Take These Simple Steps to Get the Most out of Your Home’s Energy Efficiency 04/20/2017Habitually having your HVAC system cleaned and tuned up could improve its performance and help reduce your costs because an HVAC system that’s taken care of can use a great deal less energy than one that is not. But what else could you do? We’ve got more simple steps you can perform to revamp your Thousand Oaks home’s energy efficiency. Seal any leaks around your windows and doors. Put on caulk or weatherstripping at the locations you find leaks. Insulate your walls and attic. You might equate insulation with keeping your house warm during the winter, but it also helps in the summer. When it’s hot outside, heat is constantly seeking cooler places—like your home. Be sure you have sufficient insulation to keep the heat from flowing through your attic and walls and decreasing your home comfort. Have your ducts cleaned. Clean ducts make it easier for air to flow through your home, which makes your air conditioner’s job smoother. While you’re at it, ensure your ducts are properly sealed to prevent air leaks and insulate them if needed. If the ducts are leaking, you’re losing valuable heated or cooled air. Properly sealing and insulating ducts is even more necessary if they are placed in the attic, a vented crawlspace or any other unconditioned area. Set your thermostat as high as comfortably possible in the summer. To help possibly keep your cooling bill smaller, keep the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures as low as possible. According to the Department of Energy, you can save nearly 10% a year on heating and cooling by just turning your thermostat back 7° to 10°F from its normal setting for 8 hours a day. If you turn on a ceiling fan in conjunction with your air conditioner, you can raise your thermostat setting by about 4°F without negatively disturbing your comfort. Install a programmable thermostat. Sure, thermostats can be adjusted manually, but programmable thermostats make managing your home comfort and efficiency so easy. You can automatically regulate your temperature when you’re away from home or when you’re sleeping while avoiding discomfort because your home’s temperature will return to normal before you get home or wake up. If you decide not to use a programmable thermostat, avoid setting your thermostat at a colder-than-usual setting when you turn on your air conditioner. Your house won’t cool down any faster and will only cost you more money in energy. Don’t place lamps, TV sets or other heat-generating appliances near your thermostat. This practice can make your air conditioner to run longer than necessary because your thermostat senses heat from these appliances and assumes your home needs cooled. [Use|Utilize|Take advantage of]54] your windows. If it’s cooler at night, turn off your AC and open the windows. Shut the windows and your curtains or blinds in the morning to trap the cooler air and to prevent heat gain through the windows. Invest in new, energy-efficient equipment. If your HVAC equipment is more than 10 years old or not meeting with your home-comfort needs, call Air Max HVAC Inc for an evaluation. It may be time to replace it with ENERGY STAR®-qualified equipment that can cut your annual energy bill by more than $115, according to energystar.gov. If you’ve got additional questions about how to improve your home’s energy efficiency, think it could be time for more energy-efficient equipment or simply want to arrange a regular maintenance appointment, call Air Max HVAC Inc at 805-217-8662 and our experts can help. If it’s easier, schedule your appointment online using our online scheduler.