Save Money on Heating and Cooling: HVAC Costs and Energy-Efficiency

Whether the temperature dips well below freezing or it’s sky-high, your utility bills constantly seem like they’re climbing. No one wants to pay the utility companies more than they have to. Unfortunately, if your HVAC system (and your home) aren’t energy-efficient, you may need to. Luckily, this doesn’t mean you’re stuck with high energy bills forever.

What can you do to lower the costs and make your home more energy-efficient? If you have steadily rising bills, feel like your home’s temperature isn’t comfortable (even though you blast the AC or the heat) or are just looking for a way to shave some of the costs off of your monthly home budget, take a look at the top ways to make your home’s heating and cooling more energy efficient.

Your HVAC System

How efficiently does your HVAC system run? If it seems like your rooms aren’t heating or cooling evenly, it needs constant repairs or your energy bills keep increasing, your system may need an upgrade.

Yes, installing a new HVAC system is an expense, but it’s also an investment. Compared to the money that you’re losing in high energy bills, and constant repairs, you may end up saving in the long-run. For example, newer heating systems have AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency) percentage ratings. The higher the percentage rating, the more efficient the system is.

New, high-efficiency furnaces and boilers typically have an AFUE between 90% and 98.5%. Compare that to the 56% to 70% that an older, low-efficiency model has. Not only are newer heaters more energy-efficient, but so are newer AC systems. A new ENERGY STAR qualified AC system is about 15% more efficient when compared to older models and those that aren’t considered “high-efficiency.”

Home Insulation

Do you feel a draft when you get near your windows? Does your basement, attic or crawl space feel cold in the winter and hot in the summer? If your home isn’t well-insulated your HVAC system needs to work harder to heat and cool it.

Replacing old, single-pane windows (and repairing or replacing leaky or broken frames) is one way to keep the air inside where it belongs. If that’s an expense you’re not ready to invest in, adding plastic window film or storm windows can help to seal some of the air leaks and reduce your HVAC-related energy costs.

Along with windows, make sure that unheated and uncooled spaces have enough insulation. If your ductwork doesn’t extend into the basement, attic or some other space, call in the pros to insulate the area appropriately. This will help to the hold the heat or cooling in your home, keeping the temperature stable.

System Maintenance

Your HVAC system isn’t old…but you’re still seeing rising energy bills. What’s going on? If you haven’t had the system serviced, you may have a problem that you don’t know about. Regular service allows you to catch problems before they go from minor to major. The technician can identify worn parts or find equipment that’s in need of repair. The better your HVAC system works, the less money it costs to run it.

The same goes for keeping your HVAC system clean and debris-free. Regular maintenance also includes a professional cleaning. If your ducts are clogged, the filters are dirty or the system itself has grime and gunk clogging it, your heater and air conditioner have to work extra-hard just to heat or cool your home.

Do you need an HVAC upgrade or pre-season maintenance? 333-Help can assist in making your home’s energy-efficiency. Contact our professional team today to see what we can do for your home.