At Your Service Plumbing, Heating & Air Blog: Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

How to Lower Your Cooling Bills This Summer

Monday, April 24th, 2017

Air-conditioning-efficiencySummer is on its way, and that means regular use of your air conditioner to keep high temperatures at bay. With proper care and maintenance, your air conditioner should perform reliably, but you’re still going to be paying more when you run it every day. The good news is that you can take steps to lower your cooling bills this summer. Some steps are easy and can be done without much preparation. Indeed, you may be practicing them already: raising the thermostat a few degrees, for example, and dressing in lightweight clothes throughout the house.

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3 Tips for Your Thermostat

Monday, November 2nd, 2015

The thermostat is one of the most important components of your heating and air conditioning system, allowing you to have complete control over the temperature – and thus the comfort levels – in your home. That’s especially important as fall turns slowly to winter here in Salt Lake City, UT and we’ll need our heaters and furnaces to keep us warm. Thermostats are used so often that many people end up taking them for granted, and often perpetrate a number of myths in the process. Here’s 3 key tips for your thermostat that can save you money and prevent some of those myths from taking hold.

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Lupercalia: The Origin of St. Valentine’s Day

Saturday, February 14th, 2015

Many people may think of Valentine’s Day as a holiday essentially created by card and gift companies, but the truth is that the holiday has long-standing roots going back to the Roman Empire. The name “Lupercalia” has its origins in the word “lupus”, which means wolf, and the reason for this is that according to Roman pagan religion, the she-wolf Lupa nursed the two orphaned infants Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome.

The Festival

The Festival of Lupercalia spanned two days each February, from February 13th to 15th. The festival was about fertility and was led by Luperci priests, known as “brothers of the wolf”. The festival was serious with intention (fertility) but was executed as quite a romp for both the priests and citizens of Rome. The process was this: two male goats and a dog were sacrificed at the beginning of the festival by the priests; two young Luperci were then anointed with the blood from the animals, and the hides of the animals were cut into straps. As food and drink flowed, the male priests would run around the city wearing nothing but thongs made from the animal skins, and they also carried a strap from one of the sacrificed animals. The strap was used to strike the palms of Roman women waiting for the priests in the city, as it was believed that being hit with the strap could help with infertility issues and a safe, healthy labor for women who were pregnant.

The Transition to St. Valentine’s Day

The Christian influence of the holiday came around the 5th century. The Roman Empire was still strong, but Christianity was rapidly taking hold throughout the world. It is believed that to try and remove the paganism from the holiday, the deaths of two men, supposedly both named Valentine, were added into the mix. During the 3rd and 4th centuries, a law created by Claudius II forbade young men eligible for military service to marry, because Rome wanted a strong army. The two men named Valentine were priests, and married young couples in secret. Both were found out and executed on February 14th, although in separate years. The Church made Valentine a saint (they chose one), and Lupercalia became St. Valentine’s Day.

Here’s wishing you and your loved ones a Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Problems That Can Develop with Your Furnace’s Burner

Friday, December 12th, 2014

The burner is arguably the most important part of a furnace, responsible for actually providing all of the heat used to warm the air in your home. The number of burners may vary from system to system, but they all fill the same role. Though the construction of a burner is fairly simple, it is still susceptible to a number of issues that can affect its ability to heat your home. Let’s take a look at some of those problems.

Carbon Buildup

Most home furnaces use natural gas as a fuel source. As the burners combust the natural gas, they produce a number of combustion byproducts as waste material. These byproducts, which include carbon and several kinds of toxic gas, are vented through the exhaust flue and out of the house. Some of the carbon produced, however, often sticks to the burner itself. This isn’t a problem at first, but the more carbon builds up, the more it will impede the burner’s operation. Eventually, the carbon buildup can cause the burner to fire more slowly, produce a weaker flame, or even fail altogether. It is important to have your burners checked if you think that your furnace might be having trouble producing enough heat.

Other Issues

Carbon buildup is the biggest contributor of burner issues, but it isn’t the only one. Dust often coats all parts of the furnace after a while, including the burners. Corrosion from moisture can begin to degrade the burner assembly. It is even possible for a blockage to develop in the gas line, preventing the burners from receiving adequate fuel. The best that you can do, as a homeowner, is to make sure that the external sections of the burner assembly are clean and free of debris. Be sure to shut off the gas valve before cleaning the burners. If you aren’t comfortable cleaning your burner assembly, call a professional to do it for you.

If your furnace is giving you trouble, call At Your Service Plumbing, Heating & Air. We offer professional heating repairs throughout the entire Salt Lake City area.

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Longer Days Ahead: Why Winter Solstice Is a Reason to Celebrate

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

Holiday greetings from all of us at At Your Service Plumbing, Heating & Air!

December is a time of celebrations across the globe, despite the cold weather that affects much of the countries in the Northern Hemisphere. In fact, the cold weather is one of the reasons that it is so important for people to embrace celebrations of light, color, food, and warm drinks—what better way to cheer up during a time of short days and low temperatures?

There is another reason to feel joy at the end of December, regardless of your religion or culture: an astronomical event called winter solstice.

Four astronomical markers divide the seasons on planet Earth: two solstices and two equinoxes. Equinox (a combination of the Latin words for “equal” and for “night”) is the point in Earth’s orbit when its axis is parallel to the Sun. Solstice (from the Latin words for “sun” and “to stand still”) is the point in orbit where the Earth’s axial tilt points toward the Sun. During the equinoxes, which occur at the start of spring (vernal equinox) and fall (autumnal equinox), the periods of day and night are the same length. During the solstices, which occur at the start of summer (June solstice) and winter (winter solstice), either day or night is at its longest period. June solstice is the longest day of the year; winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year.

Occurring on the 20th or the 21st of the month (this year it falls on the 21st), winter solstice marks the official beginning of winter, but also the point at which the days start to grow longer once more. The sun, which has dropped lower in the sky since the June solstice (June 20-21) and reaches its lowest point above the horizon on noon on winter solstice, once again begins to rise.

From the earliest human prehistory, people have recognized the winter solstice as an important event in their lives. When winter survival was difficult for early human societies, the sight of the sun beginning to rise in the sky once more was a symbol of hope and a reason to celebrate.

(All of the above applies to the Northern Hemisphere of Earth. The equinoxes and solstices flip in the Southern Hemisphere. For example, in Australia, Christmas is a summer holiday.)

However you commemorate and observe this time of year, we hope you and your family have a joyful and safe season!

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Check Out Our Blog for the Latest in HVAC Technology

Saturday, October 5th, 2013

Be sure to bookmark the At Your Service blog for updates on the latest advances in HVAC and Plumbing technology.

We’ll feature money saving promotions here as well.

Call At Your Service for all your Heating, Air Conditioning, Indoor Air Quality, Plumbing, Water Heaters and Water Treatment needs.

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Welcome to Our New Website

Saturday, October 5th, 2013

iMarket Solutions has launched At Your Service’s new custom website. To learn more about how iMarket Solutions can expand your presence on the web visit: www.imarketsolutions.com

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