9 Tips and Tricks to Reduce Your HVAC Energy Bills
The heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) unit’s usage at home makes up for more than 50% of your total energy consumption. And if you’re spending a lot on electricity bills, you can most likely blame your HVAC for this. It’s crucial to reduce the energy consumption of your HVAC to save energy and money.
Here are some things to do to reduce your HVAC energy bill.
- Schedule routine maintenance. If you still don’t have a maintenance program for your HVAC system, it’s time to schedule one. Contact a credible HVAC service company to do semi-annual maintenance services for your heating and cooling system. This step ensures that your system operates efficiently and its components are in good working condition.
Take care of your AC unit’s coils. Debris and dirt can pass through the outdoor unit of your AC, reducing the overall efficiency of the air conditioning unit since it has to consume more energy to keep the room temperature down.
Ensure that your AC’s outdoor unit is free from fallen leaves, dirt, and other debris to keep it in excellent working condition. The coils should be cleaned whenever they get dirty, and how quickly this happens is dependent on how often your air conditioner is used, whether you have a filter, how frequently you change filters, and the amount of debris or dust in the air outside and inside your home. If you think your outdoor unit needs cleaning, turn it off first before using a vacuum to remove the dirt.
- Use blinds,curtains, and drapes to maintain the temperature inside the home. Window coverings can affect your home’s cooling or heating load. During summer, keep your window coverings shut during the day to avoid increasing the temperature inside the house. In cold winter months, take advantage of the sun’s warmth by keeping blinds, drapes, and curtains open during the daytime to let sunlight in. At night, you can close the window coverings to add extra insulation to your home’s inside.
- Set your HVAC system at stable and optimum temperatures. It’s easy to set the thermostat according to your preferences, but a lot of systems have specific temperature ranges that allow them to use energy efficiently. Check your owner’s manual or with an HVAC technician to determine the best working temperature range for your system. It’s also best to avoid changing temperatures too often, such as taking the temperatures way down on hot days since it can make your unit work less efficiently.
- Seal windows and doors to avoid drafts. A lot of people are contented with preventing air infiltration during winter; however, it’s vital every time you’re using your HVAC system. Air leaks in your home affect the HVAC unit’s efficiency because the cooled or heated air is lost. Make sure that all windows are closed and your door is effectively sealed before using the HVAC system.
- Improve the insulation around your home. Inadequate insulation is one factor that leads to losing cooled or heated air, especially for older homes. If you’re not sure about the condition of your home’s insulation, seek the help of a professional insulation expert.
- Set your thermostat for eight hours at a time. Turning your thermostat to the highest temperature comfortable on hot days and coldest temperature in winter may seem simple enough, but the energy you save can be significant. Setting the thermostat for eight hours straight can save you 15% on your energy bill.
- Install a programmable thermostat. This step can significantly help reduce energy consumption when you’re not at home to control the HVAC settings. Your HVAC system does less work in maintaining a certain temperature level when no one is at home, which leads to more savings on your electricity bill.
- Change air filters regularly. Regularly changing your HVAC system’s air filters once every month or as stated in the manufacturer manual helps ensure that your unit works smoothly and efficiently. Here’s how to do it:
- Remove the filter and check it for dirt and debris.
- If light is not able to pass through the filter when placed under a light source, you need to wash it. Otherwise, you can return it.
- In washing the filter, use a toothbrush to remove the dirt.
- Soak the filter in soapy water for a few hours, dry it, and check if light can pass through it. If it does, place it back to position; otherwise, change into new air filters.
The energy consumption of HVAC systems is said to account for around half of the home’s utility bill. It would make great sense to manage the usage of the HVAC system properly at home to minimize electricity costs. Scheduling routine maintenance and proper care of filters and outdoor units are just some of the things you can do to wisely improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system at home. Alternatively, consider using renewable energy sources for your home.