Posts made in May, 2015

2-Step Guide For Cleaning The Coils On Your Home’s Heat Pump

When your home has a heat pump, properly maintaining is vital for keeping your energy costs from skyrocketing from 10 to 25 percent higher. Part of this maintenance is cleaning the coils on the pump. If you would like to do this yourself, use the following 2-step guide twice a year.

Step 1:  Vacuum The Coils

The first step uses a vacuum to remove any loose dust and cobwebs that have settled on the coils. You will need a vacuum cleaner with a hose, a crevice tool, and a soft brush attachment.

Turn off the heat pump and remove the access panel. Then, use the crevice tool to remove any cobwebs hanging around the coils. Do not allow the tool to touch the coils because any excess pressure could bend the coil fins.

Once the cobwebs are cleared away, replace the crevice tool with the soft brush. Use this brush to lightly vacuum the top and bottom surfaces of the coils. Once you have removed all of the loose debris, go on to the next step.

Step 2:  Use Vinegar To Remove Any Stuck-On Grime

After getting rid of the excess dust, closely look at the coils to see if there is any stuck-on grime or grease. If you see any, you can use white distilled vinegar to remove it. The vinegar will break down the grease and oil, making it easier for you to remove the dirt without damaging the coils or fins. 

You will also need a small bucket, warm water, and a soft, lint-free cloth. A cloth diaper or mechanic’s cloth works well for this purpose.

In the bucket, mix together a cup each of the vinegar and warm water. Then, use the cloth to carefully dab the solution on the grimy areas. Let it soak in for about five minutes.

While you are letting the vinegar solution soak in, empty the bucket and replace it with clean, warm water. Dip the cloth into the water and wring it out. Then, wipe the coils clean and let them air dry before turning the heat pump back on.

Cleaning your heat pump’s coils twice a year can extend its life and save you money on your monthly bill. However, if you decide you do not want to do this task yourself or feel there is a problem with the coils, you may want to contact a contractor who specializes in heat pump repair and replacement to take a look at it.

To learn more about heat pumps, talk to a professional like Hayes Heating & Cooling.

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Open Vs. Closed Cell Foam Insulation: Which Is Right For Your Needs?

Many homeowners and contractors will find that spray foam insulation is the best option available for their insulation needs. However, while narrowing down the choices this far may be easy for many people, choosing between the options of open and closed cell foam can be a bit more difficult. This is because many people fail to understand the true differences between these two products and how these differences can impact the way their insulation works.

Below you will learn more about these differences, as well as the pros and cons that accompany both open and closed cell foam so that you can ultimately make an informed decision regarding which type of insulation is right for you:

Blocking Moisture

Closed cell foam makes use of small gas bubbles inside each cell that burst during the application process causing the cell to become completely closed. This allows the cells to bond together to create a virtually impenetrable moisture barrier.

When choosing open cell foam, the air bubbles inside each cell will remain intact during the application process. As a result, this insulation is able to absorb moisture rather than creating a barrier against it.

Consequently, open cell foam will often prove to be the inferior product when insulating exterior walls, attics, and basements, since these areas of the home will require the ability to block out moisture.

Absorbing Sound

When sound waves hit closed cell insulation, the reaction is much like running into a brick wall, the sound is likely to go flying in all directions. This is because the solid surface created by closed cell insulation does not have the ability to absorb anything.

Open cell foam on the other hand, has the benefit of many microscopic air bubbles that allow for the absorption of sound. Consequently, when sound waves hit this insulation, they will simply be absorbed and deadened. This allows for a very impressive sound barrier when insulating a play room, music room, conference room or other area where privacy is of the utmost importance.

Standing Up To The Test Of Time

One of the biggest problems that most insulation materials have is a process known as settling. Settling occurs over time as the insulation loses its elasticity and therefore begins to lose volume. When this happens, the effectiveness of the insulation will become greatly compromised.

Since closed cell foam does not have any gaps or spaces in its molecular structure, it will experience far less settling than open cell foam. This allows it to last significantly longer without being replaced. To learn more, contact a company like Bios Environments with any questions or concerns you have.

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