Texas enjoys sunny weather for most of the year, but in the winter months temperatures can get pretty low. Texans across the state turn up the heat to deal with cold fronts. However, heating a home without taking a moment to consider what you can do to help keep the cold out can cost homeowners dearly on their utility bills.
Take a look at the tips below to learn how to keep your home warm while keeping your bills low.
The Role of Your Thermostat in Heating
You come home to a cold home and are eager to warm up your home. The first thing you do is crank up your thermostat… right? Actually, think again before hiking up your thermostat. Raising the thermostat doesn’t actually heat your home faster, it just means that your heater will have to run longer to reach the set temperature.
Instead of overtaxing your heater or suffering through a cold home while your home heats up, consider installing a programmable or smart thermostat. These thermostats can be easily programmed to heat or cool your home at set times. If you don’t need your heater to run all day while you’re at work, program your thermostat to set a lower temperature during the day and to start heating up an hour before you come home.
Make It Hard For Heat to Escape
Nobody wants to pay for heat they aren’t using. When the temperatures start to drop and you start raising the temperature on your thermostat, make sure to check your home to ensure the warm air is actually staying there.
Check your windows and doors for air leaks. Window leaks can usually be fixed with caulk and doors with weatherstripping. Take a look at your attic and make sure the insulation there is up to par and replace it if necessary. Taking these few precautions could save you a lot in lost heat.
Change Your Air Filter
You’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating: change the air filters in your home. You should definitely do this at the beginning of the cold season, but you also need to check the air filter regularly to make sure that it’s clean. It’s generally recommended to change your air filters once every month.
If you wait too long to change air filters they will become dirty and clogged. This makes your system work harder than it should to circulate warm air in your home. Overworking your system shortens its lifespan, so you’ll end up having to pay for a new one sooner than you should have.
Clean Your Registers
Like your air filters, dirty registers put a strain on your furnace, making it work harder than it should and decreasing its lifespan. In addition, the air in your home comes through your registers, so if they’re dirty, your indoor air quality will suffer.
Vacuum registers every couple of months or as needed. If a vacuum won’t reach, dust the registers well. Homes with pets may need to clean their registers more often to prevent pet dander getting in the air.
Schedule Regular HVAC Maintenance
Make sure to schedule annual maintenance for your furnace. Even if you think that it’s working as well as it should, small problems can lead to big system failures. Having your furnace fail in the middle of winter can be a nightmare. Not only will you be cold, but since many homeowners are firing up their heaters and also experiencing failures, it might take longer for you to get yours fixed.
To avoid your furnace leaving you in the cold, schedule a maintenance appointment before the cold sets in. Professional HVAC technicians take this opportunity to make sure your furnace is running as it should, and to catch small problems you might not have noticed, preventing unexpected breakdowns in the future.
Ready to make your annual maintenance appointment? Contact AirOne Heating & Air Conditioning, an HVAC contractor in San Marcos, to schedule an appointment with one of our experts today.