Energy efficiency starts at home

Everyone knows that energy efficiency is important to protecting the environment and keeping prices as low as possible. Since you have limited control over what other people do, the best thing to do is make sure your own home is as efficient as possible. Use these three tips to improve your home’s energy efficiency. 

Get a Home Energy Audit

Image via Flickr by Tonu Mauring

Getting a home energy audit will show you where warm and cool air escape from your house. If you have any rooms that feel hot or cold compared to the rest of the house, then you almost certainly need an energy audit.

During your home energy audit, a professional will perform a blower door test to lower the air pressure inside your house. This causes outside air to come through cracks and poorly insulated areas. The auditor can detect these inefficient areas with a smoke pen or similar device.

Once you know where your home is losing energy, you can take action to limit that loss. Until you get the audit, everything is just guesswork.

Install a Programmable Thermostat

People waste a lot of energy heating and cooling their homes when they aren’t even there. If you spend eight hours at work during the day, then you should adjust your thermostat so the HVAC system doesn’t have to work so hard.

The obvious problem with this is that people forget to turn down their thermostats as they’re getting ready for work and school. Installing a programmable thermostat solves this problem. Once you have a programmable thermostat, you can set it to adjust the temperature according to your schedule.

NewAge Air has a wide range of programmable thermostats to meet the needs of diverse homeowners. Some of the thermostats let you add more than one schedule. This will keep the house comfortable during the weekend, when you probably spend more time at home.

Have Your HVAC System Serviced

Getting your HVAC system serviced regularly can dramatically reduce the amount of energy it uses to heat and cool your home.

There are some things that you can do on your own. For instance, you should replace your furnace’s filter once every month. Dirty filters make it difficult for the furnace and air conditioner to do their jobs. When you replace the filters, air can flow through more easily.

Some things, however, are best left to professionals. Some important maintenance services that professionals can perform include:

  • Checking the refrigerant levels

  • Looking for leaks

  • Inspecting ducts for damaged seals that can cause leaks

  • Oiling motors

  • Replacing worn belts

A professional can also test your thermostat’s accuracy. Thermostats don’t always tell the truth, so you need to have them calibrated from time to time. This isn’t something that the average person can do without professional assistance, so it’s best to have someone else do the job for you. You’ll get better accuracy that way.

Once you take responsibility for how energy efficient your home is, you can find all kinds of ways to save money while using less electricity and gas.

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