Best Energy Saving Tips for 2016 Recently, a customer asked me, “What do you considered to be the best energy saving ideas for 2016?” There are varieties of answers to the 2016 energy saving items. Here are my top six energy saving tips for 2016.
Properly Functioning HVAC Equipment
Your furnace and AC systems are key functions in energy savings. If your system is over ten years old, you should seriously consider investing in a new high efficiency system. Technology has come a long way. Older systems have about 80% efficient. Newer systems can provide as high as 97% efficiency. Twenty percent difference involves many energy dollars!
No matter what the age of your HVAC system, you must maintain it. This means changing filters at least twice a year. Having your system serviced by a certified HVAC personnel at least annually. It just makes sense that you keep the engine that drives your energy consumption in good working condition. This maintenance effort can be a very cost effective way to save energy dollars in 2016.
Controlling the Temperature
Lowering your thermostat by 2% can save you up to 10% on your 2016 monthly energy bills. There are varieties of ways you can control the temperature. Lowering the thermostat at night or lowering it when the home is vacant is a great start. Many people find it useful to use zone heating. Closing off rooms that are not used or using auxiliary small space heaters for specific rooms in the house.
Controlling the temperature is something within your control. Families will different on how much they choose to control the temperatures. Most new furnaces come with a programmable thermostat. You can set it and leave to run on its own so you do not forget about lowering the temperature.
Reduce Your Heat Loss
We lose heat and energy dollars through many avenues. It may be a lack of caulking or weather stripping around windows and doors. It may be single pane windows.
Poor insulation in your attic may allow heat to escape easily from your home. Your use of an open fireplace draws heat from room up the chimney. Traditional fireplaces are an energy loser. It is best not to use them because they pull heated air out of the house and up the chimney. When not in use, make sure the damper is closed.
You need to take an inventory of the openings or poor insulation that is allowing your heat to escape from your home.
Get Additional Energy dollars
Help is available for the purchase of your new heating and cooling system. The federal government, system manufacturers like Bryant and utility companies offers rebates or tax credits to help with the purchase of your heating and cooling systems. Here are four ways you can get others to help with your energy savings.
• Federal Tax Credits for 2015-2016 has been reestablished for 2015 and 2016.
• Bryant Manufacturer offers a variety of heating and cooling rebates
• Utility Rebates—check with your utility dealers to see what rebates and tax credits they offer.
• Energy Star Appliances provide rebates and incentives for purchasing these appliances.
Using a combination of these resources, you can have “others” help you with your energy costs. Click here for more details.
Leaky Ductwork Systems
This is a new energy saver. Your ductwork carries the warm and cool air to the rooms. Traditional these ducts have been seal with tape and clamps. Over 90% of existing buildings in North America have air duct systems that contain small holes and cracks that increase heating and cooling costs. These leaks result in higher energy costs as more air, hot or cool, are need to reach the desired temperature.
A new technology, Aeroseal, now allows us to measure and fix the duct leakage in your home from within the system. A computer test will tell exactly how much air is being lost in the ductwork. Many people are surprised to learn that homes typically leak 30% to 40% or more of their air through air duct leaks.
The Aeroseal air duct sealing system can reduce the amount of leakage by as much as 90%. A series of government reports have shown that air duct sealing can lead to up to $850 in energy savings per year. With the ductwork leaks plugged, your system uses less energy to produce your desired temperature. Call me for more information on this unique energy saving product or check out this new energy saver.
No Cost Energy Savers
Let the sunshine in. Open drapes and let the sun heat your home for free (get them closed again at sundown so they help insulate).
Rearrange your rooms. Move your furniture around so you are sitting near interior walls – exterior walls and older windows are likely to be drafty. Do not sit in the draft.
Install ceiling fans – they circulate the warm air, pulling it away from the ceiling. Remember to change the fan rotation so it is reverse of your summer use.
Wear layers. An extra layer of tights, a thick pair of socks, an additional sweatshirt or a wool beanie on your head can go a long way in retaining your precious body heat. Though exercising may seem more daunting in the winter season, keeping your body active on a regular basis will help keep your body temperature warm.
Now you know my six best energy saving tips for 2016. Implement one or more of them to save on your monthly energy bills.