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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Is bigger really better?

As it pertains to business in the world of hvac, bigger definitely does not mean better.  Here at Environmental, we have always had to bid against the unlicensed, uninsured fly by night guys and the larger mechanical companies.  So naturally, as with any small business, you really have to dig deep to form a trusting relationship with your customers that will keep them coming back to you because they know that your business will always take care of them.  The trouble with these larger companies is just that, they often overlook the needs of some customers because their client base is so large that it's really no big loss for them to lose a customer here and there for whatever reason.  That's really where the big advantage for smaller businesses begins, our ability to spend more time focusing on each customer's needs and getting things right the first time around.

We are full believers in the idea that if you sell quality products and services that you can always compete with the "big boys".  Your business's actions and efforts will speak for themselves.  People want to know that the company they use for their hvac needs is going to stick around for the long haul and not be gone tomorrow.  Environmental Heating & Air of NC has been around for almost three years now with a wealth of experience and there are no signs of slowing down!  So come and check us out online or swing by the store at 210 High House Rd. in Cary, we would love to hear from you.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Who can you trust these days?

When it comes to having strangers in your home to do home improvement work, you want a company or business whose employees you can grow to trust. A great, trusting business relationship starts with the small things; communication, punctuality, and that extra initiative taken by the company or business even when it's not needed.  This goes without mentioning the obvious; reliability, discount prices, and your sense of value to that company or business.

"When trust exists in an organization or in a relationship, almost everything else is easier and more comfortable to achieve"--Susan M. Heathfield

I'm not trying to bore anyone out there with this info, I'm just trying to emphasize the seriousness of a business/client relationship.  When a company trusts and treats it's employees with high regard, great things are going to happen all around.  The customers stay happy and the structure and bond that holds a reliable and successful business together remains strong.  So which would you rather have come and work on your heating and air system, a sullen and downtrodden looking person who has no interest in listening to you?  Or an upbeat, knowledgeable technician who cares about your opinion and will take his/her time in explaining things to make sure you understand?  I know my choice would definitely be the latter, and I'm sure yours would be the same!


Friday, October 22, 2010

How A Heat Pump Works

Have you ever wondered about what makes a heat pump a heat pump?  Well, I'm here to tell you it's not as complicated as you may think.  This blog will be a crash course on the heat pump and how it works, and also the key things to remember when it comes time to replace your current system.

  1. A heat pump is a device that uses a small amount of energy to move heat from one location to another
  2. Heat pumps are usually used to pull heat out of the air or ground to heat a home or office building, or they can be switched into reverse to also cool a building
  3. Heat pumps are a unique kind of heating system because they can do the work of both a furnace and an air conditioner
  4. Heat pumps can also work extremely efficiently, because they simply transfer heat rather than burn fuel to create it
  5. Heat pumps work best in moderate climates
  6. If you live in a moderate climate, using a heat pump instead of a furnace and air conditioner can help you save a lot of money on your utility bill
  7. Remember that most heat pumps are somewhat limited in the cold, so it is important that you learn which kind of heat pump is best for your area before installing one in your home or office building

Now, given that our climate(central North Carolina) is considered moderate, when you go to look into replacing your system it might just be worth your while to go with a heat pump  To find out more just give us a call!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Repair or Replace Your Heating & Air System?

The decision to repair or replace your heating and air system can be a difficult decision to make without knowing all the facts.  Questions like, how old is my system?  is my system leaking?  will replacing my system now be more expensive than the cost of repair for the next couple of years?  I have included a great article that covers these issues and gives some great advice for this all important decision.  Like I said before, this is great info for you the customer, so read and take heed.

Repair Vs. Replace

Is your heating and cooling system not running optimally? You could be wasting money. Is it circulating low quality air through your home, and consuming more energy than necessary? Try calling a professional contractor to help you upgrade your HVAC system if;
  • Your air conditioning unit or heat pump is older than 10 years.
    • Replacing an old system with a new high-efficiency unit that uses the eco-friendly R4 10A refrigerant should translate into big savings. Depending on what you're replacing and what you replace it with, you can save up to 50% on your cooling costs.
  • Your boiler or furnace is older than 15 years.
    • You might want to install a new high-efficiency furnace. They are at least 15% more efficient than conventional furnaces and typically, the older the system, the less efficient.
    • Looking at a boiler? Standard models are 5% less efficient than a high-efficieny boiler.
  • You  frequently repair equipment and your energy bills cintinue to climb. (Doesn't everybody's?).
    • With all these repairs, your cooling and heating equipment may have become less efficient. It might be time to consider AC and heating system replacement.
  • You have rooms in your home that are too hot or cold.  Any of these could be the cause:
    • Improper equipment operation
    • Duct problems
    • Inadequate insulation
  • There is no one home for long periods of time. Do you have a programmable thermostat?
    • From basic to touch-screen, a good contractor can install and instruct you on a programmable thermostats use. Start saving energy and money while you're away or sleeping.
  • You notice more dust than usual in your home.
    • Distributing air through your house with poorly sealed ductwork may be pulling particles from attics, crawl spaces or basements while also congesting your equipment. Check out our Indoor Air Quality section to get educated on the subject.
  • You hear your air conditioner or heater running, or frequently kick on and off.
    • Undersized return air or ductwork could be the problem. Maybe it’s the indoor coil of your cooling equipment.

This article is from http://www.acdoctor.com/pages.php?pageid=120

I hope this great article was helpful, and as always if you have any questions don't hesitate to call us!



Friday, October 15, 2010

The roof is on fire

So, my boss and Environmental Heating & Air owner Chris Montana, has decided to find out first-hand how well some of the new solar products we have here at Environmental work by installing some solar panels and a hot water heater on the roof of his house.  He asked yours truly to help out and I was excited because I wanted to see myself how this whole solar installation process goes down.  Well, within just a couple of hours of starting we already had the manifold and cyclonic vacuum tubes installed, no problem!

Installing these solar products has given us the chance to be able to better describe the processes and the ins and outs of the installation process.  For example, when installing these solar products on your roof you have to be very thorough with sealing any and all screw holes made on the roof.  This is actually the most important thing to remember, if you don't do a good thorough sealing job you can end up opening a whole different can of worms with leaks in your roof which will obviously cause severe water damage if not immediately recognized and corrected.  Bottom line is that this whole process is fairly easy and inexpensive and it will end up saving you a ton of money in the long run, not to mention this kind of stuff is the future!  The entire hvac industry is migrating towards alternative energy so the sooner you start the better off you will be!  Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Season o' the sniffles

The Fall season brings with it the changing in color of the leaves, the sniffles, and turning your clock back one hour.  One easy thing to remember for this time of the year, and this is just a suggestion, is when you turn that clock back one hour(this happens on November 7th @ 2 a.m. this year), go ahead and change the batteries in your smoke detectors and thermostat(s).  We've actually encountered situations where a customer calls us to come out because their system has stopped working, only to find out that the batteries in their thermostat have died!

Speaking of the sniffles, the flu has already started rearing it's ugly head this year.  The Center for Disease Control has reported that the common flu will be as strong as ever this year and the H1N1 virus will also be continuing to infect people.  The CDC recommends getting the flu vaccine as soon as it becomes available in your area.  A great thing to also help combat illness this season is purchasing a UVC Light to be installed in your current heating and air system.

Treating air that passes through an HVAC unit with ultraviolet light will reduce, or eliminate DNA-based airborne contaminants (bacteria, viruses, mold spores, yeast, protozoa), and provide much healthier air to breathe.  Direct exposure to 254nm UVC radiation, given appropriate exposure time, will inactivate the DNA and RNA of microorganisms.  They are fairly easy to install and do wonders for fighting and preventing illness in your home, especially if you live in a household with multiple people.  So all this being said, I wish you a healthy and sniffle-free fall and winter season!



Monday, October 11, 2010

Is Your Heating & Air Company Legit?

Sure, this new hvac company you've found offers you way cheaper prices than any of the other places in town, but is it a legitimate business?  Are they licensed with the town in which you reside?  These types of unlicensed, shade tree operations are a fairly common occurrence here in the Triangle area and you have to be careful that they won't leave you high and dry.  You have to consider "How much is this going to cost me?" People advertise things like "the lowest prices in town”, “We’ll beat any estimate”, “No job too small or No job too big", “We'll fix any problem" or “We can do it all”.  This sounds very good and maybe they really do know this profession that well, but in reality if they are the lowest price in town and can beat any estimate they may not have a Privilege License, proper insurance or bonding.  You also have to consider if they will be in business for possible warranty work required in the future.  Also, when done properly it costs money to protect you, the consumer.

Before doing business with any “company”, verify if they are registered, licensed, bonded and insured. Additionally find out how long have they been in business.  Reputable service people and companies are easy for you to contact. They should have a business card or photo identification, business address, phone, fax line, cellular number, e-mail address and maybe even a website that you can contact them through.  If you think paying a professional is expensive, you will be shocked to see how much an amateur will really cost you in the end.  Below I have provided a link for you to do an easy check to see if the business is legit, this is the official North Carolina licensing website.  Just type in the name of the business where it says 'Business Name' and then hit 'Go' and it will present a list of licensed businesses with that name in North Carolina.



Wednesday, October 6, 2010

President Obama Goes Green!

The latest news coming out of the White House indicates that President Barack Obama has opted to go Green!  A great new article published on cnn.com reports that solar panels and a solar hot water heater are being installed at the White House.  The announcement comes on the one-year anniversary of an executive order signed by the president that called on the federal government to lead in the establishment of a clean energy economy.  Read more about it from the following article from CNN:


This is huge news for the world of alternative energy and the future of energy usage in America.  The times are changing folks and the sooner you know about it, the better off you will be.  Even doing something as simple as hanging your clothes on a clothesline instead of using a dryer is a step towards energy independence.  Solar energy is successfully being used for cooking, cooling, heating, communications, driving spacecraft, lighting and many more purposes.  According to scientists, the Earth receives more energy in just one hour from the sun than the entire populated world uses in one year!  If you are curious about the steps needed to cross over into energy independence with your hvac system, check out our website and/or give us a call.  We'd love to hear from you!



Monday, October 4, 2010

John The People's People Person

There are three keys to being successful as a salesperson in the business world:
  1. Take care of the customer
  2. Take care of the customer
  3. Take care of the customer

Everybody knows the classic salesperson; pushy, persistent, annoyingly friendly, and just an all around bad person.  Now, try to imagine a salesperson that you would be comfortable speaking with; likely honest, to the point, and easy on the eyes.  Well, when the knowledgeable and incredibly down-to-earth John Van Orden crossed paths with the owners here at Environmental, magic happened!  John is a family man with great business ethics, he is super nice and yet has no fear of being brutally honest when it comes to informing you about prices and special deals, and that's why we love him! 

Whenever we get customers who come to us because they are disappointed with their current heating and air company, which by the way happens quite often, they always say that the salesperson they talk to just seems interested in getting the commission and pays no attention to what they are saying and asking.  Purchasing a new system can be a fairly large expenditure and you should get every penny's worth in comfort from it.  That's where our salesman John comes in!  So go ahead and give us a call and fire any questions you have at him, 919-535-8422, or simply ask on here and I promise I can have you an answer in no time!



Friday, October 1, 2010

Now is the time to make sure your heat is going to work!!

Now if you haven't done so already, it's the perfect time to flip that thermostat on over to heat and make sure your heat is going to come on properly.  The absolute WORST thing you can do is wait until the temperature dips way down only find yourself with a fault in your heating system and you're freezing your butt off waiting for the heating and air guy to get to your residence!


Winterizing your home
  1. As mentioned in a previous post, remember to check your air filter(s) and change it if necessary.  The cleaner the filter the less work your system will have to do, thus getting peak efficiency from your system!
  2. Get a carbon monoxide detector!  Even if you have a fairly new system it never hurts to have one, they are pretty cheap these days and it's a small price to pay to protect you and your family's lives!
  3. This one may sound a bit ridiculous but nonetheless important, make sure all vents are opened and unblocked by furniture or other items. This will ensure that the air is evenly distributed through the home.
  4. When it does actually start getting cold and you've got your heat running, try reversing the switch on your ceiling fans so they blow upward. This is especially valuable in high ceiling rooms where heat that naturally rises is forced back down into the room.
  5. Finally, if your heating system is old, you might consider updating it. A pre-1977 gas furnace is probably 50 percent to 60 percent efficient today.  Modern gas furnaces, on the other hand, achieve efficiency ratings as high as 97 percent!  Replacing an old heating system can cut your natural gas use nearly in half!
I hope these tips will help you out in preparing for this up and coming winter, stay toasty my friends.