Change Your Air Filter Regularly
Check your filter every month, especially during the heavy use months like winter and summer. If the filter looks dirty after one month, change it. At a minimum, change the filter every 3 months. A dirty filter will slow down air flow and make the system work harder, therefore wasting energy. A clean filter will also prevent dust and dirt from building up in the system that could potentially lead to expensive maintenance and/or early system failure.
Tune Up Your HVAC Equipment Yearly
Just as a tuneup for your car can improve your gas mileage, a yearly tuneup of your heating and cooling system can improve efficiency and comfort. Learn more here.
Keep Your Furnace Fan Running
Contrary to popular belief, running your furnace fan continually when combined with a variable speed motor can actually save you money. DC motors are capable of running extremely quiet and at low speeds. The result is power savings of up to 33% and a more evenly distributed temperature throughout the home, especially in 2 story homes.
Install A Programmable Thermostat
A programmable thermostat is ideal for people who are away from home during set periods of time throughout the week. Through proper use of pre-programmed settings, a programmable thermostat can save you about $180 every year in energy costs.
Consider Installing ENERGY STAR Qualified Heating and Cooling Equipment
If your HVAC equipment is more than 10 years old or not keeping your house comfortable, have it evaluated by a professional HVAC contractor. If it is not performing efficiently or needs upgrading, consider replacing it with a unit that has earned the ENERGY STAR rating. Depending on where you live, replacing your old heating and cooling equipment with ENERGY STAR qualified equipment can cut your annual energy bill by more than $115. But before you invest in a new HVAC system, make sure that you have addressed the big air leaks in your house and the duct system. Sometimes, these are the real sources of problem rather than your HVAC equipment.
Ask About Proper Installation Of Your New Equipment
Replacing your old heating and cooling equipment with new, energy efficient models is a great start. But to make sure that you get the best performance, the new equipment must be properly installed. In fact, improper installation can reduce system efficiency by up to 30%, costing you more on your utility bills and possibly shortening the life of the equipment.
If Your Furnace Is Over 20 Years Old Consider Replacement
Furnaces become inefficient over time and the average life of a furnace is about 25 years. As a rule of thumb, if your repair bill is a third of the cost of new equipment, it may be time to consider replacement.