While setting the thermostat to the right temperatures can improve the comfort of one’s home, it is not the only way to do so. Other ways for a homeowner to minimize energy usage and costs, while improving the overall environment inside of his or her home include:
- Wear warmer clothing and consider setting the temperature to lower than 72 degrees to see more savings on energy bills.
- Inspect and regularly replace filters.
- Get an inspection and furnace tune up before the arrival of winter to get the furnace ready for the season.
- Inspect the home for drafts and leaks. Seal up any cracks, holes or gaps in the home’s entryways, walls, and foundation to prevent thermal energy from escaping.
- Use weather stripping on doors and windows that are used frequently.
- Caulk or seal the windows and any unused exterior doors.
- Set the water tank temperature to 120 degrees to reduce thermal energy costs.
- Open the curtains or blinds to let the sunlight in to help heat the home.
- Rearrange furniture so that no one has to sit where there may be drafts coming in.
- Check all pipes and faucets for leaks. Insulate the pipes by covering them with a blanket.
Prior to the cold weather setting in, homeowners should make every effort to winterize their home. Stop playing with the thermostat and get more enjoyment out of your home by making it as energy efficient as possible.
Is your A/C ready for the upcoming Houston summer? This little break of gorgeous, Spring-like weather is a great time to get out and look at your unit and make sure it is clear of all debris and leaves. It spends all summer sucking up leaves, pollen, grass and sticks. Preserve the life of your unit by making sure there is a good two feet of clear space around it at all times.
Changing out your air filter is the MOST important thing you can do as a homeowner to protect and get the best use of your cooling system. The number one question we get is, “How often should my air filter be changed?”
The best answer seems to be – WHEN IT IS DIRTY. Well, duh! 🙂 But how do you know when it is dirty? Visual inspection is the key.
There are lots of factors that determine when the filter should be changed. How many people live in the house, how many pets and what kinds of pets, anyone have allergies? Are you doing home improvement projects or anything that might stir up more dust and particles? The best bet is to check it at least once a month.
It may not need to be changed – but get into the regular habit of checking. Add a reminder to your calendar – be it digital or analog – that will pop up to draw it to your attention. Also – make a note of when it was last changed and, as long as the factors in your home remain fairly constant (ie not embarking on a complete kitchen remodel or deciding to foster 12 puppies), you will soon learn the timeline for your particular home and family.