The 7 Deadly Sins of Heating Your Home
On September, 17, 2016
Like a student who doesn’t study for a test and expects to make an A, many a St. Louis homeowner will subject their furnace to the poorest conditions, and yet expect to live in a heated paradise. When we fail to provide a proper environment for our heating and air unit to function, then we waste energy and cause it to work harder than is necessary. The crew at Rivers Plumbing, Heating & Cooling is here to help homeowners by providing practical information that will help them maximize the use of their Heating & Air Conditioning units. So here they are. These are the 7 deadly sins of heating your home.
- Neglect. Furnaces, like all other machines, need maintenance and upkeep. An annual or biannual routine checkup to make sure your unit has sufficient Freon, clear hoses, free of leaks and that it is tightly mounted and all parts are working.
- Windows & Doors Left Open. Mama told us over and over again, “Shut the Door!” or “Would you please close the windows!?!” Open doors and windows either suck the air out of your house or blow air back in disrupting the constant flow of internal air created by your unit.
- Poor Insulation. Honey, it’s cold inside! Improper insulation causes your utility bill to skyrocket. It causes your A/C unit to run longer than necessary. It also never fully heats or cools your home. Signs of poor home insulations may include ice dams or icicles present at the overhang, rapid temperature changes inside the home, or the A/C never turning off.
- Excessive Thermostat Adjustment. In the battle for temperature control there are no survivors. Somewhere between your freezing body of ice and someone else’s sweatshop soaked clothes there is a middle ground. Rather than wreaking havoc with the thermostat, try agreeing on a set temperature and adjusting your layers of clothing instead.
- Poorly Sealed Windows. Air is like water. It seeps through the tightest places that you wouldn’t expect. Routine maintenance on your window sealer should be performed almost seasonally, if not bi-annually. Make sure you windows are working well, the locks are tight, they are tight up against the frames, and beware of a house frame adjusting due to foundation settlement.
- Poor Ventilation. Do a quick run through of your ventilation system typically located in the attic. Make sure there are no boxes, boards or anything other debris crushing the vent passageways. Sometimes the passageways are lying on top of each other due to poor placement. The passageways need to be wide open with a clean flow of air. Also make sure all the passageway connections are completely fastened with no leaks.
- Dirty Filters. We saved the best for last. Bad filters hinder furnaces from operating efficiently. If there is no clear passage, then a furnace has to work twice as hard. Dirty filters also cause air contamination inside the home and make it unhealthy to breathe. It is suggested that you change your filter once a month.