Design Comfort Blog: Archive for the ‘Indoor Air Quality’ Category

What Is an Energy Recovery Ventilator?

Monday, August 24th, 2015

At Design Comfort, we don’t think that our valued clients, yourself included, should have to choose between great comfort and great energy efficiency. However, because modern homes tend to be so tightly sealed in an effort to protect efficiency levels, there is one important facet in the overall comfort equation which frequently suffers: indoor air quality. Simply put, the failure to sufficiently ventilate your home is going to lead to problems with the quality of the air therein. As you may have guessed, though, we have a solution to share with you. Consider the use of an energy recovery ventilator in West Jordan, UT. If you decide, after reading the following information, that an ERV is right for, dial our number to schedule exceptional ERV services.

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Could I Benefit from Using a Whole-House Humidifier?

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

It can certainly get very warm around here in the summer season, with highs commonly rising past the 90° mark. What we typically don’t have in the summer season, though, is a whole lot of humidity. This is beneficial in a way. After all, you’ve surely heard the old adage that it’s not the heat which gets you, but rather the humidity. However, having too little humidity is equally problematic, a fact that many homeowners may fail to realize. If you have insufficient levels of humidity in your home, further exacerbated by your AC drying out the air in the summer months, then give us a call. Design Comfort is happy to outfit your home with a quality whole-house humidifier in Taylorsville.

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Should I Be Using an Electronic Air Cleaner?

Monday, June 22nd, 2015

While you are correct in believing that successful temperature regulation is a major part of living comfortably throughout the year in your home, you must remember that this is really only a single facet in the larger pursuit of true comfort. Just as important to your comfort, and to your health as well, is maintaining high indoor air quality throughout your home. There are a lot of different ways in which your indoor air quality may suffer, and it is vital that you are properly equipped with the appropriate systems to overcome any problems that you may encounter.

One common option is the use of an electronic air cleaner. If you think you may benefit from the use of an electronic air cleaner in Salt Lake City, UT, contact Design Comfort today.

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Should I Buy UV Germicidal Lights or Not?

Monday, May 18th, 2015

Maintaining comfortable temperatures throughout one’s home all year long is fairly straightforward when compared with maintaining great indoor air quality. Sure, there are many different types of heating and air conditioning systems, but the basic principle is the same: heat up your home when it’s cold out, cool it down when the temperature rises. With your indoor air quality, though, there are many different factors to consider, including the nature of any problems itself. That is why you must hire a Salt Lake City, UT indoor air quality specialist if you hope to successfully counteract any problems with the quality of the air in your home. Call Design Comfort today to do so.

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What Are the Benefits of an Energy Recovery Ventilator?

Friday, September 19th, 2014

Proper ventilation is important for good indoor air quality. But how do you maintain proper ventilation while your air conditioner is running? A great solution is an energy recovery ventilator, aslo known as an ERV. Not only can you properly ventilate your home with an ERV, you can do so efficiently. An ERV is added to your air conditioning, so the upgrade is easy and seamless, and Design Comfort has the indoor air quality experts you need for professional installation.

What is an ERV?

An ERV is a ventilation system that allows you to exchange your stale indoor air for the fresh outdoor air – but it does more than that. The heat exchanger, which is at the core of the ERV, not only exchanges the two streams of air, it also pre-treats the incoming air with the energy from the outgoing air. During the summer, the incoming warm, humid air is cooled and dehumidified by the outgoing stale, cool indoor air. In winter, the cold, dry, incoming air is warmed and humidified by the outgoing warm, stale air – but the two airstreams never meet, so there is no worry about contamination. The result is fresh, continuous, incoming air that is pre-cooled (or heated), which gives your AC a big reduction in its work load.

What Are the Benefits of an ERV?

There are several benefits to installing an ERV:

  • Better indoor air quality – with a continuous stream of fresh air, you are assured of having healthy, clean air indoors all the time.
  • Better energy efficiency – when your air is pre-cooled (or pre-heated), you air conditioner has less work to do, which can mean less energy usage.
  • Longer lifespan for equipment – less work for your AC also means less wear and tear, which can help extend the lifespan of your system.
  • Improved moisture control – an ERV dehumidifies the fresh air before it can enter your home or system, which helps improve moisture control.

If you’ve been looking to improve both your indoor ventilation and energy efficiency, an ERV may be just what you need. Call Design Comfort today and schedule service for your ERV in Salt Lake City with one of our indoor air quality specialists.

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Indoor Air Tip: What Type of Air Cleaner is Best for People with Pets?

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Lots of people in Salt Lake City have pets, and they are a great addition to your family. However, pet ownership has one very obvious drawback: dander. The fur, dry skin cells and other debris that pets carry around flakes off their bodies and onto your furniture and rugs. That also means they inevitably wind up in your air, recirculated through your whole house via your HVAC system.

Or at least, that’s what happens if you don’t have an air cleaner or some sort of air filtration system. This leads many pet owners to ask, “What is the best air cleaner for me?”

With all the choices in air cleaners, the choice can seem daunting. If the goal is specifically to filter out pet dander, it becomes somewhat easier.

Pet dander is quite large in size relation to other indoor air pollutants, so many air cleaners are equipped to do the job. You can use an air cleaner with a standard pleated HEPA filter, or one that uses electrostatic technology. You will want to make sure that the HEPA filter is rated to handle pet dander. A MERV rating of 8 or more is recommended.

Once you have an air cleaner installed, make sure to change or clean the air filter frequently, in accordance with manufacturer instructions. A clogged air filter won’t help eliminate pet dander from your household air and can actually degrade the operation of your HVAC system’s air handler.

In addition to installing a high quality air cleaner with a HEPA filter, you can also help reduce the amount of pet dander floating around your home by keeping the place clean. Vacuuming often and dusting hard surfaces weekly keeps pet hair and dander from being drawn up into the HVAC system, which reduces wear on the air cleaner.

If you have more questions regarding which air cleaner is best for you Salk Lake City home, Call Design Comfort today! Over the years, Design Comfort has been building a loyal clientele throughout the Salt Lake City area.

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Tip: Control Your Home’s Moisture – Humidity Is Key

Monday, October 8th, 2012

Most people in Salt Lake City don’t give a second thought to humidity until it is either much too high or uncomfortably low. And if you have a state of the art home comfort system, you’re probably comfortable inside all year long anyway. But there are several reasons to pay attention to the humidity level in your home and take action if you realize that it isn’t providing the comfort level you’ve come to expect.

Many problems arise from excess or inadequate indoor humidity levels. For instance, a lack of humidity causes your skin and nasal passages to dry and crack, which is obviously pretty unpleasant. But air that’s too dry can also make the symptoms of allergies, asthma and colds worse. Anyone in your home suffering from these conditions will be much more comfortable when the right level of humidity is restored. Another great benefit is that the indoor air quality will no longer contribute to longer and more sever colds and flus in the winter.

Too much humidity is a problem too, though. It promotes the growth of mold, which is a big contributor to indoor air pollution. Mold spores are a big time allergen. The more moisture there is in your home, the more mold there’s likely to be. High indoor humidity levels also promote the growth of dust mites, another major indoor air contaminant and allergen.

Of course, you probably have a great indoor air cleaner in place to get all of those contaminants out of your home’s air supply. But if the air inside your home is too moist or too dry, it can actually make it harder for the air cleaner to remove all types of contaminants. Not only are you putting a greater strain on your body and immune system, you’re asking your air cleaners to work much harder, which can cost you money in repairs and filter replacements.

For all of these reasons, it’s important to put in a humidification system to maintain the overall quality of your indoor air. Plus, a properly humidified environment is simply more comfortable to live in. A humidifier can easily be integrated into your current home heating and cooling system, so you don’t have to worry about high installation costs or equipment compatibility. All you have to do is sit back, relax and breathe in the fresh air that your humidification system makes possible.

Contact Design Comfort for any help with your indoor air quality today. Over the years, Design Comfort has been building a loyal clientele throughout the Salt Lake City area.

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HVAC Question: Will My Air Cleaners Reduce Health Risks?

Monday, August 20th, 2012

There is a lot of talk these days about how important it is to have a good air cleaner in your Salt Lake City home. But, do air cleaners really reduce health risks, and if so, by how much?

 What Air Cleaners Do

Before we can say whether an air cleaner has any positive health effects, we must first look at what they do. Air cleaners are designed to remove certain particles from the air inside your home. Different air cleaners are designed for different levels of removal.

Ratings like the MERV of an air cleaner measure how small of particles the device can remove. Additionally, the type of cleaner will determine what it is best at removing. Mechanical filters are the most efficient at removing dust, pollen, and dander while electronic filters are best for smoke, bacteria and mold spores.

So, What Impact Does this Have on Health?

The big question then is what kind of health benefits you will gain from a high end air cleaning system. If your home isn’t prone to a large number of contaminants and you have good ventilation, the difference may not be that big, but for those with a well-sealed home, pets, humidity problems or any number of other indoor air contaminant sources, an air cleaner has a tremendous impact on your health.

The problem is that when the house gets sealed up so tightly, we put our bodies at risk of contamination from gasses and pollutants that would otherwise dissipate into the air. Those with asthma are put at an increased risk as they breathe in a variety of different triggers like dust, mold and dander.

An air cleaner removes these threats and while they don’t have a proactive effect on your health – you won’t suddenly lose weight or never again get the flu – they can remove many of the negative effects that poor air quality has on your body.

So, should you get an air cleaner for your Salt Lake City home? If you are not sure, give Design Comfort Heating & Air Conditioning a call today!

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HVAC Tip: Seasonal Air Quality Control

Monday, July 30th, 2012

For people who suffer from seasonal allergies, air quality is a key concern. Allergens in the air cause brutal bouts of sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes and even sinus headaches. Even taking refuge indoors will often not assuage these symptoms, as indoor air is often comparable to outdoor air in terms of allergens and overall quality.

That is, unless you take care to control the seasonal air quality in your Salt Lake City home, which can not only help ease the suffering of allergies, but also soothe asthmatics, keep out pollutants and generally promote better overall health.

How do you go about controlling the air quality in your home? To start, try these simple tips:

  1. Vacuum carpets regularly. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter and invest in some allergen suppressing bags.
  2. Keep your vents clean. This is also a good maintenance practice to lengthen the life of your ventilation equipment.
  3. Dust hard surfaces and wash bed linens weekly.
  4. Install HEPA filters in your ventilation system, such as in air conditioners or other air handler units. Use a higher rated filter to keep out more allergens and pollutants.
  5. Invest in and use an air purifier. Again, make sure to get one with a HEPA filter.
  6. Have your home tested for radon and carbon monoxide. Have smoke, carbon monoxide and radon detectors working properly at all times.
  7. Use a humidifier to keep overly dry air from irritating sinus passages.
  8. Keep doors and windows closed tight, especially during allergy season(s).

By taking charge of the air quality in your Salt Lake City home, you also take control of a measure of your family’s health. Some of these measures require at least a bit of an investment – for example, higher rated HEPA air filters are often more expensive and need to be changed more frequently – but the benefits to your well being and that of your family are clearly well worth it. Call Design Comfort today if you have any questions!

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Happy Valentine’s Day From Your HVAC Contractors!

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Everyone at Design Comfort wishes you a Happy Valentine’s Day! Valentine ’s Day is all about showing your appreciation for your loved ones. Whether it is your significant other, your family, or your friends, today is a great day to let them know how special they are to you. A handmade card, a bouquet of flowers, or even a simple phone call can make someone’s whole day.

If you are thinking about a big gift for your family, an upgrade to your HVAC system might not be the most romantic gift, but it is a gift that keeps on giving! An air filter will keep you indoor air clean, and a new furnace or heat pump will make your home more comfortable and lower your utility bills. Making your home cozier is something your whole family will appreciate!

Call Design Comfort to learn more about how some HVAC system upgrades improve the comfort level in your home. And to make your Valentine’s Day a little sweeter, here is a recipe for Chocolate Covered Strawberries

INGREDIENTS:

16 ounces milk chocolate chips

2 tablespoons shortening

1 pound fresh strawberries with leaves

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Insert toothpicks into the tops of the strawberries.
  2. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate and shortening, stirring occasionally until smooth. Holding them by the toothpicks, dip the strawberries into the chocolate mixture.
  3. Turn the strawberries upside down and insert the toothpick into styrofoam for the chocolate to cool.

For more details, visit allrecipes.com.

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