It’s that time of year again in the South when the climate cannot make up its mind. One day we’ll be in a heat advisory, and the next it could be a cool, fall day. With the season changes, it may also be hard to check on your appliances and program your HVAC system.
When it comes to your heating and cooling system, there are some guidelines to assist you ease into the fall and winter seasons. First, by placing a programmable thermostat in your home, you can reduce the energy bills and raise the comfort level year round. A programmable thermostat will allow you to alter the temperature based on the time of day, according to your needs.
Another efficient method to save cash and maintain your heating and cooling system to operate effectively year round is with regular checkups on the appliances. Through servicing your HVAC on a regular basis, your local specialist can repair any minor problems with the system before they become larger, costly issues. At Progressive Heating and Air, we recommend having your system serviced at the end of each season.
Preventative Maintenance Tips for your HVAC System
Taking care of your home’s HVAC system does not have to be hard or expensive. Follow these preventive maintenance tips to help improve comfort and reduce energy costs:
Always keep the furnace filter clean. A filter that is clogged creates the heating system to perform harder, reducing its lifespan. Replacing the filter once a month in the winter is highly recommended.
Keep the exterior condenser clean. Ensure that no snow, leaves, shrubs or other debris is cleared away at all times.
If your furnace is vented at the side of the house, make sure to keep ice from storing in the vent and shovel the areas surrounding the vent.
A call to your local expert can keep your appliances operating efficiently for years to come. A professional will be able to inspect any possible issues and have the ability to solve them before they get worse. For more information, contact Progressive Heating and Air today at 770-253-2665, or schedule online!
The following tips will save you energy and help your budget as the weather cools down.
- Insulate or increase the amount of insulation in your attic, basement and outside walls. Also cover through-the-wall air conditioners to prevent cold air from leaking into your home.
- Reducing air leaks could cut 10 percent from an average household’s monthly energy bill. The most common places where air escapes homes are: floors, walls, ceilings, ducts, fireplaces, plumbing penetrations, doors, windows, fans, vents and electrical outlets.
- Keep shades and curtains open during the day on the south side of your home to allow solar heating. Close them at night to retain heat.
- Don’t block your radiators or heating vents with furniture or draperies. Keep your radiators, registers and baseboard heaters dirt and dust free. Close vents and doors in unused rooms.
- Have your heating system serviced once a year and regularly replace furnace filters. During the heating season, change or clean furnace filters once a month.
- Close the fireplace damper when not in use.
Save 10% on your service by scheduling online today.
Part Five of our commonly asked heating questions, this time about thermostats – feel free to comment with anything that you have to ask!
Which type of thermostat should I have in my home?
– Programmable thermostats will save energy when properly used. Most are very easy to operate and some will control other equipment like humidifiers, HRV air exchangers and give filter change reminders. A digital thermostat starts low and has many levels of value depending on the features chosen.
I have an old furnace, would changing the thermostat do anything for us?
– Actually, the older thermostats are usually three to four degrees out in temperatures where as teh new digital thermostats are right on with accuracy! You should still consider upgrading your thermostat no matter how old your furnace is, this will help with efficiency of your existing unit. Digital thermostats are very affordable.
A thermostat is pretty easy to change – can’t I do it myself?
– You are much better off to have a qualified installer change it out. Thermostats are designed with built in variables this way the installer can set the thermostat up to your furnace as there are many furnaces out there, such as oil, propane, gas, old, new, etc. During the heating season and especially when the box malls have a sale on programmable thermostats, we have an excess of calls where this exact situation has occurred and transformers are being blown up on the furnace due to incorrect installations. This expense is much greater than the service call you will pay to have it properly installed and checked for proper operation.
How do the thermostats at the hardware stores compare to the ones you sell? Is there really a difference?
– There are several varieties of programmable thermostats on the market today. The big box stores have companies manufacture thermostats just for them so they may charge a cheaper price for the same name but different product. These thermostats often come without batteries and limited functions. The thermostats we sell are very dependable with options built in that let the user configure the thermostats to their home, not what the hardware store thinks your house is. Your home is different and unique from others and therefore needs to be treated that way to maintain comfort for the occupants.
If you like programmable thermostats, you’ll LOVE this one. For our final indoor air quality week in February, we bring you Honeywell‘s Prestige 2.0 Comfort System.
|Prestige 2.0® Comfort System
- If your unit is not turning on, check your circuit breaker. Test them and reset – see if that makes a difference
- • Make sure your thermostat is set to the proper setting [cool in summer, heat in winter]. Check to see what temperature you have set your thermostat to kick on. Some thermostats will not kick on unless the temperature is outside of a two degree differential.
- If your thermostat screen is blank – check the batteries, change them out.
- Check your filter – if the filter is clogged, you are restricting air flow which will damage your system. Standard filters should be changed monthly, other filters – ask your HVAC company [that’s us!].
- Make sure your air is not escaping through doors, windows, fireplace – even your attic…make sure all openings are tightly sealed. •
- Preventative maintenance is the key to your unit running more efficiently. Make sure you have your thermostat checked and calibrated at that time.
- Keep your doors and registers open as much as possible. A properly installed and balanced HVAC system is designed to deliver and return hot or cold air evenly to and from all rooms in your home. Closing doors and shutting vents can cause certain rooms to become hotter and colder than others and decreases the units efficiency.
- Programmable thermostats can match your lifestyle while running your unit efficiently, if used correctly. You can program the temperature you want for up to seven days. This allows you to get the temperature you want, when you want at maximum efficiency.
- AFUE is the abbreviation for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency ratio. AFUE is used to rate furnace efficiencies by dividing the ratio of heat output by heat input. This measurement describes how well fuel, gas or oil is consumed to produce heat by a furnace. As the AFUE rate increases, the efficiency of your furnace also increases, lowering your fuel costs.