Heat Pump Vs Furnace – What Is The Difference Between Them

Heat pump or furnace, which is best? If you currently need heat pump repair, you may thinking that you should had bought a furnace. But is it right? Well the debate about which one is between a heat pump and a furnace is going on for a while and the answer to it depends on where you actually live. Surprising isn’t it? Therefore, follow us as we try to answer the question by sharing pros and cons related to both systems and deciding which one you should go for.

What Is a Heat Pump?

A heat pump transfers air from a cooler area to a warmer area. If you are aware of how refrigerators and air conditioners work, the heat pump is exactly the same, however differing in operation as it runs in reverse.

Pros of Heat Pump

When it comes to the discussion and comparison between heat pumps and furnaces, the first notable factor is the energy efficiency of heat pumps. Amongst many other advantages that they carry, this is the first one. Modern heat pumps nowadays have SEER values ranging from around 14 to 21 SEER. By utilizing electricity, heat pumps happen to transfer heat from one area to another, meaning that they do not have to produce or generate heat by themselves. It simply operates by transferring the heat from the outside to the interior of your house.

However, even though modern heat pumps are more energy efficient as compared to most furnaces, they still are sometimes expensive to operate because they run with electricity and it is still expensive than natural gas and propane, which are fuels for furnaces. Therefore, while it is more efficient when it comes to transferring heat as compared to furnaces, it is comparatively more expensive to run. For many people out there the term “efficiency” may mean saving a few bucks on electricity bills, but in this case, it doesn’t.

Cons of Heat Pump

Well you might be thinking that why aren’t heat pumps that popular or why aren’t they used as standard heating equipment? Here is the catch. Since as already mentioned, that heat pumps transfer heat from outside to the inside of your house. What if you live in an area that has -20 degrees outside? Then again, here is the catch. The thing is that heat pumps will only work efficiently if the temperatures are above freezing. Meaning that if the temperature is above 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit, only then will a heat pump come in use whereas in the case of temperature dropping below 30-32 degrees, it won’t be a good idea.

What is a Furnace?

A furnace is a heating equipment that uses fuel to generate heat and transfer it around your house. There are different types of furnaces, such as electric, gas and fuel furnaces. Regardless, each one of them uses a fuel to produce heat inside your home.

Pros of Furnace

The biggest advantage attached to furnaces is that they will heat up your home regardless of the temperature outside as they generate their own heat as opposed to heat pumps that take heat from the outside and transfer it inside. Even if the temperature outside is 50 degrees or -10, a furnace will heat up your house and that is a priceless reliability to be honest if you live in a region such as Bozeman, Montana.

Another advantage of furnaces is that they are $500 to $1000 cheaper than heat pumps without including duct work.

Cons of Furnace

The biggest con attached to furnaces is, you might have already judged from the “fuel” factor and yes, you are right, is the running expense. No matter what type of furnace you are using, you are going to end up with huge bills at the end of every month. In some cases, a gas furnace might be cheaper to run but it depends whether you have access to gas in the area where you live.

Concluding, the answer to the question, which one should you go for? Actually depends on the region or area you are living in. It maybe that installing a furnace might be a good option but if there is no gas, then of course there is no furnace. In addition to that, make sure that in case if you are opting for furnaces, there should be expert furnace repair services Long Island available in your locality. It will help when you would need an urgent repair.

9 Home Plumbing And Drain Tips For Winter Season

Want some drain tips for winter? Follow below!

Insulation of Pipes

This is the first step usually followed by people and drain cleaning services as well to make your home ready for winters. Insulators are made of fiberglass or polyethylene material which covers your drain pipes to protect them from cold weather and freezing of water inside. It is recommended to use a thick layer of insulators over pipe when you are living in a very cold area. Also, you may use an addition heating tape to cover your insulated pipes if you feel the weather is extremely cold and only insulation on pipes might not help as well.

Fix All Cracks Before Winter Hits

Cracks on walls are very common and people even ignore them but the exterior cracks have to be fixed before winter hits in order to stay safe from any disastrous and costly maintenance afterwards. This is considered as the most effective way of keeping the cold air not seep into your home and temperature of pipe does not get affected as well. You may use caulking or spray foam insulation to fill the cracks which is very easy and gives efficient results.

Check the Stop Valve Every Alternate Day

Stop valves generally catch corrosion over time and may become extremely problematic in winters if you have not checked them before. It is recommended to keep on opening and closing the stop valves every alternate day to assure it is working properly and not getting corroded with time.

Dispose Of Leftover Fats and Oils in Dustbin

It a general practice of many people to pour down all leftover fats and oils into the drain while washing dishes which is an absolutely wrong practice especially in winters. It is highly recommended to dispose of such things into the cartons or bin bags to prevent the clogging of your kitchen drain. Also, if you do not do this then these oils are going to set in your pipes quite quickly with increased chances of germs and debris as well. So, it is better to take precautions rather than being sorry after striking cold winter weather.

Clean Off Your Outdoor Pipes Thoroughly Before Winter

When you’re planning for rugs indoors, it is important to take care of your outdoors too. If you have an outdoor garden, your outdoor pipes usually have debris like leaves and twigs inside them. It is not that problematic in summer but it may badly clog the pipes during winter so make sure to clean these outdoor pipes free from such debris thoroughly before winter strikes your area.

Detach all Garden Hoses and Spigots

It is important to detach the hoses and spigots before the temperature goes beyond freezing point and drain away all the water residuals from them. It is because water residuals may freeze inside the hoses which may require maintenance or even replacement afterwards. So, it is better to be cautious earlier and detach all hoses and spigots from faucets, roll up and store until the spring is back again.

Be Easy on Your Drains

When temperature is crossing the freezing points, it is always recommended to pour some hot water in your kitchen and bathroom drains for their good maintenance. It will help in clearing out any extra build-up of grease from your pipes so you can stay free from worries for any clogging of drains.

Assure No Dripping Taps

It is obviously inadvisable to leave any dripping tap without fixing them as it is a high source of water wastage commercially. But in winters, it may freeze and cause your internal pipes to crack if you do not fix these taps and close them tightly. Also, the damage it may cause in pipes is not so small and may become very problematic for you so make sure you are being cautious before winter than being sorry at the end.

Keep an Eye on Your Shower Plugholes

This is yet another way of clogging when you forget about your shower or bathroom plugholes. Areas where winter is very extreme and temperature goes beyond freezing points, people are advised to regularly check their shower plugholes to prevent any possible clogging. Drain contractors Manhattan usually recommend using any commercial drain cleaner for these plugholes to keep them clean and assure smoothly running water.

What to consider when you are buying a new rug?

A rug in the center of a room can certainly increase the visual appeal of the entire space, making it look more comfortable and cozy. However, a new rug requires some investment. So before you buy a rug from rug stores, there are a number of considerations that you need to make.

Choosing a new rug for your room means more than just finding affordable options that look nice with your furniture and decoration. Rather, a new rug becomes a practical and important part of the entire furnishing. Hence, it is very important for you to choose with great care.

What are the considerations?

In this article, we put together a number of things that you should consider before buying a rug. This includes:

Your style sense

While you may think it is obvious, do not ever underestimate your style sense. In fact, your taste is the first thing that you should consider before getting a rug. After all, you will have to live with for years to come. So, ask yourself what your style is.

Do you like antique rugs? Transitional rugs? Persian rugs? Or do you prefer a traditional rug? There are countless options in the market out there. So explore it all!

Care and cleaning

Rugs are not regular pieces of cloth that you can wash. In fact, real rugs need to be cleaned professionally by experts after every few months. In fact, you may need more frequent cleaning in case the rug is placed in an area with a lot of traffic.

If not cleaned properly, rugs (especially those made of wool) will absorb an aroma that will not go away on its own.

In case a rug is not cleaned at least twice in a year, it can become very unhygienic. In fact, it may also become home to dust mites, which will further make conditions worse.

Use of the rugs

Do you have young children who spent all their time on the floor, sitting and playing? For high traffic situations such as this one, flat-weave and low-pile rugs work better. At the same time, sisal rugs and shag are better for areas where there is no or very little traffic.

The placement

The room in which the rug will be placed also matters. Often at times, you will have to choose the style and type of rugs based on the room where it has to be placed. For instance, in case you choose a sisal rug, consider placing it in a very low traffic room such as the bedroom.

In comparison, if you want to place a rug in the living room, consider buying a low-pile rug. This is because the living room has a lot of traffic and human activity.

The overall feel of the rug

The prime reason why many people buy a rug is to feel the coziness of walk on it barefoot, especially in the winter season. Hence, you should make sure that the material of the rug is cozy and feels nice.

If you want to make it rather cushier, you can also use a carpet pad which can be placed right beneath the rug. This will especially be good for children, who like sitting and playing on the rugs.

Ending note

The above-mentioned considerations should be enough to help you buy the perfect rug for your house. However, depending on different situations, you may also have to make some extra considerations. Nowadays, Persian rugs are quite trendy. So if you reach out to a Persian rugs store Vienna VA, the staff will be able to guide you with the rest. We wish you the best of luck in choosing the perfect rug for your room!

How To Repair Frost Damaged Chimney Bricks

Frost damages are one of the worst type of damage your chimney can be a victim of. Usually, chimney relining services are called up to see through to all the damages done to your chimney.

What Are Frost Damaged Bricks?

The bricks on your chimney are vulnerable to the outside weather which can cause them to deteriorate. The different weathers effect the bricks of the chimney hence it can cause damaged, spalled or frosting in the chimney bricks. Low temperatures, high amount of rainfall or windy weather can cause the bricks to have frost damage. High wind and rainfall can hit the bricks and sometimes penetrate through its surface which can be frosted when the temperature goes below zero.

Damping bricks are bad enough to be repaired and pair that with low temperatures where the dampness freezes and water expands causing the fissures in the bricks to widen up. This cycle continues inevitably and makes your chimney more damaged day by day. A good chimney repair service is recommended so that you can grip the problem in its early stages and treat it without much trouble.

Repairing Frost Damage

As much as you would like to set up your appliances and countertops in kitchen, your frosted chimney bricks need your attention. Let’s know how to repair frost damage.

Identify the Frost Damage

Identifying the frosting of the bricks is crucial where you need to analyze what part of chimney is affected. It may occur that the whole thing is damaged so you may need to repair the whole chimney. The frost damaged bricks are likely to look spalled and cracks would seem visible due to the expansion of water in the fissures. The frosting can also cause the chimney to lose its effectiveness. Look for signs or call a professional for chimney service. The worst case would be that the chimney would leave opening in many places due to the falling out of the bricks.

Saturating the Bricks

Clear out the masonry with a wire brush and water repellent to saturate it. This way your bricks will be cleaned out and saturated with water repellents. Make sure that the water repellent that you use contains silanes and siloxanes as their particles help fill the tiny holes that are invisible to naked eye essentially making the bricks unable to be penetrated by the water.

Applying Silane or Siloxane Creams

Alternatively, you can also use silane and siloxane creams coated on the bricks to ensure that the frost damage or spalling bricks are prevented for good. An expertly applied cream will be the most effective and have a lasting effect.

Have the Right Kind of Bricks Installed

The type of bricks play a huge role in being frost damaged or spalling according to the weather condition in your area. The bricks that you use must match the weather resistance in your state or area like water resistant bricks for a rainy area. When rebuilding the chimney, before buying the bricks check for those bricks that have SW (severe weathering) or MX (moderate weathering) stamp to determine what you need.

Read the Instructions for Sealers

Sealers are used for coating the bricks so that they are protected from the harsh weather. However, before applying a sealer to the chimney bricks, read the instructions carefully to get the maximum out of it. Some sealers require more than one coat to be applied to the brick to reach their maximum protection. Some require just a few minutes to apply the second coat whereas other take some more time to have it applied for it to enter the mortar. Different sealers have different instructions and it’s important to go by them to get the maximum result out of it.

Prevention Steps for Frost Brick Damage

Caring for your stuff is important for them not to get broken down. Same with the bricks where prevention can lead to minimizing of the frost damage and increase in the lifespan of the bricks.

Here are a few prevention measures you can carry out.

  • A good drainage system can drain out the rainwater
  • Checking of pipes for leaks
  • Have the masonry inspected and repaired before winters because this season is the most damaging one

Chimney damages can be serious and chimney inspection Upper Marlboro services should be called to make the necessary repairs to the masonry.


What should you do first? Set up new appliances or replace the countertop?

Not all kitchen remodeling projects end up being successful. Where on one hand some projects simply fail, people end up going overboard in the other projects. Do remember that a project that costs you more than it is supposed to, is also a failed project. One question that people ask before remodeling the kitchen is, whether they should replace the countertop or set the new appliances first? Well, countertop replacement is certainly very crucial. At the same time, the importance of setting up new appliances can also not be ignored.

However, it is very important to do things in the right order in order to get everything flowing smoothly. In case you do one thing before the other in the wrong order, you will end up wasting money. At the same time, you may not be able to build the kitchen that you have always dreamt of.

What should you get first? A new countertop or new appliances?

In this article, we aim to answer the above-mentioned question. While it may sound a simple one, there are a number of complexities that may arise if it is not addressed properly.

Making a kitchen plan

Countertop designs usually revolve around the specifications of the new appliances. In case you are planning to install specialty appliances such as one with a wide length or an off-size refrigerator, you will have to measure the appliance first. However, in case you are not planning to reconfigure the cabinets and the countertop, the new appliances should be of the same size as the existing appliances

Fixtures and appliances

It is important to insert the dishwasher below a counter so that the countertop configuration does not get altered. The same rule also applies to trash compactor and other appliances that sit under the counter. In case you have a refrigerator that fits in tightly, you may have to change the edge of a countertop that is adjacent to the refrigerator.

When you are planning to get a new configuration for the cabinets, take a look at the local code and determine the exhaust vent that you require.

In case you have cooktops that have vents built-in right behind an appliance, you may have to modify the countertop backsplash for better fitting.

Countertops go first

Before dropping in a top-end under-counter dishwasher, it is important for the countertop to be in the right place. You can spot a number of problems beforehand by using a paper template that the configuration of the countertop. This will include the fixtures such as a sink and the appliance placement.

In certain countertop types such as poured decorative concrete, manufacturers construct framed block-outs in advance. These cutouts primarily represent the space for the sink.

Similarly, before installing the dishwasher, set in and plumb your sink so that it is right in place. At this point, do not fret in case your refrigerator or dishwasher does not look in place. These appliances usually feature adjustable legs that can be lowered or raised until the appliances and plumb and level.

Other countertop considerations

Ultimately, the type of countertop material that you have chosen determines the way it will be installed. In case you have a flat laminate in good condition, new laminate can be installed on top of it. In the case of a poured concrete top, tile, or a solid composite-type countertop, you will have to take the existing top off first. Let’s suppose that you have chosen granite. Make sure that the granite company Durham NC has constructed the countertop based on the right specifications. In the case of granite, a base layer of plywood will also be required. Once everything looks good, you’re ready to install it.