By introducing energy upgrades for your HVAC system, you can cut your energy costs down, in some cases drastically. Here are some energy upgrades for your HVAC system that will help you cut the energy you use in heating and cooling your Florida home, and save money in the process.
Lighten the Load
The easiest and most effective thing you can do to reduce your HVAC energy usage is to reduce how much heating and cooling you need. This is called the load. When reducing or “lightening” your load, what you are effectively doing is making it easier for your HVAC system to work. These efforts make it easier to keep up your selected temperature in the home and prevent your home’s temperatures from heating up to the point that your air conditioning has to work twice as hard. That could include adding extra insulation to reduce leakage, improving ventilation systems to increase air flow, and sealing windows, but tightening your HVAC load includes many other facets. For instance, upgrading your lighting systems can reduce how much heat your lights emit. You may also want to consider ways to use solar gain effectively, like painting your roof a lighter color to reflect heat rather than absorb it or shuttering windows to prevent the sun from coming in.
You may also be able to save money on your heating and cooling costs with better maintenance. Annual tune-ups can help make sure that your system is operating efficiently as possible. Lubricating moving parts and tightening anything that is loose can help reduce friction within the system. There is also the issue of air flow. Dirty filters and ducts can impede the flow of air through your HVAC system, and raise your energy costs as a result. When your system doesn’t receive enough airflow, it has to draw harder. Replacing filters regularly and cleaning ductwork can open those lines and improve airflow so that your HVAC system doesn’t have to work as hard. You’ll save money and enjoy better air quality.
Control the Humidity
In very humid areas, like Sarasota, controlling moisture can be a huge challenge. Water in the air expands and heats up. It feels heavy and the heat stifling. Plus, it is very difficult to cool. If you can get the water out of the air, you can save money on cooling costs. Arid air is easier to cool and move. All you have to do is add a supplemental dehumidifier to your existing HVAC system. You could buy a standalone unit, or have an HVAC professional install one.
Programmable thermostats can also help reduce your HVAC energy costs because they help you avoid using your system when you don’t have to. Automated settings can help, but you can also set your own. For instance, most thermostats will keep a slightly higher temperature during the day, but you may not need to turn your air conditioning on if the temperature is close to comfort, and use a fan instead.
Improve Air Movement
Air movement makes a big difference in warm weather comfort. According to the Department of Energy, adding a ceiling fan while using an air conditioner makes the room feel about four degrees cooler. That means you could set your thermostat, four degrees less than your current setting when you have your ceiling fans on and not notice a difference in comfort.
For more information on ways to upgrade your HVAC system, call Aqua Plumbing and Air at 941-306-3715. We’re here to help!
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