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Family sitting on a couch at home
When it comes to comfort and safety, your furnace might be the most important appliance in your home; it’s also the most costly to operate.
In this second post of a four-part series on getting better performance from your appliances, we will take a look at getting more your furnace so you can enjoy reliable heat and lower bills all winter long.

Five keys to getting more from your furnace

  1. Check the furnace air filter regularly – One of the most important maintenance tasks you have as a furnace owner is to check and replace or clean your air filter regularly. Many manufacturers recommend checking your air filter every three months or so, but we recommend doing it more often – about every 30 days or so, especially if you have pets. This will prevent your furnace from having to overwork to keep your home comfortable.
  2. Get routine heating maintenance every year – A furnace will lose about five percent efficiency each year it does not receive professional heating maintenance. If you want to avoid that performance drop-off and prolong the life of your equipment, prevention is the key.
  3. Weatherize and insulate your home – Make sure your attic and the rest of your home has enough insulation to keep warm air in and cold air out of your home (the insulation in most Connecticut homes – especially older ones – often doesn’t comply with R-Values recommended by the U.S. Department of Energy). Air leaks around doors and windows can be a big problem, too – use inexpensive measures like caulk, weather stripping and door sweeps to keep drafts at bay.
  4. Give your furnace a break with a programmable thermostat – You can cut your annual heating bills by as much as 10 percent per year by turning down the heat when you are out of the house or asleep. Running your furnace less often will also save wear and tear on your equipment, which could prolong the life of your equipment.
  5. Make sensible upgrades – There will come a point when replacing your furnace will be more sensible than sinking money into heating system repair. If your equipment is more than 12 to 14 years old or has been experience a drop off in performance, an equipment upgrade might be the best way to go to get more bang for your furnace buck.

Time for a furnace upgrade? We can help! Contact the pros at Ace-Robbins to get a FREE, no obligation estimate on a high efficiency furnace (or boiler) installation for your northeast Pennsylvania home!
Next week: Tips for your furnace

Energy Kinetics boilers
When it comes to comparing boilers, one measure you’ll hear a lot about is AFUE, or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating. Think of AFUE as you would MPG for your car – the higher the number, the more efficiently your boiler runs.
The problem is that calculating boiler efficiency in real world conditions is much more complicated than simply measuring AFUE performance. To understand true boiler efficiency, you need to consider other factors; we’ll explore those factors in this week’s blog.

Boiler efficiency in the real world

Did you know that you could spend as much as $800 a year more on boiler fuel than a neighbor whose boiler has a nearly identical AFUE rating?
That’s possible because AFUE only measures energy lost to the chimney – which means it doesn’t take into account such factors as:

These inefficiencies – along with poor maintenance and improper installation – can really pad your bill. But there is a way to minimize or even eliminate these problems.

System 2000 – A different kind of boiler

Ace-Robbins features a unique boiler solution for your home – the Energy Kinetics System 2000®, which combines boiler and water heater functions to maximize efficiency in all seasons.
The unique design of the System 2000 significantly reduces or eliminates chimney, jacket, idle, and draft regulator loss, cutting your bills by hundreds of dollars every year. The System 2000 also heats water up six times faster than most water heaters.
A System 2000 boiler – sized, installed, and serviced by an expert Ace-Robbins technician – is an investment in your home comfort that will pay for your family for years to come.
Contact Ace-Robbins today for a FREE estimate on a System 2000 for your Northeastern Pennsylvania home!

Money in wallet
Yes, we know it’s summer – which means that replacing your home heating system is probably the last thing on your mind.
But what if we told you that if you acted now, you could save hundreds of dollars on a heating system upgrade – and up to 40 percent on your heating bills once your oil-fired furnace or boiler is installed?
With that kind of improvement, your new equipment could pay for itself in just a few short years!
Thanks to the Upgrade & Save Pennsylvania Energy Efficiency and Safety Rebate program, you could get up to $500 when you replace or upgrade an existing oil furnace or oil boiler to a higher-efficiency model*
Upgrade & Save PA rebates are available on a first-come, first-served basis and for a limited time only, so don’t delay – order your heating equipment today! Contact Ace Robbins for a FREE, no obligation estimate on a new boiler or furnace for your Pennsylvania home.
* Some restrictions may apply. Limit of one rebate per household.

lower Energy Bills
Well, we’ve past the midpoint of October, which means that cold weather – and your early season heating bills – will soon be on their way.
If you want to keep those bills as low as possible – and keep your heating system running as reliably as possible, especially when you need it most – try these tips:

  1. Weatherize – You pay to warm the air in your home, but air leaks around external doors and windows could be sending that heated air right back to the great outdoors. Installing inexpensive caulk and weather stripping around window and doorframes, along spaces surrounding window AC systems and your dryer vent, and other gaps in the exterior of your home is a great investment both comfort and efficiency. It will reduce wear and tear on your equipment, too.
  2. Reverse your ceiling fans – Ceiling fans do a great job circulating air in your home – the question is how to get it to circulate it in a way that keeps you comfortable in any season. When your ceiling fan is running counterclockwise, air is pushed down to create comfortable temperatures and evaporate moisture off your skin – a great way to cool down during summer. In the winter, you want to reverse the direction of the fan to push rising warm air back down into the room. See your fan’s instructions for reversing the direction of your ceiling fan.
  3. Change your filters regularly – If you have a forced-air system (one with a furnace and vents), be sure to check your filter regularly – especially if someone in the house smokes, or if you have furry pets. Clogged filters can cut your heating (and cooling) efficiency dramatically; over time, they can even cause the equipment to fail due to unnecessary overwork. Check them at least once a month and replace them when needed.
  4. Insulate – The majority of homes – especially older homes here in the Northeastern US – are under-Insulated. Energy Star recommends 12-15 inches of good insulation in your basement, attic, and crawl spaces.
  5. Install a programmable thermostat – Dropping the temperature by 3-4 degrees for eight hours a day can shave 10 percent or more off your monthly heating bill. A programmable thermostat makes it easy to do that, automatically dropping your settings when you go to work or sleep.
  6. Insulate your water heater – Why pay to heat your water more than once? That’s exactly what you’re doing if you don’t insulate your water heater. As your water heater’s storage tank sits in your cold basement waiting for your next shower or load of laundry, the water within it cools down and has to be re-heated for use. You can slow that “standing heat loss” by insulating your water tank.
  7. Get routine maintenance – Nothing will help your equipment running better for longer than making sure your system gets a regular annual tune-up from an expert. It’s one of the best investments you can make in your home comfort – one that will easily pay for itself during the course of a heating season.

Want to make an even better investment? Sign up today for an Ace-Robbins Service Plan for your heating oil- or propane-fired heating system. You’ll get a tune-up, priority service, repair discounts and more. Contact us today to learn more!

System 2000  efficiency boiler
When it comes to efficiency, not all boilers – not even boilers with the same AFUE rating – are created equal.
That’s because AFUE only measures the efficiency of the boiler itself. It doesn’t consider all the other ways that energy is lost while delivering heat to your home, including:

However, there is one type of boiler that overcomes many of these problems to keep fuel efficiency up and bills down: the System 2000 by Energy Kinetics.
If you’re looking for one of the most innovative heating systems around, the System 2000 fits the bill, providing heat for your home’s air and water from a single unit while delivering exceptional efficiency performance.
The unique design approach of the System 2000 reduces chimney, jacket, idle, and draft regulator loss – and as a result can significantly cut your bills. With such a powerful heating element, it will also heat your water faster than a conventional boiler will – and it runs quieter than just about any system we install.
Our manufacturer-certified technicians install and service these great units every day, so they’ll know exactly what to do to get the most out of a System 2000 system in your home. They’ll install the unit quickly and correctly, with no repeat visits.
Interested in a System 2000 for your Pennsylvania home? Contact Ace-Robbins today for a FREE, no obligation estimate!

 High Efficiency Models Heating equipment – especially furnaces and boilers – are a big investment for any homeowner: they’ll keep your family comfortable and safe all winter long, and if you maintain them properly, they’ll probably do it without a hint of complaint for a long time.
But like any machine, your furnace or boiler will eventually run out of steam (literally, in the case of a boiler) – and when it comes time to replace your home heating equipment, it could be a blessing in disguise.
Why is that? Because today’s high-efficiency heating systems can drastically cut your annual energy costs while improving your comfort.
They can cut your energy costs so much, in fact, that that your new furnace or boiler will pay for itself in just a few years – especially when you consider great rebates that can save you up to $500 when you replace your oil heating system and storage tank.
Whatever size and type of home heating system you have, Ace Robbins can help you save money up front—and reduce your fuel bills for years to come.
Contact us today to learn more about rebates that could save you hundreds on a new heating system for your Pennsylvania home!

heating and cooling repairs
The average household spends around $2,000 or more on energy bills on an annual basis. This is according to the DOE or the U.S. Department of Energy. Half of that amount is attributed to home heating and cooling. A programmable thermostat may help you save some cash. Here’s a few tips to help you.

Learn How The Thermostat Works

image of homeowner using programmable thermostat in Dallas PA A study from the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab discovered that more than half of Americans never change default settings on their thermostats. This is because they don’t know how to do it. This is shocking because thermostats come with guides and instruction manuals. Those with the internet can easily look up tutorials on programmable thermostats. You will not be able to lower your energy expenses if you don’t know how your thermostat operates.

Energy Saving Mode

When nobody is at home, you can set the thermostat to energy saving mode. When you’re not using your system to cool or heat your home, then the energy saving mode is a good option to use. For example, it’s recommended that you dial down your thermostat during the winter.  This can be achieved by going down 5-8 degrees when you are not going to be in your home for a few hours during the cold weather. Similarly, you can turn up your thermostat 5-8 degrees during the summer. You can also stick to the same range in the evening time. By doing this, you will lower your energy bill because you’ll be reducing your energy consumption.

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Use Hold Or Vacation Features Properly

Unless you plan on going on vacation or being away from home for a bit of time, then don’t use the vacation or hold feature. This will actually lead to energy inefficiency if you do this on a regular basis. You can avoid this issue by setting your thermostat a few degrees lower when you are away from the home in the wintertime. Setting your thermostat a few degrees higher in the summer will help too. Feel free to use the feature on the weekends, especially if nobody is going to be home.

Avoid Temperature Swings

Don’t raise and lower your temperature settings by a large margin. Doing this will not result in your home being cooled or heated faster. The only exception to the rule is if a thermostat is equipped with recovery features. These types of thermostats are designed to reach the pre-set temperature at the time that was set. It’s still a good idea to monitor the thermostat’s performance because this will help you figure out the best way of heating or cooling your home adequately.

Thermostat Inspections

Perform regular thermostat inspections to make sure it is working the way it should. If the thermostat’s display indicates low battery, then change the batteries right away. Remember, if a thermostat doesn’t function properly, then you won’t lower your energy expenses.

Multiple Heating & Cooling Zones

Most households only have one thermostat. However, some homes benefit from using multiple programmable thermostats. This is a good idea because you can accurately customize your heating and cooling. Hire a professional to install additional thermostats because they will adhere to regulations and standards pertaining to electrical engineering.

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Programmable Thermostat Dallas PA

If you want to reduce your domestic energy consumption, then install a programmable thermostat. Generally speaking, this kind of thermostat can reduce annual energy bills by up to $180. In order to enjoy these kinds of benefits, then learn how your thermostat operates, use the vacation & hold features properly, create multiple zones for heating & cooling and don’t make extreme thermostat setting changes. Always make sure your thermostat is working properly.
Ace-Robbins offers affordable and professional heater and air conditioning services. We also install programmable thermostats which will allow you to start reducing your energy costs. All of our HVAC contractors are NATE certified which means that, when you hire us, you will be working with a contractor that has the best training available in the industry. We have been in in the heating and cooling industry since 1961 with a proven track record of satisfied customers.
We service Dallas PA 18612, Harveys Lake PA 18618, Kingston PA 18704, Lehman PA 18627, Luzerne PA 18709, Plymouth PA 18651, Shavertown PA 18708, Shawanese PA 18654, Wyoming PA 18644, and surrounding areas.
Ace-Robbins is proud to be a Mitsubishi Diamond contractor. This means that we have successfully qualified to meet the standards that Mitsubishi has set forth to receive this designation. Such a designation is based on training, professionalism, and a high standard of customer service. When you call us, you know that you are in good hands. Click here to learn about our Mitsubishi products.

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Contact us today or give us a call at (570) 836-3232 if you have any questions.

how to make your home more energy efficientAll homeowners want an energy efficient home. As the cold winter months pass by and the warm weather arrives, it is important to do a few things to achieve a home that uses less energy. We want to point out that heating and cooling makes up for over half of domestic energy consumption.
What does this mean for you? It means you can save a lot of cash in the long run, as well as the short run by making improvements around the home. In this article, we will explore ways that homeowners can make a huge difference on their energy bills.

Learn More On The Benefits of Maintaining Your Air Conditioning

Making Your Home Energy Efficient

The only way you’ll make your home truly energy efficient is if you know where your energy is being wasted. For example, around 25% of energy is wasted via gaps and holes around door frames and windows. When cold air leaves the home, then warm air makes its way inside. This means that the cooling system has to work much harder. Remember, 25% of the cold air that escapes will get replaced with warmer air. In turn, the air conditioner will have to cool down that air. These gaps and holes can lead to uneven temperatures throughout the home. Therefore, the overall comfort level can decrease. Not only that, but your monthly energy bills will start to increase.

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Detecting Air Leaks

If you want to detect drafts and air leaks in your home, then hire a professional HVAC contractor. The sooner you detect and seal leaks, the sooner you can start to lower cooling costs. Contractors have the experience, tools, and equipment to help them find air leaks. However, if you don’t want to hire a contractor, then there are a few DIY options at your disposal.
image of energy efficient home and air conditioning tune up in Scranton PAAn incense stick is all you need to detect air leaks. Simply light it up and bring it around to the high risk areas in your home. These areas include door frames and windows, as well as other outlets. If everything is fine, then the smoke should go upwards and disperse as it reaches the ceiling. However, if the smoke goes inwards then there’s a chance you have an air leak somewhere in that area. To make things easier on yourself, mark the areas that have leaks and after you’re done with your inspection, then you can go back and seal them up.
Look for cobwebs too. Spiders like to be near areas where there is a little bit of air flow. If there are cobwebs present, then you probably have an air leak nearby. Don’t forget to mark the areas where there are suspected leaks and then go back to seal them.

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Sealing Your Home

There’s a number of ways to seal leaks. You can use weather stripping, spray foam, or caulking. Feel free to use the cheapest material you can find or the one that is easily available to you. If you are not comfortable or confident in your ability to seal leaks, then don’t hesitant to hire a professional. A contractor can inspect your entire home and then seal areas where there is a leak present. You can save money by sealing leaks, so it is worth hiring a professional HVAC contractor. Plus, they will get the job done right the first time around and they will get things done fast.

AC Tune-Up Scranton PA

After you remove drafts in your home, you should still call a heating and cooling contractor. They can inspect your air conditioning system and perform an AC tune-up. This, too, will improve the energy efficiency in your home and lower cooling costs. Give Ace-Robbins a call today and let our NATE certified HVAC contractors perform the work your AC system needs. Call now to speak with one of our home comfort specialists.
We service Kingston PA 18704, Luzerne PA 18709, Plymouth PA 18651, Wilkes-Barre PA 18701, Wyoming PA 18644 Chinchilla PA 18410, Clarks Summit PA 18411, Dickson City PA 18519, Elmhurst PA 18416, Moosic PA 18507, Old Forge PA 18518, Olyphant PA 18447, Peckville PA 18452, Scranton PA 18501, Taylor PA 18517 and all surrounding areas.

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Contact us today or give us a call at (570) 836-3232 if you have any questions.

image of an air conditioner repair and HVAC contractor in Meshoppen PAEvery homeowner needs to find a reputable and highly trained air conditioning technician. This is due to the fact that their HVAC system is quite complex and requires regular tune-ups, check-ups and repairs.
Unfortunately, many homeowners face some challenges when looking for the right technician for their air conditioning repair or maintenance needs. Many homeowners claim that it is hard to find one because they are unsure of what they are looking for. Here are a few things to consider when looking for a heating and cooling expert:
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Training And Certification

You need to ensure that your technician has the relevant industry-specific training. Additionally, he or she must have acquired a certification from respective state certification boards. Since certifications vary from state-to-state, you need to know the regulations in the state that you live in. However, there are nation-wide certification regulations that will apply to all technicians regardless of the state in which they practice. For example, all technicians receive an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certification issued after passing an EPA approved examination. Only consider a technician who has at least the minimum state insurance coverage.

Continuous Education

Technicians who continuously update their education are aware of the current industry trends such as energy efficiency. In addition, continued education allows technicians to be updated on the most recent regulations governing their practice. Technicians who are not updated on current issues in air conditioning are out of touch with the industry requirements and standards which will directly impact your home if you were to hire them.
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Experience

AC unitIt is advisable to hire only experienced HVAC technicians who have a considerable amount of hands-on experience. Technicians are required to have a specified period of experience before they get the kind of certification needed by certain states. Ask whether the technician is full-time or part-time. Part time technicians are less experienced compared to full-time technicians since their ideal day has fewer hours. So, be sure to consider this factor first. When evaluating the amount of experience, be sure to consider the actual man hours spent. Do not focus on the calendar years one has been working as a technician.
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Expertise

For beginners, experience is completely different from expertise. Expertise refers to the skill of a technician. It varies from one technician to another. You can find out the expertise of your technician by checking the recommendations and testimonials from online reviews from people who have had an experience with the professional. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a good online rating platform from which you can check or ascertain the expertise of a technician. Although expertise comes with higher prices, you pay for what you get in return.

Reputation

Reputation is the track record that clients have with the technician. Some of the things to look for include the ability to communicate, attention to detail, honesty, and the level of professionalism. A cooling technician with a good reputation has the ability to create and maintain lasting customer relationships with his or her clients. You can always ask for references as well. A reputable HVAC contractor will gladly give you some. Check the references to be sure of the technician’s reputation.

Air Conditioner Repair Meshoppen PA

When retaining an air conditioner technician, be sure to review all the above. This includes experience, expertise, continuous education, training, and certification. Do not base your evaluation of the HVAC contractor on the price of the service since price may sometimes not reflect the quality of service you will receive in return.
Ace-Robbins offers professional air conditioning services that will keep your cooling system working efficiently and effectively. When you maintain your air conditioner, it will last a long time and it helps prevent costly repairs. Be sure to contact us when you need to service your unit. We have been in in the HVAC industry since 1961 with a proven track record of satisfied customers.
We service Dimock PA 18816, Laceyville PA 18623, Lawton PA 18828, Mehoopany PA 18629, Meshoppen PA 18630, Rushville PA 18839, Springville PA 18844, and surrounding areas.
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Contact us today or give us a call at (570) 836-3232 if you have any questions.

attic insulationWhen the weather turns cold, many homeowners start making preparations. When they begin to experience chilly drafts in their home, then they start thinking about their insulation. However, proper insulation is important not only during the cold winter, but also during the heat of summer. It can provide an effective barrier against outdoor temperatures. During the winter, it helps keep cold air from entering your home. When summer comes, it can help keep the heat out.
Of course, it’s not hard to forget about your home’s insulation. This is especially true because insulation is hidden in the attic or behind walls. You know the old adage, “out of sight, out of mind”. It’s much more than a catch phrase in this situation. An attic that has been properly insulated will ensure that the home’s cooling system is protected. It does this by minimizing the amount of wear and tear that is placed on the HVAC equipment. AC and heater equipment work harder when insulation is insufficient. With good insulation, your A/C certainly won’t have to do as much cooling. Spring is a great time to assess the amount of insulation in your attic. Make sure that there is enough to keep it cool during the long hot summer months.
Learn How To Reduce Drafts To Reduce Energy Costs

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Why Put Insulation In The Attic?

insulation and AC maintenance in kingston paWhen your attic isn’t properly insulated, you’re just wasting money. You might question why insulate a part of your home that is not used or is only used for storage. The answer is quite simple. Proper ventilation and sufficient insulation are key factors in controlling temperature and moisture levels in your home. This is true regardless of the season.
Heating and cooling your home generally account for approximately half of the energy used in your home. Heated and cooled air escapes through your attic. Therefore, you need to make sure that your attic is properly insulated. You need to check the condition of your insulation. Make sure you have the correct R-Value for your area. If necessary, upgrade accordingly. In many homes, the amount of heated or air conditioned air that escapes through the attic can be as high as 20%. When you upgrade or add to your attic’s insulation, it can help reduce energy costs.

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Check Existing Insulation For Its R-Value

If you want to know if you have sufficient insulation in your attic, you’ll need to check your current insulation for its R-Value. The R-Vale is a measurement of the insulation’s ability to resist heat transfer. You can go up into your attic and check your insulation’s R-Value yourself. However, heating and cooling professionals, who work with insulation on a daily basis, will be able to easily determine this for you. The R-Value of your insulation can decrease if the insulation is old, sparse or even missing in some places.

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You should have insulation in your attic with a minimum R-Value rating of 30. If your attic has insulation that is blown-in, then it needs to be a minimum of 8.5 inches covering the floor of your attic. R-Value is a cumulative measure. Therefore, it is perfectly acceptable to install new insulation right over your existing insulation. When you add new insulation, make sure that you also reinforce the insulation around windows, attic doors, and any other openings.
At the same time that you are evaluating your current insulation, be sure to inspect your home’s ductwork. Consider wrapping your ducts when they are not wrapped with insulation. This helps with reducing loss from your air conditioner and heating system.
 

Air Conditioning Maintenance Kingston PA

When you perform these simple measures, you’ll be able to significantly reduce your home’s energy bills during both the summer as well as the winter. Additionally, you’ll get even more benefit from taking these steps because your HVAC system will not have to work so hard. This can help ensure maximum life expectancy from your equipment. This is another excellent way to save money. Of course, it can also reduce unnecessary repairs. If you’re ready to go above these measures, schedule an annual air conditioning tune up for your HVAC system. This is an important part of air conditioner maintenance.
When you need air conditioning services or heating services, be sure to call the professionals at Ace-Robbins. Our HVAC contractors are certified and therefore, have the skills that are required to make your home more energy efficient and comfortable. Be sure to give us a call today to discuss your home heating or cooling needs with one of our specialists.
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Learn More About Our Heating Service Plans
 
We service Dallas PA 18612, Duryea PA 18642, Kingston PA 18704, Lehman PA 18627, Luzerne PA 18709, Pittston PA 18640, Plymouth PA 18651, Shavertown PA 18708, Wilkes Barre PA 18701, Wyoming PA 18644, and surrounding areas.
Contact us today or give us a call at (570) 836-3232 if you have any questions.