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Heating and Cooling Efficiently

The biggest energy use in a home or business is the heating and cooling expense. Therefore, efficiency is a priority. The more efficient your system, the more likely you are to cut heating and cooling bills.

A step virtually everyone can do is to change the filter regularly. Of course, to do this, you need to have a supply of the correct size filters. Fortunately, these are relatively inexpensive. Take the size down from the edge of the filter, where it is usually printed, and go to a home building supply store or hardware store and buy a box of filters so you won’t be stuck needing a fresh one when an old one is ready for a change. At a minimum, the filter should be changed every month. A dirty filter slows the air flow. This makes the system work harder and this strains the system and costs more energy. It can also lead to expensive repairs or the failure of the unit.

Just like a regular oil change and auto tune-up can improve a car’s efficiency, a yearly check of the heating and cooling system helps to make sure it is in top running condition and clean. If it is a commercial system, it can be good to check it every six months. Contact your HVAC service professional before the change of season, because once the new season has started, he will be very busy.

If you get a newer, programmable thermostat, it can save you a lot of money. By programming the temperature to change slightly before you get home from work, it will save energy costs by not keeping the thermostat level set at the same level all day when no one is at home.

Air moves from the central heating and air conditioning unit throughout duct work in the house or business. If these ducts are sealed and insulated, it can improve the efficiency of the system. By sealing and insulating the ducts it helps keep them from getting either cold in the winter or hot in the summer.

If your system is ten years old or older, and does not seem to be working efficiently, it may be time to talk to a professional HVAC repairman. It may be time to replace it with a more efficient system. However, before replacing the system, make sure than other possibilities of improvements and repairs have been considered and implemented. If you do need a new system, it is important to get it installed properly. An improper installation can reduce efficiency, even when it is a new system.

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