Making Home Repairs for Winter? Remember to Have Your Heating System Inspected

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Since fall and winter are approaching, it’s time to make sure that your home’s heating systems, such as boilers, furnaces, and other sources of heat, are in excellent working condition. If your systems haven’t been regularly maintained, a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) expert will recommend that you do so.

The Costs of Heating and Cooling Your Home

Heating and air conditioning most likely constitutes a major part of your monthly utility bill. The United States Department of Energy reports that this can be around 43%. In a typical home, however, heating and cooling can exceed 50% of your energy usage. When the weather grows cold, space heating alone can comprise 45% of your monthly energy bills.

Taking Preventative Measures

A large percentage of the “no-heat” calls received by HVAC technicians during the winter are connected to a lack of maintenance. Some HVAC experts have stated that this can represent up to 75% of these calls. Since unserviced furnaces can quit without warning, it’s important to ensure that these receive regular inspections and maintenance. While it does depend on your area’s weather conditions, being without heat during severe cold and storms is definitely not advised.

How to Make Sure You’re Not Wasting Energy

When homes aren’t properly insulated, they can waste heat. This is particularly the case with homes that have unfinished or insufficiently insulated attics. The heat can literally exit a house through the roof as well as through other gaps. This is the case when you have a boiler or other means of heating your home.

Were you aware, for example, that you can lose 25% of your home’s heat even when these cracks and holes are small? In these instances, roughly 20% of every dollar that you spend to heat your home is basically wasted.

How to Save on Energy Usage and Costs

There are several steps that you can take to take charge of your heating usage and costs. Lowering your thermostat can assist with reducing your heating costs. When you lower it just 2 degrees, you will be able to save about 5% on your overall costs. While it does depend on your health and other factors, such as extreme weather conditions, thermostats can be turned down or off while you’re sleeping.

Another recommended method is to have a programmable thermostat installed in your home. These can potentially reduce your bill by 10% because you can set them to the desired temperature whether you’re at home or away from home. When you’ll be away for most of the day, you can reduce the heat a few degrees and then raise it when you return. In this way, you’re not wasting energy when no one is at home.

How to Increase Your Home’s Heating Efficiency

If you’ve been experiencing issues with your heating heating and cooling systems, it could also be because these system have been improperly installed. When this is the case, your home’s efficiency may decrease by 30%, which is yet another reason why scheduling routine inspections and maintenance is so important. If your system has been poorly or improperly installed, an HVAC technician will usually be able to re-install it for you.

Another way to ensure that you have sufficient heat in your home is to purchase a high-efficiency system. If you haven’t replaced your system in quite some time, or have recently purchased an older home with a boiler or another type of heating source, you may want to find out more about the new systems available.

You may be interested to know that the older, how-efficiency heating systems operate with an annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) of 56% to 70%. The current high-efficiency models, however, operate at a 90% to 98.5% AFUE.

Learn More From an HVAC Technician

Whether you have a boiler, furnace, or heat pump, an HVAC technician will be able to inspect your system, make necessary repairs, and perform other important tasks, such as measuring for carbon-monoxide leakage. In general, it will only cost about $80.00 to $100.00 to have a technician take care of these and other issues. When an HVAC technician comes to your home, you can also ask them about the new, high-efficiency models.

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