Here are a few ways to save money (or NOT waste it) when using your heating and air conditioning systems.
- Set your hot water heater at 120 degrees. That’s hot enough for your daily needs.
- If your furnace is more than 10 years old, it’s 20% to 25% less efficient than a new one. If your annual heating bills are $1,000, you furnace is costing you more than $200 per year. Do the math and see if it pays to replace it.
- Programmable thermostats are a must. Adjust them so that the house is cooler while you’re away. Especially if everyone is working and the house is empty 5 days a week.
- Eliminate drafts – plug holes, and cover drafty windows with a plastic wrap & tape.
- When you turn your AC on, don’t set it cooler than normal. Relief will NOT come any faster. You’ll over cool and waste energy.
Increase your water heater efficiency by using low-flow faucets and shower heads throughout the house to decrease the amount of water used. This will make your hot water go further.
Drain a quart of water from your water heater tank every 3 months to remove sediment that slows down heat transfer and lowers the efficiency of your heater. Follow the proper steps suggested by your manufacturer since the type of tank you have can determine the best way to remove the sediment. Even if you have an annual service contract, this should be done at least 4 times a year.
If part of your upcoming remodeling project will include enhancing your HVAC system, here are a few suggestions:
- Replace old equipment with high-efficiency units. Payback period is less than 5 years.
- Better air filtration will improve indoor air quality.
- Heat recovery systems use waste heat from your air conditioning system to heat domestic hot water. Typical payback is less than 3 years.
- Programmable thermostats allow homeowners to set times and temperatures automatically. This could save up to 30% during the setback periods.
- Putting zones in different parts of the house will also save money, especially if you don’t always use one or more zones.