The cold winter months have finally arrived, and if you are like me, you’re already dreading the hikes in your utility bills that will come with them. Luckily, there are plenty of small steps you can take to reduce your HVAC heating usage this season, which will make it easier on your wallet and help it function efficiently. Here are seven heating and cooling tips for heating your home warm this winter while saving money and energy.
1. Clean Those Vents!
When vacuuming the house, don’t forget to clean the vents as well. This will prevent the vents from becoming clogged with dust and dirt, the unit will function more than necessary, and warm air will not enter the living space effectively. Keeping the vents clean promotes good air quality by preventing dust and pathogens from getting into the air.
2. Change Filters Regularly
It is essential to check the air filters regularly and replace them when they get dirty. This prevents allergen build-up in the system. As a bonus, it will help keep heating and cooling costs down. Change filters every month or two during peak seasons like fall and spring, or whenever you notice a drop in home comfort levels during those months. Also, with pets at home, the filters need to be checked for any fur build-up. A clogged air filter restricts airflow, which lowers your system’s efficiency.
3. Check Insulation
When having trouble heating your home, it may be a sign for more insulation. Get inside the attic and crawl space areas and inspect for heat loss. If you see any gaps or holes in your existing insulation, get some spray foam to fill them in. Check for cold air leaks coming from doors, windows, vents, and pipes—the easiest ways to fix these are by caulking or weather-stripping as needed. If there are any other issues with your insulation, such as rotted wood and crumbling ceiling tiles, then it’s time to hire an HVAC contractor to check out what needs replacing before you freeze!
4. Turn Down the Heat (If You Have Central Heat)
Just because you’re used to 70-degree, doesn’t mean it needs to be set at that temperature. Lowering the thermostat by 10 degrees during those chillier months will reduce energy costs while keeping the home warm enough. If you have a programmable thermostat, make sure it kicks on and off at appropriate times so that no heat is being wasted when no one is in the room or home.
5. Protect those Outdoor Units
If it is going to snow, consider creating a cover for outdoor units. You don’t want to fully cover your device as it blocks moisture and can cause corrosion. The heat pump should not be enclosed as it operates all year round. What you want is to protect the fan without entirely covering the device. If the fan stops, the device may not function properly. It will try to keep running until it eventually turns off. A simple canopy or roof-like structure made of enclosure material is sufficient to protect the outdoor unit through the winter.
6. Make Good Use of Your Blinds
Curtains and blinds may be used for more than simply aesthetics; they can also be used to regulate the temperature inside your home. In the winter, leave them wide open to allow the sunlight to warm everything up. You can stay comfortable without adjusting the thermostat if you follow the HVAC guidelines.
7. Get your HVAC system professionally checked
If you haven’t already checked your HVAC heating system, you should. Ideally, heating should be checked and repaired at least once a year before season changes. A certified technician can detect likely issues before heating starts, saving you a cold night and expensive repair. Our local HVAC heating experts will prepare your stove to work efficiently and withstand this winter and beyond.