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Maintain Your Furnace and Hot Water Heater

You can save energy and money by regularly performing maintenance on your furnace and hot water heater.

The energy efficiency of your hot water heater and the heating and cooling systems in your home are very important. How you keep them maintained dictates how well they perform and how much money you spend, or save, in the long run.

As you probably already know, these two units take up a very large percentage of what you pay in monthly energy costs. Keeping them running in good condition is good for your peace of mind and well being and your pocketbook.

Regular maintenance of your furnace and hot water heater can keep your energy costs down, while increasing the longevity of these units. Regular maintenance is also essential for continued safe and efficient operation of both your furnace and water heater.

There are several important, but inexpensive, things you can do to make your furnace and hot water heater run more efficient.

  • Turn down the thermostats on both your furnace and hot water heater. This will provide and immediate savings on energy usage. You should turn down your heater, or turn it off, when you go to work, especially if no one is home during those hours. You can also turn it off when you go to bed.
  • Install automatic timers that turn on your heater at predetermined times such as just before you get home from work or in the morning before getting out of bed.
  • Keep vents clean and replace filters as suggested by the manufacturer. Dirty filters and blocked vents keep heat and air from circulating freely.
  • Monitor the use of bathroom and kitchen fans and use them only as necessary. They can suck the heat out of a house very quickly, especially during cold nights and days.
  • If you have a fireplace, keep the damper closed when not in use because heat escapes through the hole and it also allows cold air to enter the room.
  • If you are not using a room, close it off. Heating or cooling unused rooms is a waste of energy.
  • You should insulate your hot water heater by installing an insulation jacket. Hot water heater jackets are relatively inexpensive and can be purchased at most hardware stores.
  • Water pipes should also be wrapped and insulated, especially if they run through cold, uninsulated areas of your home.

In some instances, you will have to spend money to save money on energy costs. If your furnace, or hot water heater, is old, it may be prudent to replace it. Most newer model furnaces and hot water heaters, especially those that are Energy Star approved, can save up to 15% in energy usage. Over time, they pay for themselves in savings on your monthly energy bills.You may also get tax credits and rebates for installing energy saving appliances and equipment in your home.


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