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Top 10 Benefits of Having a Garbage Disposal

Posted on November 16th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Installing a garbage disposal unit under your kitchen sink is an alternative to sending food scraps to the landfill or composting them on your own. The process is simple. Throw your leftovers in, open the tap, and flip a switch; the machine then shreds the material into tiny pieces that can pass through plumbing pipe. Although they last a while, garbage disposal replacement will eventually be needed, but you can count on a licensed plumber for prompt service.

Garbage Disposal

Here are 10 benefits of a garbage disposal for any homeowner.

Saves Time

Disposal of kitchen waste is a faster process. The garbage disposal breaks up food items, so you don’t have to make up the garbage and take it out. That means more time to relax after finishing a meal.

Less Trash

There is much less food waste to throw out, reducing the amount of work. You also use less plastic and paper every day. There is less to get from the store and fewer things to throw out.

Reduced Kitchen Odor

Once disposed of, food waste will not be left in a garbage can to rot. Kitchen odors are, therefore, eliminated. Food is ground up by a motor, and you don’t have to call on local plumbers to find the source of bad smells if they’re not coming from the trash.

Fewer Pipe Leaks

Food scraps are ground up, so there’s less pressure on drainage pipes. You won’t have to call a 24-hour plumber to fix a clog, leak, or burst pipe.

Cost Savings

You’ll save cash not requiring a 24-hour plumbing service as often. The disposal unit helps to improve drainage and protect your pipes. It also avoids spending money on trash bags and other supplies.

Long-Lasting

Although one garbage disposal unit differs from another, they can last a few years. Some last a decade or more. You might spend more with a longer warranty, although that doesn’t mean the machine will last longer.

Protect the Environment

Disposing of your own food waste cuts down on greenhouse gases emitted by garbage trucks, and less methane produced at landfills. Plus, wastewater treatment plants can use it as a source of energy and fertilizer.

Benefits Garbage Disposal

Choice of Models

You can select garbage disposal units that are most convenient for you. Continuous-feed models let you throw things in as it grinds up old waste. With batch-feed models, the stopper must be closed before the blades activate, improving safety.

Useful Features

Depending on the model, you may have an auto-reverse mode to clear jams or higher horsepower motors able to cut up bones and other hard waste. A quick-mount neck speeds installation, and look for safety covers to prevent accidental activation before the device is closed.

Repair by Plumbing Experts

Many plumbing services are experienced with garbage disposal repair and replacement, which is one more benefit of owning one. That means you can rely on the same company that fixes your drain, faucet, toilet, or dishwasher. For professional kitchen plumbing service, you can depend on Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing for prompt service and efficient repairs and replacements. Contact us online or call one of our local numbers to schedule service.

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Reasons Why Texas Should Be Your Next Vacation Spot

Posted on November 10th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Texas is the second largest state in the nation. Within this large expanse, you can encounter a wide array of climates, scenery, and cultures. If you were to venture from one end of the state to the other, you would notice just how diverse the state truly is. Some locals liken the trip as enjoying an extended ride through four different Southern European countries.

Not to mention, depending on the time of year you visit our beautiful state, you can experience multiple seasons all at the same time. For instance, in Northern Texas, in the fall, you are greeted by the changing of the leaves, accompanied by cooler and brisk temperatures. However, if you head to Southern Texas, you can still experience tropical-like temperatures and weather.

Vacation in Texas

Where Should I Vacation in Texas?

Deciding where to visit and vacation in Texas should be based on exactly what type of vacation you want to experience. Texas offers everything from “roughing-it” in the country to five-star luxury resorts in our major cities. Some tourists even do the “glamping” version of camping so they can experience the expansive outdoors while still having the comforts of a five-star resort.

Beach Vacations

You can experience the warm Gulf waters year round all up and down the Eastern seaboard of Texas. Some of the more popular beach vacation spots include:

  • Galveston Island
  • Padre Island
  • Crystal Beach
  • South Padre Island
  • Rockport Beach
  • Port Aransas
  • Boca Chica

Aside from the surf and sand, several of the beaches in Texas feature boardwalks, carnival attractions, and more to keep you entertained.

Beach Vacations

Thrill Vacations

Texas is not short of theme parks and thrills. You can find Six Flags parks in San Antonio and Arlington (near Dallas/Fort Worth). There is also SeaWorld in San Antonio that has thrill rides and plenty to do. After riding roller coasters, you can also experience one of numerous water parks in different cities throughout the state.

If you are traveling with younger kids during the warmer summer months, you can take a break from the heat and check out the LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Grapevine. This is the ultimate indoor Lego® play area, with rides, play areas, indoor theater, and more. Also found in Grapevine, just outside Dallas, is the Great Wolf Lodge resort, which features the nation’s largest indoor water park!

Thrill Vacations

Educational Vacations

If you are looking to expand your culture or want to learn more about the history of Texas, there are plenty of educational adventures to explore. San Antonio is home to the Alamo, as well as the Children’s Museum of San Antonio. If you are looking to explore San Antonio’s culture, you will want to visit River Walk.

Over in Houston, you can visit the Johnson Space Center and Space Center Houston if you want to learn more about space travel, how it works, and the future plans of NASA and private space agencies. Houston is also home to several other attractions, including:

  • The Houston Zoo
  • Houston Museum of Natural Science
  • Houston Downtown Aquarium
  • Houston Military Museum
  • Houston Children’s Museum
  • Houston Fire Museum

If you are visiting Dallas, they also have a zoo, as well as the Dallas World Aquarium, Frontiers of Flight Museums, and the Museum of Nature and Science. If your vacation takes you to Austin, you can experience the Austin Nature and Science Center, Austin Zoo, or the Austin Steam Train Tours.

Just remember, this is just a small sampling of the different types of educational vacations you can experience in Texas. We recommend exploring specific cities and destinations in greater detail to see everything that is available.

Educational Vacations

Nature/Outdoor Vacations

If camping out under big star-filled night skies in Texas sounds appealing, you would not be alone. There are many different types of nature and outdoor vacations for people of all ages and families to experience. Many of these types of vacations are found in West Texas, where there are canyons, desert-like conditions, and mountains; and North Texas, where you will discover the prairie lands.

  • If you are looking to escape the busy cities and want a nice quiet break, you can camp outdoors at Caprock Canyons in North Texas.
  • Over in West Texas’ Texas Hill Country, you can discover Enchanted Rock if you want to go rock climbing.
  • In East Texas, near the Louisiana border, you can experience a camping and canoe vacation at Caddo Lake.
  • If cliff jumping into water sounds like fun, you can check out Jacob’s Well in Wimberley. It is part of the longest underwater caves in the state, Edward’s Aquifer, and here you can cliff jump directly into the first chamber of the cave.
  • Inks Lake State Park in Hill Country is another popular vacation spot you can visit. You can canoe and kayak on the lake, climb rocks, cliff jump, and even discover some of our state’s stunning waterfalls here.
  • Over by Austin, if you are looking a way to escape the summer heat on your vacation to the city, head down to Hamilton Pool. While cooling off, this natural pool will provide you some great views of a collapsed canyon.
  • If you want to explore the canyons of Texas, make sure your vacation includes a hike to the Lighthouse, located in Palo Duro Canyon. This natural rock formation looks like a lighthouse. You can also ride bikes or go horseback riding through the canyons.

As you can see, there are plenty of outdoor and nature adventures waiting for you all through Texas. Again, these are just a sampling of the many others you will discover.

Nature Outdoor Vacations

Foodie Vacations

Texas is a foodie lover’s paradise. Texas is already known for its BBQ. In fact, each region within the state has its own types of BBQ foods waiting to be tasted. Plus, you will find numerous types of chili all across the state at all different “heat” levels, from mild to “five-alarm” bowls.

If you are looking to experience some food from south of the border, Texas offers a diverse selection of Mexican cuisine, as well as our spin on it, which we call “Tex-Mex.” Did you know many of your favorites were created by our Tex-Mex chefs, not in Mexico?

  • Fajitas
  • Chili Con Carne
  • Nachos
  • Chili Con Queso

Even margaritas were invented in Texas, in Dallas, to be precise, before spreading nationwide.

Foodie Vacations

Many of our cities feature different types of “Foodie Tours” you can explore if you want a structured sampling of foods. However, what we highly recommend if you want to eat like the “locals” is to hit up some food trucks and ask us where we like to eat to discover many of our “best-kept restaurants secrets” and flavorful meals most tourists never find.

Locals Can Discover New Adventures, Too

You would be surprised by how many “locals” never consider vacationing in-state. With so many different types of vacations for couples, families, and people of all ages, you do not have to travel far to discover a new favorite destination.

If you like cruising the Caribbean or Bahamas, our cruise ports are expanding and bringing in new cruise offerings from the major cruise lines all the time, including Disney, Royal Caribbean, and Carnival. These cruise lines all sail out of Galveston, and some also sail out of other various Texas ports.

Discover New Adventures

The best part of taking an in-state vacation is you do not have as far to travel, but can feel like you are thousands of miles away! Before taking your next vacation, to ensure you come home to a comfortable home, remember to get your air conditioning system inspected and tuned up by Christianson Air Conditioning and Plumbing.

Feel free to call your nearest location in Austin, San Antonio, Temple, or New Braunfels today! We offer indoor air quality testing and inspections, heating and cooling repairs, heating and air conditioning replacements, new HVAC installations, air duct repairs and installs, and most types of residential plumbing services.

 

Sources

  1. https://www.tripping.com/explore/5-best-family-vacations-in-texas
  2. https://www.theoutbound.com/sarah-vaughn/the-10-best-adventures-in-texas
  3. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g28964-Activities-c52-Texas.html
  4. http://www.onlyinyourstate.com/texas/amazing-beaches-tx/


Prepare for Winter with Replaced Gas Lines & Water Heaters

Posted on October 30th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Even as warm summer weather persists into fall, the cold of winter isn’t far behind. Don’t let mother nature deceive you. It’s important to prepare for winter in Austin, TX before the cold sets in. This will promote comfort, heating efficiency, and lower energy bills, as well as increased safety. Gas water heater repair and other home maintenance tasks should be completed now, so you’re ready for the winter cold as it sets in around San Antonio, TX.

Here is a checklist for preparing for winter, starting with your gas lines and water heaters.

Gas lines:

  • Have them checked for leaks. A rotten egg smell and hissing sound can indicate a problem, which can create a very dangerous situation, so contact a professional for an immediate repair.

Water heaters:

  • Flush the tank so there is no sediment that can cause damage or lead to hot water heater failure during a cold snap.
  • Seek professional hot water heater installation of newer, more energy-efficient models.

Gas lines water heaters winter

Plumbing:

  • Insulate basement, crawlspace, and attic pipes to protect them against freezing.
  • Use heat tape on pipes especially prone to freezing.
  • Roll up and store garden hoses inside the house.
  • Have in-ground sprinkler systems blown out to purge them of freeze-prone

Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning

Gas water heater repair isn’t the only important preparation. Your ventilation and air conditioning system can be the source of many issues that affect your Temple, TX home in winter. Here are a few items to consider in terms of efficiency:

  • Remove window-mounted air conditioners or seal them with insulated liners.
  • Switch fans into reverse to blow warm air toward the floor.
  • Install a programmable thermostat for better heating control.
  • Limit the flow of outside air by sealing duct leaks, installing insulating sheets behind exterior outlets and switch plates, and replacing the damper in a drafty fireplace.
  • If you have a whole house humidifier, clean it and have the evaporator pad replaced.
  • Inspect the firebox and flue system for soot, cracks, and other fire hazards.
  • Clean or replace furnace air filters, which improve air quality and efficiency.

Seal Windows and Doors

  • Replace leaky weatherstripping around doors and doorframes.
  • Replace door and window screens with stormproof materials.
  • Caulk any drafty windows or doors to prevent heat loss.
  • Repair or replace windows with cracks, gaps, or broken glass.
  • Repair or fix rotted or decayed wooden window frames.

Prepare HVAC winter

Professional Service

If you live in Austin, San Antonio, Temple, or New Braunfels, TX, you can ready your home for winter by detecting hot water heater problems early and having professional technicians look for other issues. For example, Christianson can provide expert air conditioning repair or conduct an airflow analysis to detect duct leakage and other inefficiencies. We can repair gas lines and install water heater systems that save energy and stay reliable for years to come.

Protect your home and family, comfort, and wallet. Contact Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing for seasonal or emergency AC or plumbing service.

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7 Reasons Why Texas Should Be YOUR New Home!

Posted on October 16th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

According to a report by the Texas Association of Realtors, Texas is one of the fastest growing states with new inbound residents. The number of out-7 Reasons Why Texas Should Be Your New Homeof-state residents that relocated to the Lone Star state in 2015 amounts to 553,032, yet this was offset by an outflow of 445,343 people.

Yet, this still amounted to a net population increase of 107,689 new residents. In addition, this represents a net gain of 4 percent over 2014, which means a net population increase of 103,465 new residents.

Why are so many people moving to Texas? Let’s take a look at seven of the more popular reasons people are relocating from out-of-state that you may want to add to your “moving to Texas things to know” list.

1.No State Income Taxes

One of the biggest reasons people have on their moving to Texas checklist is that Texas is one of the few states which does not have a state income tax. Rather, the state supplements its revenues from property taxes and the hospitality and tourism industry. In addition, for small business owners, Texas offers several different tax incentives to relocate to or start a business.

2. Texas Has All Four Seasons

Texas is one of the few states that allow people to choose whether they want to live in an area that goes through all four seasons or in milder areas No State Income Texasfurther south. Northern Texans enjoy leaves changing color in the fall, brisk and cold winter mornings, snow, and the beautiful flowers of springtime.

Further south, temperatures can still get chilly in the wintertime but tend to be milder. So, if you dislike snow and cold, then southern Texas is a perfect place to move. Part of the reason why Texans can enjoy all four seasons is also due to having a wide array of ecosystems.

You will find tropical conditions in South Texas. In West Texas, you can enjoy the desert, mountains, and canyons. Over in East Texas, there are bayous and wetlands. Then, in North Texas are green pastures and fields, as well as prairie lands.

You may want to make a note about this on your moving to Texas checklist. This way, you can decide which area of the state appeals the most to you, based on your personal climate and seasonal preferences.

3.The Housing Market Is Booming

Texans were not affected as badly by the housing market bubble bursting a decade ago because Texas has stricter lending rules. These rules help Texas Housing Market Is Boomingprotect home buyers and contribute to the booming housing industry in Texas.

New inbound residents will find they have several different housing options available. New condos are popular in the bigger cities when people want to enjoy busy city life. For others who want a quieter area, there are plenty of existing homes for sale on the market.

You may find getting a new construction loan and building your own custom house to your liking. You do not have to worry, as there is plenty of land for housing, too. The processes to get building permits and milder weather in most areas mean it is faster to build homes in Texas, compared to other states.

4. Most Areas Are Family-Friendly

Many of the inbound out-of-state moves have been families. Not only does the affordable housing and wide range of options attract them, but also the family-friendliness of the majority of cities and communities throughout the entire state. This family-friendliness extends to the LGBT community, too. You will find San Antonio has one of the largest populations of LGBT families, not just in the state, but in the country.

5. Texas Has Six of the Largest Cities in the U.S.

Out of the 20 largest cities in the United States, six of these are in Texas:Texas Largest Cities

  • Austin
  • Dallas
  • Houston
  • Fort Worth
  • San Antonio
  • El Paso

Since many of these cities originally came of age back in the 1960s to 1980s, most are being updated with new buildings, new eco-friendly public transportation, and other updates to make these Texas cities modern.

Plus, most people find Texas has some of the best income-to-cost-of-living ratios for those that like to live in big cities. Unlike other cities, like LA or NYC, where residents may have to work two jobs or share homes, Texans earn enough to cover their city housing expenses.

6. A Large Variety of Sports Teams

While college and professional football are big in Texas, people will find Texas has one of the most diverse and biggest varieties of sports teams. Aside from football, sports fans can enjoy:

  • NBA
  • NHL
  • MLB
  • NFL
  • ECHL
  • Women’s NBA
  • American Hockey League
  • North American Hockey League
  • NCAA Men’s and Women’s Sports
  • Champions Indoor Football Leagues
  • United Soccer League
  • National Women’s Soccer League
  • Major League Soccer, and More!

You can catch games being played year round, based on the sports season, so you will always have a team to cheer on.

7. The Food

Texas is home to some of the most authentic cuisines in the country. From Tex Mex and chili to breakfast tacos and BBQ, you will find this the Food in Texasbirthplace of many of your favorites. Not to mention, most of the cities in Texas are a foodie’s dreamland, with a wide array of restaurants and tastings to savor from all around the state, country, and the world.

What About the Hot Texan Summers?

Out of all the moving to Texas pros, the one con is the hot Texan summer. It can get extremely hot in July and August, to where it can be unbearable for some people, especially if it is their first summertime in Texas.

However, you don’t have to fret about the heat, as Texas does offer modern amenities, like central air conditioning to keep your home and business cool. You will even find all of our vehicles come equipped standard with AC!

What most newly relocated residents discover is, after staying for a spell and getting acclimated to the heat, the summers are not as bad as what they might have initially heard. Sure, we like to joke about just how bad the heat can be. Yet, we are more than happy to share our tips and tricks for beating the heat and staying cool all summer long with new residents. Heck, we’ll even forgive you for not moving to Texas sooner!

All joking aside, the best way to make surviving the heat of summer easier on you and your family, especially if you are not used to it, is to remember Hot Texas Summer Nightsto get your AC serviced and tuned up on an annual basis.

Some Texans will also tell you it can be beneficial to have a monthly or bi-monthly home AC service plan to help prevent unexpected breakdowns. Plus, if we do have an unusually hot winter day, you don’t have to worry about your AC not working right.

TIP: What many new residents do not know is that Texas is one of the few states which has deregulated its electricity markets. This means you are free to shop around rates and select the energy provider you want in most areas. You will also find the option to select between fixed-rate and variable-rate plans.

Texas will continue to be a popular destination for new inbound people and families for the foreseeable future. If you think Texas might be a good fit for you and your family, we invite you to visit and check out everything Texas has to offer. We are sure, after you visit, you will be heading home to pack up and move.

To help keep your home cool and comfortable all year round, as well as heated on those few cold winter days, please feel free to contact your nearest Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing location today! We are also experts at new air conditioning, heating, and plumbing installations should you decide to build your new Texas home.

 

Source

  1. https://www.texasrealestate.com/uploads/files/general-files/Texas_Relocation_Report_January_2017.pdf


Humidity, Heat Waves and Hot Summer Nights: We’ve Got You Covered!

Posted on October 11th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Summer—especially here in the southwest—can be a killer. Texas summers average a temperature somewhere in the 90s, punctuated by heat spikes upward of 100 degrees.¹ For residents of the Lone Star State, that means lots of air conditioning indoors and extra care outdoors! In this article, we’ll take a look at how the heat and humidity can affect your home and health, as well as how a good air conditioner company can help you keep cool and safe when the temperatures rise.

 

How Humidity Works

Humidity is a measurement of the amount of water vapor in the air. Much like walking through a cloud of steam, the presence of this water vapor Smart Thermostatmakes you feel sticky and slightly damp. The vapor is also the reason certain types of hair begin to frizz and curl in high humidity—the hair is essentially getting wet.

Generally, the amount of water vapor is defined in two ways: absolute humidity and relative humidity. Absolute humidity is calculated as the amount of water vapor divided by the amount of dry air at a given temperature. Relative humidity is the percentage we’re most familiar with in weather reports, as it refers to what percentage of the maximum possible amount of water vapor is currently present.

If the relative humidity is 50%, it means that the air is currently at half its capacity for water vapor. If the relative humidity is 100%, it means the air can’t possibly hold more vapor. At 100%, the vapor generally begins to form clouds. The vapor condenses and eventually falls back to the ground as rain. This is why it can seem so much less humid after a rainfall.

 

What Is a Heat Wave?

A “heat wave” is generally defined as a period of especially hot, potentially dangerous weather. A heat wave may also be accompanied by especially Woman Standing in Humidityhigh humidity. Because there is no respite from the incredible heat for a long stretch of time, people who spend a great deal of time outdoors or who do not have access to a cooled space can become extremely ill. Conditions like heat stroke, dehydration, and even death can result if a person does not take care during a heat wave—especially in the sweltering heat of the southwest United States.

 

Staying Safe in the Hot Outdoors

Whether you’re working during a heat wave or simply enjoy spending your summers in the sun, here are a few key tips for staying safe, cool, and properly hydrated in the great outdoors:

  • Plan rest periods into your workday (preferably somewhere cool).

If you’re laboring outside in extreme heat, make sure you take breaks to cool down and relax. Make sure your body temperature has a chance to level out while you hydrate and rest up before getting back to work. Over-working yourself in severe heat can be extremely dangerous (and it will likely affect the quality of your work).

  • Drink water frequently.

When spending a great deal of time outside in the heat, make sure you drink at least a half cup of water every 15 to 20 minutes to keep your Drinking Waterbody hydrated. Remember: As you sweat, you’re losing water!

  • Dress appropriately for the heat.

Always pay attention to the weather reports and dress for the heat and humidity. Should it cool off suddenly, you can always add layers over time.

  • Pay attention to any unusual symptoms, even if they seem vague.

Don’t take symptoms like dizziness, headache, nausea, or red-hot skin lightly. These may be symptoms of serious conditions like heat exhaustion or potentially fatal heat stroke. If your body starts acting unusually in the heat, it may be trying to tell you that something is very wrong.

  • Get into an air-conditioned space when you get the chance.

Even if you’d rather not be indoors for very long, it’s a good idea to take advantage of modern A/C systems whenever you can. Take a few minutes to pop into a nearby shop or public building to cool off in the air-conditioned space whenever you can. If you’re just hanging out in your backyard, make sure you head inside every so often to chill out—literally!

 

Using A/C Without Racking Up a Gigantic Energy Bill

Air conditioning can be a literal lifesaver in the heat of a Texas summer. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to make sure you don’t break the bank trying to stay cool:

  • Make sure your A/C unit is in good condition before summer comes.

Make sure that your air conditioner is in good working order and will function efficiently by getting it inspected and serviced before the intense Fatigued Manheat of summer strikes. An air conditioner contractor like Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing can take a look at your system and help you address any maintenance or repairs that may need to be done before your unit is in regular use for the year.

  • Run the air conditioner less often at night.

Because our bodies generally need less cooling at night, you can set your air conditioner to run at a much lower rate while you’re asleep. If it’s not too hot indoors, you may be able to turn your A/C completely off at night and get by with a bedside fan.

  • Use a thermostat with a scheduling system to avoid cooling the house when no one is home.

Another great way to reduce unnecessary usage is to use a thermostat with a scheduling option that allows you to adjust your home’s temperature at specific times of day. With timed cooling, you can set your A/C to kick on only a half hour before you arrive home, saving money on energy during the day when you’re not around.

  • Opt for a small window unit that cools only a certain area.

If you don’t have central air conditioning or would prefer not to use it, you can save money by heating only a small area or a single room with a Table Fansmall window unit. This uses significantly less energy and still gives you a nicely cooled getaway from the heat.

  • Close vents to rooms you don’t need to be cooled.

If there’s an area of your home that you don’t intend to spend much time in when it’s hot out (like the basement or a rarely used guest room), close the vents to that room. By not sending cooled air into that room, the areas you want cooled will come down to temperature more quickly and your system won’t waste energy.

  • Supplement air conditioning with fans for good movement.

Keep air moving throughout your home with a few fans for good measure. In addition to keeping cooled air distributed, the breeze will provide an extra cooling effect.

 

Beat the Heat and Humidity with Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing

At Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing, we’ve been helping residents across the Austin, San Antonio, Temple, and New Braunfels areas stay cool for more than 65 years. With our air conditioner installation, maintenance, and repair services, you can make sure that your home is prepared for the next big heat wave.

Whether you need us to perform a full air conditioner replacement or make an emergency repair to an existing A/C system, we’ve got you covered. To learn more about how our expert air conditioner contractors can help you beat the Texas heat, call your nearest Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing location today!

 

Source

  1. https://www.usclimatedata.com/climate/texas/united-states/3213

 

 


How to Operate Air Conditioning Efficiently and Save Energy

Posted on October 1st, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Today, air conditioning is more than simply an optional convenience. It helps keep indoor temperatures at within a tolerable range, which is very Operating an Air Conditioning Systemimportant in the year-round Texas heat. However, that comfort comes at a price—in the monthly utility bill, of course, but also in the energy used. If we look to the past, however, we can discover some air conditioning tips to save energy and money.

Keeping your utility bill down can be a challenge. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that air conditioning can account for nearly half of the average home’s energy consumption. This number may be even higher for Texas residents, who are used to long, sweltering summers. Not all the expense is necessary for most homeowners, though, if they change certain inefficient habits and make sure their HVAC system is running properly and is well-maintained.

The Importance of Proper Installation and Maintenance

Keeping your HVAC equipment in good working condition is important, as the problems can begin almost immediately if your unit isn’t properly installed. That’s why it’s important to hire only experienced HVAC professionals to set up your cooling system.

Just as important, you should have your HVAC unit serviced to save on energy bills, as there is a variety of things that can go wrong that will run up your bill fast. This may include improperly operating fans, malfunctioning condensers, clogged vent-lines, and more. Clogged ducts are so common that the Department of Energy estimates that, in the typical home, 20 to 30 percent of air moving through HVAC ducts is lost through leaks in the ductwork.

Efficient A/C Habits to Save Energy

While it goes without saying that keeping your thermostat at a higher temperature will save you money in the warmer seasons, certain other tips Air Conditioning Installation and Maintenancemay be less well-known.

Keeping your home cool doesn’t mean relying 100 percent on the A/C. In fact, if we look to the past, we can see many ways Texans managed to stay cool before the advent of commonplace A/C, and these “cooling hacks” can still be used today.

Tips include:

  • Use a ceiling fan, and other ventilation strategies. If necessary, put a bucket of ice in front of the fan to blow even cooler air.
  • Install solar screens or window films. These can block out up to 70 percent of solar energy before it enters the home.
  • Have your home properly insulated. Insulation is both helpful for heating and cooling.
  • Don’t create extra heat. Turning certain lights or operating appliances on can turn up the heat in the room. For example, don’t cook in the oven if the outside grill is available, instead. Install energy-efficient lighting that runs cooler than incandescent light bulbs.
  • Turn off the A/C at night. Keep the windows open at night, and close them in the morning and pull down the blinds to keep sunlight from heating your room even more.

Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing has followed several “Green Initiatives” to help save energy and to save you money. These include:

  • High-efficiency equipment
  • Energy star certified products
  • Ozone friendly refrigerants

To learn more tips on how to save on your energy bill, or to schedule an appointment with our HVAC experts, please contact one of our area offices for more information.

Sources

  1. https://energy.gov/public-services/homes/heating-cooling
  2. https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=home_improvement.hm_improvement_ducts


Born n’ Raised in Texas? Tips to Overcome Texas Heat Struggles

Posted on September 8th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Hot summers in Texas can be hard to deal with even when going from your home to the car and to work or running errands. Even while you are at home, your air conditioning can struggle while attempting to keep your house cooled. For those of us that grew up in Texas, we have learned several ways to combat the heat, while still being able to enjoy the longer summer days.

Indoor Cooling Tips

  1. Have you air conditioned serviced by our AC company. No one wants to come home to a 90+ degree home after a long day of work andTexas Heat Struggles discover their air conditioning stopped working. With regular maintenance plans, we can help prevent unexpected breakdowns on those 100+ degree heat index days.
  2. Keep blinds and drapes closed. Glass windows will heat up and transfer heat indoors. You can block out this heat by keeping the blinds down and even better, close the drapes, too.
  3. Turn on your ceiling fans. Ceiling fans set to the counter-clockwise direction will force cool air up from the floor, allowing you to set your thermostat a few degrees higher, yet remain cool. Plus, if you are sitting underneath the fan, the air will make your skin feel cooler.
  4. Add insulation to your attic. Most attics do not have sufficient insulation resulting in a loss of cooled air. Increasing the insulation will help keep the upper levels of your home cooler.
  5. Use light colored roofing materials or paint your roof. Another source of heat transfer is the roof on your home. This is why so many homes use lightly colored roofing materials. If you have darker shingles, you can paint them with a light colored roofing paint to reflect the heat away from the home.

Outdoor Cooling Tips

  1. To stop your car from becoming an inferno, try to park in covered or shaded areas.Outdoor Cooling Tips
  2. Always use a sunshade over the windshield.
  3. When opening the car door, allow the hot air to escape before getting in.
  4. Roll down the windows when turning on the car’s AC as this will help force the hot air out and cool things down faster.
  5. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated.
  6. Wear sunscreen and reapply often, even if you are only outside for ten to fifteen minutes.
  7. Wear sunglasses with UV blockers to protect your eyes.
  8. Limit your time outdoors, if possible to thirty to sixty minute intervals with cool down periods indoors.
  9. Never take pets or small children outside on extremely hot days.
  10. Look for indoor activities to do, like seeing a movie, museums, play parks, skating rinks, or bowling alleys.

You may want to avoid pools and water parks extremely hot 90+ days because that water will be warm and not do much to cool your down. To ensure your home’s cooling system is working at peak efficiencies all summer long, remember to call your nearest Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing location today!


Four Critical Warning Signs of Clogged Vent Lines

Posted on July 7th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Plumbing is a lot more complicated than most people realize. For example, did you know that your drain lines require ventilation?

Chances are that you didn’t. Few people realize that their drain lines also have pipes connected that allow exhaust and sewer gases to escape and air to Critical Warining Signs of Clogged Vent Linesenter to make sure pressure in the drain is equalized to ensure wastewater keeps flowing. These pipes are called vent lines and if they become obstructed it can cause huge problems for your home’s plumbing that may require a local plumber’s help.

Here’s an example of how it all works. In your bathroom sink, water will flow through the drain to a curved pipe called the p-trap. The p-trap fills up with water to keep sewer gases and odors from flowing back up the pipe into your bathroom. The p-trap is refreshed whenever more water flows through it. A drain pipe is attached to the p-trap and exits through the wall to the soil stack, where the waste water flows out through another pipe to the sewer or septic tank and sewer gases exit to the roof where the vent line emerges.

If the vent line is obstructed, it can cause a number of problems, including:

  • Slow clearing drains – If the drain just isn’t clearing and you’ve done everything reasonable to clear a possible clog in the drain, your problem may be an obstructed vent pipe. Without air to equalize the pressure, the free flow of water through the drain system can be inhibited.
  • Bad smells – If your vent line is clogged, water may not flow properly through your drain system. As a result, the p-traps under your sinks or toilets may become dry and sewer gas may accumulate, causing a foul odor throughout your home.
  • Gurgling noises – If your sink or tub makes gurgling noises after draining, there’s a good chance your vent line is obstructed. Air pressure building up in poorly vented pipes can cause gurgling noises in your pipes.
  • Weak toilet flushing – If the flow of water in your toilet seems weak and the bowl isn’t refilling quickly enough after a flush, obstructed vent lines may be the culprit. Poorly vented drains aren’t always the cause of poor-performing toilets but, if you’ve exhausted other explanations, this could be the cause of your problem.

Professional plumbing companies can inspect vent lines and confirm whether your suspicions are warranted. If your vent line is obstructed, plumbers Vent Line Inspectionshave several options they can use to resolve the problem. They can use specialized plumbing tools such as augers to break through the blockage, restoring the vent line’s function.

Regular maintenance check-ups by plumbers and occasional inspections by property owners can help prevent vent line clogs from causing reduced plumbing system performance. Property owners who want a reliable service should consider Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing.

Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing, a family-owned company providing 24-hour plumbing services to the Austin and San Antonio areas, can assist property owners with clogged vent lines and other plumbing issues. Contact Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing for a consultation regarding your home’s plumbing and air conditioning today.


How Texans Kept Homes Cool in the Summer Before Air Conditioning

Posted on June 30th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Can you imagine not having air conditioning to keep your home cool during the hot Texas summers? Well as miserable as this might sound, it was notHow Texans Keep Cool that long ago that Texans did not have central air conditioning systems and had to rely upon other ways to remain cool on those sweltering summer days!

In fact, life before air conditioning was something that was common until the widespread use of air conditioning became “standard” in homes in the later 20th century. It was not uncommon to find homes in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s without any type of automated cooling. To stay cool, people came up with some rather creative “cooling hacks.”

  • Ice Chests in the Basement

People would fill ice chests and place these in the basement. Basements are naturally cool and when the ice melted, it would lower the air temperature even more. This made basements a great place to sleep at night. Hence, the birth of finished basements! During the day, people would leave basement doors open and use fans to draw up the cool air and circulate it through the home.

  • Metal or Porcelain Bath Tubs

Those retro-style clawed tubs or big metal/copper tubs did more than just add charm to the home. These styles of tubs are naturally “cool” and helped cool the surrounding air in the bathroom. When filled with cool water, they provided a natural way for people to escape the scorching summer heat.

  • Heavy Dark Drapes

People would keep shutters closed and hang heavy, dark curtains over windows that got direct sunlight in the summer months to stop rooms from Heavy Dark Drapesheating up and becoming too uncomfortable.

  • Using Windows to Vent/Circulate Air

In multi-story homes, the top halves of windows on the upper floor were opened in the day to allow hot air to escape from the home. In the evenings, after the sun set, the lower part of windows on upper and lower floors were opened to allow cool air to enter the home.

  • Doors Were Kept Shut

Another way how homes were kept cool before the age of AC was people would keep the doors on upper level rooms closed during the day to help contain hot air and prevent the rest of the home from getting too hot. The only exception was bathroom doors, which were kept open to allow a cooling effect from bathtubs filled with cool water to help lower air temperatures.

  • Indoor Fans

Electric fans were used to help cool the home. People would place fans in upstairs windows that blew hot air out of the home. On lower floors, they Electric Fanswould face the fans inwards to draw in outdoor air. Together, this created a natural flow of air to help keep the inside more bearable in the summer. Ceiling fans were also used to help circulate air and keep it cooler.

  • Fans Plus Ice Blocks

Prior to the invention of the air conditioning, people would take blocks of ice and place these into a large metal tub or bucket. Then they would sit a fan on a stool next to the tub and turn it on. The coolness of the ice and tub along with the air flow the fan created, resulted in the first type of ancient air conditioning for indoor cooling.

  • Homes Had Taller Ceilings and Thicker Walls

If you look at the architecture of homes prior to the invention of the air conditioning, two common traits are high ceilings of ten feet and thicker walls High Ceiling Homesbetween one and two feet. The exterior walls used several layers of bricks and/or cement blocks to help insulate the home and keep it cooler. The high ceilings helped trap the hottest indoor air higher up, with cooler air in the lower part of the room.

  • Long Covered Porches

There is a reason many of the older homes in Texas have long covered porches – they provided a place outdoors where people could escape the indoor heat and relax. When ceiling fans were invented, it became commonplace to install these on the porch to circulate the air to stay cooler.

  • Shade Trees Were Grown Near the Home

It was not uncommon to find multiple shade trees planted on the east and west sides of homes. The trees provided natural shade from direct sunlight and stopped it from heating up the home’s interior. In addition, once fully grown, people could enjoy eating or taking naps in the cooler shaded areas outside their home.

  • Outdoor Grills and Cooking

Rather than cook indoors on hot summer days, which only added to the heat inside, people took to grilling on wood and charcoal grills or cooking over Outdoor Grills and Cookinga fire pit.

In addition to the above “hacks,” many people had their own personal ways to keep cool during the blazing Texan summer days, like hanging wet laundry throughout the home or sleeping in bedsheets that were cooled in the refrigerator.

How Texans Can Keep Cool Today and Rely Less on Their Air Conditioning

Several of the ways people kept cool during life without air conditioning can still be used today to help control your home’s cooling costs. For instance, the use of ceiling fans can help make you feel around five degrees cooler without having to turn down your thermostat. Other modern “cooling hacks” include:

  1. Upgrade to LED and Fluorescent Lights – Certain types of lightbulbs give off heat and cause air temperatures to increase. Both LEDs and Cooking Meals on the Grillfluorescents use less energy and give off little to no heat.
  2. Cook Meals on the Grill – Using the stove, cooktop, oven, and even the microwave will create heat. Who doesn’t like freshly grilled meats and veggies? Plus you can cook a wide range of foods if your grill has separate side burners.
  3. Increase the Insulation in Your Home – Modern homes’ walls are not as thick as older homes. As such, it is beneficial to have additional insulation blown into the walls, as well as in your attic.
  4. Adjust Air Vents – The air vents in the home should be adjusted. You want to close vents in the basement since it is naturally cool and there is no need to cool it more. On the main floor of the home, adjust vents so they are partially closed. On upper floors open vents all the way. Remember, hot air rises and cool air falls, so the cooled air upstairs will also help cool the main floor of the home.
  5. Avoid Running the Dryer – It is better to install a clothes line and air dry clothes outdoors on hot summer days.Avoiding a Hair Dryer
  6. Run Appliances in the Evenings – Washers, dishwashers, and other such appliances do give off heat, so use them at night when it is cooler, not to mention it also prevents your air conditioning from overworking itself during the hot daytime hours.
  7. Upgrade to a Programmable Thermostat – A programmable thermostat allows you to set different temperatures for various times and days of the week. It makes no sense to use your preferred setting during the day when no one is at home. Setting it a few degrees higher helps reduce how often it runs along with lowering your electric bill.
  8. Give Your Air Conditioner Unit an Annual Tune-UpRely on an experienced air conditioner contractor to discover potential problems sooner, rather than later. Not only will it cost less to fix, but it also ensures your AC is running efficiently and effectively to cool your home and avoids unexpected failures on sweltering summer days.
  9. Replace Air Filters Often – Depending on the type of air filter you have, you may need to replace it monthly, every other month, or once Air Conditioning Tune-Upevery 90 days. Clean air filters ensure air flow is maintained in the home and the AC functions correctly.
  10. Have Air Leaks in Ducts Fixed – Small air leaks in ductwork can cause your AC to run more often and harder, since the cool air is escaping long before it even reaches the rooms in the home.
  11. Insulate Ductwork – If your ducts are under the crawl space of the home, you can increase the effectiveness of cooled air by insulating the ducts.
  12. Upgrade to a New, Modern AC System – If your AC system is more than fifteen years old, it is probably nearing the end of its usefulness, where repairs will end up becoming more common and costly. In the long run, it can be cheaper to have a newer, more energy efficient air conditioner replacement model

To help keep your home cool and comfortable all summer long, contact the air conditioning and cooling experts at Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing today! We offer:

  • AC MaintenanceNew AC Unit
  • AC Service and Repairs
  • New AC Installations
  • Ductwork Repairs and Installation
  • New Construction Heating and Cooling System Installs
  • Indoor Air Quality
  • Air Diagnostics and Balancing, and More

We service homes in the San Antonio, Austin, New Braunfels, and Temple communities, as well as the surrounding areas! Please feel free to call one of our area offices directly for more information or to schedule regular or emergency service.


Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing: A BBB Organization and Proud!

Posted on June 30th, 2017 by ChristainSon_Admin

Our Excellent BBB Rating: Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing is a family-owned company established in 1950 with a strong focus on quality work and customer service. We proudly hold an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), with which we’ve been registered for over 40 years.

We’ve been officially BBB accredited for the past 4 years and continue to strive for the highest in customer satisfaction and business distinction. We’ve also earned 4.01 out of 5 stars from BBB customer reviews, illustrating our commitment to providing an excellent customer experience.

Better Business Bureau

Why Accreditation Matters: Accreditation by the Better Business Bureau is more than just a means of looking good with a BBB logo on a website. The rating given to a company by the BBB is a holistic measurement of 7 major elements:

  1. Customer complaint history with the BBB
  2. Type of business
  3. Time in business
  4. Transparency of business practices
  5. Any failure to honor commitments to the BBB
  6. Any licensing and government actions known to the BBB
  7. Any advertising issues known to the BBB

Our A+ rating and accreditation by the BBB illustrate that not only does Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing meet high standards of business excellence, but that we are an honest, transparent company with no significant history of consumer complaints, failed commitments, licensing concerns, or advertising issues. In short, our BBB accreditation means we operate at the highest level of business ethics and professionalism.

In general, BBB accreditation is a signal to the public that a company is trustworthy and will complete all jobs properly. This status is important to us and our prospective clients, as it provides an easy way to identify us as an ideal choice for their air conditioning and plumbing needs.

The accreditation process also keeps us in check, as any slide in the quality of our work will be reflected in our rating (and we work hard to keep our A+!). To us, our accreditation also provides valuable feedback, letting us know that everything we’ve done for our customers and our service areas has been to their benefit.

Get the Best in A/C and Plumbing Service from Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing

If you live in the Austin, San Antonio, Temple, or New Braunfels areas and are looking for air conditioning or plumbing repair or maintenance, Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing is happy to help!

We offer a variety of professional HVAC and plumbing services, including A/C repair and replacement, furnace repair, air quality testing and inspection, air flow analysis, plumbing leak repair, drain cleaning, water heater maintenance, new construction plumbing, water quality inspection, and much more.

To learn more about our HVAC and plumbing services or to schedule an appointment with one of our repair professionals, contact your local Christianson Air Conditioning & Plumbing location today. We look forward to serving you!

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