Holiday Home Safety Tips

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

During the holiday season, it is hard to take your mind off of shopping, cleaning, cooking, buying gifts, and preparing the house for visiting relatives and friends. Another thing that should be added to that list is the safety of your house during this season. Décor, trees, candles, and unattended stoves are the top hazards during the holidays. Read along in our December blog as we discuss holiday home safety tips.

Worry-Free Tree

If caught on fire, real or fake Christmas trees will wreak havoc on your house during the holiday season. When purchasing a fake tree, make sure it is labeled nonflammable or fire-retardant. If real trees aren’t properly watered, they can catch fire and have your whole house up in flames in a matter of seconds. Below are some ways you can avoid Christmas tree fires.

  • Low heat producing lights – This will help to keep the tree from drying up
  • NEVER overload your electrical circuits near the tree
  • Always turn Christmas lights off inside and outside the house when going to bed or leaving the house
  • Water your tree
  • Keep your tree away from any heating source

Décor Galore

Hanging, draping, and setting up decorations is one of the many delights that come with the holiday season. When you start setting up for Christmas, make sure you are using nonflammable or fire-retardant decorations. Also, make sure not to set décor on your fireplace mantel or near it where it can catch fire. If you have small children, be sure to use unbreakable decorations. When it is time to start decorating the tree, use ornaments that are nonflammable. A Christmas tree is one of the deadliest fire starters during the holidays. If you really want glass, sharp, or ceramic ornaments, try hanging them towards the top of the tree so little hands or paws can’t reach them. Candles are another source of deadly fires during the winter season. Keep them away from furniture, wrapped gifts, curtains, and anything that could possibly catch ablaze.

Safe and Sound

Along with traveling, working, and not being home on the holidays come criminals ready to pounce any chance they can get. Be extra careful this winter; lock your doors, windows, and garages before you leave the house. To help prevent theft, you can also:

  • Leave a few lights on inside
  • Try to unload packages in your garage with the door closed
  • Watch what you are posting on social media
  • Add lights: motion sensor lights are your friend

With the holidays closing in on us, we are here to make sure you are taking the correct steps to protect your home. Nonflammable trees, fire-retardant décor, and home safety and security are only some of the ways to keep your house safe and sound during this season. WestAIR Heating & Cooling can install gas fireplaces, so there is less of a possibility that your tree or decorations go up in flames. You can contact us to learn more about different types of fireplaces and to discuss more home safety holiday tips. WestAIR Heating & Cooling also wants to wish you happy holidays. Stay safe and have fun.

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Top Tips for Winter Heating this Season

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

As we watch the leaves fall off the trees and the snow come down, we can’t help but know that the seasons are changing, and fall is coming to an end. Homeowners must start thinking about how they are going to stay warm during this cold time of year. Along with winter comes the higher cost of heat and living. We here at WestAIR Heating & Cooling would like to give you a few tips for winter heating this season.

Purchase a Smart Thermostat

The year is 2022, smart devices are slowly taking over the world as we know it. Why not add another smart device that helps control the temperature of your home? A Wi-Fi enabled smart thermostat can be controlled from anywhere at any time using your smartphone. They track your movement and location. They know when you are away and when you are home. The ideal temperature for your house to run at is between 68 and 72 degrees. They help you to track your energy usage and can tell you when you are saving energy which can lead to lower utility bills in the long run.

Don’t Heat an Empty or Sleeping House

When you leave the house in the morning, you concentrate on getting ready, packing the car, and getting to your destination on time. One more thing you can add to that list is turning down the heat. You shouldn’t heat an empty house. You can save money on energy and your heating bills by simply lowering the heat by 7 degrees. We often have too much going through our heads to remember to turn the heat down, so if you are rushing out the door, your smart thermostat will know you’re gone and turn the heat down for you. You can also adjust the heat settings on your smart phone through an app. It’s proven that cooler temperatures will help your health. The cooler the room, the deeper your sleep, the greater your REM sleep is, and the faster you will fall asleep.

Put Your ceiling Fan in Reverse

Ceiling fans are nice for cooling down the house in the summer, but they also help to warm up your house in the winter. Once you flip the switch on your fan, the blades will start rotating clockwise. This will help bring the cold air towards the ceiling and push the warm air from top to bottom. This will help to keep your living space warm and cozy without putting a big dent in your pocket.

Contact your WestAIR HVAC Specialist

Purchasing a smart thermostat, putting your ceiling fan in reverse, and not heating an empty home are just a few tips and tricks you can use for winter heating this season. The professionals at West AIR want you to have reliable, efficient heating solutions that will last for many years down the road. If you think your HVAC system isn’t running correctly, or you need an annual maintenance inspection, contact WestAIR Heating & Cooling today.

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Benefits of a Garage Heater

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

Midwest winters are always a wild card. They can go from warm one day to negative twenty the next. You may use your garage for work, storage, or just to keep your car safe. Many homeowners may not even consider installing a heater in the garage, but if you spend a lot of time in there, it may offer more benefits than you think. Follow along as WestAIR Heating & Cooling discusses the benefits of a garage heater.

Keeps your Vehicle in Good Shape

If you look out your window on a weekday morning and see snow, ice, and a whole lot of work to get your car out, it may be time to start using your garage and invest in a heater. Garage heaters will not only help keep your car safe, but your loved ones too. If you drive your kids to daycare or school every morning, you don’t want to lug around a car seat in the freezing cold and ice or get into a freezing car every morning. With a garage heater, you will have less of a chance of slipping and you will be getting into a warm car. Snow, ice, and salt can be damaging to your car. Garage heaters can also help to protect your car from rust, and it will help protect the engine of your car.

Adds More Living Space

If you enjoy working on your car and having more room for activities, a garage heater will take living to the next level. You will be able to work in your garage year-round and have extra space in your house. Pets, children, and adults will have room for activities, and won’t have to be outside in the freezing cold. Some garages can double as a home gym, an art studio, a yoga studio, and so much more. Your garage can be more than just a storage unit for your cars and tools.

Helps Heat Your Home

One massive benefit of a garage heater is that it helps to keep your whole house warmer. The interior walls that are connected to your garage are going to be cold. Having a garage heater will help the warm air rise and balance out the temperature of the rooms above and around it. You will stay nice and cozy throughout the house.

With the cold days closing in on us, now is the time to start thinking about how to deal with this gnarly weather. A garage heater is just one of the many ways to keep your vehicles in good shape, add more living space to your home, and help keep your garage and home at a decent temperature. The professionals at WestAIR Heating & Cooling are here to help you select the perfect garage heater for your space and budget.  Contact us today to learn more and keep your garage comfortable year-round.

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Fall Maintenance Checklist

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

Fall is in the air and sweater weather is upon us. As you prepare your house with fall decorations like signs, pumpkins, and, of course, autumn scented candles, you may want to consider putting a few other things on your fall to-do list. Follow along in our blog to learn more about what you should put on your fall maintenance checklist.

Debris-Free AC and Heating

As you think about turning off your air conditioner and opening those windows, don’t forget about cleaning your HVAC unit for wintertime. The weather may be getting cooler, but you sure don’t need a broken furnace over the winter. Debris such as dust and pests can build up in your ductwork. This type of debris can be hazardous to you and to your home. So, get your ducts cleaned out for the start of winter. The same goes for your air conditioning. Unwanted debris could clog coils and damage your AC.

Check Your Air Filters

It’s true, you will be opening your windows more as the weather gets cooler, but once the snow starts to hit the ground, it’s time to turn the heat on. Make sure you are changing your air filters regularly. Changing your air filter helps keep a cleaner home, helps your health, it improves your HVAC system, and produces fresh indoor air.

Air Duct Cleaning

Get your cleaning gloves ready because it’s time to shine those air ducts. Your ducts need a good cleaning because the amount of time you are spending at home inside will increase. It will also help you to save energy in the long run. An air duct cleaning will help combat allergies and asthma, and it will help fight off any other sicknesses. If you don’t think you can clean your air ducts yourself, the professionals at West AIR Heating & Cooling are here to help.

Schedule a Fall Maintenance Visit

As summer comes to an end and you start thinking about all the fun things you are going to do in the next coming months, don’t forget about your annual fall cleaning. Checking your air filters, cleaning debris, and air duct cleaning are some of the things to make sure to have on your fall maintenance checklist. Contact WestAIR Heating & Cooling for all your fall maintenance needs.

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Recommended Thermostat Settings for Winter and Summer

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

It’s that time of year again where the weather can’t decide what temperature it wants to be. It can go from 80 degrees in the afternoon and drop down to 62 degrees at night. With all this weather confusion, it may be hard to figure out what your ideal in-home temperature should be. You want to be comfortable in your own home, but you also want to save money. WestAIR Heating & Cooling is here to tell you about the best recommended thermostat settings for winter and summer.

Summer Thermostat Settings

We may all be in denial that summer is almost over, but the last day is in fact September 22. According to AccuWeather, most September days will be warmer than 70 degrees. So don’t worry about the snow and cold yet! We have some summer cooling tips for you to use. For a normal thermostat setting, the universal guideline is 78 degrees. This will keep your home nice and cold, and it will keep your energy bill down. This temperature is recommended for only the times that you are home. When you aren’t home, you should turn your thermostat up about 10 degrees warmer than your normal cooling setting. This will help save energy.

Winter Thermostat Settings

Apples, hot chocolate, and sweater weather are just a few things to look forward to this fall and winter. As summer comes slowly to a close, we must start thinking about winter and how we will stay warm at an affordable price. Winter can be long and, at times, freezing cold. The ideal temperature for your house in the winter is around 68 degrees during the day. On the other hand, when heating your house for the night, you should lower it to 60 degrees. This will save homeowners between 5 and 10% on their utility bills each year.

A Smart Thermostat

Do you ever have that feeling that someone is watching you and taking note of every move you make? A smart thermostat does just that. In the long run, it will help you with energy consumption. Most smart thermostats can track when you are home and when you aren’t. It will kick in the moment it knows you are about to arrive home because it is constantly tracking you. If you forget to adjust your thermostat on your way out the door, it will automatically adapt for you. Some also have sensors that can detect the number of people in the room, the humidity, and much more.  

Settings that are Affordable and Comfortable

The comfortability of your home, in reality, is up to you. Whether you like it hot, cold, or even humid, the temperature you keep it at is what makes you feel most relaxed and at home and won’t hurt your budget.

If you feel like your heating and cooling bills are through the roof, then WestAIR Heating & Cooling knows just how to help you. Your home’s HVAC system is our number one priority. We are dedicated to delivering top-tier service to homes in the Twin Cities. Contact us today for all your air conditioning, heating, and thermostat needs.

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Let’s Clear the Air: Benefits of Air Cleaners and Purifiers

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

Take a deep breath in. If you feel short-winded, pain in your chest, or maybe even a little ear or throat irritation, it may be time to think about purchasing an air cleaner and purifier. They help reduce allergies, lower the chance of getting an airborne disease, improve sleep, and so much more. Air purifiers make the air cleaner and healthier for you and your family. So, let’s clear the air. Follow along as WestAIR Heating & Cooling discusses the benefits of air cleaners and purifiers.

Health Benefits

Health is wealth in 2022. We all want to live to a ripe old age. Air quality can be a big factor to one’s health. Oftentimes there is more pollution, pet dander, and dust mites inside rather than outside a home. Air purifiers can help kick those pesky problems out the door. Of the many health benefits of air purifiers and cleaners, some of the more significant ones include:

  • Help lessen asthma attacks
  • Sanitize indoor air
  • Filter out harsh indoor chemicals
  • Protect your home from mold spores

In addition, air purifiers are also beneficial as tension and stress relivers. Research indicates that people who live in higher-polluted areas are more likely to experience stress and other health issues. Investing in an air purifier can help keep the air inside your home cleaner while the white noise can help you get better sleep.

Decreases Nasty Odors

PEW! What’s that smell?! You don’t want to welcome a guest into your home with unpleasant odor. A scented candle or diffuser may hide the smell but not forever. And neither method can make the air clean, fresh, or safe. The best way to rid your home of unwanted odors like smoke, food, or garbage is to purchase an air purifier and cleaner.

Skin Benefits

As the body’s largest organ, the skin also benefits from investing in an air cleaner and purifier. Let’s look at some of the ways in which air cleaners and purifiers help improve the health of your skin.

  • Cleaners and purifiers can help alleviate itchy, red, irritated patches.
  • Summer sun can lead to dehydration, which can cause dry, tight-feeling skin. Air cleaners and purifiers help hold moisture in the air, improving your skin’s hydration and elasticity.

At WestAIR, we want to help you and your family to experience cleaner air at home. Contact us to chat with one of our experts or to purchase an air cleaner for your home.

Cleaners and Purifiers for Your Needs

We offer many models of air cleaners and purifiers for many different spaces, from large living rooms to small bedrooms and everything in between.

Our efficient and effective Aprilaire Air Cleaner captures and removes harmful particles from the air and circulates clean air back into your home. This advanced system also:

  • Requires little-to-no maintenance
  • Provides high-quality filtering
  • Traps 98 percent of airborne dust

Contact the Professionals

Clean air helps support a healthy living environment for you and your family. WestAIR Heating & Cooling can help you determine the air purifying needs of your home. So, let’s clear the air and help you take advantage of the benefits of air cleaners and purifiers. Contact us today to learn more or to schedule service.

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Benefits of a Mini-Split AC

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

We should never take the air conditioning for granted. It helps to cool us down on those hot summer days, it provides better air quality for us, and it even helps us sleep better. There is more than just one cooling system. In fact, there are  8 different types, but the ductless mini-split air conditioner may be the best option if you’re thinking about an upgrade. Keep reading to learn the benefits of a mini-split AC and why it might be the best choice for your home, warehouse office, or garage.

Environmentally Smart

In today’s world, everyone is trying to be environmentally smart, from buying locally grown food to using more ecofriendly products in their households. When you invest in a ductless mini-split, you are being more energy efficient and reducing consumption. Some forced air systems can often be uneconomical because the ductwork can have tears, gaps, and other issues causing cooling loss. 

No Ductwork Needed

Many older homes do not contain ductwork. This makes it nearly impossible to have central air in your household. Therefore, you may need mini-splits installed in your house. This may be seen as an advantage to some though. Ductwork can often become pricey and complex. When it comes to cooling and installing air into your older home, ductless mini-splits are the number one choice.

Budget Friendly

In today’s society, if you are trying to be frugal, we would definitely recommend having ductless mini-splits through-out your house. Mini-splits cost less than installing whole home ductwork. They also are energy efficient, and require less maintenance than your average window unit. You will typically find yourself paying between $4,000 and $6,000 to get a single head ductless mini-split installed. Multi head systems range from $6,000-$10,000 depending on the design and sizing. Looking for a company to install a ductless air conditioner in your house, garage, or warehouse office? Schedule a service with WestAIR Heating & Cooling today.

Health Conscious

The June flowers are still in bloom, so that means lots of itchy eyes, sneezing, and coughing. Ductless mini-splits lower your risk of breathing in contaminants in the air, help balance out humidity in the air, and there won’t be any ductwork toxins like pests, insect droppings, dust, and bacteria. Ductless mini-splits will transfer clean air directly in and out of your house.

Whether you’re working hard to fix your car in the garage or sending emails in your home office, you should be keeping cool, saving money, and breathing better air. Ductless mini-splits are effective, budget friendly, and high quality units. If you are looking to have one installed, contact our professionals at WestAIR heating & Cooling today.

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Repair or Replace: 6 Signs You Need a New Air Conditioner

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

Certified HVAC Technician performing an inspection for signs it's time for a new air conditioner.

The weather is heating up here in Minnesota. Have you given your cooling system a test run yet? Doing so allows you to address any issues before the hot and humid summer days arrive. But how will you know if you need a repair or a replacement? Read on to learn about six signs you need a new air conditioner.

Frequent Repairs and Old Age

According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), central air conditioners typically last about 15-20 years. And while occasional repairs are to be expected, having to do so frequently means you likely need a replacement. If your AC is around 15 years old and/or needs multiple service calls during the cooling season, it may be time to forget the repair bills and invest in a new cooling system.

Strange Odors and/or Sounds

Your AC shouldn’t be silent, but be on alert for certain noises that point to a problem:

  • Loud grinding, squealing, or scraping noises could indicate a faulty belt, which can damage other parts if unaddressed.
  • Frequent cycling (system turning on/off) could be caused by an improperly sized unit, a leaky ventilation system, or issues with the evaporator coils.

Additionally, the air pushed out by the system should not offend your nostrils. Don’t ignore strange odors when your AC is on:

  • Burning smells may be due to burned-out wiring or other issues with the unit’s internal pieces, which could lead to an electrical fire.
  • Foul, rotten egg smells could indicate a gas leak that poses a serious health and safety hazard for you and your family.
  • Musty smells could mean moisture is escaping into your ductwork and creating health risks.

If you notice any of these issues, contact WestAIR ASAP to investigate and resolve the issue to keep your household safe.

Moisture Buildup On/Around Condenser Unit

Your AC will naturally produce some condensation, but liquids should never leak from the unit. Pooling water may be caused by a blocked or busted condensation tube and is a less serious issue. However, the refrigerant the system uses to cool the air is poisonous. Contact our expert HVAC technicians immediately if you notice any liquids on or around the condenser unit.

Excess Indoor Humidity

Speaking of moisture, a properly functioning cooling system should help maintain proper indoor humidity levels. If your home feels excessively humid, that’s a sign that your AC is failing and may need to be replaced.

Weak, Warm, and/or Uneven Air Distribution

Air conditioners should supply your entire home with cool, evenly distributed air. Warm air could be caused by a problem with the compressor or restricted airflow. If you notice uneven or weak air distribution from your vents, you may need to change/clean your filter or clean your ductwork to clear a blockage. You should schedule a professional inspection from an HVAC specialist to diagnose the exact cause and discuss the ideal solution to these problems.

Higher Energy Bills

Higher energy bills are to be expected as we increase the demand on our HVAC system during the cooling months. But if your bills seem to spike unreasonably, it’s likely that your AC isn’t operating efficiently and needs to be repaired or replaced.

Rely on WestAIR Heating & Cooling for AC Repair and Replacement

As we prepare for the hot and humid summer days ahead, now’s the time to ensure your AC is ready. Keep an eye out for these signs you need a new air conditioner when testing your system before the cooling season is in full swing. If you notice any issues, the local HVAC experts at WestAIR are here to help.

Contact us to learn more and schedule service.

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Benefits of UV Light Air Purification

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

Did you know that ultraviolet (UV) light technology has been used for disinfectant purposes for over a century? While not a novel concept, the technology has grown in popularity among homeowners seeking to improve indoor air quality (IAQ). Read on to learn more about the benefits of UV light air purification.

Reduced Allergen Presence & Improved Overall Air Quality

Working in conjunction with your current HVAC system, UV lights help eliminate odors and harmful airborne pathogens. This effectively reduces the presence of allergens and improves overall IAQ.

Removes Volatile Organic Compounds

Volatile Organic compounds (VOCs) pose a health and safety hazard if breathed in, especially with prolonged exposure. While naturally occurring, they’re also found in many cleaning and disinfectant solutions, aerosol sprays, and other common household products. UV lights target and eliminate VOCs to improve IAQ and help protect your family.

Kills Mold, Bacteria, and Viruses

UV lights produce UV rays that break through an organism’s cell wall and sufficiently damage or destroy its DNA. As a result, the organism is unable to reproduce and cause illness or irritate asthma or allergy sufferers. In addition to VOCs, these rays attack other contaminants like viruses, mold, and bacteria—including odor-causing bacteria.

Better Airflow Throughout System

The air filter works to trap contaminants before they can enter the HVAC system. However, over time, dust and other debris naturally collect in the ductwork and throughout the system, forcing it to work harder. UV lights clear these buildups, improving IAQ as well as the airflow of your system.

Increased HVAC Efficiency

As mentioned, UV lights work to remove debris buildup in ductwork, as well as your HVAC system’s pipes and cooling coils. They also help reduce moisture within the system, which can help prevent condensate drain line clogs. In the end, these factors improve airflow as well as overall efficiency, resulting in decreased energy costs.

Trust WestAIR Heating & Cooling to Help Clear the Air in Your Home

Considering how much time we spend inside our homes, indoor air quality plays a vital role in our health and safety. And with cooling season right around the corner, it’s the perfect time to enjoy the benefits of UV light air purification with your HVAC system.

Contact the local HVAC experts at WestAIR to learn more and schedule service.

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Get Smart About Your Home Comfort

Posted on by WestAIR Heating & Cooling

Get-Smart-About-Your-Home-Comfort

Your home is your sanctuary, and you want to be as comfortable as possible, right? We understand that, and now is the time to get smart about your home comfort. A programmable thermostat from WestAIR Heating & Cooling allows you to effortlessly stay cool or cozy all year round. Keep reading to learn more about these high-tech, user-friendly tools and how they can benefit your home.

Easy to Use

Maybe one of the biggest benefits of a programmable thermostat is that the device is simple to use, even if you aren’t incredibly tech-savvy. The instruction manual for most models walks you through the features and programming capabilities on the device’s touch screen, so everything is readily available and literally at your fingertips. Once you’ve programmed a setting, time, reminder, or update, you’ll get a recap and verification of the information to be sure what you’ve set is exactly what you want.

And many models are compatible with mobile devices and smart controls like Alexa or Google. You can check, change, set, or reset your thermostat settings on your phone or other gadget from anywhere with a Wi-Fi connection. Or you can verbally adjust settings through your home’s network while sitting on the couch or lying in bed.

Enjoy Consistent Comfort

Gone are the days of your home feeling too cold in the winter or too hot in the summer. Better yet, with a programmable thermostat you don’t have to adjust for consistent comfort. You determine the ideal temperature for you and your family, and the smart thermostat does the heavy lifting by providing a steady flow of warm or cool air based on your schedule and needs.

Improve HVAC Efficiency

Installing a smart thermostat with your current HVAC system will help it run more efficiently. The unit will run only when needed based on your programmed settings, helping to reduce the workload and added wear and tear on the system. You’ll save energy while helping to extend the life of your HVAC system.

Energy Savings = Cost Savings

While working with your HVAC system to save energy, a programmable thermostat also saves you money. And with energy bills on the rise, there’s no smarter time to invest in one of these devices. You can set your smart thermostat to fit your home comfort needs based on your schedule. Then, set the temp slightly lower at night or when you’re away. Every degree makes a difference.

Invest in Your Home Comfort

No matter the season, your home comfort matters. Investing in a programmable thermostat is an easy and efficient way to ensure you and your family are comfortable all year long. These smart-yet-simple devices put all the control in your hands while helping you save time, energy, and money. Want to learn more? Our knowledgeable team at WestAIR Heating & Cooling can help. Contact us today to ask about the programmable thermostats we offer and find out how they can benefit your HVAC system and your home.

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