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Efficiency Facts
May, 2014 - Issue #115
"Efficiency" is one of the trendiest home topics in recent history, and with good reason: it's synonymous with saving money.

Keep it Cool:
Turn off the air conditioner and open windows and screened doors in the evening for a free cooling affect. Close 'em up in the early morning before the heat sets in. You should be able to comfortably go without the air conditioner 'til about 11am on the hottest of days.

Keep it Cool:
Swap your cotton bedding for satin pillowcases and sheets to stay luxuriously cool all night long.

courtesy of Shutterstock
courtesy of Shutterstock
When it comes to Solar,
Efficiency and Installation Matter

Throughout Southern California there are many solar companies that focus solely on the cost of solar energy. However, two other factors often overlooked in going solar are the efficiency of solar panels and the installation of solar panels. Located in Valencia, SunPower by Green Convergence cares that homeowners are not only eliminating their electric bills, but also that they have the highest-efficiency solar panels with the greatest-quality installation.

Using roofing and electrical contractors with over 30 years of experience, Green Convergence installs a 50-year warrantied Owen's Corning roof under the entire solar array and solar panels that are flush with the rest of the homeowner's roof and only uses SunPower panels that are capable of 21.5 percent efficiency, which is the highest-efficiency solar panel worldwide. Bonus: You can monitor your system's efficiency and energy savings directly from your mobile device. 294-9999

courtesy of Shutterstock
courtesy of Shutterstock
Keep it Cool:
Turn on your ceiling fans and feel up to 10 percent cooler without touching the thermostat.

Replacement Windows' High Resale Value
is as Impressive as their Energy-cost Savings

Replacing your windows not only adds to the overall aesthetic look and feel of your home or business, but it also helps lower your heating and energy bills. In addition, recent research indicates that new windows can help reduce unwanted sounds of traffic, airplanes and other forms of noise pollution.
This recent national research study looked at the cost to replace windows in a medium-sized home and how much this project would add to a home's value, should the home be sold a year later. It found that for the 20 major markets served, the average rate of the window replacement cost that was recouped was 99.2 percent. This research study, conducted by Remodeling Magazine, utilized professional opinions of over 1,600 real-estate agents and appraisers in the top remodel markets who are members of the National Association of Realtors. In Los Angeles and Ventura County, a recent survey recorded an average heating and cooling cost savings of more than 15 percent, meaning that replacement windows will start paying for themselves as soon as they are installed.

When you work with Preferred Glass & Windows, installation is quick and economical - it is usually a one-day process, which results in added savings! Preferred Glass & Windows has replaced and installed thousands of doors and windows in all shapes and sizes; from vinyl, fiberglass and aluminum, to wood clad and more, and they provide free estimates, too. 298-2165

courtesy of Shutterstock
courtesy of Shutterstock
Keep it Cool:
Never underestimate the power of the popsicle!

Keep it Cool:
What you do outside will affect how you feel inside. Shade trees, climbing ivy and other plants, when placed against or in close proximity to your house will block the sun's rays and keep you cooler in the summer while increasing your curb appeal, too.

"Repair" isn't Always
Cheaper than "Replacement"

When something breaks down, it's tempting to go the quick route and pay for repairs to get it up and running again. That quick-fix may seem the least expensive route now, but it may not offer the most value in the long run. Newer equipment provides a higher energy-efficient SEER rating, quieter operation, a reduction in your monthly energy bill and improved comfort in your home. We're impressed by the "Repair or Replace?" quiz available on GW Richardson Heating & Air's website. Answer only a few questions (About the age of your current system, the estimated cost of repair and a few other bits.) and it'll run the numbers for you. If you do decide to opt for a replacement, you'll be able to grab website-only deals while you're there. 295-0115

photography by Ted Dayton
photography by Ted Dayton
Keep it Cool:
Take advantage of heat-repelling window fashions like plantation shutters, honey-comb blinds and lined curtains by closing them during the warmest parts of the day.

Keep it Cool:
Incandescent light blubs bump up your home's temperature. If you haven't switched to CFLs or LEDs, now is the time.
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