If you want to make sure your home is energy efficient, you have to look at many areas. It’s important to remember the basics if you want an energy efficient home. Homeowners get excited when they think about installing smart lights or low-flow showerheads, but there are simpler ways to help your home use less energy. In fact, one of the best ways to save power is by maintaining your existing systems.
One of the most important systems in most homes throughout the US is the HVAC. Your HVAC system is essential for climate control, which makes it extremely useful during periods of uncomfortable weather. Americans in most states don’t just enjoy HVACs—they need them. The problem is that your HVAC has the potential to use a lot of energy.
The good news is that your HVAC doesn’t have to be an energy-hog. In fact, many people can reduce the power consumption of their HVAC systems with some simple maintenance. This maintenance makes your HVAC (and therefore, your home) more energy efficient, which means it will save you money when your monthly utility bills arrive.
Preventative HVAC Maintenance: a DIY Way to an Energy Efficient Home
Lots of people think that HVAC maintenance means calling a professional, but that’s only part of it. You can actually do a lot of things by yourself to make sure your HVAC stays healthy and uses energy efficiently. This is called preventative maintenance. Preventative maintenance actually helps you avoid calling a professional earlier than necessary. Here are a couple of ways you can provide preventative maintenance for your HVAC system:
- Once every weekend in the summer, walk around your outdoor unit and move any twigs, leaves or other debris at least two feet away from it.
- Change the filters in your system at least once every month.
- Check the ductwork in your home for leaks regularly.
- Make sure your thermostat always has fresh batteries, and that it’s set to the correct temperature.
Learning additional preventative maintenance strategies and following the ones above can help you stop your system from wearing out early and requiring expensive professional help.
When to Call a Professional Service Technician
All of the above suggestions are simple, and can be taken care of without specialized knowledge. However, there are certain situations that call for professional assistance. If you notice leaking water around your indoor unit, you may want to call a professional. Similarly, an HVAC technician should be called whenever you hear loud, unexplained noises from inside your unit or if you smell something burning. You don’t have to wait for such obvious signs to tell you that you have HVAC trouble, either. Use a diagnostic tool like the Homeselfe app to monitor your energy usage, and make note of any sudden increases. If your utility bills are climbing and you can’t explain why, then you might have HVAC trouble on your hands.
Heating and cooling account for 48% of the average American home’s energy costs, so it’s vital that your HVAC isn’t using more energy than it should be. Keep track of the way your home uses power, and learn some ways to keep your HVAC in good shape. If you do, you should be able to keep your home energy efficient and prevent your utility bills from rising dramatically.