Saving money on energy costs during the winter is as important as doing so during any other season. In fact, it may be significantly more important. In the United States at large, average winter heating costs can be as much as four times the cost of cooling the same house during the summer. The good news in this surprising statistic is that making meaningful improvements to save money during the winter can really pay off in the long run, both in lower monthly bills and in more consistent home comfort.
Here are some proven ways to reduce energy consumption during the winter without compromising comfort:
- Get a duct inspection. Leaky ducts in homes more than 10 years old typically spill heated air into the attic or crawl space — where it contributes nothing to household comfort. After an inspection to determine the extent of the leakage, a qualified HVAC professional can present options for sealing ductwork.
- Have your insulation checked. If your home still contains the same amount of insulation that was installed when it was constructed, it’s probably significantly underinsulated by current Department of Energy standards. A qualified HVAC contractor can evaluate the amount and condition of existing insulation to determine if upgrading is necessary.
- Schedule professional heating system maintenance. Yearly preventative tune ups on your heating system by an HVAC service technician will support optimum efficiency—which means lower monthly heating costs, as well as maximum heating performance. It’s also an opportunity for a trained technician to spot any incipient issues that might turn into major problems later.
- Air-seal the house to keep valuable heat inside where it belongs. Use silicone caulking to seal the long gap between the baseboard and the floor in rooms, as well as around ceiling-mounted light fixtures and other openings. Replace worn weatherstripping around doors and windows, as well as the attic access-hatch in the ceiling, with new weatherstripping. Outside, use expandable spray foam to fill openings in the structure that allow cold outdoor air to infiltrate exterior walls, such as around entry points for plumbing pipes.
Saving money during the winter while keeping comfortable is an achievable goal. For professional service to get it done, contact Jackson & Sons.What Are the Best Ways to Keep Your HVAC Unit from Overheating? » « Does the R22 Phase Out Apply to You?