How to Save Energy This Winter

How to Save Energy This Winter - Twin Cities MN

How to Save Energy This Winter 

If you’ve heard of the term “heat or eat,” you may also know that many people have a very real problem when temperatures are falling at this time of year. Energy bills are known to rise this time of year, which can be a financial burden for some. The good news is that there are ways to keep your energy levels low. In the article, our HVAC company in Minneapolis, MN, shares how to save energy this winter.

Deal with Draughts 

Gaps in your doors, windows, and floors will let cool air in and warm air out. So consider mounting the drag excluders on your doors and windows. You may use an appropriate sealant, insulating strips, wooden beads, or even paper pieces. Rolled-up blankets make excellent draught excluders under your doors, too. 

Floors with holes and cracks are also responsible for heat loss, so check your floors carefully and consider getting any gaps sealed with a silicone-based sealant. Look out for other areas that can also be left in cold air. But never cover air vents, as the air vent may increase the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

In the meantime, if your windows are not double-glazed, it’s a good idea to close your curtains, blinds, or shutters when the sun sets-but leave them open throughout the day as the sun shines through your windows will help your room stay warm.

How to Save Energy This Winter - Twin Cities MN

 

 

 

Avoid Leaving Devices On

Try not to leave electrical equipment such as TVs, DVD players, laptop boxes, cell phone chargers, and other standby appliances. If they’re on standby, they’re still turned on, which means they’re wasting their resources instead of leaving them on standby, switching them off completely. Our friends at Specialized AV, a Norcal audio and video company, adds that there are plenty of smart home automation systems that will help you save time and money.

Insulate Your Home

There are substantial energy savings to be made if your home is well-insulated. For example, experts say that about a quarter of the heat from homes goes straight out of a roof with no proper insulation. You can insulate your roof, cavity walls, and even solid walls, and even place insulation under your floorboards, all of which can contribute to lower energy bills as well as a warmer home climate.

Depending on the type of water heater you have, you might also want to insulate your hot water tank and pipes, which will help keep your water cooler for a longer period of time. You can get relatively inexpensive foam tubes to cover the pipes between your hot water tank and the boiler.

Keep Heating Under Control

Installing a thermostat, timer, and thermostatic radiator valve can help you save also. This ensures that you can configure the timer to switch your heating on before you get up or before you get home, which saves more energy compared to turning your thermostat up to warm up your home instantly. Individual thermostat valves on your radiators will also give you control over which rooms you want to heat and which temperature you want to heat.

Bleeding your radiator might be helpful as well since trapped air in the radiators will make them hotter and less effective. Plus, try not to position the furniture directly in front of the radiators, as it might mean that the heat will be absorbed into the furniture rather than heat the air.

Our Minneapolis HVAC techs highly recommend smart heating controls. These are the latest technologies that help you monitor your heating remotely through your smart device.

Heat Check Twin Cities MN

Turn Your Thermostat Down

Reducing your room temperature by just 1° could reduce your heating bills by up to 10%. If you’re healthy and under 65, you can comfortably get your home cooler than 65°F if you’re relaxed. Otherwise, heat your home to at least 65°F.

You will also want to turn the thermostat down on your water heater tank, as it saves both water and power, so you don’t need too much cold water to keep the temperature of your bath or shower warm.

Switch to LED Bulbs

Replacing all of your light bulbs with energy-saving LED bulbs might be an expense, but it’s worth it. Many LED light-bulbs are rated life of up to 50,000 hours, which means that if you use them 12 hours a day, they will last more than 11 years. LED bulbs often use less energy than other bulbs.

An average household will spend $134, replacing all its LED bulbs. But that will save about $47 a year on expenses. So if you’re not replacing them for 11 years, you’re going to save a huge amount. Although LED is still a relatively new lighting technology, the prices have fallen. Find them in your nearest supermarket or DIY shop.

Often strive to get into the habit of turning off the lights when you don’t need them. Switching off the light for just a few seconds saves more energy than it takes for the light to start up again, no matter what sort of bulb you use. This will save you about $19 on your annual energy bill.

Service Your Home’s Boiler

If your Minneapolis home has gas or oil central heating, try to ensure that your boiler is serviced every year by a professional heating company in Minneapolis, MN. If, on the other hand, your boiler is getting old, it could be worth replacing it with a more powerful one that could save you money in the long run and keep your home warm. New boilers are expensive-usually around $3,000. 

If you’re concerned about how to save energy this winter, contact McQuillan Bros. One of our HVAC techs will examine your heating and cooling systems and plumbing to see if there are ways to improve. If you’re looking to save on HVAC repairs or plumbing repairs, check out our coupons and special offers

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Benefits of Energy Efficient HVAC Systems

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Benefits of Energy Efficient HVAC Systems

Energy efficiency is one of the most common requirements for many modern appliances. The less energy your appliance uses, the better. Your HVAC system is no different. It’s extremely important to have an energy-efficient HVAC system because it uses a lot of power throughout the year. 
Therefore, it makes sense that you want to find an HVAC system that uses less power and provides superior service. However, is it worth it? Below are some of the benefits of energy efficient HVAC systems.

Increases the Value of your House 

Are you planning to sell your house any time soon? Chances are it will worth a lot more if you have an energy-efficient HVAC system installed. Given the popularity of such systems, and the work required to install one in an old home, most home buyers will prefer one with an already installed energy-efficient HVAC system. 

Saves You Money 

This is perhaps the most important reason for getting an energy-efficient HVAC system for your house. You pay a lot of money to maintain the best ambient conditions inside your home every year. 
St. Paul HVAC contractors explain that an energy-efficient system is built to conserve as much energy as possible while still providing you with the best comfort. This includes features such as programmable thermostats that can be operated by your smartphone. They allow you to switch it on and off as needed without even being at home. 

 Good for the Environment 

We all have a role to play in the conservation of our environment. Energy-efficient HVAC systems are built with the environment in mind. They prevent energy loss and conserve as much as possible, which will ultimately lead to less fuel being used. Our friends at Gilmore Heating and Air, an HVAC company that offers air conditioning replacement in Sacramento, says it guarantees the longevity of available natural resources without, in any way, compromising your comfort. 

Comes with Extended Warranty Options 

Modern and energy-efficient HVAC systems usually come with extended warranties. This is a great money saver for many homeowners who are guaranteed that they won’t lose their money once the unit stops working. 

Increases the Quality of Air in Your Home 

A high-efficiency system will greatly improve the air quality in your home by using various features such as variable speed motors that maintain a consistent flow without using more energy. This way, the unit will have an easier time removing impurities from the air and creating the best living conditions for you and your family. 

Easy to Use and Quiet 

If you are tired of hearing your HVAC system run, then an energy-efficient one will solve this problem for you. Not only are they easy to use, but they are also quiet. Usually, these units are built using high tech noise-absorbing materials that remove the operating noise. 

Getting a High-Efficiency HVAC system installed

While there are many benefits of energy efficient HVAC systems, you won’t be able to enjoy these benefits without the help of a qualified HVAC technician. McQuillan Bros has been family-owned since 1833/offers you the best air conditioning replacement in St. Paul to ensure that you get the unit you deserve. Schedule a call with us today and get your seasonal furnace or boiler tune-up.

How to Get Your HVAC Unit Ready For Fall

How to Get Your HVAC Unit Ready For Fall - McQuillan Bros

How to Get Your HVAC Unit Ready For Fall

Are you wondering how to get your HVAC system ready for fall? As the hottest time of the year begins to get slightly cooler, you’ll want to ensure that your HVAC system is in its best condition during the fall season. Your HVAC system is one of the most important appliances in your Woodbury home. 
Don’t worry, our Woodbury HVAC contractors are here to help ensure that your HVAC system is running efficiently. Here Is how you can get your HVAC unit ready for fall. 

Change the Air Filter 

Your air filter is responsible for the clean air in your home. It filters air by trapping all impurities from outsides. It also prevents bacteria growth within the HVAC unit. 
Your air filter has a short lifespan and should be replaced every 30-90 days. Since the summer season requires that you use your HVAC system more, it is only natural that your air filter is covered with dirt and dust particles. Change the air filter every 30 days if you use it often. 
Gilmore Heating, Air, and Plumbing, a residential AC company in Placerville, agrees that maintaining a functional air filter ensures that your air remains clean and the rest of the system works smoothly. 

Update Your Thermostat Settings 

Your thermostat manages the heating and cooling of your house. If you are using an older model for a thermostat, it will help if you change it to a smart thermostat during your next air conditioning maintenance in Woodbury. These are usually programmable and can be managed through phone applications. 
This way, you can use it only when you need it. For example, With a smart thermostat, you can easily switch it off when you are not at home and back on right before you get to the house in order to create the right temperature conditions before you get there. 

Check Your Outdoor Landscaping 

Your outdoor landscaping affects the quality of the air you get with your HVAC unit, the amount of work it does, and the level of maintenance it will have to undergo after some time. Remember, half of your HVAC unit is positioned outside the house, where it will come into contact with your landscaping. 
Take some time and trim grass or shrubs growing around the unit. Give it some 2 feet of unobstructed space to allow the unit to operate without any problems. During your lawnmowing sessions, make sure not to direct the loose grass towards the HVAC system and clean out any fallen debris such as leaves and twigs away from around the unit. 

Check the Humidity Levels in Your House 

The humidity in your house influences how comfortable you and your family will feel. Too much of it, and you will get mold in your house. Your house will also feel dump. Too little of it and the air will feel dry. The best range for your humidity levels is between 30-50 percent 
One of the most recommended and easy ways to fix your humidity is to use a ceiling fan and the right ventilation. For bigger ventilation problems, a Woodbury HVAC contractor can suggest a humidifier and dehumidifier. 

Get Professional HVAC Maintenance

So, the best way to get your HVAC system ready for fall is to get a professional HVAC technician to perform proper maintenance. Contact McQuillan Bros for professional home maintenance services to keep your home comfortable throughout the year. 

What to Look for When Hiring an HVAC Company

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What to Look for When Hiring an HVAC Company in MN

Many homeowners take great pride in taking care of their home. There are always little projects or things to do around the house. Owning a home means that you’re responsible for maintaining and replacing any and all appliances, including your HVAC system. 
You’ll need to find the best HVAC company in Twin Peaks if you want to keep your house in order. HVAC companies are responsible for installations, repairs, and maintenance. So, what should you look for when hiring an HVAC company? Here are some of the things you need to consider when searching for the best HVAC company in Minneapolis

Efficiency 

Efficiency is one of the most important things to consider when hiring an HVAC company in MN. Your HVAC technician should be able to thoroughly serve you with high levels of efficiency and communication. 
In the event you need an air conditioning replacement, they should be able to provide you with the best AC units on the market. At McQuillan Bros, you will never be surprised. We will always be open and honest about our services and are happy to be of service.

Licensing and Experience 

A new HVAC system is not cheap, so it’s important to choose a well established and experienced HVAC company. Your HVAC contractor should be highly trained to install, repair, and carry out maintenance on all HVAC systems. Our friends at Gilmore Heating and Air, an HVAC company in Sacramento, recommends checking the licenses provided by your local company to makes sure they have experience handling HVAC systems. 
We’ve been serving the Minneapolis and St. Paul areas since 18833. We are known as Minnesota’s Original AC professionals. So, if you ever need an HVAC service in MN, you can always count on McQuillan Bros. 

Rebates and Special Offers 

Given the amount of money you are likely to spend throughout your HVAC system’s lifetime, it helps to know that you can get discounts every now and then. Your HVAC contractor should be able to offer rebates and special offers based on the energy efficiency of your HVAC system. This will go a long way in saving you money. You can always contact McQuillan Bros to learn about some of our HVAC special offers. 

References and Referrals 

The best way to determine if you have the best HVAC company in MN is by looking at references and referrals. Most homeowners are quick to refer the best technicians to their friends, families, co-workers, and neighbors. A highly recommended technician is more likely to deliver quality service. 
You can always search online for an HVAC company near me. There you will find the best HVAC companies in your area, and you can scroll through customer reviews. Facebook, Yelp, and Google My Business is one of the best places to read reviews. 

Finding the best HVAC Company in MN

There is a lot of work involved in keeping your HVAC system in its best condition. Working with trained professionals who value your time and provide quality services is essential. At McQuillan Bros, we are dedicated to providing you with the best services possible. Contact us today to learn more about what we can do for you. 

Energy Saving Tips for Your AC unit

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Energy Saving Tips for Your AC Unit

A well functioning AC unit is an essential part of enjoying the comfort of your house. You probably already know that running the AC all day long can cost a pretty penny. In this article, our St Paul air conditioning technicians share energy saving tips for your AC unit

Stay on Top of Your AC Maintenance

Many St. Paul homeowners undergo AC maintenance every quarter. Air conditioning maintenance is recommended because it helps prevent problems from arising and increases your unit’s lifespan. 
Any St. Paul air conditioning company will tell you that an old AC unit that goes without maintenance is more likely to drive up your energy bills. This is usually because the unit has to work twice as hard to produce cool air. Like a car, you must stay on top of maintenance if you don’t want it to break down. If your AC unit is making noises or your energy bills are higher than normal, contact the best AC company in St. Paul. Our HVAC technicians will assess the problem and find you the best solution. If it turns out that you need an air conditioning replacement, we’ll give you a free estimate so you can make an informed decision. 

Use a Fan 

Running your AC unit all day can be costly. You can cut down on the amount of energy spent by using a fan. A simple ceiling fan can reduce ambient temperatures inside your home by up to 10 degrees while only using 10% of the energy used by the AC. 
Currently, technology allows you to install a smart fan that can be operated through an app on your phone. This allows you to schedule their activity, set the speed, and eventually cut down on the amount of money you spend on your energy bills. 

Close the Blinds 

It might only seem natural to open up your windows when the temperatures get too hot. However, this only allows the sun to heat up your thermostat. A heated thermostat will keep your AC system on, which leads to more energy wastage. Closing the blinds and insulating your windows makes it easier to keep the sun out of your home and the cool air in. 

Place the Thermostat on the Right Wall 

Our friends at Gilmore Heating and Air, an air conditioning company in Placerville, agree that your thermostat’s location is important in determining how well your AC unit works. It allows the AC to come on when the temperatures rise and turn off when the temperatures reduce. Therefore, it is important for you to find a wall with the least interference for your thermostat. Place it away from any heat source such as the sun. If you need help relocating your thermostat or have any questions, you can always give McQuillan Bros a call!

Contact an HVAC Company in MN

Your AC unit is what makes the Minneapolis heatwaves a lot less hot. Therefore, it helps make sure that your AC unit is in its best condition. You can trust McQuillan Bros to provide you with the best HVAC service in St Paul, MN. Contact us today to learn more. 

Why You Need a Smart Thermostat This Winter

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Smart Thermostats Make Winter More Bearable 

As the holidays fade into the distance and Minnesotans go into winter hibernation mode, many of us break out the to-do lists and fill our time with indoor home projects like painting, redecorating or basement finishing. If this year’s to-do list includes updating your home to “smart” status, McQuillan Bros can help. Our professionally installed smart thermostats are simple to use, Wi-Fi enabled and designed to help minimize your home’s carbon footprint.

Five Benefits of Installing a Smart Thermostat

  • Smart control, at home or away. McQuillan Bros’ technicians provide training for your new, intuitive thermostat, which can be seamlessly paired with companion apps allowing precise temperature control from anywhere in the world. Designed with Wi-Fi sensors that work in conjunction with boilers or furnace systems, these next-generation devices give you the freedom to lower home temperatures when you are gone longer than expected—and raise them just in time for your return.
  • Smart savings, year-round. HVAC use accounts for a whopping half of a typical home energy budget! Along with weatherproofing, window upgrades and window coverings, a new Wi-Fi thermostat can help you defray winter heating costs. Thermostats like Nest learn your home’s heat-usage patterns, take upcoming weather into account and program themselves to keep you cozy while saving energy. You’ll start saving today when our heating and plumbing contractors in Minneapolis integrate your boiler, furnace or indoor air quality equipment with a Wi-Fi enabled thermostat.
  • Smart energy reports for a greener home. Smart thermostats track household energy use and pinpoint ways to save more over the long term. Customized reporting features are especially helpful for Minnesotans living sustainably and working to reduce their carbon footprint. (Watch for Nest’s little green leaf when you make an energy-saving temperature decision!)
  • Smart reminders for busy people. It’s tough to keep home maintenance at top of mind when you’re juggling meal prep, working from home or shuttling kids to extracurricular activities. McQuillan Bros’ professionally installed Wi-Fi thermostats simplify your life and safeguard your family by providing emergency notifications, dirty filter reminders and maintenance updates. Choose which notifications are most important to you on your thermostat’s companion app for desktop or device.
  • Smart, teachable interfaces. If you’ve owned a conventional programmable thermostat for a while, you probably agree that it is complicated to program and often more trouble than it’s worth. Nest, Honeywell, and other Wi-Fi thermostats are easily programmed. Even technophobes aren’t afraid of these thermostats, which have simple, modern screen designs and easy-to-use companion applications. Before long, your thermostat will learn your patterns and keep you comfortable—even when you forget to check it.

Schedule Smart Thermostat Installation Today

Whether your boiler, heat pump or HVAC system is a decade old or was just installed, today’s smart thermostats can be integrated to control your comfort while lowering energy use. Some Wi-Fi devices also can be used to control indoor air quality systems, humidifiers, and air filtration systems. To learn more about the benefits of Nest and other smart thermostats or to speak with our plumbing contractors in Minneapolis, call 651.237.5097 or connect online.
With over 13 decades’ experience serving Twin City homeowners, our experienced techs provide dependable plumbing and HVAC service with family-owned flair. For smart thermostat installation, heating repairs, 24/7 emergency service or boiler replacement in Minneapolis, McQuillan Bros is the team to trust when your winter comfort is on the line.

Is a Basement Finish on Your Summer To-Do List?

Start With Professional HVAC Planning

Winter months spent indoors, along with a surprisingly heavy April snowfall, have left many Minnesota residents with a long summer project list. For those afflicted with cabin fever, adding comfortable living space is a high priority. A basement home office, craft room or entertainment retreat adds value to any home and gives housebound families room to spread out when winter storms keep them inside.
An unfinished basement can be transformed into a beautiful living area for a fraction of the cost of a home addition. Handy homeowners can save even more—but only if smart planning eliminates expensive mistakes. Unfinished basements include ducts and appliances that are often difficult and expensive to move. Professional HVAC services ensure that your project progresses on budget, complies with safety codes and delivers comfort, year after year. Before work begins, savvy Twin City residents call on McQuillan Bros for basement heating, ventilation and air conditioning installation service in Minneapolis.

HVAC Problems to Avoid in a Basement Finish Project

Your plans for a finished basement may look stunning and include all the features on your wish list, but if the design skimps on utility or fails to meet code, moving forward could be a costly mistake. Before you rough-in rooms or install the first two-by-four, consult a reputable HVAC contractor like McQuillan Bros Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. Technical guidance from a certified professional safeguards your family and helps you avoid expensive problems in areas critical to project success, including: 

  • Placement & Condition of Current HVAC Equipment
    Existing HVAC equipment and ductwork should be inspected and repaired before construction begins. You’ll save money and avoid damage to flooring, ceilings and furniture if ducts are moved or a worn-out furnace is replaced early in the process.
  • Load Test & Supplemental HVAC
    A finished basement increases your home’s usable space, but it also increases the area that must be heated and cooled. An HVAC professional can determine if your current furnace and AC will operate efficiently with the new HVAC load. If your system falls short, you may need to replace it with a larger unit or add supplemental heating and cooling with a mini-split or high velocity heat pump.
  • Configuration of a Mechanical Room
    To maximize living space, you might be tempted to confine your home’s mechanical systems to an area with insufficient access and ventilation. Our friends at Gilmore Heating, Air, and Plumbing, an HVAC company that offers air conditioning repair services in Sacramento, adds that HVAC specialist makes sure mechanical installations meet code requirements, have adequate ventilation for safe operation and offer enough workspace to accommodate repair or replacement.
  • Indoor Air Quality
    Basements are notorious for dampness, mold and odors. Highly efficient indoor air quality (IAQ) systems balance humidity, eliminate odors and mold and cut down on allergy triggers. These systems can be added to new or existing HVAC units.

Consult McQuillan Bros for HVAC Services in a Basement Finish

As Minnesota’s Original plumbing, heating and AC company, McQuillan Bros was serving satisfied customers long before the advent of modern air conditioning. We are industry leaders at the forefront of our trade, and we’ve become the go-to HVAC team for room additions, finished basement spaces and air conditioning installation services in Minneapolis.
If creating a basement game room or home theater is in your summer plans, start with a comprehensive HVAC review from the McQuillan Bros’ team. We’ll cover all the indoor comfort bases, from load calculations to installation of zoned AC systems and IAQ equipment. Preserve your family’s safety and comfort with an air conditioning and heating system that is up to code and capable of handling the job. Call 651.237.5097 to schedule a basement HVAC evaluation or air conditioning repair service in Washington County.

Spring Plumbing & HVAC Tips

spring plumbing and HVAC tips - McQuillan Bros

Do These Tasks Now to Avoid Trouble Later

As spring waits anxiously in the wings, it’s time to clear out the dust bunnies, check for wintertime plumbing damage and prep your HVAC system for warmer weather. Some home maintenance tasks are perfect for do-it-yourself enthusiasts, while a trained and certified professional is the better choice for other jobs. When in doubt, call the best HVAC contractors in Saint Paul to request inspections and safety checks for your water heater, heating and cooling system, indoor air quality equipment and plumbing components.

Quick Tips for Maintaining HVAC & Plumbing Equipment

Chances are your home’s mechanical systems are showing signs of neglect after a long winter of pumping out heat and hot water. March is the ideal time to bring AC and plumbing systems up to snuff and to ensure they’re ready for a busy summer. Put these tasks on your to-do list—and be prepared to hire a seasoned professional when DIY projects aren’t your strength.

  • Inspect for leaks. After a Twin City winter, it’s wise to check the integrity of pipes and appliances. Boiler systems, pipes and water heaters can develop small leaks that impact system efficiency or major leaks that put homes at risk for water damage. Leaks aren’t always visible. Look for damp areas on flooring and drywall, and don’t allow musty or mildewy odors to go unchecked. Leaky boilers and pipes hidden by walls may make a hissing sound when air bubbles build. Cracked toilet seals can cause wood rot and mold growth in the subfloor. If you suspect any type of leak in your water heater or plumbing parts, shut off your home’s water supply and immediately call a plumbing repair service in Washington County, Hennepin County or Ramsey County.
  • Upgrade HVAC filters. Dirty filters slow down airflow and increase utility bills. Basic fiberglass replacement filters are the cheapest on the market, but it’s worth it to pay a bit more. Quality filters do a better job of safeguarding heating and cooling equipment and improving indoor air quality. Disposable electrostatic filters enhance IAQ by trapping tiny particles. High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters offer best-in-class filtration and are recommended for occupants with asthma and respiratory disorders.
  • Have boilers and water heaters inspected. You may be used to flushing your conventional water heater tank, but it’s a good idea to hire a professional to inspect the device’s temperature valve, water tank and electrical connections. Our friends at Tureks Plumbing Services, a plumbing company that offers water heater replacement in Appleton, WI, says tankless water heaters can develop scale buildup or have dirty water filters by the end of winter, impeding performance and reducing efficiency. Your plumbing technician will check for these types of issues and others during your Home Care Club maintenance checkup.
  • Drain sump pumps. Use a wet/dry vacuum or utility pump to suction standing water from submersible sump pump pits; then remove dirt, gravel and debris buildup. This simple act extends your sump pump’s life span and elevates efficiency during spring storms and runoff collection. McQuillan Bros’ five-star plumbing repair service in Washington County can address sump pump problems that go beyond these basic steps. The average sump pump life is 10 years, so aging devices should be inspected as they near the decade mark.

McQuillan Bros—Boiler Replacement Specialists

A failing air conditioner, boiler, or water heater puts a serious damper on summer fun—and may cause costly damage to your home. Savvy homeowners get their HVAC and plumbing inspections before warm weather arrives in the Twin City region. Prepare your Washington, Hennepin or Ramsey County home for spring’s arrival by joining our Home Care Club. Your membership quickly pays for itself and includes seasonal inspections, repair discounts and priority service when home mechanical systems go belly up.
Applauded by the most discerning homeowners for our high-caliber service, we’re Minnesota’s Original plumbing, heating and cooling company. Contact our HVAC contractors in Saint Paul and Minneapolis by dialing 651.237.5097. For your convenience, you can also request plumbing repair service in Washington County and beyond using this simple online form.