Tips for Your Home

End of Season AC Maintenance - What You Need to Know

The end of the cooling season doesn’t mean the end of AC maintenance. Before you put your air conditioner to bed for winter, a few simple maintenance tips will help ensure that it’s ready to keep you comfortable when you wake it up again next spring. Seasonal start-up is often the time when system problems occur, often because basic end of season AC maintenance was neglected months ago when th [...]


How to Keep a Lid on Energy Costs This Winter

Whether this winter is severe or something less, efforts to control energy costs will always pay off. Taking proactive control of those factors you can do something about will produce both immediate and long-term benefits. Lower monthly costs, greater indoor comfort and less wear and tear on your heating system are among them. Here are some effective ways to control energy costs this winter: Prog [...]


3 Things to Look For When Comparing Dehumidifiers

Can you maintain proper indoor humidity levels without the use of a dehumidifier? The Environmental Protection Agency recommends keeping household humidity levels below 60% for a healthy, comfortable indoor environment. It’s often a challenge to stay in that recommended range, however, particularly in climates like ours here in southern Ohio, where outdoor humidity often exceeds that limit. In t [...]


Avoid Frozen Pipes - A 3-Step Checklist

Simple steps you can take with drain pipes to avoid frozen pipes can also help prevent the repeated annoyance of a frozen drain. When freezing temperatures persist for a length of time—particularly when they are below 32 degrees Fahrenheit day and night—both water supply lines and drain pipes may freeze. Just as with any other type of drain blockage, a drain pipe that is obstructed by ice will [...]


How to Prepare a Water Heater for Winter

Because this is not the season to be stuck without hot water, take time to properly prepare your water heater for winter. The water heater’s typically the most frequently replaced major appliance in the house. Many last less than 10 years. One of the things that can help extend water heater service life is seasonal maintenance. Here are some suggestions to prepare a water heater for winter and e [...]


What Types of Weatherstripping are Best?

Weatherstripping is one of the household materials that keeps warm air inside in winter and hot air outside in summer. Usually foam, vinyl or rubber, it’s typically installed to close the gap between two moveable surfaces. Weatherstripping is usually found along the edges of a door and the door jamb to form an effective seal against air leakage when the door is closed. It’s also usually pr [...]


3 Advantages of a Ductless HVAC System

Is a ductless HVAC system a viable alternative for heating and cooling individual rooms in your home? Every day, ductless heating and cooling units are gaining market share in this country as more people decide that the answer is “Yes.” The system consists of a compact, low-profile indoor air handler incorporating a coil and blower fan mounted on the wall or ceiling of the room. This unit conn [...]


5 Energy Saving Tips for the Winter Season

Patterns of household energy consumption vary according to season, so it’s not surprising that winter has it’s own distinctive energy saving tips. Many useful energy saving tips cost you nothing, others require a small investment that will likely pay for itself after a few Ohio winters—both in added comfort and lower energy costs. Adjust the thermostat. If you’re using a programmable ther [...]


Extending the Life of Your HVAC System - Things to Avoid

Extending the life of an HVAC system is doable. So, unfortunately, is shortening its expected service life. The combined average life expectancy of an air conditioner and furnace averages about 15 years. Typically, the furnace lasts longer than the A/C. However, that 15-year estimate is based on the assumption that both systems are professionally installed, receive regular maintenance and are oper [...]


Do These 3 Critical Maintenance Items Before Firing up the Furnace

Fall maintenance is an important part of the annual furnace start-up procedure. The best alternative is to schedule seasonal preventive maintenance with a qualified HVAC contractor. This ensures your heating system receives a standard set of checks and maintenance for safety, efficiency and performance. (In many cases, annual preventive maintenance is also required by the manufacturer’s warranty [...]


3 Quick Winterizing Tips

Seasonal plumbing maintenance takes on greater importance when the season is winter. Frigid weather can be particularly hard on pipes and the consequences of neglecting plumbing maintenance at this time of year can be particularly costly. Frozen pipes not only deprive the household of water supply until they thaw, a pipe that ruptures due to freezing can discharge hundreds of gallons into your hom [...]


Preparing for Winter Storm Power Outages - What You Need to Know

Power outage statistics are getting worse as weather extremes and an aging, overburdened utility grid more frequently leave customers in the cold and dark. The numbers tell the story: weather-related power outages are practically doubling every 5 years in this country. Aside from hurricanes, winter storms were the most frequent source of widespread grid disturbances affecting more than a million p [...]


Problems that Point to Plumbing Replacement

Sometimes plumbing services in Cincinnati mean a simple fix. Other times, plumbing replacement is what’s required in a residence. Residential plumbing doesn’t come with a lifetime guarantee, unfortunately. If you keep your house long enough—or you’ve just moved into an older residence—you may notice certain signs that mean you’ll need plumbing replacement now or in the near future. Som [...]


3 Reasons to Choose a Water Treatment System

A whole-house water treatment system connected to your home plumbing system protects all the water entering your house—not just selected individual faucets. That’s because water quality is an issue that affects the entire household. While many people are concerned about the quality of water they consume, the water you bathe in and wash clothes in may also raise health concerns, as well as harm [...]


3 Signs Your Water Line Needs Help

Does your main water line need plumbing services in Cincinnati now or in the near future? Water supply lines in your home carry water under municipal pressure averaging around 50 pounds per square inch, 24/7/365. Depending on the age of the house, these pipes may be made of galvanized steel or some other material with a very finite lifespan. Once enough years have elapsed, problems begin to manife [...]


What You Need to Know about Using Power Strips

A recent news story reported two fires in New York City on the same day—one of which was fatal—linked to unsafe use of power strips. Just as the quantity of consumer electronics has skyrocketed in most homes, the use of strips is also much more common. Particularly in older residences, the number of wall outlets in each room is often insufficient to accommodate all the electricity-consuming de [...]


Preventing Drain Problems from Tree Roots

Your sewer drain system is vulnerable to invasion. Trees growing near the underground sewer line on your property send out long feeder roots in search of nutrients. Because a sewer pipe contains water and organic waste it’s a prime target for these small but powerful roots. Many older homes were built with sewer piping that is especially prone to the effects of tree root intrusion—clay pipes w [...]


Drain Clearing: When to Throw in the Towel & Call a Pro

A clogged or slow drain may require professional drain clearing and cleaning in Cincinnati — or not. What it takes to resolve common clogs differs greatly from house to house. Some will be cleared by basic DIY methods while others resist the do-it-yourself approach and require drain clearing and cleaning in Cincinnati. What are the factors that make the difference? The Clogged Trap If debris was [...]


Choosing the Right Garbage Disposal: Features & Benefits

The average garbage disposal is a sturdy beast and typically lasts at least 10 years before it needs replacement. So if you’re shopping for a new one now, it’s probably been some time since you’ve been up-to-date on the subject of garbage disposal technology. Features and benefits have changed quite a bit during that time and you have more choices to make. Here’s how to sort out what’s o [...]


Choosing the Right Temps to Set Your Programmable Thermostat

Knowing how to set your programmable thermostat means making seasonal adjustments at the appropriate times every year. Cold weather, shorter days and longer nights, as well as the different patterns of household occupation during winter, call for changes to programmed temperatures. System energy efficiency and monthly operating costs—as well as indoor comfort and convenience—all improve when [...]