Renaud Electric Blog
With winter temperatures on us, don’t forget to take care of your heat pump. Check your filter and keep it clean so your system can move air easily. Your heat pump (outdoor unit) will be defrosting. If it is in a walkway be careful since ice can form from the runoff.
It is easier for your heat pump to maintain temperature rather than have to raise the temperature 8 or 10 degrees when you get up or get home. If you like a cooler house at night try a 4 or 6 degree difference from your waking hours.
You bought your heat pump to be comfortable. Find the temperature you are comfortable. There is no magic to keeping the temp at 70 when you feel cold. Bump it up a degree or two to see if that is what it takes to be comfy.
Here is a first-hand account from our Technician Matt of adding an Air Scrubber air cleaner to a home.
When it is hot out you don’t want to hear, “No A/C.” Here are some easy to check items to increase your comfort and efficiency.
Check your filter. Have you forgotten to check your filter? Our techs have arrived at “no cooling” calls to find nothing more than a clogged filter. If it has been a while since you have cleaned or replaced your air filter, DO IT NOW. A clogged filter will reduce the airflow throughout your house. It will cause the coil in your air handler to become a great big ice-ball. The ice-ball will overtax your drain causing unwanted leaks from the air handler. Keep your filter clean.
Set your thermostat in the morning. Keep your thermostat set at a comfortable level. You are not saving money waiting until you get home in the afternoon or evening to cool your home. It takes more energy to lower the temperature 5 or 10 degrees in the evening than to maintain a constant temperature all day.
Set Your Temperature to Your Comfort Level. You bought your heating and cooling system to be COMFORTABLE. The only “right” temperature is the temperature that makes you say, “AAAHHHH.” You have lowered your carbon footprint, your energy usage and your electric bill with your heat pump. Stay comfortable!
Regular Maintenance Safeguards your Comfort. Trane recommends heat pumps be serviced twice a year. A heat pump works all year long both heating and cooling. An AC unit works in the summer and rests over the winter. So regular maintenance by a trained technician, once in the heating season and once in the cooling season is the best way to keep your heat pump going for years and years. The tech will deep clean your coils, check all the components, check refrigerant levels and calibrate or reprogram your thermostat if needed.
You have the power to be comfortable, no matter what the weather outside.
Some new rebates for programmable thermostats and ductless heat pumps have started this spring. What a great way to upgrade your system or your home.
Bonneville Power Administration is offering a rebate through local PUDs and Energy Trust of Oregon for residential smart thermostats beginning April 1, 2017. Several PUDs are rolling out these rebates over the next few months. Clark PUD began offering rebates for thermostat upgrades April 1. Cowlitz PUD will begin offering the rebate May 1.
Here are main requirements:
- 7 day programmable or learning –based scheduling
- Wi-Fi enabled, with remote access
- Occupancy detection (e.g., motion sensor, geo-locating) which results in automatic HVAC reduction when home is unoccupied
- Independent of manufacturer evaluations(s)
- Must have heat pump auxiliary heat control and optimization
Currently two thermostats meet these requirements, the Nest and the Ecobee3 by Ecobee (Ecobee3 Lite does not qualify).
We carry the NEST thermostat and our techs have this leading edge technology in their vans ready to install.
Nest Learning Thermostat Programs itself. Then pays for itself.
Nest learns the temperature you like when you’re home. And turns itself down when you’re away. It controls half your energy bill – more than appliances, more than electronics.
It automatically adjusts the temperature after you leave. So you don’t heat or cool an empty home.
Change the temperature from anywhere using your smartphone, tablet or laptop.
Know more, save more. Check your Energy History on your phone to see how much energy you use and why.
Know you’re saving energy. Look for the Nest Leaf when you change the temperature.
Just turn it up and down. It learns the temperatures you like and programs itself.
Nest learns how your home warms up and keeps an eye on the weather to get you the temperature you want when you want it.
From NEST Brochure - In independent studies, the Nest Thermostat saved about 10-12% on heating bills and 15% on cooling bills. Nest has estimated average savings of $131 to $145 a year.
Lewis County PUD Raises Ductless Heat Pump Rebates
On April 17th 2017 Lewis County PUD raised their rebates for ductless heat pumps. In the past the rebates were $800.00. Now with a grant from the Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board the PUD is offering a $2500.00 rebate on ductless heat pumps. There is also a $5000.00 rebate for low income families. This low income status is determined by total household income. Renaud Electric Heating & Cooling can assist you with determining your eligibility for these generous rebates from Lewis County PUD.
Getting Started With Nexia™
The heart of a Nexia smart home system is the Nexia Bridge. The 1050, 850 and 824 Controls are built with the Nexia Bridge inside. Stand-alone versions of the Nexia Bridge are also available (see below). These products contain the Z-Wave® technology that will speak to and connect with other Z-Wave products you can use to manage, monitor and automate your home.
It’s like taking your home with you.
Being connected to your home with Trane and Nexia™ will give you all the control you’ve been looking for in heating and cooling. With simplicity and ease from anywhere, your home is at your fingertips. With Trane’s innovative controls, you can make it a warmer winter or cooler summer from most web enabled devices, like your smartphone. Remote Climate Access is included at no additional charge with every Trane Connected Control*. And that means there is one for every home, starting with yours.
Come home to your ideal home environment with Nexia.
There’s so much more you can do when you’re connected to your home. Like easily changing the temperature before you arrive or if you forgot to set it before you left. Or reduce costs by setting up a schedule or putting your comfort system into an energy savings mode when you’re away. Plus, you can enjoy the convenience and security of text and email alerts. The possibilities are practically endless with Trane’s Nexia-enabled controls.
You’re always up-to-date.
Upgradable software comes standard with all of our Nexia-enabled controls so you’ll be current with all of the latest innovations available.
Trane ComfortLink™ II XL1050 Zoning Control with built-in Nexia Bridge combines zoning technology and a home automation hub to remotely control your home, comfort, and energy use. It’s easily accessible from a smartphone, tablet or computer, which makes adjusting the temperature for your family’s comfort a breeze.
Trane ComfortLink™ II XL850 Control lets you control your ComfortLink communicating system’s energy consumption from anywhere in the world with any internet-enabled smartphone, tablet or computer (Nexia Remote Climate Access is included with the purchase of a connected control). Adding accessories to your Nexia smart home system requires a monthly subscription for remote access via most web-enabled smartphones and computers. Requires internet service and connection to Nexia. Remotely control your home too, thanks to the built-in Nexia Bridge.
Trane XL824 Control helps you reduce your heating and cooling system’s energy consumption with any internet-enabled smartphone, tablet or computer* from anywhere in the world, and thanks to the built-in Nexia Bridge, you can remotely control your home too!
Nexia is also compatible with Z-Wave® devices. Z-Wave® is a registered trademark of Zensys Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.
Did you have to sit down when you opened your PUD bill this winter? With the prolonged cold weather we used a lot of energy to stay warm, and to stay comfortable was even more expensive! Today’s heat pump technology has some great options to decrease your energy usage and increase your comfort.
If you need a reliable, efficient solution for heating and cooling, a heat pump, ducted or ductless, is right for you. As the name suggests, heat pumps move heat from one place to another. Even in air that seems cold, heat energy is present. When it’s cold outside, heat pumps extract outside heat and transfer it inside. When it’s warm outside, they reverse this process to push unwanted heat outside.
Trane Heat Pump Systems
For an already ducted home a Trane variable speed heat pump gives you precise comfort by running at the exact speed needed to keep your home comfortable. This allows the variable speed compressor, outdoor fan, and indoor fan to vary operating speed and BTU as the temperature outside changes, slowing down or speeding up gradually in as little as 1/10 of 1% increments to keep comfort within 1/2° of the thermostat setting.
Variable speed is not new technology. Trane was the first in the industry to apply variable speed technology to residential air conditioning. Trane is now taking Variable speed technology to the next level of comfort and efficiency, with systems that intuitively adjusts to changing heating and cooling needs, working only as hard as it has to and often at lower, more efficient and quieter speeds.
Trane’s variable speed heat pump systems eliminate uncomfortable temperature swings by staying within 1/2° degree of your setting. By automatically reducing its output capacity and through longer run times, variable speed heat pumps operate at more efficient, quieter speeds rather than cycling on and off to maintain your desired comfort settings.
Mitsubishi Ductless Heat Pump Systems
Mitsubishi ductless heat pump systems are another option to take advantage of variable speed heat pump technology. Mitsubishi ductless heat pumps have a variable speed compressor, outdoor fan, and indoor fan to vary operating speed. Mitsubishi ductless heat pumps use this cutting edge technology to provide unmatched energy efficiency, performance and control to home cooling and heating. The great advantage of a ductless system is no ductwork. The cool or heat is sent directly into the room you want to heat or cool. None of the heat or cool is lost as it travels through ductwork. Installation is less obtrusive with only the need for installing copper refrigerant lines between the indoor and outdoor units. There is no need to give up closet space or storage space in the attic. It’s never been easier to keep everyone in your house comfortable, without spending a fortune on your energy bills.
Whether you have a single uncomfortable room, you’re renovating your entire house, or you’re building a home from scratch, Mitsubishi ductless heat pumps can fit your unique needs. Because ductless systems focus on individual living spaces rather than treating every room the same, it’s more customizable, more energy efficient and easier to install.
When it comes to installation of this great technology, manufacturers recognize that not all companies are the same. Today’s heating and cooling manufacturers seek out dealers willing to go the extra mile and stand behind their work. Trane has their “Comfort Specialists” and Mitsubishi has their “Diamond Dealers.” Renaud Electric has been awarded both of these distinctions. Renaud Electric Heating & Cooling has taken the time to insure our customers have had a top tier experience. Trane and Mitsubishi Cooling and Heating have recognized the level of service Renaud Electric Heating & Cooling provides our customers with Trane Comfort Specialist and Mitsubishi Elite Diamond Dealer awards. With the Comfort Specialist award we are now a proud heating and Cooling partner with the Seattle Seahawks. When investing in this great heating & cooling technology it is always good to work with the best.
When those stormy nights come, a standby generator from Generac or Briggs & Stratton will keep the lights on when your power goes out. It is a great way to wait out the storm.
When Renaud Electric installs a standby generator we are installing peace of mind. We make sure the pump in your water well is still pumping, septic tank keeps operating, lights and TV stay on, and even your big energy users like an electric water heater or your cooktop will be available.
We will take care of the installation from start to finish. Whether you use natural gas or propane, we will assist you with the properly sized generator to keep the lights on in the worst weather. Our installers are factory trained so you can be assured that your new generator is installed to factory specifications.
This is year round work for Renaud Electric. We are installing new generators every day. It is not a sideline for us. Generac has deemed us their go-to company for service as well as sales in Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington.
A Trane heat pump is an important consideration when you are planning to build a new home this next year. While much of what you will be planning is the visual aspects of your new home, a Trane heat pump will create the feel of your home.
Today’s building codes are such that you will have a nice home when completed. Today’s code while important, is the minimum requirements for construction. Building above code to seek higher energy efficiency will be of value for over the life of your home.
While it might be hard to imagine the feel of your home, we all know that a drafty and cold room is no place to live life. A properly sized system and properly designed duct system will give you even heat without drafts.
At Renaud Electric Heating & Cooling we take the time to do a heat loss calculation based on your blue prints. This calculation takes into account:
- Size and volume of each room
- Insulation levels in floors, walls and ceilings
- Window insulation values
- The climate
- The direction the house is sitting in relationship to the sun
Some heat pump installers will have their own methods and just wing-it, never a good sign. Trane notes:
“The duct system has a significant impact on system performance and plays an integral role in determining how comfortable your home is from room to room. When properly designed and installed, a duct system can maximize comfort and minimize energy use… Install a properly sized duct system with registers and grilles that deliver air quietly and evenly.”
We live in a region that is perfect for heat pump technology. While we have a few winter days of cold, cold weather and a few summer days of hot, hot weather, it is actually a pretty mild climate. Combine our mild climate with low electrical rates and you have a great equation for a heat pump.
Call Renaud Electric Heating & Cooling, 30-423-1420, when you begin planning your new home. We will assist you in creating that warm homey feeling in your beautiful new home.
It is rare for a home to require the same amount of heating and cooling all over the house. In fact, it’s probably not a reality at all. Fronts, backs, first floors, second floors, basements, attics, each space has unique needs based on the home’s size, windows, insulation, doors and even the home’s position towards the sun. In the past, it has been difficult to improve these differences. Homeowners were simply required to accept the fact that some areas of the house would be comfortable, while others would not.
Up until the last few years, the only option for modern heating and cooling was a ducted central HVAC system. The reality of the uncomfortable home was normal. In recent years, however, there have been noteworthy advances in heating and cooling, including zoning.
A zoned home is divided into spaces based on each area’s need for conditioning. Rather than being dependent on on a single unit to heat or cool the entire property, multi-zoned homes utilize a network of small, energy efficient units and thermostats to send the right amount of conditioned air to each zone. This allows homeowners to have room-by-room control.
- Homes with two or more stories
- Homes with finished, livable basements
- Rooms that get blocked off in the winter or summer because of comfort issues
- Rooms with large windows or high ceilings
- Large families that often find themselves battling over the thermostat
- Older, historic homes in which traditional ductwork is implausible
Zoning Provides Room-by-Room Comfort Customization
The number of zones a home can profit from will depend on its size and layout. In some cases, a single zone can cool or heat an entire floor. In others, a multi-room system would be used to divide the home up into several temperature control zones. The greatest benefit of zoning is the level of customization that can be achieved. You can heat and cool only the zones in use, which not only improves personal comfort, but reduces overall energy consumption and costs.
While ducted HVAC systems can be “zoned”, they never quite attain the same level of customization and accurate control that is possible with a ductless system. When every segment of the house is manageable by its own unit, it means that every room of the home and every family member in the home can achieve total comfort, no matter the time of day or time of year.
Rebates and special financing makes today the right time to replace or add a new heat pump to your home. Trane is offering their “Big Game Promotion” with rebates as high as $2000 or special financing up to 48 months (Call office for details). Local PUD’s are also continuing with great rebates that add to the value. Federal Tax Credits, which many of Trane’s heat pumps qualify, are scheduled to end on December 31, 2016. A Trane split system is a great enhancement to your home.
- Mitsubishi Ductless Heat Pumps
Ductless heat pumps also offer great value. A smart upgrade to wall, baseboard, or radiant ceiling heat is a ductless heat pump. You can upgrade your homes heating system and add air conditioning for those hot summer days without the expense of installing ductwork.. For over 20 years Renaud Electric has been installing the highly reliable Mitsubishi ductless heat pumps. Mitsubishi has instant rebates on their systems. The local PUD’s have seen the energy savings that ductless heat pumps produce and continue to pay rebates to homeowners on new installations. The Federal Tax Credit applies to Mitsubishi ductless heat pumps as well as Trane ducted systems. These tax credits are all scheduled to end on December 31, 2016.
When you add a Trane or Mitsubishi heat pump to your home you can expect lower PUD bills and greater comfort. Not only will they heat your home, a heat pump system will also cool your home and provide greater air circulation and cleaner air. We offer flexible credit union financing that gives you the ability to take advantage of these great offers now at an affordable monthly price.
Give us a call today at 360.423.1420 or click over to our contact page and leave us a message. We will set up an appointment with you to explore your greatest comfort with the greatest savings.