level. We believed there were substantial breaches somewhere in the thermal envelope (i.e., or the distinction between the indoors and outdoors, or the walls, foundation, roof, windows, and exterior doors).

blower door test equipment

A blower door test gently depressurizes the home to pinpoint breaches.

The Solution

To determine what kind of breach (or breaches) the homeowners were dealing with, A.N. Roth recommended that they enlist a home performance auditor to perform a blower door test. This test is often required for new construction projects to test air-tightness. A blower door is mounted in an exterior door frame, which then pulls air out of the house, depressurizing the home. The technician then measures the air flowing through the fan and calculates the amount of air leaking into the building.

In the instance of this particular project, it was determined that there were significant breaches in the thermal envelope, and air sealing was needed. Pinpointing the largest leaks from the attic to basement, professionals insulated walls, weather-stripped windows and doors, insulated recessed lighting, and more.

The Result

By investing in the blower door test and the recommended air sealing, the homeowners were able to correct their heating problem without major updates to their HVAC system and can now enjoy a cozy first floor with a consistent temperature all year round. A.N. Roth Heating & Cooling are the Louisville HVAC experts, committed to giving honest and knowledgeable advice to all of our customers. If you have a question about your HVAC system, contact us today!

Do you want to learn more? Follow us on social media to see more tips, tricks, and information about HVAC.

Over the last year, more and more people began investing in home offices. Looking for a quiet and out-of-the-way space in a busy household led many to a traditionally unoccupied room in the home: the attic.

simple attic office with two desks

An attic is a great space for a home office!

Attics make fantastic home offices if they’re properly finished. However, before you begin measuring your attic for office furniture, consider an important component of every home office: temperature. Often, even after being finished, attics are not as comfortable as the rest of the home.

No matter the size or age of your home, it’s likely that you’ve dealt with inconsistent temperatures. It’s possible to experience shifts in temperature from floor to floor, room to room, or even from one side of the room to another!

Sometimes, these temperature imbalances may not be dramatic. Other times homeowners may find certain areas of the home to be unlivable in extreme weather conditions. If you’re considering converting your attic into an office, here are a few things to think about.

Insulation

image of insulation around sky light casement window

Insulation is vital to maintaining a comfortable temperature.

Many homes are not well-insulated. Whether the insulation has broken down over time or was just poorly installed, insufficient insulation can cause huge temperature fluctuations. Obviously, lack of insulation is a tremendous waste of energy. Your HVAC system works extra hard to make up for the conditioned air escaping through your walls or roof.

In general, correcting this problem will likely help you save significantly on your energy bills, and increase your comfort levels. If you suspect insulation (or lack thereof) to be a problem in your attic, consult a professional. There are many different kinds of insulation, and an installer can help you put the right insulation in the right place.

Drafts

Professionals refer to energy loss from drafts as “infiltration”.

During the winter, warm air rises right through gaps in the top of the house. During the summer, (as cold air falls) hot and humid air gets sucked in from outside. This is why insulation (the pink fluffy stuff) is only part of the solution. Make sure you’re not losing conditioned air through drafty windows, doors, recessed lights, or attic knee walls. If you’re working with a contractor, address air sealing as well as insulating. If you’re trying to DIY, take the time to learn about air sealing materials and techniques.

Ductwork

duct work in an attic space

Ductwork should be tightly sealed, properly insulated, and the right size for the space.

In central heating and air systems, ducts carry conditioned air throughout the house. It’s vital that these ducts are properly sized, and it’s also important that they’re tight. If your ductwork is leaky, it can cause discomfort and high utility bills. If there’s a large leak or loose joint, airflow can be cut off completely from certain rooms.

Leaky ductwork in attics will not only seep conditioned air into the space, but unconditioned air can also be pulled back into the ductwork. This causes added stress to the HVAC system and can bring dust and dirt into the home. If you have ductwork running through attic space, it should be properly insulated and sealed to perform properly.

Furnace

In addition to possibly having the wrong sized ductwork, it’s also possible to have a furnace that is the wrong size for your house. If your furnace is too small, it may not be able to warm your house as effectively as you’d like. If your furnace is too large, it may heat up too quickly. This can make certain rooms uncomfortably warm, but it can also cause rooms further away from the thermostat to be cold. This is referred to as short cycling. It’s inefficient and shortens the life of your system.

If you suspect these problems, an HVAC professional can determine the correct sizing for your home.

Thermostat

Most thermostats are designed to sense the temperature in the room where they’re installed. When that room reaches the right temperature, the thermostat will shut off. If the duct system was well designed, the system should heat and cool relatively evenly. Unfortunately, many duct systems are not well designed, and many HVAC systems are oversized, resulting in uncomfortable homes.

One way to fix this problem is through zoning. Zoning allows you to control temperatures from distinct thermostats on different floors or areas. With a zoned system, you can even control the airflow to individual rooms. This is helpful if you need more heat to a certain area, or if you want to avoid wasting energy in a room you’re not using.

attic office space with blue decor

Your dream home attic office is within reach! Contact us today.

It can seem overwhelming, but temperature-controlling your home is entirely possible. Addressing the problems that cause uneven temperatures can save money and keep you comfortable all year long. A trusted professional HVAC contractor like A.N. Roth can help! Contact us today.

Did you know that nearly half of your home’s energy usage throughout the year can be attributed to heating and cooling? During the fall, energy bills may be low as you enjoy open windows and fresh, crisp air. However, it generally costs more to heat a home than it does to cool it, which means higher bills are on the horizon. That makes autumn the perfect time to take inventory of your home’s energy usage and save a little in the coming months.

autumn leaves, autumn is a great time to take inventory of your hvac

Your Home

Look around your home: there are many things you can do today to help decrease your energy consumption during the cold season!

Seal Leaks

vacuuming vents, clearing vents helps save energyDrafts around old windows and doors let cold air in, and warm air out. Use caulk to seal any small cracks around windows. If you have large gaps around operable windows or doors, try using weather stripping to ensure a tight seal.

Take Inventory of Your Vents

Make sure your vents are clean and clear! Your vents mustn’t be blocked by furniture or carpets. While you’re at it, make sure your vents are clean and not clogged by dust or pet hair. If you live in a home with a basement, try opening any closed vents in the cellar to take advantage of warm air rising. At the same time, check your ductwork for leaks to make sure you’re not inadvertently heating uninhabited spaces, like your attic!

Change the Direction of Your Ceiling Fan

ceiling fan showing that the direction of your ceiling fan can make a difference in the temperature of your homeWe all know that hot air rises. During the summer, running your ceiling fan counterclockwise pulls warm air up and pushes cool air back down. During the winter, set your fan to turn clockwise and push warm air back down. Most ceiling fans have a switch that changes the direction, helping you save big on your energy bill.

Open Your Curtains and Shades

During the summer, it’s a good idea to close window treatments to keep sunshine out. Conversely, on cool days, take advantage of the sun to warm your home! Open the blinds and curtains whenever and wherever sunbeams will shine through.

Your HVAC System

Don’t ignore your HVAC system! These tips help keep your system in great condition all year long.

Keep Up with HVAC Maintenance

One simple tip is to keep up with regular HVAC maintenance. Getting your HVAC system serviced regularly identifies small problems before they become colossal fixes. Tune-ups keep your system working at peak performance all year long, which reduces your fuel bills. A.N. Roth makes it easy with our Performance Plus Maintenance Plan. Twice-a-year services ensure your system is operating in top condition, prolong equipment life, and save you 15% on-demand service calls.

Change Your Air Filter

In addition to having your HVAC system serviced professionally, keep on top of HVAC maintenance that can be done at home. Change your air filter regularly! Keeping your air filter clean helps improve airflow and keeps your system running smoothly. If you’re not sure, check with a technician to find out what kind of filter you should use and how often you should change it.

Clean Your Outdoor HVAC Unit

dirty outdoor HVAC unit needs to be cleaned to work properlyCleaning your outdoor HVAC unit regularly is like changing the air filter on your furnace: it helps improve airflow and keeps your system running smoothly all year long. Over the summer, your outdoor HVAC unit can become caked with grass clippings, dirt, and leaves, so fall is the perfect time for a thorough cleaning.

Keep Temperatures Consistent

Driving your car on the interstate uses less fuel than driving your car through stop-and-go city traffic. The same principle applies to your HVAC system! Frequently changing the temperature on your thermostat can drive up your energy costs, so as much as possible, try to keep your system running steadily.

Program Your Thermostat

Young woman programs her thermostat to reduce fuel costsRegardless of the season, minimizing the temperature difference between the indoors and outdoors saves considerable amounts of energy. Programming your thermostat to adjust automatically when you’re asleep or at work helps ensure that the difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures stays small, while you still stay comfortable.

Autumn is a beautiful season and a time during which you probably use your HVAC system very little. That’s no reason to ignore it because chances are you’ll need it very soon. These simple tips will help ensure that your home is comfortable and healthy all winter long.

A healthy home starts with healthy air. Our recommendation is the IQAir Perfect 16 Whole House Air Purifier, for 10x cleaner air, guaranteed.