You should never have to choose between staying warm or saving money. Your HVAC system accounts for as much as 50 percent of your total energy bill. That can add up to big bucks over the course of the entire year. Being smart with your HVAC system turns into being smart with your money. You can reduce your HVAC energy costs in simple ways with these HVAC energy saving tips.
HVAC Energy Saving Tips
- Energy Audit: Invest the time and money into having an energy audit done on your home or business to see where your energy is being wasted and how to increase the overall efficiency of your HVAC system.
- Routine Maintenance: If your system has to work harder due to dust, buildup, dirty filters, or clogged drains, it uses more energy and costs you more money. Routing maintenance ensures your system runs at optimum efficiency.
- Program Your Thermostat: Operate your HVAC system at optimum and stable temperatures to create the most efficient system. Program your system’s schedule around your own to create a timely and effective way to manage your system’s usage.
- Seal: Sealing your home from drafts can make a huge difference in your HVAC energy costs. All this takes is finding smart and safe ways to eliminate areas where hot air is escaping and cold air is finding its way inside.
- Insulate: Add more insulation where/when you can. Insulating the attic is a great place to start.
- Keep Out the Heat: In the summertime, use blinds and shades to keep direct sunlight and extra heat out of your home. This means you’re helping your air conditioner never work harder than it has to.
- Turn Off Ceiling Fans: Ceiling fans don’t cool the air, they only circulate it and make you feel cooler. Use them when you’re home to keep things comfortable, but turn them off when you leave the house.
- Run Appliances at Night: Things like your dishwasher and washing machine produce heat. If you run them at night after the temperature outside drops, your air conditioner doesn’t have to work so hard to keep things cool inside your home.
- Change Your Air Filters: Check them every month and replace them every 30-90 days to prevent dirt build-up and causing your system to be overworked.
- Use Space Heaters: Especially if you’re only using one area of your home in the winter, consider a space heater instead of heating your entire home.
- Upgrade: If you don’t currently have an energy efficient HVAC system, or your system is over 10 years old, it might be worth upgrading. The EPA estimates energy efficient systems can pay for themselves in a short period of time.
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New HVAC Systems: Getting Return on Your Investment
The best way to lower your HVAC electricity consumption and reduce your monthly bills is to replace an old unit with a new energy efficient model. Old units are power suckers and they can cost you hundreds more each month. The more modern systems pay for themselves quickly and continue to save homeowners money in the long run; the monthly drain on electricity, even in the summer, can be dramatic. New units are Energy Star certified for conservation, which means they will reduce your electricity usage considerably. For more information on Energy Star certified systems, talk to a professional today.
- Load Calculations: This is the first step in deciding what system is right for your home. Load calculations make sure you’re buying the right size system. A system that is too small is forced to work overtime, while a system that is too big will cost you more and increase your maintenance cost.
- Ratings: All energy-efficient models have a Seasonal HVAC Energy Efficiency Rating (SEER). This rating computes the energy efficiency of the equipment based on a seasonal average. The U.S. Department of Energy requires a minimum SEER of 13 for all new systems in the northern U.S. Even increasing your rating from a 10 to a 13 can make a huge difference in your bills. The latest systems have ratings between 20-28, these units can slash your energy consumption by as much as 30 percent.
- Smart Thermostats: These can be installed with or without an entirely new energy efficient HVAC system. A smart thermostat contains sensors that control the heating and cooling systems in your home. You have a myriad of options at your fingertips that aren’t available with a standard thermostat. For instance, you can program temperatures for different times of the day when you’re at home or away. You also have the ability to adjust temperatures from your smartphone. You can be across town for lunch and still take care of your thermostat at home.
Energy efficient HVAC systems are designed to promote comfort and save you money, all at the same time. Now you can maintain different heating and cooling needs within your home without worrying about what your monthly bill is going to look like. Regardless of the system you have, or the upgrades you make, maintaining your system with routine maintenance is the key to getting what you pay for and ensuring your system is providing the most efficient comfort levels possible. Connect with a local HVAC technician today and let us give you the tools to save you money.