Do-It-Yourself Tips

Try This Different Air Conditioning System

Try This Different Air Conditioning System

There’s more than one way to cool your home, and it’s not with a traditional window unit or central air conditioning. Ductless split systems cool individual rooms in your home and give you the freedom and flexibility to control a single room’s temperature.
5 Smart Ways to Prepare Your Home for Spring and Summer

5 Smart Ways to Prepare Your Home for Spring and Summer

The grass is green, the days are getting longer, and it’s time for a little spring cleaning! There’s nothing like the sound of the birds chirping to let you know it’s time to freshen up the house and recover from those winter blues that hit Portland.

Preheating Oven

Don't preheat your oven. And try to avoid "peeking" by opening the oven door. Each "peek" can lower the oven temperature by 25 degrees.

Refrigerator Temp

Make sure your refrigerator and freezer are not running too cold. The temperature in your refrigerator should be 38-40 degree F, and the freezer 0 to 5 degrees.

Refrigeration Sealing

Make sure the seals on your refrigerator, freezer and oven doors fit tightly. Easily perform this test by leaving a lit flashlight inside a closed appliance and if you see light around the gasket, replace the gasket.

Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFLs)

Use Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFLs). Standard incandescent light bulbs lose 90% of their energy as heat. CFLs produce only a fraction of the heat and do not waste electricity.

Fans

Use fans in your windows to draw in cooler night air. Close the windows during the day to keep the cooler air in.

Attic Insulation

Insulate attic access and basement trap doors with R-19 insulation. Savings: 1-3 percent of heating/cooling costs.

Ceiling Insulation

Install proper ceiling insulation to at least R-30 standards. Insulate walls, floors and heating ducts, too. Savings: up to 25% of heating and cooling costs.

Storm Windows

Install storm or thermal (replacement) windows. These tightly fitting windows give the benefit of double-pane glass. Air trapped between the two panes acts as a thermal insulator, keeping your heated air inside where it belongs. Be sure to get windows that have the new super-efficient, low-emissivity glazing.