October 24, 2014

The Lonely Back Burner. Celebrate the Unsung Hero of Cooktops

P090109_JED4536_4large_jpeg_th_thYou know they are there…two or three smaller empty spaces on your stove or cooktops that go mostly unoccupied. Those larger, bigger, more powerful burners get all the credit, the overachieving front row. Isn’t it time you spread the love around? For too long, the back burners have been under rated. Sure, on big holidays they save the day keeping the gravy at the perfect temperature without clumping. Cooktops and the smaller burners are made to be used, and we mean for more than just heating up the tea kettle. For most of us, you use the small burners for the small saucepans, which are typically used to heat up soup, warm milk, melt butter or making rice. But, it can do oh so much more! Today, for the first time in a long time, celebrate the back row of burners! 

Why Cooktops Need the Small Burners

The simplest answer to that question is this: because of the cookware. In the most basic of cookware sets consumers will purchase, the standard items are the tiny, but mighty, 1-quart saucepan, 2-quart saucepan, the multi-purpose 5-quart stockpot, the 7″ fry pan and its big brother, the 9.5″ fry pan. Really, to effectively heat the larger saucepans or fry pans, a larger heating element is required on the cooktops.  For example, check out the Electrolux 30″ Drop-In Electric Cooktop. This model, the EI30EC45KB, has stainless steel trim and a smooth ceramic glass surface that is sleek in style and easy to clean. It has 4 elements including a powerful quick boil element that boils water faster when you need it and a Flex-2-Fit element that adjusts up to 3 sizes. The precise Express-Select electronic controls allow you to go from simmer to boil easily.

Be Part of the Counter Culture. Cooktops That Start a Cookware Revolution

cooktop electrolux home-tech appliances The cooking elements on these cooktops adjust up to three sizes, so the element fits the cookware, not the other way around. The lonely back burners again have a purpose! And, check this out, these cooktops from Electrolux have touch controls. Heat is controlled by just the touch of a finger, resulting in a clean look uncluttered by knobs or dials. These controls are intuitive, precise and very stylish.

Want to know more about cooktops, burners and other kitchen appliance options? Contact Home-Tech’s appliance experts. They can help you find the right kind of cooktop for your culinary needs as well as your budget. Shop online or in one of our Showrooms. Need more information, you can call Home-Tech at any time for expert advise at 800-800-8356. 

 

 

 

Community Connections. Home-Tech Supports Public Broadcasting & WGCU

PBS WGCU Home-Tech Community “My wife and I watch PBS every night and the one thing I noticed is that we NEVER push the mute button. And years ago, I saw a Lexus spot, and while I don’t remember the details, it made such an impression on me that I said to myself, ‘I want my company to come across with the same class as Lexus. So, I decided that we [Home-Tech], would become a sponsor. I have had customers tell me they appreciate our support of public broadcasting.  And if we don’t support it, it may not be here for all of us to enjoy.”

- Steve Marino, President and CEO of Home-Tech

Click Here to see Steve’s PBS Testimonial Video.

More About Community Support for WGCU

Home-Tech is proud to be a community business partner of WGCU, PBS and NPR.  The programming these stations provide are more than news and  more than entertainment, they provide a voice for our local communities.  While Sesame Street and Antiques Roadshow may be your first thoughts when it comes to public broadcasting, to Home-Tech it represents local jobs and a long lasting tradition of excellence in programming. So, when Home-Tech aligns with WGCU it is because of the class and excellence of their network,  and the extraordinary opportunities that public broadcasting represents and provides to our local communities.

Your Community AC and Appliance Experts

While we support our community, we do hope that the community will support us in return by calling Home-Tech when you need an appliance or air conditioning repair.  We serve all of Lee, Collier, Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties and can even provide emergency repair service when you need it most. Nothing means more to us than supporting the communities where we live and work, and if we can get the word out through an organization like WGCU, even better. Have questions about a repair, call us anytime at 800-800-8356. 

 

Air Conditioning Tech Rep. Promoted. Jonathan Hayo Named HVAC Manager

Jon Hayo HVAC Manager Air Conditioning HomeTechHome-Tech, Southwest Florida’s residential air conditioning, appliance service and sales leader, promoted Jonathan Hayo to HVAC Manager of the company’s Bradenton location. Jon will be the direct supervisor for the air conditioning technicians and sales representatives in the Sarasota and Manatee county markets. As a Tech Rep for the company, Jon successfully increased sales and grew visibility for the company in the northern counties.

Hayo was instrumental in the growth of Home-Tech’s northern territories and he played an important role in the grand opening of Home-Tech’s Bradenton location. He brings more than 36 years of air conditioning and sales experience. Jon has been with Home-Tech since 2011.

 

 

Best of Air Conditioning – 2013 Best AC Systems for Southwest Florida

air conditioning ac hvac best of 2013 hometechWe’re just past going into hottest time of the year in Southwest Florida and Home-Tech, the leader in installation, service and Service Agreements is here to help our customers with their air conditioning needs.  It’s time to share the facts and our recommendations on the best air conditioning systems on the market for this year. It is never easy when researching a major purchase, like an air conditioning system, to really know what you are getting.  While there are many options and brands to chose from, there are five systems that really stand out. Home-Tech’s air conditioning experts have done the research for you. You can trust our selections, as our criteria for selecting these AC systems are based upon price, performance, warranty and durability.

Amana 18 Seer Air Conditioning System – ASXC18

The ASXC18 is a popular selection because it is a best value when considering price and warranty coverage. This air conditioning unit provides high-efficiency, outstanding performance and quiet operation. In addition, it’s reliable operation and outstanding features add up to premium indoor comfort. Amana’s premium warranty protection includes a lifetime unit replacement limited warranty as well as a 10-year parts limited warranty.

Carrier Infinity 21 Central Air Conditioner – 24ANB1

Home-Tech’s air conditioning experts consider this Carrier to be the most technologically advanced and the highest performer in its class.  It is the “Corvette” of the bunch.  Not only was the Infinity 21 pinned as  the Most Efficient in 2012 by Energy Star, but it was also named by Consumer’s Digest as a Best Buy® winner. By far, this system does the best job removing humidity in the home thanks to the two-stage scroll compressor.

home-tech air condition ac trane 2013

Photo Courtesy of Trane

Trane XL20i - 4TTZ0024A

Trane air conditioning systems have a reputation of lasting the longest and being built the toughest. Their slogan, “It’s Hard to Stop a Trane,” is true, these units hold up for a very long time. The Home-Tech AC team refers to the XL20i as the  ”F150 of the AC industry.” This dual-compressor unit has an exclusive compressor for milder weather and a second, larger compressor for hot days. Trane’s patented Comfort-R™ provides greater humidity control in cooling by running the fan at a slower speed during start-up.

Bryant Preferrred Series Air Conditioning System – 126B

Bryant,  a sub-brand of Carrier, is a more economical option to save consumers some lettuce. Bryant is the “Toyota,” always reliable, doesn’t have many problems and will last for a very long time. This is the air conditioning system your neighbor and most of the people on your block will have. The Bryant 126B  is a great, sturdy and long-lasting AC system and that is why we highly recommend it.

Maytag iQ Drive – PSA4BI – 24.5 SEER

When it comes to efficiency, theMaytag PSA4BI is the industry’s elite.  This air conditioning system comes standard with a very strong warranty and it is made of stainless steel. Do you like a system that is extremely quite? The iQ drive puts out a quiet 59 decibals. This system was also awarded a Consumer Digest’s Best Buy®  and rated Most Energy Efficient design in 2012 by Energy Star. Thanks to its energy efficiency and high-end comfort features, this air conditioner qualifies for the Maytag ecoLogic™ green seal.

 Your Southwest Florida AC Experts

Have questions about the right air conditioning system for your home? While this list is an excellent start, every home is different. Make sure you research the system you may purchase, and double check that the AC company you hire is NATE certified, like Home-Tech. A new air conditioning system is no good unless it is properly installed, balanced and is the proper SEER for the size of your home. Don’t just call anyone, call Home-Tech to learn about our air conditioning options at 800-800-8356.

2013 Top Kitchen Trends: Accessorizing Appliances with Color

 

appliances viking d3 colors range

Photo Courtesy of Viking

We know style is significant when it comes to the most important room in the house, the kitchen. But, as we all know some trends come and go, but for the most part, your appliances will stay the same. So why not go for the look you’ve always wanted? Did you know consumers have 24 color options when choosing their Viking appliances. Most recently, they added Cinnamon, Dijon, Kettle Black and Wasabi to their palette of color options. 

Our friends at Viking had this to say about the wide range of colors available for their appliances. “The addition of these finishes will give consumers, architects and designers more options to coordinate with personal tastes,” said Brent Bailey, Director – Industrial Design, Viking Range Corporation. He continues, “These new colors reflect in-depth research into color trends for the foreseeable future, while also paying homage to our culinary heritage.” The existing Viking color finishes available for appliances are: Stainless Steel, Black, White, Graphite Gray, Stone Gray, Taupe, Biscuit, Cotton White, Sage, Mint Julep, Sea Glass, Iridescent Blue, Viking Blue, Cobalt Blue, Lemonade, Racing Red, Apple Red, Burgundy, Plum, and Chocolate. Now consumers have 24 color options when choosing their Viking appliances.

An Expert Opinion on Appliances of Colorappliances color

Home-Tech relies upon our dear friend and ASID accredited designer, Keffie Lancaster of Lancaster Interior Design to provide her expert opinion on this re-emerging trend. ” Personally, I really like the Bamboo colored finish as it is fresh and reminds me of a spa.  My clients seem to really like the Kettle Black, as well as the Stone Gray. The sleekness of these finishes offer a great deal of variety for placement in traditional and contemporary designs. The variety of the finishes allows for the ultimate in kitchen customization!”

Keffie also discussed Viking D3′s knob and handle options for the appliances in this line. “The Viking D3 line is not only amazing but fun too! The fact that you can have custom colored handles is a great design element that has been overlooked for years by the appliance industry.  I love the natural wood finishes which help the integration of contemporary designed appliances to juxtapose with traditional kitchen cabinets.  The possibilities are endless!  You can pop the wall color, the backsplash glass tile color or your floor color….whatever makes you happy….and let’s face it! Shouldn’t you be happy in the kitchen?”

Quality is Always in Style

There are so many great things about a Viking D3 kitchen. Not only does is suit your cooking style, it also fits your kitchen style. Come into a Home-Tech Showroom to see their full appliance packages in all of their gorgeous splendor. Packaging pricing is available, and as always, it comes with Viking’s 3 year signature warranty. And, keep in mind, that Home-Tech is always here for you for expert appliance repair. To learn more about the Viking D3 or other appliances, give us a call at 800-800-8356 to speak with an appliance expert. 

 

Women In Management: An Interview with Regional Service Agreement Manager, Sheryl Stahl

service agreement home-tech managementName: Sheryl Stahl

Position: Regional Service Agreement Manager, from Collier to Manatee County.

How many years have you been a Home-Tech employee? 25 years

What other positions have you held? Office Manager

What gives you the greatest satisfaction?

Offering our customers a great product and seeing them renew year after year. We have many long term customers that have been with us for over 20 years.

What is unique about the Service Agreement Department?

The product itself is very unique and ever changing, which keeps it interesting and challenging.

What is your unique approach to being a successful manager?

Hiring great people, bringing out the best talent in them and then watching them soar. Let them be the best they can be. But, you also have to challenge them to do more than what they think they can do.

What is the future for Service Agreements?

Growth, growth, growth.

Home-Tech is a very woman-friendly organization, don’t you agree?

Yes! I don’t think there are many companies locally that have as many female managers as Home-Tech. Home-Tech watches newer people, and we recognize talent. We nurture them, and allow them to grow.

What is your favorite saying? 

My all time favorite quote is, “Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.”  I read it in a poetry book in high school.

What is your organization style?

I am a mental organizer. I have my whole day planned out before I ever get to the office. However, my day gets interrupted all day long. So my day doesn’t always go as planned.

What is the best piece of advise you have ever received?

Don’t oversell your point. Make your point and let it go.

What are your interests outside the walls of Home-Tech?

My 5 beautiful grandchildren. I spend most of my free time with them.

 

Are You Smarter than Your Air Conditioner? Take the Indoor Air Quality Quiz

quiz indoor air quality air conditioner hometechYou think you’re so smart, don’t you? Well, Home-Tech would love to challenge your air conditioning and indoor air quality knowledge. As southwest Florida’s air conditioning and appliance experts, we take indoor air quality very seriously. Your health and the health of your household is extremely important to us. Did you know that EPA studies indicate that indoor levels of many pollutants may be 2-5 times, and occasionally more than 100 times, higher than outdoor levels?  If you already know this, then this quiz may be a breeze, if not, put your thinking caps on and let the games begin. 

Pencils Ready? It’s Indoor Air Quality Awareness Quiz Time

PLEASE CHECK ALL THAT APPLY TO YOU OR YOUR HOUSEHOLD.

___No one in my house has allergies

___No one in my house has asthma

___No one in my house gets frequent colds and sore throats

* Did You Know: More than 15 million Americans have asthma and more than 28 million suffer from hay fever and other allergies, conditions that may be aggravated by airborne particles such as dust, pet dander and pollen. And according to a study by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, indoor air contaminants are responsible for more than half of all illnesses. 

___ No one in my house smokes

___ I do not have an indoor pet

* Did You Know: Tobacco smoke actually contains over 4,000 compounds, many of which are strong irritants. And most homes built after 1979 have tighter insulation that helps to trap irritants such as tobacco smoke and pet dander indoors.

___I never have a sink full of dirty dishes

___I never have tables or countertops that haven’t been wiped clean

___I don’t have any food stored in unsealed containers

___All of my trash cans are sealed or covered

___My carpets are always freshly vacuumed

___None of my bathtubs and other surfaces have any mold or mildew

___I have no sheets that need washing

*Did You Know: Even the cleanest homes can allow indoor pollutants to flourish. Typical household activities such as cooking, cleaning and redecorating can spread indoor air pollutants.

Scoring: Add up the number of check marks to determine your IAQ (indoor air quality) awareness:

Pollen Air Conditioning Trane Home-Tech

Photo courtesy of Trane

8-12 = Your IAQ is okay. While you may have already taken important steps to improve the quality of the air in your home, there are still particles and allergens that exist at microscopic levels that can make indoor air irritating.

3-7 = Your IAQ could be better. While you are doing well in some IAQ areas, you may need to be more diligent in removing contaminants from your home.

1-2 = Your IAQ is a challenge. It’s time to get serious about taking steps to improve your indoor air quality. Schedule a consultation with an indoor air quality professional or visit Home-Tech.com to learn about Trane’s CleanEffects System.

Your Indoor Air Quality Coaches

Be smart about your health and start by improving your indoor air quality. Get those test scores up with help from Home-Tech. We provide the best indoor air quality products for your air conditioning system. Call us today to schedule an appointment with a Home-Tech Comfort Specialist at 800-800-8356. 

 

A Two Timer. Customers Applaud Air Conditioning & Electrical Repairs

air conditioning repairThis past week, we were lucky enough to have Home-Tech at our home twice. I recently received a phone call from Home-Tech reminding me that we had not scheduled our annual Clean and Check air conditioning service. The call also reminded me of some electrical work that needed to be completed. With one call from Home-Tech, they scheduled both appointments.

Home-Tech’s Matt K. came to do our yearly check of our air conditioning and heating last week. He arrived within the time frame that was given to us when we scheduled the  air conditioning maintenance appointment. Matt checked everything and decided to use a shop vac to clean out the drain line. He was very careful with our drain line, as some of the piping on it is pretty old. We appreciated Matt’s honesty when he told us that everything was functioning well with our aging system, but he did see some rust on the air conditioning unit. He suggested that we consider replacing the unit sometime in the future. We were very pleased with Matt’s service. 

Our second positive Home-Tech experience was with electrician, Stephen P., and we can’t say enough about the work he completed. Steve was working up on our very hot attic, straightening out some dangerous wiring that was done before we purchased this house. He was so careful and made sure everything was working perfectly before he left. What really stood out about Steve’s repair performance was the amount of background work and research he conducted before completing the work. We certainly appreciate the extra work that Steve and Home-Tech put in for us.

- J. Johnson, Cape Coral, FL

Sweet Appliance Packages. Cook Up Valentine’s Day Dinner in Style.

appliance packages kitchen hometechThere you two are, standing in this gorgeous, shimmering stainless steel kitchen with wine glasses in hand. The smell of roasted duck is wafting in the air as you feed your Valentine a crisp piece of bruschetta with ricotta, honey and lemon on it. It’s perfect. Your dessert is already chilling in your spacious refrigerator. The tablet is set, the candles are lit and you think to yourself, yes, this is the perfect Valentine’s Day dinner.

Can’t you just see it now? Now, imagine trying to prepare all of this in the kitchen you have right now. Depressing, isn’t it? Well, its time to make that dream a reality, and Home-Tech can help by showing you the best kitchen appliance packages, with the best rebates right now. Both KitchenAid and Bosch have beautiful stainless steel packages available, at affordable prices. The three hottest packages are: KitchenAid’s Standard 4 Piece Stainless Steel package, the upgraded 4 Piece Kitchenaid Package featuring Induction Cooking, or the 5 Piece Bosch Package featuring Double Wall Ovens and Glass cooktop. 

A Romantic Start to a Culinary Love Affair

  • Kitchenaid Superba French Door Refrigerator Stainless
  • Kitchenaid Superba EQ Integrated Dishwasher Stainless
  • Kitchenaid Stainless Smoothtop Convection Range Freestanding
  • Kitchenaid Stainless OTR Microwave

Our first package is nothing short of hot and steamy. Keep your chocolate at just the right temperature in a Standard-Depth French Door 29 Cu. Ft. 36-Inch Width Architect® Series II, (KFIS29BBMS). And after dinner, focus on more important things, like your Valentine, and let your Superba® Series Dishwasher with 4 Cycles and 6 Options - (KUDS30IXSS) do all the work. With this package, your Valentine will think you are smart and sexy because this appliance package qualifies for a mail in rebate up to $1,000!

Kitchen Packages for the More Decadent Valentine

  • Kitchenaid Professional French Door Refrigerator 29 cubic ft.
  • Kitchenaid EQ Fully Integrated Dishwasher
  • Kitchenaid Freestanding Smoothtop Induction Range
  • Kitchenaid OTR Premium Microwave with Hidden Vent

You know your Valentine will love that roast duck you’ve prepared for her on the KitchenAid Freestanding Architect® Series II Induction Range with True Convection Oven Even-Heat™ (KIRS608BSS). Imagine what else you and your Valentine could cook up with a range like this. As an additional delight, the warming drawer has a slow cook function that performs like a crockpot. These beautiful appliance packages will never rival the beauty of your special someone, but you will save $722 when you purchase these appliances as a set.  And that is sexy!

Bold, Vivacious and Bosch

  • Stainless 800 Series French Door Refrigerator 
  • Stainless 800 Series Convection Double Wall Oven
  • Stainless 500 Series OTR Microwave
  • Stainless Integrated Bosch Acenta Dishwasher
  • Stainless/Black 500 Series 36″ Electric Smooth Cooktop Glass

Yeah, this is way better than a box of Whitman’s and gas station roses any day! This appliance package is like Moet White Star and Godiva, but better. Nothing shines like stainless (except a diamond, of course). Never before has cooking a Valentine’s meal felt more like a luxury than a chore because of the effectiveness and convenience of the Bosch 30″ Double Wall Oven 800 Series (HBL8650UC). With 14 specialized cooking modes, getting your gourmet meal to cook to perfection is now much easier. The added bonus of this package is the 15% rebate you receive from Bosch when you purchase 3 or more pieces of qualifying Bosch appliances! Talk about a gift that keeps on giving!

The Ultimate Gourmet Kitchen

Do you have a professional type kitchen in mind, but are on a home kitchen budget? Home-Tech’s appliance experts are available to assist you. We have the appliance brands you want and package deals you expect. Need us to measure? No problem. Call us anytime to set up your one-on-one consultation with a Home-Tech expert at 800-800-8356 or shop our online showroom day or night.

Women in Management at Home-Tech: An Interview with Kerri Bigelow

Customer Service Manager hometechName: Kerri Bigelow
Position: Customer Service Manager
How many years have you been a Home-Tech employee?  
On March 31st, it will be 5 years.
What other positions have you held here at Home-Tech or elsewhere?  
I have been a Customer Service Representative and the Assistant Dispatch Manager for Home-Tech. Previously, I was in management for Publix Supermarkets.
Tell us about the Customer Service Department. How difficult is it managing this department? 
Customer service is the “Front Line” of the company and can be very challenging at times, but we like to strive in making our customers “Home-Tech fans“. Not only do we take care of our customers, but we also complete invoicing, clear technician calls, and in some cases, share responsibilties with other departments.  Managing the Customer Service Department can be challenging, but that’s what keeps me on my toes.  I strive to implement policies and develop procedures to ensure constant customer service satisfaction.
What advice do you give to newer staff members of your department or Home-Tech in general? 
Our first priority is answering the phones and taking care of customers, above anything else.
What is your biggest pet peeve?
Dishonest people.
What is your personal motto or unique approach to being a successful manager? 
Self-confidence grows not from what you can do, but what you know you can do.
home-tech interview kerri bigelowWhat are your interests outside the walls of Home-Tech?  
Motorcycling, fishing with my boys, cooking and being with my dogs Deuce & Hope.
What is the best piece of advise you ever received? 
From my Mom: Be happy & LAUGH. Always have a jovial look on life and don’t be too serious.  (And if anyone knows me – that’s me!)
Tell us a secret? 
I grew up as a Navy brat. I always wanted to go into the Military, but my Dad said No!