8 HVAC Tips for Homeowners
1. Keep up with routine maintenance
- If you don’t already have a proactive maintenance program for your HVAC system, it’s a good idea to schedule semi-annual service with a qualified HVAC service company.
- They can make sure your system is operating at its most efficient settings and that parts or components are in good working order.
2. Operate your HVAC system at optimum and stable temperatures
- The temperature you set your thermostat is largely a matter of personal comfort, but many systems have optimum temperature ranges that ensure they’re using energy efficiently.
- Consult your owner’s manual or with your service technician to find out the most energy-efficient temperature range.
- It’s also a good idea to avoid fluctuating temperatures too frequently, as this can make your HVAC system work harder and less efficiently.
- Most people think about stopping air infiltration in colder winter months, but it’s also crucial during AC season.
- Any air leak in your home robs your HVAC system of efficiency since that heated or cooled air is lost.
- Ensure that all windows are shut and that doors have good weather seals before turning on the HVAC system.
- Particularly in older homes, inadequate insulation is another factor that can lead to losing heated or cooled air from the HVAC system.
- If you’re unsure about your home’s insulation levels, consult with an energy auditor or insulation professional for guidance.
5. Turn down the thermostat
- Setting the thermostat to the coolest temperature in the winter or highest temperature you find comfortable can seem like a small step, but the energy savings can be substantial.
- According to the U.S. Department of Energy, reducing your home’s temperature 10 to 15 degrees for 8 hours at a time during the heating season can save you 5 to 15 percent in heating bills each year.
6. Use a programmable thermostat
- If you don’t have, installing a programmable thermostat one can go a long way in to help reduce energy use when you’re not home.
- The less your HVAC system has to work to maintain comfortable temperature levels that aren’t necessary because no one is home, the more savings you’ll see on your heating or cooling bill.
7. Change your filters regularly
- Changing your HVAC system’s air filters once a month, or as directed by the furnace or filter manufacturer, helps ensure your system has smooth, uninterrupted air flow.
- New filters can help your system work more efficiently, saving you money in the process. For example, new filters in your air conditioner can account for an energy consumption savings of 5 to 15 percent.
8. Use window treatments to help control temperature
- Window coverings can have a big effect on your home’s heating or cooling load.
- In cooler months, harness the sun’s free warmth by keeping curtains, blinds or drapes open on south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight in.
- Close them at night to add an extra layer of insulation between the glass and your home interior.
- In the summer, keep window coverings closed during the day to reduce temperatures.