We can all benefit from saving a few bucks here and there. An easy way to do so is by making some energy-efficient changes in your home. Upgrading your HVAC system or putting in a smart thermostat, for example, gives you more control over your heating and cooling system, resulting in a more energy-efficient home and savings on your monthly energy bills.
Read on to read about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home changes.
1. Install a Smart Thermostat
If you still use a round-dial thermostat and access it manually, think about taking a step toward the future by installing a smart, or Wi-Fi, thermostat – which comes with several features to assist with energy efficiency.
The feature homeowners enjoy the most is having the ability to control their smart thermostats from anywhere they want by using their smartphone or other smart device. For example, in situations where you forget to use your thermostat before going on vacation, you can easily use your smartphone and make the necessary adjustment.
Similar to a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat enables you to schedule your home’s temperature according to the time of day and day of the week so you’re not cooling or heating an empty house. Smart thermostats also have the capability to watch your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient corrections. They also provide monthly energy reports that demonstrate how much energy you’re using and when so you can make adjustments to cut costs.
If you’re wanting to know how to secure a free smart thermostat, ask your utility company to find out if there are any discounts or free smart thermostats available.
2. HVAC Tune Ups
Regrettably, some homeowners often forget to have their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this might not seem important, ignoring maintenance can lead to a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan.
When performing an HVAC maintenance service, a heating and cooling technician should examine your HVAC system, clean key components, and catch minor issues before they lead to bigger, more expensive repair issues. Maintenance keeps HVAC systems working at optimal condition, which means they use less energy to heat and cool your home. This could also help with your energy bills, expand the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and contribute to fewer repairs.
We encourage two HVAC tune ups annually – one during the spring before summer and one in the fall before the arrival of frigid weather.
3. Replacing Your Worn-Down, Inefficient HVAC Equipment
Regretfully, like any appliance, HVAC systems have a shelf life and ultimately need to be replaced. Modern heaters and cooling systems are much more energy efficient than equipment manufactured just over 10 years ago. Luckily, local HVAC companies like Forster Heating can perform professional services such as furnace installation in Auburn.
Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can run for approximately 15-20 years. If your systems are within that period of time, it is often be a good idea to replace them now to avoid premature equipment failures that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your equipment is approaching 15 years old and requires an expensive repair, it’s usually time to replace it. Per the U.S. Department of Energy, getting a new HVAC system can sometimes save you approximately 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll recoup some of the costs of installing a new system.
A professional HVAC technician can help you identify the most energy efficient HVAC system for your needs. As a general rule of thumb, try to find HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, which means the equipment meets strict guidelines established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems are often some of the most efficient systems on the market, boasting both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is for heating systems and measures how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, in the meantime, is used to calculate the efficiency of air conditioning systems.
Contact a reputable HVAC provider like Forster Heating for air conditioning installation in Auburn.
4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters
If you’re shopping for new HVAC filters, remember that not all air filters are created equally. Some air filters are far more efficient than others, leading to lower energy bills and cleaner indoor air.
The effectiveness of HVAC air filters is scored by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges from 1-20; the higher the number, the more efficient the filters are. It’s worthwhile to note, however, that high-efficiency air filters can actually impede airflow too much according to the type of HVAC system you installed. It’s beneficial to read the owner’s manual before getting a filter to find the right one for your system.