Category : energy saver

12 Ways to Save Electricity

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At Oliver, we know how important the environment is and how many people are working hard to reduce their carbon footprint. That’s why we put together a list of 12 tips on how to save electricity (and in return, save money):

1. Block/use the sun

In the summer, direct sunlight on your house makes it warmer, which means your air conditioner will need to work harder to cool it. Use your blinds and invest in thick curtains to block sunlight out during the day. In the winter, open your blinds or curtains to let the sun warm up your house.

2. Unplug your appliances

Even when you’re not using them, appliances that are plugged in can still use electricity. The best thing to do is unplug any appliances that you’re not using.

3. Don’t overpay for utilities

In Pennsylvania and many other states, you can choose your own electric provider, so shop around for the one with the best rates. You may be able to save more than you think.

4. Use/install ceiling fans

Ceiling fans make you feel nearly four degrees cooler in the summer and can push warm air downward in the winter to make you feel warmer. This means you won’t have to run your heater or air conditioner as often, which saves electricity.

5. Put lamps in the corner

When you put your lamps in the corner, their light will be reflected off of two walls instead of just one, which makes the room brighter and lessens the amount of lamps you need.

6. Keep your home warmer/cooler

In the winter, lower your thermostat a few degrees and you’ll save money on your energy bills. In the summer, turn it up a little.

7. Hang your clothes to dry

Instead of wasting energy using your dryer, hang your clothes to dry on a clothing rack or outside on a clothing line.

8. Switch light bulbs

Switch out your incandescent light bulbs to ones that are energy efficient. These days, bulbs like LEDs, CFLs, and halogens all use less energy than traditional fluorescent ones and also last longer.

9. Ditch the oven

Instead of a traditional oven, use a microwave or toaster oven to heat up your leftovers. You’ll use a lot less electricity.

10. Fill your freezer

Freezers work more efficiently when they’re full, so try to keep your freezer fully stocked. You can even put frozen containers of water in there just to fill it up.

11. Service your HVAC unit

Each year, have a professional (like our HVAC maintenance specialists!) inspect your HVAC unit and make sure that it’s running efficiently. If it’s not, you could be wasting energy.

12. Run full loads

Like freezers, dish washing machines and clothes washing machines both are more efficient when full, so make sure you fill them both before you run them through a cleaning cycle.


Do You Qualify for an Energy Efficient Tax Credit?

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Yes, it’s tax season again and we know you all love doing your taxes. That’s why our HVAC contractor is here – to help you save even more with energy efficient tax credits.

According to the IRS, you can receive a tax credit if you have an energy-efficient home. If you made an improvement to your home last year, you may qualify for the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit or the Non-Business Energy Efficient Property Credit.

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8 Things That Are Transforming the Future of HVAC

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As the world becomes more and more advanced, new designs and ideas are emerging to make HVAC an efficient, easily accessible part of our lives. Here, our HVAC company shares eight of the latest developments that are transforming the heating and cooling world:

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6 HVAC New Year’s Resolutions

Every year, more than 40% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions. While yours may have to do with losing weight or getting more organized, our HVAC service experts encourage you to add just one more – for your home’s sake.

Schedule Annual Maintenance

No matter how old your HVAC system is, an annual maintenance check-up can keep it running smoothly and extend its lifespan. Do yourself (and your unit) a favor and have our HVAC service contractors take care of it.

Adjust Your Thermostat

Lowering your thermostat a couple degrees during the winter months and upping it a couple degrees during the summer months will not only help you use less energy, but will also help you save some money on your energy bills.

Change Your Filters

On average, your HVAC filter should be changed every three months. (If you smoke or have pets, however, it should be changed more often.) Changing your filter will keep your air clean and your HVAC unit running efficiently.

Go Programmable

If you don’t already have a programmable thermostat, consider investing in one. You’ll be able to set it so that you only use your heat or air conditioning when you’re home and reduce your use while you’re out of the house. This will mean less used energy, which means lower bills.

Take Precautions

If you think something is wrong with your HVAC unit, vents, or ducts, don’t hesitate to give our friendly HVAC service staff a call. We’d be happy to assess your situation and help take care of it – and you’ll be able to sit back and relax.

Schedule a Duct Cleaning

While your HVAC unit does most of the work to heat or cool your home, don’t forget that your air ducts are part of the picture. Dirty air ducts mean dirty air, which you don’t want to be breathing. They also mean a decrease in HVAC efficiency. Schedule an air duct cleaning to keep your family healthy and HVAC unit happy.


Why a Humidifier Is Beneficial in Cold Weather

heating and cooling contractors

Winter is in full force and to help combat its effects, our heating and cooling contractors suggest investing in a humidifier for your home.  A humidifier can not only improve your overall comfort, but it can also:

Cure dry skin.

Does it ever seem that no matter how many times you moisturize your skin, it just won’t stay moisturized? That’s all thanks to the dry, cold temperatures of winter. With a humidifier, however, the air in your home will stay moist and your skin won’t dry out as easily (which includes those chapped lips).

Make you feel warmer.

When there is moisture in the air, it feels warmer to your body (which is why a humid summer day feels much hotter than a dry summer day). By investing in a humidifier, you’ll not only feel warmer, but you’ll save money on your energy bills because you won’t have to use or turn up your heat as much.

Stop snoring.

Even though snoring is caused by obstructed airways, a humidifier can help moisturize those airways and the overall respiratory system to lessen the loudness and intensity of your snoring.

Prevent and shorten illnesses.

The small hairs in your nose are meant to trap harmful viruses and bacteria so that you don’t get sick. When the air you breathe is dry, the hairs in your nose can’t produce mucous and as a result, they won’t be able to trap particles. Adding moisture to the air can not only prevent you from becoming ill, but it can also shorten the length of your illness by soothing your symptoms.

Control static electricity.

You know it’s winter again when all of your clothes start sticking together or nearly everything you touch gives you a jolt. The drier the environment, the more chance for static electricity; invest in a humidifier and you won’t see as much of it.

Reduce sinus/asthma discomfort.

Aching sinuses, allergies, and asthma can be aggravating – especially in the winter. Add moisture to your air, however, and you’ll notice that your discomfort will be greatly reduced.


7 Ways to Save Energy During Thanksgiving Dinner

It’s that time of year, which means it’s time to fire up the oven, turn on the burners, and get to cooking that Thanksgiving dinner. It also means that you’ll be using a lot of energy to cook your meal. Follow these easy tips from our HVAC service experts to reduce your energy consumption while you make your delicious family dinner:

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5 Benefits of a New Commercial HVAC System

Owning and/or running a commercial property is a lot of work, and the last thing you want to worry about is your HVAC system. If yours is old, outdated, or simply not working properly, talk to the experts at Oliver. We can help you choose a new HVAC installation that fits the size of your building and the size of your budget.

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5 Benefits of Commercial Duct Cleaning

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People spend about 90% of their time indoors, which means clean air is a must. At Oliver, we provide residential duct cleaning to keep you and your family healthy, but we also provide commercial duct cleaning. Here’s how it can help your wallet, your building, and its occupants:

Airborne particle reduction

Indoor air can be up to 70 times more polluted than outdoor air, which means the occupants in your commercial building can be inhaling dust, dirt, mildew, pollen, smoke, fungi, and more on a day-to-day basis. A commercial duct cleaning can remove these particles and give your building cleaner air.

Improved productivity

Whether your commercial building is an office, a school, a hospital, a factory, or any other structure, clean air improves the productivity of the people inside. Students and faculty alike can focus and work harder when their environment is clean and air is easy to breathe.

Fewer sick days

When your air ducts are dirty, they can spread bacteria that cause sicknesses. As a commercial business, you want all of your employees to be healthy and working hard, and a duct cleaning can reduce the number of sick days that workers take.

Reduced energy costs

Just one millimeter of dust and dirt build-up can reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system by 21% (according to the EPA). Keeping your system clean can help maintain its efficiency and in return, can lower your energy bills.

Longer equipment life

When dirt, allergens, dust, and other particles build up, they can clog your HVAC system and cause it to fail. Regular duct cleanings can keep your equipment in top shape and running for years to come.

Interested in a commercial duct cleaning? Just leave it to the experts at Oliver! Our equipment is 99.97% efficient in removing microbial contaminants.


Air Conditioning and Road Trips

What to Know About Both

At Oliver Heating and Cooling, we’re already thinking about summer vacation plans, and we know you are too. If you’re thinking about taking a road trip, you can save money by knowing when to use your air conditioning and when not to use it.

Car Air Conditioning

Car air conditioners and rolled-down windows can both help you save money while you drive – you just have to know when to use which cooling method. If your road trip consists of highway driving (we’re assuming it does), keep your windows rolled up and your air conditioner on when you’re going above 50 miles per hour. Traveling with your windows down at high speeds will actually reduce the efficiency of your vehicle (by up to 20%), which means you’ll use more gas to maintain your highway speed.

On the other hand, if you’re driving around town (or under 50 miles per hour), opt to roll down your windows instead of use your air conditioning. Because there’s less wind force than when traveling at higher speeds, you won’t decrease your vehicle’s efficiency, and if you do use your air conditioner, you’ll be using more fuel to run it.

As a general note, if you get into your parked car and it’s hot, you may be tempted to cool it down with the air conditioning. If you do this, roll down your windows to let some of the heat out – the car will cool off quicker.

Home Air Conditioning

Summer road trips also mean time away from your home, and you may be wondering whether you should turn your air conditioning off or simply turn it down. The truth is, it doesn’t hurt to turn your air conditioning off – in fact, you’ll save a lot more money than if you keep it at a higher temperature.

In addition, air conditioners actually run more efficiently when they’re running at full power, which means they’re more efficient when cooling a room down from 80 to 75 than when they’re working in short spurts to keep the room at a constant 80 degrees. We know that during winter months, it’s important to keep your home warm to avoid freezing your pipes, but in the summer months, it’s perfectly safe to turn off your air conditioning.

If you’re having trouble with your air conditioner, call our air conditioning repair company before you leave and we’ll have it fixed for you as soon as possible.