Heating your home in the cold Colorado winters can push you towards bursting your budget some years. Your HVAC system works extremely hard to keep you and your family warm as the temperatures outdoors sink. Your home’s furnace may seem to run constantly on the coldest days. Keeping warm indoors without tipping the scales on your heating budget means taking steps to create greater efficiency and perhaps relying on your furnace less. With some thought and creativity, and perhaps help from the professional HVAC technicians at Premier Heating and Air, there are a few strategies you can try to lower your energy use.
Regular Maintenance by a Professional
Keeping your HVAC system in top running operation means taking care of the heating and cooling units with preventative maintenance and regular tune-ups. Experts suggest having your HVAC technician check on your furnace once a year. Your technician will check that all mechanical components are working as they should. If any parts are damaged or worn, they should be replaced to avoid failure of the furnace. The technician will lubricate moving parts to reduce excess wear and tear from friction.
Your HVAC technician will also clean any excess dirt from your unit and inspect your ducts for any blockages or buildup. The electrical and gas connections leading to and from your furnace should also be inspected during your routine maintenance appointment. These connections pose dangerous risks to your health and property if faulty or damaged. You may also want to have the technician check and calibrate your thermostat. This annual maintenance helps extend the life of your HVAC system and maintain efficient operation.
Change the Air Filter Regularly
Your furnace contains an air filter that helps remove dust, debris, and allergens from the air that moves through the unit. With use, the filter begins to get dirty and fill and could eventually clog if not changed or cleaned. Once the filter becomes clogged, your furnace must work harder to force warm air out of the unit. Talk to your HVAC technician about energy-efficient filters and find the one that works best for your furnace. You’ll enjoy healthier indoor air and your furnace will work more efficiently with a clean, new air filter.
Use a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat uses a Wi-Fi connection to offer users an easy, convenient way of adjusting the temperature. With a smart thermostat, you can change the temperature from any room of the house or while away from home. Your smart thermostat can learn patterns and habits to adjust the temperature automatically. Smart or not, you should use the programmable functions on your thermostat to lower the temperature inside your home while nobody is home and when you go to sleep at night. Your smart thermostat can also show you trends in your energy usage and help you plan ways to lower your consumption. Some high-end smart thermostats can even tell you when there is a problem with your HVAC system.
Upgrade to an Energy-Efficient Unit
As technology advances, furnaces are becoming more and more energy efficient. If you have an older model, you may want to consider making an upgrade. As your furnace ages, the parts just don’t work as well as they once did. Even with routine maintenance, your furnace may be falling drastically short on energy efficiency when compared to a new heating unit. If your furnace is 10 years old or older, talk with your trusted HVAC company about whether it is time to install a new unit in your home. You may find that the unit you have is either too large or too small, so make sure you choose a new furnace that fits your home. The initial cost may pay off quickly in the coming years as you save money on your winter heating bills.
Consider Zone Heating
With zone heating, you can control the temperature in different areas of your home separately. Zone heating is especially useful for mid- to large-sized homes. This method of heating allows you to heat only the areas you want to be heated and lower the temperature in other zones. For example, many people with zone heating choose to split the home into separate zones for each level of the house. You may also choose to heat different zones on the same floor if you have a large layout on a single level.
Your single central heating unit still heats the entire home, but you have separate thermostats in each zone. Dampers in your ducts close off the vents to certain areas while opening vents up in others. With this process, you can eliminate hot and cold spots in the house and lower your energy usage. You can cut the temperature in parts of the home that aren’t used as often or at all. With zone heating, you can greatly reduce your energy consumption thus lowering your utility bills in the winter.
Bundle up With Extra Layers
Sometimes, you need to rely on something other than your HVAC system to keep you warm as the winter weather turns frigid. You might be tempted to run to the thermostat and crank up the temperature when you get the chills, but you have other options. Go to the closet and grab a cozy sweater. Pull on some cute fuzzy socks or slippers. Thermal underwear is great for keeping your body heat inside and the cold off your skin. Snuggling with your family is another great way to create warmth and lower your reliance on the furnace alone. When you are lounging on the couch watching TV or visiting with your family, grab a blanket for extra warmth. You can use clothing and blankets you already own to avoid added expenses while lowering your heating bills.
Utilize the Sunlight
The sun may not seem like the most likely source of heat in the winter. However, you can take advantage of the sunlight that spills through your windows. Open your shades in the morning to let the sunlight in. The heat that comes through can warm your house to a small degree, giving you an extra source of heat at no additional cost. In the evening when the sun goes down, close the blinds or curtains to shield against the cold.
Staying warm in the harsh Colorado winters is no easy task. For your comfort and safety, you need heat in your home. However, the more heat from your furnace, the higher your energy bills. Take some tips from us on ways to make your home more energy efficient as well as utilizing some other ideas on staying warm. Your budget will thank you when the electric bill comes. When you need professional help, we are ready to assist with HVAC repair and maintenance and indoor air quality services along with heat pump installation and repair. Call Premier Heating and Air today and find out how you can heat your home in Denver without cranking the thermostat.