Category Archives: Thermostats

Why You Should Replace Your Thermostat When You Get a New HVAC System

Why You Should Replace Your Thermostat When You Get a New HVAC SystemIf you need a new air conditioner this summer, think beyond replacing your system. You might also want to consider getting a new thermostat while you’re at it. When you replace thermostat, you’ll have a better chance to make sure your new air conditioning system is running as efficiently as possible.

The Connection Between Thermostats and Air Conditioners

Your thermostat plays an important role in helping your air conditioner run when it should. Any problems with your thermostat can lead to your air conditioning running more often than it should or not running enough. Having your new air conditioner run more often than it needs to leads to more wear and tear on it, which can shorten its life span. You can also expect to have higher energy bills when this happens, since your system is using more energy. If your air conditioning doesn’t run enough because your thermostat says it’s cooler in your home than it really is, you might set it higher. This can also lead to your air conditioning running more often than normal, resulting in higher energy bills and an increased risk of having it break down.

Manual vs. Digital Thermostat

When you decide to replace thermostat with your air conditioner, keep in mind that you should make the switch to a digital thermostat. These thermostats have the settings needed to help newer air conditioners run efficiently. A manual thermostat might compromise your new air conditioner’s ability to cool your home while using less energy, since the settings aren’t as precise.

Greater Convenience

Another reason to replace thermostat with your air conditioning is that it’s easier to have both done at once rather than having them replaced at separate times. While you’re having your air conditioning replaced, technicians can take care of installing a brand new thermostat and making sure that it works correctly. This can give you peace of mind that your air conditioner will run smoothly all summer long.

If you need a new HVAC system and thermostat, please contact Roth Heating & Cooling. We offer dependable HVAC services in the Portland area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Upgrade Indoor Home Comfort With a Wi-Fi Thermostat

Upgrade Indoor Home Comfort With a Wi-Fi ThermostatWhen it comes to making your Portland home more comfortable throughout the year, making the switch to a Wi-Fi thermostat can help. This type of thermostat offers a number of benefits compared to standard thermostats. Knowing more about these thermostats can help you decide whether or not to invest in one for your home.

How They Work

Wi-Fi thermostats are designed to adjust the temperature in your home just as standard thermostats do. However, these thermostats can be programmed and adjusted from any device in your home or even on devices that you have with you while you’re away from home. This convenience offers several important advantages over standard thermostats and makes it easier for you to keep your home comfortable at any time.

Benefits of Wi-Fi Thermostats

Wi-Fi thermostats can be programmed to gather information on the current conditions inside your home and adjust the temperature accordingly. This means that you don’t have to worry about remembering to turn the thermostat up or down before leaving the house or before heading to bed. Your thermostat can handle that for you, which helps ensure that your home stays as cool or as warm as you need it to be.

These thermostats can also be programmed or adjusted from nearly any location, as long as you have Wi-Fi access. You can program your Wi-Fi thermostat or make changes to it from your mobile phone, laptop or tablet when you’re out and about. Even if you are traveling or away on vacation, you can still program your thermostat as needed to make sure your home doesn’t get too hot or cold.

Some Wi-Fi thermostats can also alert you when your HVAC system starts running less efficiently than normal. This helps ensure that you have your system inspected and repaired as needed.

If you need more information on getting a Wi-Fi thermostat for your home, please contact Roth Heating & Cooling. We offer reliable HVAC services in the Portland area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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Signs It’s Time for Thermostat Replacement

Signs It's Time for Thermostat ReplacementIf it’s time for thermostat replacement, will you recognize the warning signs? Thermostat malfunctions may be very conspicuous or they may be quite subtle, like simply poor efficiency and diminished indoor comfort. While a few DIY fixes may remedy simple problems, thermostat replacement is usually the more cost-effective way to deal with major malfunctions. In many cases, it’s also an opportunity to upgrade to a more advanced, digital thermostat, as well.

Here are some common issues that may warrant thermostat replacement:

  • Thermostat actuates at wrong temperature. If your thermostat activates the A/C or furnace at some temperature other than the one it’s set for, the thermostat sensor is out of calibration or defective. Some units have an adjustment that allows you to adjust thermostat calibration by plus or minus 5 degrees. However, if the difference between the thermostat setting and the temperature where it actuates is more than 5 degrees, replacing the thermostat is the only option.
  • Rapid on/off cycling. Temperature changes caused by a nearby exterior door opening and closing, or exposure to direct sunlight, may turn the HVAC system on and off too frequently. Relocating the thermostat may help. An over-sized furnace or A/C may cycle frequently, as well. If neither of these explanations applies, the issue is almost certainly thermostat-related and replacement is indicated.
  • Functions run nonstop. If the Heat or Cool functions stay on continuously without cycling off, first make sure the thermostat is set to Auto and the desired thermostat temperature setting is correct. If those check out, replacing the thermostat is probably the right call.
  • Thermostat is obsolete. An outmoded manual thermostat is a throwback to a bygone era of cheap energy and less convenience. The price of a new digital programmable thermostat will be compensated by lower monthly heating/cooling costs in the first year of operation. The user-friendly features offered by a digital model are also a vast improvement over the old-school manual model.

If your seeing signs that it’s time for thermostat replacement, contact the experts at Roth Heating & Cooling.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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On or Auto: Which is the Better Thermostat Setting for Your Canby Home?

On or Auto: Which is the Better Thermostat Setting for Your Canby Home?By understanding your thermostat’s fan settings, you will gain more control over your comfort and potential energy savings. The decision to use the “on” or the “auto” setting plays an important role in how your home feels, air quality and operating expenses. Here is how these settings compare to each other.

General Comfort

When you have set the fan control to “on,” it will run continuously even when the air conditioner has finished a cycle and is not actively cooling the air. This increases comfort because air temperature in the home remains more even. Instead of a sudden halt to cool air, you will notice a more gradual change. For instance, the ductwork will still be cool from the previous cycle and, unless something has gone amiss, air coming from the registers should still be relatively cool. In addition, the flow of air will have time to permeate the home’s rooms and diminish warm spots.

Air Quality

Setting the fan to “on” is also the better choice regarding indoor air quality. The constant flow of air prevents stagnation and since the air is moving through the air filter more often, the result is cleaner air.

Expense

The “auto” thermostat setting typically comes out ahead in a positive way regarding monthly energy costs. It uses less energy because the fan runs only a short amount of time and at a relatively slow speed.

However, the fan will experience more wear and tear at this setting. Like many types of mechanical devices, the strain of starting and stopping can be greater than if it were left continually running.

When you upgrade your air conditioner, you can get around the drawbacks of both settings by choosing one with a variable speed fan motor. Fan speed is automatically adjusted to meet the immediate climate needs of the home. Most of the time the fan runs at very low speeds, and this reduces the operating costs while offering more comfort and improved air quality.

For more about choosing the right thermostat setting and saving energy, please contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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The Benefits of a Wi-Fi Thermostat in Your Home

The Benefits of a Wi-Fi Thermostat in Your HomeEven in the mild Portland-area climate, it can be hard to maintain indoor temperatures that are both comfortable and energy efficient. A Wi-Fi thermostat helps you do this even when you’re not at home.

The Wi-Fi Thermostat Difference

A programmable thermostat allows you to select different temperatures for different time periods during the day. Once programmed, the thermostat automatically keeps your home at your preferred temperatures. This lets you run your system at the most efficient temperatures without the hassle of constantly fussing with the thermostat.

The downside is that you can change the thermostat temperatures only when you’re at home. If anything changes while you’re out, you have no way to adjust the thermostat in response. A Wi-Fi thermostat is synced with your home’s Wi-Fi router, allowing it to connect to the Internet. This lets you adjust the thermostat from anywhere through a computer or an app on your smartphone.

What a Wi-Fi Thermostat Can Do for You

Convenient monitoring — Your thermostat will send an alert to your smartphone if your home’s temperature rises or falls outside your selected range or if the system shuts off unexpectedly. This way you’ll be able to keep your home’s temperatures under control to avoid energy waste.

Comfort you can count on — If your plans change while you’re away from home, you can easily adjust your thermostat temperature as necessary from your office or anywhere else. When you find out you’ll be getting home earlier than expected, you can select a temperature that will ensure your home is comfortable when you get in. End up staying out late? Select a more energy-efficient temperature for that time.

Carefree travel — During your vacations and weekends away, you can rest assured your thermostat will let you know if a problems arises. If the weather changes suddenly, you can adjust your thermostat settings as necessary to protect your home from damage.

If you want to enjoy a thermostat like this in your home, get in touch with us at Roth Heating & Cooling in the Portland area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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How You Can Reset Your Programmable Thermostat


How You Can Reset Your Programmable Thermostat
With the summer cooling season over, now is the time to think about how to keep your home warm this coming winter. Of course, you may still have summertime settings left over in your programmable thermostat. The following shows how you can reset your thermostat for optimal savings and heating comfort this winter.

Resetting Your Thermostat

You can start off by wiping your thermostat’s slate clean through a reset, which will clear all settings and return it back to its factory state. Thermostat controls tend to vary among manufacturers and models, so you may need to consult your thermostat’s user guide for more detailed steps.

Temperature Setbacks for Cooler Weather

Temperatures of around 68 to 72 degrees are not only comfortable with the right amount of clothing, but they’ll also help you keep your heating bills to a minimum. You can set your thermostat at these temperatures while you’re at home for maximum comfort.

Just as you would during the summer, you should program your thermostat to set itself back 10 to 15 degrees during periods when your home is empty (for example, while you and your loved ones are away at work or school). You can also use these setbacks as you sleep, since you’ll be in bed and won’t need as much heat from your HVAC system as you’d normally would while you’re up and about.

You’ll be able to save a significant percentage on your annual heating bills, especially if the setback period lasts for eight hours.

Contact the professionals at Roth Heating & Cooling to discover more programmable thermostat savings. We proudly serve Portland and the surrounding area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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Looking to Save Money This Fall? Turn Down Your Water Heater Temperature

Looking to Save Money This Fall? Turn Down Your Water Heater TemperatureSaving energy saves money. It also reduces your Portland home’s carbon footprint, which helps the environment and preserves resources. If you haven’t considered that your water heater temperature can affect energy bills, you may want to reconsider. Read on for easy energy-saving tips for water heating.

Benefits of Lower Temperature

Water heater temperature from manufacturers is generally set to 140 degrees. The reason is to kill or neutralize germs and bacteria. Though, water temperature this hot can cause scalding, increase energy costs, and lend to corrosion of the water heater and pipes.

A hot water temperature of 120 to 122 degrees has been found effective at controlling germs and bacteria, and you can save as much as 10 percent on water-heating costs. Since water heating accounts for up to 20 percent of total household energy usage, you can keep more money in your wallet and prevent scalding with lower temperatures.

Turn Back the Thermostat Dial

Turning down the water heater temperature is a simple task. The thermostat for gas water heaters is on the gas valve. Turn it back toward the “low” indicator, wait a few hours, and test water temperature at the most distant faucet.

For electric water heaters, you’ll need to remove one or two panels on the bottom and top of the tank. Turn off the circuit breaker before you do this. Set both thermostat dials to the same setting. Wait a few hours and test the temperature with a thermometer at a faucet.

More Water Heater Savings

Water heaters offer more ways to save energy and keep more energy dollars in your pocket. Consider these tips:

  • Schedule water heater maintenance each year.
  • Use foam sleeves to insulate the inlet and outlet pipes to the water heater.
  • Continue on and insulate all hot water pipes in your home.
  • Drain one gallon of water from the drain bib every other month to reduce sediment and improve efficiency.
  • If you have an older system, wrap it with insulation designed for your model to reduce standby heat loss.

If you have questions about lowering water heater temperature, contact Roth Heating & Cooling today.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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Setting Your Thermostat: Fan On or Auto?

Setting Your Thermostat: Fan On or Auto?Whether you have a standard digital or manual thermostat, or a more advanced programmable or WiFi thermostat, you may have wondered about the fan setting. The “cool” and “heat” settings are obvious, but deciding upon the best fan settings — “on” and “auto” — takes a little more thought. Read on to learn how setting your thermostat fan to “on” or “auto” affects comfort, efficiency and indoor air quality.

Fan “On” or “Auto”: What’s the Difference?

The thermostat settings “cool” and “heat” control the cooling and heating systems and home temperature. The fan settings “on” and “auto” control the operation of the blower after the cooling and heating systems turn off.

Setting the thermostat fan mode to “on” will make the blower run continuously after the cooling or heating system has turned off. “Auto” fan mode turns the blower on and off in time with the cooling and heating systems.

Better Comfort and Efficiency

Running the fan continuously in the “on” setting doesn’t affect comfort very much, unless you just like to hear the HVAC system running. Using ceiling fans in occupied rooms to promote airflow is more practical and uses less energy, so if you want to keep energy bills in check, setting the thermostat fan mode to “auto” is best.

Additionally, by running the blower continuously after the cooling cycle ends, water condensation on the evaporator coil evaporates and returns back to the living spaces to increase indoor humidity.

Better Indoor Air Quality

Indoor air quality is an important element of home comfort and health. Many homeowners don’t realize that the indoor air quality of the average home is two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. Using the “on” setting for continuous airflow helps boost indoor air quality by running airflow through the furnace filter more times.

However, you may still face higher energy bills. The best solution for saving energy and maintaining healthful indoor air quality is a whole-house air purifier.

For more tips on setting your thermostat for the best results, contact Roth Heating & Cooling today. We’ve helped Portland area homeowners with HVAC solutions since 1976.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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Are You Using Your Programmable Thermostat Correctly? Guidelines to Follow

Are You Using Your Programmable Thermostat Correctly? Guidelines to FollowYour programmable thermostat is a proven energy saver, allowing you to cut back on heating and cooling costs when you’re away from home. But programmable thermostats don’t start saving you money until you start using them correctly. Here are the guidelines to follow to get the most out of yours.

  • Pick the thermostat that meets your scheduling needs. Some households have a regular weekday/weekend schedule, whereas others have different schedules every day of the week. Different models of thermostats allow for different levels of control.
  • Try to set temperatures back for large blocks of time. Eight hours or more a day is a good length for energy savings. This can cover a standard work day or a standard sleep schedule.
  • If your schedule changes for a day, don’t reprogram your thermostat. Use its override setting instead. It will automatically re-set at its next temperature set point and you won’t have to worry about remembering to re-program your usual schedule when the interruption is over.
  • Don’t crank the thermostat to warm or cool your home faster. A central air system can only deliver heating and cooling at a single rate unless you have a variable-speed fan or a two-stage furnace. Instead of bringing your home to a comfortable temperature faster, cranking the thermostat is more likely to make your air system overshoot the temperature you want.
  • Look for programmable thermostats that are wired directly into your home’s electrical system. If you do use a thermostat that’s battery powered, keep the batteries fresh and test them frequently.
  • If you use a zoned heating and cooling system in your home, use a separate thermostat to control each zone. Combining programmable thermostats with zoned air systems can maximize your energy savings.
  • Try to set your temperature back 5 to 15 degrees when you’re asleep or away from home.

If you’re curious about how a programmable thermostat can benefit your Portland home, contact Roth Heating & Cooling today!

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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Do You Know What Your Thermostat Fan Should Be Set To?

Do You Know What Your Thermostat Fan Should Be Set To?Normally, you set the thermostat to heat when it’s too cold and you’d want a little more heat within your rooms, and set it to cool especially in the summer when the interiors are a bit too hot for your comfort. And during the periods of the year when you need neither the heating nor the air conditioning, you simply set the thermostat to “off.” It’s that simple.

What about the thermostat fan? Typically, you can set the fan to “on” or “auto” but which is which and when should you apply which control?

The Thermostat Fan in an “On” State

Setting the thermostat fan “on” keeps it running all day, every day, regardless of the cooling or heating setting.

Advantages

  • Better distribution of air resulting in increased comfort.
  • Longer working life due to less stops and starts.
  • Filters the air in your home.

Disadvantage

  • Running the fan all day is very expensive.
  • Filters clog up quickly. Maintenance and frequent replacement can be quite expensive.
  • In colder seasons, a running fan leaves us with a “colder” feeling though in reality there is never a difference in room and space temperatures.

Setting the Thermostat Fan to “Auto”

In this setting, the fan will only turn on when it receives a signal from the furnace.

Advantages

  • You save energy because fans run for shorter times and at comparably lower speeds.
  • Filters last longer because of reduced usage.

Disadvantages

  • Air isn’t as evenly distributed as when the fan is in an On state.
  • Due to more starts and stops your fans wear out much faster.

Summary

Roth Heating and Cooling is a Portland, Oregon based heating and cooling company. Contact us today to learn more about our products and services or request a free quote and take advantage of our unbeatable prices.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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