We can all benefit from saving a few bucks from time to time. One of the easiest ways to do this is by making some energy-efficient changes around your home. Upgrading your HVAC equipment or putting in a smart thermostat, for example, gives you more control over your HVAC system, resulting in a more energy-efficient home and lower monthly energy bills.  

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

 1. Try 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 includes a number of features to assist with energy efficiency. 

The functionality homeowners like the most is having the capability to adjust their smart thermostats from wherever with their smartphone or other smart device. As an example, if you forget to adjust your thermostat before leaving for vacation, you can simply use your smartphone and make the adjustments.  

Just like a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat enables you to schedule your home’s temperature according to the time of day and day of the week so you’re not cooling or heating an empty house. Smart thermostats also feature the capacity to understand your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient modifications. They even provide monthly energy reports that demonstrate how much energy you’re using and when so you can make adjustments to cut costs.  

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

2. Regularly Scheduled Tune-Ups for Your HVAC System 

Unfortunately, many homeowners often forget about having their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this does not seem like a huge deal, inadequate maintenance can result in a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan. 

During an HVAC maintenance service, the technician will evaluate your HVAC system, clean key components, and pinpoint minor problems before they create bigger, more expensive repair issues. Maintenance keeps HVAC systems running in optimal condition, which means less energy is used to heat and cool your home. This will help with your energy bills, increase the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and lead to fewer repairs. 

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

3. Upgrading Your Worn-Down, Inefficient HVAC Equipment 

Regretfully, like every appliance, HVAC systems have a shelf life and ultimately need to be replaced. New heaters and cooling equipment is much more effective than models sold just over a decade ago. Thankfully, local HVAC companies like Custom Air Systems Inc can handle professional services including furnace installation in .  

Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can last approximately 15-20 years. If your systems are within that timeframe, it might be a good idea to replace them now to avoid untimely equipment failures that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your system is about 15 years old and requires an expensive repair, it’s usually time to replace the unit. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, getting a new HVAC system could save you approximately 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll recover some of the costs of installing a new system. 

 A professional HVAC technician can help you determine the most energy efficient HVAC system for your needs. In general, look for HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, which means the equipment meets strict guidelines established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems are often some of the most efficient systems around, boasting both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is used for heating systems and measures how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, meanwhile, is used to quantify the energy efficiency of air conditioning systems.  

Call a reputable HVAC provider like Custom Air Systems Inc for air conditioning installation in . 

 4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters 

The next time you’re looking for new HVAC filters, consider that not all air filters are created equally. Specific air filters are far more successful than others, resulting in lower energy bills and cleaner indoor air. 

The performance of HVAC air filters is scored by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges between 1-20; the higher the number, the more efficient the filters are. It’s worthwhile to note, though, that high-efficiency air filters can sometimes restrict airflow too much based on the type of HVAC system you own. It’s worthwhile to study the owner’s manual before purchasing a filter to determine the right one for your system.