Improve Your Home’s Heating Efficiency

November 20, 2020

Your home has a heating and cooling system. However, not all heating systems are efficient. If you have drafty rooms and windows, you could be spending more money on your heating costs. With efficient heating, you’ll stay comfortable throughout the season as you enjoy reasonable energy costs for the winter. Here are a few ways to improve the efficiency of your home’s heating system.

Do You Have an Efficient Heating System?

It can be confusing to measure the heating efficiency in your home. Most systems are measured by the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating. These ratings determine the efficiency of your heating system over the course of a year. However, the AFUE cannot account for the energy lost through windows, doors or other areas of your building. You can buy an energy-efficient product, but you’ll still lose money on your heating bills if you operate the system in a drafty home.

Tips for Better Heating Efficiency

With a few tips, you can boost the heating efficiency of your home. If you’re in the market for a new furnace or boiler, you’ll want to choose the right size for your home. A larger furnace doesn’t always equal a warmer house. You could be spending more money to power a larger unit. Before you make a purchase, you should enlist the help of a professional HVAC technician. A technician can help you find the right-sized heating system for your home.

If your heating system dates back to the 1990s, you need to replace your units. Every year you end up spending more money just to keep it in operation. When you upgrade to a more efficient model, you’ll cut down on your heating costs. Plus, you can find a more environmentally friendly option to heat your home.

Once you’ve found the right system for your home, you can start to improve your heating efficiency. First, you’ll want to keep your heating vents clear from obstructions. If you want balanced heating throughout your home, the heating system needs vents without any blockages. You never want to place furniture over a vent that can block the warm air. Closing vents can cause problems for your system as it disrupts the airflow in your ductwork. Open vents are better for your home’s heating efficiency.

The right insulation is important to the heating efficiency of your home. With proper insulation, the heat will not flow out of your home in the winter. In turn, your home needs less energy to keep your house warm during the cold weather. You can make a quick inspection of your space. If there are any open wall cavities, you can fill them with the right insulation. You might even want to hire a professional energy auditor to see if there are any leaks in your home. Cold air can seep into your home and cause your energy bills to rise. With this audit, you can fix the problem before you waste money on unnecessary heating costs.

Finally, you might not think about it, but the placement of trees and shrubs around your property can improve your heating system. Trees can block the natural sunlight from entering your home, and you need that sunshine to warm up your home in the wintertime. With more sunlight, your boiler or furnace won’t have to work as hard to keep you comfortable.

Air Leaks Impact Your Home’s Heating Efficiency

You’ll need to fix any air leaks throughout your home. In addition to doors and windows, cold air can leak through little nooks and crannies. You’ll want to take your time and find all the sources of drafts in your home.

According to Energy Star, you can lose about 20% to 30% of your heated air through poorly connected ductwork. You might want to check out the ductwork in your attic or basement. If there are gaps or holes in the ducts, they’ll need to be repaired. You may also want to inspect the seams and corners since they can pull apart and lose air.

Improperly installed electrical boxes are another source of air leaks. If you want to stop the leaks, you should remove the cover plates and fill in any small gaps with latex caulk. For larger gaps around the electrical boxes, make sure to use a foaming sealant. Once that’s done, you can replace the cover plate.

You’ll also want to check for any holes in your walls. When gas lines, pipes and electrical cables are installed, the people who installed them might not have sealed around them properly. That poor insulation can mean air leaks and gaps in your home. You need to seal these gaps with expanding foam or caulk.

Inspect Your Hot Water Heater

When you’re ready to boost your home’s heating efficiency, you might not think about the hot water heater. However, these systems can play a significant role in reducing your home’s energy costs. Many people rely on hot water during the winter. If you want a more energy-efficient home, then your hot water heater needs the proper maintenance.

There are several ways to improve the efficiency of your hot water heater. First, you want to turn down the water temperature to 120 degrees. Many heaters are preset to a temperature of 140 degrees. When you drop the heater’s temperature, you can still have hot water and save money on your energy costs.

You might want to add more insulation around your water heater, too. If the outside of your hot water heater feels slightly warm, then it needs more insulation. While water heaters are usually insulated, they’ll lose heat when they’re placed in places that don’t receive much heat—if any—such as a cold basement.

The pipes leading to a hot water heater need to be insulated. Any pipes that appear to be sweating need to have more insulation around them. For the most part, water pipes aren’t insulated, and that can lead to lost heat in your home. When the heat is lost, the hot water heater will have to use more energy and work harder to warm up your water.

With all these steps, you can have a home heating system that’s more efficient. During the wintertime, your heating costs can rise. You don’t want to spend extra money just to stay comfortable throughout the season. By reducing drafts and insulating open spaces, you can create a warm and toasty home in the winter.

Boost Your Home’s Heating Efficiency

If you need help to improve your home’s heating efficiency, make sure to reach out to us. Since 2003, Air Patrol Air Conditioning, Heating & Fireplaces has been serving residential and commercial clients throughout the Dallas area. Our expert technicians are trained to handle repairs, installations and maintenance for heating and cooling systems. We can even help with home energy audits and indoor air quality tests. When you need a heating or cooling service in Dallas, contact the expert team at Air Patrol Air Conditioning, Heating & Fireplaces.