Keep Warm Air In Your Home And Money In Your Pocket
When the harsh cold winds of winter blow, having a nice warm home in which to retreat is great. The only problem is making that home nice and warm can be expensive. With some preparation and work before winter hits, you can reduce your energy use and save money. It is worth making sure your home heating system is as efficient as possible to prevent the waste of energy and your hard-earned money.
Start by locating air leaks. Some of the air leaks can easily be fixed yourself with caulking and weather stripping. Other leaks might take a contractor’s help to repair. Some common areas to find air leaks include:
- Behind or under knee walls
- The attic hatch
- Wiring holes
- Plumbing vents
- Furnace vents
- Dryer vents
- Recessed lights
- Windows and doors
There are other steps you can take to save on your power bill and increase the efficiency of your home as well. One of the easiest ways is to make sure the furnace filter is clean. Clean or change the filter monthly to keep air flowing freely. Dust and dirt slow down air flow, which makes the system work harder and ends up wasting energy and costing you money. Check the unit on the outside, as well, to make sure it is free from any debris or other airflow blockages.
Another step you can take is to install a programmable thermostat. This can help automatically turn the heat down when no one is home and turn the heat up when you need a warmer home.
Finally, when it comes time to replace your Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system, invest in energy efficient equipment that will help save money on heating bills. EnergyStar recommends having your HVAC system evaluated if it is over 10 years old or if it is not keeping your home comfortable. If your system needs to be replaced, talk to your installer about getting the most efficient unit you can afford.