4 Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

December 19, 2022

We can all benefit from saving money here and there. An easy way to accomplish this is by making some energy-efficient changes around your home. Upgrading your HVAC system or putting in a smart thermostat, for example, gives you more control over your HVAC system, contributing to a more energy-efficient home and more affordable monthly energy bills.

Keep reading to learn more about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home enhancements.

1. Install a Smart Thermostat

If you still use a round-dial thermostat and control it manually, think about 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 enjoy the most is having the capability to access their smart thermostats from anywhere with their smartphone or other smart device. For instance, if you forget to change your thermostat before leaving for vacation, you can easily pull out your smartphone and make the adjustments.

Just like a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat enables you to pre-set 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 learn your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient corrections. They can even create monthly energy reports that illustrate how much energy you are using and when so you can make adjustments to save money.

If you’re curious about how to secure a free smart thermostat, ask your utility company to learn if there are any discounts or free smart thermostats offered.

2. HVAC Tune Ups

Sadly, some homeowners often forget to have their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this does not seem like a problem, ignoring maintenance will sometimes lead to a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan.

When performing an HVAC maintenance service, your technician will evaluate your HVAC system, clean key components, and identify minor flaws before they produce bigger, more expensive repair issues. Maintenance can keep HVAC systems working at optimal condition, which means they use less energy to heat and cool your home. This can lower your energy bills, increase the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and lead to fewer repairs.

We encourage two HVAC tune ups annually – one in the spring before summer and one during the fall before the arrival of cold weather.

3. Getting rid of Your Aging, Inefficient HVAC Equipment

Unfortunately, like any appliance, HVAC systems have a shelf life and inevitably need to be replaced. New heaters and cooling products are much more efficient than units sold just over 10 years ago. Fortunately, helpful HVAC companies like GV Heating & Air can handle professional services including furnace installation in Crystal and Twin Cities.

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

A professional heating and cooling technician can help you find the most energy efficient HVAC system on the market. In general, try to find HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, indicating the equipment meets firm guidelines made by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems are often some of the most efficient systems available, offering both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is for heating systems and illustrates how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, meanwhile, is used to calculate the energy efficiency of cooling equipment.

Contact a reputable HVAC provider like GV Heating & Air for air conditioning installation in Crystal and Twin Cities.

4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters

The next time you’re shopping for new HVAC filters, remember that not all air filters are created equally. Some air filters are far more successful than others, leading to lower energy bills and a cleaner home environment.

The efficiency of HVAC air filters is rated by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges from 1-20; the higher the number, the more effective the filters are. It’s worthwhile to note, though, that high-efficiency air filters can sometimes obstruct airflow too much based on the type of HVAC system you own. It’s important to study the owner’s manual before getting a filter to find the best option for your system.