When it comes to heating and cooling your home, you often don’t think about the basics of keeping everything up and running. You pay your bills each month without questioning the cost, but could you be running a more energy efficient system? Not only is this good for your bank balance, but it is excellent for the environment too. Increasing the energy efficiency of your system can be achieved in a number of ways. Firstly, you might want to seek out a home energy assessment so that a professional can see if there are any leaks or gaps in the system. Before discussing some useful tips on improving the energy efficiency of your heating and cooling system, it is important to understand the basics of how these products operate.

 

How Do Heating and Cooling Systems Operate?

Every type of heating and cooling system consists of three simple elements. They all have a source of cooled or warmed air, a way of spreading this air to the appropriate rooms and a control to keep the system regulated. Both warm and cool air sources in your home will tend to use the same distribution systems, so all air will flow through the same ducts and be controlled by your thermostat.

 

Gas vs Electric Furnace

Gas Furnace

PROs
  • Lower fuel costs
  • Lasts up to 20 years
  • Higher heat efficient
  • Better for colder climates
CONs
  • More expensive and complicated installation
  • Carbon monoxide safety concerns
  • Needs regular professional maintenance
  • Makes more noise than an electric furnace

 

Electric Furnace

PROs
  • Cheaper and easier installation
  • Easier maintenance
  • Safer and quieter
  • Lasts up to 30 years
  • Better for warmer climates
CONs
  • Higher fuel costs
  • Less heat efficient

 

Why Do Breakdowns Occur?

If your heating or cooling system breaks down, it means that one or more of the three simple elements might be the root of the issue. All systems operate under the basic objective that the heat tends to move from one warm object to another cool one. Heaters will add warmth to your air, whereas air conditioners will remove this heat.

 

4 Most Common Problems

  1. Dirty or Clogged Air Filters
  2. Thermostat Malfunctions
  3. Leaking Refrigerant
  4. Lack of Preventative Maintenance

 

Powering Heating and Cooling Units 

Every single heating and cooling unit will burn fuel; some use up gas and oil, whereas others use electricity. It is even possible to power heating and air conditioning systems through solar energy. As the fuel is burned heat is produced and distributed to the various areas throughout your home (via ducts or pipes). The air is then blown through radiators or panels so that the room heats or cools to the desired temperature.

 

Air conditioner Power Usage (Rough estimates in watts):

  • Central Air Conditioner – 3500 Watts
  • Central A/C Fan Only – Compressor Off – 750 Watts
  • Largest Window Units – 1440 Watts
  • Medium Window Unit – 900 Watts
  • Smallest Window Unit – 500 Watts

 

Heating and Cooling Efficiency

Did you know you are using over 50% of the energy in your home to heat and cool it? New systems are always coming into play, but it is important to understand how you can reduce your bills significantly. You can be spending less on heating and cooling your home with an with an energy efficient system. By reducing your energy consumption you easily cut down on your household bills.

 

Assessing Energy Efficiency in your Heating and Cooling System

There are several ways to find out how efficient your current system is. You can use these tools and indications to discover the efficiency of your particular model.

  • Check the Energy Star Logo
    • On every heating and cooling system there will be a logo which shows the product meets specific energy efficient criteria. These legislations are set by the Environmental Protection Agency, so are accurate with their guidelines.
  • Look at The EnergyGuide Label
    • Wherever you purchase your heating and cooling system, you should be able to find out how much energy the model uses. You should also be able to compare and contrast it to different brands when you buy it from the supplier. This might be detailed in a pamphlet or fact sheet; if you can’t find this information you should be able to ask the supplier directly for this as it is a rule set by the FTC.
  • More Ways to Save Energy
    • One of the best ways to save on your heating and cooling systems is to get a professional home assessment. This will outline how efficient your system is at the moment and the areas in which you might be wasting energy. Check in with a reputable company such as Kaiser Air Conditioning and you will soon gain a deeper insight into where your money is going.
    • During a professional assessment of your home, the inspector will use specialized equipment to see if there are any energy leakages. Although you can carry out assessments yourself at home, it is always best to seek advice from an expert.
    • Once your assessment has been carried out, you might want to take action by insulating areas of your home. Sealing air leaks around your doors and windows will help to contain the energy. You should also check for any gaps and holes in ducts; a professional will be able to fix these efficiently for you.
  • Always Be Aware
    • Your small energy savings can add up significantly over time, so it is important to be mindful of what is happening in your home. As the seasons change it is important to change the settings on your thermostat; you can buy automatic models which adjust the temperatures for you. Keep an eye on your filters too as they will need replacing and cleaning on a regular basis.

 

Things to Remember About Your Heating and Cooling Systems

It is true that many of us take heating and cooling as a given; our systems are always expect to function properly and provide us with the right needs for our household. The truth is that you need to take action when something isn’t quite right. Contact us today for professional advice and preventative measures for your heating and cooling system.  We will help will help your heating and cooling system carry on working efficiently for as long as possible. (805) 988-1800