Monthly Archives: August 2017

Automate Your Home | Keith Air Conditioning

4 Smart Devices to Automate Your Home in 2017

Smart devices are designed to help homeowners run a more energy-efficient home without any extra hassle. If you’ve been thinking about upgrading devices to automate your Foley, Alabama, home this year, here are some of the best smart devices currently on the market.

Home Hubs

Home hubs like Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show are powered by Alexa, Amazon’s helpful voice assistant. These smart hubs can control just about every gadget in your house with the sound of your voice, as long as you take the time to set them up right. For example, Echo Dot can connect to a speaker to add Alexa’s voice command functionality. Certain models, like the Echo Show, feature a touch screen from which you can make video calls and view search results.

Other brands, such as the Wink Hub 2, work with your home’s Wi-Fi to control everything a smart home needs to run efficiently, including Bluetooth, Lutron Clear Connect, and Google Home. To date, the Wink Hub 2 is the most widely supported home hub on the market.

Smart Locks and Home Security Systems

Most of the big-name door lock companies offer smart home options, but none have achieved a reputation thus far quite like August. The Apple HomeKit-enabled smart lock is available for less than $200 and mounts over your existing deadbolt lock, making it easy for any homeowner to install. Once in place, it connects to your door and speaks to your mobile phone via Bluetooth. Thanks to smart locks like August, you and your guests can enjoy easy access to your home without fumbling for keys.

If you’d like a do-it-yourself approach to home security, check out the Abode Home Security Starter Kit. This handy system offers professional-quality monitoring solutions like smart light switches and door locks, plus it supports Amazon’s Alexa voice commands, making it a good choice if you already have the personal assistant hub.

Smart Thermostats

One of the best ways you can run a more energy-efficient home is with smart HVAC technology that streamlines your usage. Today’s smart thermostats feature built-in Wi-Fi that allows you to remotely control your home’s temperature from any mobile device, even from your work computer. Features like online runtime tracking allow you to note exactly where your dollars are being spent on energy, helping you modify your HVAC settings to boost your savings. In most cases, you’ll see results immediately.

But the benefits of smart thermostats don’t stop there. Control your home’s temperature settings for your pets when you’re away at work. Or, crank up the AC for your teenager who’s headed home from school early. Smart thermostats are also handy for when you’re away on vacation and need to monitor your home’s temperature settings. Did you forget to adjust the thermostat before you left for the beach? No problem! With a smart thermostat, you control your heating and air conditioning settings from anywhere there’s a Wi-Fi connection.

There are currently two types of smart thermostats on the market: one that automatically learns from your behavior and adjusts accordingly, such as being able to detect when someone’s home, and one that offers remote programming and management. Some models even fall into both categories. Once you’ve found the right smart thermostat for your needs, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

Robot Vacuums

One automation device that’s been around for several years is the robot vacuum. Fortunately, competing models have helped drive the price down to make them more affordable than ever, so if you haven’t splurged on one yet, 2017 might be the year to do so.

Robot vacuums are quiet, efficient cleaners with a host of abilities. Cheaper models cover the basics, such as cleaning your floors based on the schedule you program from the vacuum’s remote, while more expensive models connect to your home’s Wi-Fi, giving you total control at all times. Well-known brands like the Roomba even feature onboard cameras for navigation help, as well as smartphone apps that provide you with detailed cleaning reports.

Home automation is making it easier than ever to be an energy-efficient homeowner. Start making the switch today by contacting Keith Air Conditioning at 251-476-3610 to get started on your HVAC system upgrades.

Your Air Conditioner Goes Out | Keith Air Conditioning

3 Tips to Stay Cool if Your Air Conditioner Goes Out

Do you know what you would do if your air conditioner went out in your Loxley, Alabama, home on a hot summer day? Before you panic, here are a few tips that can help you stay cool while waiting to have your AC repaired.

Close the Windows

The first thing you should do after your air conditioner goes out is close all the windows, including the blinds and curtains. This is where blackout curtains can come in handy. The more light you can block, the less heat comes through, helping you keep rooms as cool as possible.

At night, however, if there’s a nice breeze and the temperature outside is cooler than inside your home, feel free to open a few windows to get some air circulating.

Turn on the Fans

Homes have ceiling fans for a reason, so take advantage of them. Ceiling fans produce a windchill effect on the skin that makes it feel like the temperature in the room is cooler than it actually is. Now would also be the time to break out any box fans. Position them in such a way that they blow directly on you, and consider putting a pan of ice in front of the fan to create super-cool air. Just be sure to turn them off when you leave the room, since there’s no benefit in running the fans when you’re not present.


To keep your body temperature down, drink plenty of cool water. You may be tempted to kick back a few cold ones or enjoy a refreshing glass of soda, but alcohol and caffeine will only make you feel dehydrated when you’re struggling to stay cool. You can also help hydrate your body by jumping in a cool shower, which can help you feel chilled long after stepping back out again.

While these tips are certainly helpful, you can avoid the problem altogether by adhering to your annual HVAC maintenance schedule. Contact Keith Air Conditioning at 251-476-3610 to schedule your next appointment.


Buying a New Air Conditioner | Keith Air Conditioning

Follow These 3 Tips When Buying a New Air Conditioner

Are you considering a new air conditioner for your Orange Beach, Alabama, home? This is a major upgrade that requires plenty of thought and consideration. Research your options carefully to make sure you understand your needs and can choose the best air conditioner possible.

Schedule a Manual J Calculation

It’s important to choose an air conditioner that’s properly sized for your home. If the unit is too large, it will cycle on and off often, sucking up too much energy. An air conditioner that’s too small may run continuously without ever delivering the cooling you really want. Both situations create excessive wear on your system.

To determine the best size for your new unit, you need to determine your home’s cooling load. Don’t trust a contractor who uses “rule of thumb” calculations that rely solely on square footage. Instead, ask about Manual J calculations. These provide you with a more accurate load calculation so you can choose the right system for your home.

Check SEER Ratings

The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER, rating on an air conditioner tells you how efficient the unit is. The higher the SEER rating, the less energy it will use. Today’s systems must have a SEER of at least 13. Look for the highest SEER rating you can fit into your budget.

Consider Your Comfort Needs

A new air conditioner is just one of many appliances you can turn to for enhanced home comfort. While you’re upgrading your AC unit, you may want to consider other products as well. A whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier fits in your central HVAC system to help you manage humidity levels as easily as you manage the temperature. An air cleaner offers advanced filtration. There are many indoor air quality products you can add to your system.

If you’re looking for a new air conditioning system, we can help. Call Keith Air Conditioning, Inc. at 251-476-3610 to learn more about the best AC units on the market for your needs.