If you’re looking at energy-saving investments to make in your South Florida home, take a step beyond just installing a high-efficiency HVAC system and schedule an energy evaluation. When you have a professional HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) technician perform an energy evaluation, he or she can help you locate areas where your home is not energy efficient so that you can take steps to solve the problem.
An energy evaluation, also referred to as an energy audit, looks for areas where your home is leaking air. When conditioned air escapes from your house, or unconditioned outside air gets in, you lose money. You either have to expend energy to replace the lost conditioned air or expend energy to condition the outside air. Either way, your utility bill goes up.
Before your energy evaluation, collect your utility bills for the last year, and make a list of areas where you suspect your home is losing air. Your energy auditor will talk to you about your energy usage, examine your bills, and do an inspection of your house. During the inspection, the auditor will look for cracks, holes or other signs that you have leaks. He or she will check your insulation to make sure it is properly installed and not dirty, which can be a sign of air leaks.
Your auditor also may conduct a blower door test and a thermographic scan. A blower door test uses a strong fan to suck the air out of your home, creating a suction that pulls in outside air through cracks or holes. A thermographic scan registers changes in temperature both from air leaks and from areas that have inadequate insulation.
With the information from your energy audit in hand, you can seal leaks and add insulation. Your auditor also may suggest changes to the way in which you use energy, such as installing a programmable thermostat and turning up the temperature (in the summer) or turning it down (in the winter), when you’ll be away from home for a stretch of several hours and when you’re asleep. Changes in the way in which you use energy can lower your energy bills significantly.
For more information about scheduling an energy evaluation or other HVAC questions, contact Robert R. McGill Air Conditioning Co. We’ve proudly served the eastern Palm Beach, northern Broward and southern Martin counties since 1979.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Palm Beach County, Florida about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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Filed under: Energy Evaluations
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