10 Tips For Saving Money on Your Heating and Air Conditioning System
As summer approaches, you may already be experiencing warmer temperatures and the need to use the air conditioning system in your home-especially if you live an in area where temps can reach over 85 degrees as early as May. Of course, with the increase in temperatures often comes a higher energy bill. Then, when temperatures begin to cool off and the heater is needed energy costs change again-sometime higher sometimes a bit lower. To help save money all year, you may be looking for some ways to cut costs while still keeping comfortable.
Heating and Air Systems Money Saving Tips
Statistic show that 46% of a homeowner’s utility bill goes toward heating and cooling. To help lower your energy consumption, implement the following tips:
- Keep your thermostat set as high as is comfortable during the summer months and as low as possible during the winter. Ideally, there should not be more than a difference of 10o between inside and outside temperatures.
- Use heat-resistant radiator reflectors between exterior walls to make the most of the heat inside the home.
- If you use the exhaust fans in your kitchen or bath, be sure to turn them off within 20 minutes of cooking or bathing, any longer is unnecessary and costly.
- Clean or replace the air filters per manufacturer’s instructions so that the unit can work more efficiently.
- During warm weather months keep window covering closed during the day to prevent solar gain; in cool weather months keep south -facing windows open so sunlight can enter and help heat the room, but close them at night to reduce any chill from the window.
- Keep air registers, baseboard heaters, or radiators free from obstructions; make sure to clean them often.
- If you need to purchase new heating or air products be sure to purchase those that are Energy Star certified. For heating units look for those with a high Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating in air conditioning units look for one with a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). Talking to a HVAC specialist can help you determine what is best for you needs.
- Consider having a programmable thermostat installed. Studies show that homes using a programmable thermostat save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling cost. A programmable thermostat allows you to set the times that a heating/cooling systems turns on in a given time frame so that when no one is home the temperature is kept lower/higher as needed.
- Use fans-box, whole house, ceiling-in place of turning the air conditioning higher. Often, just keeping the air moving is more efficient that turning up the thermostat.
- When installing a room air conditioner, place it on the north side of the house-if at all possible- or in the shade. Units operating in the shade use 10% less energy than those in the sun.