Advice for Reducing the Load on Your Furnace

If you’re not careful with how you use your furnace, the wintertime cold fronts that pass through San Antonio can run up your heating bill fast. Taking steps to reduce your home heating load will keep your bills down, prolong your furnace’s lifespan, and save you money when it’s time to replace your heating equipment.

Stop Those Drafts

Chilly drafts mean cold air is blowing in from outdoors and your warm air is also escaping. Stop this leakages and your furnace won’t have to work so hard to compensate for the loss. To block leaks around windows and doors, apply weatherstripping to the movable surfaces, such as the window tracks, and caulk the non-movable surfaces, such as the frames. If your windows are warped, sagging or otherwise damaged, consider replacing them with Energy Star-qualified windows.

Also check for and seal air leaks around points where wires and pipes enter from outdoors, ventilation fans, baseboards, and electrical outlets.

Boost Your Insulation

The attic is a major source of heat loss and gain. An attic in the San Antonio area should have at least an R-30 layer of insulation. If your attic already has 3 or 4 inches, add another R-25 layer. In the basement, insulate your rim joints with rigid foam boards and apply caulk around the edges to air seal the insulation.

If your walls or floors are chilly in winter, consult with a heating and cooling technician about adding loose-fill insulation there.

Invest in Duct Maintenance

Poorly maintained air ducts can develop leaks that cause them to waste up to 30 percent of the warm air the furnace produces. Lack of insulation also leads to wasted warmth. Keeping your ducts in shape allows more warmth to reach your rooms, which reduces the energy demand and strain on your heating equipment.

Make sure the duct joints are fit tightly and sealed with mastic or metal-backed tape. Insulate ducts in unheated spaces with duct wrap or fiberglass batts.

Need a little help boosting your home’s energy efficiency and maintaining your furnace? Then contact us at Beyer Boys in the San Antonio area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Antonio, Texas area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “ross-edward cairney/Shutterstock”

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