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Archive for August, 2014

The Very First Labor Day Celebration

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Labor Day as a federal holiday, held on the first Monday of September, has been with us now for 120 years. President Grover Cleveland signed the law that made Labor Day a national holiday in 1894. Ever since then, the three-day weekend has provided people in the U.S. with the opportunity for vacations, time with their families, shopping trips, and a general celebration of the conclusion of summer and the beginning of fall.

However, there were twelve years of Labor Day observations in the U.S. before it became an official holiday. The first Labor Day celebration took place in 1882 in New York City on September 5. According to the accounts from the time, it had a rough start and almost didn’t happen.

The main event planned for that first Labor Day was a parade along Broadway that was to start at City Hall. However, the parade ran into a bit of a snag early on. The marchers started to line up for the procession around 9 a.m., with a police escort to make sure the event went peacefully. However, the problem of the day wasn’t rowdy members of the parade—it was that nobody had remembered to bring a band!

With people ready to march, but no music to march to, it started to look like no parade would happen at all, and the first Labor Day would have ended up a failure. But just in time, Matthew Maguire of the Central Labor Union—one of the two men who first proposed the celebration—ran across the City Hall lawn to the Grand Marshal of the parade, William McCabe, to inform him that 200 men from the Jeweler’s Union of Newark were crossing the ferry to Manhattan… and they had a band!

At 10 a.m., only an hour late, the band from Newark walked down Broadway playing a number from a popular Gilbert and Sullivan opera. They passed McCabe and the other 700 marchers, who then fell in line behind them. Soon, the spectators joined in, and an estimated 10,000 to 20,000 people marched through Lower Manhattan.

According to the New York Times, “The windows and roofs and even the lamp posts and awning frames were occupied by persons anxious to get a good view of the first parade in New York of workingmen of all trades united in one organization.”

The parade concluded two hours later when the marchers reached Reservoir Park. But the party was only getting started. Until 9 p.m., some 25,000 people celebrated with picnics and speeches and beer kegs. It was an enormous success, and all thanks to the speedy arrival of jewelers carrying band instruments.

If those musicians from Newark hadn’t shown up, perhaps we wouldn’t have the holiday opportunity that we now have every year. However you celebrate your Labor Day, our family at Comfort Flow Heating wishes your family a happy end of summer.

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Upgrades to Consider During Air Conditioning Installation

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

When you install a new air conditioner for your home, you will likely receive a system with improved energy efficiency over your older system. However, you don’t have to let the benefits end there. As part of installation, you can choose some additional upgrades for your HVAC system to improve performance and increase energy efficiency.

Comfort Flow Heating has performed air conditioning installations in Springfield, OR for more than 50 years. We know many ways to upgrade your AC system that help you get the most from your cooling.

We’ve listed some of your options below; to find out more, contact one of our cooling specialists today.

New Thermostat

If you’ve had your current air conditioner for more than 10 years, you probably have an outdated thermostat controlling it. If you still use a manual thermostat, now is the time to switch to a more precise digital model. If you already have a digital model, you can upgrade to one with programmable features that will allow you control the temperature even when you are away from home. A new thermostat will make your life easier, your comfort better, and your utility bills lower.

Zone Control System

With a central air conditioning system that uses ductwork, you must cool down every room whenever the AC turns on. But installing a zone control system into the ventilation changes that. Dampers placed into the ductwork and connected to separate thermostats allow you to shut off cooling to different areas (“zones”) of the house, saving you money and allowing individuals to adjust the temperature in their area to their needs.

Heat Pump

This is an upgrade for your whole system, and for your comfort during the whole year. Instead of putting in another standard air conditioner, you can choose to install a heat pump. A heat pump works the same way as an air conditioner—except that it can reverse the direction that it moves heat and bring heat into your home. So it works as both an air conditioner and a heater, packed into one unit. It works more efficiently than most heaters as well.

Comfort Flow Heating can install all of this and more for your air conditioning installation in Springfield, OR. We also strongly recommend that you sign our Energy Savings Agreement, which will delivery you annual maintenance for both your air conditioning and heating system to make sure they work in prime condition for many years. We offer 1-, 2-, and 3-year agreements, so you can select the plan that best suits your budget. In addition, the Energy Savings Agreement provides a 15% discount on repairs, 24-hour emergency service, and priority customer scheduling.

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Why Would I Consider a Geothermal System?

Friday, August 15th, 2014

A geothermal heat pump takes up a large amount of space compared to a standard (or “air-source”) heat pump or the combination of an air conditioner and a heater, such as a furnace or boiler. Geothermal systems also require a longer period for installation and have higher upfront costs. So why should you consider going with a geothermal heat pump rather than one of the numerous alternatives?

There are many good reasons that a geothermal system should be on your shopping list for a new comfort system. The benefits that these appliances provide help them pay back their initial costs many times over, both in savings and in dependable comfort. To find out more about the possibilities for geothermal installation in Eugene, OR, call the professionals at Comfort Flow Heating. We’ve helped customers find the best way to heat and cool their homes since 1961.

The Advantages of Going Geothermal

  • Dependable performance: Standard heat pumps have a major drawback that sometimes prevents homeowners from installing them: they suffer from efficiency loss during extreme weather conditions. The colder it is outside, the harder it is for a heat pump to extract heat from the outdoors and bring it indoors. The hotter it is outside, the less efficiently a heat pump can release heat to the outdoors. But geothermal heat pumps use the steady temperature 10 feet below the frost line to extract and deposit heat. At this depth, the earth remains around 55 degrees no matter the temperature above ground—you won’t have to worry about your heat pump struggling during any time of the year.
  • Energy savings: Using the steady temperature of the earth also means that a geothermal heat pump will need to use less power on average than an air source heat pump. The U.S. Department of Energy has discovered through testing that ground source heat pumps can work 3 to 6 times more energy-efficiently than other types of heating and cooling systems, and they will pay for their installation costs in 5–10 years.
  • Longevity: You will have many years after the payback period to enjoy the savings of a geothermal heat pump, because few comfort systems have such long lives. The indoor heat pump elements of a geothermal system will last 20+ years (with proper maintenance), while the underground loops, the most expensive part to install, can last for 50+ years. Chances are that you won’t ever need to install another comfort system once you have a geothermal heat pump working for your home.

Geothermal heat pumps won’t work ideally for every property: they require the right amount of space, soil conditions, and temperatures. Call up our specialists in geothermal heating and air conditioning installation in Eugene, OR today to arrange for an appointment to survey your property. Comfort Flow Heating will find out if geothermal is your best choice, and then handle the installation quickly and effectively so you can benefit from decades of efficient and reliable heating and cooling.

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What Are the Benefits of Duct Cleaning?

Friday, August 8th, 2014

“Out of sight, out of mind” could be applied to many homes’ ductwork. Not seen, and hopefully not heard, your ductwork is the hidden highway in your home that delivers cool air throughout. But, as with other parts of your air conditioning system, dust, dirt and debris can collect in your vents, decreasing indoor air quality and increasing the stress on your system. Do you know the last time you had your ducts cleaned? If not, it may be time to schedule a duct cleaning with Comfort Flow.

Why Call for a Duct Cleaning?

All kinds of things can take up space in your ductwork: dirt and dust, small debris, pests (both animal and insect), mold, mildew, fungi – there can be a whole world in there. And as long as it stays there, it will continue to blow directly into your home.

What Happens During a Duct Cleaning?

It typically takes less than a day to clean your ductwork. When the technician arrives at your home, s/he will thoroughly inspect your entire system. Specialized access tools are used to open the ductwork, and a large, truck-mounted vacuum is attached to the openings. This first pass with the vacuum is to remove the build-up of dust and dirt. At this point, the technician may use visual aid tools, such as a periscope, to re-inspect the inside for any clinging particles. If found, pneumatic devices and/or scraping tools will be used to remove these particles, which will be vacuumed by a hand-held, professional HEPA vacuum. Once the ductwork is cleaned, your technician will inspect and clean all the household registers. Collection devices are used for the removal of all the particles of your system. Any problems found with your ductwork, such as broken seals, excessive mold growth or the presence of leaks, will be reported to you (repair work is not typically done during a duct cleaning) for further action.

Benefits of Duct Cleaning

First, duct cleaning helps make your air conditioning system more efficient by removing build-up that can contribute to air flow restrictions. Second, it helps improve the quality of your indoor air, and third, it helps improve the comfort level in your home.

Ducts should be cleaned every 3-5 years, so if it’s been a while since yours have been cleaned, call Comfort Flow Heating and schedule your duct cleaning in Salem today.

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How Do Air Conditioning Repairs Improve Energy Efficiency?

Friday, August 1st, 2014

During the summer, you’re used to seeing your energy bills go up and up. But you may have unusually high bills if you allow air conditioning repair needs to go unaddressed for too long. Air conditioning works by removing heat from a home and releasing it outdoors. This process repeats over and over again until your home reaches the desired temperature. If a problem interferes with heat exchange, however, your air conditioner will have to run for a longer period of time and work a lot harder to reach this temperature. When your air conditioner cycles for too long, you use a lot of energy even though your home may never be able to reach the set temperature with some problems.

Types of AC Repairs that Can Improve Efficiency

There are many problems that can cause your air conditioner to consume a lot of energy. Here are some of the repairs that can improve the efficiency of your air conditioner.

  • Frozen Evaporator Coil: The evaporator coil freezes when there is reduced airflow in the indoor portion of an AC. This coil helps to remove heat from the air, so any hindrance reduces its ability to transfer heat. Repairing a frozen coil restores efficiency, allowing the heat exchange process to take place uninterrupted.
  • Thermostat Issues: Replacing a faulty thermostat is another way to improve efficiency. Sometimes, wiring issues can cause the air conditioner to short cycle, or your home may never reach the set temperature. A new digital thermostat can not only solve these problems, but may also have more features than your older model.
  • Fan Motor Problems: As refrigerant cycles through the indoor evaporator unit of your AC, a blower fan moves indoor air over the evaporator coil and distributes cool air throughout your home, while an outdoor fan helps refrigerant to condense and dissipates heat outdoors. A broken fan motor may cause a fan to turn too slowly, and repairing or replacing the part can keep air moving through your unit and into your home.

Don’t let repair needs go unexamined for any longer. For air conditioning repair service in Springfield, OR, call Comfort Flow Heating today!

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