Your heating system works hard keeping your home comfortable all winter long, so it withstands a lot of wear and tear. One way to prolong its service life and prevent costly repairs is to lower your heating load.
Understanding “Heating Load”
In simply terms, your heating load is the amount of energy required to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. The most effective way to lower the load is to fix inefficiencies and sources of energy losses that the heating system has to compensate for by working harder and consuming more energy. As an added bonus, the steps you take to reduce the load on your furnace, heat pump or boiler can also improve your home’s efficiency year round, and trim your energy bills.
How to Reduce Your Heating Load
Here are some practical ways to lower your heating load:
- Seal air leaks. To locate all the sources of air leakage through your home’s conditioned envelope, consider having a professional energy audit performed. Through the various inspections and tests conducted during an audit, you’ll learn exactly where to use caulk, spray foam insulation, weatherstripping and door sweeps to seal those leaks.
- Add sufficient insulation. One of the most common spaces in a home that can benefit from additional insulation is the attic floor. In our climate zone, you should have R-38 to R-60 between the floor joists, but only install it after any air leaks are sealed between the attic and the living areas below.
- Assess your windows. If you have single-pane, drafty windows, they’re likely a significant cause of heat loss through the glass and gaps around the frames. If upgrading the windows isn’t in your budget, consider adding storm windows on the exterior to stop air leaks.
- Improve the ductwork. Leaky, poorly insulated ducts can rob you of 20–30 percent of your heating system’s output. To make your heating equipment’s job easier, have the ductwork sealed with mastic or metal-backed tape then properly insulated with an R-8 wrap.
For more advice on reducing the heating load in your Monmouth County home, please contact us Aggressive Mechanical Contractors.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heating loads and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 918-217-8273.
Credit/Copyright Attribution: “OpenClipart-Vectors/Pixabay”