Improving energy efficiency at home and reducing monthly bills doesn’t require major upgrades or replacements. A few simple, minor adjustments can help to lower your bills and save more while you stay comfy at home. Here are some key tips to save energy in your home.
Maintain Your Furnace
A rundown, neglected furnace will need to work extra hard to operate properly. Call in a technician to inspect, repair, and clean your HVAC system to ensure it functions as efficiently as possible. Replacing filters every three months is also encouraged to prolong your HVAC unit. In addition, preventative maintenance has been shown to reduce HVAC energy costs by between 5 to 40% depending on the system.
Get Air Ducts Cleaned
The HVAC system is responsible for consuming a large portion of energy at home, and every component of it can contribute to how much it spends and wastes. The air ducts are a key part of this. When they get clogged with dust, dirt, and other debris, it limits the amount of air that can circulate in your home while also contributing to polluted indoor air quality. Getting the ducts cleaned can remove blockages, improve energy efficiency, and even reduce heating and cooling costs by up to 11%.
A significant amount of air and energy gets lost due to ductwork that isn’t sealed up properly. As a result, air leaks can cause energy consumption to surge, along with your monthly bills. Have your ductwork inspected, particularly in areas that are often neglected, like an unfinished basement. You don’t want to be paying more to heat areas of your home that are rarely used.
Use Major Appliances During Off-Peak Times
Larger appliances like the washing machine, dryer and dishwasher, guzzle up more energy than others. To minimize your electricity bills, try to only use these during off-peak times. In Ontario, this falls between 7 pm to 7 am during weekdays and any time on the weekends.
Clean Your Appliances
Dirt and dust will impact the motor behind your fridge, causing it to use more energy. The same thing applies to your dryer’s exhaust. When these accumulate with dirt and dust, they become less efficient. Keep them clean and running optimally by vacuuming behind them a few times each year.
Use a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat can learn your habits for temperature control and then automatically adjust the temperature accordingly. So if you usually lower the thermostat before bed, it will do that for you, so you won’t have to worry about it. You can even manually adjust it using an app. This is very convenient when you’re not at home since you can lower the heat and even adjust your lights to save energy, all with the touch of a button. Studies have shown that smart thermostats can reduce energy costs by up to 15%.
Use Caulking or Weather-stripping Around Windows and Doors
Drafty windows and doors can easily waste energy and create an uncomfortable interior that always feels cold, even when the heat’s blaring. You can determine if yours are leaking air by lighting an incense stick and moving it close to the doors and windows. If the smoke starts to blow, then you know there’s an air leak. Use caulking or apply weather-stripping around the frames to seal them up and lock in your heat.
Use Ceiling Fans
A ceiling fan is an ideal and efficient way to stay comfortable and cool during those warmer days. And they can also be helpful in the colder months. During the winter, adjust the fan to spin clockwise to push hot air down and disperse it. In the summer, adjust it to spin clockwise to cool down the room.
If you think your duct system or dryer vent could use a professional, thorough cleaning, contact our team at Power Vac of Ottawa. We offer services for both residential and commercial spaces throughout the area.