We can all benefit from saving a few bucks from time to time. One of the simplest ways to accomplish this is by improving energy efficiency in your home. Upgrading your HVAC system or adding a smart thermostat, for example, provides more control over your HVAC equipment, contributing to a more energy-efficient home and lower monthly energy bills.
Keep reading to learn about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home changes.
1. Install a Smart Thermostat
If you still use a round-dial thermostat and access it manually, try taking a step toward the future by installing a smart, or Wi-Fi, thermostat – which contains several features to assist with energy efficiency.
The functionality homeowners like the most is having the capability to control their smart thermostats from anywhere they want through their smartphone or other smart device. For example, in situations where you forget to use your thermostat before leaving for vacation, you can simply pull out your smartphone and make the necessary adjustment.
Like a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat allows you to schedule your home’s temperature according to the time of day and day of the week so you’re not heating or cooling an empty house. Smart thermostats also offer the ability to learn your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient modifications. They even generate monthly energy reports that demonstrate how much energy you’re using and when so you can make changes to save money.
If you’re wanting to know how to get a free smart thermostat, ask your utility company to find out if there are any discounts or free smart thermostats available to you.
2. HVAC Tune Ups
Regrettably, many homeowners often forget to keep their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this does not seem important, ignoring maintenance can result in a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan.
When performing an HVAC maintenance service, the technician is going to evaluate your HVAC system, clean key components, and pinpoint minor issues before they lead to bigger, more expensive repair issues. Maintenance can keep HVAC systems functioning at optimal condition, which means less energy is used to heat and cool your home. This will help with your energy bills, expand the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and lead to fewer repairs.
We recommend two HVAC tune ups annually – one in the spring before summer and another in the fall before the arrival of cold weather.
3. Upgrading Your Old, Inefficient HVAC Equipment
Unfortunately, like any appliance, HVAC systems can't run forever and eventually need to be replaced. Modern heaters and cooling products are much more efficient than units sold just over a decade ago. Fortunately, local HVAC companies like Morgner Inc. Air Conditioning & Heating can perform professional services like furnace installation in St. Louis.
Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can run for around 15-20 years. If your system is within that period of time, it might be a good idea to replace them now to prevent premature equipment failures that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your system is approaching 15 years old and has a problem that needs an expensive repair, it’s almost always time to replace the system. As reported by the U.S. Department of Energy, getting a new HVAC system can sometimes save you approximately 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll get back some of the costs of putting in a new system.
A professional comfort technician can help you find the most energy efficient HVAC system on the market. For the most part, look for HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, which means the equipment meets firm guidelines established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems are often some of the most efficient systems available, boasting both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is used for heating systems and illustrates how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, on the other hand, is used to quantify the energy efficiency of cooling systems.
Contact a reputable HVAC provider like Morgner Inc. Air Conditioning & Heating for air conditioning installation in St. Louis.
4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters
When you’re searching for new HVAC filters, keep in mind that not all air filters are capable of providing the same results. Certain air filters are far more successful than others, contributing to lower energy bills and a cleaner home environment.
The efficiency of HVAC air filters is illustrated by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges between 1-20; the higher the number, the more effective the filters are. It’s relevant to note, though, that high-efficiency air filters can in fact impede airflow too much based on the type of HVAC system you installed. It’s worthwhile to review the owner’s manual before getting a filter to find the best option for your system.