Homeowners and business owners alike are always searching for the best ways to cut down on utility bills. Unfortunately, there are plenty of HVAC home energy myths circulating in the marketplace. In reality, some of these popular ideas cost you more energy and money.
Let’s look at 8 common HVAC home energy myths and set the record straight, once and for all.
Common HVAC Home Energy Myths
1. It’s easy to tell where a home is losing energy.
The Truth: With today’s technology, it’s easier to pinpoint where you’re losing heat in the winter and cool air in the summer. Hidden air leaks can cause you to lose energy through floors, ceilings, chimneys, pipes, ductwork, and of course, windows and doors.
2. Making a house too airtight is dangerous. Houses need to breathe.
The Truth: While houses do need fresh air, most have more leaks than necessary. Incoming air typically enters through basements, garages, and crawl spaces. These leaks can compromise air quality.
3. Filters don’t really need to be changed regularly.
The Truth: They do need regular attention. The dirtier they get, the less efficiently your central HVAC will run. Change your filter once per month to keep your heating and cooling system running well.
4. Closing vents in rooms can save you money.
The Truth: Closing vents is not a good idea. The truth is it can cost you more in repairs down the road. We recently wrote an article about this very topic. Check it out here.
5. Moving the thermostat as high or as low as it will go will cool or heat your home faster.
The Truth: Your thermostat is nothing more than a regulator. It instructs your system when to cut on and off based on the temperature you want the house to be. It doesn’t work harder or faster if you raise or lower it.
6. Bigger is better.
The Truth: It would seem this one makes sense. I know you’re thinking, “if I have a bigger unit, it will work harder. But, working harder isn’t always smarter. A larger A/C system tends to cycle on and off “more often, which costs more. It can also shorten the lifespan of your heat and air unit.
7. Thermostat location doesn’t matter.
The Truth: Location does matter. Place your thermostat in an area that’s easy to access. However, make sure it’s not near a vent or window to get direct sunlight. Here are some more thermostat placement tips.
8. Buying an energy efficient furnace or air conditioner will automatically reduce my bills.
Not necessarily. This myth is only half right. An energy efficient system could lower your energy usage. However, there’s more to it than that. Even the most efficient model won’t help if you have a drafty house or if you don’t maintain it properly. It’s really a group effort between you and your air conditioning unit.
Proper installation is also an important factor. Studies have shown that an improperly installed air conditioner or duct system wastes approximately 1/3 or more energy.
Your air conditioning and furnace’s purpose is to provide comfort and quality, breathable air. Get the best out, have fewer breakdowns, and extend the life of your HVAC unit with care. Regular check-ups and maintenance will ensure your family or business is comfortable all year.