Are you ready for spring? Better yet, is your HVAC system (and your wallet)? Here are some helpful tips for staying comfortable – while simultaneously saving energy and money – in Northern Virginia’s variable springtime weather.
Install a programmable thermostat. Programmable thermostats are one of the single best (and easiest) ways to save on your heating and cooling costs. By automatically controlling the temperature at different points of the day – when no one is home during the day, for example, or when everyone is asleep at night – you can efficiently conserve vast amounts of energy and save yourself a ton in monthly heating and cooling costs.
Change your air filters – regularly. We’ve said it before, but it really can’t be repeated enough – changing the air filters in your HVAC system is crucial in many ways. Not only does it ensure that the air that you’re breathing is as clean as possible, but it cuts down on the amount of energy that your system has to expend in order to heat or cool your house properly (since dirty or blocked filters require the system to work harder in order to provide the same level of comfort). And most air filters are relatively inexpensive and can be purchased at your local hardware store.
Make sure your doors and windows are sealed. Don’t let hot, humid air seep in from the great outdoors. Check to make sure that your windows are sealed with caulk. Re-caulking is an easy DIY project that can help save you money on cooling costs. Also check the weather stripping around your outside doors. Don’t let the humid Northern Virginia air find its way into your home, and you’ll keep cooling costs down.
Use ceiling fans if you have them. Ceiling fans are a great, low-cost way to circulate the air in your room and cool you down without your having to dial up your A/C.
Move furniture or items that are in the way of your vents. You may not even realize it, but you might be making it harder for your HVAC to do its work if you have a big piece of furniture (a sofa, for example) or something else blocking your vents. Consider shifting your furniture around to give your vents the space to do their thing.