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Monthly Archives: March 2018

  • The Benefits of Programmable Thermostats for Businesses

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    No matter what type of business you run, keeping the building at a comfortable temperature is a key priority. If you’re in retail, you want your customers to feel comfortable enough to browse the shelves for impulse buys, even after they’ve found what they were initially looking for. If you’re in charge of an office, you want to make sure that the temperature of the building doesn’t interfere with work productivity. At the same time, as a business owner or manager, you also have to consider the costs associated with heating and cooling.

    When you’re trying to achieve an optimal temperature balance on a tight budget, you may want to think about getting a programmable thermostat. Read on to learn why programmable thermostats make sense in business environments.

    Programming Your Workplace Environment in Advance

    With traditional, non-programmable thermostats, someone in the office has to set the temperature manually in order to ensure that the building remains at the right temperature. Whether you plan to do it yourself or rely on one of your employees, manual management of the thermostat poses a risk for unintended consequences. For instance, if someone accidentally forgets to turn down the thermostat for the night in the dead of winter, you may find that heating costs are starting to eat into your budget. At the same time, when someone overlooks the need to turn on the air conditioner, customers and employees alike may find themselves sweaty and uncomfortable in the heat of summer, which can lower sales and/or productivity. With a programmable thermostat, you can reduce the risk of human error by setting the thermostat to be on when you need it and off when you don’t.

    In addition, a programmable thermostat allows you to prepare for expected changes in temperature. During the winter, you probably don’t want to run your heater at night, but if you program your thermostat to start running an hour before people start arriving for work, you can ensure that they won’t spend their first hour trying to thaw their fingers instead of advancing organizational goals. If you live in a place where there is a temperature swing in the summer, you can do the same thing with the air conditioning--making a plan to ensure that the cooling system turns on in time for the heat of the day--but no sooner--and turns off by the time people start to head home.

    Key Features for Business Owners

    Aside from the general benefits of being able to program your thermostat, there are a few other benefits that many programmable thermostats offer for businesses. These include:

     

    • A warranty, which will ensure that you are making a good investment when you buy a programmable thermostat.
    • Power source options, so you can decide whether it is more cost-effective for you to use batteries or hardwiring to run your thermostat.
    • Low upfront costs, which typically range between $85 and $125.
    • Free shipping -- if you order from National Air Warehouse!

     
    National Air Warehouse offers a variety of programmable thermostats that can meet the needs of business owners around the country. Contact us today to find the right product for you!

  • Insulated Flexible Duct Decisions: Price Considerations for Cost-Savvy Customers

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    In last week’s post, we talked about the performance considerations that homeowners and home builders must make when choosing between insulated flexible duct options. When it comes to the choice between products, cost is often the other major factor that you may be considering. Whether you’re trying to optimize the heating and cooling system in your own home or working to meet the needs of your clients as a home builder, it is important to ensure that the duct you choose falls within your short-term and long-term budget. There are two main factors that affect the prices of insulated flexible ducts: diameter and R-value. Read on to learn more about the direct (and indirect) costs (and savings) associated with each.

    The Impacts of Duct Diameter and R-Value on Cost

    In general, the lengths of insulated flexible ducts are standardized around 25 feet, regardless of their diameter. That way, you always have the option of cutting the duct to whatever length you  need. As duct diameter increases, so does the amount of insulation in a 25-foot-long duct, which explains the simultaneous increase in price. When you think about buying a duct with a larger diameter, you also have to consider the cost of the supports that you will need to prevent the duct from sagging when you install it. Ideally, you want to prevent the duct from sagging by more than about two-and-a-half inches, so with large-diameter ducts, you should plan to us a support every four feet.

    As you consider the upfront costs of ducts, the other key factor is the R-value. The R-value indicates the effectiveness of the insulation, with a higher R-value associated with higher effectiveness. Insulated flexible ducts can range between R4 and R8, and the price increases for higher R-values. At the same time, choosing a duct with a higher R-value may save you money in the long run--especially if you live in a cold area--since ducts with higher R-values are more effective for trapping heat and can therefore help lower your energy bills.

    The Relationship between R-Value and Duct Diameters: Ratings vs. True R-Values

    When you’re thinking about energy savings, it is also important to acknowledge the interplay between R-value and duct diameter. A duct with a 6-inch diameter and a duct with a 14-inch diameter may both be rated R6, but the true R-value -- that is, the true effectiveness of the insulation for retaining heat -- is higher for the 14-inch duct, simply because the larger amount of material makes it harder for heat to escape. That means that R-value ratings are can only truly be compared for ducts of the same diameter. Therefore, the discrepancy between R-value ratings and true R-values is another factor that you should keep in mind as you weigh the short-term and long-term financial costs of different insulated flexible duct options.
    At National Air Warehouse, you can find competitively priced insulated flexible ducts with R6 and R8 ratings, ranging in diameter from 4 inches to 20 inches. Contact us today for more help finding the right one for your project!

  • Choosing Between Insulated Flexible Duct Options for Your Home: Performance Considerations for Homeowners and Home Builders

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    Last week on the blog, we talked about installing and/or replacing ducts in a mobile home. Today, we’re going to discuss the insulated flexible ductwork choices that can work for any type of home or business. For home builders who are looking to install ductwork for the first time or homeowners who are looking to repair ducts that are faulty and/or damaged, it is important to recognize the differences between the different options on the market -- and what these differences mean in terms of the performance of the product.

    How R-Value Affects the Performance of an Insulated Flexible Duct

    When you are considering the performance of insulated flexible ducts, the measure you want to look at is the thermal resistance, also known as the R-value. The R-value is a measure of the effectiveness of the insulation. For an insulated flexible duct, this value is determined by factors such as the composition of the insulation material, its thickness, and its density. A higher R-value means that the insulation will be more effective, which is particularly important in cold climates, where high-level insulation performance is essential in order to keep the building warm when temperatures drop below freezing.

    The Performance Benefits of a Metalized Jacket for an Insulated Flexible Duct

    Another aspect of an insulated flexible duct that can play a role in its performance is its metalized jacket. You’ll find metalized jackets offered on insulated flexible ducts for most types of buildings because they offer protective benefits. Specifically, the metalized jacket can keep water out, which reduces the risk that moisture will interfere with the functioning of your heating and cooling system. The metalized jacket also provides a protective barrier against other potential sources of damage to the duct, such as dust buildup or animals that chew through the insulation.

    Some metalized jackets, commonly known as “silver jackets,” have an additional performance benefit -- they absorb noise. For homeowners who are looking to stifle disruptive sounds, a silver flex metalized jacket noise absorption is a significant performance benefit when choosing between insulated flexible ducts. If your vision of top-performing ductwork is a duct that supports a quiet atmosphere, a duct with a silver metalized jacket is probably your best option.

     

    National Air Warehouse offers high-performing flexible ducts that can meet the needs of any homeowner or home builder. Contact us today for more information about our products!

  • Installing or Replacing a Duct for a Mobile Home: Getting the Parts You Need

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    Mobile homes are on the rise in the United States. In 2016 alone, over 81,000 mobile homes were sold and shipped, which was a 15 percent increase over 2015. According to the latest survey data, there are seventeen states in which at least one out of every ten housing units is a mobile home, and in some states, that number is closer to one in five. If you’re a home remodeler (or a mobile home resident yourself), you need to be ready to deal with possible heating and cooling system challenges, such as a situation where you need to install or replace some of the ductwork. Read on for more information about choosing a flexible mobile home duct.

    Choosing High Quality Insulation for a Flexible Mobile Home Duct

    One of the defining factors that determines the quality of a flexible mobile home duct is the effectiveness and durability of the insulation. In fact, the reason that most mobile home owners find themselves having to replace a flexible duct is that there has been damage to the insulation. For instance, an animal like a mouse might have chewed through the insulation, or the insulation could be damaged by the buildup of mold or mildew. Not only does insulation damage reduce the effectiveness of the mobile home’s heating and cooling system, but it can also make it easier for dirt and dust to build up in the ductwork, or even for animals or reptiles to take up residence.

    When you are choosing a new flexible duct for a mobile home, you should look for an option with an insulation rating of at least R4. The R-value is an indicator of a material’s insulating effectiveness, and an R4 value is considered to be acceptable for mobile home duct insulation material.

    The Size of the Duct: Length and Diameter Considerations

    When choosing a flexible mobile home duct, there are two size considerations: the length and the diameter. Usually, it’s best to find a duct that is at least 25 feet long. Even if it’s more than you need, you can always cut it shorter to fulfill the specifications of your heating and cooling systems.

    More importantly, you need to determine the appropriate diameter to fit the mobile home’s heating and cooling system. Duct diameters range between 8 and 14 inches, and the price varies based on the diameter. A duct with a diameter of 8 inches may be less than 100 dollars, while you can expect to pay closer to 200 for a duct of the same length with a 14-inch diameter, because of the extra insulation material.
    No matter what diameter you’re looking for, National Air Warehouse has the insulated flexible home duct you need. Contact us today for more information!

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