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Top Maintenance Tips for a Healthy Home this Fall

2 minute read

If you’re not a fan of cutting the grass and pulling weeds, you may be excited that fall means weekend chores may become a little lighter. However, don’t close up the yard shed just yet! You can make the winter and next spring easier on yourself by tackling a few more projects this weekend.

 

Fall – with its cooler temperatures – is a great time to finish up some outdoor to-do’s when the sun is not blazing down. It’s also essential to make sure you’re ready for winter before it strikes and that requires some work on your home: inside and out. Here are a few tips to make sure you have a Healthy Home this fall and winter.

3 Outdoor Home Maintenance Tips

  1. Additional lighting – As the days get shorter, sprucing up walkways with ground lighting adds ambience as well as an added level of safety.
  2. Walk and caulk – Reducing energy bills, preventing drafts and keeping critters out of the house in the winter starts with a fresh bead of caulk around windows, siding and joints.
  3. Mulch garden beds – Adding fresh mulch around landscaping can help protect perennial plants from cold temperatures and keep weeds down next spring. It’s a fall home maintenance project that can also reduce work next summer.

3 Indoor Home Maintenance Tips

Of course, no fall home maintenance checklist is complete without ensuring the inside of a home is warm and cozy on cool fall nights. Here are some tasks to complete indoors each fall:

  1. Furnace Clean & Check – Your furnace is the heart of your house. It keeps it warm and cozy when the weather outside is anything but. However, it needs a yearly checkup to ensure it doesn’t stop working when you need it the most. Call an HVAC professional today to have it properly inspected and cleaned.
  2. Check your humidifier – Ensure whole-home humidifiers have a clean water panel and are working properly. A water panel change is essential to maintaining your humidifier. Proper humidification protects wood floors, instruments, art and furniture from dry air. It can also have positive impacts on health and comfort. Air that is too dry causes static shock, itchy skin, sore throat and other health issues.
  3. Improve air purification – When fall begins, it’s also a good reminder that it’s time to replace air purifier filters. A whole-home air purifier can also trap fall allergens, and bacteria and viruses, helping to keep families healthy all year round.

Home maintenance in fall is essential to keeping family members safe and comfortable during the winter.

Fall Wellness

Healthy Clean Air | Healthy Home |

Fall Wellness Tips for Your Home Environment

2 minute read

You try your best to stay healthy this time of year by getting flu shots and washing your hands regularly, but don’t forget about allergies. Fall can be the worst time of the year for allergy sufferers, especially those sensitive to ragweed.

How can allergies affect your family? The air in your home can become filled with irritants a number of ways. Let’s say it’s your turn to throw the post-game party for your kid’s soccer team, or you’re hosting a gameday get-together with friends. In these situations, lots of people are moving in and out of your home, bringing with them allergens, dirt, and dust. This can jeopardize the health of your home environment and make the fall season uncomfortable for your family.

Try out some simple steps to keep the air in your home fresh and breathable throughout the fall season.

Keep Allergens Out

Common fall allergens like ragweed, pollen, and mold can stick to your shoes and clothes, especially after you’ve done yard work or other outdoor activities. One fall wellness solution is to set up a space in your garage to keep shoes and jackets. If you don’t have a garage, try to keep them contained in the front closet, and make sure to change out of outdoor clothes before moving throughout your home. This can actually keep your home more clean year-round.

Clean Regularly

Dust is a nuisance any time of year, so it’s important to regularly sweep and vacuum all areas of the home to prevent asthma irritations.

Mold is an even bigger concern in the fall, especially if warmer temperatures linger and prevent the first freeze from killing off spores and other particles. Old piles of wet leaves can quickly lead to mold issues that can be brought into your home, and other damp outdoor conditions can seep into your basement. Use a dehumidifier if necessary, and don’t allow wet garments to sit for long periods of time.

Breathe Easy

Using an air purifier is a great way to keep your home healthy and improve fall wellness. Whole-home purifiers can remove allergens of all sizes (including ragweed, mold, dust, and more), and it’s all done in the background using your preexisting heating and cooling system. Plus, our air purifiers can be controlled and programmed with your phone through our Wi-Fi thermostats. This allows you to schedule air cleanings after you host an event or if allergy counts are particularly high, helping to keep your entire home environment consistently healthy.

Healthy Clean Air | Environment |

Fall Allergies: What They Are and How To Prevent Them

2 minute read

Most of us think of summer and spring when it comes to runny noses and itchy eyes. But along with all those changing colors, fall brings a set of its own allergies that you should be aware of.

Ragweed is the main allergy culprit during fall. These months are when the plants pollinate and send billions of pollen grains into the air, allowing the wind to transport them up to hundreds of miles, straight to your nose, of course.

Other sources of fall allergies include mold and other weeds like goldenrod, curly dock, sheep sorrel, and sagebrush. Areas east of the Rocky Mountains are especially susceptible to high pollen in the fall.

Use Heating and Cooling Systems

It can be tempting to open up all the windows in the fall, but that’s not the smartest way to regulate the temperature indoors. Open windows make it easy for allergens to build up on your furniture, your clothes, and in the air inside your home. So when the changing temperatures of fall make you too hot or too cold, rely on your heating and cooling systems to do what they do. And if you have an air filtration system, use it during peak allergy times. They will keep your house comfortable and reduce your allergy concerns, even if your energy bill will go up a bit.

Know When To Stay Inside

We all love being outdoors during the fall months, but all those changing colors and mild temperatures can impact our health. Fall allergens are at their peak between 5 and 10 a.m. and can be a major problem on windy days. If you need to be outside during that time and can’t avoid windy days, try wearing a face mask or other breathing filter.

Lingering warm weather can also impact your breathing, as it allows mold and pollen to survive and spread. Allergens don’t completely clear out until the first freeze of the year.

Take A Break From The Rake

Raking the yard can seem like an endless task, and it’s even worse for those who suffer from fall allergies. Leaves can hold onto allergens that then get lifted into the air during raking, which makes it easy for you to breathe them in. A simple fix is to hire a landscaping service or find someone in your neighborhood who will take care of the raking for you. Old leaves in your gutters can be an issue too—especially when it comes to mold—so have them cleaned out regularly.

Healthy Clean Air | Healthy Air |

Use Genuine Aprilaire Replacement Parts for Top Performance

2 minute read

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but knock-offs aren’t always on par with the original. We are the trusted leader in Indoor Air Quality and indoor air filters, and have been for the last 60 years. If you trust our products in your in home, it’s important to keep them running with Genuine Aprilarie Replacement Parts to ensure maximum performance.  Only Aprilaire replacement parts come with the Pure Fit Promise.

Why Use Genuine Replacement Parts?

Aprilaire humidifiers and air purifiers require an annual replacement of their water panel and air filter, respectively. These components and patented designs are the heart of the product. You may find filters and water panels in stores that claim to offer the same performance. But don’t trust your family’s health to anyone but the experts.

The benefits of using Genuine Aprilaire Replacement Parts:

Pure Fit Promise

Buying directly from Aprilaire, or from an Aprilaire professional, gives you confidence that you’re getting the right size filter and the performance-level you expect.

Patented Self-Seal Design

Genuine air filters from Aprilaire are designed with a super-tight seal between the filter and furnace. This is important because filters without this design allow air to travel under, around, and above the filter. To get the most out of your air purifier, you need to use the correct Aprilaire filter.

Clean Coil Guarantee

Aprilaire air purifiers come with an amazing clean coil guarantee, which ensures the cleanliness of your air conditioner coil and the performance of you HVAC system. However, because of the noted differences between Aprilaire and other brands, you must use genuine parts.

Protect Your Warranty

Our humidifiers and air purifiers have a 5-year warranty when they are installed by a professional contractor and the proper replacement parts are used. Protect your investment in Healthy Air by always using genuine Aprilaire parts.

As summer winds down and you get ready to have your HVAC system tuned up for the winter, make sure your contractor replaces your air filter with genuine parts. You can also purchase the correct replacement filters and water panels direct from Aprilaire.

Archive |

Ask Aprilaire: What Can Your Alexa Skill Do for You?

3 minute read

You’ve set up your Aprilaire Alexa skills, and you’re ready to bask in the glorious atmosphere of your home with your new pal Alexa. There’s just one problem: What do you two talk about?

Awkward…

That’s why we’ve put together some icebreakers to help you and your Aprilaire Alexa skills get acquainted. Check back often for more conversation starters as they’re added!

But before we begin, if you have an Aprilaire thermostat in your home, you’ll need to specify which thermostat you’re referencing by mentioning the name you chose for them – for example, “Upstairs” or “Downstairs.”

You can learn more about naming your thermostats here.

 Set Your Preferred Temperature

Alexa, set/turn/change <Thermostat Name> to XX degrees.

You know your home better than anyone else. Similarly, you know the temperature your family prefers in order to function properly throughout the year. All you need to do now is let Alexa know.

Alexa is able to maintain your Aprilaire thermostat for you year-round while you tend to more important matters around your home like getting the kids ready for school or paying the bills.

Set it and forget it with Alexa for a happier home environment.

INCREASE THE TEMPERATURE

Alexa, raise/increase <Thermostat Name> temperature by X degrees. 

No matter what climate you live in, winter months mean cooler weather. Because of this, there’s a good chance you’ll want to raise the temperature to offset the apparent tundra surrounding your home.

For that, there’s Alexa.

Just tell Alexa to raise or increase the temperature by however many degrees you’d prefer. She’ll be happy to help.

LOWER THE TEMPERATURE

Alexa, lower/decrease <Thermostat Name> temperature by X degrees.

Again, no matter the climate you live in, summer months mean warmer weather. Be sure to keep your home cool and drink plenty of water during summertime scorchers to prevent heat-induced injuries, and maintain a healthy home.

Thankfully, with Alexa, lowering your temperature requires very little physical action, allowing you to revel in the cool, refreshing breeze gently circulating throughout your home.

Just tell Alexa to lower or decrease the thermostat temperature by however many degrees you’d prefer. She’s here to help you keep your cool.

FIND OUT THE INDOOR TEMPERATURE

Alexa, what is <Thermostat Name> temperature? 

Curious what the temperature is in your home? Just ask! Sometimes outside weather conditions can shift dramatically, causing your indoor temperature to rise or drop.

Either way, Alexa is well aware of the temperate climate in your humble abode and can provide you with those details post haste. If you’re not happy with the temperature, see any of the above commands so that Alexa can help you reset your temperature.

AT WHAT TEMPERATURE IS THE THERMOSTAT CURRENTLY SET

Alexa, what is <Thermostat Name> temperature set to?

Did someone forget to adjust the thermostat when they came home? Or maybe the kids are playing around with the thermostat, again.  The setpoint of the thermostat dictates where the temperature is heading towards; thus incorrect settings can cause unnecessary energy usage and more expensive energy bills.
Alexa will let you know what the current set point is with this simple command and you can rest easy knowing you may have saved yourself a few bucks.

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Enable the Aprilaire Alexa skills on your Amazon Echo device today, and remember to keep checking back here for updated Alexa commands as we add them.

Healthy Home | Wellness |

Smart Devices For Health and Wellness

2 minute read

Staying healthy is something we all strive for. And making that effort easier is the goal of smart devices. These products range from fitness trackers to calorie monitors to comfort regulators. All of which make it easier for you to reach your health goals and know that you’re staying in control of your health and wellness.

Fitness Trackers

Movement is a part of health, no matter your age. While we all can’t be out scaling mountains or running marathons, it’s important to keep active on a consistent basic. One way to make sure you’re getting the activity level you need is to wear a fitness tracker. There are ones for your wrist, apps for your phone, and simple pedometers that clip onto your clothes. These devices can monitor things like steps, heart rate, sleep patterns, and even your weight by pairing with Wi-Fi scales.

Programmable Thermostats

Your home’s environment can have a major impact on the health of your entire family. Smart thermostats make it easy to get the perfect temperature and humidity level, and to schedule air cleanings if your home is equipped with an air purifier. That means your family can stay comfortable all year long, enjoying ideal temperatures for sleeping, fresh air during allergy season, and relief from extreme heat or cold outdoors. It’s all controlled from your phone or by using a smart personal assistant (like Amazon’s Alexa).

Adjustable Beds

You spend around one-third of your day in bed so it makes sense that it should be a place you feel comfortable. New technology allows you to adjust the firmness of your bed using an app. Some devices offer automatic adjustments that can change the temperature and firmness of your mattress based on the time of year, your workout schedule, and other factors you select.

Blood Pressure Monitors

It’s easier than ever to monitor our own health. Blood pressure readings went from the doctor’s office to the pharmacy, and now you can do them in the comfort of your own home. Smart blood pressure monitors track your readings over time, giving you a better idea of your overall health by showing trends and patterns. Plus, you can easily show the results to your doctor when you go into the clinic. Similar devices clip onto your finger and read things like your pulse, blood oxygen levels, and breathing rate. They send all the information to your smart phone for easy record keeping.

Archive |

Alexa Hacks for better Indoor Wellness and Efficiency

2 minute read

Alexa hacks for Aprilaire products

There are a number of Amazon Alexa skills out there that you can use to your advantage, creating a healthier, more efficient home for you and your family. Of course, none are more beneficial to Aprilaire customers than the actual Aprilaire Amazon Alexa skill. However, these Alexa hacks can create better indoor wellness and efficiency. 

Alexa Hacks

Alexa Hacks on Reminders

We live in a fast-paced world. Our reminders have reminders.Yet, if we’re honest with ourselves, it’s still possible for mental notes to fall through the cracks.

That’s what makes Alexa’s built-in reminders feature so handy. That’s said, you can use it to hack Alexa for better indoor wellness and efficiency for your home.

With Alexa, you can conversationally schedule reminders to replace your air filters or double-check indoor temperatures or humidity levels. Staying on top of these will ensure your indoor air quality is on point and your home is running efficiently.

Learn more about how to set indoor air quality reminders using Alexa’s native reminder skill.

As an added hack for iPhone users, you can use IFTTT to sync Alexa with iOS Reminders, allowing you to keep track of your reminders anytime, anywhere.

Alexa Hacks To-Do Lists

Take those reminders to a whole new level by simply including them on your Alexa to-do list.

If you want to add or remove tasks on your to-do list – winterize your A/C unit, change your filters, schedule routine maintenance, find local Aprilaire dealers to discuss new installations – just ask Alexa.

If you’d like, you could even consider using these as a sort of seasonal checklist. This is a great way to keep your home HVAC systems up-to-date, providing healthy, breathable air to you and your family year-round.

Again, to take this Alexa hack a step further, you can use IFTTT to email yourself your Alexa to-do list whenever you ask Alexa for updates. If you’re an Evernote user, you can also sync your Alexa to-do list with the productivity app, allowing you to take your to-do list wherever you go.

Alexa Hacks Weather

When it comes to indoor air quality in your home, outdoor weather unsurprisingly plays a very large role. Depending on the season, your location and your personal preferences, Alexa can help you discern whether the weather will have an effect on your day-to-day activities.

While this isn’t a “hack” per se, you can use Alexa’s built-in weather capabilities as a simple way to your home’s benefit.

Like to open your windows? Ask Alexa if it’s expected to rain or if it’s going to be too windy.

If you’d like to know about inclement weather, ask Alexa if it’s supposed to snow so you winterize your home.

Traveling? Ask Alexa for the weather forecast in your area before you leave.

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What hacks or other skills are you using to make the most of your Amazon Echo device at home?