Ways to Reduce the Load on Your Furnace
The Delaware and Pennsylvania area’s cold winters place a heavy load on your furnace, but there are a few simple steps that can lighten your furnace load. These steps will help you save money, extend your furnace’s lifespan, and stay more comfortable.
Reducing the load on your furnace means lowering your home’s heating demand by making your home more energy efficient so that it stays warmer for longer. There are several ways to do this.
Stop Your Air Leaks
Tiny cracks around your house let your warm air escape outdoors, increasing your furnace load. These leaks form around doors, windows, penetrations for wiring and pipes, baseboards, and outlets. Apply caulk to seal leaks around non-moving surfaces such as window frames. To block leaks around moving surfaces such as sliding window tracks, install weather stripping.
Boost Your Insulation
Your attic should have an R-38 layer (around 12 inches) of insulation at minimum. If you already have 3 or 4 inches of attic insulation, add another R-38 layer to optimize your home’s energy efficiency. Sealing and insulating your air ducts also does a lot to reduce your furnace load.
If your walls or floors are chilly in winter, they probably need more insulation. By performing a home energy evaluation, a heating and cooling technician can advise you on how much insulation to add where.
Warm up Your Windows
Hang heavy drapes and close them after dark. Drapes with edges that can be fastened to the wall keep out cold even more effectively. Leave the drapes open on warm days to allow the sun to heat your home.
If you have old, single-pane windows, consider upgrading to Energy Star-qualified double-pane windows. Adding storm panels or simply covering the interior side of your windows with heavy plastic sheeting taped down around the edges also helps reduce your home’s heating load.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues — especially HVAC and plumbing issues — so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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