Winter Energy Efficiency Tips for Your HVAC System
With winter on the way, you may be looking at your energy bills with dread. The freezing months often bring an increase in electricity or natural gas costs, depending on what fuel source you use to heat your home and hot water. But don’t worry—with a suitable approach, you can control your winter energy efficiency and save a pile of cash. Here’s how to fine-tune your climate control system to keep your home comfortable without draining your finances.
Schedule Fall Furnace Maintenance
Your HVAC system is like a car—it runs easier when well-maintained. Arranging annual preventative maintenance before winter arrives boosts your system’s efficiency and can save you up to 5% on energy costs. Beyond helping your HVAC equipment function more efficiently, this scheduled check can detect any lurking issues. Finding and repairing these problems early prevents disruptions during the heating season and more costly repair bills mid-season.
Upgrade Your Old Furnace
If your furnace is more than 10 years old and having problems, it could be the right time for an upgrade. Outdated systems can be a considerable financial burden, costing you more in energy and repairs than they’re worth. Replacing your furnace with a high-efficiency Energy Star®-certified unit can minimize your power expenses by as much as 40%. Plus, you’ll enjoy a more consistently cozy indoor environment when your heating equipment meets today’s standards.
Fine-Tune Your Thermostat
Remember those warm summer days when you programmed your thermostat to 78 degrees to save on cooling expenses? Well, that setting won’t do you any favors in colder months. Modify your thermostat for the season by adjusting it to 70 degrees or lower. Every degree you decrease the temperature can save you as much as 3% on your heating bill.
Even better, consider buying a smart programmable thermostat you can set and not think about. These Wi-Fi-enabled devices allow you to modify your home’s temperature remotely. The most advanced learning models make automatic adjustments based on your habits, helping you be cozy while saving electricity when you’re away or sleeping.
Change the Air Filter
The furnace air filter influences how efficiently your HVAC system runs. A dirty, blocked filter forces the HVAC system to work harder to circulate air, increasing energy consumption. To prevent this scenario, check the filter monthly and replace it every 1-3 months as an inexpensive and simple way to improve winter energy efficiency.
Assess Your Air Registers
The little details count. Occasionally dusting your supply and return registers cleans out hair, dirt and other blockages that restrict airflow. Once clean, make sure your curtains, rugs and furniture don’t block the vents. Maintaining an unobstructed path for warm air to circulate makes a substantial improvement in your home’s comfort and energy usage this winter.
Seal Leaks to Prevent Drafts in Your Home
Even small drafts can put excessive strain on your HVAC system. Perform a sweep of your home to locate and seal any air leaks. These are easiest to find on chilly, windy days that draw the heat out through gaps and cracks. Install weatherstripping and caulk around doors and windows, and apply spray foam around plumbing, vents and wiring penetrations to halt costly air leaks in their tracks.
Boost Insulation in Your Home
The attic is the easiest place to add insulation to a home. More insulation on the attic floor means reduced heat loss through the ceiling, making it easier for your HVAC system to maintain a cozy temperature. But insulation isn’t just for your attic—you can also insulate pipes, ductwork and electrical outlets on exterior walls to improve energy efficiency.
Think About Zoning
If your home has several floors or wings, you may gain advantages from setting up a zoned HVAC system. This involves putting dampers in the ductwork and installing multiple thermostats that allow you to independently control the temperature in various zones of your home. You could heat the ground floor during the day and the upstairs bedrooms at night, conserving energy by only paying to heat select parts of your home when you need them.
Select a Humidifier
Winter air is infamously dry. You might combat this with portable humidifiers throughout your living space, but there’s a more effective way. Use a whole-house humidifier to work in tandem with your furnace. Moist air feels warmer than dry air, so a whole-house humidifier promotes a cozier interior without cranking up the thermostat.
Work with Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing for Winter Prep in the U.S.
If you’re looking to boost your home’s winter energy efficiency in the U.S., Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing is available to help. Our ACE-certified technicians offer quick, durable solutions to all your comfort challenges, backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
If you’re not happy with our work, you can rely on us to make it right. Call 866-397-3787 today so the technicians at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing can make a significant difference in your life and sense of comfort this winter.
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