December 17, 2017

Archives for April 2008

Get Maximum Energy Efficiency from Your Cooling System

The Air-Conditioning  and Refrigeration Institute (ARI) is the trade association representing manufacturers of more than 90 percent of the air conditioning and commercial refrigeration equipment installed in North America.  They offer their advice on how save money and energy while using your heat and air at home.

A typical home cooling system has two parts: an outdoor condensing unit and an indoor evaporating unit, usually near the furnace,” said Stephen Yurek, president of the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute, the trade association that independently certifies the efficiency of home heating and cooling equipment. “The outdoor and indoor units are designed to work together. When the air conditioner is properly matched with a furnace or air handler, you get maximum efficiency and longer system life.

“Manufacturers report that a growing number of homeowners are only replacing the broken unit of their two-part system,” said Yurek. “These unknowing homeowners are going to experience several major problems with their systems because new equipment has been designed differently to achieve the 30 percent increase in efficiency and to use the new refrigerants.”

It is important for homeowners to know that Jan. 23, 2006 marked the beginning of a new era in home comfort, when the new federal minimum efficiency standard for central air conditioners and heat pumps increased from 10 SEER to 13 SEER. SEER is short for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s a number similar to miles-per-gallon in automobiles, so the higher the SEER, the more efficient your system. A 13 SEER system is about 30 percent more efficient than a 10 SEER system. Consumers today can choose from a wide range of systems offering efficiency ranging from 13 SEER to 23 SEER.

According to AHRI, if the system’s two units are not properly matched, these major problems will occur:
· The system’s capacity to cool your home will be reduced and you will feel less comfortable
· Energy bills will increase due to reduced efficiency
· Reliability will suffer and compressor failure is more likely to occur
· You lose the opportunity to be eligible to receive a utility rebate or tax credit

Your best first step is to find a qualified and reputable contractor and get answers to these three important questions:

1. Will you be replacing the indoor coil with a new high-efficiency coil?
2. Does the new indoor coil properly match the outdoor unit manufacturer’s specifications for the system?
3. Can you verify the efficiency of the compressor or coil combination by showing me its certified SEER rating in the AHRI Directory of Certified Product Performance or by providing me with an AHRI Certificate of Certified Performance?

To help educate homeowners, AHRI offers a free brochure, “A Perfect Match: Replacing Your Central Air Conditioning or Heat Pump System.” The free brochure is available for consumers to download in the “Homeowners” section of the association’s Web site at www.ari.org.

Recall: DEWALT Table Saws Due to Laceration Hazard

Name of Product: DEWALT DW744 Jobsite Table Saws

Units: About 13,000

Manufacturer: DEWALT Industrial Tool Co., of Towson, Md.

Hazard: The pivot bracket on the saw can separate which can misalign the blade and the fence and cause kick back. This poses a laceration hazard to consumers.

Incidents/Injuries: DEWALT has received one reported incident of the table saw’s blade misaligning. No injuries have been reported.

Description: This recall involves the 10 inch DEWALT jobsite table saw model number DW744. Date codes included in the recall are 200715 through 200740. The table saws are yellow and black. The model number and date code are located on the name plate on the front of the saw. Table saws with an “X” stamped on the name plate by the date code are not included in this recall.

Sold at: Major home centers and hardware stores nationwide from April 2007 through January 2008 for about $500.

Manufactured in: Mexico

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled table saws and contact DEWALT for the location of a service center to obtain a free replacement table saw.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact DEWALT toll-free at (888) 742-9178 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s Web site at www.dewalt.com

Picture of Recalled Table Saw with location of model number and date code

KitchenAid”s New Retractable Down-Draft Vents

KitchenAid is adding to their retractable down vent line by including 30 and 36 inch widths in their Architect Series II design line. Retractable vents are installed flush to the countertop behind the cooktop, pop up for use and retract out of sight when not in use. Many homeowners look for this type of vent for island cooktop installations. The new motor design allows for more storage underneath the counter.

These models feature a higher 14 inch downdraft with an exhaust capacity ranging from 600 CFM (cubic feet per minute) with and internal blower, to 900CFM with an external blower that clears grease heat and odors out of the kitchen. Integrated electronic controls blend into the vent.

Suggested retail prices range from $699 to $959.

New Jenn-Air Trash Compactors

Jenn-Air offers a line of trash compactors that feature fully integrated doors for a sleek trash management solution in the areas where you entertain. The compactors have a Compress option that can reduce trash volume up to 80%. A comprehensive odor management system includes charcoal filters for an odor-free kitchen.

Available style options include: stainless, black and white and an overlay model that accepts custom panels along with oiled bronze and floating glass panels.

Features:

  • Compress Option Produces A 5:1 Compaction Ratio
  • Comprehensive Odor Management
  • Open/Start Pedal
  • Anti-Jam And Tilt Sensors
  • Drop-Down Side Drawer
  • 1.4 Cu. Ft. Drawer Capacity
  • 2-Point Drive System
  • Heavy-Duty Zinc Coated Frame And Drawer
  • Sound Insulation
  • Built-In Under Counter Installation Only
  • 2 Plastic Compactor Bags Included
  • Retail prices range from $549 to $999

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    Miele’s New Line of Ventilation

    Debuting in February 2008 were five new island and wall ventilation hoods that increase Miele’s product offering to more than 30 hoods.  The four 30” – 48” width units are available in classic stainless steel or may be custom ordered in over 200 colors for the ultimate in design customization. An impressive 70” wide, double chimney model DA 5341 D island hood comes in stainless and provides a double blower.

    “Miele ventilation hoods really do move air in style,” states Paul McCormack, Senior Marketing Manager for Miele, Inc. “Our newest ventilation hoods offer clean, simple lines that are so beautiful – they feel more like commissioned art, than functional appliances. In fact, each one is carefully crafted – almost entirely by hand – by the artisans working at Miele’s Arnsberg, German production facility.” 

    The five new styles range from 30” to 70” wide, including both island and wall installations. With over 200 RAL colors, designers can fully customize or simply stand out in stainless. All the hoods come with 4 speeds, centered controls, delayed shutdown (for either 5 or 15 minutes) and programmable filter timers that indicate when it’s time to wash the dishwasher-safe filters. Built-in smart technology alerts the vent hood if it is left on its most intensive level to automatically shut off in 10 minutes. Each wall hood may recirculate air as well as vent to the exterior, while the island hoods are vented-only. The new products also come complete with integrated halogen lighting (plus dimmer function) to provide a superior view of what’s underneath and to provide ambiance.

    Recall: Kyodo America LawnBott Lawn Mowers Due to Laceration Hazard

    Name of Product: LawnBott Lawn Mowers

    Units: About 530

    Importer: Kyodo America Industries Co. LTD., of Lawrenceville, Ga.

    Manufacturer: Zucchetti Centro Sistemi S.p.A., of Italy

    Hazard: The cutting blades continue to rotate when the mower is lifted from the ground and the spacing on the side of the lawn mower could allow room for a consumer’s foot to go beyond the shield and be struck by the blade. Both instances pose a serious laceration hazard to consumers.

    Incidents/Injuries: Kyodo America has received one report of a consumer lifting the mower from the ground and suffered minor lacerations from the moving blade.

    Description: This recall involves LawnBott lawn mowers with model numbers LB2000, LB2100, LB3000, and LB3200. The robotic lawn mowers freely and automatically cut grass by detecting the signal of a perimeter cable. The mowers have a docking station for recharging and a shiny plastic cover sold in red, green or blue. ”Evolution” or “deluxe” is printed on the side of the mower.

    Sold by: Kyodo America dealers nationwide from January 2006 through December 2007 for between $1,750 and $2,750.

    Manufactured in: Italy

    Remedy: Consumers should stop using the recalled LawnBott lawn mowers immediately and contact Kyodo America to register their lawn mowers for repairs that will be ready by the end of June. Consumers who have registered their mower with Kyodo America have been sent direct notification by mail.

    Consumer Contact: For more information, contact Kyodo America at (877) 465-9636 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s Web site at www.lawnbott.com

    Picture of Recalled LawnBott Lawn Mower

    Picture of Recalled LawnBott Lawn Mower

    KitchenAid Introduces First 30″ Five Burner Cooktop

    If you’ve been longing for an extra burner, but are short on counter space, KitchenAid offers their newest cooktop- a five burner that fits in a thirty inch space. Part of the new Architect Series II appliance collection, they will also be available in a thirty-six inch size if you have a bit more room to spare.
    Its features include full-width cast iron grates, sealed high-output BTU burners ranging from 20,000 BTUs to 7,000. Infinite heat control offer greater more accurate temperatures. Select models have a clear coat protection on the finish and can feature a Glass-TOuch display with a control lockout for safety.
    These cooktops are scheduled for availability in early summer, suggested retail prices will range from $1,199 to $1,649.

    Recall: Waxcessories Electric Simmer Pots Due to Risk of Fire and Shock

    Name of Product: Electric Simmer Pots

    Units: About 830,000

    Importer: Waxcessories® Inc., of Dracut, Mass.

    Hazard: The simmer pots have wire connections that can become loose, posing a risk of fire and electric shock to consumers.

    Incidents/Injuries: There have been 161 reports of discolored cords, loose wires, and wires separating from the pot. No injuries have been reported.

    Description: The electric simmer pots were sold in a variety of styles and were designed to melt scented wax in a ceramic cup. The cup sits on a ceramic base that contains a 40-watt bulb, socket and electric cord. The recall includes all designs of the electric simmer pots and all item numbers. The words “ELECTRIC SIMMER POT” and the design name are printed on the bar code label, which is located on the bottom of the base. For a complete list of individual item numbers and photos, visit the firm’s recall Web site at www.simmerpotrecall.com

    Sold at: Gift and novelty shops nationwide from April 2002 through April 2008 for between $17 and $25.

    Manufactured in: China

    Remedy: Consumers should stop using the simmer pots immediately and contact Waxcessories for instructions on receiving a free replacement product.

    Consumer Contact: For further information, call (800) 899-5884 between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the recall Web site at www.simmerpotrecall.com

    Picture of Recalled Electric Simmer Pot Label - The Product item number is located on the UPC label on the bottom of the electric simmer pot.

    Picture of Recalled Electric Simmer Pots - Sample photos of Waxcessories electric simmre pots.  Designs and colors will vary.