Family enjoying home comfort

How Can I Reduce My Energy Costs?

Throughout the coldest and hottest moments in Greater Richmond, your heating and cooling system is an important ally in keeping your home comfortable. On the other hand, it’s also your worst enemy when trying to lower your energy consumption. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, your HVAC system could be the culprit behind nearly half of your household’s energy use.

That hefty draw of energy makes your HVAC unit a perfect place to start changing your energy habits. Whether you’re looking to shrink your carbon footprint or want to lower your utility bill, there are many ways—big and small—to direct how your heating and cooling system consumes energy.

Change Your Air Filters

The air filters in your HVAC system are critical to keeping up your home’s air quality. They help capture a variety of debris—including dust, dirt and other small particles—and stop them from polluting your home. However, when your filters become dirty, it isn’t just your air quality that is affected. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, a dirty filter can lower air conditioner efficiency by up to 15 percent. Replacing your air filter routinely keeps your system from using an unnecessary amount of energy. Replace one-inch pleated filters every month. Remember, filters could need more frequent attention if your HVAC system is in constant use, is around dusty conditions, or you have pets at your home. Reach out to Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling to find out what frequency of filter change is correct for your system.

Schedule Regular HVAC Service

If you expect your HVAC system to work as efficiently as possible, routine maintenance is a must. Once it is spring, have an HVAC professional assess your air conditioner and clean its coils, check refrigerant levels, adjust system controls and more. In the fall, have them come back to check up on your furnace and make adjustments before the cooler weather sets in later. Consistent maintenance confirms your equipment is ready to work exactly as it was planned to—with peak efficiency. Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling technicians are well-equipped to help your system get back on track.

Switch Out Your Thermostat

Reducing those energy costs can be as easy as adjusting the temperature in your home while you’re asleep or gone. The closer the house’s temp is to the conditions outside, the lower your energy bill can be. However, this doesn’t mean you’ll need to take drastic measures each day. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends lowering or increasing (depending on the season) your temperature by just resetting your thermostat when you are asleep or away from the home.

You could make these adjustments yourself each day, but a programmable thermostat automates the process. These thermostats allow you to select a schedule for your HVAC system and automatically adjusts the temperature in your home to match it. A smart thermostat takes your control a step further, typically allowing you to monitor the temperature wirelessly from almost anywhere. Consult with Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling to see if either of these options are a good fit for you.

Upgrade Your Equipment

Out-of-date HVAC equipment can be an issue on your energy bill each month. Whether they’re no longer working efficiently, are the inappropriate size for your home or lack the energy efficiency new systems have, there’s a good chance your system is costing you extra money if it’s more than 10 years old.

When you’ve determined it’s time to look for a replacement system, Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling can give give you a hand. We’ll help you understand different efficiency ratings and choose a system that will work for your needs.

If you have more questions about monitoring your energy costs, need to schedule maintenance or want to discuss new system options, the team at Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling in Greater Richmond is all set to guide you. Reach us at 804-302-6657 or schedule an appointment online.

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