You’re all ready for your guests to surrender their coats and reveal this year’s crazy holiday sweaters. You’ve spent time and effort on fantastic decorations and tasty food favorites and beverages. You want to hold memorable get-togethers that will be fun for everyone.
An HVAC disaster is probably nowhere on your list of holiday entertainments. Neither are complaints that rooms are too cold, too hot, or just plain stuffy and uncomfortable. To ensure they stay off the list, we’re offering a few tips and some pre-holiday food for thought that can not only increase your home's comfort but also curb your heating and cooling costs year-round.
Install a Smart Thermostat
Thanks to Wi-Fi and smart thermostat technology, you can control your home’s temperature through your smartphone. And it can be password-secure from visitors who might want to crank up the heat or cool things down. Other benefits include:
- It can learn your daily scheduling preferences for heating and cooling
- It can respond automatically when you’re homeward-bound thanks to geofencing technology
- You can track your usage data over time and seasons
- Periodic updates will keep your unit functioning at optimal energy-saving efficiency
Considering that the Department of Energy estimates that you can save as much as 10 percent on annual heating and cooling costs by keeping thermostats a few degrees shy of perfect comfort while you’re not home, a smart thermostat is a smart investment.
Use System Zoning for Custom Climate Control
Zone control systems can be energy savers especially in large homes or homes with areas of varying use. With zoning, you can control the temperature in a particular room or space without affecting the rest of the house.
- For holiday entertaining, keep the kitchen or common entertaining areas cooler but your master suite at a cozy temperature for bedtime.
- Reserve energy use in workrooms, basements or additions for times when you're actually occupying those areas.
- Zoning allows that kind of customization and significant energy savings. In fact, a University of Virginia study on room-level zoning estimated savings of up to 20 percent over a single-zoned thermostat.
Schedule an HVAC Tune-up
Your system may run, but does it heat as efficiently as it should? Time and usage take their toll. A seasonal tune-up will...
- Ensure that your system works properly
- Cleans system components
- Replaces limited-use components like filters and belts
- Checks connections for performance and safety
- Corrects mechanical and electrical issues before they become a problem
Enrolling in an annual maintenance plan ensures that you won’t forget about regular tune-ups and that you’ll get priority service if something does go wrong.
Change Your Air filter Regularly
One of the simplest and least expensive actions that you can take to ensure that your HVAC system will continue to work properly is to change its air filters regularly. Usually, you’ll have one filter per zone. The filters are vital for catching and preventing dust, pet hair and other dirt from entering the system.
- Accumulations on a dirty filter can block airflow
- Clogged filters force system components to work harder to draw air
- The air that they do draw is often unfiltered, containing particles and contaminants that can clog machinery and stress the system
Replacing dirty filters with clean ones can cut your energy consumption by 5 to 15 percent according to the Department of Energy's Energy Saver program. You can keep those savings by continuing to replace your filters monthly. Filters don’t have to be expensive. They just need to fit and be clean.
Have Your Ducts Sealed and Cleaned
In forced-air systems, ductwork carries warmed or cooled air throughout your home. According to Energy Star estimates, you could be losing as much as 20 to 30 percent of that warm or cool air due to leaks. A simple inspection can identify areas in need of repair or upgrades, from holes in ductwork to gaps behind registers.
Along with repair, you may also want to have your ductwork cleaned, especially if you’ll have guests who are sensitive to allergies. Ducts can harbor an assortment of accumulations that, over time, can impact your home’s air quality and scent: Have your ducts cleaned to remove...
- Dust from everyday living, remodeling or sanding projects
- Debris from insects or vermin
- Animal hair and dander
A properly sealed, clean, secure duct system ensures you’ll have the best air quality for your home for years to come.
A Comfortable Home With Kern Heating
A well-maintained, up-to-date HVAC system can give the gift of comfort throughout the holiday season and beyond. To schedule an appointment with Kern Heating and Cooling call (847) 383-0350.