Heating a home is one of the highest costs that a homeowner has to contend with. Thus, if you are trying to keep your bills low, trying to reduce your heating costs is a great place to start. Installing a highly efficient furnace is a good move, but if you really want to reduce your costs, you need to take multiple steps to optimize the energy efficiency of your home.
Seal Leaky Ducts
When your furnace pushes air through your ducts, the movement of the air exerts outward pressure on your ducts, and this pressure is enough to cause your joints and seams to fail over time. Leaks in your duct system can lower your system efficiency by up to 40%. In other words, if you start with a furnace that is 85% efficient, your ducts will cut your overall system efficiency to 45%. Thus, for every thousand dollars, you are spending on heating your home, you are simply throwing away $550. Sealing leaks is really not all that hard if you have access to your ducts.
1. Turn your thermostat to fan, and then run a lit stick of incense along the joints and seams in your ducts.
2. Anyplace where air escaping from your ducts disturbs the smoke on your incense, you have a leak. Mark the leak with a permanent marker and continue your hunt for leaks.
3. Turn off the fan, and seal your leaks by using a putty knife to apply a thick coat of duct mastic to each leak.
Low-E Window Film
At least 10% of the heat that your furnace generates escapes your home through your windows. You might think that the heat is escaping through cracks in the window frame or around weatherstripping, but heat can leak right through a window pane. To prevent this heat loss, you should apply low-e window film to your windows. Studies suggest that window films can reduce your heating needs by up to 25%. You can buy and install window films on your own or for a little more money, you can have experts do the work for you. The savings you will get are well worth the money.
You might think that there is nothing you can do as a homeowner to improve the function of your heating system. This is simply not true. By understanding what undermines the function of your system, you can take steps to optimize your system performance and maximize your savings.
To learn more, contact a company like Pell City Heating & Cooling Inc.