Spring will soon arrive in Westminster, Maryland. Are you still figuring out how to ease the strain on your utility bills from the recent winter weather? Good news: You can save energy by taking advantage of the warmer weather and preparing your home for summer.
As the temperatures warm up outdoors, you can turn down the temperature on your furnace or boiler and heat your home in other ways. Save energy in your home this spring by reprogramming your thermostat, scheduling HVAC system maintenance, and learning other ways to cut energy costs.
Turn to the Sun
Keeping your curtains and blinds closed during the winter keeps warm air inside your home. As the seasons change, open your window coverings during the day to allow heat from the sun to heat the rooms in your house naturally instead of using your furnace. Close your window coverings at night to keep in the heat.
Be aware of rooms that get hot during the day and the ones that stay cool. Experiment by keeping your blinds and drapes open in some rooms and closed in others. South-facing rooms will usually be the warmest as they get the most direct sunlight.
Sunlight not only warms your home, but it also lights your rooms so you can save on your electricity usage. As the days get longer, take advantage of the sunlight and leave the lights off in your house. When night arrives, be sure to turn off lights when you leave a room to save energy.
Reprogram Your Thermostat
As the warm spring temperatures heat your home, you can save money by giving your furnace a break and setting your thermostat to a lower setting. The less you use your furnace to heat your home, the more you’ll save on your energy bill.
The settings on a programmable thermostat can keep your home warm and comfortable during the winter, but you should change the settings to correspond with the weather. You’ll need your furnace less as spring arrives, and you may not even need to heat your home while you’re away or while you’re asleep.
Rather than simply turning off your furnace as soon as spring arrives, the U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit to keep you comfortable during the warmer weather. As in the winter, you should still lower the temperature on your thermostat while you’re away and while you’re sleeping at night to save energy.
Spring temperatures can be unpredictable, and the weather can turn cold without warning. Keep an eye on the local forecast and adjust your thermostat as necessary to keep your home comfortable.
Prepare Your Air Conditioner
Once you stop using your heating system, you’ll soon be turning to your home’s cooling system. During the winter, you probably don’t give much thought to your air conditioner, but you might need to turn on your air conditioner sooner than you think.
Before you use your air conditioner, vacuum the coils to remove any accumulated dust or debris. Clean or change the filter to allow adequate air flow, too. Now is a good time to put a reminder on your calendar to change the filter monthly.
Remove clutter from the area around your ducts and make sure that they aren’t blocked by curtains or furniture. Remove dust to avoid circulating particles through your home when you turn on your air conditioner.
By preparing your air conditioner to work efficiently and ensuring you have unrestricted airflow through your home, you can look forward to energy savings when you need to turn on your air conditioner.
Schedule Annual Maintenance on Your HVAC System
Having a professional HVAC technician complete an annual checkup on your air conditioner is important to ensure the unit works at its best. An annual maintenance inspection also gives your technician a chance to find potential problems with your air conditioner before they become emergencies. Our Griffith Energy Services 28-point maintenance inspection includes tasks such as checking the unit’s electrical system and blower apparatus, plus recommending any necessary repairs.
Make sure your air conditioner gets the attention it needs. With proper care, you can extend the life of your unit and reduce the chances of an emergency breakdown. Complete the annual maintenance on your air conditioner in the spring before the weather gets too warm.
Open Your Windows
Opening your windows in the spring can help you manage both humidity and temperature in your home. Fresh air improves your indoor air quality and keeps your home comfortable while minimizing energy use.
In the spring, your home heats during the day. Open your windows to let cool air enter and lower the temperature in your home. As long as the weather outside is comfortable, you can keep your windows open. Monitor the forecast so you know when you should keep your windows open or closed to avoid your home getting uncomfortably cold or warm. Remember to close your windows at night to keep heat inside when the temperature drops.
To protect asthma and allergy sufferers in your family from pollen or airborne particles, use a ventilator unit instead. This unit will allow fresh air to enter your home without the irritating particles attached.
Letting in fresh spring air can help you improve the humidity in your home. Dry indoor winter air can aggravate asthma, cause nosebleeds, and lead to dry, itchy skin. Managing humidity in spring will make the air in your home comfortable to breathe, improving your family’s comfort.
Do Laundry and Dishes in the Evening
In the springtime, your home can be cool at night, but you don’t necessarily need to use your furnace to keep your home comfortable. Try to do chores that increase your home’s heat gain in the evening or at night.
Using certain appliances in your home — such as the dishwasher, laundry machine, and oven — will inevitably create heat. This heat adds up, creating heat gain in your home. Using appliances that create heat can raise the temperature inside your home.
In the winter, you can add to the heat in your home by doing chores that create heat gain during the day. But in the spring, however, warmer temperatures outdoors can cause your home to heat during the day and cool at night.
You can save money by easing the use of your furnace for heating. Try doing your baking, laundry, or other chores that cause heat gain at night. Every time you increase the heat gain in your home through these necessary chores, you can save money on your heating bill.
Use Ceiling Fans Efficiently
During the spring, you can use your ceiling fans to either cool or warm your rooms. Running a ceiling fan counterclockwise creates a breeze that makes your home feel cool. When the sun heats your home, you might find that using a ceiling fan instead of air conditioning is an inexpensive way to keep your home comfortable.
The spring months can also come with cool weather, but you can still use your ceiling fan in place of your heating system. By running your fans in a clockwise, or reverse direction, the fan pushes warm air toward the ceiling and down the walls, warming the room.
Only turn on the fans you need to save on electricity, and remember to turn off your fans when you leave a room. Obviously, you get the benefits of a fan’s cooling or heating power only while you’re occupying a room.
As spring approaches, you can save money on your energy bill by taking a few simple steps to save energy. Some tasks can be completed by a homeowner, while others require an HVAC technician. After being inside all winter, take advantage of the warm weather to save money and make your home more comfortable.
At Griffith Energy Services, our professional technicians can offer a range of annual maintenance to emergency repair services to make sure your Westminster home can be heated and cooled properly. Call 888-474-3391 to speak with one of our representatives today.
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