Learning as much as you can about heating your home effectively and economically is an important step toward keeping more of your hard-earned money in your pocket. You can significantly reduce your expenditures on utility bills by preserving heat within your home and ensuring your system is running at optimal efficiency while producing it.
Why It Matters
The harder your system has to work at heating your home, the more it will cost you by the time the season is over. Also, if you can’t lock in the heat within your residence, you’ll end up using your HVAC system more than you expected to. This can cost you money in two ways. For starters, you’ll have to run your heating system much more often, which means using more energy and paying more for it. Secondly, your system will incur more cumulative wear and tear, which will lead to repairs or a replacement down the road sooner than necessary. In other words, you’ll be paying more each month to decrease the longevity of your equipment.
Your Windows Can Help Heat Your Home
You want to use your heating system when you need it most, and you don’t want it to be on all the time. During the day, it’s a good idea to open up all of your curtains, blinds and other window coverings to allow natural sunlight in. However, if you have energy-efficient windows, your home may not heat up as well when you use this method.
The sun warms up surfaces through radiant heating, which means objects are heated directly when the sun’s rays touch them. Even if your windows don’t heat up, the items in the home will, which will cause the surrounding air to heat up, too. If your windows are older, you might find that they heat up to an extent, but this can vary widely depending on the temperature outside. When windows heat up, the air within the home will correspondingly rises in temperature.
Utilize Your Blinds
If you don’t want to roll your blinds all the way up, you can turn them so they face upward toward the ceiling of the room. This will help the heat to rise into the home. Although, you may want to close them at night, keep them turned the same way to prevent warm air from escaping between the blinds and the windows.
Your Ceiling Fans Can Help Your Home Feel Warmer
Adjusting your ceiling fans to rotate the opposite way during the colder months helps to circulate warm air toward the floor instead of allowing it to stay up near the ceiling. By using your ceiling fan in conjunction with your heating system to distribute warm air, you can avoid the necessity of setting your thermostat to a higher temperature in order to effectively heat your home. You can employ the same method in the summertime to achieve a cooling effect and save on energy costs as well.
Increasing Air Ventilation Maximizes Heat in Your Home
When you do have your heater on, it’s important to allow the heat to circulate efficiently. Make sure that your furniture is not crowding any vents. Blocked vents prevent the air from circulating and keep the home from heating up efficiently. It’s important to keep furniture a minimum of 18 inches from vents.
Cleaning Ducts and Replacing Filters Increases Warm Airflow
In addition to freeing up all vents in your home, it’s important to make sure that your ducts and filters are clean. This will help improve airflow, and it will also help to reduce the allergens within your home.
Consider Other Ways to Warm Your Home
Your central heating system isn’t the only source of warmth in your residence, and all the others should be factored in. For instance, think about how using a hair dryer in the morning can warm up a bathroom. Many electronic devices create a fair amount of heat. In fact, it’s a good idea to keep the area where they’re used cool enough for their efficient operation.
Of course, the greatest source of auxiliary heat in a home is usually the kitchen. Just cooking dinner can help warm the house. If you like to bake, the oven is a major source of heat. You could probably lower the thermostat on an afternoon when you’re baking pies. A fresh batch of cookies can make a home feel cozier in more than one way.
Heating Your Home Efficiently Requires Preserving the Warmth
Despite heating your home efficiently, you must also preserve the heat within it, which will reduce the need for you to use your heater. Once you’ve paid to produce warmth, you don’t want it to escape easily. There are various ways to achieve this.
Insulation Helps to Keep the Heat In
Many homes don’t have sufficient insulation. There are several zones in the United States, and in each one, a minimum amount of insulation is suggested for a residence. The R-value recommendation will also differ for walls, crawlspaces, attics, etc. Home insulation not only helps you preserve heat in the winter but also helps you retain cool air during the summer months.
Don’t Forget to Seal Your Home
It’s a good idea to winterize your home as well. You can seal your windows with special kits that are designed to prevent your home from leaking warm air. Clear plastic adheres to the perimeter of each window and is virtually invisible. You can also opt for new, more efficient windows, which will minimize leakage of warm air to the exterior.
Of course, windows aren’t the only source of heat loss. Check to see if your doors need weatherstripping. You should also inspect the premises for any gaps. You’ll often find these around electrical outlets, for example.
Regular Maintenance Increases Efficiency
As wonderful as all these tips are at increasing efficiency and preserving heat within the home, they won’t measure up if your heating system isn’t running at optimal levels. To ensure that your equipment is functioning at maximum efficiency, your system needs regular attention in the form of tune-ups and repairs. Routine maintenance from competent professionals helps ensure that efficiency.
Many people are unaware of this, but you should have your HVAC system inspected twice a year. You need to have it checked before the onset of the colder months and again before the summer begins. Scheduling regular preventative maintenance can help to avoid major problems and maximize the longevity of the equipment. Keeping all the components inspected, cleaned and calibrated properly is the most energy-efficient strategy you can adopt. You need professional assistance for this, and the team from Woodward Heating is at your disposal anywhere in the Salem area.
Your Home Comfort Resource
To increase the efficiency of your home’s heating system or discuss any of these other topics, you should contact Woodward Heating in Salem, OR, today. We perform a complete range of heating and cooling repairs, maintenance and installation. In addition, you can rely on us for ductless services, fireplace repair, gas piping, indoor air quality services, thermostat upgrades and more. Our experts perform both residential and commercial services. We know how to keep your home consistently comfortable throughout the year.