If you are looking to save money and reduce your family’s energy consumption this winter, a heating or cooling system upgrade can be a great place to start. In 2009 alone, the average home spent more than $1000.00 on heating and cooling according to Energy Star, which is a division of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Energy Department. Power Plants are continually burning fossil fuels to generate energy, and high energy consumption contributes to the addition of greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere, as well as costing YOU money! Thankfully, HVAC systems are Consistently being improved upon, and an upgrade can really help your household become more environmentally friendly AND financially responsible!
Step 1: Selecting A System
Shopping for an energy efficient HVAC system can be a daunting task! Fortunately, the kindly folk at the Department of Energy are here to help. They have put together an EXTENSIVE list of information to help you select the right Heating and Cooling system for your home. Of course, it is possible to install any type of system in any type of home, but the Department of Energy wants to stress to you the importance of considering both cost, and aesthetics. Furthermore, there are a number of modifications that could be made to your home in order to maximize its efficiency. A couple of examples might be improved ventilation or ductwork, and passive solar heating. Consider also things such as your local climate and the power sources that are most easily accessible to you. The Department of Energy suggests that you reach out to a reputable contracting company to help you design your system.
If you are considering a new HVAC system, This Efficient House is here to help! Our staff of local, professional experts can evaluate any home to help you design the most energy efficient HVAC system that is right for YOU. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!
Step 2: Heating Systems
Resistance baseboard heaters, central heating, and water-based heaters are among the most efficient types of heating systems. They all can be powered by electricity that is generated by solar panels or alternative types of energy, but because Resistance baseboard heating is cost prohibitive, Central heating with a furnace or boiler is by far the most cost-effective and most common method of heating your home. This Efficient House specializes in high-efficiency furnace replacement. The city of Fort Collins, or your local energy provider may even offer rebates which incentivize an energy-efficient revamp of your heating system. Contact info@thisefficienthouse for more details regarding the Fort Collins or Xcel Energy rebate programs.
Active and passive solar heating systems require no energy to run but are often employed as supplementary systems due to the fact that they only work while the sun shines.
Step 3: Cooling Systems
Surprisingly, Air Conditioning is almost never the most energy efficient way to cool your home. The Energy Department recommends a combination of proper insulation and shading as well as well-designed ventilation and weatherization improvements. A whole house fan, when properly used, combined with the right insulation and shading techniques are a powerful combination to keep your home cool and comfortable during the long summer months, and can cool homes in all but the hottest of climates with very little energy use. If you live in a hot, dry climate, consider an evaporative or “swamp” cooler, which can provide significant cooling with a much lower draw than an air conditioner. If you do decide that an air conditioner is the best option for your family, be sure to choose a modern, energy-efficient model that is the right size and speed to maximize the cooling-efficiency of your home. For more information about how to cool your home while maintaining your budget, contact the professionals at This Efficient House to schedule your free consultation.
Step 4: Sizing Your System
By far the most common mistake that people make when installing an HVAC system is choosing a system that is TOO large and TOO powerful. Running a furnace or air conditioner that is too large for the space can waste TONS of energy and costs YOU lots of extra cash! The more loosely constructed buildings of the past could cause significant heat transfer, which meant that heating and cooling systems had to work much harder. However, if your home is properly insulated and weatherized, a large HVAC system is unnecessary, and can actually be the CAUSE of discomforts such as temperature swings, higher energy bills and maintenance costs. A reputable contractor can help you find the perfect system for your home: one that can keep you comfortable without costing you too much money. When working with any HVAC contractor, be sure to stress that you do NOT want an oversized system.
Hopefully, these tips and tricks provide you with a few points to think about if you are considering an upgrade to a more energy-efficient HVAC system. For more information, or to schedule an appointment, please contact This Efficient House, your local, dependable home energy efficiency experts!
Until next time, have a great weekend, and take care out there in the snow!