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Winter Home Comfort Tips from Air Conditioning Systems

Winter in Concord can get downright cold. Though you might opt to cuddle up with a loved one or put on an extra sweater, it can still be hard to get comfortable when the temperatures outside start to drop.

The good news is that there are effective ways to stay comfortable during the winter that don’t have to cost an arm and a leg. In fact, the team at ACS Air Conditioning Systems has written about these strategies for maintaining home comfort before. To save you the time and hassle of digging deep into our blog archives to find these words of wisdom, we’ve brought them straight to you in our easy to use guide to winter home comfort below.

Our Winter Home Comfort Guide for Concord Homeowners

As the home comfort experts, we know just what it takes to keep Concord homeowners comfortable. Check out our informative resources below for expert tips on how to get and stay comfortable this winter:

Benefits of Controlling Indoor Air Quality

It can be hard to get comfortable knowing that the air inside your home might be harmful for you and your family to breathe in. This article discusses the overall benefits of monitoring your indoor air quality and taking steps to improve it. If you think that just changing your air filter every once in awhile is enough to keep the air inside your home healthy, you may want to read this as it will surprise you.

Got Allergies? Change Up Your Indoor Air Quality to Feel Better

Changes in the weather can cause your allergies to start acting up, especially in the winter time. If you or someone in your home suffers from allergies or asthma then you’ll want to find out how you can help them breathe easier with the tips in this article. Be sure to share this with someone you know who has allergies or other respiratory problems.

Benefits of Using Programmable Thermostats

Despite your best efforts, you may find it difficult to maintain a comfortable temperature without driving your energy bills through the roof. Programmable thermostats make it easier to cut utility costs in the winter as they allow you to adjust the temperature to save energy while you’re away. If you’ve ever considered purchasing a programmable or smart thermostat, you’ll want to read this.

Planning a Furnace Replacement? 3 Things to Think About First

Just can’t seem to get comfortable with that old furnace? Before you buy a replacement, you’ll want to carefully consider what you need in a new heating system and what your options are. This article goes into a little more detail about 3 things you’ll need to think about before buying and installing a new furnace. This is a must-read for anyone that plans to replace their furnace in the near future.

Want to learn more about HVAC, home improvement, indoor air quality, and much more? Be sure to check back on our blog each month for informative content that will help you keep your Concord home comfortable. To connect with us or stay up-to-date with updates from Air Conditioning Systems, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

How to Save on Energy Costs When Hosting Guests this Holiday Season

If you’ve ever hosted guests in your home for an extended period of time then you know that this can start to take a toll on your energy bills. With the holiday season in full swing, many homeowners have plans to host guests over a long holiday weekend or even just have friends and family over for dinner or a party. Below, we’ll offer some energy-saving tips that you can use to cut down on energy costs while you’re having fun with your loved ones.

Energy-Saving Tips for Hosting Holiday Guests

Whether you have guests staying in your home for the holidays or you plan on having a dinner party, the holiday season can be a time of high energy usage. Use the tips below to save on energy costs during the holidays.

Adjust the temperature and lighting once your guests arrive.

If you are hosting a party or having loved ones over for dinner, you can adjust the temperature and lighting to save more energy during the festivities. More bodies in the room means more heat. Not to mention, your home starts to heat up if you have been cooking all day. This is the perfect time to adjust your thermostat and save some energy. Once guests start to arrive, turn the thermostat down a bit to take advantage of the energy savings.

You can also adjust the lighting in your home to save energy when entertaining guests. If you have the holiday lights on, consider turning off other lights in your home that are not being used to better enjoy the holiday decorations. You may also opt for candles or other, more energy-efficient lighting that will help you save more energy while hosting guests.

Cook more efficiently.

If you are planning on making dinner for your guests, you can save energy by trying to cook more efficiently. Here are just a few ways that you can save energy while preparing holiday meals:

  • Don’t open the oven door to look at what’s baking inside as this lowers the temperature inside, which can increase cook times and waste energy. If you have to look, turn on the oven light and check through the window.
  • Try to cook several items at the same time. This cuts down on the amount of time that you need to have your oven on throughout the day, helping you save energy.
  • Clean your burners and reflectors before you start cooking. This provides better heating which can save energy and cut down energy costs.
  • Use other, more energy efficient appliances when possible. Don’t forget your microwave. This appliance not only cooks quickly, but it also uses about 50% less energy than the conventional oven, so utilize it when you can.

Need to make sure that your HVAC system is working efficiently before your guests arrive? Call the HVAC experts at Air Conditioning Systems for an annual maintenance visit to make sure you all will stay comfortable this holiday season: (925) 270-1613.

How Air Conditioning Negatively Impacts Our Health

It’s no secret that most of us love our air conditioning, but that doesn’t mean these systems are without issue. In fact, there are several problems that have been linked with climate-controlled environments.

The Top 5 Health Issues Caused by Air Conditioning

Consider these five crucial issues that can have negative consequences on your day-to-day health.

  • Fatigue and Illness

Feeling cold can leave you feeling drained. Employees who work in heavily air-conditioned areas are prone to headaches and fatigue. That’s because approximately 80% of our energy goes to our BMR, or basal metabolic rate. This number is a measurement of the calories it takes to maintain body temperature and other bodily functions. The colder you are, the harder your body works to keep your systems running, which can lead to feeling exhausted.

Solution: Adjust the thermostat, if you can. It may feel silly to bring a sweater to the office on an 80-degree day, but if you can’t control the thermostat, bundling up while you are there can keep your temperature at a more normal level. Drinking a hot beverage, such as coffee or tea, can help, too.

  • Dry and Irritated Skin

One reason we love the A/C is because it removes the humidity from the air, but that also means our skin is exposed to less moisture. Spending hours in the air conditioning can cause widespread irritation and flaking, especially in people who already have dry skin.

Solution: Use lotion whenever possible, particularly on problem areas. Consider using a moisturizing body wash, as well, if you spend a significant portion of time in an air-conditioned area. And, for most issues, staying properly hydrated can be extremely beneficial.

  • Enhanced Symptoms of Chronic Illnesses

Spending time in overly air-conditioned environments can be especially taxing for those with chronic illnesses. Many painful symptoms are exacerbated by the cold. Arthritis sufferers, for example, may have more difficulty moving affected joints. This stiffness causes higher levels of discomfort and can make it more difficult to complete everyday tasks. Low blood pressure and neuritis are two other conditions aggravated by cold temperatures.

Solution: Look for warmer areas of the office to do your work, perhaps near windows which would offer more exposure to sun. Try silk undergarments; they offer a layer of warmth without bulk.  

Solution: Keep your AC consistent but not extremely cold. Try to temper yourself into warmer situations whenever possible.

  • Breathing Problems

The blowing air from air conditioners circulate germs and other microorganisms. This kind of contamination can lead to the spread of disease, particularly in office buildings. The constant presence of cold air also may irritate the mucous membrane and cause physical issues with breathing, too.

Solution: Change filters frequently, especially whenever someone has been sick. Keep your environment as clean as possible and have the system serviced regularly to prevent mold.

There are some definite concerns when using an AC system, but common sense and diligence can help you enjoy years of safe climate control. If you need help improving your indoor air quality, contact us today to discuss your IAQ options.