We can all benefit from saving money here and there. One of the simplest ways to accomplish this is by improving energy efficiency around your home. Upgrading your HVAC equipment or putting in a smart thermostat, for example, offers more control over your HVAC system, resulting in a more energy-efficient home and lower monthly energy bills.
Keep reading to learn about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home improvements.
1. Install a Smart Thermostat
If you still use an older thermostat and control it manually, think about taking a step toward the future by installing a smart, or Wi-Fi, thermostat – which comes with a number of features to assist with energy efficiency.
The feature homeowners appreciate the most is having the ability to access their smart thermostats from wherever with their smartphone or other smart device. As an example, in situations where you forget to change your thermostat before going on vacation, you can simply take out your smartphone and make the adjustments.
Similar to a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat allows you to set up a schedule for your home’s temperature according to the time of day and day of the week so you’re not spending energy on an empty house. Smart thermostats also feature the capability to understand your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient corrections. They even provide monthly energy reports that illustrate how much energy you've used and when so you can make changes to reduce costs.
If you’re wondering how to get 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
Sadly, some homeowners often forget to have their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this does not seem important, a lack of maintenance can result in a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan.
During an HVAC maintenance service, your technician will evaluate your HVAC system, clean necessary components, and pinpoint minor problems before they lead to bigger, more expensive repair issues. Tune ups keep HVAC systems running in optimal condition, which means less energy is used to heat and cool your home. This could also reduce your energy bills, increase the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and lead to fewer repairs.
We encourage two HVAC tune ups every year – one in the spring before summer and again in the fall before the arrival of cold weather.
3. Getting rid of Your Old, Inefficient HVAC Equipment
Unfortunately, like all appliances, HVAC systems have a shelf life and ultimately need to be replaced. New heaters and cooling systems are much more effective than equipment manufactured just over a decade ago. Thankfully, local HVAC companies like Stieferman Heating Company Inc can handle professional services such as furnace installation in Jefferson City.
Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can live approximately 15-20 years. If your systems are within that span, it might be a good idea to replace them now to avoid premature equipment failure that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your HVAC system is around 15 years old and needs an expensive repair, it’s definitely time to replace the system. As reported by the U.S. Department of Energy, upgrading to a new HVAC system can sometimes save you between 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll recoup some of the costs of putting in a new system.
A professional heating and cooling technician can help you determine the most energy efficient HVAC system available. In general, seek out HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, meaning the equipment meets strict guidelines set forth by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems are some of the most efficient systems available, featuring both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is for heating systems and illustrates how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, on the other hand, is used to measure the energy efficiency of cooling systems.
Call a reputable HVAC provider like Stieferman Heating Company Inc for air conditioning installation in Jefferson City.
4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters
The next time you’re searching for new HVAC filters, keep in mind that not all air filters are capable of providing the same results. Certain air filters are far more efficient than others, resulting in lower energy bills and a cleaner home environment.
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 effective the filters are. It’s worthwhile to note, though, that high-efficiency air filters can sometimes obstruct airflow too much according to the type of HVAC system you own. It’s worthwhile to read the owner’s manual before getting a filter to determine the best option for your system.