Whether you own a 1,000 square foot one-story or a 4,000 square foot townhouse, heating efficiency is a concern all homeowners should be aware of — especially as the winter months cause temperatures to flatline. Modern technology has enabled houses to shield their inhabitants from the chilly outside air with furnaces, heaters and other tools, but none of these essential features come free.
If you’re one of the thousands of homeowners who worry about their heating and air efficiency in Salt Lake City, you’re not alone. Every year, houses across the state suffer from inflated costs due to inefficient heating: An issue that can often be solved with a few simple steps.
Don’t worry; we’re here to help. Stay tuned as we cover the truth about heating efficiency and give you guidelines for how to survive the next winter season.
The Importance of Heating Efficiency: It’s More Than Money
The concept of keeping heat from escaping a home sounds simple enough, yet it’s one that many struggle to follow year-round. While your house may warm up even with a few leaks, you’ll be paying the price in the long run if you don’t regularly work with an HVAC services provider in Salt Lake City to examine the quality of your heating — literally.
Some common side effects of low heating efficiency include:
- Larger Energy Bills: If your heating system is able to sneak out of your home’s walls, it can take more than twice the effort to increase temperatures and avoid the blistering cold. As a result, your energy bills will suffer the consequences if the problem isn’t taken care of quickly.
- Reduced Comfort: In addition to snatching a few extra dollars from your bank account, low heating efficiency can make your home an uncomfortable place to stay. Escaped heat means longer wait times between temperature changes on your thermostat, causing the warmth to go everywhere except where it’s needed most.
- Year-round Troubles: In some cases, low heating efficiency means your home also has troubles elsewhere. If you have leaks or a faulty thermostat, you’ll be facing the same issues when summer comes around; only this time, you’ll be battling the heat rather than fighting to keep it inside.
As daunting as these factors may be, homeowners can still follow various methods to keep their energy efficiency in check. From furnace repair to heating and air services, Salt Lake City has a variety of providers who can help you with virtually any heating-related issue.
No matter what kind of home you own, following these crucial steps can ensure you stay warm and snug during winter — without your wallet hurting because of it.
1. Take Advantage of Insulation
Your home’s heating systems work hard to provide you with warm air, so why not ensure it actually stays inside and not out?
When it comes to heat loss, inadequate insulation is one of the largest offenders — and one of the most difficult to notice. If you lead a busy life, it can be easy to accidentally lose track of the quality of your insulation, resulting in reduced heat efficiency.
Keep these tips in mind to prevent warm air from escaping your home:
- Examine Locations Prone to Air Leaks: Door and window frames are some of the most common locations for air leaks, but virtually any part of your home with penetrations could be a contender (i.e., holes for electrical wiring, plumbing, etc.). Install weather strips on doors, skylights, windows and other spots to prevent leaks and check up on them regularly.
- Pay Attention to Ductwork: Your home’s duct seams and connections need to be as tight as possible to prevent air leakage. Ensure these locations are fastened closely with clamps or screws and sealed securely.
- Don’t Ignore the Attic: Even if you don’t spend much time in it, your attic can be a significant cause of heat inefficiency. To upgrade your insulation, install fiberglass batts or blown-in cellulose throughout your attic space to seal in the air.
If these projects sound out of your league, connect with your local Salt Lake City HVAC services provider to ensure the job is done right.
2. Replace Your Furnace Filter
Aside from reducing your home’s heating efficiency, a filthy furnace filter will significantly diminish your air’s purity and can even cause health issues if left untreated. Operating as your first line of defense against dust, airborne allergens and other particles, regularly replacing your filter should be a top priority when it comes to your home’s overall wellness.
Don’t know how often to replace your filter? Make a note of these general guidelines:
- Basic Fiberglass: Replace every one to two months.
- Paper: Replace every four months to a year.
- Electrostatic: Replace every several years and clean every four to six weeks.
Keep in mind that smoking, pets, extended fan usage and more can make a filter grow dirtier faster, so it’s always a good idea to check yours regularly.
3. Consider a Furnace Tune-up or Replacement
Often, low heating efficiency can simply be due to a decrepit furnace. While this prospect can be frightening for owners, it could be the difference between wasting thousands on unnecessary energy usage and saving that money with a one-time repair.
Here are some tips for determining whether or not your Salt Lake City home requires a furnace repair or tune-up:
- Loud Noises: If your furnace is making rattling, screeching, popping or humming noises, it could be time to switch it out for a new one.
- Frequent Temperature Fluctuations: If you’ve already followed the two steps mentioned earlier and still suffer from heating inefficiency, your furnace could be at fault.
- Flame Color: In general, an efficient furnace produces blue flames, while an old one produces yellow flames — and carbon monoxide. Keep an eye out for color changes!
- Age: Conventional gas furnaces usually last from 15 to 20 years. If your furnace is reaching the end of its lifespan, consider replacing it before any issues can emerge.
Call us at (801) 477–5818 or Visit our website 1st American Plumbing, Heating & Air for help with any of your furnace or a/c unit inspected or repaired.
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