The Internet is full of helpful tips that claim to save you energy. Some are useful, and can cut your energy bill significantly. But some widely circulated tips, particularly about HVAC performance, are untrue, and can actually end up making you use more energy. Here are four common HVAC energy-savings myths, debunked:
- A high-efficiency HVAC system automatically means reduced energy bills. Buying an Energy Star-certified A/C, heat pump or furnace goes a long way towards saving energy, but there are other considerations. First, you need to get the proper size system for your home. An A/C that’s too small, for example, will work harder than necessary, wasting energy without cooling your home properly. Over time, the extra stress on the equipment can even shorten its lifespan. A system that’s too large brings along its own set of problems. Second, you need to make sure the appliance is correctly installed, or it won’t work properly. Finally, perform regular maintenance to make sure it continues operating at peak efficiency for years to come.
- Setting your thermostat way high or way low will heat or cool your home more quickly. Most cooling and heating equipment will work the same way to cool or heat your home whether you set it three degrees below (or above) the temperature in the house, or 13 degrees. So you’re not going to reach your desired temperature any quicker by cranking up the dial more than necessary..
- Ducts should be sealed with duct tape. A major source of energy loss is leaking ducts. Repairing leaks can help your unit run more efficiently. But despite its name, duct tape isn’t a good choice for sealing ducts. It can lose its adhesive properties after a few years and fall off, particularly on a dusty surface (which ducts generally are). Instead, seal your ducts with mastic sealant or metal tape.
- Closing some air vents saves energy. Your A/C runs at the same energy level regardless of the airflow to your home, so closing off vents in rooms you’re not using doesn’t save energy. In fact, it can put extra pressure on the fan, leading to more energy use.
For A/C tips that definitely aren’t energy-savings myths, contact our experts at Overland Park Heating & Cooling. We’ve served the greater Kansas City area’s HVAC needs since 1983.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Overland Park, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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