It is up to you to decide to use your HVAC unit more efficiently in order to save money and energy. It's very easy to do, and only takes a few steps. With these simple steps, you will be surprised at how much more green there is in your life, not just by saving the environment, but in your wallet as well.
Adjusting Your Thermostat
The simplest investment you can make is a programmable thermostat. Not only are they convenient, but they help save money. When you are home, set the temperature at the recommended setting. . In the summer, experts recommend setting the air conditioning to between 78 and 80. In the winter, try not to turn it up above 68. If you can bundle up with sweaters and blankets, try turning it down to 60.
You can also use a programmable thermostat to help you save money when no one is home. Because most thermostats can be programmed to go up or down based on the time of day, this is easy to do. You can also adjust the thermostat manually when you leave. When you leave, turn the thermostat down in the summer, and up in the winter.
A modern HVAC unit does not take much time to heat up and cool down, and you are wasting energy when no one is home. At night you should lower or raise the thermostat a bit. If it is very cold you should leave the thermostat high enough that the pipes will not freeze, but otherwise you will be fine. If you are going to be gone for a long time, and there is no reason to leave your home or office climate controlled, you can turn it off completely. Do not adjust the temperature too much. This will negate all the energy savings because of the effort it takes to heat up and cool down.
Perform Regular Maintenance
It might seem like a large chunk of money, but regularly scheduled maintenance on your HVAC system will save you money in the long run. If you get everything checked out before small problems become large problems, it will save you money on emergency repairs. An inefficient system can also lead to higher energy costs and higher bills.
A good time to have your HVAC system checked out is in the fall and the spring when you switch from air conditioning to heating and vice versa. Spring and fall are also good times to have your HVAC unit cleaned and lubricated. This will also keep the system efficient and in good working order. Talk to a qualified HVAC technician about setting up a regular maintenance schedule that will work with your schedule. This way you can have peace of mind because you do not have to worry about last minute scheduling.
Change the Filters Regularly
Depending on the make and model of your unit filters should be changed an average of every three months, but some models should be changed monthly. Check with a HVAC technician or the manufacturer. When the filters are dirty, the unit has to work harder because air flows slower. This taxes the system and wastes energy. When your home or office has reached the specified temperature the unit shuts off to conserve energy, but with dirty filters it has to work harder and longer. The longer it works the more likely it is to break down. Once you know how often to change the filter, pick a day every month or so and change it.
These simple steps can help you get the most out of your air conditioners in the summer and heaters in the winter. Your HVAC unit and wallet will thank you.