What Can I Do to Lower My Energy Bills in Columbia? 03/04/2016What Can I Do to Lower My Energy Bills in Columbia? If you’re looking to save money, a great place to look is right inside your home. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, heating and cooling your home typically is about 48% of your utility bill. Some of the best ways to start saving money don’t necessitate a large investment of money or time. If you haven’t arranged for your furnace service for the year, that’s the perfect place to start. We also have a couple additional tips that can help keep your bills as low as possible. Schedule an Energy Audit If you get a hold of your local utility provider, they will come do an energy audit of your home. These services are usually provided free-of-charge and assess everything that is popping up on your energy bill, from your heating and cooling system to your kitchen and laundry appliances. A lot of utility companies also have rebates for insulation and other things that can boost your home’s efficiency. Smartly Program Your Programmable Thermostat Thermostats have come a long way, and the technology behind them only continues to evolve. For example, the iComfort S30 is able to utilize the GPS In your smartphone to determine when you’re leaving and makes the proper alteration to help you save money and improve efficiency while you’re gone. When you return home, everything goes to the way it was and you don’t have to worry about making any changes. It’s also able to adjust to your routine, so when baseball and football seasons kick off, your thermostat can make the proper adjustment. The Department of Energy notes that a well programmed thermostat can lower your heating costs by up to 35% and your cooling costs by up to 25%. Set your thermostat as low as you can, while ensuring you’re comfortable in the winter and as high as comfortable in the summer. There are several different models to select from so pick the one that best adapts to your schedule and needs. If your schedule changes often, a 7-day model is probably your best choice. They provide you the flexibility to set different programs for each day. These normally have four possible temperature stages per day. There are also 5+2 and 5-1-1 models. These models are best if you have the same schedule on weekdays and a different one for weekends. Selecting and Maintaining Your System If you think you’re almost to the point where your system should be replaced, it’s a good idea to research all of your options so you can make an informed decision when the time necessitates. Check out the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating of air conditioners and the AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) of the furnaces. The higher the ratings, the higher the savings. As always, our furnace and A/C pros will help you make a well-informed decision that meets you and your needs. If you’re not there yet, a simple furnace service and routine maintenance can keep your system operating smoothly and efficiently. If you haven’t set up your furnace service for the year or are having any sort of questions about your system or choices, schedule an appointment with us online or give us a call at 601-736-7362.