STATEPOINT -- Temperatures are on the rise, but that doesn’t mean your energy bill needs to increase too. There are a number of ways you can keep your home cool and your energy bills in check this season.
Is your air conditioner operating optimally? If you have a central air conditioning system, it’s important to get it checked by an HVAC/R professional. Do some comparison shopping -- special deals are easy to come by on seasonal preventative maintenance. Be advised, however, that the expertise of HVAC/R technicians can vary widely.
Though the HVAC/R industry does not require technicians to take mandatory competency tests, you can help ensure a job well done by opting for a technician certified by North American Technician Excellence (NATE), the nation’s largest independent, non-profit certification body for HVAC/R technicians. NATE-certified technicians are qualified to properly install and service equipment, which translates to maximum home comfort and energy savings.
Once you know your air conditioning system is running efficiently, there are several things you can do to keep energy bills to a minimum:
• Keep air conditioner units clear of plants and debris. Obstructing airflow will reduce the unit’s efficiency.
• Raise the thermostat. Each degree saves a percentage off your cooling energy bill.
• Check air filters every couple of weeks and change them at least twice during the season, or as directed by the manufacturer.
• Review last year’s energy bills. If your cooling costs are drastically higher this year, a qualified HVAC/R technician can help diagnose any problems.
Don’t forget, even the most eco-friendly, high-efficiency products and appliances can waste money and energy if they’re not installed, serviced and maintained properly. By working with certified technicians, homeowners can have confidence that their HVAC/R equipment is delivering on the energy efficiency promised.
When scheduling an air conditioning check-up, be sure to request a NATE-certified technician. To find a qualified local contractor who employs certified technicians, look for the NATE logo or go to HVACRAdvice.com .
By making sure your air conditioning system is operating efficiently and by adopting a few energy-friendly habits, you can maintain a cool home while keeping energy costs down.