Month: May 2017

Key HVAC Tips For Optimal Efficiency

For many, the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system that keeps their house comfortable is out of sight and out of mind until there’s a problem. But there’s no need to wait for an expensive issue to ensure it’s working effectively. Follow these proactive tips that can help you enjoy efficient, uninterrupted performance.

Don’t Neglect Preventive Maintenance Just like with your vehicle, regularly scheduled maintenance on HVAC systems can help prevent problems and extend the life of your unit. To keep everything running smoothly, stay on track with a checklist of monthly and annual tasks. Start by diligently changing air filters at least every three months or more frequently if you have pets or severe allergies.

Keep an Eye on Landscaping Some homeowners may be tempted to camouflage outdoor HVAC equipment with shrubs, grass or flowers to increase a property’s curb appeal. If you’re not thoughtful about landscaping around the unit, you could be compromising its effectiveness. Regularly clear away debris, including leaves and grass clippings, from the top and sides to avoid damage, and maintain a 2-foot clearance around the machinery so airflow isn’t restricted.

Perform Preseason Inspections Before seasons change, give the system a once-over and pay attention to what you see, feel and hear. Excessive noise, minimal airflow and high humidity can all be problematic. A qualified expert can identify issues as well as remove debris from air conditioner coils, show you how to clean the condensate drain and more.

Ultimately, your HVAC system’s ability to perform throughout the year will largely depend on how well you maintain it. With a little time and effort, you can lower summer energy costs and keep your heating and cooling system in top shape.

 


Drone Safety and Liability Insurance

Are you one of the approximately 1.2 million who received a drone as a gift during the 2016 holiday season? Regardless of how much aviation experience you have, these small aircraft come with more risk than the average hobby. For example, did you know that when you operate one, you become liable in the event of personal injury or property damage? Follow the steps below to protect yourself before taking to the skies.

Step 1: Register Your Drone The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires drone owners to register unmanned aircraft systems weighing over 0.55 pounds with the government. Each aircraft must have the registration number displayed directly on the body. Civil noncompliance penalties can lead to fines of up to $27,500, while criminal penalty fees can go as high as $250,000 and three years in prison.

Step 2: Check Your Policy Next, hobbyists are encouraged to check the coverage associated with their homeowners or renters insurance policy. Specifically, review key sections including personal liability, medical coverage and property loss or damage. Also, keep in mind that a home policy won’t cover drones operated for commercial use, nor will a landlord’s insurance protect you if you’re a renter.

Step 3: Review Safety Precautions You can reduce your risk of personal injury or property damage by following common drone safety tips. Operate your drone at or below 400 feet, always keep it in your line of vision and avoid flying near emergencies, sporting events and large groups of people.

To keep drone flying fun and stress-free, make the right moves early on to protect yourself and your new toy.