Room to Breathe

Air conditioners need room to take in and exhaust air and should have at least 18 inches of clearance from furniture, plants, and drapes. If the air cannot circulate around the unit, heat may build up and cause damage to the coils.
Read More

Humidity Control

To deter mold, keep indoor humidity low. If possible, keep indoor humidity below 60 percent (ideally between 30 and 50 percent) relative humidity. Relative humidity can be measured with a moisture or humidity meter, a small, inexpensive ($10-$50) instrument available at many hardware stores.
Read More

Chimney Damage

Following a violent storm, earthquake, flood or lightning strike, have your chimney inspected for damage, inside and out. This includes checking for cracks and fallen bricks.
Read More

Duct Loss

Have your duct system tested for air leaks. Many think that windows and doors are the major cause of a home's air leaks. But according to recent research by the Department of Energy, gaps, cracks and disconnections in the typical home's duct system are much more significant. The DOE states that the typical duct system loses 25 to 40 percent of the energy put out by the central furnace, heat or air conditioner. Leaks are usually the biggest problem.
Read More

Radon Test Device Placement

Radon testing device(s) should be placed in the lowest level of the home suitable for occupancy. This means testing in the lowest level (such as a basement), which a buyer could use for living space without renovations. The test should be conducted in a room to be used regularly (like a family room, living room, playroom, den or bedroom); do not test in a kitchen, bathroom, laundry room or hallway. Usually, the buyer decides where to locate the radon test, based on their expected use of the home. A buyer and seller should explicitly discuss and agree on the test location to avoid any misunderstanding. Their decision should be clearly communicated to the person performing the test.
Read More

Flood Prep – HVAC

Keep these points in mind when you have your HVAC equipment raised or floodproofed:

a) Changes to the plumbing, electrical system, and ventilating ductwork in your house must be done by a licensed contractor, who will ensure that the work is done correctly and according to all applicable codes. This is important for your safety.

b) If you are having your existing furnace or hot water heater repaired or replaced, consider having it relocated at the same time. It will probably be cheaper to combine these projects than to carry them out at different times.

c) Similarly, if you have decided to raise your HVAC equipment, consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient unit at the same time. Upgrading can not only save you money on your heating and cooling bills, it may also make you eligible for a rebate from your utility companies.

d) if you decide to protect your HVAC equipment with a floodwall, remember that you will need enough space in the enclosed area for system repairs and routine maintenance. Also, depend-ing on its height, the wall may have to be equipped with an opening that provides access to the enclosed area. Any opening will have to be equipped with a gate that can be closed to prevent flood waters from entering.
Read More

Reduce Creosote

To help reduce creosote during wood burning, burn only well-seasoned hardwoods. If you don't know how to build a hot, safe fire, ask your chimney sweep for tips on proper wood burning.
Read More