There’s no doubt that heating and cooling your home is the largest energy expense in your home. In fact, according to the Department of Energy, heating and cooling accounts for about 56 percent of the energy used in a typical U.S. home, which makes efforts to reduce energy costs that much more important.
As you heat your home this winter, the experts at the York brand of heating and air conditioning recommend the following:
• Perform regular maintenance. Clean air filters, seal any duct leaks, make sure registers are clear of obstructions and check your insulation. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports that improper insulation can reduce system efficiency by as much as 30 percent.
• Hire a qualified technician to inspect and service your home comfort system. The technician will make sure your system is working properly and at peak efficiency. As a rule of thumb, heat pumps and oil-fired furnaces need annual tune-ups, while gas-fired equipment can be serviced every other year.
• Consider replacing an older, inefficient furnace or heat pump. A knowledgeable technician will be able to recommend a new, more efficient replacement system, such as ENERGY STAR®−qualified equipment that can help save you money on energy bills.
Efficiency is measured as annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) for furnaces and heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF) for heat pumps. The higher the AFUE or HSPF, the more efficient the unit and the less energy it requires to heat your home.
• Adjust your thermostat. By lowering it just a few degrees in cooler temperatures, you can help your heating system work less to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature.
• Think about installing a programmable thermostat. Programming your thermostat to accommodate your family’s time away from home and sleeping schedule will help to ensure that your system is operating only when you need it.
• Learn more. To learn more about efficient products that can help you conserve energy and save money, or to find a heating and cooling contractor near you, visit www.york.com.