They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me

There Are Giant Mice In The Ductwork... With Tools

The Great Stimulus Project of 2009

And now giant mutant voles are eating into the side of the house, too.

Remember that scene in the medical dramas where they open up some poor guys chest and remove his heart, only to discover that the donor heart is defective or the connective tissue or arteries just fall apart when they try to sew it all back together again? Well thank goodness we're not there yet. But our furnace is sitting in the garage and it isn't even noon yet. (grin)

Alas, poor York, I knew ye well these past sixteen years...

Back in 2007 we had the Great Rinnai Hot Water Heater, Sump Pump and Kohler Backup Generator Project, which all stemmed from the fact that our water heater was getting old and there was no place to drain it in the basement... The 2009 Great Heating and Cooling Project began with the simple desire to raise the humidity in the house during the winter. It's supposed to be good for the sinuses and keep down colds, flu and sinus infections. But putting a whole house humidifier on a nearly sixteen year old furnace seemed silly. Oh, and the one thing I've always hated about the current furnace were the supposedly washable furnace filters. No frame, stiff scratchy fiberglass and impossible to get in and out. Did NOT help our sinuses that we never cleaned the damned thing very often.

So let's talk about a new furnace. And as long as we are, what about central air conditioning? Well, it turns out 2009 is great year to be talking about this sort of stuff. There's some energy efficiency Federal tax rebate money for going high efficiency. In our case it means we could've spent X dollars for a 90% efficient furnace to replace the 85% York we have (uh, had). Or we could spend Y dollars for a 95% efficient furnace plus a heat pump. Y - X = around $1500 and we'd qualify for the $1500 max rebate. So for the same net money, we can get a more efficient heating system and essentially free central A.C. for the summer.

As for air filtration, we looked at an $800 electrostatic unit, but you have to wash the stainless steel blades every couple of weeks. For about $250 we're getting this large cartridge unit that gets changed once a year for about $30. It's gonna take another sixteen years to get around to making up the cost differential with the one-a-year cartridge system -- no-brainer decision there, folks.

Banging and Klanging

So yesterday was Grading Day. And after a nap we went out to the movies and dinner at a Thai restaurant and a pleasant evening. Now Greg and his helper are busily changing our house. They've budgeted two days for the job, but have half of Friday penciled in for trouble-shooting.

And then I'm off to Penguicon!

Dr. Phil
Tags: allendale, house, technology, upgrades

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