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How to Be More Energy Efficient in the Kitchen and Save Money


The kitchen: it’s known as the “heart of the home,” but it probably also cuts to the heart of your monthly electric and gas bills.

Next to your central air conditioner and water heater, your refrigerator uses more energy than any other appliance. This is a good place to start as you look for ways to be more energy efficient in the kitchen – and see the results on your energy bills.

Tips for Energy Efficient Appliance Use

Refrigerator and Freezer

  • Check the settings. Your refrigerator temperature should be between 30 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit and your freezer should be at 0.
  • Vacuum and clean the coils at least twice a year to stop dust, dirt and food particles from hindering your refrigerator’s efficiency.
  • Make sure direct sunlight doesn’t shine on your refrigerator. If you can, position it away from heat sources such as the oven and dishwasher.
  • Check there is at least a 2-inch gap between the back of the refrigerator and the wall so that air circulates freely.
  • Conduct a quick test of the seals by inserting a piece of paper into the door and then closing it. If you can easily pull out the paper, cool air is probably escaping and you should repair or replace the seal.
  • Defrost your freezer at least once per year – and more often if you notice ice buildup.
  • Cover food and liquids before storing them in the refrigerator or freezer so that released moisture doesn’t force the compressor to work harder.

Oven and Stove

  • Match the size of the bottom of the pot or pan you’re using to the heating element to save energy.
  • Place lids on pots and pans to conserve energy as you cook.
  • Bake with glass and ceramic dishes, if you can. They retain heat better than dark baking pans and can even allow you to lower the oven temperature by 25 degrees.
  • Keep the oven door closed as meals cook. Every rush of open air causes the oven temperature to plunge by 25 to 75 degrees, lengthening your cooking time.
  • Rather than your stove or oven, defer to a slow cooker, electric skillet, convection oven, or toaster oven for smaller meals. Generally, these appliances consume between one-third and one-half the energy of larger appliances.

Dishwasher

  • Wait to run your dishwasher until you have a full load of dishes.
  • Turn off the “heat” cycle and let your dishes air-dry, or use the energy-saving dry option, if your dishwasher has one.
  • Remove food particles from the dishwasher drain every week to help it run more efficiently.

Continue Being Energy Efficient with a New HVAC System

By putting these tips into consistent practice, they will eventually turn into habits. Over time, these good habits will become second-nature. Just think how much faster the energy savings will accrue if you get everyone in your home onboard in your endeavors to be more energy efficient. Think of this as your “recipe” for energy-saving success in the kitchen, then follow it up with an energy efficient HVAC system for a well-rounded approach. Call us at 702-385-2665 to schedule a consultation.

 

 




Vigilant Housekeeping Combined with Nifty Techniques Can Reduce “Dust Clouds” in Your Home


A common question asked by AC users everywhere is, “Every time my air conditioner turns on, it kicks up dust everywhere in my home. What can I do?” The key is to eliminate dust, not just move it around. You can keep “dust clouds” to a minimum with vigilant housekeeping and some nifty cleaning techniques.

Cleaning Techniques to Reduce Dust in Your Home

Be Vigilant about Housekeeping

  • Check your HVAC filter every month and replace it once you can no longer see through it. Otherwise, the excess buildup will impede the efficiency of your system and could funnel into your ducts.
  • Vacuum your carpets at least once a week, going over high-traffic areas twice.
  • Shake dust and dirt from throw rugs outdoors. Then toss them in the washing machine.
  • Wash bedding – sheets, pillowcases and blankets – in hot water at least twice a month. Dust mites love to nestle in bedding.
  • Declutter wherever you can. Piles of paper, books, magazines and toys are dust magnets.
  • Streamline your closet by storing clothes you don’t wear regularly in garment or plastic bags. Next to the fibers in your carpeting, more dust settles in closets than almost anywhere else in your home.
  • Clean your ceiling fan blades – a common source of “dust clouds” every time the blades begin to spin. Make this often-dreaded household task much easier by using a dryer sheet to lift dust. You can even wrap a dryer sheet around an extended paint roller to help you reach.

Adopt Some Dust-Trapping Cleaning Techniques

  • Dryer sheets also work particularly well on TV and computer screens – not only lifting dirt but keeping the screens cleaner for longer periods of time.
  • You may love your feather duster, but instead of lifting dust, it sends it flying to different locations around the room. If you haven’t made the switch to microfiber cloths, buy a bundle and watch how they draw dust like a vacuum. Shake them out, toss them in the washing machine and enjoy them for years.
  • Pleated lampshades can confound even professional house cleaners – unless they’ve tried using a (clean) dry paintbrush. The soft bristles fit snugly into creases. Alternatively, try using a lint roller.
  • Cleaning ceramic is simple if you rub it with a slice of lemon. Let the juice sit for about 15 minutes. Then polish the ceramic with a microfiber cloth.
  • An obscure, but effective, tool for cleaning oil paintings is a piece of white bread. The moisture picks up dust easily, also making it ideal for other dusty jobs if you’re in a pinch.

Schedule an Air Duct Cleaning with Instant Air

It is just as vital that your air ducts remain free of dust, dirt and grime as anything else in your house. Instant Air is here to help! Call us at 702-385-2665 to schedule an air duct cleaning today!




Tips To Managing Your HVAC System This Holiday Season


When you’re hosting a holiday gathering at your home, you want everything to be perfect. And while it may seem as though you’re paying attention to every last detail, few people give thought to their HVAC system. Living in the desert, HVAC upkeep is especially important. Here are 5 tips for managing your HVAC system for your upcoming holiday gatherings:

  1. Schedule Your Annual Maintenance

The best solution to any problem is always to take action before a problem begins. Schedule your annual Las Vegas HVAC maintenance before the day of the celebration. Then you can rest assured that your guests will be comfortable.

  1. Dust the Vents

In any large group, there is bound to be somebody who suffers from allergies. Things your family might not be sensitive to could be a trigger for one of your guests. Go around and dust any visible vents in your home. You can also wipe them down with a damp rag to remove any dust that may have accumulated.

  1. Change Your Filter

Your HVAC system’s filter keeps dust, dirt, allergens and other contaminants from blowing into your home. This makes a huge difference in your indoor air quality. Usually, these filters should be changed once a month, or once per season at minimum.

  1. Adjust the Thermostat

When you’re hosting a party, the temperature tends to rise due to all of the extra body heat from your guests. Plus, you probably have a turkey or ham cooking in the oven, which is also warming up the house. A few hours before your holiday gathering begins, turn your thermostat down by a few degrees, ensuring your home will still feel comfortable while filled with guests.

  1. Keep the Door Shut

Every time you open the door, the warm air from inside escapes. This makes your HVAC system work harder to recover. Try to minimize the number of times you are opening your door and avoid leaving it ajar.

 

Schedule a Maintenance Visit for Your HVAC System

If you take the time to consider your Las Vegas HVAC system in advance, you will be rewarded with a nice, warm home throughout the holiday season. Call us today at 702-385-2665 to schedule an appointment.

 




Understanding How to Get the Most Out of Your HVAC Installation


As the seasons change, it becomes peak time to talk about maintaining your HVAC installation. Even here in Las Vegas, heaters start kicking on during the cool nights – and air conditioners still run during the day– you can only imagine the strain on your HVAC installation as it adjusts to the new demands of the weather. We are here to help you learn how your HVAC system works, so you can optimize its use and upkeep.

Five Components to Understand With Your HVAC Installation

1. The Air Goes In

It all starts with your air return vents. This is where the entire ventilation cycle begins. The fans draw air in via the return, pass it through a filter and send it through your system.

Maintenance Alert! Filters can get dirty fast. They need to be changed or cleaned regularly. Some of the most common HVAC problems begin with dirty filters.

 

2. The Air Goes Around

Ducts facilitate airflow, allowing air to move freely from the main HVAC unit to each of your rooms.

Maintenance Alert! Ducts rapidly accumulate dust. It’s important to have your ducts cleaned regularly, or the air floating around your house could be filled with allergens and mites.

 

3. The Air Comes Out

Exhaust outlets allow air to exit your home safely.

Maintenance Alert! Heating systems create exhaust, which can be dangerous if it builds up. Vent stacks and chimney flues need to be checked and cleaned at least once a year.

 

4. You Choose Your Ideal Temperature

You set your thermostat to your ideal temperature, assuming the rest will take care of itself. On hotter days, it’s best to set the temperature a little higher than you normally would if you’re trying to conserve energy, lower on colder days.

Maintenance Alert! You may find yourself in uncomfortable temperatures if your thermostat’s batteries are low or if you have a tripped breaker. These are easy fixes that usually don’t require a house call from an electrician.

 

5. The Outdoor Unit Does the Rest

The outdoor unit consists of the compressor, coils and blower. Each of these elements contains moving parts that need to be checked at least once a year to ensure optimal airflow throughout your home.

Maintenance Alert! Weeds and other vegetation can cause big problems if your outdoor unit becomes overgrown.

 

Schedule a Maintenance Visit for Your HVAC Installation

Now that you know a little more about your HVAC installation, you understand the need to keep it in tip top condition. Schedule a maintenance visit with an Instant Air technician to make sure everything is in prime working order as the seasons change. Give us a call at 702-385-2665 to schedule an appointment today!




The Ultimate Fall Home Maintenance Checklist


After months of stifling, 100-degree days in Las Vegas, you can now throw yourself into the task of preparing your home for fall – and the cooler temperatures that await. Check these 10 tasks off your “to-do” list so that you can get into the spirit of this time of year, maybe by falling into your favorite comfortable chair.

Fall Home Maintenance Checklist Tasks:

  • Flip the switch on your ceiling fans so that the blades run in a clockwise direction. This reversal – from running counterclockwise in the summer – will push the warm air that naturally gathers up high downward into a room.
  • Replace the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Run a test to ensure they work. Replace batteries at least once every year.
  • Prune trees to prevent limbs from falling and causing damage as well as to improve their overall shape. Trees grow slowly in the fall, making it the best time of year for this job.
  • Clear out gutters and downspouts. Keep water from backing up and accumulating on your roof – and eventually, seeping into your home. Also, check for damaged pieces and tighten hangers and brackets.
  • Replace damaged caulk or weather stripping around your windows and doors. This prevents air leaks and keeps your energy bills in check. Use weather-stripping around movable components and caulk around stationary ones.
  • Seal holes and gaps around your home. This is especially important near the foundation and on the roof – where rodents and small animals could enter. They’re actively scouting for a winter refuge, so make your home off-limits.
  • Schedule a chimney inspection. The National Fire Protection Association and the Chimney Safety Institute of America recommends doing this at least once a year. The inspection could lead to a chimney sweep to remove creosote, the black substance that can ignite a chimney fire.
  • Check the condition of your fire extinguishers. If they show any sign of damage, they should be replaced. While you’re at it, ensure that you have one on every floor of your home and one devoted to the kitchen. Fall is also a good time to run through a fire drill with your household. While fire extinguishers are not difficult to use, a practice drill helps because we don’t use them every day and will prepare everyone in the household in case of a fire.
  • Replace your furnace filter. You should check it every month, especially if you’re running your HVAC system regularly. It’s time to replace the filter with a new one when it’s stuffed with clumps of dust and dirt. A clean filter will help your system run more efficiently.
  • Schedule a furnace inspection with Instant Air. We’ll thoroughly clean and lubricate your furnace so that you derive all the benefits: a system that is safe to run and doesn’t pose a fire hazard; runs smoothly; keeps your utility bills under control; shouldn’t breakdown unexpectedly; and reaches its expected lifespan (and maybe longer).

 

Begin Your Fall Maintenance Checklist by Scheduling an HVAC Maintenance Visit

The best way to tackle a home maintenance checklist is to start checking off the easiest tasks. Within just a few minutes, you can check off scheduling your HVAC maintenance visit by calling Instant Air at 702-385-2665 or filling out our contact form. We will tune-up and prepare your HVAC unit for the cooler months and allow you to focus on completing the rest of your fall home maintenance checklist.

 




Prepare for Cooler Fall Weather by Scheduling a Las Vegas HVAC Maintenance Visit


Nevada enjoyed a beautiful summer this year, but those long summer days are readily getting shorter and shorter with fall and winter fast approaching. The cooler temperatures may be ideal for outdoor bon fires and longer hikes outside the city, but they also signal it’s time to switch from using your air conditioning equipment to your heating equipment. This makes it prime time to schedule Las Vegas HVAC maintenance. Here are three more reasons why you should schedule a maintenance visit now.

3 Reasons It’s Important to Schedule Las Vegas HVAC Maintenance in the Fall

  1. Keep HVAC efficiency high and energy bills low. Heating and cooling account for nearly half of the average household’s energy bills every year. These important pieces of equipment are key to keeping our homes comfortable during the hot days of summer and frigid winter nights. However, peak efficiency performance requires preventative care and maintenance. When you schedule a fall Las Vegas HVAC maintenance visit, technicians will do a thorough inspection of your heating equipment and check fluid levels, test motors and inspect for leaks. These preventative and mitigation steps will ensure when you turn on your heating equipment for the first time, you are enjoying its best performance possible.
  2. Confirm clearance from summer clutter. There’s a lot of fuss about spring cleaning, but we believe fall clearing is just as important. After the warm winds of summer and late summer monsoon season, Nevada homes often showcase a fair amount of overgrowth and clutter. In the fall, it’s important to complete thorough inspections and clear out any leaves, twigs and other debris from around outdoor HVAC units. Fall is also an ideal time to trim back any shrubs, branches and other plant life (a good rule of thumb is to keep a three-foot clearance around HVAC units). Fall trimming is especially important if you have any weak or dying branches that could knock out heating equipment should they fall.
  3. Preventative maintenance and repairs now mean less risk of headaches tomorrow. The last thing you and your family want is for your heating equipment to break down in the middle of winter, especially in the peak of the holiday season. Impromptu major breakdowns like this can be expensive to fix when they’re last-minute and often could be avoided with a bit of preventative maintenance and equipment inspections. While no heating equipment will last forever, experienced technicians know how to spot warning signs before they become reality. Scheduling a Las Vegas HVAC maintenance visit in the fall enables you to be one step ahead of repairs with small issues remedied before they have the chance to become mega headaches. Plus, such annual or biannual service visits can add years onto the lifespan of your equipment.

Schedule a Las Vegas HVAC Maintenance Visit Today

For more information about why you should schedule a Las Vegas HVAC maintenance this fall, or to go ahead and schedule a service visit, contact us today at Instant Air. You can also call us at (702) 385-2665 for same day guarantee service whenever you need professional, experienced HVAC repair.




Hit by Flash Flooding in Las Vegas? Why You May Need an HVAC Replacement


As frightening as flash flooding can be, dealing with the aftermath can be even more stressful.

Many homeowners are dealing with flooded heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment from the recent monsoon season. And many are now confronting the possibility of an HVAC replacement in Las Vegas.

Here we answer some commonly asked questions about HVAC units impacted by flooding:

Question: My outdoor unit got flooded with water. What should I do?

Answer: Turn it off and call a professional to inspect the damage before turning it back on again. Instant Air provides 24 hour service for instances like this, so be sure to call us right away so we can get you back up and running ASAP.

Question: So, I really I shouldn’t turn on my AC?

Answer: Correct. If you haven’t already turned it on, leave it that way. And if you have turned it on, turn it off immediately. Even if your air conditioner looks OK, or you think the heat may have dried it out, it’s not worth taking the chance as it could lead to irreparable damage.

Question: My neighbor turned on his flooded unit after a few days and it seems fine. So what does this mean?

Answer: It’s difficult to tell without seeing the unit in person. But remember that looks can be deceiving. It’s possible that your neighbor’s condensing unit sustained considerable damage – and that he is taking a safety risk by continuing to run his air conditioner in a compromised state. It’s never worth taking chances with a complex piece of electrical machinery like an air conditioner.

Question: So what can flood water do to an air conditioner?

Answer: Potentially, lots of things. The electrical components – the wiring, fuses and circuits – may be damaged. Plus, flood water tends to be dirty and clogged with debris. This debris can cling to the condenser unit coil. So even if your air conditioner is working now this grime may be reducing its efficiency and eventually cause the unit to falter. Your HVAC system represents one of the biggest investments you’ve made in your home. Entrust a reputable HVAC contractor to clean, dry, disinfect, repair and restore it, if possible.

Question: “If possible” sounds like I should prepare myself for the possibility of an HVAC replacement. Is this correct?

Answer: Yes, this might be a smart move. Take it from the Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute, a trade association that has been advising homeowners dealing with flood damage from Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Irma in Florida. AHRI President & CEO Stephen Yurek has been encouraging flood-ravaged homeowners to “play it safe” with their HVAC systems: “Standing water in a yard, house or basement can damage a home’s heating, cooling and water heating equipment in ways that are not always readily apparent, putting families at risk. We advise homeowners to play it safe and replace, rather than repair, flood-damaged heating, cooling and water heating equipment.”

Schedule an Inspection or Las Vegas HVAC Replacement Quote

Avoiding a professional HVAC inspection after a flooding can lead to detrimental consequences. Protect your investment by scheduling an Instant Air technician to come inspect your unit for damage. If it’s beyond repair, our team will guide you through different HVAC replacement options and provide recommendations. If you have any further questions, please call us at (702) 385-2665.




Last Chance to Capitalize on This Summer End Closeout Deal for HVAC in Las Vegas


Savvy consumers know the best time to buy winter coats is at the tail end of winter – just like the best time to buy summer suits and dresses is at the tail end of summer.

You may have to wait until the season rolls around again to wear your purchases, but in the meantime, you can bask (and boast) in the realization that you’ve saved a significant amount of money over what you would have spent at the high-season mark.

The stakes grow right along with price, which is why a $1,000 discount from Instant Air makes now the very best time to purchase a new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system for your home.

Customers find lots to love in their new HVAC in Las Vegas

A discount like this one will not last forever. In fact, it ends on October 31st. Take it from the Instant Air customers who have already taken advantage of this deep discount. They have told us:

  • Saving $1,000 has made a new HVAC unit affordable and attainable.
  • They relish the idea they successfully saved a great deal of money on what is the costliest system in their home.
  • They finally feel unburdened by the constant expense and worry of “patching together” their ailing air conditioner (because most air conditioners require more frequent repairs during the last two years of their lifespan).
  • They’re surprised at the improved quality of their indoor air (explained by the fact that many of today’s energy-efficient systems are better equipped to reduce humidity and indoor allergens).
  • They enjoy the quieter operation of their new HVAC unit.

They will need a little more time to tell, but many of our customers also should enjoy lower energy bills. This is because many HVAC systems consume far less energy than their predecessors. In fact, “today’s best air conditioners use 30 to 50 percent less energy to produce the same amount of cooling as air conditioners made in the mid-1970s,” the U.S. Department of Energy says. “Even if your air conditioner is only 10 years old, you may save 20 to 40 percent of your cooling energy costs by replacing it with a newer, more efficient model.”

Inquire About Instant Air’s Summer End HVAC in Las Vegas Deal

Cash in on the $1,000 savings and get your new HVAC in Las Vegas. To get started, call Instant Air and make an appointment so we can properly size your home, study its exposure to the sun on all sides and make a recommendation for the best HVAC units for you.




Ways to Combat Indoor Air Pollution


The scorching Las Vegas heat means air conditioners work full-time which, in turn, means your house is sealed up for months on end. This results in a host of indoor air pollutants like animal dander, dust mites and pollen being trapped inside. These pollutants can exacerbate allergies, asthma and other respiratory ailments for people with such conditions. Children, in particular, can be seriously affected by indoor irritants.

The top offenders of poor indoor air quality are chemicals, particulates and mold. The EPA offers a bunch of suggestions on improving your home’s indoor air quality. Top recommendations include updating your home’s ventilation, purifying the inside air and controlling the source of pollutants.

Eco-Friendly Ways to Combat Indoor Air Pollution

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution, but these DIY measures will go a long way toward easier breathing for everyone:

  • Replacing or Cleaning Your HVAC Consider replacing a standard filter with one designed to remove more contaminants. Filters that have deep pleats or are electrostatic are better at trapping more particles, but should also be cleaned regularly.
  • Use Green Cleaning Products. Use environmentally-friendly cleaners in place of those with abrasive chemicals. There are plenty of natural alternatives for cleaning your home, so ditch those that contain bleach and ammonia whenever possible.
  • Allergy-Proof Bedrooms. Encase mattresses, box springs, and pillows in covers designed to keep dust mites and animal dander at bay. Use hot water when washing bedclothes weekly and set to high heat when drying.
  • Vacuum Regularly. Vacuums are great for sucking up dust and dander that settles on carpets, furniture and other household surfaces. If you have carpeting, a full-sized model is ideal for deep cleaning and typically comes with HEPA filters.
  • Ventilate and Clean Air Ducts. All indoor pollutants can be exacerbated by poor home ventilation, so it’s a good idea to regularly have your home’s ducts cleaned by a professional. You can also improve ventilation by equipping kitchens and baths with ventilation fans to remove moisture which can lead to mold growth. To avoid structural damage, all ventilation fans should be vented to the outside, not to the attic or crawl space.

Remove Indoor Air Pollution with an Air Duct Cleaning

The steps above are great ways to combat indoor air pollution, but sometimes you need a professional to take your DIY tactics to the next level. In particular, air duct cleaning requires special equipment and trained technicians to do a thorough job for optimal results. Instant Air is here to help. Contact us today by calling (702) 385-2665 to learn more about our air duct cleaning services, book your appointment and get one step closer to breathing easier!




Why You Should Consider an HVAC Replacement in Las Vegas Now


You work hard for your money, so you’re careful about how you spend it, especially on a major investment like a new HVAC Replacement for your Las Vegas home.

So now you want to run through that list of motivators just one more time – as you should. Let an authoritative third party, the U.S. Department of Energy, lead the way. Then allow the most reliable and trustworthy HVAC company in Las Vegas, Instant Air, cushion this investment with a $1,000 summer end discount.

When it’s Time to Consider a Replacement

No matter what the brand, most HVAC systems are rugged and durable. But even when they’re well maintained and tuned up once a year, they will not last forever. As machinery, they have a definite lifespan. If you’re considering an HVAC replacement in Las Vegas, the department of energy says “the writing is on the wall” when:

  • An air conditioner is more than 10 years old.
  • The furnace or boiler system is more than 15 years old.
  • The system is breaking down more frequently, requiring repairs.
  • Your energy bills keep going up while your usage has remained constant.
  • Some areas in your home are too warm, too cold or too humid.
  • Your home is excessively dusty.

Why Fall is the Best Time for an HVAC Replacement in Las Vegas

Some Las Vegas residents question the wisdom of investing in a new HVAC system at the end of summer, assuming they will miss out on taking advantage of its cooling power since the hottest days of the year are behind them. The second part of this statement is probably true, but it should be weighed against some compelling realities:

  • Fall is the hottest time of the year for discounts, such as Instant Air’s Summer End Closeout deal. This $1000 discount off all HVAC units can put a replacement within financial reach for homeowners on a strict budget.
  • Fall is typically a slower time for HVAC companies – between the hottest days of summer and coolest days of winter – so homeowners can usually find more convenient scheduling.
  • Fall is a time of more moderate temperatures in Las Vegas. Most systems can be installed in less than one day, but if you have to be without your HVAC system while a new one is being installed, fall is the time to be without it for even a short time.
  • Fall obviously arrives before the end-of-year holidays, when many people understandably declare a “time-out” on home spending because so much of their money is targeted for gifts, parties and other special purchases.

Schedule Your HVAC Replacement in Las Vegas

At Instant Air, we know you work hard for your money – and we want to help you keep more of it. But just as all the 100-degree days will soon be a thing of the past, the $1,000 Summer End Closeout won’t last forever, either. Call Instant Air at (702) 385-2665 and schedule your HVAC replacement in Las Vegas while this offer remains hot.