Home Appliance + Lighting Blog

Honest insights, opinions and resources about buying home appliances, lighting and plumbing

Venting Myths

by Steve Sheinkopf

When I was an appliance/lighting trainee, measuring a bath for ventilation was easy. Take the square feet of the bath and multiply it by 1.07 for the corresponding CFM equivalent. Supposedly this was an industry formula.

But, the formula doesn't work. First, bathrooms now have steams, specialty showers and multiple toilets. All of which creates more need for ventilation.

Also, the difference between a high and low CFM fan in price is minimal.

Have a look at a Panasonic bath fan.


There are plenty of decent fans, but Panasonic has the lowest sone or sound rating.

Green Tip: Buy a timer or moisture sensing switch, so the unit shuts off automatically.

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Topics: Lighting, Panasonic


by Steve Sheinkopf

I used to love the AC business. There were great brands like Sharp, Panasonic, Emerson(way back), Amana and Friedrich. They were all good and now they are all gone. The whole industry packed up and moved to China. Friedrich bought the Panasonic tooling, which was and probably is the best air conditioner.

So now you have very little real choice amongst Energystar units.

You can, however, still size it wrong. Oversizing an AC will actually freeze the unit and cause it to malfunction. That is the biggest problem in ACs.

I once designed a chart to assist people in choosing the optimum unit for their room. Remember each room is different: Exposure to sun, windows, shade and size are all important. In other words a third floor apartment is different from a garden or basement level.

AC Sizing

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Topics: Amana, Panasonic

Green is Good 2

by Steve Sheinkopf

So my trip was pretty interesting. The first part was through Budapest, which has become one of my favorite cities. Even if you only a couple of days, you can see truly memorable architecture and historical sites.

So I deplane(love that non word) and I noticed that it was unusually hot. In fact it was 42 degrees Celsius or 110 degrees American. When I ran at 6 in the morning it was 97 degrees in the shade....Unbelievable

After sweltering in Budapest for 4 days, I hiked the Dolomites also known as the Italian Alps. The Dolomites is like being in one of those viewfinders. You know...That toy we had as a child with the beautiful landscapes. Our guide was commenting in passing about the melting glaciers. Evidently, there were glaciers in the Italian Alps until a few years ago

Global warming is just that...Global. As I have said before, my goal is to show you how to buy green and save money. We do have the technology to change the environment today.

The following is the latest Green products.....Take a look

Panasonic FV30 bath fan. Bath fans are great for eliminating steam, but if left on, you could lose a houseful of ac or heat in a very short period of time. This fan operates on motion, so it will shut off automatically.

Panasonic Fan

Lutron Motion Controls. If everyone in this country shut off their lights when leaving the room, it would be a good start. This little device will do it for you.

Motion Sensor

Light Bulbs: There are many energystar bulbs in the market, but there are 2 really worth trying now. The candelabra 5 watt fluorescent is equivalent to a 25 watt bulb. The 18 watt flood is similar to a 75 watt bulb. Buy them with a 2800 K designation, so the quality of the light will be similar

CandelabraFlood Light
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Topics: Compact Fluorescent, Energy Tip, Panasonic

How to Buy.....An Air Conditioner

by Steve Sheinkopf

Buying an air conditioner was complicated at one time. Now it is easy, because manufacturers like Sharp, Panasonic, Friedrich and Emerson either have diminished offerings or have exited the category completely. Air conditioners are available in 5,000 to 36,000 BTU.

What you need to know:

EER: Measure of energy efficiency. Anything over 9.5 EER is considered decent and over 10 is excellent. The difference in .5 is 5% per cent

Slide out chassis: Acs with a slide out chassis can be built through a wall

Casement: There are special units for casement windows only

Controls: The better units have electronic or remote controls

Voltage: Bigger units over 16,000 require 220 volts, smaller units are 110 volt

Sizing of acs: The biggest mistake is oversizing acs. A larger unit does not dehumidify properly and the cold air will actually freeze the unit. There are several factors on how to size an air condition. First is the square footage and the height of the ceilings. Secondly, any additional heat sources need to be calculated: extra people, computers, stoves, and exposure of the sun. I have attached a good basic guide to assist.

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Topics: Slide-In Ranges, Panasonic

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Pricing on this blog is for reference only and may include time sensitive rebates. We make every attempt to provide accurate pricing at time of publishing.

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