Start out With the Right Furnace and ThermostatIf you?ve got an energy efficient home, you need an energy efficient furnace and thermostat to go with it. Look for furnaces that have an AFUE rating of between 90% and 95%. Those are high efficiency and will give you the most bang for your buck. The newest high-tech thermostats are also programmable, and you should invest in one of these if you haven’t already. They will allow you to save money by making sure the heat is turned down when everyone?s away or in bed under blankets. The heat can be set to automatically go back up an hour before you wake up or come home, so everything is toasty when you need it to be. It?s also worth checking your thermostat temperature. Turn it down by two degrees and you?ll see a 5% savings right off the bat. That?s why God made sweaters, folks.
Keep Up With Your MaintenanceSome HVAC experts estimate that 75% of the calls they get in the winter complaining of no heat are because people weren?t getting their furnace maintenance done. You can avoid heating repair costs if you do furnace maintenance regularly. There are some things you can do yourself, like making sure the filters are regularly replaced and the blower behind them is occasionally freed of dust. But you?ll also want to call professional furnace maintenance every season to make sure you keep things working at top efficiency.
Plug up the HolesAbout 15% of a home?s heat loss comes because of little cracks and holes. These are particularly easy to find around windows and doors, but they can occur anywhere. Find and repair them to avoid pouring money out of them! It?s also worth checking your windows. New double paned windows can be very energy efficient, and even cheaper ones are twice as good at keeping your heat in as a single paned window.
You depend on your heating system to keep you and your family safe and comfortable during the winter. Make sure it can depend on you to keep it in good repair. Get the right heating system, do your furnace maintenance, and plug up the holes. You?ll lower your energy costs and be more cozy this winter.
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