How to Save Money on your Heating & Cooling Bills Without Being Uncomfortable in your Home
According to recent estimates, the average family in Canada spends more than a thousand dollars per year on electricity. A large percentage of this goes toward heating and cooling costs. Fortunately, there are a couple of easy ways in which people can keep these bills within reasonable limits. Keep reading to learn more about saving money on your heating and cooling bills without being uncomfortable in your home.
Do Not Set Your Thermostat Too High Or Too Low
Did you know that you can save up to 10% on cooling and heating costs by simply adjusting the thermostat when you are not at home or sleeping? During the winter months, throw on a sweater or another blanket instead of keeping the thermostat at the same level it was during the day. When you leave for work in the morning, remember to adjust the air conditioner or turn down the heat before you go. Even better, get a programmable thermostat to do it for you. Don’t turn things too high or too low, or your unit will be forced to work harder than it needs to.
Make Sure Your HVAC System Is The Right Size For Your Home
No single approach will suit all homes when it comes to cooling and heating systems. Some homes are better suited to a mini-split system, while others are ideal for a natural gas furnace. If you are buying an older home without AC, using an antiquated system, or you are thinking of upgrading your heating and cooling system, get a professional HVAC company to recommend the best size and type for your home.
They will start by measuring the total size of your home and the sizes and numbers of windows. They will also consider factors such as the amount of landscaping around the home, the orientation of the house, the insulation’s R-value, etc. A professional will help you make the best decision for your home.
Change Your HVAC Filter regularly
A dirty filter will cause your heating and air conditioning systems to work harder to heat or cool your home. That causes it to use more energy, resulting in higher energy bills. Changing the filter monthly (but at least every three months) will go a long way to keep your utility bills in check.
Try To Avoid Using Portable Heaters
Although a portable heater can be a great convenience if you only want to heat a specific room, running one or more of them every day will significantly drive up your electricity bill. Even a relatively small portable heater can use 2 kW of electricity per hour. That means 16 kW during 8 hours or nearly 500 kW a month. If your home is not warm enough, invite a licensed HVAC professional to inspect your system to find out why.
Keep Exterior Doors And Windows Closed & Sealed
Keep all exterior doors and windows closed to make sure your HVAC system runs smoothly and uses the least possible amount of energy. Most people will remember the doors, but it’s easy to forget the odd open window left open a crack. Also, to make sure air isn’t escaping, check that they are adequately sealed. If you’re not sure, light a candle and slowly move it around the perimeter of the window (be careful of curtains!). A flickering flame is a sign of a draft.
Cover Open Floors
While tile flooring is especially popular these days, it does have some drawbacks. An ice-cold tile floor can absorb a surprising amount of heat. If your home doesn’t have a lot of floor insulation, putting down a few rugs or carpets will help retain heat in winter. It will also create a warm, cozy ambiance.
Have Your HVAC System Regularly Maintained
A well-maintained HVAC system will serve you well for years. Having your unit inspected, cleaned and tuned up once a year will keep it running at its best. These efficiencies will add up in reduced utility bills, improved indoor air quality, and extend the lifespan of your heating and cooling system. Another great reason to have your unit maintained is its warranty. Some furnace warranties can be voided without proof of annual maintenance.
If you need to make sure your system is running its best, and keeping your heating and cooling bills as low as possible, schedule an HVAC maintenance appointment with Reliable Home Environment soon.