If you’re like most homeowners, you dread the coming of summer and the arrival of winter. These are the two most costly times of the year due to heating and cooling your home. During the summer, your AC runs nonstop. In the winter, your furnace roars night and day. The immediate result of keeping your home a comfortable temperature is high priced utility bills. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. There are several ways that you can reduce your utility bill without affecting your comfort. Here are six of the most important options you should know.
1. Switch Your Lighting
While not directly related to your AC use, your lights do affect your energy bill. One of the largest sources of power consumption in the home is lighting. By removing those conventional incandescent bulbs and replacing them with compact fluorescent bulbs, you do several things. First, CFL bulbs use far, far less power. Second, they last many times longer than conventional bulbs. Finally, they stay cooler, adding less heat to your home during use.
2. Cover Those Windows
Your windows let in light and fresh air, but they also let in heat and cold and force your AC or furnace to work harder. Use blinds, curtains and drapes to limit the effect of outside heat and cold on your interior. Cover your windows during the summer to reduce the amount of sunlight and exterior heat penetrating into your home. Open them during the daytime in winter to let some heat into the home.
3. Change Your AC Filter
This is one of the simplest, yet most overlooked ways to save money on your energy bill. If your AC system’s filter is old, dirty and clogged, the system has to work harder to pull in air. The harder it works, the more energy it uses and the higher your energy bill climbs. Check your filter regularly and replace it when it’s dirty. A maintenance plan from your HVAC service company can take this off your mind by replacing your filter twice per year during spring and fall maintenance services. Don’t forget, Berner A/C & Heat also has a filter purchase program that delivers direct to your door at a fraction of the typical filter cost.
4. Reduce Cooling with Fans during the Summer
If you have ceiling fans but aren’t using them in the summertime in conjunction with your air conditioning, your energy bill is climbing needlessly. Your ceiling fans help circulate air, making the interior of your home feel cooler. Using fans in conjunction with your air conditioner lets you set that thermostat higher without feeling like you’re hot. That saves a great deal of money over time.
5. Have Your HVAC System Serviced
A surprising amount of your energy bill is due to inefficient HVAC operation. Your central heating and air unit needs to be maintained properly in order to operate at peak efficiency. You should have your unit serviced twice per year to ensure that it remains properly lubricated, and that Freon levels are correct. This will also help catch other costly problems before they become true nightmares.
6. Install a Programmable Thermostat
If you’re still using an old-style manual thermostat, installing a programmable digital one can offer some significant savings. Because you can program it to set the interior temperature higher when you’re not home and then begin cooling or warming the home before you get home, you save a great deal on your energy bill over the course of a year. At Berner A/C & Heat we have the latest versions of programmable thermostats on the market, including the newest WiFi thermostats.
These are only a few of the many ways smart consumers can begin reducing the amount of money they shell out each month to their energy provider. There are numerous other options that can help as well. Contact Berner A/C & Heat today for more information on on these services listed and the important ways to make your unit more efficient.