As you prepare for the winter, you may be concerned with the prospect of high heating costs. Severe conditions can make a huge impact on your home's energy usage, and your HVAC system contributes to a major portion of it. However, there are many ways to manage your equipment so you can curb costs while protecting the environment at the same time.
Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions Through Heating Maintenance
According to the EPA, 32 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States in 2012 were attributed to the use of electricity. If you operate an electric furnace or a heat pump to maintain your home's comfort levels during the winter, you're contributing significantly to those emissions. While you may not be able to completely eliminate your use of electricity for heating, you can reduce energy waste by having your HVAC system inspected and fine-tuned before winter temperatures set in.
A tune-up includes attention to various elements of your heating system, allowing your technician to identify problems with parts, clean or replace as needed. Electronic components can be tested for correct function. Your thermostat can be calibrated to ensure that the degrees selected accurately reflect the conditions reached. Your technician will evaluate issues such as refrigerant levels if you have a heat pump, and he or she will also take note of airflow issues that may affect the efficiency of your home's comfort equipment. A tune-up is crucial for keeping your heating system functioning according to manufacturer standards, and it can extend the life of your equipment as well. Every bit of energy saved because of a tune-up makes a difference to the environment.
Inspecting Your Ducts Matters More Than You Think
Ducts can result in serious levels of wasted energy, especially if leaks are present. Leaky ductwork can account for nearly 50 percent of the heating energy used during the winter months, making it important for both your budget and the environment to address the issue of leaky ducts. Your tune-up may provide a clue about leak issues, and you can schedule an inspection based on your technician's recommendations. If you've never had your ducts inspected, it's a good idea to plan for an inspection and cleaning at least once every three to five years.
Manage Your Thermostat Because Every Degree is Significant
The EPA indicates that a setback maintained for an eight-hour period can save up to 1 percent on your heating bill. The energy saved can also result in lower greenhouse gas emissions. While your 1 percent may not be significant in the grand scheme of things, many homeowners curbing their heating energy usage together can have a major effect. In doing your part, you may want to consider ENERGY STAR guidelines for winter heating settings:
- Begin your day with a setting of 70 degrees or lower.
- Set temperatures back 8 degrees during the day.
- Return to your morning setting in the evening.
- Set temperatures back 8 degrees for sleep time.
For more tips on saving energy, money, and the environment, contact All Around Service and Maintenance. We can schedule maintenance service or recommend the latest thermostat options for efficient comfort control management in your home in the Beaumont, Texas, and surrounding area.