4 Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

December 19, 2022

We can all benefit from saving a few bucks here and there. One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is by identifying energy inefficiencies in your home. Upgrading your HVAC equipment or adding a smart thermostat, for example, offers more control over your heating and cooling system, contributing to a more energy-efficient home and savings on your monthly energy bills.

Continue below to learn more about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home changes.

1. Install a Smart Thermostat

If you still use an older thermostat and access it manually, consider taking a step toward the future by installing a smart, or Wi-Fi, thermostat – which contains several features to make your home more energy efficient.

The functionality homeowners appreciate the most is having the capability to access their smart thermostats from wherever through their smartphone or other smart device. As an example, when you forget to adjust your thermostat before taking a vacation, you can easily pull out your smartphone and make the adjustments.

Like a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat enables you to schedule your home’s temperature according to the time of day and day of the week so you’re not heating or cooling an empty house. Smart thermostats also feature the ability to understand your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient adjustments. They even generate monthly energy reports that illustrate how much energy you’re using and when so you can make adjustments to save money.

If you’re curious about how to get a free smart thermostat, check with your utility company to find out if there are any discounts or free smart thermostats available to you.

2. HVAC Tune Ups

Regrettably, lots of homeowners often forget about having their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this may not seem like a problem, ignoring maintenance could produce a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan.

With an HVAC maintenance service, your technician should examine your HVAC system, clean key components, and identify minor flaws before they produce bigger, more expensive repair issues. Tune ups keep HVAC systems working at optimal condition, which means less energy is used to heat and cool your home. This could also reduce your energy bills, prolong the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and lead to fewer repairs.

We recommend two HVAC tune ups every year – once during the spring before summer and another in the fall before the arrival of cold weather.

3. Upgrading Your Aging, Inefficient HVAC Equipment

Annoyingly, like every appliance, HVAC systems can't run forever and eventually need to be replaced. Newer heaters and cooling equipment is much more efficient than units produced just over a decade ago. Fortunately, local HVAC companies like Watts Electric & A/C Inc can perform professional services such as furnace installation in Columbia.

Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can last approximately 15-20 years. If the equipment is within that span, it can be a good idea to replace them early to avoid premature equipment failure that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your system is around 15 years old and needs an expensive repair, it’s definitely time to replace the system. As reported by the U.S. Department of Energy, installing a new HVAC system can sometimes save you about 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll recover some of the costs of installing a new system.

A professional comfort technician can help you identify the most energy efficient HVAC system available. As a general rule of thumb, seek out HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, meaning the equipment fulfills firm guidelines made by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems can be some of the most efficient systems on the market, offering both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is intended for heating systems and measures how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, in the meantime, is used to quantify the energy efficiency of cooling systems.

Get in touch with a reputable HVAC provider like Watts Electric & A/C Inc for air conditioning installation in Columbia.

4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters

The next time you’re shopping for new HVAC filters, remember that not all air filters are capable of providing the same results. Certain air filters are far more successful than others, leading to lower energy bills and a clean home.

The effectiveness of HVAC air filters is illustrated by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges from 1-20; the higher the number, the more efficient the filters are. It’s important to note, though, that high-efficiency air filters can actually restrict airflow too much according to the type of HVAC system you own. It’s important to read the owner’s manual before getting a filter to find the ideal model for your system.