Living in Minnesota, you want your furnace to work hard throughout the winter to keep the chill from creeping in. But you don’t want it to work too hard. The harder your furnace works, the higher your energy bills climb. So what can you do to get the most warmth out of your furnace without racking up a monthly energy bill that makes you shiver in your slippers? Follow these five tips to maximize your furnace efficiency this season.
1. Insulate, insulate, insulate.
When you’re paying good money to fill your home with heat, the last thing you want is for that heat to escape. Insulation is the barrier that keeps the heat inside your home where it belongs. Assess your insulation levels to ensure your furnace isn’t working extra hard to compensate for heat that dissipates through insufficient insulation. Don’t forget to inspect the insulation on your ductwork. Up to 20% of your warm air can be lost through improperly sealed ducts. A HVAC professional can inspect your ducting for leaks.
2. Inspect doors and windows.
Windows and doors let in rays of sunlight that can warm our hearts if not our skin, but they can also let in drafts of cold air and let out the precious warm air your furnace worked so hard to produce. To determine whether your doors and windows are sabotaging your warm haven, stand near the door to see if you feel a draft. If there’s cold air coming in, you can be sure that warm air is also getting out. You may need to replace your door with a more efficient model and cover windows with heavy curtains to help insulate them.
3. Don’t waste heat.
If there are rooms in your house that you don’t use much, don’t waste the energy to heat them. Close vents in these rooms to redirect your warm airflow to where it’s really needed. As you’re closing unneeded vents, take the opportunity to make sure all active vents are open and unobstructed so that heated air can circulate freely.
4. Turn down the thermostat.
This may seem counterproductive when you’re trying to keep your home toasty warm, but turning down your thermostat a couple degrees won’t be hugely noticeable. It will, however, make a noticeable difference in your heating bill. Lowering the temperature even one degree can save up to 4% on your energy costs! So throw a sweatshirt on, bundle up in some woolly socks, and savor those savings like a warm cup of cocoa.
The better care you take of your furnace, the more efficiently it will run. Change your air filter monthly to maximize furnace performance, and don’t neglect to schedule annual inspections with a heating professional. They’ll be able to spot red flags and recommend when you’re better off upgrading rather than paying for another costly repair.
Ready to schedule this season’s furnace tune-up? Call Bonfe today.