We can all benefit from saving a few bucks from time to time. One of the simplest ways to accomplish this is by improving energy efficiency throughout your home. Upgrading your HVAC equipment or installing a smart thermostat, for example, gives you more control over your heating and cooling system, leading to a more energy-efficient home and more affordable monthly energy bills.  

Continue below to learn about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home improvements. 

 1. Use a Smart Thermostat  

If you still use a round-dial thermostat and access it manually, consider taking a step toward the future by installing a smart, or Wi-Fi, thermostat – which includes numerous features to make your home more energy efficient. 

The function homeowners appreciate the most is having the ability to access their smart thermostats from wherever through their smartphone or other smart device. For example, when you forget to change your thermostat before taking a vacation, you can just use your smartphone and make any needed adjustments.  

Like a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat allows you to pre-set your home’s temperature based on the time of day and day of the week so you’re not spending energy on an empty house. Smart thermostats also have the ability to understand your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient corrections. They also create monthly energy reports that illustrate how much energy you've used and when so you can make adjustments to reduce costs.  

If you’re curious about how to get a free smart thermostat, ask your utility company to find out if there are any discounts or free smart thermostats offered. 

2. Regularly Scheduled Tune-Ups for Your HVAC System 

Regrettably, many homeowners often forget to have their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this might not seem like a problem, inadequate maintenance will sometimes lead to a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan. 

With an HVAC maintenance service, the technician should evaluate your HVAC system, clean important components, and pinpoint minor flaws before they lead to bigger, more expensive repair issues. Maintenance keeps HVAC systems functioning at optimal condition, which means less energy is needed to heat and cool your home. This could also reduce your energy bills, increase the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and lead to fewer repairs. 

We suggest two HVAC tune ups annually – once in the spring before summer and again during the fall before the arrival of winter weather. 

3. Replacing Your Worn-Down, Inefficient HVAC Equipment 

Unfortunately, like all appliances, HVAC systems have a shelf life and eventually need to be replaced. Newer heaters and cooling products are much more efficient than units produced just over a decade ago. Luckily, quality HVAC companies like Edington Heating & Cooling Inc can offer professional services such as furnace installation in Troy.  

Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can run for approximately 15-20 years. If the equipment is within that span, it might be a good idea to replace them ahead of time to minimize the risk of premature equipment failure that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your system is around 15 years old and needs an expensive repair, it’s almost always time to replace the unit. Per the U.S. Department of Energy, getting a new HVAC system could save you approximately 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll recoup some of the costs of installing a new system. 

 A professional heating and cooling technician can help you identify the most energy efficient HVAC system available. In general, look for HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, meaning the equipment fulfills strict guidelines made by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems can be some of the most efficient systems on the market, boasting both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is for heating systems and measures how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, on the other hand, is used to quantify the efficiency of air conditioning systems.  

Call a reputable HVAC provider like Edington Heating & Cooling Inc for air conditioning installation in Troy. 

 4. Look for High Efficiency Air Filters 

If you’re searching for new HVAC filters, keep in mind that not all air filters are capable of providing the same results. Certain air filters are far more efficient than others, contributing to lower energy bills and a clean home. 

The effectiveness of HVAC air filters is scored by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges between 1-20; the higher the number, the more efficient the filters are. It’s worthwhile to note, however, that high-efficiency air filters can actually impede airflow too much according to the type of HVAC system you have. It’s worthwhile to study the owner’s manual before buying a filter to determine the ideal model for your system.