After the craze of the holiday season fades away, Floridians experience a different kind of stress in the following months. We may experience some colder temperatures early in the new year, but it seems that Florida can’t make up its mind about weather from January to April. How are homeowners supposed to keep up with the unpredictable weather without increasing energy bills? Spoiler alert: it’s possible to have comfort and low energy bills!
Spring Means Changing Temperatures
Spring in Florida means a lot of things: trips to the beach, increased pollen count, and fluctuating temperatures every single day. When you wake up in the morning, the temperatures are freezing, but by lunch, it seems that Florida cranked up the heat. Not only does this make it difficult to dress for the day (hello layers), but it’s also taxing on your HVAC unit to manage comfort with these temperature fluctuations.
How to Manage Efficiency & Comfort
We certainly don’t want to be uncomfortable even though the temperatures are changing outside. You also don’t want to be glued to the thermostat to all day and risk driving up your energy bills. Instead, try these 6 ways to manage efficiency without sacrificing comfort.
Plan for Comfort When You Are Home
During the week, you’ll be away from your house a majority of the day due to work and your kids will be at school. This is the time where comfort isn’t as much of a priority as when you are at home. Instead of keeping the same temperature on your thermostat all day, increase or decrease your thermostat before you leave to save energy and money.
For example, you may experience colder mornings and nights, but it warms up in the afternoon. In this scenario, set the temperature at a comfortable heat setting to make sure your family is warm when you wake up and go to bed. When you leave for the day, bump the thermostat down 1-2 degrees, but leave it on heat. It may be a little hotter in your home during the day, but you’ll be away. When you arrive back at your home in the evening, it’ll be easier to heat your home for the night rather than making a huge change in your thermostat.
Make Sure Your Home is Properly Insulated
Insulation is crucial to maintaining HVAC efficiency all year long, not just in the winter. Your attic’s insulation acts as a protective shield on both sides. It keeps warm air produced by your unit within your home in the winter. In the summer, it slows down the heat exchange from the outside, making it harder for that uncomfortable Florida summer heat to make its way into your house.
If not properly insulated, you can risk overworking your unit. Your unit may be producing air or heat to make you more comfortable, but that air is either escaping through your attic or not having a fighting chance against the warm air outside. Save yourself from stress and make sure that your attic isn’t working against you and your unit.
Don’t Set Your Thermostat At Extreme Temperatures
Any time during the year, you should definitely refrain from setting your thermostat at wildly low (or high!) temperatures. Increasing the change from the current temperature to a higher or lower temperature doesn’t speed up the cooling or heating of your home. It actually just makes your unit have to kick into overdrive to combat the huge change. This leads to higher energy consumption, overworking your poor unit, and driving up your energy bills. Be patient with your unit and change the temperature gradually.
Use Fans and Natural Light to Help
Instead of constantly hovering over your thermostat to try to change the temperature, consider using fans and natural light in your home to help your unit out. If you are battling the hot afternoon heat, close your curtains in your home to block sunlight and use ceiling fans to create air movement in your home. On the other hand, if you are trying to warm up your home without cranking up the heat, open your curtains and let in natural light.
Practice Routine Maintenance
Your unit can only do so much on its own. By practicing routine maintenance on your HVAC system, you can give your unit a fighting chance every single day, despite how often the temperature may fluctuate. A properly maintained unit will run smoother and the need for repairs will greatly decrease. You should also ensure that your filter is changed out regularly so that air can easily circulate throughout your home. Another preventative measure you can take is to have your duct system professionally cleaned, which ensures there is no blockage in your ducts.
If you are looking to have your unit and system regularly maintained, but don’t want to stress over it, consider signing up for Crystal Air’s Maintenance Plan. Benefits include:
- 15% discount on repairs
- Inflation protection
- Agreement is transferable
- 24-hr emergency service
- Never an overtime charge
- We call you to schedule
Consider Switching to a Programmable Thermostat
Finally, you can prepare your home and your unit for the most unpredictable weather with a programmable thermostat. Smart thermostats are becoming increasingly popular and with good reason! There are so many benefits to upgrading a manual thermostat to a smart one. These thermostats learn your routine and adjust the temperature accordingly.
Once your thermostat learns when you are home and when you are away, it can adjust gradually to maximize comfort and ensure efficiency. These smart thermostats keep energy efficiency in mind, which will give your wallet a break in return. It’ll make it easier on you to enjoy time in your home and not spend time glaring at the thermostat!
Make Sure Your HVAC System is Prepared in All Kinds of Weather
Florida is unpredictable, especially in the spring. You can be prepared to keep you and your family comfortable, despite all these changes. By taking preventative measures to maintain comfort and efficiency, you can survive in all kinds of weather.
If you find yourself practicing these efforts but still see no payoff, you might have underlying issues with your HVAC system. Contact Crystal Air & Water today to get back to comfortable, as soon as possible. We are happy to assess your current system, make repairs, or give it a tune-up!