The HVAC vents, in many homes, have fins that can adjust using a sliding switch. The fins can direct airflow at a set angle, however, if you push the switch completely to one side, you can close off the vent.

You might think this is a great way to save energy. After all, if you close off the vents in an unused room, the hot or cold air won’t enter the room. Closing the vent does not save money. In fact, it can increase your utility bill and cost you more money in the long run, due to repairs.


A Counterproductive Strategy

It’s easy to understand the hypothesis. If hot or cold air is not escaping the vents in a room or two, it should use less energy to produce the air needed to heat or cool the remaining rooms. However, an HVAC system is not designed to operate that way.

An HVAC system is like a human respiratory system. For it to work, efficiently, there must be proper airflow. Many systems are calibrated so that it can change the airflow. This can choke out some of the energy efficiency and put a strain on the HVAC system components.

Close vents that increase the pressure in the ductwork and the pressure increases all the way back up to your HVAC system. This forces the system to work harder. This may cause the same issues as when you have a dirty air filter. The air conditioner or furnace will use more energy to make the same amount of treated air.

This will increase your monthly bill. It also puts stress on motors, fans, or other equipment, reduces maintenance intervals and leads to frequent repairs.

One other problem created by excessive amounts of duct pressure is that it causes duct leaks. These weak spots in ductwork can turn into open gaps in the ducts. This allows the treated air to escape and this forces your systems to work harder.


Get in The Zone

The concepts behind keeping vents closed in an unused room can be put to work as long as you have the correct HVAC system. Some systems, including the “zone HVAC system”, offer you unprecedented control over the rooms that will receive the treated air.

This sophisticated interface is not the same as a standard thermostat. With a zone system, you can assign a different temperature to each zone. A zone can be a section of your house or just a single room.

This can come in handy when you want to save energy. You can treat a room to a lower or higher temperature, without closing the vent or shutting off the airflow into the room completely.

There’s no reason for an unused or unoccupied room to maintain the same comfort level as the rest of your house. However, the lack of an HVAC system can lead to summer humidity damage, frozen winter pipes, and mold.

If you want to learn more about controlling HVAC zones and what it takes to upgrade your home’s system. For more information, contact one of your local HVAC contractors in Philadelphia.


insulation-homeAlthough you may not know this already, HVAC systems take up the largest percentage of your entire household’s energy consumption. While investing in an energy efficient heating and ventilation seem would be a wise decision, undetected air leaks can still cause the bills to be high. Although an upgrade would be a welcome idea, experts recommend looking into your home’s insulation to ensure there aren’t any air leaks at all. Having this checked out can contribute to huge energy savings and lower heating and cooling bills.

Although there may be different types of home insulation to choose from, spray foam insulation is considerably the best especially when it comes to sealing air leaks. How the insulation is applied or installed can also make a difference in your home’s energy efficiency.

Many people however find it hard to choose between the DIY version of installation and the professional way. While applying the DIY version may be easy and pocket-friendly, it would be much wiser to have a professional handle the installations for you. Spray foam insulation can be applied in the basement, attic, and any other area in the house.

Hiring a certified contractor for the insulation installation can help achieve the best results in your home. This however doesn’t mean you cannot do it yourself and make significant improvements on the same. With a proper understanding of where to apply, how to do it, and identifying leak prone areas is the key to success in insulation installations.
Diagnosing and identifying air leaks in winter is comparatively much easier than in summer or fall. Once you have identified the leaking points, you can then seal the breezy spots with spray foam. Sealing of one or two air leaks in winter can make a huge difference in the home’s heating efficiency and energy bills.


If detecting hidden leaks is proving to be a challenge, you can then use some of the low-tech spectrum draft detectors to help you out. Many of these detectors are available in hardware stores hence easy to find. You may however have to turn the HVAC off to be able to detect draft within the house. Alternatively, you could use a lit candle to detect air leakage in the house as well.

A thermal imaging radar is another more advanced detector that can help identify leaking areas with ease. This device allows you to see the coldest and hottest parts of the house, hence giving you an idea of where to look for leaks. Most experts and certified contractors use this technology to find air leakages in homes.

You can also approach this differently by replacing aging fiberglass insulation entirely and having new spray foam insulation installed. If handled expertly, your house will be more energy efficient and even more comfortable to live in. Spray foam insulation provides a watertight and airtight seal hence ideal for most homes.
As mentioned earlier, the only way to achieve best results from insulation installation is by having a well trained and certified professional handle the installations. Going for an expert who has been in business for some time would, therefore, be a wise decision. The contractor should be able to conduct a thorough home audit then recommend the best cause of action for an energy efficient home.


The Basics of Losing Body Fat

The Fundamentals of Dropping Body Fat

Losing weight and getting into shape are only two perks of a healthier life, the benefits of which are too numerous to mention. Nevertheless, the quest to better health is no easy task and without an in depth understanding of the way the body stores and releases fat, many desperate efforts can yield minimal results.

For this reason many valiant resolutions end in frustration.

This article aims to illustrate some of the basics of how the individual can interface with their body to bring about a healthy transformation in the most expedient way, thus preventing wasted time efforts and feelings of discouragement.
It Begins with Food Intake

As you may have guessed, the food you eat is every bit as important as your regular exercise. As a matter of fact, it may be even more important. You will not have the proper fuel to burn, if you have not first committed to a healthy diet.

Some people think, “Wait a sec, I have PLENTY of stored fat to burn… I don’t need to worry about what I eat.” This is incorrect, the body may only hold onto its fat stores more greedily, if strenuous exercise is not balanced out with regular nutrition.

Nutrition is a very personal business, and even though the experts can offer plenty of helpful advice it is an individual choice what goes down the hatch. By gaining an insight into what the body need to work, think, play and exercise, the individual is able to affect dietary changes that can result in higher energy levels, greater physical output and even better sleep.

A healthy diet will consist of just the right amounts of each of the following macronutrients:

  • Carbs — Without carbs the muscles of the body will lack the energy to participate in regular exercise. Fine tune this, only consume the amounts you need for the exercise program you commit to, excess is the danger here.
  • Fats — Fats are important for brain function and hormone productions. The most important sources of fats are nuts, fatty fish and olive oils.
  • Proteins — The building blocks of muscle must be replenished regularly and completely if muscle form is to improve in line with physical exercise. When muscles are met with new challenges and more difficult exertion, they are torn down and rebuilt stronger. One gram of protein for each pound of body weight is a rule of thumb. It is not advisable to eat excessive quantities of protein as whatever is not used to repair muscle is just burned as fuel, or worse, stored as fat.

It is important to eat a full variety of proteins from nuts, meats, seafood, and much more, this will keep the body well stocked with essential amino acids.

Fiber and Water — it is essential to keep the body clean and hygienic by consuming large quantities of water and fibers. Water is the ultimate sports drink — our ancestors used it to hunt wooly mammoths— and fibers will keep the digestive tract squeaky clean for better nutrient absorption.

There are many diets out there and all have their unique advantages and a plethora of health hazards. As a rule of thumb, try to balance a low amount of Carbs with high amounts Fiber and Protein, and no less than 2 liters of water every day. Take time to consider what you like to eat and make healthier adjustments, this way the new diet will be easy to continue into the foreseeable future. Once you have found a diet routine you live and love, move on to finding an exercise program you feel the same way about.


The Best Tips To Help You Build Muscle

Are you tired of being overweight or average looking? Do you want to build muscle and lose fat? If you answered yes to any of those questions, then keep on reading. The truth is, anyone can have a muscular and powerful physique that is aesthetically pleasing, but you have to put in the work. So, in this article, we will be covering the most effective tips to help you achieve your muscle building goals.

The first thing you need to do is eat properly to build muscle. This means that you need to eat at least one gram of protein per pound of your body weight. So, if you currently weigh 185 lbs, then you should be eating at least 185 grams of protein every day in order to build muscle.The best foods to eat that contain a lot of protein are lean meats. This includes chicken breast, turkey, fish, beef etc. If you are unable to eat your protein requirements in real food, then you can supplement with various protein powders available at your local bodybuilding or fitness store.

In addition to eating enough protein to build muscle, you will also have to eat clean foods so that you lose fat and give your body the nutrition it needs. This means that you should be eating clean carbohydrates such as brown rice, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, quinoa etc. You should also eat lots of vegetables, nuts, legumes and seeds. You should avoid eating processed foods such as snacks, cakes, cookies, cornflakes, frozen meals etc. Once you have your diet in order, you then need to exercise and start lifting weights in order to build muscle. Lifting weights is the most effective way to build muscle and sculpt an aesthetic physique. However, you can also build muscle through other types of training such as crossfit, calisthenics, body weight exercises etc.

Now, in order for your weight training routine to be effective, you need to do progressive weight training. This means that you increase the amount of weight that you lift every week or few weeks. You need to increase the resistance against your muscle so that it is forced to grow, otherwise your physique will remain the same. Some of the most important exercises to focus on include squats, deadlifts, bench press, military press, rows, lunges etc. Other important exercises include bicep curls, tricep extensions, skullcrushers, pull ups, chin ups, hanging leg raises etc.

In order to be successful with building muscle, you should follow a tested and proven lifting program that you can easily get from a trainer or online sources such as Hardgainer Nation. They have a great MI40 review which is a program by IFBB Pro Bodybuilder Ben Pakulski. He teaches the importance of focused tension during workouts and also provides a meal plan. Once you combine heavy training and a clean diet, you will definitely build muscle while losing excess body fat. If you have excess body fat, you should add a few cardio sessions to your workout routine in order to burn more fat.

In closing, we have just covered some of the best tips to help you build muscle in a matter of months. Once you put in the work, you will definitely get the results you desire.