Reducing Heating & Cooling Costs

  • April 1, 2017
  • By: Greenpath Financial Wellness

We’re all looking for those unexpected places where we can save money. If you’re in a pinch, you can save money by reducing  heating and cooling costs in your home. Many people don’t even realize how much of a strain this can place on their budget. Here are a few tips for reducing heating and cooling costs.

Upgrade Your Gear

A thermostat you can program is a great tool for saving money. You can program it around your habits. When you’re home, the house can feel comfortable. But when you’re away, you can program the thermostat to be cooler in the winter and warmer in the summer.  Be careful not to set the thermostat too low if you go on vacation in the winter. You may come home to frozen pipes!

Use the Sun

During the winter, keep the shades open to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home.  During the summer, keep window coverings closed to prevent the sun from warming your house.  The air conditioner or fans won’t have to work as hard to cool the house.  In the summer, try to make sure the air conditioner unit is shaded. That way it won’t have to work as hard. However, you also want to make sure that there is enough space for the air to move around the unit.

Air Flow

Close vents in the basement and in rooms that are not used. You can also close doors on stairwells and rooms on the upper levels to control the flow of air.  Be sure to check furnace filters regularly and replace them as needed. Also, make sure air registers, baseboard heaters, and radiators are not being blocked.

Look for Air Leaks

Look for areas where your house may be leaking. Leaks allow warm air to seep in during the summer, and cold air to enter during the winter. Caulking and weather stripping  leaks will help save money. Some utility companies offer a free energy efficiency breakdown. If yours does, take advantage of this service!

Replace Old Equipment

If your furnace or air conditioner is old, it’s probably far less efficient than newer models.  For example, furnaces manufactured after 1992 must be at least 78 percent efficient in order to meet federal requirements.  Some are even in the 90 percent range.