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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.


  • 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.



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.

The Ultimate Las Vegas Home Maintenance Checklist

Most homeowners have a “honey-do” list, even if they penned it themselves.

But when the outdoor temperature is equivalent to that of an oven, you may look at that list and think, Honey, there’s no way I want to do anything outside.”

With windows usually closed and lots of dust accumulating inside, there are plenty of indoor home maintenance tasks needing your attention. You’ll feel productive – and breathe easier, too – when you shake the dust off your list and:

  • Check your air conditioner filter. If it’s clogged with dirt – and it probably is if it’s been a few months since you took a good look at it – replace it with a new one. A dirty filter undercuts the efficiency of your air conditioner and can even cause it to shut down. Some of that dust travels right through the ducts and into your home, too.
  • Clean out your dryer vent. A clogged vent wastes energy and forces your dryer to run longer. Worse, it can pose a fire hazard.
  • Vacuum the coils on your refrigerator. Brace yourself for the moment you move the refrigerator away from the wall. If it’s been a while since you tackled this home maintenance task, you may be startled by the dust, dirt and crumbs you’ll find. Removing it all will help ensure the compressor doesn’t falter.
  • Dust your ceiling fans. And be prepared for the clumps of dust you’re bound to find. Spread a drop cloth on the floor unless you are planning to mop or vacuum when you’re done. You can stop some of the dust from flying by cleaning the blades with a dryer sheet (because the dust will cling to the sheet). Since kitchen ceiling fans can be magnets for grease and grime, plan to clean the blades with a de-greaser after you remove the dust.
  • Clean and deodorize your mattress. You may be wondering, “Is there really dust in there?” Health experts say that since dust is ubiquitous and penetrating, you can count on it. You also breathe the dust every night, so remove the mattress cover, vacuum the mattress and sprinkle baking soda over the top. Let it settle in so it can remove any odors before vacuuming again.
  • Restore the full functionality of your keyboards. Turn older ones upside down first to shake free the loose particles that have fallen inside. Then spray compressed air around the keys before following up with a disinfectant wipe.

Dusting Off Your Las Vegas Home Maintenance Checklist

Like many of the home maintenance tasks above, going on a “dusting spree” will inevitably expand in scope. Make the most of your gathering steam and:

  • Use dryer sheets or microfiber cloths instead of paper towels to get a grip on dust.
  • Work from the top down in a room so you only need to vacuum or clean the floor once.
  • After you’re finished dusting, restore a shine to surfaces (except wood) with a 50-50 mix of vinegar and water.

Lastly, cover your bases with an HVAC preventive maintenance membership. As you work feverishly on one Las Vegas home maintenance project after another, the last thing you need to worry about is your air conditioner shutting down. Keep your cool and call Instant Air today at (702) 385-2665.