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Are These Five Mistakes Driving up Your Heating Bill

Are These Five Mistakes Driving up Your Heating Bill

If you’re like the rest of us, your energy bills go way up during the winter. Of course, you want your home to be toasty in winter, but energy costs can throw a wrench into your plans. However, it’s possible to lower your energy bills with a few simple tweaks. Check if you’re making these five mistakes with your HVAC system and follow these easy changes to reduce your heating bill.

Not Changing Your Air Filter

If you’ve ever opened the engine compartment on your car and been hit with a blast of hot air, you know what it’s like to have dirty air filters. They’re a necessary part of your car’s engine, but they can get clogged quickly depending on your use and driving conditions.

The same thing happens to your HVAC system when you don’t regularly replace the filter. And when that happens, it makes your furnace and AC less efficient — which means higher energy bills and more stress on your household budget.

So why do people forget to change their air filters? In general, there are two main reasons:

  • They’re not sure how often they need to be changed.
  • They don’t know how to change the filter.

Image: dirty air filter meme.
Booking a regular HVAC tune-up will help keep those air filters clean and working efficiently.

The Thermostat is in the Wrong Place

It’s surprising how many homes have their thermostat in the wrong location. Often, it’s not your fault, especially if the HVAC system was installed when you moved in.

The best place to put your thermostat is in the center of your home.

It’ll give you a better overall reading and prevent ghost readings.

Ghost readings are when the temperature sensor picks up something other than what you want it to, like an appliance or even the sun shining through a window. The best way to prevent this is by placing your thermostat in a place with as few obstructions as possible. A room you spend a lot of time in is ideal.

Image: a child adjusting a thermostat.
When figuring out where to place your thermostat, think about what direction your house faces and how long it takes for heat and air to spread throughout all rooms in your home.

Forgetting to Book an HVAC Tune-Up

The majority of your home’s energy usage goes toward heating and cooling. A poorly maintained furnace will not work as efficiently as one recently tuned up. This means you’ll waste more fuel and spend more money on utility bills during the year’s colder months.

Image: a homeowner checks his vents to see why they're not working.
One way to save money on your energy bills is by getting a tune-up for your furnace or heat pump. A tune-up can help ensure that your heating unit runs as efficiently as possible. A professional technician will check everything is in working order.

Image: HVAC tools used during a furnace tune-up.
Additionally, getting a tune-up will help catch any problems before they get serious and result in costly furnace repairs.

Closing Registers and Vents

It’s tempting to close off your vents and registers over the winter. After all, you don’t want the heat to escape. But this practice can actually lead to problems and higher energy bills.

If you don’t have vents open, the furnace has to work harder to heat up your home. Unfortunately, this can cause it to break down sooner than expected. When a furnace has too much resistance during operation, it burns more fuel than it needs and wastes money on unnecessary energy consumption.

What’s more, closing vents isn’t only bad for your wallet. It’s also bad for your health.

Image: a person adjusting the vents in their home.
Closing off the vents means that any dust or other allergens inside the ducts get trapped inside the system. This can cause respiratory illness and other health problems for anyone sensitive to dust or other allergens.

If in doubt, leave your vents and registers open, so your furnace heats the space it’s designed to heat.

Adjusting the Thermostat Too Much

There’s nothing wrong with turning up the heat when you’re cold. But you may be wasting money by cranking up the thermostat more than a few degrees.

When it comes to heating your home, many people believe that the more they turn up their thermostats, the warmer they’ll feel. But if you’re trying to save money on heating costs, this is one of the worst habits you can have.

When the temperature outside drops below freezing, your furnace starts working harder to keep the house warm. When it comes on, it blows heated air through ducts throughout your home. As this heated air passes over cold surfaces in your home — like windows and walls — it cools down.

Image: Tiger King meme about adjusting the thermostat.
It takes time for this heat loss to even out and make the air feel warmer. And if you turn up the thermostat before this happens, you’ll end up paying more money for extra heat that isn’t needed.

Don’t struggle with a broken furnace this winter. Book your HVAC tune-up with the experts at Adeedo.

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