As Canadians, we know that winter weather can arrive overnight with the promise of higher energy usage and more expensive bills. But it doesn’t have to be such a hit to your monthly expenses. There are several different things you can do around your home to ensure your home remains warm throughout the winter. Oftentimes, the reason for costly winter heating bills is due to air loss, either warm air seeping out of the home or cold air coming into the home. Now is the perfect time to evaluate your home’s energy efficiency, along with the overall weather resiliency throughout your home to make it cozy, without the dreaded costs. This season, use these winter comfort control tips to keep your home comfortable and energy efficient.
If you can see sunlight around doors and windows, it means there are gaps where air can enter or leave the home. One easy fix is to replace worn-out weather-stripping with new weather-stripping. For bigger gaps around windows, you may need to reseal them using spray foam insulation and caulk.
Even if you already have both applied from the previous year, it’s always a good idea to check to make sure that they aren’t peeling away. If you notice any signs of wear and tear, it’s always worth the time to replace them and add new caulking or weather-stripping to prevent drafts from entering.
Depending on the age of your home, electrical outlets and light switches may not have sufficient insulation around them. When there is no insulation, cold air can get into the home. You can easily fix this problem by removing the cover plates and placing foam gaskets around the outlet or switch, and then put the cover plate back over the outlet or switch.
The attic is where a lot of heat and energy gets lost, even though it’s often forgotten about. So if your attic isn’t insulted, it’s well worth considering. It can add a necessary buffer, which will allow your internal temperature to regulate and maintain a comfortable level more easily.
Quite frequently, the caulk placed around these inbound connections wears out and cracks, creating air leaks. Remember to pull up the decorative rings on water pipes you might have under the sink or under the toilet, too. The best way to fix gaps around these items is to use spray foam insulation to seal up any gaps.
You would be surprised how cold air can get into the home from windows that are not shut correctly or tightly. Keep in mind the weather-stripping could also need replaced on older windows.
Today’s digital thermostats and humidistats are much more precise and allow you to program your furnace and humidifier to maintain different comfort levels within the home at different times of the day and night. Utilizing these features helps improve the efficiency of your furnace and humidifier and can even reduce your energy bills.
If you don’t already have one, a programmable thermostat can be a huge help and cost saver during the winter. These thermostats use smart, innovative technology that can learn your temperature preferences and adjust the internal temperature throughout your home accordingly. It also can also take into account when the house is empty, thus lowering the temperature enough, and raising it back up before you head home. These devices are extremely helpful at controlling the temperature throughout your home so you can take advantage of maximum energy efficiency.
First, have a look at the outside of your furnace. You shouldn’t see combustion residue or any black soot in the vicinity – if you do, make sure to give us a call. Next, turn up your thermostat so you can inspect the actual flames inside the burner itself. Are they blue and flowing steadily? They should be. If the flames appear a yellow or orange tint, or are flickering, you likely have an issue with poor combustion. In this instance, make sure to give us a call right away so we can take a look.
Our experienced technicians perform a detailed inspection of your heating system to ensure it is operating correctly to provide optimal comfort throughout the winter and helps avoid unexpected breakdowns.
If your current HVAC system is old and reaching the end of its lifespan, consider upgrading to a high-efficiency, variable-speed heating and cooling system. Look for a high AFUE or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficient rating, which represents the efficiency of a gas furnace. The better the energy-efficiency rating, the better your monthly expenses and comfort will be.
By taking the time to do a walkthrough of your home after reviewing the following tips, you might just discover one or more areas that need your attention. Do not hesitate to contact us, here at Distinct Heating & Cooling, with any questions or concerns about your furnace and heating system or to schedule your annual furnace tune-up by calling (403) 477-3810 today!
In addition to these winter comfort control tips, always remember to have your HVAC system serviced regularly to keep it running smoothly and efficiently in your home. For all of your HVAC needs, Distinct Heating and Cooling is here to help! Whether it’s a repair, replacement, maintenance or installation, we can take care of it for you.