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Reduce Home Heating Costs This Winter

This article shares information on some of the most effective ways to reduce home heating costs.

 

Types of Heating Fuel

Some of the most common fuel types include electricity, propane and oil. With the constant price flux, it would be wise to choose a fuel type that saves you money on energy cost. According to research, average households in the U.S. spent around $600 on energy cost last winter when using oil as fuel for their heating system. If the same households were using propane or electricity, they would have spent around $1500 and $1700 respectively. If your home or business still uses an older heating and cooling system, then you’d be better off switching to a more energy efficient model.

 

Cleaning Your Ductwork

Accumulation of mold, dust and vermin inside your ducts is likely to raise your heating cost. By hiring a professional, your ducts can be fixed of leaks and cleaned to ensure they operate more efficiently. Traditional methods of sealing ducts included the use of mastics and ducts. However, a newer technology known as aerosealing has proven more effective when it comes to sealing ducts of leaks.

 

How Often Should You Service your Heating System?

Having a professional service your heating system at least once a year is highly recommended by experts. To ensure proper servicing is done on your unit, it would be wise to go for a contractor that has received proper training and possesses North American Technician Excellence certification. The cost of servicing your unit may range between $100 and $400 depending on various factors. You are also advised to change your filters every now and then, especially if you are using a forced-air system during the winter season.

 

Do You Have Enough Insulation?

Laying proper insulation on your attic and floor can save you a lot of money and trouble. When warm air is lost through plumbing vents and electric boxes, then your heating bill is likely to go up. You may also experience stack-effect which usually leads to drafty rooms. Follow us for more articles that keep your HVAC system running efficiently and saving you money.

The Furnace Inspection – Get Ready For Winter

Cold February winds challenge the heating efficiency of any heating system and prompt a question: Will your heating system make it through the winter? Although late summer and early fall are the ideal time to get the gas furnace ready for winter, it is still not too late to have your heating equipment serviced.

The Heating System Inspection

The best companies, like Philadelpha Gas & Electric Heating & Air Conditioning Co of Philadelphia, employ trained, licensed and certified service technicians who know what is required to put a gas furnace heating system in top running order and recommend that it be given a through inspection every year. A complete inspection should include the following actions:

  • The thermostat setting need to be checked to ensure that it is accurate and that it turns the furnace on in the correct sequence. It is also worth investing in a digital thermostat because they are more accurate and respond quicker to temperature changes.
  • All of the heater’s moving parts should be inspected and lubricated. Worn mechanical parts need to be replaced. Worn parts rob the system of efficiency and increase the cost of operation.
  • Electrical connections need to be inspected and tightened. It is also important to check voltage and current reading on fans and motors. Loose connections result in higher energy use and create a fire hazard.
  • Check all condenser drains for clogs. Clogged drains will cause water to back up and pose a potential source of water damage to the home.
  • On gas fired furnaces, check for proper gas pressure, burner operation and heat exchanger cracks. Improper burner settings are inefficient and create a carbon monoxide danger. Cracked heat exchangers are also a source of carbon monoxide leaks. The inspection also needs to include a complete cleaning of soot from the furnace.
  • Finally, all furnace controls need to be checked for proper starting and operation sequence. Today’s furnaces are designed with safety controls to ensure that heating equipment starts in a safe sequence that will automatically shut down if something is wrong.

The Advantages

Yearly furnace maintenance will prolong the life of the furnace, keep it running efficiently through the heating season, reduce annual operating costs and eliminate the probability of a breakdown on the coldest day of the year. It is estimated that a yearly inspection can reduce annual heating related energy cost by 5 to 10%. A complete inspection by a licensed and certified technician typically costs between $100 and $180. Many companies offer yearly contracts for heating and air conditioning systems that can be paid monthly.

However you decide to get the heating system inspected, it needs to be done as soon as possible. This way you will avoid the unexpected surprise of a heating system breakdown during the cold of winter.