We’re worried about this

In our area, both of us have a ton of options, there are over several grocery stores, a million shopping centers, plus a good deal of steakhouses. Both of us tend to compare pricing everywhere plus try to find the cheapest sites to stay in our budget. Luckily, both of us have been living here long enough to know the good sites plus the best bang for our buck. However, there is one corporation that both of us were unsure of until both of us encountered recent plumbing problems, where our toilets plus sinks seemed to run even when the handles were completely shut off. Our water bills were becoming more extravagant as both of us ignored the plumbing issue, so I decided it was time to do something about it. Many of our friends commanded  getting our plumbing system cleaned because it could be a build up causing our water to run! Since our lake house was rather new, both of us never had to call a plumbing supplier to do work before. So, when I started calling around to get quotes, I was shocked at how much it cost to simply get our plumbing units cleaned! The local plumbers were nearly impossible to get a hold of plus the brand name companies were ridiculously pricey! I was panicked that I would never get our plumbing fixed plus would have to pay those water bills forever! Luckily, my fiance talked to a woman she works with who knows of a great freelance plumber that would be able to repair our plan for a good price. Hopefully they never move away, otherwise both of us will be paying a fortune in plumbing services!

local plumbing 

The lavatory in my bakery

I am planning to open up a bakery in town.  A few months ago, I found the perfect building.  I got it for a great price.  The building needed to be a whole bunch of updates and work. I had to tear up the carpets and varnish the floors, replace walls and install new windows. I got just about everything done in mainly hardwood and stainless steel. I have vaulted ceilings with big hanging ceiling fans, and  a long wood counter for people to order and sit.  I spent a small fortune on  all the most sophisticated baking technology. I have purchased commercial stoves, coolers, blenders and mixing bowls. I even bought a couple of antique glass display cases to show off the treats I will bake. I got just about everything all set, when  I then realized I overlooked an important detail. I totally paid no attention to the bathroom.   I needed to make some improvements to the employee lavatory. I also needed to install an additional one for the customers.  Handling plumbing requirements was well beyond my capabilities so I called in a licensed plumber for this project. The plumber was not happy that I had waited so long to hire him.  It certainly would have been easier to set up all the pipes, drains, and fixtures when the walls were all torn down.  Now he wants to tear out  up my brand new flooring and walls. He wants to locate  the lavatory facility where I planned to a seating arrangement. Apparently it is a more efficient location for the toilet and pipes, but that’s not going to work for me.   

bathroom plumbing 

The bathroom in my bakery

I decided to open up a local bakery on Main Street.  I found the ideal building and I got it really cheap. The reason for this is that the building was in need  of a lot of renovations. I had to refinish the floors, put up walls and even replace windows. I got the whole building totally redone and outfitted in mainly hardwood. I have vaulted ceilings with modern hanging lights and a big wood counter for people to order and pay.  Next I invested in all the baking equipment I needed. I bought the stoves, toasters, blenders and mixers. I even invested in for a big glass display case for the treats I planned to make. I got just about everything completed and I then realized I neglected something major. I totally overlooked the bathroom.  I needed to make some major upgrades to the employee washroom. I also wanted to add a bathroom for the customers. Installing a plumbing system was well beyond my knowledge. I had to hire  a licensed plumber to take on  the project. The plumber was totally disgusted that I had not called him sooner, because it would have been easier to set up all the piping, septic and water when I was tearing out the walls. Now he is planning to rip up my brand new flooring. Also the plumber wants to locate the new bathroom right where I was going to have my coolers.   Apparently it is a superior location for the toilet, piping and septic tank to go in. I can’t have a bathroom for customers located behind the counter.  The plumber will need to make some adjustments.  

plumbing service 

I’m worried about heater safety

It is really fascinating to me to hear how much people don’t really know about their own houses and regular maintenance. Here, they live in these really fancy homes, with every appliance known to man at their fingertips. But, half the time, they don’t even know the proper maintenance or care for those appliances. If something breaks, they often will just replace it with a brand new one, rather than spend any time to find a repairman. It is such a wasted amount of money, but more so a waste of resources when they just toss out the old HVAC unit that can’t even be recycled. Recently, the heating and cooling industry has seen an increase in deaths among the elderly due to carbon monoxide. So many people don’t realize how dangerous these older gas heaters can be. They really do require more regular maintenance than your typical HVAC unit. These older gas heaters are very hard to detect problems or leaks until it is too late. The elderly do not have the awareness that we younger folks have when it comes to understanding our bodies and illness. They already have so many things that ail them, so a sick stomach, an added headache or even feeling lightheaded and dizzy is nothing surprising to them. The HVAC companies have decided to manufacture an entire educational campaign around carbon monoxide and gas heaters in hopes of bringing more awareness to save lives. But, wouldn’t it be nice if we could also figure out a way to refurbish these HVAC units the wealthy are disposing of and regift them to the elderly?


Medical problems

I am a new mom of the sweetest little baby boy! You would never know that he has some severe health issues. He will have to deal with these health challenges his entire life. He’s my only baby. It has been a huge awareness to realize how challenging parenting can be. The world makes it all look so easy, but they don’t talk about the complications that can occur. I am finding support groups of other moms who are going through what I am with my son. We have to change our entire lives around for this little boy. First off, we had to call in a local HVAC provider to do a total assessment of our house. Our son is very sensitive to heat and cold. His medications make either direction of temperature so much worse. It’s hard to understand, but if the heater is up too high, it could feel like pins being pushed into his skin. If the air conditioning is on too low, his entire little body can feel like an ice cube or frost bitten. This parenting of sick children’s support group has led me to all these new things I would need to get for my son. The HVAC company has installed a Zone Control App and a Smart App into my thermostat. The Zone Control will allow me to adjust the temperature differently in any room of the house. This will help normalize living for the rest of the family, while my son is comfortable in whatever room he is in. The Smart App allows me to monitor those temperatures from my phone. I love this more than anything. If he is having any kind of heating or cooling reaction, I can change the temperature immediately. It is all a blessing.

zone control HVAC 

Taking a look at the air conditioner

“Every time I try to get out, they drag me back in!” That’s a line from one of the Godfather movies. Although it was meant to be about a life of crime, I think it applies equally to the life of clowning. Here I am, trying to prepare for night school finals, and my family needs me to help them out for a big party. It’s at a nearby estate. They need a full group of clowns for a birthday party, and they are a few clowns short. The pay is really good for a day’s clowning, but I need to focus on my HVAC repair certification tests.

To make a long, boring story short and more interesting, I started this job, and it ended up helping me land an apprenticeship with a local HVAC contractor. He is the biggest heating and cooling contractor in the county, and has contracts with many businesses. I didn’t know this at the time. It was just a rich man’s country manor, I didn’t know he was the king of local HVAC installation. Later in the afternoon, I heard a strange clanking sound and left my juggling post to see that around back the exterior AC unit and air handler was working improperly. Since this was what I was trying to do with my life, I knelt down next to the air conditioner and inspected it until I found the problem. Imagine how weird it must have been for the owner to come around back and see a clown fixing his air conditioner!

air conditioner repair 

my air conditioner saved the day

You can get used to almost anything. Take, for example, the smell of a low tide. I grew up on the coast, right by the water’s edge. Every day, during low tide, there was the most pervasive, awful smell drifting up, out of the dry stretches of the sea bed. As I kid, I never noticed it; it had been there since I was a baby, so it was normal to me. But when I came back, after a few years, from a military tour, the stench was so raw I had to sit next to an air filter just to breathe!

Thankfully, I had brought a portable air conditioner with me, with a powerful air filtration system. I had bought the unit overseas, and took it with me everywhere I went; it was a real lifesaver. The air conditioner cooled me off, and made the air more breathable, especially in the Middle East, where sleeping conditions were unpleasant. HEPA air filters and built-in dehumidifier processed the air quietly and removed 99 percent of the foreign particles in it. It wasn’t enough to cool down the whole place, but this air filter HVAC was perfect for the inside of a tent. While I stayed at my old house, I turned it on every day during low tide.  

air filter 

We need some updates

Every year I try to do some new home improvement project or updating, I can’t afford to do all that my home needs at once so I have been spreading it out over the past few years since I bought my home. Last year I focused on the plumbing and this year I am finally tackling my HVAC system. I was really nervous about what the cost would be, I knew I couldn’t afford to get a brand new system installed, but I also knew I needed the ductwork cleaned and replaced and I was hoping to go from an electrical furnace to a gas powered one. It has always been my dream for gas lit fireplace in my room. The added benefit of a gas powered furnace is should the power go out from a storm or a blizzard, I would still be able to heat my home. Living up in the north those kinds of things happen often. The majority of homes have a fireplace or wood stove just for that reason, unfortunately my home was built without one. When the power goes out, so does my furnace, and spare space heaters won’t bring any relief either. So I reached out to the local HVAC companies to get an idea of what they could do and shop around for the most affordable price. I finally settled on this one HVAC team that really understood what I was looking for and quoted me for a fantastic price. In a week the HVAC team is all set to begin their installations. I can’t wait for my bedroom gas fireplace!

space heater 

Servicing my furnace

I decided I wanted to host Christmas for our family this year. I just got my own place and it was exciting to have the opportunity to invite everyone over for the holidays and show them my new life.  We had been returning to our parents house for years, my sister was apprehensive of the change of routine but I promised, as long as the family was together, Christmas will be perfect! My family was scheduled to stay over until the new years, my sister was coming a few days early to help me get everything prepared. When she arrived that evening I was in total panic, my furnace was apparently shot and not working. This was a disaster, I was crying that Christmas was ruined and the Megan was right, we should have all just gone home. There was no way I could call an HVAC team this time of year, they were all either fully booked or leaving for the holidays. As I was pulling out all my closeted space heaters and knitted and wool blankets, my sister got out the phone book and started calling the listed HVAC companies. Just like I expected many were either fully booked or out of town. By sheer luck she called one HVAC company and actually got a tech who answered! Thank goodness my sister was able to keep such a level headed during this time. She explained our furnace problems and the need for a timely repair. The HVAC tech was able to get in and service my furnace and by the time my parents and brother arrived, the radiators were creaking and furnace was firing. Christmas at my place was a hit!

space heater 

Cleaning my heating system

The only place that I have air conditioning in my home gym. I have a really neat addition onto my home. There is a door that opens to a long, patio like area. If I knocked down the glass windows, the area would be a patio for sure. Instead I left the door and windows and I made it a workout room. I can see the pretty outdoors through the glass but have temperature control when working out. In the Winter it is nice since the snow looks so pretty but I am toasty warm. The sun comes through the glass and naturally warms me. However I added a ductless heat pump to the room for some added heater use. I also really needed the ductless unit for cooling power. In the Summer that work out room gets toasty. The sun coming off the glass gets to be hot. I almost feel like a bug under a magnifying glass. So I crank up the AC with the ductless device. The air conditioning comes from a wall mounted unit and keeps me cold enough to work out for as long as I want. I like having a ductless AC unit since it takes up no space. Also not messing around with ductwork is super great. It is simple to clean, maintain and the temperature in my workout room never affects my whole home. I can use the air conditioning for working out and still have a nicely warm kitchen. It is great for comfort and money reasons. No use paying for cooling in rooms that I don’t want it.

elk HVAC