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- Follow These HVAC Tips and Tricks to Save on Your Energy Bills
Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) units make up about 40% of a home’s energy bills. However, incorrectly-sized and ill-maintained equipment could be using way more energy.
These issues also affect the life span of HVAC systems, which supposedly should last for up to 20 years. Considering that a new HVAC costs around $2,000 to $5,000, the last thing you want is for your existing unit to fail early.
The good news is, there are many HVAC tips and tricks that can help you prevent premature unit failure. These include proper sizing and at-home or DIY maintenance for starters.
Ready to learn how to save money on a new or an existing heater and air conditioner?
Let’s dive right into it
1. The Right HVAC Size Matters
Pricing, quality, and correct sizing are three of the key factors to know about HVAC units. Yes, size matters, because it has a direct impact on how well the equipment will heat or cool your home.
An air conditioner that’s too small for a room, for instance, will run constantly. That’s because it will take the AC longer to cool the air to your desired temperature. As a result, it’ll take your AC a longer time to make you feel comfortable and cool.
An oversized AC won’t do any better, as its extreme power will satisfy the cooling load faster. This will make it restart or cycle on and off more quickly. Since it won’t’ run long enough, it won’t be able to correctly dehumidify indoor air.
This, in turn, also affects its ability to cool the air, as “humid air” holds more moisture. The higher the humidity level is, the “denser” or “heavier” the air is, which is more difficult to cool.
Either way, an improperly-sized HVAC will have a harder time making you comfy and cozy. It’ll also suffer premature wear and tear. This will then cut its service life short.
This is why it’s important to seek professional heating and cooling solutions. HVAC experts will take an accurate measurement of your home’s HVAC needs. This will then help them determine the right-sized unit for your home.
2. Adjust Your Thermostat When Nobody’s at Home
Before you leave home, adjust the thermostat by around 7 to 10 degrees from its normal setting. You can cut your heating and cooling costs by up to 10% a year by doing this. Moreover, it’ll help extend the life of the equipment since it gets “less stressed” for several hours a day.
3. Save Even More With a Programmable Thermostat
This is one of the best HVAC tips for homeowners that you should do as soon as you can. With a programmable thermostat, you can automate the task of adjusting your thermostat. You only have to preset the temperature settings and times you want the changes to occur.
This way, you don’t have to worry even if you forget to change the settings before leaving home. It’ll do the job for you, so you’ll automatically save on your heating and cooling bills.
4. Inspect HVAC Filters At Least Once A Month
One study found that only 56% of surveyed individuals never spent time indoors with a smoker. That means 44% of people in the US stay indoors possibly inhaling smoke-filled air. What’s more, the average percentage of their time that they’re at home with smokers is 43%!
If you belong to this group, one of the key HVAC tips to follow is to check your unit’s air filter at least once a month. This is important, as the contaminants in cigarette smoke mix with the air in your home. Keep in mind that there are 7,000 chemicals in this type of smoke, 250 of which are harmful to humans and even animals.
In fact, it’s best that you do this even if no one in your household smokes.
5. Change or Wash Your Filters as Often as Needed
If the filter shows a considerable layer of dust, dirt, and debris, change or wash it ASAP. Otherwise, your HVAC system may just circulate the pollutants within your home.
If you live with someone who smokes, wash or change the filter once a month. If not, you may only have to replace or clean it once every two or three months. This will depend on whether you have pets or if you live near a busy road or a construction site.
Improved indoor air quality is only a beneficial side effect of fresh filters though. Its main goal is to actually keep the internal parts of your HVAC system free of gunk.
Debris build-up, after all, restricts the power and efficiency of major HVAC parts. The filthier a filter is, the less air can pass into your heater or cooler. This will trigger the equipment to “work” harder so that it can get enough conditioned air to pass into your home.
As such, ensuring that you always have fresh filters keep your HVAC unit efficient. At the same time, you get to enjoy cleaner and fresher air at home.
6. Let the Outdoor Unit Breathe
Clear away vegetation that grows near the outdoor unit of your HVAC unit. There should be at least two feet of clearance within all sides. Doing this will help the equipment draw in proper amounts of air, which in turn, keeps it efficient.
7. Remove Molds and Debris From the Indoor Unit
As for the indoor HVAC unit, be sure to wipe away mold and algae from the evaporator coil regularly. After this, you should also remove debris build-up in the drip pan right under the coil. Complete the cleaning job by vacuuming the drain that the drip pan connects to.
Follow These HVAC Tips and Tricks to Save on Your Energy Bills
There you have it, your ultimate guide on the HVAC tips and tricks that will help reduce your energy costs. More than that, these maintenance hacks will help lessen the stress and strain you place on the unit. All these will then contribute to a longer-lasting, better-performing heater and air conditioner.
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