Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Whole House Approach - When It Comes to Saving Energy Atlanta GA, HVAC | Heating, Air Conditioning Marietta GA | 770-444-9142

The Whole House Approach When it comes to saving energy, every little change you make in your house has an impact. However, you’ll see the greatest difference if you take the “whole house approach.” Think of your home as a small ecosystem. No matter how efficient your heating or cooling system, or how low you set your thermostat in the winter, or how good your insulation, if your ducts leak or you have drafty windows and other air leaks, you’re fighting a losing battle to heat or cool your home efficiently. That’s just one example. The point is, while every little bit of improvement in your energy efficiency helps, approaching your house as an ecosystem where each part is dependent on the others will bring you best results. According to the Department of Energy, it’s possible to reduce your utility bills by 25 percent with diligent changes to your practices along with other changes. This article is the first in a three-part series aimed at guiding you through energy-saving, bill-lowering tips that, for the most part, you can DIY. You may be able to implement some of these tips immediately while others can be worked on as your budget or time permits. Efficient Heating and Cooling Change or clean HVAC filters regularly. Fresh filters ensure your HVAC system breathes properly, boosting energy efficiency, and ensure better indoor air quality. Block or allow direct sunlight on your windows according to the season. In the winter the sun helps warm your home, but in the summer it makes your home hotter, causing your air conditioner to work harder. Consider trees for shading during the summer or even window film that blocks the solar rays on the hottest sides of your home. Use fans in the summer to keep your house comfortable. Moving air feels cooler, allowing you to set your thermostat higher. Consider your window curtains, shades or blinds carefully. Insulated drapes help block heat and cold, for instance, while sheers allow air to flow right through. Dark colors absorb heat while light colors don’t. Choose your window coverings with your needs in mind. Run humidifiers or dehumidifiers. Raising the humidity in the air during winter makes it seem warmer, and likewise, dehumidifiers help a space feel cooler in the summer. Plus, removing humidity relieves strain on your air conditioner. Note: Check your humidity level before running a humidifier to ensure you aren’t simply creating a steam bath environment that encourages mold, mildew and rot. Also avoid making the environment too dry. Open your windows and use the night air to cool your home in the fall or spring. A box fan set in the window will draw in air and help limit your use of the air conditioner. Watch your thermostat temperature settings. In the summer, aim for between 74 and 80 degrees for greater energy savings. Under 70 degrees is ideal in winter. Keep the thermostat far from drafts, heat sources or other conditions that alter the proper temperature reading. Install a programmable thermostat. The ability to set your air conditioner to a warmer temperature or your heater to a cooler setting when you plan to be away from the home for long periods saves energy and money. Keep in mind that extreme temperature fluctuations may be self-defeating; In other words, it can take more energy to heat the home back to a livable temperature if it gets too cold while you are away. Setting your thermostat just a few degrees lower during your workday will reflect in your energy bill. HVAC Marietta GA

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