Feeling like an electricity generator? We’ve all been there. It seems like everything you touch results in a ZAP! Even the gentle touch of a loved one can cause that quick, sharp shock. Static electricity is a symptom of a bigger problem: the air in your house is just too dry. 

Static electricity is frustrating, sure. But dry air isn’t just an annoyance. 

The Problem with Dry Air

The air in your home has two main properties: temperature and humidity. Ideally, the humidity level in your house should be around 45%. 

Most of us are familiar with the problems caused by too much moisture. Besides the dampness, you’d feel, too much humidity can be breeding grounds for bacteria and mold. 

We don’t often hear about the problems caused by air that is too dry. Dry air causes noticeable changes, like static electricity. You might also notice that your skin gets crackly or scaly, or your lips stay dry and chapped. 

But there’s also the changes internal functions to be aware of, like mucous membranes (yes, we’re talking the stuff inside your nose). When mucus is too dry, it loses its natural barrier against inflation of the respiratory tract. As a result, you can be more prone to sickness. 

How do I know if the air in my house is too dry? 

There are a variety of ways to monitor the moisture level of the air inside your home to ensure it is not too dry. Any of the following methods would work: 

1 – Sensing – If your home is at the right humidity level, you won’t have any of the problems associated with dry air. For example, no one in your home will suffer from extra-dry skin, chapped lips, or bloody noses. Also, you won’t be subjected to static electricity at every doorknob. 

2 – Changes in your Home – Dry air will pull moisture from your house’s structure and furnishings. So, warped and creaky wood is an indicator of air that’s too dry. You can also check for chipped and flaking paint. 

3 – Monitoring – Many thermostats these days come with a humidity sensor built-in. This way, you can know for sure the moisture content of the air in your house. But if your thermostat doesn’t have this feature, not to worry. You can purchase temperature and humidity monitors very inexpensively. 

What solutions are there for dry air? 

Although there are many short-term solutions for dry air, we encourage you to consider a permanent solution for your house. Installing a humidifier alongside the rest of your HVAC equipment will ensure that your humidity levels never drop below the acceptable range. This way, you can avoid the inconvenience of air with low humidity levels. 

And yes – there are many cheap space humidifiers available. The problem with these local humidifiers is that you have to remember to turn them on, power them off, and then to add water. And, a small humidifier will only help the air nearby – not all of the air inside your house. 

A whole-home humidifier is installed with your heating and cooling equipment. This way, all of the air in your home will get treated. And best of all, you’ll never have to worry about turning it on or off, or remembering to refill any water reservoirs. A whole-home humidifier is connected to your water line. 

In short, a whole-home humidifier can help preserve comfort and healthier air in every space.

Dry Air Solutions from Brody Pennell

Don’t let dry air make you uncomfortable or susceptible to illness. Take control with a whole-home humidifier and enjoy the air all year long. Contact us today for a no-obligation consultation on adding a humidifier to your HVAC system.

When it comes to your health, indoor humidity levels is probably not the first thing that comes to mind. But, relative humidity can actually play a big role in how you’re feeling day to day. And since we spend over 90% of our time indoors, it’s definitely something worth paying attention to.

Here in Los Angeles, it’s more likely that you’re feeling dry. Despite the proximity to the coast, we don’t experience the extreme humidity and afternoon showers like our friends in Florida. Still, you could encounter either high or low humidity levels in your home. 

While indoor humidity levels may seem inconsequential, the impact it can have on your health can range from minimal and annoying to severe and life-altering.

Humidity and Asthma, Allergies and Immunodeficiencies in Los Angeles

If you or a loved one suffers from allergies or immunodeficiencies, especially respiratory conditions like Asthma, humidity will have an even greater impact. 

Indoor air is notoriously polluted (containing up to 5x the pollutants as outdoor air) due to poor circulation. Humidity can either foster these pollutants or exacerbate your symptoms. 

For some people, humidity swings cause flare-ups in symptoms. Those that are more susceptible and sensitive to humidity will experience a host of health issues, even in their own homes. 

Luckily, there are solutions that work to improve the quality of indoor air. Outfitting your LA abode with IAQ products that work to purify the stuffy air can address the negative effects of humidity and common allergens.

Understanding Humidity

Humidity is expressed as the amount of water vapor in the air. 

Humidity can be measured as absolute humidity (the total amount of water vapor in the air regardless of temperature) and relative humidity (the percentage of humidity in the air compared to how much the given temperature could support). Most commonly, meteorologists and HVAC professionals will cite humidity in terms of relative humidity. 

As air warms and cools, the moisture in the air also heats up or cools down. That creates another element of discomfort to contend with. 

Consider the difference between a sauna and a steam room. While they are both very hot in terms of air temperature, the amount of moisture creates a different feeling for the body. You might be very uncomfortable in the dry environment of a sauna, or feel suffocated in the 100% humidity of the steam room. The difference isn’t the temperature – it’s the humidity. 

The ideal humidity range is between 40-50%. Not only do most people feel most comfortable at this range, it’s the ideal level for health purposes too. Read on to discover the concerns and solutions with moisture levels that are too high, as well as too low. 

High Humidity in Los Angeles Homes

Most people in LA won’t ever deal with high humidity. But, there are some special cases where humidity could become a problem in your home. When we experience those rare rainy days, moisture can make its way into your home. High indoor humidity can make a rainy day even worse! Here’s why:

Why High Humidity is Bad

High humidity in your home will not only lead to physical discomfort, but it could also impact your health and wellbeing. High humidity can cause these symptoms:

  • Overt mucus production 
  • Moisture in lungs – coughing, trouble breathing 
  • Dehydration
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle cramps

The risks of mold exposure

High humidity is the ideal environment for mold, mildew, and fungus to spawn. Many household items as well as building materials support the development of mold. While some reactions to mold exposure can be mild, others can be severe. 

The longer mold is left to fester in a home, the larger it will grow. This creates a greater likelihood of residents experiencing adverse health effects including all of the aforementioned symptoms of high-humidity, as well as fatigue, shortness of breath, fever, the potential for a fungal infection.

Solutions for High Humidity Homes

Even if symptoms are manageable, no exposure to mold is healthy to endure for any extended period. It’s best to take preventative measures by outfitting your home with these products designed to combat high-humidity:

Low Humidity in your LA Home

A more common curse for LA residents to contend with is low humidity. During droughts, Los Angeles can experience significantly low levels of humidity. While this skirts the issues presented by high humidity, moderate humidity (40-50%) is more ideal than low levels that fall below 40%. 

Why Low Humidity is Bad

Beyond a few instances of static shock, you will also experience further discomfort if your home is too dry. The symptoms of low humidity closely reflect allergy or asthma symptoms. These symptoms include:

  • Dryness of the throat and eyes
  • Dry, unproductive cough
  • Itchy skin and cracking
  • Bloody noses 
  • Raspy breathing
  • Brittle hair and nails

Solutions for Low Humidity Homes

Addressing low humidity indoors is a simple approach. The first step is to produce humidity through a whole home humidifier. This ensures that every inch of your home is accounted for. 

Sure, there are mini humidifiers you can buy at local stores. But to get the same results as a built-in humidification system, you’d need one of those small units for every 100 square feet of your home. Plus, you’d need to keep the trays full of water and remember to turn them on and off.

A whole-home humidifier is a set-it-and-forget-it system.These units will keep your indoors at the ideal humidity levels all year round. We’ve had many customers call us back after installation to remark what a difference it has made within just a few HOURS! 

Start at home to limit humidity’s impact on your health

We spend a significant amount of time at home, even if just for a good night’s sleep. If you or someone in your family is especially susceptible to humidity, you unfortunately can’t snap your fingers and uproot your family to move to an area with ideal humidity. However, you can utilize HVAC products, IAQ products in particular, to combat humidity within your own home. 

At Brody Pennell, we know the Los Angeles climate better than anyone. Let us recommend a unique solution to calibrate the humidity level in your home. From self-correcting HVAC systems to IAQ products that purify and restore your air, we provide solutions for every threat to your air quality. Together, we’ll take your air quality from top-of-mind to peace-of-mind. Give us a call at (310) 896-4911 or schedule online to start breathing easier!

Fall is in full swing and that means the holiday season is underway. With modern families spread from coast to coast, it’s more important than ever to create a warm and hospitable environment for traveling guests. That’s why we’ve made this checklist to help you get your home ready for the holidays!

Holidays should be spent having fun and making memories with the people closest to you. However, if you find yourself underprepared to entertain holiday guests, it can quickly turn the holidays from special to stressful.

Whether it’s just for day-of festivities or you’re housing aunts, uncles, siblings, cousins, and surprise plus ones. Run through this pre-holiday visitor checklist to get your home ready for the holidays!

1. Prep Your Plumbing System

Anyone who’s ever hosted Thanksgiving dinner at their house knows the toll that it can place on the home’s plumbing system. From the mountain of dishes left in the kitchen sink to the increased use of the home’s bathrooms. Calling out a plumber to inspect and, if needed, fortify your pipes can save you from any disastrous holiday plumbing problems. 

2. CO Monitor Check

There’s a good likelihood that holiday cooking is going to lead to increased use of your stovetop. If you have a gas range, this enhances the probability of an accidental CO leak from one of your stove’s burners. With even more loved ones under your roof, checking your carbon monoxide monitor is an especially wise task to address before your guests arrive.

3. Have Essentials Available for Guests

You don’t have to fold your tissues into origami swans for your closest friends and family. But, you will want to make guests aware of where to find certain essentials. Help your guests feel at home by placing things like extra towels, pillows, blankets, Tylenol, allergy medications, hand lotion and band-aids in your guests’ quarters.

4. Examine Your Exterior

As homes are filled to the brim with friends and relatives, it’s not uncommon for a holiday party to spill over into the yard. While you don’t have guests to accommodate, it can be easy to adopt an out of sight, out of mind mentality for your outdoor maintenance. 

Keep your friends and family safe while they play yard games, football or enjoy a fall fire by clearing up your yard and securing railings and steps.

5. Light the Way for Guests

Traveling can be unpredictable, so guests can arrive at all hours of the day – or night! This makes something as simple as changing a light bulb a vital task to help guests acclimate to your home. 

From pavers and porch lights to hall and attic lights. Wherever guests are staying should be well lit to help them comfortably navigate your home during their stay.

6. Heater Tuneup

We know Southern California falls are fairly temperate. Still, it’s important to call in an HVAC technician to ensure your heat system is ready for the winter ahead. If your furnace has any issues, you’ll want to find out before your house is set to entertain ALL of your relatives. A heater tuneup should be a mandatory task to get your home ready for the holdays!

7. Pad Up Insulation

Insulation is one of the smartest investments homeowners can make to improve home comfort AND energy efficiency (source). Once you’ve shored up your heat system with seasonal maintenance, the next best step is to more efficiently retain the heat your system produces. Avoiding heat (and therefore energy) leaks will prevent cold spots. Plus, it will keep your utility bills down as you heat up your home.

8. Consider Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality

Ensuring your home is comfortable for your family and guests may require some attention to your indoor air quality. With the weather getting colder outside, there may be an increase in time spent inside. This, along with a higher number of visitors, can cause a spike in air pollutants. Guests traveling from other regions may also be more sensitive to local allergens. 

One way to address the air quality of your home is an air purifier. Air purifiers can be integrated within your central air system or a stand-alone as an individual unit. Running an air purifier throughout colder months can help counteract the buildup of indoor air pollution.

You can check off a number of items on this list with a quick call to the LA HVAC experts at Brody Pennell. Schedule your furnace maintenance appointment today! Ask your technicians about other ways to improve your home comfort ahead of the herd of holiday guests your home is set to support this year.

If you get sticker shock each month when you see your energy bill, you may be looking for ways to save energy around the house. Here’s a common question our customers ask: “Should I set back the temperature when I leave my house?” After all, most people turn off lights and water when they aren’t using them. Why cool an empty house?

Air conditioning is one of the appliances that uses the most energy. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, air conditioning makes up 17% of the energy used in homes in mixed-dry climates like Los Angeles. So, it’s no surprise you might be thinking about your AC when you think about saving energy.

By the way, what is setback? Setback is a term used to describe the act of changing your thermostat from the normal, comfortable temperature set-point to another temperature in order to save money on HVAC operation. The setback temperature might not feel comfortable to you if you’re sitting in a space that is cooled to the setback temperature, but the idea is that you won’t be there while setback temperature is in operation!

Is it worth it to change your thermostat when you leave the house?

Before deciding whether or not to set back the temperature, there are a few things to consider.

First, think about how long you’ll be away. Will it be a few hours, or several days? Next, is how much to set back the temperature by. Setbacks are not created equally – setting back your thermostat by 1 or 2 degrees is different than setting it back by 5 or more degrees. Finally, is humidity a problem in your house? For LA customers closer to the coast, battling humidity in your home may be more of an obstacle than for those in the city.

Leaving the house for a couple of hours

It may be tempting to leave your AC running when you leave for work or head off to run errands. It’s one more thing to think about as you scramble to get out the door. Plus, it’s nice to come home to a nice, cool house.

But if you’re serious about saving energy, it’s important to adjust your thermostat while you’re away.

The Department of Energy indicates you can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling if you set back the temperature while you are away for 8 hours. Turning the temperature back 7°-10°F is your best bet. The ideal summertime temperature for setback is 78°F.

The truth is that you won’t get much benefit from setting back the temperature by only one or two degrees – but something is better than nothing. We always recommend our customers set back the temperature, even when they only leave for four hours.

If remembering to set back the temperature is a problem for you, consider investing in a programmable thermostat. When you use a programmable thermostat, you can set up your thermostat to set back automatically. And, you can start cooling your home before you arrive home by programming your thermostat to automatically turn on sooner.

When you’re away for several days

If you’ve read this far then you already know: it is absolutely beneficial to set back the temperature if you’ll be away from your home for several days. If your home is empty for weeks on end you may be tempted to turn off your AC completely.

But, there are a few more considerations when you’ll be gone for a long period of time. The most important consideration is humidity. Air conditioners help remove humidity from the air in your home. So, it’s important to keep your AC running even if the home is empty.

If you’re leaving for travel, set back your temperature setpoint by at least 10 degrees. But, don’t turn it off completely!

Another benefit to temperature set back

Setting back the temperature is an easy way to save energy. But, you’ll get even more bang from your buck when you turn up the temperature.

Because your air conditioner won’t be working so hard, you’ll be adding years of life to your AC system. When you run your AC at full-blast even when you’re not home, it is more likely to break down sooner. So, all the more reason to set back the temperature.

Now that the holidays are here, many homeowners have started thinking a little more about what they might ask Santa for in order to make their home a little more comfortable. Luckily, we know just what you need – HVAC accessories!

Though your HVAC system does a good job of keeping your home environment safe, healthy, and comfortable, sometimes you need a little extra help, depending on your home comfort needs and lifestyle. For example, families with allergy sufferers might need to go the extra mile to make sure their family members can breathe easy when allergies start to hit hard by purchasing an indoor air quality product.

Below, we’ll guide you through the world of HVAC accessories, so that you can make a more informed decision about which might be right for you:

Electronic Air Cleaners

Most standard air filters only trap about 7% of home pollutants like dust, dirt, tobacco smoke, mold, bacteria, and other allergens. This leaves 93% of these irritants traveling around your home left to damage your furnishings and aggravate allergies, asthma, and other breathing issues. Indoor air quality products like an air purifier or electronic air cleaner help remedy these issues.

Electronic air cleaners act as an extra line of defense against these pesky pollutants by cleaning the air in your home and removing these allergens before they impact your home comfort or health. Carrier’s patented  Captures and Kills™ technology traps and kills bacteria, viruses, mold, and other irritants, re-purifying the circulated air as many as 8 times an hour.

Who Needs an Air Purifier?

Though we can all stand to breathe air that’s a little cleaner, not every home needs an air purifier. This IAQ product is ideal for homes with family members who suffer from asthma, allergies, or other respiratory issues. It is also the perfect accessory for homes that have family members with weakened immune systems such as elderly folks or infants.

Smart Thermostats

Thermostats are a must-have for any homeowner. This device allows you to control the temperature of your living space, ensuring that the whole family is happy, healthy, and comfortable all year round. However, not all thermostats are created equal! While some homes have a simple electronic thermostat, other homeowners opt for a smarter option that gives them better control over their home comfort.

Smart thermostats provide enable you to reach optimal home comfort by giving you more control over the temperature and comfort settings within your home. With a Wi-Fi thermostat, you can adjust the temperature and other settings on your thermostat from any device with an Internet connection. That means you’ll no longer have to come home to a cold house on a chilly winter night or worry about leaving the AC blasting when you leave for work this summer.

Who Needs a Smart Thermostat?

Smart thermostats are the ideal HVAC accessory for homeowners who prioritize comfort and convenience above all else. They are also a great gift idea for families that are into the latest and greatest gadgets or want to work toward transitioning to smart home technology. If you’re in the market for a new smart thermostat, be sure to check out our selection of Carrier smart thermostats.

UV Sterilizers

Did you know that your indoor air is often dirtier than the air outside? (Yes, even in LA!) UV air sterilizers create a cleaner, healthier, and safer home environment by eliminating mold, bacteria, and germs from your home and the air circulating through your home. These devices are located in the duct work upstream of your HVAC system where they work to kill a high percentage of airborne bacteria and germs as they pass through the UV light.

A single UV lamp model kills up to 70% of the airborne bacteria that passes through your HVAC system. While the coil irradiation model kills up to 99.9% of surface mold on your central AC components and cooling coil. This not only creates a cleaner and healthier home environment for you and your family, but it also helps protect and improve the performance of your heating and cooling equipment.

Who Needs UV Sterilizers?

UV sterilizers are ideal for those who suffer from respiratory issues, allergies, and asthma. It can also be great for those who find themselves getting frequent cold and flu headaches, runny nose, itchy and watery eyes, sore throat, and fatigue.

Need help deciding which HVAC accessories are right for your home? The home comfort experts at Brody Pennell are standing by to answer your questions. After asking you a few questions about your home environment, comfort needs, and HVAC system, we’ll pair you with the right HVAC accessories to meet your needs.

Call us today to improve your home comfort levels: (310)896-4911.

If you’ve been putting off buying a new HVAC unit or maintaining your current unit because you just can’t afford it, fall is the right time to finally buy a new heating and cooling systems. Many companies offer cash back rebates and incentives to encourage you to purchase a new system or keep your current unit as efficient as possible.

If you want to get the best deal on a brand new HVAC system, you’ve come to the right place. Brody Pennell is currently offering a variety of current specials and rebates that are perfect for smart shoppers who want to purchase a new heating and cooling system while taking the opportunity to save big. Below are some details on our latest and greatest HVAC rebates and deals.

How Do HVAC Rebates Work?

You may be wondering how exactly HVAC rebates work. A rebate is a cashback offer that you are entitled to after purchasing a certain HVAC unit. Rebates might be offered by a manufacturer as an incentive to buy their brand, or they may be offered by the government or a utility company to incentivize you to buy a more energy efficient unit. Rebates are subject to certain terms and conditions, so it’s important to get more information about certain HVAC rebates to understand which rebates you are eligible for.

Los Angeles HVAC Rebates

Right now, Brody Pennell is helping our customers save big with two special rebates that are currently available for Los Angeles homeowners who purchase a new HVAC unit:

  • The Carrier Cool Cash rebate is available until November with the eligible purchase of a Carrier unit. These rebates can save you up to $1,650 depending on the unit you buy. Carrier HVAC rebates are easy to submit online, so you can get the cash back as fast as possible.
  • The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is also offering rebates for LADWP customers that help offset some of the costs of keeping their AC units in top shape. This includes up to $1,200 instant rebate with the purchase of an ENERGY STAR high-efficiency HVAC system. LADWP’s AC Optimization Program also provides a free central air conditioner tune-up through Brody Pennell and a free, smart learning thermostat. Restrictions apply. Visit https://www.ladwpactuneup.com/ for more details.

What are my HVAC financing options?

Even with these rebates and incentives, it can be hard to come up with thousands of dollars to buy a new unit. Instead, HVAC financing options can help you buy a new unit while prices are low, allowing you to pay a low monthly payment over time instead of trying to come up with the funds all at once.

At Brody Pennell Heating and Air Conditioning, we have financing options to help you secure the unit you want at the best possible price. We have interest free options to allow you enough time to pay for the unit without paying a ton of interest or fees, only the purchase price of the unit. Our flexible financing is designed to help customers who may not qualify to get financed in another way.

If you’re ready to get a high-quality HVAC unit at a low price, contact us today. We can inform you about all of the current HVAC system rebates and specials to help you save as much as possible.

If you’re shopping for a new AC unit, one of the big questions you’ll have to answer is whether or not you want to purchase a high-efficiency unit. An energy efficient HVAC unit can be more expensive than a conventional unit, and you may wonder if the extra expense is worth it.

While you will get the satisfaction of knowing you are reducing your carbon footprint, going green can mean putting out more money up front in order to save in the long run. Energy efficiency can save you money, but it can take some time to see these returns in reduced utility costs. Below, we’ll cover the different considerations you’ll need to make when deciding if an energy efficient HVAC system is right for you.

How Do Energy Efficient HVAC Units Work?

High-efficiency units use the same general setup as traditional air conditioners, but they usually operate on a high-efficiency motor. This kind of motor takes less power to cool the air and release it into the home. An energy efficient unit like the Carrier Infinity system has a higher SEER rating, which means that it uses less energy than a conventional system to cool the same amount of air.

The average Carrier Infinity has a SEER rating between 16 and 21, making them ultra-efficient. This results in a lower utility bill because you pay the power company for the amount of wattage you use. In fact, switching to an energy efficient unit can save you up to fifty percent on your home heating and cooling costs because of the reduced power consumption.

Smart Controls Make It Easier to Stay Energy Efficient

One way to make sure you reduce your energy consumption as much as possible is to use a smart or programmable thermostat with your high-efficiency HVAC system. Smart controls for your HVAC system can help you stay on top of your utility usage at all times.

On a typical day, you may notice that it is too cold inside your home and make a mental note to turn it down, but get distracted or busy. Before you know it, hours have passed with the cold air blowing for no good reason. Smart controls allow you to change the temperature, even if you aren’t at home. So if you leave the house and forget to turn the thermostat up, and you’re going to be gone all day, you don’t have to worry about the HVAC running for no reason. You can simply adjust it through the website or app.  Or you can program the thermostat ahead of time to raise the temperature at home when you know no one will be home, like when you are at work and the kids are at school.

Energy-Efficient HVAC in Los Angeles

With smart controls in place and an efficient unit inside the home, you’ll start to see lower energy usage and costs on your bill.  Remember, even high-efficiency units require regular maintenance and care to keep working. But these systems are definitely worth it if you’re looking for ultimate home comfort and energy efficiency.

If you need expert help with your unit, call Brody Pennell Heating and Air Conditioning today at (310) 896-4911 to schedule an appointment.

Ductless HVAC systems, as their names suggest, are home comfort systems that do not utilize ductwork. Instead of relying on one, centralized unit that is connected to the rest of the home through a channel of ducts, ductless systems are wall-mounted and can perform the same heating and cooling for an entire home or room.

By ditching ductwork, ductless systems provide significant benefits for home and business owners looking for a more efficient and convenient solution for heating and cooling.

Benefits of Ductless HVAC Systems

If you are in the market for a new HVAC system, consider these five factors in deciding whether a ductless HVAC system could be right for your home.

1. Superior Efficiency

By not requiring ductwork to force cool or warm air throughout your home, ductless systems avoid costly leakage that occurs in ducts. Over time, ductwork loosens, creating gaps. These open areas force centralized systems to work harder and use more energy to provide the same home comfort as their ductless counterparts. The extra distance between the system and the rest of the home will also add to the overall energy consumption of your unit.

Ductless systems can save up to 30% more energy than centralized systems because of these factors. All of these savings can add up over the course of the system’s lifetime.

2. Improved Carbon and Interior Footprint

By heating and cooling your home as efficiently as possible, you place less strain on your electrical systems to provide your home with the comfort you desire. In addition to limiting your carbon footprint, you can also maximize your home’s square footage by not requiring the use of larger indoor HVAC units and ductwork. For smaller homes and apartments, this can make a notable difference regarding the design and layout of your home.

3. Easy Installation

Installing ductwork can be a lengthy and expensive process. While ductless HVAC systems are smaller and more compact in their design, which allows for a quicker and more efficient installation.

Ductless systems are simply mounted onto the wall in the area of the home that needs heating or cooling. The process still requires a great deal of skill and expertise, but it is significantly more straightforward and leaves fewer variables that can extend the installation process. The simple installation gives homeowners greater comfort in knowing that the quoted price and timeline will rarely vary for ductless system installations.

4. Cleaner Indoor Air Quality

Like centralized systems, ductless HVAC units can utilize added devices that help to improve indoor air quality such as UV lamps, ventilators, and air purifiers. In addition to these indoor air quality products, ductless systems have their unique benefits in that they eliminate the exposure to contaminants that can be found in ducts.

Pests, dust, and dander often gather in a home’s ductwork. It’s the perfect hiding place for these less than desirable things. Unless you regularly have your ducts cleaned out by a professional, the “fresh air” from your air conditioner, is not as fresh as you think. With ductless systems, you’re receiving air directly from the source.

5. Comfort Flexibility

By not requiring an entire household or building to be restricted to the same, centralized HVAC unit, ductless systems can be placed throughout a home to provide customized temperature control. Multiple ductless systems are the best way to effectively and efficiently zone a house.

Ready to Go Ductless?

Curious about whether or not ductless HVAC is right for your home? Our home comfort specialists can help you better understand the benefits of ductless and help you choose the best HVAC system for your home. For more information on ductless HVAC systems, visit our ductless page or give us a call: (310) 896-4911.

Whether you’re an L.A. native who has lived in your home for a decade or a new transplant to our beautiful city – and new to your home too – feeling comfortable is probably on the top of your list of priorities. We spend a LOT of our lives in places where we’re not comfortable like work, school, the grocery store, a first date, a job interview, and a whole host of other places where everything feels rigid, awkward, too hot, too cold, or utterly unwelcoming. Your home should be different.

At home, you should feel like the atmosphere, the look and feel, the temperature, and even the air you breathe is catered to your preference and desires. You are the king or queen of your own castle, and it should feel that way year round. We’ve rounded up some of the BEST, easiest ways to improve your home comfort whether your home is old, new, or somewhere in between.

Embrace Your Space

Whether you’re in a minimalist one-bedroom home with a partner or roommate or you’re living in a four-bedroom family home with kids and pets, it’s important to love the space you’re in. This means that every room in your home is functional for your needs and that whether you’re working to transform tight spaces or happy spreading out, you can make it yours.

How to make your L.A. house a home:

There are many different ways that you can make your house feel more like home. House Nerd suggests tips like:

  • Diversify where you buy your home goods from.
    If everything in your home comes from IKEA, Target, Crate & Barrell or Pottery Barn this year, your home is going to look more like a catalog of stock images and less like an expression of you and yours. Pick up pieces as you go, and don’t take ALL your cues from the store display.
  • Display sentimental or personal items.
    Your home will feel less staged and more comfortable when you see yourself reflected in every space. This might mean hanging photos, shelving books that mean something to you, or putting up your kids’ artwork.
  • Add some greenery.
    Your home can really feel like you and like a place where real life happens when you infuse your spaces with plant life. Add a hanging pot, a succulent, or a 6-foot tree wherever it suits you, and watch how that little touch of green can impact your environment.
  • When all else fails, relax.
    Don’t worry so much about how your home will appeal to others. Instead, focus on making it work for YOU, and watch how quickly you become more confident and comfortable in every room. That comfort will be contagious when you entertain, and you’ll feel proud to share your home with others.

Revamp a Room Affordably

We all have those rooms that were the last to get the golden touch. Perhaps when you moved into your space you made the living and dining rooms the oases that they should be – ripe for entertaining – but the poor bathrooms lack the luxe finish.

Brainstorm ways to start giving these rooms the attention they need without a pricey, stressful overhaul. Swap out hardware, paint an accent wall, or add a new texture with drapes, a rug, or even a set of fresh towels in the half bath. A quick touch-up will feel like self-care when you walk into a room and feel at home instead of ill-at-ease.

Breathe Cleaner Indoor Air

This might seem like a rookie tip, but you’ll be surprised how many people aren’t giving their indoor air quality enough attention. For many homes, swapping out filters as recommended is enough to breathe easy. However, Los Angeles can fall victim to smog, emissions, wildfires, and other outdoor influences that can seep indoors. Indoor air cleaners and purifiers can help ease the burden on your filter and help your HVAC system (and your lungs) work as they should.

Control Humidity in Your Home

Imbalanced humidity is the enemy of comfort. Too much humidity and you’re going to feel clammy, phlegmy, and overcome by that sticky, summertime feeling you DON’T want. Especially here in California, humidity just isn’t that common, so having an excess of humidity in your home will feel strange and uncomfortable for you. Likewise, if your home is too dry, you’ll feel it too. Dry eyes, bloody noses, itchy skin, and red, dry eyes are all signs that your home needs a humidifier.

A professional can come and analyze your home to let you know where your humidity level stands and how to rectify any imbalance but you may be able to identify that need for yourself, too. Once your humidity level is within an ideal, comfortable range, you’ll feel so much better.

Invest in Home Security

If you and your family don’t feel safe, you can’t feel comfortable. Security and comfort go hand in hand. For you, this may mean installing security cameras or an alarm system or having regular pest control appointments to avoid creepy crawlies.

It is also essential that your home is equipped with working and reliable smoke detectors and CO detectors. Learn more about the dangers of carbon monoxide here. Once your home is secured with these measures of safety, you can rest easy knowing that you are doing everything you can to keep your family safe.

Upgrade to a Smart Home

While technology can sometimes feel like a burden, it isn’t the enemy. Smart and conscientious scientists and technicians work to improve our world by inventing and improving technologies to make life easier, safer, and more comfortable for us.

While some “smart home” technologies might be extravagant for your lifestyle, and not everyone needs a refrigerator that carries on conversations with you, there are some smart home upgrades that could make you happier and more comfortable. For example, an Amazon Alexa or other smart device can play music for you, turn your lights on and off at your request, make phone calls, provide answers to your questions, and a lot more that could make life easier.

smart thermostat is also a good move for individuals looking to upgrade the comfort in their home. The more control you have over your temperature and home environment, the more comfortable you’ll be. Not only does a smart thermostat give you more control over your home comfort, but it can also help you save more energy over time, leading to lower utility bills. (And who doesn’t like to save money while keeping comfortable?)

Feel Cozy Year-Round

So much about home comfort comes down to temperature, doesn’t it? When you’re too cold, it won’t matter how beautiful your wall décor is or how fluffy those bath towels look folded in the master bath – you’re going to be uncomfortable. Similarly, if you’re feeling sweaty in these hot SoCal summers, nothing will make you feel comfortable until the air conditioner steps up to save the day.

At Brody Pennell, we like to think of ourselves as home comfort experts. We’ve been in the business long enough to know exactly what it takes to keep L.A. homeowners comfortable year-round. Below, we’ve put together a little guide with our top 5 expert tips for keeping your temperature RIGHT where you want it.

How to Control Your Home Temperature

  • Learn to program your thermostat.
    When your thermostat is more intuitive to your patterns of life and knows when to level your temperatures up or down, you’ll be able to feel comfortable and catered to all the time. Don’t want to bother changing the temperature every time you leave and return? Invest in a programmable or smart thermostat that will automatically adjust the temperature for you for optimal home comfort and energy savings.
  • Consider zoning your space.
    If you and your family members tend to prefer different levels of warm and cool temperatures OR if parts of your home tend to retain heat or feel more drafty, zoning could help you keep things more comfortable throughout your home. When you use zoning to customize the comfort levels in each room of your home, you can make sure that everyone stays comfy, no matter what their preferences are. You can also use zoning to help balance temperatures throughout your space to make sure that the comfort you feel in the kitchen travels with you to the den, your bedroom, and beyond.
  • Don’t work against your HVAC system
    Being cognizant of your lifestyle and how it impacts your home comfort will allow you to help your HVAC system perform at its best. For example, by turning off lights, drawing window blinds closed, or using fans wisely, you can help make sure your air conditioner isn’t working too hard. This will save you money on energy costs, keep your AC in better shape for longer, and prevent wear & tear. Similarly, by running your heat just a little lower, keeping your filter clean, and warming your home with a fireplace or space heater when possible, you can keep your heat pump or furnace happy and functional for much longer. Using your heater more efficiently will result in cheaper operating costs and more comfort for you.
  • Have your system properly maintained.
    Having your system maintained both DIY and by a professional can extend its life and help ensure that the system keeps working effectively and efficiently. Proper maintenance can also help you get ahead of a major issue, preventing the need for costly repairs or uncomfortable downtime for your system. Though there are some maintenance tasks you can perform yourself, like changing your air filter, you may want to call in the professionals for help with other tasks like cleaning and lubricating your equipment. When your HVAC technician is staying abreast of issues, he or she can help you avoid waiting so long to repair that the system fails and you’re uncomfortable in your own home.
  • Replace your unit when it makes sense.
    HVAC systems – air conditioners, furnaces, heat pumps, ductless systems, and all of their components – have a lifespan. They do not live forever. This means that at some point, your system will need to be replaced. Heed the warnings of your HVAC system itself and consult with a professional if you think you’re getting close to needing a replacement. Waiting too long could result in system failure that will leave you sweaty in July, frozen in the winter, and unhappy with the atmosphere of your home. Here are some signs that your system might need to be replaced.

If you find yourself in the market for a tune-up, a repair, or maintenance on your HVAC system OR if you would like to consult about upgrading your HVAC system, contact Brody Pennell today!

Ultimately, feeling comfortable, safe, healthy, and happy in your home doesn’t have to be expensive, impossible, or difficult to attain. With a few tweaks and more focus on the important things, your home comfort is 100% in your control.

Which tips will YOU be implementing this summer? What else do YOU think makes a home more comfortable? Let us know on Facebook or poll your friends by hitting the SHARE buttons below!

Inconsistencies in temperature inside a household can be attributed to many different factors. The position of a room can affect its temperature. As warm air rises and cool air sinks, high leveled homes with multiple floors often heat up relatively faster. On the other hand, lower stories and even basements can be much colder than the rest of the home. Architecture also plays a role as vaulted ceilings tend to retain heat poorly and windows that face the sun can warm up a room quickly.

Whatever the case, these problems are addressed by system zoning.

Zoning HVAC Services

Zoning is pretty much a straightforward concept. The household is divided into zones with each one having its own thermostat. This network of thermostats are then monitored and controlled by a central panel that automatically determines areas of uneven temperature distribution. The panel also controls dampers within your homes ductwork, allowing temperature-controlled air to enter areas that need it.

Advantages of Zoning

Most HVAC services and even the Department of Energy recommend zoning as a smart way to achieve energy consumption reduction goals. By programming a house to heat up or cool down only the areas that need it, homes can save up to 30% on their energy bills. The idea of system zoning is parallel to turning off the lights in rooms that are not currently in use.

Disadvantages of Zoning

As with most technologies, having HVAC services install programmable thermostats and divide the home into zones requires a considerable initial investment. In fact, despite the promise of future savings, plenty of homes have not made the switch simply because of the cost alone. Unfortunately, this is not a do-it-yourself project that can be handled by anyone. You will need the help of licensed professionals to have your home zoned.

Hassle-Free HVAC Services by Brody-Pennell

If you are considering system zoning as an effective investment to save on future energy costs, you can schedule a free consultation with the heating and cooling experts at Brody-Pennell. Call us now at (310) 836-0606. Our services are available in Los Angeles, CA and all surrounding areas.