Fall and Winter Upkeep Tips
With Fall now here and Winter not far behind, it’s a good time to think about your heating system before the weather turns for the worse. So here are a few quick tips to help you stay comfortable and safe this winter.
First and foremost, change that air filter! I know you are supposed to do it monthly, but the majority of us aren’t so disciplined. So take the time now to change it out. Proper airflow is the lifeblood of your system, and if you have a clogged filter, it will choke off the airflow causing decreased comfort levels and increased heating costs.
For all of you that have programmable thermostats, I have two words for you, “use them”. Research has found that about 40% of programmable thermostat owners didn’t use the programming features. You’re throwing away money if you’re not. You’ll save 10-15% on your heating bills if properly used.
While we are on the subject of programmable thermostats, the question of how far to set the temperature back while away during the day or even at night while sleeping is a common one. If you heat with gas, propane, or oil, feel free to turn the temperature down 5 degrees or more during your time away or while sleeping. Your furnace will have no problem catching up in an efficient manner. As for you heat pump owners, it is recommended to only set back your heat by 2 to 3 degrees if at all. When a heat pump is in its heating mode, setting back the thermostat can cause the auxiliary electric heat strips to come on to help provide additional heat to the unit in order to get your home back up to temperature. Unfortunately, this can cancel out any savings achieved by lowering of the temperature.
While we recommend yearly maintenance plans, if you haven’t had your heating unit checked in a while it’s a good idea to do so now; especially if you heat with gas, propane, or oil. Cracked heat exchangers found in furnaces are a major contributor to carbon monoxide poisoning in homes. Having a professional come out to verify that your heating system is safe will give you and your family peace of mind and ensure you enjoy a safe, healthy, and comfortable home.
G+S Heating Air Energy Services
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