Who Installs Bathroom Exhaust Fans?

Who should install a bathroom exhaust fan is more complex than a homeowner might think. A licensed electrician, plumber, or HVAC technician can likely replace an existing exhaust fan or install a new one in a bathroom. However, who should install a bathroom exhaust fan depends on how the bathroom is set up and whether the job is a simple replacement or requires new ductwork or access to the roof.

Depending on the complexity, a bathroom fan installation may require an electrician, HVAC technician, and roofer, although a highly-skilled handyman or general contractor may be able to complete the project. Learn about the complexities of installing a bathroom exhaust ran and which licensed professionals may be required.

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2022-09-20T03:42:19+00:00September 13th, 2022|

Water Heater Upgrade and Other House Projects to Consider if the Climate Bill Passes

The climate bill that recently passed for 2022 offers rebates and tax breaks for qualifying homeowners who install energy-efficient products such as an energy efficient water heater. Estimated savings are approximately $1,800 in annual costs for gasoline and utility bills and can exceed $30,000 after 10 years and $140,000 after 25 years, if a household invests their energy bill savings from making energy efficiency upgrades.

There are many ways to make your home more energy efficient, including upgrading to an energy efficient water heater, installing an HVAC heat pump, adding insulation, installing rooftop solar panels, replacing drafty windows and doors, and more. For example, an energy efficient water heater will use approximate one-third of the electricity of a conventional water heater and would qualify for up to $1,750 in rebates.

Learn about home improvements that can reduce energy costs and quality for tax savings and rebates.

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2022-08-14T14:15:06+00:00August 12th, 2022|

Does a Home Warranty Cover HVAC Repair?

With some exceptions, HVAC systems are usually covered by home warranties that include home systems. The HVAC systems covered under the warranty depends on the type of warranty purchased. Appliance coverage typically includes appliances only (including kitchen and laundry appliances), systems only (including whole home systems like electrical, plumbing, and HVAC), or combination policies that cover both appliances and whole home systems. The home warranty policy will specify which HVAC components are covered, which typically include central air conditioning units, heating systems, some wall heaters, and water heaters. Some home warranties for HVAC will cover ductwork, pipes, and controls such as thermostats. Typical exclusions include portable appliances such as window units. Learn more about home warranty coverage for HVAC systems.

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2022-02-01T17:11:00+00:00January 31st, 2022|

How Long Do HVAC Systems Last?

HVAC systems are manufactured to withstand high use and last an average of 15-25 years. Climate and frequency of use impact an HVAC system’s longevity and while improvements in insulation and sealing a home reduces heat and cooling, it traps chemicals, dust, and other particles which can have a negative impact on HVAC appliances and controls. HVAC maintenance, including annual cleanings and tune-ups, can extend system life. Air conditioner maintenance is best performed in early spring while furnace maintenance is best performed in early fall. Typical HVAC system service includes cleaning condensers and coils, checking overflow valves, tightening connections, and a general inspection. Learn about HVAC system longevity and maintenance that could extended HVAC system life.

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2022-02-01T17:08:22+00:00January 31st, 2022|

Ways to Warm Up a Cold Finished Basement

When planning a finished basement project, be sure to consider that basements can be chilly in winter. There are several options for keeping a finished basement comfortable without major renovations. Low cost ideas for creating a warm and inviting space in a basement include a space heater, portable baseboard heater, an area rug, a throw blanket, and a ceiling fan that can run in reverse. Options for increasing the temperature of a large space in a basement include an electric fireplace, radiant floor heating, and radiant wall heaters. Learn about options for keeping your finished basement warm during colder periods.

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2022-01-21T17:57:42+00:00January 19th, 2022|

Does a Home Warranty Cover Plumbing Systems?

Typically, a home warranty will cover repairs to pipes and other plumbing fixtures. A home warranty is a service plan that provides coverage for service, repair, and replacement of systems and appliances listed in the warranty policy. These policies usually include a deductible but will cover the majority of the service or repair cost. Warranties can provide different types of coverage, including major home systems such as HVAC, electrical, and plumbing as well as appliances.

Plumbing is considered a service, so most warranties provide coverage for indoor pipe and other plumbing repairs. Covered repairs usually include leaks or breaks in pipes, fixing or replacing faucets and valves, fixing or replacing built-in motors and pumps, and basket strainers, and clearing of tub, shower, and toilet blockages and stoppages.

Learn about coverage offered by a typical home warranty.

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2021-11-02T21:39:02+00:00October 29th, 2021|

The Cost for Radiant Floor Heating

Unlike other forms of heating, such as radiators or forced air, radiant heating provides consistent heat throughout a room. These floor heating systems used to be considered a luxury feature, but today, homeowners are realizing the benefits of a radiant floor heating system, especially in bathrooms and kitchens.

There are two types of radiant floor heating – electric and water-based. Both provide consistent, efficient heat, can save as much as 15 percent on a home heating bill, are compatible with all types of flooring, and are relatively easy to install.

The cost for radiant floor heating depends on the system installed, but the cost is typically between $1,717-$6,047. Factors impacting cost include floor type and size, type of radiant heating installed, materials, labor, installation location in the home, and site preparation and cleanup.

Learn about radiant heating systems and the potential cost for installation.

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2021-10-29T16:24:33+00:00October 28th, 2021|

How to Hire a Plumber for a Water Heater Repair

While some water heater problems may be fixed with little mechanical knowledge, some issues require professional help. A plumber can assist homeowners in repairing their water heater timely and efficiently, and they can save homeowners money. Hiring a plumber can prevent a homeowner from buying parts for their water heater if the appliance needs to be replaced.

The average cost to repair a water heater is $587, with typical repair costs ranging between $150-$955. Common water heater problems include temperature issues, leaks, and running out of hot water.

When hiring a plumber, make sure the plumber is licensed and is established in your local area, request a quote for the repairs before authorizing work, confirm the plumber has liability insurance and worker’s compensation, and confirm their expertise in water heater repair and replacement.

Learn more about the cost for water heater repair and replacement and considerations before hiring a professional plumber.

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2021-10-22T01:38:29+00:00October 12th, 2021|

Why Is My Water Heater Making Noise?

There are many reasons why a hot water heater makes noise. Several of those reasons involve minor repairs or maintenance and don’t require a whole water heater replacement. Homeowners should be aware of how water moves and changes inside a water heater and in different parts of a home to understand what causes a water heater to make noise. Understand the cause of water heater noises – including popping, crackling, humming, hammering or knocking, screeching, ticking or tapping, sizzling, and more – and how you can resolve the sounds with simple maintenance or if you need a professional.

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2021-10-12T02:46:03+00:00October 4th, 2021|

How Long Does A Furnace Last?

The lifespan of a furnace depends on it’s unique features, when it was manufactured, and how well it was maintained. Typically, a furnace will last 15-20 years. With routine maintenance a furnace can last even longer. On the other hand, a neglected furnace may not last beyond its warranty. Oil-fueled furnaces have the longest life expectancy, and gas-fired furnaces have the shortest. Furnaces older than 10 years should be monitored closely since most furnace repairs happen during the last quarter of its lifespan. Factors impacting the longevity of a furnace include ensuring the furnace is the correct size for your home, the unit and ductwork are installed correctly, and performing routine maintenance. Learn about ensuring the longevity of a furnace and costs for replacement.

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2021-08-16T16:14:47+00:00August 13th, 2021|
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