We can all benefit from saving money from time to time. One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is by making some energy-efficient changes throughout your home. Upgrading your HVAC system or putting in a smart thermostat, for example, provides more control over your HVAC equipment, contributing to a more energy-efficient home and savings on your monthly energy bills.  

Keep reading to learn more about 4 ways you can make energy-efficient home improvements. 

 1. Install a Smart Thermostat  

If you still use an older thermostat and access it manually, consider taking a step toward the future by installing a smart, or Wi-Fi, thermostat – which comes with numerous features to improve your home's energy efficiency. 

The functionality homeowners like the most is having the capability to access their smart thermostats from anywhere they want with their smartphone or other smart device. As an example, when you forget to adjust your thermostat before leaving for vacation, you can simply take out your smartphone and make any needed adjustments.  

Like a programmable thermostat, a smart thermostat permits you to set up a schedule for your home’s temperature according to the time of day and day of the week so you’re not spending energy on an empty house. Smart thermostats also feature the capacity to learn your temperature preferences over time and automatically make energy-efficient adjustments. They can even create monthly energy reports that demonstrate how much energy you’re using and when so you can make adjustments to cut costs.  

If you’re wondering how to get a free smart thermostat, ask your utility company to find out if there are any discounts or free smart thermostats available to you. 

2. HVAC Tune Ups 

Unfortunately, many homeowners often forget about having their heating and cooling systems maintained. While this might not seem like a huge deal, inadequate maintenance could produce a number of issues, including inefficiency, breakdowns, and a shorter system lifespan. 

With an HVAC maintenance service, the technician should inspect your HVAC system, clean key components, and identify minor issues before they create bigger, more expensive repair issues. Maintenance can keep HVAC systems functioning at optimal condition, which means less energy is needed to heat and cool your home. This will reduce your energy bills, expand the lifespan of HVAC equipment, and contribute to fewer repairs. 

We encourage two HVAC tune ups every year – once during the spring before summer and again in the fall before the arrival of winter weather. 

3. Getting rid of Your Old, Inefficient HVAC Equipment 

Unfortunately, like every appliance, HVAC systems have a shelf life and eventually need to be replaced. Modern heaters and cooling products are much more effective than models manufactured just over 10 years ago. Fortunately, helpful HVAC companies like Childress Heating & AC can perform professional services such as furnace installation in .  

Well-maintained furnaces and air conditioners can run for about 15-20 years. If your systems are within that span, it is often be a good idea to replace them early to avoid untimely breakdowns that can leave you cold and uncomfortable if it’s a cold winter night. If your system is around 15 years old and requires an expensive repair, it’s definitely time to replace it. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, installing a new HVAC system could save you between 20-40% on your monthly energy bills, so you’ll recover some of the costs of installing a new system. 

 A professional HVAC technician can help you find the most energy efficient HVAC system available. In general, seek out HVAC systems that are Energy Star certified, meaning the equipment meets firm guidelines established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. LENNOX HVAC systems can be some of the most efficient systems around, offering both high AFUE and SEER ratings. AFUE is for heating systems and illustrates how well they convert fuel to heat. SEER, meanwhile, is used to measure the energy efficiency of cooling equipment.  

Contact a reputable HVAC provider like Childress Heating & AC for air conditioning installation in . 

 4. Use Energy-Efficient Air Filters 

If you’re looking for new HVAC filters, remember that not all air filters are capable of providing the same results. Certain air filters are far more effective than others, leading to lower energy bills and a clean home. 

The effectiveness of HVAC air filters is scored by their Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV rating. The MERV scale ranges from 1-20; the higher the number, the more effective the filters are. It’s worthwhile to note, though, that high-efficiency air filters can actually impede airflow too much based on the type of HVAC system you have. It’s beneficial to review the owner’s manual before getting a filter to find the right one for your system.