February is National Heart Awareness Month. What better time to ponder all the things that affect the health of your heart? You’re probably well aware of how diet and exercise contribute to keeping your heart healthy, but do you ever consider the effects of your indoor air quality on your health?
The sad fact is that the air in our homes is much more polluted than the outside air. That can have an impact on your heart, as well as your lungs and kidneys. Read on for what you should know about IAQ effects on your health.
Airborne Pollutants in Your Home
A number of airborne pollutants may be found in the typical, airtight home:
Dust Smoke Pollen Pet dander Radon Carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide Mold Volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
These substances have different impacts on the body, but all in large concentrations can make you sick — at the least, triggering sniffles and other signs of respiratory distress, as well as allergies and asthma symptoms, and even organ failure.
Controlling Airborne Pollutants
Here are some things you can to control airborne pollutants:
February 2nd is Groundhog Day, when Punxsutawney Phil traditionally comes out of hibernation and tells us whether spring will soon arrive, or cold weather will persist and extend the winter heating season. This annual event has been widely celebrated across the country since 1886, but does it really have a correlation to your home’s HVAC?
How Groundhog Day Relates to Your HVAC System
According to Groundhog Day lore, if the sun is out when furry Phil emerges from his burrow, he’ll see his shadow and retreat back inside, and we’ll have six more weeks of winter. If the sky is overcast and the chubby rodent isn’t scared by his own shadow, he’ll stay outside which means that spring is on its way. Whether or not you believe a nervous groundhog makes a good meteorologist, a shorter or longer winter can impact your home comfort, well-being and monthly expenses in predictable ways:
Seasonal energy bills. When Phil accurately foretells an additional six weeks of cold temperatures, you’ll end up spending more on gas or electricity to keep your home warm. If the weather turns mild instead, you may benefit from lower utility bills for a longer period before the heat of …
If you’ve recently purchased a home that has a boiler, you may not be familiar with this kind of heating system. Boilers heat water using gas or electricity, then pump the hot water through piping to radiators in each room, or circulate it through tubing installed under the floors. For the well-being of your family, you should ensure boiler safety by following these steps:
Have the Heating System Maintained Annually
A boiler is just like a gas furnace or heat pump in one regard – it needs regular preventive care from a qualified HVAC pro to operate safely. When you schedule an annual system inspection, cleaning and tuneup, a technician will complete a number of safety-centric tasks, including:
Verifying correct water pressure, temperature and flow. Checking the water level and testing the low-water fuel cut-off. Inspecting the pressure tank and testing the pressure relief valve. Verifying proper pump, zone valve, and damper operation. Checking for corrosion and cracks in the heat exchanger. Inspecting and cleaning the burner. Cleaning the pilot assembly and orifice, and inspecting the flame sensor. Checking for leaks and the condition of the seals. Lubricating all the system motors. Inspecting the venting system. Checking the wiring and …
Inefficient windows may be all that’s keeping you between staying comfortable this winter and achieving low energy bills. Although it’s a small investment of time and money, adding window insulation might be the key to a draft-free home and reasonable heating accosts.
As important as they are, windows are often the least efficient component of homes. Glass has practically no insulation value and air leaks in windows are common. Making your windows more efficient is a two-step process to stop the leaks and slow the loss of heat through the glass.
Seal the Leaks
A professional energy audit is the most accurate way to find where the leaks around the windows are. The auditors use a high-powered fan to pull the air from your home and test the temperatures with infrared cameras to find the location of the leaks and their sizes. Once you’ve identified their locations, you can seal most leaks with acrylic caulk around the frames and silicone caulk around the panes.
The differences between forced-air furnaces and boilers, or radiant heating, are numerous. As far as heating options for your home go, Peachtree City is on the southern edge of places where both are viable choices. Which you choose depends on the type of heat you like and your physical preferences.
Radiant heating is slow and steady, while forced-air furnaces, including heat pumps, warm your air quickly and cool off just as fast. Eventually, a home with forced-air will warm to the point where temperatures are warm all over, but the furnace has to cycle on and off numerous times.
By comparison, a boiler runs continuously until the temperature reaches the thermostat’s settings. The heat radiates from wherever the pipes or tubes are that the boiler feeds. They can be in the floor beneath the carpet or tiles, snaked through baseboard heaters, or as radiators that sit in a room. Each room has a turn-off valve, so if you don’t want it heated, just turn off the heat.