Fall is a great season to save money with heating and cooling costs. With all the school and holiday expense this time of year, it's nice to an area in your life that can actually SAVE you money.
Take a moment now to see how you can cut your energy bills with these helpful techniques...
10 Energy Saving Tips
1. Set back your thermostat.
This seems so simple. It takes just 5 seconds, and it could shave $30 a month on your energy bill. Adjust it to the coolest level that's comfortable. Caution: Don't set the thermostat more than 5 degrees cooler than the normal rating when you're away because of the amount of energy you'll need to heat it back up. Even better: Call us to get a new Ecobee Programmable thermostat with the IPhone/Android app so you can setback your thermostat anytime, anywhere.
2. Clean warm air registers, baseboard heaters and/or radiators.
Make sure that carpeting, furniture or draperies are not blocking them. Putting furniture over registers, or in front of radiators blocks the amount of heat that register/radiator can emit into the room, thus causing your system to run longer cycles, and (you guessed it!) cost you more money to operate.
3. Close that flue!
Fall and winter fires in the fireplace are warm, cozy and just plain wonderful, but an open flue damper draws warm air out of your house 24-hours a day. Your system will have to work overtime to heat up the house if a flue is left open. If you do shut your flue on a regular basis but still feel like you might be loosing heat out of the chimney, do a quick match test.
Light a match, hold it around the seal of your fireplace damper to check for leaks. If the flame is drawn up to the flue then you have a leak. And now that you know you can get your chimney company to come seal it for you.
4. Consider a humidifier.
The health benefits from a humidifier are known, but the Fall/Winter energy savings you can get from a humidifier can be as high as 20%. Humidity keeps your warm, forced air trapped in the living area in the house longer, thus satisfying your thermostat longer.
5. Get a heating tune-up!
This can save money, spot a danger, and make you more comfortable. Getting a tune up is the best way to avoid having to pay for a sudden, emergency repair that's likely to happen at the least convenient time possible. Find out What to Expect During an HVAC Tune Up.
6. Have your duct work checked for leaks.
If you've got split, fallen, or perforated duct work, then fixing these issues can save you a bundle! You should keep all the warm air you are paying for inside your home. Contact us to help.
7. Change your return air filters.
How often do you change your air filter? Now that you have that number in mind....give me the real answer! Every three months? Every six months? What filter are you using? It's OK. Call us with your filter size, and we can drop them off for you. A blocked return from a filter can cause your system to work much harder than usual as well as not provide the temperature that you desire inside the home. Do the math, save more by spending a little to change your filter more often.
8. Lower your dishwasher and washing machine temperatures.
Your dishwasher and washing machine use hot water from your house supply and drain it in a hurry. Heating up all of that water is much more costly in cold weather.
9. Consider storm windows or more efficient windows.
Although sometimes expensive, these can pay for themselves. Just getting a quote and estimate of savings will help. Most estimates are free, aside from the cost of your time, of course!
10. Seal all pipe penetrations into your house.
Where is the warm air? ("Inside the house") Where is the cold air? ("Outside the house") You might as well consider your crawlspace and attic areas "outside" your house. These places are not conditioned and yet they have hundreds of penetrations for water pipes, sewer lines, vent stacks, etc. Take a can of spray insulation from your local hardware store and seal up all those penetrations. Much like a leaky flue (see #3), these small penetrations add up and can be extremely costly over the course of a year if left untreated.
Don't Forget to Schedule Your Fall Tune Up
Fall is the perfect time to get an HVAC tune up. Hour heating and cooling system has just made it through the strenuous season of summer weather and is getting ready to have to work hard all over again this winter. If something is going to go wrong with your HVAC system, a tune up may be able to catch the problem before you're stuck without heat in the middle of a winter storm.
Consider getting a fall tune up to help ensure your HVAC system will make it through winter without any problems. After all, why let things escalate and risk having to repair the HVAC in your Richmond home around Christmas season or pay for an urgent AC repair in Mechanicsville at the worst possible time if you can avoid it? Contact us to schedule a routine fall tune up today.