When springtime arrives in Layton, UT, it’s common for temperatures to spike and drop without much warning. Around this time, we also begin hearing from our clients that their energy bills are steadily rising. If you are one of the many local residents who dreads opening their monthly utility bill, then we have some insights and tips we’d like to share with you. Here are some of the most common causes of high energy bills in spring.
Overdue on HVAC Maintenance
Your heating and cooling system needs an annual tune-up to stay at peak efficiency. Each year your system goes without maintenance, its overall energy efficiency and performance decrease. If you have noticed a steady increase in energy costs from year to year, an irregularly maintained HVAC can be the culprit. During an HVAC tune-up, our technicians will clean the unit, lubricate moving parts, and make any necessary adjustments to improve its efficiency. They’ll also keep an eye out for potential problems so you can have them repaired before they drastically impact the system. We recommend having your furnace and air conditioner maintained at least once a year, ideally in the springtime.
Outdated HVAC System
As your heating and cooling system ages, it will naturally become less energy efficient over time. Regular use over the years will take its toll on the system’s components and reduce its overall efficiency. This can be exacerbated by mechanical issues the system has experienced over the years, especially if repairs weren’t done correctly. In addition, older HVAC models don’t have the same technology as newer models. New furnaces and air conditioners benefit from state-of-the-art technology and features that allow them to achieve the same results while using less energy.
Damaged Furnace or Air Conditioner
An unusually high energy bill is often a sign that your heating and cooling system needs repair work. Damaged components and loose connections can put a strain on the system and cause it to work harder than usual. One of the most common symptoms of a faulty furnace or air conditioner is called short cycling, which is when the system runs for a minute or two before turning off and starting up again. All the starting and stopping consumes a huge amount of energy and can contribute to an unusually high utility bill.
Damaged or Dirty Airducts
Your HVAC system relies on a series of air ducts to move treated air throughout your home. If the ducts aren’t in good shape, they can cut into your home’s energy efficiency. Ducts that are damaged, loose, or incorrectly installed can form air leaks and become a major source of energy loss. Dirty air ducts clogged with dust, debris or pet hair also contribute to airflow issues. In both of these cases, your system will have to work much harder than normal. All of this extra work will contribute to a higher-than-normal utility bill.
Dirty Air Filter
The air filter is a small but critical piece of your home’s heating and cooling system. This disposable mesh screen prevents debris, like dust and pet hair, from entering the system and clogging up its delicate components. However, these filters don’t last forever and will become jammed after just a couple of months of use. Your HVAC has to work much harder to push and pull air through a clogged filter, causing your energy bill to creep up. We recommend changing the air filter every three months. If you have a large household or pets, we recommend changing your filter more often.
Non-Optimal Thermostat Schedule
Taking advantage of your thermostat’s programmable settings can greatly reduce how much energy your HVAC consumes. By scheduling the system to be most active when you’re at home and relatively dormant while you’re away, you can limit how hard it works during the day. After all, there’s no point in running your AC or furnace if you’re not at home to enjoy the comfort! Instead, you can opt to run the system from evening until morning and set it to a baseline temperature for the hours you’re away. Even this simple step will take a huge bite out of your energy bill. Keep in mind that as the seasons change, it’s important to update your thermostat’s programming to match the weather.
Your Heating and Cooling Experts in Layton
Is your HVAC system contributing to unusually high energy bills? The team at Smedley Service can help. Since 1947, we’ve worked with homeowners throughout Layton to find high-quality solutions for their home comfort needs. From same-day installations to emergency repairs and comprehensive maintenance plans, we’ll have your HVAC system in peak condition all year long. If your furnace or air conditioner can be more energy efficient, contact the team at Smedley Service – we will be happy to take a look at the system and provide you with our professional insights and recommendations. We provide heating, cooling, and plumbing services.