Archive for February, 2015

What Type of Insulation Is Used in the Attic?

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

*Astro Air Inc. no longer offers Attic Insulation services. Please visit our Indoor Air Quality service page to learn more about our services.

Many people associate the term “insulation” with cooler weather. When it’s cold outside, you want there to be enough insulation in your home to lock in some heat so that your home stays warm. You can also purchase insulated blankets, jackets, and travel mugs, all of which are products manufactured to retain heat. However, insulation is just as important in the summertime as it is in the winter.

When you decide it’s time to take charge of your monthly bills and keep your home more comfortable in both the summer and the winter, call our team of skilled professionals. We can evaluate your existing insulation and help you to decide whether and where more insulation would help. Call Astro Air Inc. for attic insulation services in Wellington today.

Materials Used in Insulation

There are a number of different types of materials that may be used for attic insulation, but what they all have in common is their ability to slow the transfer of heat. In the colder months, your heating system works hard to generate heat, and for maximum efficiency, you should do everything in your power to keep this heat in the home. Insulation keeps heat from moving easily out through the walls, attic, or ducts. In the summer, insulation helps to keep heat from entering your home, making your air conditioner run more efficiently.

The materials used in insulations are most commonly some type of fiber, either natural or synthetic. The most common type of blanket insulation is made of fiberglass, though some blanket insulation is made of mineral wool or natural wools. A technician can lay these batts and rolls in the attic, though blown-in insulation is sometimes preferable.

Blown-in or loose-fill insulation involves using a machine to blow fibers into the area. In the attic, this is often ideal, since loose fill insulation can reach little nooks and crannies, and because the R-value of these materials is generally quite high. The R-value is an indicator of how effective and insulation material is, and the higher the number, the greater the efficiency.

You should always allow a professional to help you pick out your new insulation materials, as they have the right training to make such an involved decision. Call Astro Air Inc. for attic insulation services in Wellington today!

How Can I Tell I Need Duct Repair?

Monday, February 16th, 2015

If you’ve ever driven down a road full of potholes, you know how ineffective the travel can be; you may also incur expense due to a flat tire or other problem caused by the holes and cracks. The same happens with your faulty ductwork: the air flow becomes slow and contaminated, and can result in the need for repair. So how do you know when it’s time to schedule duct repair service for your Lake Worth home? Here are some tips from the trained experts at Astro Air, Inc.

High Energy Bills

Faulty ductwork can allow a significant amount of air to escape from your HVAC system; in fact, faulty ductwork can account for up to 30% of your home’s total air loss. The reason you’ll see this reflected in your energy bills is because your HVAC system will compensate for this air loss by working harder, which means your system uses more energy.

Poor Indoor Air Quality

Not only can a significant amount of air escape from faulty ductwork, lots of things can get inside the ductwork, too. Contaminants such as dirt and dust can become excessive, air pollutants and excess moisture have direct access to your living spaces thanks to the faults in your ductwork.

Uneven Temperatures

Your ductwork doesn’t corrode or break in a uniform way across your ductwork system; instead, there are usually sections that are more problematic than others. This uneven corrosion can result in uneven heating and cooling for your home, as the vents that are more affected by problems will have less ability to deliver the air you need.

Whistling Noises

Hearing air move through your ductwork is normal, but if you are hearing whistling noises through your vents with each cycle, the whistling can be an indication that there are holes and cracks through which air is escaping.

Duct repair is a long-term solution for some fairly serious problems; if you are seeing the signs of faulty ductwork in your home, call the experts at Astro Air, Inc. today!

Some of the Unusual Movies Released for Valentine’s Day

Saturday, February 14th, 2015

Hollywood has always tried to match movies up to the seasons to draw droves of viewers to the theaters: October is packed with fright-offerings, while the winter holidays skew toward warm and pleasing family films (as well as Oscar hopefuls). Valentine’s Day falls in an odd spot when it comes to the movie release calendar, however, since February tends to be a slower time for the film industry. The studios are as likely to slot strange movies that don’t fit anywhere else in their annual schedules into the Valentine’s Day weekend as they are films with powerful romantic appeal.

So, while the second weekend of February has featured hugely successful romantic comedies like Hitch, The Wedding Singer, and (of course) Valentine’s Day, some truly weird choices have debuted in this weekend as well. And a few have even gone on to tremendous success despite the bizarre match with the holiday. Here are a couple of the odder Valentine’s Day movie releases:

  • Dracula (1931): Yes, this Halloween perennial and the start of Universal Studio’s Classic Monsters actually came out on Valentine’s Day! But perhaps this makes some sense, as the Dracula legend has often received a “doomed lover” approach in the many years since Bela Lugosi made the aristocratic vampire a screen icon.
  • The Silence of the Lambs (1991): Does any film seem less appropriate for Valentine’s Day than this unnerving and sometimes very violent psychological thriller? What’s even more astonishing than the film’s release date is that The Silence of the Lambs eventually nabbed the Oscar for Best Picture, an almost unheard of occurrence for a movie released so early in the year.
  • Daredevil (2003): This Marvel comic adaptation featuring Ben Affleck as a blind superhero does contain a romantic subplot, but the stronger connection to Valentine’s Day may just be that Daredevil wears a bright red costume.
  • A Good Day to Die Hard (2013): The least successful of the Die Hard film franchise, this is an excellent example of a studio dropping a film into a weekend where it doesn’t fit in the hopes that it works as counter-programming. (It didn’t.)
  • Wayne’s World (1992): Now here is an example of counter-programming that clicked with audiences. This comedy based on a Saturday Night Live sketch turned into one of that year’s biggest hits and spawned a sequel.

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day with a trip to the movie theater, or you have your own special plans, everyone here at [(site_name)] hopes you and your loved ones have a wonderful weekend.

How UV Germicidal Lights Improve Indoor Air Quality

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

It is common knowledge that dust is a ubiquitous airborne pollutant in homes across the country. What is less common knowledge, however, is the incredible amount of other contaminants in your indoor air that you are exposed to every day. Pollen and dander from pets and insects are lung irritants, similar to dust. Many allergy sufferers find their symptoms severely worsened by exposure to these contaminants. Viruses, bacteria, and mold are also quite common, and contribute to the frequency of illnesses among homeowners. These biological contaminants are much more detrimental, and much harder to get rid of, than minor irritants like dust and pollen. So, how can homeowners fight against these microscopic pollutants? One of the best ways is with a UV germicidal light. Let’s examine what a UV germicidal light is, and how it benefits your home by sterilizing your air.

What is a UV Germicidal Light?

A UV germicidal light is a type of air purifier, which can be used either in a portable format or installed in such a way as to service the entire house. It is actually very simple in design, just one or two special light bulbs that give off short-wave ultraviolet light. This light is harmless to humans, but can be very effective at cleansing the air around it of biological contaminants.

How does a UV Germicidal Light Cleanse the Air?

Many biological contaminants are extremely phobic of certain kinds of ultraviolet light. Exposure to this light destroys parts of their cells that they need in order to keep multiplying, rendering them sterile or even killing them completely. This is why darkness is a necessity for most mold growth. The cells that make up the mold’s structure cannot survive in direct sunlight. The UV germicidal light takes advantage of this genetic weakness by subjecting the air around it to enough ultraviolet light to kill most biological pollutants. In this way, the light improves your air quality by killing any germs that might infect and sicken you.

If you’re interested in installing a germicidal light in your home, call Astro Air Inc. to schedule an appointment with us today. We provide indoor air quality services in the West Palm Beach area.