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Save energy at home

Reduce Your Energy Use at Home

Calculator with money - Energy

Did you know October is Energy Action Month? Help your household get involved, see below for some minor changes that you can make to help improve comfort, the environment, while also lowering your utility costs:

  • Schedule furnace maintenance with us! Since heating alone can account for half of a winter energy bill – you want to make sure it is in its proper, working condition.
  • Review ways to save on your water bills – from fixing leaks to updating appliances and changing water use habits. Learn more on our recent blog »
  • Clean or replace filters in your furnace, air conditioner, and heat pump.
  • Turn off and unplug appliances when not in use. Shut off lights in unoccupied areas (or install a timer) and unplug any equipment that still drains energy if left plugged in (ex: coffee makers, phone chargers, printers, etc).
  • Take advantage of natural light to heat your home! Open south-facing window curtains during the day to allow sunlight to heat your home. Close them up at night to reduce potential chill.
  • Insulate heating ducts in attics or crawlspaces – keeping them in good repair can prevent heat loss of up to 60 percent.
  • If you need to replace any systems, opt for ENERGY STAR labeled products which can cut energy bills by up to 30 percent.

For additional energy saving tips for the home, office, and facility – please visit Energy.gov. Remember, individual choices add up – help in getting others to use energy efficiently to better our environment and our energy future.

At Patterson Plumbing & Heating our plumbers, drain cleaning techs and home heating and air conditioning professionals can repair any problem with your home’s plumbing, furnace, boiler or air conditioning. Give us a call today at 719-544-4922.

Tips for Reducing Your Utility Bills This Summer

Colorful clothes on a laundry line and sun shining

It’s not uncommon to see unusually higher energy bills during the summer months. After all, your air conditioning is working to keep your home comfortable, kids and guests can be in and out of the house, and extended vacations can have your home working on overdrive when not needed! Since your wallet shouldn’t have to feel such heavy summer time woes, see below for some tips for reducing your utility bills this season:

Unplug – Be sure to not only turn off devices but unplug them as well! Many still use energy even when in the off position. Don’t want to be bothered unplugging? Opt for a Smart Strip which will automatically cut power when devices don’t need it.

Keep doors and vents shut – Keep doors and vents closed to rooms that are not in use. No need to waste energy cooling off a guest room with no guests!

Turn off lights – Similar to our previous tip, keep lights off in rooms not in use. You may also want to make an effort to keeps light off during the day and instead rely on natural light to brighten the home.

Add insulation – Perhaps not too much can get through a crack in the wall, but one important thing that can is air. Your home can easily lose cool air (or warm air in the winter) by drifting outside through these spaces. Fill these gaps with insulation to reduce energy costs!

Take advantage of vacation settings – Whether its for your water heater or thermostat, if you know you’ll be away from the house for extended time adjust their settings to vacation mode. This way they aren’t working as hard to cool or heat your home.

Hang laundry outdoors – Bypass the dryer and let your clothing air-dry outside! Dryers can be a huge energy zap, so give them a break when not absolutely needed.

Call for AC maintenance – The air conditioning experts here at Patterson Plumbing will help make sure your unit is operating as efficiently as possible. Also make sure you have been changing your air filter, a dirty filter can easily restrict air flow!

If you’re looking for a new air conditioning system or have questions about your current one – we’re the Pueblo, Colorado area heating and air conditioning specialists. At Patterson Plumbing & Heathing, we offer upfront pricing and clean and courteous technicians. Call and make an appointment that’s convenient for you today! 719-544-4922.

Saturday January 10th is National Cut Your Energy Costs

iStock_000018788821_Full (1)

If one of your New Year’s resolutions was to reduce your energy consumption or even just save some money – you’re in luck. Tomorrow, Saturday January 10th is National Cut Your Energy Costs Day! There are many things we as individuals can do to help the environment, and our wallet as well.

Below are some tips for saving energy & money in honor of Cut Your Energy Costs Day:

  • Weatherproof the house – Adding caulk and weather strips to areas that are not adequately sealed (like doors or windows) can really make a difference.
  • Switch out old light bulbs for energy efficient compact fluorescent bulbs.
  • Cover all bare floors with carpeting or rugs to add to comfort and heat retention.
  • Wait until you have a full load of dishes or wash before turning on your dishwasher or washer/dryer.
  • Help save water while you shower by replacing current shower heads to low-flow options.
  • Fix any leaky or dripping faucet and running toilets – this can account for tons of money getting washed down the drain each year.
  • Turn appliances off when not in use – including unplugging these gadgets as well.
  • Use the power-save switch on your refrigerator if it’s available, otherwise set the temperature between 30 and 42 degrees F.
  • Use the right sized pots for the burners on your stove. Heat is lost when small pots are used on larger burners!
  • Close the flue on your fireplace when not in use and install glass doors to keep in the warm air.

At Patterson Plumbing & Heating, we’re available for all of your plumbing and heating needs. Give one of our expert technicians a call today: 719-544-4922. Don’t forget to LIKE us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more updates and industry news.

New Year, New Resolutions – Tips for Saving Money

blank list of resolutions on blackboard

It’s a tradition each New Year’s Eve to plan out a resolution or two for the year ahead. Most plan to exercise regularly, volunteer more, or finally cross an item off their bucket list. Many also pledge to save more money.

To help you get a jumpstart on your New Year’s resolutions, we have some tips to help you save money quickly, easily, and right in your own home – by reducing your energy costs this winter:

Adjust the thermostat – By simply turning down your thermostat 10 – 15 degrees for eight hours, you can save about 10% per year on your heating bills. You can do this overnight – just opt for flannel sheets, thicker comforters, and warmer PJs, or if you are away for long periods of time during the day at work/travel.

Only heat the rooms you use – Have a spare guest room or office space that has instead turned into a storage area? Close and seal off the vents in those rooms to be more energy efficient and instead direct the flow of air to the rooms you use most.

Turn it off! Keeping lights and appliances off when not in use is one of the best habits you can develop. Unplug your computer, TV, toaster oven, microwave and any other appliances to protect them from power surges. According to the Consumer Energy Center, many appliances can use power even if they are turned off.

Eliminate drafts – Drafts can waste 5%-30% of your energy according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Draft guards are great for drafty doors and for a quick fix, weather-stripping can fill gaps and minimize air infiltration. Also, be sure to keep the damper closed on your fireplace when not in use to eliminate drafts through the chimney.

Get efficient – If you know you are in the market for upgrading your appliances and fixtures – go the energy efficient route. Refrigerators, ovens, washers and dryers as well as toilets, shower heads and faucets all have  energy efficient options available.

Patterson Plumbing & Heating is a full service company prepared to handle your winterization needs. We are able to repair the smallest heating problem to the largest heating problems. We’re experts on all brands, makes and models. When you need us, we’ll be there..

The Guide to Winter Maintenance

Happy parents and teenage son warming near warm calorifer

Tis the season for gathering with friends and family near a warm fire. But this is also prime time for Mother Nature to wreak havoc on our homes and even our health. Follow the below winter maintenance checklist, courtesy of Angie’s List, to protect your most valuable assets this season:

HVAC System –

Call for an inspection: Lack of proper HVAC maintenance is one of the number one reasons for “no heat” calls. Not only does calling for an inspection help ensure everything is in good working condition, but it can also detect potential health hazards (ie: carbon monoxide leak).

Change Dirty Filters: Switching to clean filters helps your system operate more efficiently and thus reduces your energy costs. More importantly, a cleaner filter means improved indoor air quality!

Check Ductwork: Make sure all ductwork is sealed at joints and intersections to prevent heated air from leaking. Your warm air may be seeping out into the attic or crawl space – where it’s not needed. Or, the cold outside air can be drawn in instead. Either way, this increases your heating costs and reduces your indoor comfort.

Plumbing

Insultate Exposed Pipes: Pipes located in unheated areas are the most likely to freeze, while pipes that have been frozen in the past are more susceptible, now, to damage. Adding heat tape to these pipes prior to insulating can offer an extra layer of protection. Be sure to follow the manufacturers instructions.

Keep Cabinet Doors Open: If you have small children, remove anything that could be hazardous. Otherwise, open cabinet doors below the kitchen and bathroom sinks to help warm air circulate around those pipes.

Locate Your Shut Off Valve: If you have a winter retreat planned that will be taking you away from the home, shut off the water at the main shut-off valve to prevent any emergencies while you’re away!

For more information on prepping your home this season, download Angie’s List’s full guide here »

At Patterson Plumbing & Heating, we’re available for all of your home’s winter maintenance needs. Give one of our expert technicians a call today: 719-544-4922. Don’t forget to LIKE us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more updates and industry news.

October is Energy Action Month

Did you know, October is also National Energy Action Month? As part of this year’s campaign, WaterSense has launched their ShowerBetter initiative, encouraging people to save water AND energy by switching out old shower heads for a water efficient model!

Image Source: EPA.Gov

Image Source: EPA.Gov

We all know how important showering is – it wakes us up in the morning, helps us relax in the evening, and refreshes us after exercise. Showering accounts for nearly 17% of indoor water use – for the average family this equals nearly 40 gallons per day. Each time you or your family member steps into the shower, energy is used to heat and deliver water to your showerhead. Opting to install an energy efficient, WaterSense labeled showerhead can save 2,900 gallons of water and more than $70 in energy and water costs each year!

To save even more water, keep your shower under 5 minutes long. 

These small changes can quickly add up in savings – not only for your own wallet, but can benefit the rest of the country as well. According to the EPA website, “If every home in the United States replaced existing showerheads with WaterSense labeled models, we could save more than 260 billion gallons of water and nearly $5.1 billion in water and energy costs across the country annually!”

For more information on the ShowerBetter initiative, visit EPA’s website here »

Shower heads can sometimes be installed on your own and can easily be a nice bathroom upgrade. For shower head installations that require a bit more work, give the experts at Patterson Plumbing and Heating a call. Our bathroom remodeling division is sure to help guide you in creating the bathroom of your dreams!

Energy Saving Tips for College Students

Coins in a jam jar

As students adjust to college life, those of you living off campus may find yourselves in a dilemma. Not only are you putting money aside for tuition, food, internet/cable, and the obvious social activities – but now rent is due. Maybe some of you lucked out with utilities completely included, the rest of you however may have the pleasure of paying your energy bill. Work to keep next month’s costs low by following these tips:

Room Temperature

  • Keep your system off and utilize fans throughout the apartment
  • Close curtains and blinds to reduce heat entering your place
  • Install a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust your home’s temperature settings when you’re away or sleeping
  • Place delightfully mobile draft stoppers in front of drafty doors and windows
  • Make sure your furniture isn’t blocking vents or baseboards
  • Insulate your windows by covering them with plastic
  • By lining the walls behind your radiators with tinfoil, you can increase the heat in your apartment with no extra electricity usage

Lighting and Electronics

  • Turn off lights in rooms that are not being used and when you leave for class
  • Use compact florescent light bulbs (CFLs) as they last up to 7x longer and use less energy than traditional bulbs
  • Buy power strips to easily unplug items such as game consoles, TVs and kitchen appliances like toasters, coffee makers and toaster ovens
  • If purchasing a room air conditioner – purchase Energy Star qualified model

Cooking and Appliances

  • Thaw frozen food in your refrigerator over night to reduce cooking time
  • Your burner and pan size should match – smaller pan on a larger burner wastes heat, larger pan on a smaller burner takes more time to heat
  • Opt for using the microwave, toaster or electric pan for smaller meals
  • Run full loads of laundry and dishes
  • Wash your laundry with cold water whenever possible and don’t over dry your clothes

If you start going through this checklist and realize you have a more serious problem in the Pueblo area – give the experts at Patterson Plumbing and Heating a call at (719) 554-4922 or visit us at our website www.Pattersonplumbing.com  to schedule an appointment or for more information.

Plus, don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @PatPlumbingInc to keep up-to-date with Patterson Plumbing.

Tips on Saving Energy at Home

For a lot of us, summer is a time to splurge. Whether you’re organizing a vacation or a backyard BBQ, your wallet’s bound to take a hit. If your home costs are putting a halt on your summer fun – see below for some tips on how to save money by curbing your energy costs:

  1. Give your AC a tune-up – An inefficient AC can cause high monthly bills. Maintenance and tune-ups are recommended by all manufacturers to help save on energy costs, ensure your unit lasts longer, increase home comfort, and avoid costly breakdowns in the future.
  2. Repair leaks – Not only in your pipes, but in your air ducts, fireplace dampers, doors, and windows as well. This way your AC isn’t working extra hard to cool off a house that has air escaping.
  3. Adjust thermostats – Set your AC thermostat fan switch to “auto” to save energy. Leaving it in the “on” position keeps air constantly running. Also, adjust your home’s thermostat by a few degrees to save on your cooling costs.
  4. Check your water heaters – If you’re leaving your home for a few days, make sure to check and fix any leaks surrounding your water heaters. As long as the water heater is operating properly, it’s a good idea to set the thermostat to a “vacation” setting so it won’t use energy to heat the water when you aren’t home.

For more tips on saving energy click here ». And if you have any questions regarding your Air Conditioner, Air Ducts, Pipes, or Water Heaters – give one of our experts here at Patterson Plumbing & Heating a call: 719-544-4922. A specialist will come by, diagnose the problem, make recommendations and prepare pricing by the job – not the hour – so there are no surprises.