- Set your thermostat comfortably low in the winter and comfortably high in the summer.
- Install a programmable thermostat that is compatible with your heating and cooling system.
- Clean or replace filters on furnaces once a month or as needed.
- Clean warm-air registers, baseboard heaters, and radiators as needed; make sure they’re not blocked by furniture, carpeting, or drapes.
- Turn off kitchen, bath, and other exhaust fans within 20 minutes after you are done cooking or bathing; when replacing exhaust fans, consider installing high-efficiency, low-noise models.
- During the heating season, keep the draperies and shades on your south facing windows open during the day to allow the sunlight to enter your home and closed at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.
- During the cooling season, keep the window coverings closed during the day to prevent solar gain.
EXCEEDING THE SEER STANDARD:
When it comes to heating and cooling, time is literally money. A very efficient air handler, can reduce the work done by the compressor in your outdoor unit, achieving the desired temperature in your home for less money.
All a/c and heat pump systems have a SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating associated with them. It’s a measure of their efficiency. These ratings are like miles per gallon in cars – the higher the SEER, the more energy efficient the unit.
In January 2006, the Department of Energy increased the minimum SEER from 10 to 13. SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) indicates the efficiencies of different types of equipment. The majority of systems installed before 1992 are 10 SEER or below and will continue to drop in efficiency as the system ages.
LONG-TERM SAVINGS TIP:
Select energy-efficient products when you buy new heating and cooling equipment. A-1 Heat and Air Condioning can give you energy fact sheets for different types, models, and designs to help you compare energy usage. For furnaces, look for high Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) ratings. The national minimum is 78% AFUE, but there are models on the market that exceed 90% AFUE.