How to Make Your HVAC System Work Efficiently
Did you know nearly half of what you spend in energy costs goes toward heating and cooling your home? Here’s a checklist to make sure your Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system is working as efficiently as possible to keep your home comfortable.
- Prepare your HVAC system for the season. Tune up your HVAC equipment to get it ready to be called into action! A system check-up includes assessing all electrical connections and controls to be sure the system starts, operates and shuts off properly.
- Change your system’s air filters regularly. Filters help to prevent dust and dirt from building up in the system and making it work harder to keep you warm or cool, but can’t do much if they are blocked. Filters should be changed at a minimum every three months and more frequently depending on the size of the home and whether you have pets.
- Seal your ducts. Leaks in your home’s air ducts can waste up to 30 percent of the air that moves through the system, putting more strain on the system to keep up. Make sure your ducts in attics, crawlspaces and unfinished basements are well-sealed using a mastic sealant or metal tape. A professional contractor can help to make sure there aren’t leaks from ducts you can’t access.
- Clean ducts for efficiency. If your home was recently renovated or if you have pets, duct cleaning can also help to improve the quality of the air inside your home and increase your home’s HVAC system.
- Install a programmable thermostat. Keep your system from working hard when no one is home. A smart, programmable thermostat like the popular Nest thermostat, can help make sure your HVAC system adjusts with the schedule your home demands. Smart thermostats can also provide data so you can track and manage your home’s energy resources.
- Consider an upgrade of older units. HVAC system that are ten years or older just simply don’t include the most energy-efficient equipment. Newer systems with ENERGY STAR rated equipment can help reduce your energy costs and make your home more comfortable. Any system should be properly installed by a professional to make sure it works correctly and safely.