Savings Articles

Keep Heat Gain in Check With These Tips for Your Fort Collins Home

August 4, 2015

Summers in the Fort Collins area can get toasty, and with the hot weather comes increased heat gain and household cooling costs. The good news is that you can reduce your dependency on your air conditioner by taking some relatively simple and low cost steps. Doing so not only results in greater energy savings, but also…

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Don’t Fall for These Home Cooling Myths

July 14, 2015

Over the years, you’ve likely heard a lot of misinformation concerning residential air conditioning. Some of these home cooling myths are harmless, but others can cost you money while keeping your home from achieving the comfort you might otherwise enjoy. Get the truth about these four home cooling myths. Myth: Ceiling Fans Will Lower the…

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How to Read the EnergyGuide Label When Purchasing an HVAC

July 2, 2015

You’ve seen the distinctive yellow EnergyGuide label on new appliances, and you probably have a vague idea of the federal program’s purpose: for comparing the energy use of one appliance to others of the same type. The label is particularly useful for energy-intensive appliances, such as air conditioners and furnaces, because the potential savings are…

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Getting a New HVAC System? Consider These Things First

June 18, 2015

Getting a new HVAC system is a decision that will impact your household budget and the comfort of your family for the next 10 to 15 years. To help you make the wisest equipment choice, discuss your options with a reputable HVAC professional and consider the following key factors. Lifetime costs – Go beyond the…

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Helpful Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Programmable Thermostat

June 4, 2015

Installing a programmable thermostat can reduce your energy consumption and lower your utility bills. It can also help you gain better control over the climate within your home. Like any tool, the better you know how to use it, the better the results will be. To that end, the following tips can help you set…

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Don’t Forget to Weatherize Existing Windows for Better Energy Efficiency

May 28, 2015

If your goal is to curb energy consumption around your home, one important task that you shouldn’t forget is tackling drafty, inefficient windows. These tips can help you weatherize existing windows so you boost comfort, lower energy usage and save money. Purchase Shrink Film Kits Simply choose a size to fit your windows, apply the…

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Energy-Efficient Ways to Lower Cooling Costs and Stay Comfortable

May 26, 2015

It’s bound to be another hot, dry summer in northern Colorado. How do you plan to keep your cooling costs down? You could shut off the air conditioner altogether, but what about staying comfortable? The following energy efficiency tips will help lower cooling costs without sacrificing comfort. Program your thermostat for savings. Don’t have a programmable…

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Air Conditioner Maintenance: Simple Tasks a Homeowner Can Handle

May 12, 2015

Performing regular air conditioner maintenance will improve energy efficiency and extend the life of your system. It’s easy to take your HVAC system for granted until it breaks down, but this approach will result in larger repair bills as well as higher electricity bills. Add these simple tasks to your regular home checklist to keep…

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Reduce Heating Costs with Energy-Saving Home Upgrades

March 12, 2015

Improving the overall energy efficiency of your home can help reduce heating costs and increase comfort levels during our cold Colorado winters. To start saving more energy today, consider tackling these effective energy-saving upgrades in your Fort Collins home. Schedule an Energy Audit During an energy audit, specialized assessment techniques and tools are used to identify efficiency…

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Maintain Your Heat Pump for Full Efficiency and Comfort

March 10, 2015

Heat pumps are a terrific innovation that have been used for many years across the country in various climates. Installing a heat pump in your home can save you more energy and money provided it’s maintained and operated properly. The following are some keys to operating your heat pump and keeping it maintained: Maintaining filters can’t be stressed enough: Make…

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Tips for Making Your Oil Furnace Burn Less Oil This Winter

February 26, 2015

An oil furnace can provide many years of reliable energy-efficient operation even if you do little more than change your air filter every few months. However, there are some ways you can make your system burn even less oil and still provide the same level of comfort to your family on cold winter days. Look over the…

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How to Ensure You Stay Energy Efficient With Your Holiday Light Display

December 4, 2014

Holiday light displays in some neighborhoods begin as early as October as homeowners display Halloween lights before transitioning to Christmas lights. To create a lovely display without raising your electricity bill, holiday lights and energy efficiency need to go hand in hand. There are many ways to keep holiday displays from raising bills including using LED…

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How Your Programmable Thermostat Can Help You Stay Warmer This Winter

October 28, 2014

The winter is approaching and you will want to keep your home warm without breaking the bank. If you have an old dial-type thermostat, you may have been keeping your temperature set low to try and save energy. A programmable thermostat can help with energy savings while maintaining a more comfortable temperature during busy times in your…

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Why an Energy Audit Will Help You Save

October 9, 2014

Cooler months are fast approaching and you’re probably looking for ways to save on heating costs. One of the first steps to take in determining where you can save on energy costs and improve the efficiency of your heating system is to have an energy audit. An energy audit, or energy assessment, can tell you…

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If You Need to Purchase a New Furnace — Consider Your Budget

September 30, 2014

The average life span of a residential furnace is only 15 to 20 years. If your furnace is more than 15 years old, you have a right to be concerned that it might fail over the long winter. However, before you purchase a new furnace, you’ll want to set a budget. Fuel Types The first…

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How to Save Energy When You are Working During the Day

September 18, 2014

It comes as no surprise that the economy is sluggish and what that means for most of us is a need to trim our bills. If you have been wondering how to save energy, one of the largest consumers of energy are our HVAC systems, so that seems like a great place to start. If…

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A/C Not Working as It Should? Symptoms It May Be Saying Goodbye

August 14, 2014

Is your A/C not working the way it should? How do you know when your air conditioning inside your home needs to be replaced?  Air conditioners don’t live forever and the EPA actually recommends that you replace your air conditioner with a more energy efficient Energy Star rated unit every ten years. But if you aren’t in…

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In the Attic? Spot Check for Adequate Insulation

August 5, 2014

One of the easiest things you can do in your home to increase energy savings is to ensure that your attic has adequate insulation. If it doesn’t, it becomes one of the prime ways for warmth to escape from the home, or for cool air in your home to escape. The next time you’re in the attic, it…

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Setting a Programmable Thermostat Is as Easy as 1, 2, 3

July 31, 2014

There’s a lot of buzz about the programmable thermostat in the area of home comfort, but if you’ve avoided installing one for fear it’ll be too complicated, don’t let that hold you back. The reason for all the talk is that a programmable thermostat can truly save a significant amount of energy and dollars for your household.…

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Vacations Can Be Expensive But Your Energy Bill Doesn’t Have To Be While You’re Away

July 24, 2014

Airline tickets for the entire family? Check. New bathing suits? Check. Hotel reservations? Check. Sunscreen, beach book and shades? Check, check and check. Summer vacations are expensive, which is exactly why you should take a few simple steps before you leave home to make sure you’re not wasting money on your energy bill while you’re off…

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Help Your A/C’s Performance This Summer

June 19, 2014

As energy costs continue to rise in the Fort Collins area, keeping your home cool during the summer may prove to be an expensive proposition. If you would like to keep your house comfortable, while reducing your utility bills, consider these guidelines to help optimize your A/C’s performance: Use Only Matched Components: All of the…

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Reading the Signs for When It’s Time to Replace the A/C

June 17, 2014

The decision to replace the A/C requires considering several factors. It’s a not-too-soon/not-too-late scenario: Ideally, you want to upgrade after you’ve gotten the maximum service life out of your existing unit but before it begins costing you lots of money in high-priced repairs and overall outmoded efficiency.  Here are some guidelines to help you make…

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Adding a Zoning System May be the Solution to the Hot or Cold Spots in Your Home

June 10, 2014

A zoning system solves the problems associated with uncomfortable temperatures throughout your home and can also reduce energy consumption measurably over the course of the year. A zoned home is divided into similar sections that have either the same usage patterns or thermal characteristics. Each zone runs independently and if conditioned air isn’t required, that…

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It’s Summertime, and the Savings Are Easier With Energy Star

June 5, 2014

We are all looking to save a little money where we can and when it comes to keeping your home cool during the summer, the place to begin is with an Energy Star cooling system. Because these appliances are designed with efficiency in mind, they are not only better for the environment, they are better for…

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Learn What the Terms AFUE, SEER, and HSPF Mean for Your HVAC System

April 22, 2014

The upcoming spring months can bring a variety of climate changes to the Fort Collins area so it’s important your HVAC system is working efficiently. AFUE, SEER, and HSPF are all measure of heating and cooling efficiencies; however, they vary on how the efficiency is measured and what it could mean for your heating and…

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Learn How Your Yard’s Landscaping Can Help Your HVAC System

April 17, 2014

Before the advent of modern HVAC systems, plants contributed to “natural” heating and cooling methods. Certain plants were selected for their siting, shading and screening benefits to help mitigate extreme temperatures, which kept families more comfortable. The same principles apply today. Did you know you can save money on your utility bills by designing your yard’s landscaping to work…

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Furnace Replacement? Before You Commit, Consider These Pointers

March 25, 2014

No one likes hearing “you may need a furnace replacement.” Sometimes the truth is hard to hear because furnace replacement can be expensive and time consuming. However, it is a necessary part of homeownership. Before putting up the cash to replace, consider the following pointers. These tips will help you determine if replacement is the…

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Is a Condensing Gas Furnace a Good Investment in Our Climate?

March 13, 2014

A condensing gas furnace is a smart and safe investment for homeowners in regions with long cold winters and high heating bills, like we experience here in Fort Collins. If it’s time to replace your heating system, read on to discover why a high-efficiency furnace makes sense and saves energy dollars. High Heating Efficiency, Low…

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Ice Dams Are More Than a Nuisance — They Are Also Costly

March 11, 2014

Icicles are one of the most iconic signs of winter in Fort Collins. A house with an array of icicles hanging from the roof has a certain type of charm to it. Unfortunately, icicles are a sign of a dangerous problem; ice dams. These dangerous winter obstacles can seriously damage your home. What Are Ice…

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Some of These Myths About Electricity Use May be Costing You

March 4, 2014

Cutting your home’s electricity use starts with your HVAC system, since in most households, it’s responsible for half of the energy you use. These are the most commonly held myths about heating and cooling that many homeowners perceive will lower consumption, but in reality, they increase it. Buying efficient HVAC equipment automatically saves money. While…

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Tight Ductwork: Just What the Doctor Ordered for Greater Savings

February 27, 2014

Maintaining the integrity of the ductwork in your Fort Collins home is paramount for your comfort in the coming winter months. Having tight ductwork will not only keep your home a stable, comfortable temperature, but it can save you a considerable amount of money on your heating and electric bills, and ultimately make your house more environmentally friendly…

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Wifi Thermostats: Take Charge of Your Home’s Climate, Whether at Home or Away

February 25, 2014

WiFi thermostats interface with a computer or smartphone to give you access to its settings remotely. A smart thermostat helps you fine tune your control over your house’s climate, resulting in a more comfortable home with energy cost savings. In most cases, you’re out of the home for school or work during the day. You…

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Why a Variable Capacity Gas Furnace or Heat Pump Are Good Options For Our Cold Climate

February 20, 2014

Variable capacity furnaces and heat pumps are a great long-term investment for those of us living in cold climates. They heat your home more efficiently, making it cozier with less energy. Though they cost more up front, variable capacity furnaces and heat pumps save you money in the long run by reducing energy costs. What…

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Understanding How to Read Your Gas Bill: Your Way to Real Energy Savings

February 4, 2014

Understanding how to read your gas bill can help you save money by keeping utility costs under control. You can also reduce costs with regular maintenance. How to Read Your Gas Bill First, let’s look at some important terms. The baseline allowance is the amount of energy that the utility company calculates that your home…

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Energy Star Appliances Offer Year-Round Savings

January 16, 2014

Need to purchase a new HVAC system for your home? Look for the Energy Star label on heating and cooling systems and you’ll save energy, which is good for both the world and your wallet. Before you begin your search for an Energy Star appliance, here are some terms that you should become familiar with.…

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Why a Two-Stage Furnace is a Wise Investment for Fort Collins

January 14, 2014

Winter is in full force in Fort Collins and you’ve no-doubt kicked on your furnace. If your current system is costing you because you you have to set the thermostat so high just to keep minimally warm, it may be time to replace.  Upgrading to a two-stage furnace may be the answer to increased comfort and…

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Energy-Saving Tips for a Greener Winter

December 17, 2013

The Fort Collins area can inspire everyone to think about the environment. When you’re surrounded by so much beautiful land, it’s hard not to want to take better care of it by living green. Green living not only helps care for our community, but also saves you money. Consider these energy-saving tips to reduce the energy…

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Your Weathertight Home: A Beginner’s Guide to Caulk

December 3, 2013

Winter is approaching and bringing cold weather and windy conditions along with it. If your home isn’t sealed tight, you run the risk of facing substantial heating bills. Caulking windows, doors and cracks is a great first line of defense. Caulk is relatively easy to apply. A few supplies, a weekend and a beginner’s guide to…

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Those 25C Energy Tax Credits: the Time to Use Them Is Running Out

November 28, 2013

If you’ve been putting off one or more energy-efficiency upgrades, now is the time to get going. The sizable 25C energy tax credits are set to expire on Dec. 31. Delay much longer, and you’ll lose these incentives. You can qualify for tax credits equaling 10 percent of your cost–up to $300–if you install a…

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Holiday-Season Energy Savings: A Little Something to Give Yourself

November 21, 2013

The holiday season is swiftly approaching, as well as the parties and family gatherings that make this time of year so special. Lots of cooking and entertaining are a good way to celebrate but can also bring a surprise in your energy bill at the beginning of the year. Fortunately, there are ways to keep…

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Closing Rooms to Save Energy: Good Thinking or Bad Idea?

October 31, 2013

Considering the cost of heating a home these days, who isn’t interested in saving a little energy? You’ve probably put some effort into sealing the air leaks in your home and adding insulation. Maybe you’ve even replaced your furnace. Now you might be thinking about closing one or two rooms that you no longer use.…

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Whole-House Energy-Saving Tips for Your Fort Collins Home

October 15, 2013

You’ve just replaced your windows with highly efficient Energy Star units, or you’ve gotten a new furnace with an annual fuel utilization efficiency rating that’s as high as they come, and you’re expecting a significant decrease in your energy bills. You will see some. But if you haven’t taken a comprehensive approach to energy efficiency…

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Programmable Thermostat ‘Do’s’ to Save You Money

October 2, 2013

Using a programmable thermostat in your Fort Collins area home is a great way to save on energy costs while maintaining home comfort, as long as you use it correctly. A digital thermostat used incorrectly can actually cost you more money than setting a static temperature on an older analog thermostat. This happens when homeowners,…

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For More Control Over Your Home’s Indoor Temperature, Upgrade to a Zoning System

August 8, 2013

With summer in full swing, it may seem that your air conditioning system gets hardly any rest, and your electricity bills might be the proof. If you’re like most other homeowners across the United States, you’re looking for ways to control your cooling costs without sacrificing any comfort. One of the best ways to do…

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Solar Attic Fans — An Affordable Method of Summer Ventilation

August 1, 2013

A properly vented attic keeps your home cooler while lowering your utility bills and combating condensation buildup, which can lead to mold, mildew and rot. Attic ventilation creates constant air circulation throughout the space and helps to dissipate moisture. Electric attic fans and passive ventilation have traditionally been used. But solar attic fans can function…

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Seal Air Leaks to Keep the Conditioned Air You’re Paying For Inside Your Fort Collins Home

July 30, 2013

It can cost big bucks to keep a Fort Collins home cool in the summer. And because of that you might be hesitant to turn down the thermostat if you’re not as comfortable as you’d like to be. But did you ever stop to think that the air conditioner might not be the problem? Air…

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An Easy Guide to SEER Ratings

July 25, 2013

It has probably been awhile since you last shopped for an air conditioner, and you may be just a bit overwhelmed by the variety of choices you have these days. One very reliable measure of an air conditioner’s value is its seasonal energy efficiency ratio. You can find that rating on the yellow EnergyGuide label on…

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Attic Insulation — Just as Important in the Summer Months

July 23, 2013

You may think that attic insulation is important just in the winter, when Colorado’s cold breezes can easily seep into your home. Actually, attic insulation is just as important in the summer. Here’s why: It gets hot up there  On a warm day in Colorado, the heat in an attic can soar to 150 degrees.…

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R-22 Refrigerant Supplies Are Evaporating–Is Now the Time to Replace Your A/C?

July 9, 2013

If you have an older air conditioner, you may be aware that supplies of R-22 refrigerant — the kind that your cooling system probably uses — are drying up. Your HVAC technician may have mentioned this during your last A/C tune-up. The Environmental Protection Agency has ordered a steady reduction in production and consumption of the…

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Saving Energy This Summer: 9 Ways to Beat the Heat Without Busting the Budget

June 11, 2013

Great weather and lots of sunny days make Fort Collins one of the best places to live in the United States. But like the Rockies, summer temperatures can get right up there. Fortunately, you can take measures to save energy. None of the following nine tips will bust your budget: 1. Start at the top:…

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7 Key Ways to Control Your Cooling Costs As the Temperature Rises

May 21, 2013

Summers are gorgeous in Fort Collins. But they can also get hot. You’ll soon be relying on your air conditioner, and it’s likely that you’ll be looking for ways to control your cooling costs. To manage your air conditioning expenses this summer, try these seven low-cost tactics. Keep the heat out — Hang window shades or…

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Going With A Smart Programmable Thermostat? Now That’s The Idea

April 16, 2013

Many Fort Collins homeowners are familiar with the programmable thermostat – with just a few button presses, you can program your home’s HVAC system to operate efficiently for maximum energy savings. In the winter, you can program it to lower the temperature when you’re sleeping or away at work and raise it again before you…

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Furnace Troubleshooting: Simple Fixes You Can Try Yourself

April 4, 2013

Forced-air furnaces are designed to last for years with regular maintenance. But despite their overall reliability, furnaces can and do break down. Usually, this means a call to your HVAC contractor for a service call. Sometimes, though, some simple troubleshooting can remedy the problem. If your furnace breaks down, try one of these simple fixes…

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HVAC Tax Credits Back On For 2013

March 21, 2013

Passage of the American Taxpayer Relief Act early this year has made this an ideal time to make energy-efficiency upgrades in your home. Congress has restored homeowner tax credits that expired at the end of 2011. The 25C tax credits can now be applied to high-efficiency furnaces, heat pumps, boilers, central air conditioners and water…

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Learn How To Read Your Gas Bill, And Lock In Savings Too

February 28, 2013

Natural gas is a common source of fuel for home heating. To make the best and most economical use of this resource, it pays to know how to read your gas bill. When you understand what you’re paying for every month, you’ll be better able to identify areas where you can conserve and save money. BTU:…

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Get A Head Start With The Electronically Commutated Motor

February 19, 2013

Fifteen years ago, blower-fan motors in most furnaces were inherently inefficient. These permanent-split capacitor motors are now largely a thing of the past, thanks to the electronically commutated motor. If you’re looking for an HVAC upgrade, an ECM will give you a good start. How ECMs boost efficiency The PSC motor was always somewhat inefficient…

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Choosing The Energy Star Most-Efficient Label

February 12, 2013

Most homeowners know the value of choosing products with the Energy Star logo. Since 1992, it has been the go-to beacon, helping homeowners differentiate more-efficient home heating and cooling equipment, electronics and appliances from less-efficient products. But the Energy Star program is evolving. Motivated by multiple factors, the program has unveiled its Most-Efficient label, a…

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3 Tips For Avoiding Frozen Pipes In Your Fort Collins Home

January 24, 2013

A water pipe that freezes and then bursts can cause significant damage to your plumbing system, which is expensive to repair. And then there’s the inconvenience of going without water while the pipe is being repaired. It’s better to keep your pipes from freezing. Here are some preventive measures to consider taking. The conditions that…

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Preventing Ice Dams Means Never Having To Deal With Repercussions

January 22, 2013

If you’ve ever had to deal with an ice dam, it won’t take much to convince you of the importance of prevention. Dealing with an ice dam is an inconvenient, sometimes costly endeavor. In a worst-case scenario, you might have to replace your roof, remove mold or replace your gutters. It’s much easier to prevent…

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Changes In Furnace Efficiency Standards: What Fort Collins Homeowners Should Know

January 10, 2013

Changes in furnace efficiency standards are on the horizon for Fort Collins homeowners. That’s good news, because as more homeowners adopt higher-efficiency systems, greenhouse gas emissions will be lowered, natural resources will be conserved, demand on foreign fuel supplies will be reduced and — perhaps the most motivating factor of all — energy bills will…

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