| Stan's Greener Savings Blog |
Saturday, 31 March 2018
The good news is that the arrival of the worst of this Spring's allergy season has been late in the the MidAtlantic this season with a lingering cold and wet early Spring. However, when warmer temperatues do arrive, pollen counts are expected to be particularly high this season.
Here are a few tips to bring relief to the allergy sufferers in your family:
- Control your home's humidity and with it some of the most virulent allergens:
Mold & Mildew. Although generally confined to damp areas like basements, crawl spaces and bathrooms, their spores are dispersed in the air and can infect your entire home.
Dust mites. These microscopic creepy-crawlies thrive in high humidity. They live in mattresses, upholstery, carpets and other home fabrics. Their waste products and dead body parts are among the most irritating triggers to allergy and asthma.
Frequent vacuuming; weekly washing of bed linens and mattress covers in hot water; and replacement of heavy drapery, rugs and carpets with hard surface window treatments and flooring will control dust mites, but by far the best solution is to control your home's humidity. Where humidity is kept below 50%, these creatures dessicate and die.
Stan has high humidity solutions including advanced air conditioners and heat pumps with built-in humidity controls as well as professional dehumidifiers that can either operate as stand-alones or be incorporated into your home comfort system. These offer triple the performance of standard dehumidifiers with less than two-thirds the operating cost.
- Keep doors and windows closed even on the most inviting spring day. Rather let your air conditioner continue to run even when temperatures are moderate. Nothing is more natural than the desire to throw open windows after a long cold winter. But for the allergy sufferers in your life, this just means more red noses, scratchy throats, wheezing and labored breathing. Keeping your air conditioner running will circulate your home's air through its air filter. With the spring's moderate temps, the cost will not be burdensome.
Those with high efficiency systems have the added advantage of a two-speed compressor and variable speed blower. In spring, these systems run at lower more energy-efficient speeds. And because of the efficiency of their DC powered blowers, fan can be set to run continually even when the compressor is not cooling for maximum air circulation and filtration.
ALWAYS CHECK YOUR FILTER EACH MONTH AND CHANGE IT WHEN DIRTY. This will not only keep your homes air clean, but it keep your system running efficiently. If you have not done so already, sign up for Stan's FREE monthly reminders.
- Consider upgrading your air filter. This is NEVER SOMETHING YOU SHOULD DO YOURSELF! The "high efficiency" filters sold in home centers and hardware stores WILL obstruct the airflow so critical to your comfort and to your system's energy-efficiency. The consequences are grave including damage to expensive compressors and fan motors.
Stan has solutions designed to have minimal impact on airflow. These include 95% efficient media filters and the revolutionaryAccuCleanTM which captures 99.98% of allergens including dust, pollen, pet dander, dust mite allergens, mold spores, cooking grease, and tobacco smoke as well as the activTek activTekTM air purifier.
- Keep pets away from allergy sufferers. As much as you love them, pets bring in plenty of outdoor allergens -- especially this time of year. Their dander is also an irritant. Obviously the best solution is to keep them out doors, but if that's not possible, you should maintain at least one pet-free room (preferably a bedroom) where your allergy sufferer can find relief.
- Change clothes and shower when you come in from outdoor activities. This time of year, even a short walk or time spent in the yard can cover you with allergens. These can then be tracked through the home and deposited on furniture.
These are just a few tips from your friends at Stan Perkoski's home services. To learn more, schedule a No-Pressure No-Obligation Consultation with your Stan Perkoski's professional.
Monday, 05 March 2018
Every Stan Perkoski's Quotation is Given by
a Qualified Technician, NEVER a Pushy Salesman!
"Nearly half of all heating and cooling equipment in the U.S. never performs to its advertised capacity due to incorrect installation."
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) at energysaver.com
". . . a high efficiency air conditioner . . . may waste significantly more energy than a properly installed lower-efficiency unit."
Joint report of Air Conditioning
Contractors of America (ACCA),
the NY State Energy Research Development Authority, and the Consortium for Energy Efficiency.
When Stan says he's committed to no sales pressure, he really means it. Unlike other Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania heating/cooling and plumbing companies, every Stan Perkoski's quotation is given by a qualified technician not a salesman.
Why is this important? The principal training our industry's sales people receive is in sales techniques. As a result, most of the people designing and estimating heating, cooling, water heating and plumbing systems have minimal technical knowledge. Yet the decisions they make will determine your family's comfort and a very big chunk of your annual household expenses for the next 10 to 20 years.
That lack of knowledge may have a lot to do with the U.S. Department of Energy's assessment of the dismal state of home heating and air conditioning efficiency in the United States.
|No Pressure / No Games/ No Surprises / No Fooling!
When the person designing and recommending your new system is a salesperson, you never know what's behind his recommendations. Is the system he recommends the best for you or the best for his commission? Is he up-selling you on a more expensive system than you need? Is the price you're quoted really the best, or might it be lower if only you were a more skilled negotiator?
With Stan Perkoski's, you always know where you stand. Your technician asks detailed questions, takes measurements and thoroughly examines your home and your system. His recommendations come from specific calculations according to the best standards of our industry. He'll explain all this to you, and he'll give you CHOICES so that you can make the best decision for your comfort goals and for your budget.
Then he'll show you a published flat-rate price book. Except for a previously advertised special, he will NEVER DEVIATE from this price. Everyone pays the same fair price. The price you're quoted is exactly the price you'll pay. We don't charge for labor and materials. We don't estimate and then turn around and bill you more than the original quote because we miscalculated. You get the right price UP FRONT before work starts. And that will be the price you pay!
Read Stan's Exclusive No-Pressure Sales Pledge. Every Stan Perkoski's Home Services team member has signed it and is pledge to abide by its promises.
Wednesday, 14 February 2018
Changing dirty air filters will:
- Prevent costly breakdowns.
- Maximize your family's comfort.
- Keep your utility bills under control.
- Minimize dust and & pollen that plague allergy sufferers.
- Protect your system from expensive damage and premature failure.
Inspect yours each month and change when dirty. This is especially important during those early spring and late summer months when pollen counts are high.
Of course, the best way to insure your comfort and your equipment's long life and efficiency is with Stan's annual precision maintenance service.
Schedule now, and we'll check that filter for you.
Serving New Castle County Delaware; Chester and Delaware Counties, Pennsylvania; Cecil, Kent and Queen Annes's Counties, Maryland
Saturday, 03 February 2018
One of the most frequent winter heating complaints we hear is of room temperature swings. One minute a room feels too cold; the next it's too hot. This often results in "thermostat juggling" which while NEVER solving the problem ALWAYS WASTES ENERGY.
Here are two steps you can take to improve your family's comfort and your home's energy efficiency:
- During the colder months, set your ceiling fans to run counter clockwise. Then run them on the slowest speed when you're in that room. This will keep warm air from pooling on the ceiling and keep it circulating.
- If yours is a high-efficiency system with a variable speed blower, set the fan to run continuously. This will improve circulation and keep temperatures stable. Unlike standard speed blowers, these run slowly and ramp up gradually as needed. Their DC motors consume a small fraction of the energy consumed by standard blower motors. The result: less noise, more consistent heat and more energy savings because you're less likely to fiddle with that thermostat.
Don't have a system with variable speed but interested in learning what higher efficiency can mean to your family's comfort and budget? Schedule a no-cost no-pressure no-obligation consultation today.
Saturday, 03 February 2018
Our bodies are self-regulating systems. More critical to your comfort than room temperature is how your body regulates its own temperature. That's why your summer comfort depends on "conditioned air" -- air that is not only cooled but more importantly de-humidified. The drier the air, the higher the rate of moisture's evaporation from your skin and thus the more your body cools.
For comfort in winter, relative humidity is just as important. The heat produced by your furnace or heat pump is extremely dry. By adding humidity, you slow the body's cooling process thus increasing comfort.
With proper humidity, you'll feel comfortable at lower thermostat settings. And for every degree you lower the thermostat, you will consume about 5% less energy. With proper humidification, most homeowners can save 20% to 30% on heating costs during the coldest days and nights of winter.
Other benefits of whole-home humidification include:
- Elimination of annoying static electricity,
- Longer life for fine furniture, fabrics and artwork, and
- A healthier family less susceptible to winter colds and flu.
Today's humidifiers no longer rely on the standing water that caused mold and mildew problems in the past. Learn more now. Schedule a no-cost no-pressure no-obligation consultation today.
Friday, 03 February 2017
Because carbon monoxide (CO) is the leading cause of poisoning death in the U.S., we've added a precision air check to every visit we make. Whether we're in your home for a plumbing or heating/cooling service, we'll perform this life-saving test.
Even if you have CO detectors in your home, you should have a professional test with precision instruments performed at least once a year. Unfortunately, the standard detectors sold in hardware stores and home centers only detect lethal levels of CO. Our instruments are five times more sensitive.
Such low level detections enable us to identify a problem before it becomes life-threatening. Even low level exposures have been linked to debilitating respiratory conditions. Older and younger family members are most vulnerable. Because symptoms are so similar to those of colds and flu, they are often misdiagnosed by medical professions.
If you have not yet scheduled annual maintenance for your heating system, call us at 866-PERKOSKI (866-737-5675) or schedule online.
Tuesday, 01 November 2016
“Is My Air Conditioner Causing Global Warming?”
You may well be wondering with the recent announcement of an international agreement to phase out HFCs*, the most common refrigerant used by the air conditioning industry (USA Today, Money, Oct. 15, 2017). HFCs previously replaced the ozone-depleting CFCs** as mandated by earlier international agreement, the 1989 Montreal Protocols. While not damaging the ozone layer, these newer refrigerants have since been found to trap thousands of times as much heat in the atmosphere as carbon dioxide. Hence the new mandate.
*HFCs – hydro-fluorocarbons (R-410A refrigerant).
**CFCs – chlorofluorocarbons (R22 refrigerant).
Here’s the good news:
- As reported by USA Today, your air conditioner (or heat pump) WON’T release HVCs into the atmosphere if it is working properly. Likewise if your old unit is disposed of properly by an U.S. EPA certified technician, it will not release these harmful gases.
- Unlike the fossil fuel industry which is dragging its feet on addressing climate change, our industry is hard at work perfecting systems using alternative refrigerants that do not harm the Earth’s atmosphere.
What you can do now:
- The only way to insure that your AC or heat pump is operating working properly is to have it maintained annually by your Stan Perkoski’s professional.Annual maintenance not only assures that your unit is operating safely but also that it is operating at its maximum performance and energy-efficiency.
Additional benefits of Stan’s Perpetual Care Club membership include:
- Priority scheduling. If your AC or heating system breaks down, members go to the head of the line.
- 11.5% discount on all repairs (parts & labor).
- Stan’s exclusive LIFETIME WARRANTY on all parts and labor as long as your system continues to be covered by the plan.
- 100% money-back guarantee. If you’re heater or AC fails any time in the season following its maintenance service, we’ll refund 100% of the cost of that maintenance service or credit it toward the repair.
- Stan’s exclusive carbon monoxide safety checks (fuel-burning heaters and water heaters).
- Stan’s exclusive annual water heater anode rod inspection – for flood protecting and extended life. Timely replacements can as much as double the life of your water heater!
- A $250 gift card to be used toward any non-emergency heating/cooling replacement.
- A $100 gift card to be used toward any non-emergency water heater replacement.
- When it comes time to replace your old system, be sure to have it done by your U.S. EPA certified Stan Perkoski’s Home Services professionals.
Tuesday, 13 September 2016
Today, Memphis, Tennessee suffered the deadliest house fire since the 1920s. Nine family members, include six children, have lost their lives. Another child is fighting for it's life. The cause of the fire: a malfunction of an air conditioner's power cord.
I can't emphasize enough the importance of annual maintenance of your heating and cooling equipment for your Delaware, Eastern Shore of Maryland or southeastern Pennsylvania home. It's not only critical to your comfort and efficient operation of your equipment, it can literally save lives. Poorly maintained equipment is not only a fire risk, but also a source of deadly carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. Even low doses of carbon monoxide can make family members ill. Such symptoms are often mistaken for winter cold or flu symptoms.
Schedule your HVAC maintenance service today.
Sunday, 31 July 2016
Most Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania homeowners don't realize when their water heater is ready to fail. But waiting too long to replace it can result in disastrous and expensive flood damage to your home and possessions.
Here are five signs to look for to prevent an imminent water heater disaster.
- Its age. The typical lifespan of a water heater serving a family of four is about seven to ten years. The more you use it, the shorter its life. If you're not certain of its age, check your water heater's serial number. It should include the year the unit was manufactured. If you're not sure, call us with the brand and serial number, and we'll help you determine its age.
- The consistency of heating. If you are experiencing inconsistent hot water, or if you're unable to maintain a constant temperature, your unit is likely nearing the end of its life.
- Signs of leaks. Periodically check the floor under your unit for moisture. Older units often develop slow leaks that will worsen over time.
- Noises. As your water heater ages, sediment will build up and harden on the inside. You'll start to hear pops, rumbling or banging. These can cause cracks in the liner.
- A change in the color of your hot water. Such changes could mean your unit is rusting from the inside. If you suspect rust (or sediment), you can check by carefully draining water directly from your unit.
IF YOU SUSPECT YOUR WATER HEATER MAY BE NEARING THE END OF IT'S LIFE, call us at 866-PERKOSKI (866-737-5675) to schedule a FREE no-pressure consultation.
If we determine that your tank is nearing failure, we'll show you your replacement options. If we determine that your tank is still sound, we offer some steps that will as much as DOUBLE your water heater's remaining life.
- By draining your tank, we will remove much of the sediment that can lead to liner damage.
- We'll also pull and inspect your water heater's anode rod. If it's nearing depletion, we'll recommend replacing it. The "sacrificial" anode rod is the single most important part preventing rusting of your hot water tank. Here's how it works:
Over time, tiny cracks will develop in your water heater's glass liner exposing the steel to corrosive elements. The anode rod is made up of a more reactive metal. When the tank is filled with water, an electrolyte process begins whereby the sacrifical rod is consumed to protect the exposed steel of the tank. As long as this more reactive material lasts, the steel will not rust. When it's depleted, the tank corrosion. A new anode rod will add years of service to your aging unit. NOTE: The anode rod inspection is FREE with your consultation as it is with your annual heating/cooling maintenence service.
Call us at 866-PERKOSKI (866-737-5675), or schedule online.
Sunday, 31 July 2016
Some Important Advice to Delaware, Pennsylvania and Maryland Property Owners with Older ACs.
Prices for R-22 refrigerant (aka Freon) have risen sharply over the past few years. Here's why: A little over 25 years ago, the EPA ordered the gradual phasing out of R-22 as part of the international treaty (the "Montreal Protocol") aimed a reversing the thinning of the Earth's critical ozone layer. This thinning is responsible for dramatic increases in skin cancer and cataracts.
The good news: Recent M.I.T. research confirms the fact that the notorious "hole" in the ozone layer has indeed begun to heal.
The bad news: Air conditioner repair costs for older units will continue to soar as a result of the spiraling costs and increasing shortage of the R-22 refrigerant.
The 1990 Clean Air Act ended production in 2010 for new air conditioning units "charged" with R-22. Production of the refrigerant itself was immediately reduced by 75%. By 2014, that reduction had reached 90%. Now the pace of reduction has picked up. As of January 1, 2014, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ordered an immediate drop from 51 million pounds to 22 million pounds, then to 18 in 2016, 13 in 2017, 9 in 2019, and finally zero U.S. production in 2020.
Although some R-22 is still being recovered and reclaimed from units we replace, the amounts are not nearly enough to meet demand. The resulting shortages have led to dramatic price increases. By 2016, the price for the R-22 refrigerant has more than quadrupled over it's 2010 level. By contrast, the price of the environmentally-friendly R-410A refrigerant that is used in today's air conditioners is currently at the same level Freon was in 2010.
Owners of older air conditioners need to take action now to protect themselves from these spiraling repair costs. (Unfortunately, you cannot replace R-22 with the R-410A refrigerant. The engineering requirements of the compressors is completely different.) Here then are Stan's recommendations:
- Service your equipment every season. (ACs once and heat pumps twice a year). Although your air conditioner is a closed system, leaks do occur. Always a good idea for maximum comfort and efficiency, our precision tune-up will detect leaks early preventing expensive re-charges not to mention damage to the environment.
- Schedule a no-pressure no-obligation consultation. Your Stan Perkoski's professional will help you select the right replacement for your goals and for your budget. You'll learn just what you can expect in savings with today's high efficiency environmentally-friendly replacements. You'll now just how soon you can expect your new system to pay for itself, what impact today's higher efficiencies will have on your electric bills, and what you may gain in family comfort.
We will collect the refrigerant from your old unit and send it to a recycler. Unfortunately some disreputable contractors will release these harmful chemical into the environment.
Call 866-PERKOSKI (866-737-5675) to schedule your maintenance service and/or no-pressure consultation.