Pets add a lot to our families, and often, they are considered an actual member of the family. Because of this, they spend time indoors and outdoors right alongside you, and benefit from the same cooling or heat provided by your HVAC system. However, your pet poses some risks to your systems that you might not realize, but should be mindful of if you want to keep your AC running at its best. We've divided our tips into two categories: indoor and outdoor issues you could face with your AC unit if you have a pet. Those are...
Inside your home, your pet stays nice and cozy...but it also continually sheds hair and dander. These can quickly clog your filter, and not only decrease the air quality in your home significantly (read: worse allergies for you and your family) but can also harm the function of your AC system. To keep your unit running at top efficiency, change the filter out routinely, preferably once a month, and keep a close eye on it for any buildup in between changes. Additionally, vacuum up pet hair on a regular basis to keep it from reaching your filter in the first place, which will save you money on excessive filter changes over time. Finally, if you have floor vents in your home, keep pets from sleeping on top of them, as this limits air flow and isn't good for the temperature of your house OR your AC/heating system.
Outside, your pet can cause damage to your actual AC unit by climbing on it, scratching it, or worse...going potty on it. The AC unit is a common place for pets to mark, and over time urine can cause corrosion of the unit, and that will lead to other issues with your system. Be mindful of where your pet is using the restroom, and if possible, enclose your AC unit with fencing or barrier to keep it separate from children and pets altogether. Bonus? It's much less of an eyesore if you choose an attractive fencing option, and your curb appeal will increase! Another benefit of enclosing your unit is that it keeps all wires and cords protected from pets who like to chew, which is another issue owners can face, specifically those with dogs.
If your AC system is acting up, whether it's your pet's fault or not, you know who to call. Ridge Energy Savers will ALWAYS come to the rescue, and we are proud to serve the greater Polk County area with only the best in service. We are committed to making each client feel like a top priority, so give us a call when you need help to keep your cool (or warm up, thanks to the recent Florida temperatures)!
Ridge Energy Savers is proud to be a locally owned and operated business here in Winter Haven, and as such, we also enjoy supporting other local businesses. One of our favorites is Manny's Chophouse, a delicious, family-friendly restaurant with multiple locations throughout Polk County. We enjoy eating here often with our own families, and getting to see and interact with other people from around our area who are not only our client base, but also our friends and neighbors.
Since February is the "month of love", and with Valentine's Day on everyone's minds, we decided to combine our love of Manny's and supporting local business with our love for our customers, and do one GREAT giveaway over on our Facebook page. All of our supporters had the opportunity to be entered to win a $100 gift card to Manny's Chophouse by simply liking, sharing, and commenting on our giveaway post. We are thrilled to announce that Michelle Carter Reynolds won the giveaway and will be able to enjoy all the wonderful food and times at Manny's for months to come.
Thank you so much to everyone who supported our fun giveaway, and stay tuned for more in the future. We know that our businesses wouldn't exist without customers like YOU, and we want you to feel valued and appreciated. Our goal is to make each client feel like a top priority, so the next time your AC throws you a curve ball, or your heat just isn't keeping up, you know who to call. Ridge will always come to the rescue.
Humidity is a common topic here in Florida, as we typically have a higher-than-average level of moisture in the air, and we enjoy the benefits of not having dry air like our northern neighbors battle on a regular basis. However, the recent cold snap here in the Sunshine State has many of us running for blankets, stored-away jackets, and perhaps the humidifier our grandmother used when we had colds. Why are humidifiers so helpful during cold weather?
Well, there are many benefits to keeping moisture in the air inside your home, but a few key reasons include:
- Better health and shorter recovery. Studies show that viruses and bacteria can't travel as well in moist air, which means your household stays healthier during the cold and flu months. Additionally, moist air helps your body recover faster, since dry nasal passages and scratchy throats are more easily eliminated.
- Save money on utilities. Moist air tends to feel warmer than dry air, so instead of continuing to crank your heater up (and spend more $$$), you could invest in a humidifier system to improve the temperature of your home.
- Improved rest. Sleeping is hard when dry mouth and scratchy throat inhibit you from getting (and staying) comfortable. Dry air doesn't make a restful environment, and a humidifier can be the answer to that problem.
While a simple tabletop humidifier from a local drugstore is what people often think of, humidifiers for your home have made a lot of progress in recent years. Whole house humidifiers are one of the best options, especially for those of us in Florida where TOO much humidity can also be a problem. A whole house system is professionally installed to work with your HVAC system and your plumbing to release just the right amount of moisture into the air when needed, without overdoing it and causing problems of the other extreme (like mold and moisture damage). A whole house system can save you money because it lasts long-term, monitors the moisture levels and reacts accordingly, and works alongside your existing systems instead of inhibiting their efficiency.
Ridge Energy Savers Inc. is here to handle ALL of your HVAC needs, from simple repair and maintenance jobs, to full purchase and installation of systems. We serve the greater Polk County community, and our emergency service means we are never too far away to help. For your next HVAC emergency, remember to call Ridge to the Rescue!
Florida residents take our AC seriously. We will decide where to shop, where to eat, and where to go for fun based on if the place in question will have cool air, and if so, how much. It goes without saying then that we value our home HVAC systems pretty highly, and do our best to take care of them. We’ve all had a day when we return home, or a night when we wake up from peaceful sleep, to realize our house has climbed to 90 degrees and we’re left to suffer. However, having your AC stop cold turkey isn’t always the only sign that you need to call your AC professionals. There are other signs and “symptoms” that something could be going on, and you should call in help before it’s too late and you’re left sweating it out, literally.
Here are a few scenarios to watch for:
Your AC is running fine, the thermostat is set for your desired temp, but your house still feels hot. While this can sometimes be a personal perspective issue (as in, you just happen to feel warm at that moment) it can also indicate that you need to change your AC filter. Your AC can’t function at its best if you fail to maintain it, and monthly filter changes are part of that maintenance process.
Your AC is blowing air…but the air feels room temp, or worse, warm! This can indicate an issue with your refrigerant. The cooling agent in your AC could be leaking, and that means you need to call in the pros STAT.
Your unit is running ALL. THE. TIME. This could indicate a variety of issues, but one common problem is that the thermostat is bad. If it can’t properly read the temp and gets locked at a higher number, it’s going to turn on and stay on, or, if the thermostat is stuck at a low temp, it might not turn on at all.
You notice a leak! It can be easy to panic and think your roof, your pipes, or another major home repair has presented itself. In reality, your AC unit can cause leaks too! If the drain pipe has gotten clogged with ice or debris it can overflow, causing a “leak” of sorts. This problem is usually preceded by your AC showing other signs of problems (like not cooling your house!) but it’s still good to know that water coming from your unit is an automatic sign to call us.
For residents in and around the greater Polk County area, Ridge Energy Savers is ready to come to your rescue. Our job is to make sure your AC is doing it’s job, and we’re on call when you sound the alarm that something isn’t right. We offer both residential and commercial emergency service, and our skilled technicians are highly trained in all types of AC repair and parts replacement. We’re even here for you before there’s a problem, with our routine maintenance plan to keep your AC at its best.
The next time there’s a problem, keep your cool, and call Ridge Energy Savers!
Hurricane Irma left plenty of destruction in her wake around the entire Polk County area, and Ridge Energy Savers Inc. has been busy traveling throughout our area of Central Florida for AC repairs, refrigeration issues, and more. We have seen a lot over the last couple of weeks, from residential “quick-fixes” to larger-scale commercial property damage that will require extensive repair and rebuilding. All of this experience has taught us a lot about ways you can prepare for, and recover from, a hurricane from the HVAC and refrigeration standpoint.
First, GET ICE! It sounds silly to stock up on ice before you might lose refrigeration, but ice can actually help you out if the power is out but your food needs to stay cold. Packing your fridge (and freezer) with plenty of ice in all the empty spaces can keep your food cold for many hours longer than food left without the extra help, and that could save you hundreds of dollars in groceries. Be sure to think outside the box…or, the ice chest rather…and don’t just purchase bagged ice cubes. Fill up containers of all sizes with water, and freeze them to make customized ice packs. Perk? As they melt, they create fresh drinking water for you that’s already chilled!
Another important tip during the aftermath of a hurricane is to keep your fridge CLOSED if you’ve lost power. Minimize how many times you open the fridge since this helps keep cold air trapped inside, and that will help your food last longer. Think of your fridge like a giant cooler and plan ahead to make the most of each time the door is open.
Finally, when it comes to AC and comfortable temperatures during the aftermath of a storm like Hurricane Irma, there is no “easy” fix, but we do have a few tips. If you can afford to purchase a generator or if you already have one, fans will be your friend. Place them strategically in front of open windows to pull in a breeze and create air movement within the space. For an extra cool burst (particularly at night) hang a damp (not soaking) sheet in front of the open window and place the fan in front of that. The wet sheet cools the air coming through the window, and the fan helps distribute the cool air. It isn’t a great solution, but it might help you get a little more rest than staring at the ceiling and meditating on the heat and humidity. Another helpful hint is to take a cool bath or shower (not hard, since your hot water heater will be out too!) right before you try to sleep. It will cool you down enough to, hopefully, help you relax.
Of course, there is no easy preparation for, or recovery from, any type of major storm, but there are ways to make it better for you and your family. Now that we are getting back to life here in Polk County, most people are enjoying their AC systems with a new appreciation. However, if your power was restored but your AC is not, it might be time to give us a call. Ridge Energy Savers offers emergency services and we can be out to find the problem, fix it, and help you “chill out” after a hard week. Let us help you keep your cool as we all rebuild together!
Unlike some of our northern neighbors, summer in Florida is actually not the best time for camping. Our high humidity, high temperatures, and almost daily storms during the summer months don’t make for great camping conditions, and no one wants to go on vacation only to be miserable the entire trip. However, as we face down Fall coming up in September, camp-goers will start to come out in droves, heading to the plentiful state parks, beaches, and RV resorts to enjoy the mild Floridian Fall and Winter seasons. Even with “mild” temperatures though, camping can get warm here in the Sunshine State. So, how can you keep cool if your camping setup doesn’t include an AC unit?
First, evaluate your campsite. If you know you’ll have power hookup, you can bring along a fan (or two!) and an extension cord to keep your tent or camper cool. If you set them up opposite open windows, you can create a cross-breeze that will be quite comfortable. Also take shade into consideration when setting up camp. Place your tent or camper in the most shaded spot of your campsite so as to avoid mid-day temperature jumps when the sun is overhead.
When evaluating your site and setup, take time to consider your wardrobe choices as well. During the day, opt for lightweight, breathable clothing, and steer clear of heavy materials that will hold excess heat. At night, have options available to choose from, since temperatures can vary greatly from one evening to the next. Have comfortable, cool sleepwear choices but have a sweatshirt and some jogging pants thrown in your bag as well in case there is an unexpected cool snap overnight and you are left shivering in your tent.
Finally, for daytime heat, plan activities that help you keep cool. Swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding, boating, surfing, waterskiing, and even plain old beach combing are wonderful ways to enjoy Florida’s natural beauty, and stay cool at the same time! If you’ve come home from your most recent camping trip and have discovered that your home is just as hot as your tent, we’re ready and waiting to come the rescue. We offer 24-hour emergency AC repair services, as well as routine maintenance packages, commercial service, and more. We serve the greater Polk County area so we can be at your home and have your system up and running sooner.
Keep your cool in the great outdoors, AND at home. Happy camping!
Allergies are currently wreaking havoc on many Central Florida residents right now, thanks to the plentiful summer grasses and pollens. Sneezing, itchy eyes, scratch throat, and runny nose are just a few of the unpleasant symptoms being enjoyed by people throughout Polk County, and when paired with the excessive heat we’ve been experiencing recently, it makes for a very unenjoyable summer. While we can’t do anything about the conditions outside your home, we can help with your indoor environment. Here are a few tips to help you keep the allergens outside where they belong and make your home allergy-friendly for you and anyone else who comes your way.
- Check sealing around doors and windows. These wear out over time, and lead to spaces that not only let your cool air out (and hot air in) but also let in dust, dirt, pollen, and even curious bugs. Replace sealing as needed to keep your home cool AND free of allergens.
- Invest in a vacuum with a good filtration system. As you’re cleaning, you don’t want the dirt and dust you pull out of carpets and furniture to be redistributed into the air of your home. A vacuum with a HEPA filter (and/or special allergy-friendly filtration systems) will keep dust in the canister where it belongs, and leave your air clean.
- Vacuum often. Speaking of vacuuming, do it often! Carpets, rugs, furniture, and curtains are notorious for holding onto dust and allergens. Vacuum often, and take out rugs, curtains, and other removable fabrics to be shaken and/or laundered periodically.
- Use cleaning cloths that hold onto dust and dirt. When you wipe down surfaces, don’t just spread dust from point A to point B. Invest in good cleaning solutions that hold onto dust and dirt and allow you to launder them and send the allergens out of your home where they belong. Additionally, when cleaning, look for products that are allergy friendly and free of heavy perfumes or aerosols that can further aggravate the respiratory systems of those who suffer from allergy symptoms.
- Don’t forget accessories! Computer systems and televisions, fans, and even books can hold onto dust and aggravate allergies if not cleaned occasionally.
The best way to cut down on allergies in your home? Make sure your air filter is replaced regularly, and your HVAC system is running at its best. When your AC is struggling, your air quality will suffer and so will you. Ridge Energy Savers Inc. offers routine maintenance on your HVAC system, including filter replacements. Let us do the hard work for you, and help you keep your home allergy-friendly all year long.
Homeowners know the importance of maintenance, and often they choose to be proactive and invest in plans for routine inspections and “tune-ups” for their appliances and major home systems. Here in Florida, the HVAC system is especially important since our temperatures soar during the summer, and remain relatively high for the majority of the year. Businesses have just as much need of HVAC maintenance as residential customers, yet they often opt out of maintenance plans and agreements, and instead use service only when something goes wrong.
This is really not the best scenario, since restaurants usually have customers dining in, and the majority of their livelihood depends on the food within their industrial fridges and freezers. If you own a restaurant, consider this: waiting until your HVAC system or commercial refrigeration has an issue, or worse, goes out altogether, could cost you hundreds in profit and lost materials. Think about a typical day in your business, and then picture it without a functional AC and/or no refrigeration. Your staff, and your customers, will be uncomfortable and hot, and that usually puts everyone in a foul mood. No refrigeration means meat, dairy, and produce will begin to spoil, so you are forced to cook everything at once and then keep it at the appropriate temperature to maintain codes, OR you just accept that you’ll lose food and toss stuff as it climbs above the permitted temperature. If you ignore the health codes, and are caught, you could be facing even MORE lost profit since you’ll be paying fines and could even be shut down periodically.
All that money lost would more than pay for a maintenance plan for your HVAC system and refrigeration appliances in your restaurant. A maintenance plan covers routine inspections where potential issues can be discovered early before they cause bigger problems. Even better? With Ridge Energy Savers, local Polk County maintenance agreement customers get 10% off parts for repairs needed during these inspections, so you’re actually saving money in the long run!
Protect your restaurant and your money. Give us a call about our maintenance plan and how it can work for you.
Summer nights bring all kinds of things to mind, like evenings spent on porches with friends, catching fireflies, enjoying homemade ice cream, and, if you’re here in Central Florida…extra-large mosquitoes and spending bedtime uncomfortable, sweaty, and sticky. Sounds great, right?
While we are kidding (partially) about the joys of summer nights in Florida, the reality is that without your AC unit, nights would be pretty miserable. If your AC has gone out at nighttime before, and you’ve had to endure the night without its help, you probably have some pretty unpleasant memories of tossing and turning trying to find a cool, comfortable spot on the bed but none was to be found. While nothing replaces the comfort of an AC system during the heat here in Florida, there are ways you can manage when the temperatures soar inside AND outside your home.
- Bring in reinforcements. Hot water bottles make great ice packs to keep yourself cool in bed. Opt to place them near your feet, or at pulse points, to get maximum benefit. A sock filled with rice and chilled in the freezer for an hour or two also makes a great ice pack in a pinch.
- Head to bed prepared. Taking a shower right before bed using tepid water is a great way to lower your core body temperature. Sleep in lightweight, breathable cotton clothing like shorts and a loose t-shirt to wick away moisture and enjoy airflow.
- Make the most of your fan. If you have a fan (or two) you can help it reach maximum cooling power by placing it in front of an open window to pump hot air out of the room and help bring down the temp. Another tip? Hang a wet sheet over an open window to help cool airflow coming through, or place a pan of ice in front of your fan to blow a cool mist over you while you try to fall asleep.
The best way to survive summer nights? Don’t go without your AC in the first place! Ridge Energy Savers Inc. offers emergency services, so as long as you give us a call, you’ll be enjoying your cool air again in no time. Don’t sit around waiting in the heat for a standard repair service. Call us next time you’re in need, and let Ridge come to the rescue!
Because of our extreme temperatures and constant need for cooling our homes, we continually discuss how important routine maintenance and prompt repair are for your AC system here at Ridge Energy. While we are proud to provide these services for the greater Polk County area, we can’t keep your AC running at its best on our own. You have to invest some of your own time and energy into keeping your system functioning, and while it’s not hard to do, it is hard to remember to put on your to-do list when life gets crazy.
We thought you might appreciate this handy reminder list of things to do for your AC all year long. Copy it and print it out, stick it in your planner or on your fridge, and make it easy to remember to care for your AC this summer!
- Change your air filter often. Preferably, you should change your filter every month. While some filters boast of a 3 month or more lifespan, it’s actually healthier for you AND for your AC system if you opt for the cheaper filters and just take the time to change them each month. This helps keep your air cleaner, and your AC functioning better.
- Clear any debris and/or yard growth away from your outdoor AC unit. Overgrowth can lead to issues with your unit. When you are already outside mowing your lawn, go ahead and take a few extra minutes to trim around your AC unit. Grass, weeds, and shrubs can crowd in on your AC, and that can lead to problems over time. Dust off any cobwebs or debris that might have fallen on it since the last cleaning too!
- Clean the indoor grates. The metal grate that covers your AC filter, and the grates that cover the ductwork leading into each room, are a gathering place for dust and dirt. Periodically dust them, and if they are easily removed, take them outside and hose them down. This will improve the air quality throughout your home!
Of course, these simple routine tips aren’t all your AC needs to be functioning at its highest capacity. HVAC systems need annual inspections of their various parts and a thorough internal cleaning as well. Ridge Energy Savers can take care of that for you! If your AC unit is on the fritz, don’t suffer in the heat! We provide emergency AC repair services to the greater Winter Haven area of Central Florida. We’ll make sure you keep your cool, so give us a call!
Ridge Energy Savers is proud to offer emergency HVAC services to both residential and business locations throughout the Polk County area here in Central Florida. However, an equally important part of our business is routine maintenance of AC systems, yet many homeowners (and business owners) don’t understand the importance of this service. Annual maintenance on your HVAC system not only keeps things operating at their best, but it also helps with recognizing any potential problems before they become serious, meaning you can get them fixed quickly before they ever affect your cool air in your home, or the function of your AC.
So, what can you expect when you call us for a routine maintenance inspection?
Our preventative maintenance checklist covers:
- Check electrical connections and safety controls.
- Check voltage and amperage on compressor and motor.
- Check all motors, oil, and adjust v-belts as needed.
- Check starting and running components.
- Calibrate thermostat and low voltage wiring.
- Check defrost cycle and reversing valve operation.
- Lubricate all moving parts where necessary.
- Clean condenser coil.
- Check and clean condensate drains.
- Clean blower wheel.
- Add Anti-Algae tablets to condensate pan.
- Check refrigerant level.
- Check air flow and tempature.
- Supply a written report of systems current condition upon completion of maintenance.
We will also address any questions or concerns you may personally have at these visits, and do our best to explain what you need to know. If any issues are found during our inspection, we can make suggestions about the next step to take, and how we can help.
We really are your one-stop for all your HVAC needs, and our goal is to offer the top-quality in not only products, but also in customer service. Call us today to schedule your preventative maintenance inspection on your AC before the summer temperatures soar. No one wants to be left without respite from the Florida heat, and we can make sure you won’t be. Ridge Energy Savers is ready to help you keep your cool this summer!
Here in Central Florida, humidity is joked about, complained about, and pretty much one of our primary characterization factors as a whole. Our almost tropical climate lends itself to high levels of moisture in the air through much of the year, especially in the spring and summer months, and that can lead to a miserable existence, especially if you don’t know how to properly manage humidity levels inside your home. Keeping the moisture down inside your house is important since high humidity in your home can lead to many issues, including:
- mold and mildew
- water (moisture) damage
- dust mites (they thrive on humidity)
- difficulty managing the temperature inside your home
Reducing humidity in your house means you will not only be more comfortable, but you will mitigate many of these risks. With a few simple measures you can help maintain the proper moisture level in your home, and lower the humidity. How?
First, ventilate, ventilate, ventilate. Ever gone camping? Even in mild temperatures, the temp inside a tent can rise quickly if you have the windows shut, and you’ll notice moisture developing inside the tent walls. By opening the windows, you release the water vapor being released by your own breathing, and you’ll notice that the temperature not only seems much cooler inside, but drier as well! The same concept applies to your house. Moisture will accumulate inside if you don’t have proper ventilation, especially in areas like kitchens, bathrooms, and even laundry rooms. Use vent fans whenever possible, and in bathrooms, leave them running for a period of time after taking a shower to help remove moisture remaining in the air. Don’t have vent fans? Crack windows near the area to let moisture out, and consider placing a regular fan in the path of the doorway to pump air (and water vapor) out.
Also, avoid adding to the humidity in your home when possible. For example, instead of a long, hot shower, aim for a short, cooler shower instead. Instead of using your dishwasher for a small load, hand wash your dishes instead to avoid the humidity released as the washer runs. Even small decisions such as these can have a big impact! Also reduce the number of houseplants in your home, or opt for plants that pull their water from the air around them. ALL plants release water into the air, but some are better than others for keeping the humidity down in your home. Another fun tip? Send your kids out to play! Each person emits approximately 1/4 cup of water each hour simply by breathing. Fewer people in the house means less moisture in the air!
Finally, consider investing in a dehumidifier if lesser measures fail to give you the results you want. Investing in this piece of equipment will save you money in the long run if your moisture levels are causing mold, mildew, and rot issues in your home. The cost of repairs and renovations that this could lead to are much higher than what a small dehumidifier for your bathroom or basement will be.
Another important piece of equipment for managing the temperature and humidity levels in your home? Your HVAC system. Maintaining the indoor temperature relative to the outside temperature is vital in keeping humidity levels where they should be. Your air conditioner and/or heater play a huge role in this process. Failure to maintain them and letting them falter will not only mean a VERY uncomfortable environment for you, but will also cause moisture issues like those we mentioned above. Prevent this from happening by scheduling routine maintenance of your HVAC system. For residents in and around the Polk County area, Ridge Energy Savers is here for you! We offer emergency repair services, as well as maintenance and cleaning on HVAC systems. Schedule your appointment today before our Florida summer temperatures arrive!