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Program Your Thermostat in 4 Easy Steps

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Do the controls on your thermostat leave you feeling frustrated or confused? If so, you’re not alone! Whether you have a programmable model or a smart thermostat, setting a schedule isn’t always as clear as it should be—but it’s worth doing because it can help you save money on energy bills.  

Although some smart thermostats can “learn” and create a schedule by manually imputing a few days’ worths of temperature settings, most of them need you to program a schedule with your desired temperatures. This is usually done through a smartphone app rather than through the thermostat itself. Although it may feel like a daunting task, setting a schedule isn’t that difficult as long as you understand the programming process. 

How to Program Your Thermostat

  1. Know Your Thermostat’s Schedule

Before you start programming your thermostat, you’ll need to know what its scheduling allows. For example, does it allow you to schedule temperatures on a daily, weekly, and/or weekday and weekend basis?

If it lets you set a daily schedule, you can program a different schedule for each day of the week; a weekly schedule will allow you to set one schedule to use seven days a week. A weekday/weekend schedule will allow you to set one schedule for the weekdays and a separate one for the weekends. Nearly all programmable thermostats let you set daily schedules; many of them also offer weekday/weekend schedules. 

After you’ve figured out which type of scheduling your thermostat uses, make a note of the following for each day of the week:

  • When you and your family typically wake up 
  • When you leave home
  • When you return home
  • When you go to bed

This list will make it much easier to figure out scheduling when you’re ready to start programming your thermostat!

  1. Select Your Temperature Settings
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Next, you’ll want to jot down your preferred temperatures for different times of the day—generally, you’ll find these temperature settings listed as “home,” “away,” and “sleep” in your thermostat. To save the most money on heating and cooling costs, follow these guidelines from the Department of Energy:

  • Set your “away” and “sleep” temperatures at 4 to 6 degrees different from your “home” temperature; make sure to set this higher during the summer and lower in the winter. 
  • During the summer, set your air conditioning as high as is comfortable for when you’re home and higher when you’re gone. 
  • During the winter, set your “home” temperature to 68° F.
  • Make sure to update your schedule as the seasons change. 
  1. Create Your Schedule in the Thermostat

Once you have your family’s schedule and your preferred temperatures, you can start programming your thermostat. If you’re using a daily schedule, you’ll need to do the following process seven times; for weekly schedules, you’ll only need to do it once. For weekday and weekday schedules, you’ll need to do it two to three times, depending on your model. 

Start by checking your owner’s manual to find out how to access the scheduling feature. If you don’t have the manual anymore, you can often find a copy online by searching for the manufacturer and model number. 

  1. Select a day of the week and put in the time when you want the first period of the day to start and the temperature you’d like it to be during that period. 
  2. Set the next period and temperature; repeat until you’ve set a schedule for the entire day. Note: some models will let you copy the schedule you set and apply it to the following days. 

If you have a smart thermostat, it should have a scheduler builder feature in the app that will walk you through the steps. 

  1. Start the Schedule

After you’ve set up the schedule, you’ll need to activate it. Regardless of the type of thermostat you have, there should be a button to enable the schedule, or it will say “hold” on the display. Push the hold button, and your new schedule should be active. 

Setting a schedule for your thermostat according to the Department of Energy’s guidelines will keep you comfortable year-round and help you save up to 10% on your energy bills, if you select set points that are not too extreme.  

Turn your thermostat to 80 degrees in the summer when you are away at work, then set it to 72 when you get home. The effect of a high (or very low temp in the winter) is that every item in your living space; furniture, walls, floors and ceils will reach that temperature by the time you get home. This means everything in your living space will have to reach the desired “at home” temperature before you feel the effects.   

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To achieve this temperature your system will run constantly for about 4 hours or more depending upon the efficiency of the system.  Setting the thermostat closer to the 72 desired when you are at home….74/76 degrees, then it will run less overall, because of run time during the day. With the rising cost of energy, it can help you save a significant amount of money in the long run. 

PECO is Here to Help

Hopefully, this has made you feel more confident about programming your thermostat! However, if you can’t find the owner’s manual to get into the schedule settings, or you’re still having trouble getting your schedule set up, we’re always here to help! We can also assist you with troubleshooting issues with your thermostat, installing a new thermostat, and much more. Contact PECO Heating & Cooling today at 864-639-2424 or schedule a service appointment online!

Can a Heat Pump Save You Money?

Lennox Heat Pump

Have you been thinking about upgrading your heating and cooling system? If so, you should consider having an air source heat pump installed. Heat pumps act as both a heater and air conditioning unit—and they can help you save money without sacrificing your comfort!

How Do Air Source Heat Pumps Work?

Most heating systems rely on burning fuel or converting electricity to generate heat. In contrast, heat pumps don’t generate heat—they move existing heat from the outdoors into your home. This allows them to provide more heat energy than the electrical energy heat pumps need to operate. 

Pecos Heat Pump System Buying Guide 3

This works the same as a traditional air conditioner in cooling mode. Air source heat pumps consist of a compressor and two copper or aluminum coils. One of the coils is installed outdoors and the second one is indoors. In the wintertime, the outdoor coil uses liquid refrigerant to convert the absorbed heat from the air into a gas. The gas refrigerant releases the heat through the indoor coil and then reverts back to a liquid. 

You may be wondering how the heat pump can extract heat from the outside air when it’s cold outside. All outside air contains some heat until the temperatures drop to absolute zero (-459.67° F). 

In warm temperatures, the heat pump works in reverse to provide cooling; it essentially moves heat from the indoor air outside. 

How Can an Air Source Heat Pump Save Me Money?

Save Money with Heat Pump PECO

In the past, air source heat pumps were mainly used in moderate climates, but recent technological developments have made them an excellent option for even colder climates. 

A new 16-17 SEER heat pump can reduce energy consumption by an average of 20-30% with a single stage split system. The high-efficiency variable speed heat pumps also do a better job of dehumidifying than single stage central air conditioning or heat pump systems, so you can enjoy lower cooling costs in the summer and better comfort. 

Like a traditional HVAC, heat pumps should be serviced twice a year. If you can only get LP gas for a furnace system you can save money with a high efficiency heat pump by eliminating the need for LP Gas fuel delivery which is more money per BTU.  Natural gas furnaces are still the most efficient at lower temperatures for the dollars spent.   The best of both worlds is a dual fuel system – heat pump with natural gas furnace.  The heat pump is more efficient in heating down to 50 degrees, then the furnace will take over.

Yet another cost-saving benefit is that heat pumps can protect against inflation and the rising cost of energy. According to a report from January this year:

  • Households with natural gas heating systems can expect to spend 30% more this winter than they did in 2021 which is still lower than using a moderately efficient heat pump system
  • Households that heat their homes using electricity are expected to spend approximately 6% more this year than the previous year.
  • Households that heat their homes using propane or heating oil can expect to spend up to 54% and 43% more this year, respectively and these fuels are already more money per BTU. 

As the most effective electric heating system on the market, heat pumps are a great long-term investment. With a variable speed, variable capacity system you can get a return on your investment.

Ready to Install a Heat Pump? 

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It’s clear heat pumps have several advantages over traditional HVAC systems:

  • Heating and cooling capability in a single unit
  • Very efficient – comes in a variety of SEER efficiencies
  • Runs on electricity; lower energy costs

If you’re ready to switch to a heat pump system, PECO Heating & Cooling is here to help! We offer installations, maintenance, and repairs for heat pumps, heat pump split systems and dual fuel heat pump systems with gas furnaces. We’ll evaluate your space and heating needs and make recommendations on the best unit for your home. Although we primarily work with Lennox products, we offer service for all heat pump brands. 

To find out if a heat pump is the right choice for your home, call PECO today at (864) 639-2424 or contact us online.

Considering a Vent-Free Fireplace? Here’s What You Should Know

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Is there anything cozier than enjoying a warm, crackling fire on a cold winter day? If you’ve been considering installing a new fireplace or updating an existing one, you’ll find that most fireplaces these days are fueled by gas, which is great news for those who dread cleaning up messy soot and ashes. You’ll also discover that you have an option between a traditional vented fireplace or a “ventless” or vent-free gas fireplace. Although these fireplaces come with many benefits, there are also some downsides. To help you decide whether a vent-free fireplace is right for you, here are the most important things you should know. 

What is a Vent-Free Fireplace?

A vent-free fireplace is essentially what it sounds like: a fireplace that’s designed to burn without the need for a chimney or other types of ventilation. Traditional gas fireplaces, like wood-burning models, use an exhaust flue to remove harmful fumes from the home and bring combustion air into the sealed firebox. In contrast, a vent-free fireplace doesn’t use a flue—instead, it relies on the available oxygen in the room to provide combustion. 

Vent-free gas fireplaces have been around for about 40 years, but as their popularity has grown, they’ve seen more criticism in terms of their impact on indoor air quality. This has led to the state of California banning them completely and numerous municipalities putting restrictions on them. Although they’re permitted in the majority of the US, every county has different codes, so what’s permitted in one city may not apply to the next city over.

The Pros of Vent-Free Fireplaces

One of the biggest benefits of a vent-free fireplace is that they offer better efficiency compared to a vented fireplace. Without the need for a vent, 99% of the heat generated by a ventless fireplace stays inside the room, essentially allowing you to achieve complete combustion and optimal heat retention in your home. Complete combustion refers to achieving the perfect ratio of oxygen to fuel, which produces relatively harmless byproducts like heat, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and nitrogen. And since a venting system isn’t needed, all the heat created from combustion stays inside the home, rather than being directed outdoors. 

Another benefit of vent-free fireplaces is that they’re low-cost and easy to install. Since they don’t require ventilation, you also have more flexibility in where they can be installed. This is particularly convenient for homes with a layout that would make a traditional gas or wood-burning fireplace challenging. Without the need to install or modify venting, there are also fewer materials needed—and of course, you’ll enjoy less mess than a traditional wood-burning fireplace! With their improved energy efficiency and lower installation costs, the savings on overall costs can be substantial over time. Not to mention, ventless fireplaces have a very modern, attractive appearance that adds a touch of sophistication to any room.

Both vent and ventless fireplaces can have an optional blower motor added.  This blower motor circulates the air through concealed chamber and blows it out into the room.  This adds additional heat to your space and when you couple it with a wireless thermostat/remote control this will keep the blower on until the temperature is reached where the remote is located.   This is a great way to control the fireplace flames as well from the comfort of your favorite couch.

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The Cons of Vent-Free Fireplaces

Now, let’s take a look at some of the cons. 

One of the benefits of a vent-free fireplace is complete combustion, but what if there’s an issue with the fireplace that causes incomplete combustion? Incomplete combustion occurs when there’s either too little or too much oxygen in the room’s air. When there’s not enough oxygen, the normal byproduct of combustion (carbon dioxide or CO2) becomes carbon monoxide (CO). If there’s too much oxygen, the byproduct becomes nitrogen oxide (NOx) instead of nitrogen (N).

Carbon monoxide is a very dangerous and highly toxic combustible gas. It’s odorless, colorless, and tasteless, making it undetectable without the use of a carbon monoxide detector. Often, people don’t realize they’ve been exposed until they become ill—and even then, they may mistake the symptoms (like severe headaches, dizziness, fatigue, and nausea) for the flu. Although the effects of carbon monoxide can vary based on the amount of CO, an individual is exposed to and the duration of exposure, it can lead to cell suffocation and death. 

Nitrogen oxide has a similar effect, but it’s not necessarily as dangerous as CO. NOx is an irritant gas that increases inflammation in the respiratory system. Small doses or being exposed for short periods of time can cause mild, temporary problems like coughing, while prolonged or high exposure can cause significant lung damage. Over time, it may lead to decreased lung function, increased risk of respiratory conditions, and increased allergen response. In extreme cases, NOx can also cause death. 

Why Choose an ANSI-Certified Ventless Fireplace?

Both CO and NOx byproducts carry valid and serious concerns, which is why vent-free fireplaces have seen bans and restrictions. However, if you’re considering a ventless fireplace for your home, choosing an ANSI-certified system will reduce the risks. 

An ANSI-certified vent-free fireplace includes an important safety feature: the oxygen depletion sensor (ODS). This sensor acts as a safeguard if the oxygen levels drop below a safe level. It’s designed to shut off the fuel if the oxygen level in the room drops from 20% (normal for room air) to below 18% or less. The reduction in oxygen triggers a thermocouple to close the gas valve, which will starve the the fireplace of gas and make it shut off automatically.  

In addition, all ANSI-certified fireplaces are rigorously tested to ensure they produce exceptionally low levels of these harmful byproducts. While the arguments against vent-free fireplaces are valid, ANSI-certified fireplaces are a safe way to enjoy the many benefits of a ventless system. To keep your system safe and functioning properly, you should also make sure to keep up with the manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations. 

Making the Choice for Your Home

When making the choice for your home, take some time to weigh the pros and cons of a vent-free fireplace. Although ventless systems do have some additional risks associated with them, choosing an ANSI-certified fireplace (and following the manufacturer’s installation and maintenance instructions) will significantly reduce these risks. Keep in mind, also, that even vented systems aren’t entirely without risk! Having a high-quality carbon monoxide detector in your home will also provide additional peace of mind. If you’d like more information on vent-free fireplaces or you’d like to discuss an installation, PECO is happy to help! We want you to feel completely confident you’ve made the right choice for your home. Contact us today at (864) 639-2424 or send us a message through our online form.

Program a Thermostat

Wall Thermostat

Are you trying to program a thermostat? Sometimes it seems like you need a college degree just to work one! Don’t freeze or boil in your own home – make sure it is comfortable by properly programming the thermostat.

Old school thermostats can be a little confusing, but once you understand how they work, you can easily set a thermostat to make sure you have a consistently comfortable temperature in your home. This is a great resource to learn how to set some thermostats, though it is best to go to the manufacturer’s website for a specific manual for your thermostat.

Newer Thermostats

While newer thermostats are programmable so that you can efficiently manage your energy usage while keeping the house pleasantly heated/cooled – for example, setting the thermostat to drop to 67° overnight in the winter and warm to 70° during the day – not all older thermostats have this feature. If you are interested in upgrading to a newer thermostat, or even a smart thermostat like Lennox M30 Smart Thermostat, Ecobee Smart Thermostat, or Google Nest, PECO can quickly and easily complete the task.

The best way to program a thermostat that is a new model is by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Instructions came with the thermostat in the packaging and can be found directly on the manufacturer’s website. Smart thermostats can also be linked to your phone and accessed via an app, allowing you to control your HVAC system even when you’re not home. You can turn off the system to conserve energy when no one is home or turn on the system before arriving home to ensure the house is comfortable when you get there. If you have a smart thermostat, visit the manufacturer’s website directly for information on programming and tips.

Leave it to the Professionals

It is important to have a professional initially install these thermostats as they are designed for different types of equipment and it is easy to damage expensive electrical components in your system or choose the incorrect equipment on the initial set up. Any of these issues will cause the thermostat to work incorrectly.

Of course, whatever type of thermostat you have, PECO can help! We are experienced in the installation, repair, and maintenance of various types of heating and cooling systems. If you want to program a thermostat, upgrade to a smart thermostat, or have any questions about your HVAC, call us at (864)639-2424. We are a family-owned business based in Central, South Carolina, and serving the surrounding areas including Sunset, Six Mile, Clemson, Seneca, Salem, and beyond.

Top Reasons to Make the Switch to Natural Gas

Have you been considering installing natural gas lines at your residence? Natural gas is versatile, adds lasting value to your home, and is very economical. It’s estimated that using natural gas helps the consumers save an average of $874 on energy bills each year compared to those who use electricity.

Switch To Natural Gas

Natural gas is also more eco-friendly and energy-efficient than other types of energy sources. As natural gas is transported through a series of pipelines, 92% of it is delivered and utilized as energy. In contrast, only about 32% of power from electricity is delivered to consumers and able to be utilized as energy. Natural gas also cuts carbon emissions by nearly half compared to other types of energy sources. Here are a few other reasons you may want to consider natural gas for your home:

  1. Convenient and reliable – You’ll never run out of fuel with natural gas. It’s delivered directly to your home through underground pipelines and is uninterrupted by storms or power outages. Unlike wood-burning furnaces, there’s no mess from ashes or tars. Gas furnaces don’t need to be cleaned and require limited maintenance. You’ll also have the convenience of instant energy to warm your house, cook, or take hot showers.

  2. Versatile – Natural gas is used for more than just heating your home. It heats water, powers appliances like stoves, dryers, and fireplaces. It can also be used outdoors for barbecues, lighting or warming pools or hot tubs.

  3. Save money – With its high efficiency, natural gas can save you money, especially if you switch over to gas-powered appliances. In most areas, natural gas costs less than other types of energy – often up to half.

  4. Ready for the Future – Once your home is set up for natural gas, it’s easy to upgrade your appliances or add additional gas-powered appliances later on.

  5. Safety – natural gas is safer and easier to store than other types of fossil fuels.

  6. Plentiful – the United States has an abundant supply of natural gas, which helps decrease our reliance on foreign energy supplies.

  7. Environmentally friendly – While natural gas isn’t as clean as wind or solar, it’s the cleanest fossil fuel energy source available. Natural gas produces a 1/3 less carbon dioxide than coal and almost half less than oil. It emits little to no sulfur. Not only does it burn cleaner than other fossil fuels, but it’s also less disruptive to the environment. Coal mining can overtake entire hillsides, creating erosion, deforestation, and pollution. With natural gas, the environmental impact is minimal, and the majority of the land it’s extracted from stays intact. 

  8. Increased Resale Value – On average, homes with existing natural gas sell at a 6% higher price than homes utilizing other energy sources. According to the National Association of Home Builders, 72% of homebuyers looking to buy a home within the next five years say they want their home to run on natural gas. Not only can adding natural gas increase the interest and sale price of your home should you decide to sell it in the future, but appliance rebates may be able to offset the cost of adding major new appliances.

Are you ready to make the switch to natural gas? Give your friendly home service heroes at PECO a call!  We’re happy to answer any questions you have and help you decide whether natural gas is right for your home. We can also expertly install your new gas line, along with water heaters or gas appliances. Contact us today at 864-639-2424 or request an appointment online.  

Choosing the Most Energy Efficient Heating System

Energy Efficient Heating System

Heating your home in winter is one of your most expensive annual energy costs. If you’re thinking of purchasing a new furnace, it’s good to carefully look at your options to make a choice that saves resources and energy over the long haul.

We suggest you ask yourself five important questions before purchasing:

How cold is cold?

The farther north you are and the colder it gets and the more a high-efficiency system can reduce cost over time. If you live in the southern areas at low altitudes, perhaps smaller zoned systems will be enough even on the coldest days.

Forced or radiant? 

Radiant heating—warm water that flows through tubing under or within floors—is highly efficient and cozy way to keep your toes warm. There are no cold areas because heat rises from the entire floor. But the cost can be quite high, especially if you are trying install it in an existing building.

How much room do you have for your unit?

A larger furnace may seem like a good idea until you consider the space available to install it. Outdoor units, such as heat pumps require enough yard for the unit and clearances. It’s best to consult with us before purchasing equipment that may not fit your space.

Which fuel options are available? 

What energy sources do you have access to? Natural gas, heating oil, electricity, or propane? Availability and prices of these vary widely. It’s good to consider which energy source will be plentiful and stable over the life of the unit.

What energy-efficiency best fits your needs?

Furnaces are sold at varying levels of efficiency. An 80% efficient furnace is open combustion, meaning it sucks in air from the surrounding area. A 95% heater can’t do that—it uses seals combustion and requires air from the outside. That means in addition to the increased cost of the more efficient model, you may also need to create a pathway for the air to enter the unit. Based on your needs, it may take a long time for the higher-efficiency model to pay for itself. In fact, it might never do so.

At PECO Heating and Cooling, we’ll give you straight answers about all of the furnaces we offer. We’re also available 24/7 to make sure your furnace or HVAC system is running right. With our Planned Maintenance Agreement you can make sure your system remains in excellent working order. Twice each year, we’ll come to your house and perform maintenance that will give you the reliability you can count on. We also provide a wide range of home maintenance and repairs, including home inspection repairs, plumbing, and electrical services. Visit us online or call 864-639-2424 to schedule your appointment to stay warm all winter long!   

How to Decide Whether to Replace or Repair Your HVAC System

How to Decide Whether to Replace or Repair Your HVAC System

Your HVAC system is malfunctioning; how do you know whether it’s worth repairing or if it should be replaced altogether? While we can certainly give recommendations when we take a look at your HVAC system, here are a few guidelines you can keep in mind to determine which choice is right for you.

It’s Worth the Cost of Repairs if:

  • If your system is less than 10 years old. The National Association of Home Builders estimates that the typical HVAC system is expected to last about 10-15 years. If your unit is less than 10 years old does or does not have manufacturer’s parts warranty, it’s most likely more cost-efficient to have it repaired. Over 10 years old? You’ll most likely want to have it replaced to save on repeated service calls.
  • Your ductwork is the issue. Many times, issues with your HVAC system can be caused by problems with your ducts. It’s estimated that about 10-30% of your HVAC system’s air leaks out before it reaches the interior of your home, so having your ducts checked for any leaks or gaps can save you money on energy costs and help your system run more efficiently.
  • You’ve had regular maintenance performed on your HVAC unit. If you’ve kept up with regular maintenance on your HVAC system, this can reduce demand service calls and save on your power bill monthly. Regularly cleaning the unit of dust, pollen, animal hair, dirt, and debris should ensure that your unit doesn’t fail before it’s time. We recommend having your HVAC system serviced twice a year; spring and fall are a great time to get your system ready for your heavier heating and cooling needs during the summer and winter months.

It’s Worth the Cost of Replacing if:

  • Your unit is over 10 – 15 years old. As mentioned above, at this age, your unit is nearing the end of its lifespan, and that means the chances of it having repeated need for repairs goes up. As the components in your HVAC begin to age and malfunction, it’s generally cheaper to simply replace the entire unit than to pay for repairs every season.
  • You notice higher energy bills when you use your HVAC. As HVAC units age, they become less energy efficient and must work harder to keep your home heated and cooled. If you notice that your energy bills have been rising, it may be worth replacing your older unit entirely.
  • Your HVAC system isn’t keeping your home comfortable. If your system isn’t able to keep up with the demands of your home and you’re continuously noticing that rooms aren’t as comfortable as they should be, it may be time to replace your HVAC unit.

Are you still having trouble deciding whether you need a repair or replacement? You can do a quick calculation to see what would be more cost-effective. Contact us for an estimate for HVAC repair, and then multiply that number by the age of your system in years. Then, check that price against the price of a new unit. If it’s more than the cost of a new unit, then it’s best to replace it. If it’s less, and the system is under 10 years old, it’s probably best to repair it. If you’re still unsure, our skilled technicians can provide expert advice on whether your unit should be replaced versus repaired. Give us a call and we’ll come out and take a look!

Get Smart About Thermostats!

Smart thermostats are great for so many reasons; they add convenience, comfort, and energy efficiency to any home. If you’ve considered adding one to your household, you may have discovered there are a lot of options available. How do you choose the right one? We’ve compiled a list of four of our favorite thermostats that we personally install in our clients’ homes. They have amazing functionality, look attractive, and offer all the features you’d hope to see in a smart thermostat.

Lennox iComfort E30

The E30 is our top choice for smart thermostats. It’s innovatively designed, offers great features, and makes it easy to save money on energy bills without having to sacrifice your comfort. The E30 has a “Feels Like” setting, which takes the temperature and humidity into account, allowing you to have your home feel exactly how you like it. It’s a great option for those with asthma or seasonal allergies; it has the ability to monitor the air quality and allergens in your zip code and will turn on the system’s fan to keep your home’s air clean. If you have a whole-home humidifier, the E30 can be set-up to work with it to keep your home’s air moisture level optimal. You can control your home’s temperature from anywhere with a smartphone; it’s also compatible with Amazon Alexa, Amazon Echo, or Echo Dot

In terms of energy efficiency, the E30 offers a number of innovative features. It features a Smart Away mode that works with your smartphone’s location to adjust your home’s temperature based on whether or not you’re at home, and Schedule IQ technology that adjusts temperature settings to match changes in your routine. A convenient One-Touch away mode allows you to override your regular programming schedule with a single touch, setting back your heating and cooling set points to help you save energy; it’s Smooth Setback Recovery setting allows you to automatically adjust your heating and cooling start time to keep your house at the exact temperature you like. Additionally, the E30 provides handy performance reports that show you the history of your system’s operation and performance.

Honeywell Lyric T6

The Lyric is a great economical option for those who like the fancy features of more expensive thermostats but want to save on costs. While it’s a fraction of the price of others, it offers many of the same features – and it works with everything. The Lyric offers complete connectivity with your mobile device, allowing you to control it from anywhere; multiple smartphones can be linked, giving your whole family the ability for remote temperature control.

With 7-day flexible scheduling, you can program it to work with your schedule throughout the week; if your schedule changes, it’s easy to adjust the setting remotely using the app. The Lyric also features geofencing capabilities and smart alerts that let you know when you need your filter changed. It can be integrated with Amazon Alexa, Google Home, IFTTT, and Apple HomeKit. It also comes in a Z-Wave version for control and automation of other smart devices within your home.

Emerson Sensi Touch

The Sensi Touch is a little simpler than the previous thermostats, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing! It allows you to easily control your home temperature from anywhere using wifi, and it works with Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKits. It also offers convenient geofencing. Named the “Best Overall” smart thermometer of 2018, it has an attractive HD color touchscreen display with backlighting that makes it easy to use in low light. You can set up smart alerts to let you know when extreme temperature is on the way, or when humidity changes are detected, and it conveniently receives automatic software updates, so you’ll always have access to the latest features as they’re released. The Sensi also sends you usage reports, allowing you to monitor your heating and cooling run times, as well as receive energy saving tips, product news and more.

Nest Learning Thermostat

The Nest Learning Thermostat is aptly named; this thermostat learns and adapts to your schedule – in only one week! The Nest makes it easy to save energy based on your lifestyle and needs. Nest also has voice control capability with Alexa and Google Assistant and can be set up to track your smartphone location, adjusting the temperature of your home to fit your schedule. An independent study showed The Nest was able to save people an average of 10% on heating bills and 15% on cooling bills, effectively paying for itself in under two years. Our company has experienced a high failure rate with these thermostats however, the Lennox or Honeywell is the best option. They work with everything and the Honeywell even has a Z-Wave version.

Get Smart About Thermostats!

Now that you know about our favorite smart thermostats, the only question is, which one is right for you? If you’re interested in installing a new smart thermostat or would like to discuss which one would fit your needs best, give us a call! We’re happy to go over the different features in more detail and find the perfect thermostat for you.

Call Us 864.639.2424

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10 Tips to Save On Winter Heating

Looking to save on winter heating?

We’re here to help keep your energy bills lower!


1.       Energy Audits

Often a free service, your local electric company is happy to help assess your needs and check in to see what is causing your bill to spike. They’ll take into consideration your lifestyle, as well as your patterns of energy usage. A representative will go through your home to inspect the structure, survey your appliances and measure the insulation. Once this is done, the company will make (and help to implement) suggestions for more efficient energy consumption. An example would be to change your light bulbs to more energy efficient ones.

2.       Air Leaks

It is important to check for any air leaks within your household. It is allowing the warm air to escape, making your heating system work harder to keep your house at the desired temperature, and ultimately increasing your energy bill. Seal the openings of the leaks using silicone or latex caulk.  By sealing air leaks, your energy bill could drop as much as 30 percent.

3.       Thermostat

Setting your thermostat to 75 degrees in the winter is comfortable, but costly. The lower the setting you can handle, the more money you will save. Setting the thermostat to 62 overnight will save you even more on your energy bill. And, if you’ll be gone for a few days, turn the temperature down to 55, which is the lowest setting you can use without the pipes freezing.

4.       Insulation

Insulation is the most important component to keeping a home warm in the. It’s important to make sure you have the proper level of insulation throughout your house in order to stay warm and save the most money possible.

5.       Fireplaces

Fireplaces are excellent sources of heat, but a fireplace damper left open when not in use will cause your heated air to escape and allow cold air to come inside.

6.       Air Vents

Many people choose to block these with furniture as they can be an eye sore. However, in doing so you’re causing the furnace to work much harder. To keep your airflow moving efficiently, check to make sure none of your vents are blocked.

7.       Ceiling Fans

If you have a ceiling fan, change the direction of the blades to push air downward. This will actually help heat the room more evenly. The more you know!

8.       Drapes

Did you know that full drapes, like those made of a wool-cotton blend help to insulate your rooms from cold air coming through the windows? This adds another “layer” of warmth without increasing your energy bill.

9.       Space Heaters

We understand these help warm up a small space. However, they’re a huge fire hazard so we do not recommend using them.

10.   Rugs

Did you know that area rugs are not just a design element, but they insulate the floor as well? They trap cool air underneath. A great way to style a room and add warmth.

At PECO Air, our expertise, promptness, and customer service make us the best choice for heating, cooling, and electrical needs. Whether you need a diagnostic, repairs, or installation, you can rely on our experienced team. We stand by our work and offer a 1-year parts and labor warranty on all repairs. Contact us today to set up an appointment at (864)-639-2424.

6 Reasons to Pick Heating and Air Conditioning Companies Near You

Your furnace, heat pump or AC is in desperate need of repair and you don’t want to throw a dart at your computer screen to pick an HVAC company – not only because it’ll ruin your computer, but also because you don’t want to go with just anyone. You want a company that’s reliable and trustworthy, that can provide quality service without overcharging you. Those are excellent reasons to choose one of the top local heating and air conditioning companies near you. Need more reasons? Here you go.

6 Reasons to Pick Heating and Air Conditioning Companies Near You

1.)    Convenience

Going local is, above all, convenient. They’re close by, which means you don’t have to wait for hours on end for them to drive out from their facility. You can reach them by phone or email, of course, but it’s equally easy to visit them at their office if necessary.

2.)    Quality of Service

The service is simply better when you go local. Small businesses work hard to get and keep your business, which means hard workers and excellent service. Customer support is usually top-notch and you can rely on them for emergency repairs and quick response times. Small business owners are usually local residents themselves and are invested in their community.

3.)    Licensed and Responsible

Every quality independent contracting firm worth their salt will be licensed and ensure all their workers are licensed. You should be able to ask them for verification and check up on it to make sure everything’s above-board. They want to provide good service to their customers and protect their own business, so they make sure to cross every t and dot every i.

4.)    Honest and Trustworthy

When you work with someone who’s a member of your local community, they’re more likely to treat you like a friend and neighbor, because you are. Independent service centers rely on word of mouth and recommendations to earn more business, so you can bet they’re going to be reliable.

5.)    Individualized Service

At a Big Box Store, you can often feel like you’re just a number. There’s not much room for specialized service or individual attention, both because they deal with so many customers and because they don’t have to make it a priority because there are always more people. When you go with independent heating and air conditioning companies nearby, you’re more likely to feel like you’re getting the attention you deserve.

6.)    Community Investment

Local businesses support local workers, local economy, and local community. They tend to give back to their community via investment, volunteer work, or other methods. It’s a great way to support your city!

These are our top six reasons to pick HVAC companies near you for all your service and repair needs. Do you have anything to add? Let us know!