How to Save Energy This Winter

How to Save Energy This Winter - Twin Cities MN

How to Save Energy This Winter 

If you’ve heard of the term “heat or eat,” you may also know that many people have a very real problem when temperatures are falling at this time of year. Energy bills are known to rise this time of year, which can be a financial burden for some. The good news is that there are ways to keep your energy levels low. In the article, our HVAC company in Minneapolis, MN, shares how to save energy this winter.

Deal with Draughts 

Gaps in your doors, windows, and floors will let cool air in and warm air out. So consider mounting the drag excluders on your doors and windows. You may use an appropriate sealant, insulating strips, wooden beads, or even paper pieces. Rolled-up blankets make excellent draught excluders under your doors, too.  Floors with holes and cracks are also responsible for heat loss, so check your floors carefully and consider getting any gaps sealed with a silicone-based sealant. Look out for other areas that can also be left in cold air. But never cover air vents, as the air vent may increase the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. In the meantime, if your windows are not double-glazed, it’s a good idea to close your curtains, blinds, or shutters when the sun sets-but leave them open throughout the day as the sun shines through your windows will help your room stay warm. How to Save Energy This Winter - Twin Cities MN

Avoid Leaving Devices On

Try not to leave electrical equipment such as TVs, DVD players, laptop boxes, cell phone chargers, and other standby appliances. If they’re on standby, they’re still turned on, which means they’re wasting their resources instead of leaving them on standby, switching them off completely. Our friends at Specialized AV, a Norcal audio and video company, adds that there are plenty of smart home automation systems that will help you save time and money.

Insulate Your Home

There are substantial energy savings to be made if your home is well-insulated. For example, experts say that about a quarter of the heat from homes goes straight out of a roof with no proper insulation. You can insulate your roof, cavity walls, and even solid walls, and even place insulation under your floorboards, all of which can contribute to lower energy bills as well as a warmer home climate. Depending on the type of water heater you have, you might also want to insulate your hot water tank and pipes, which will help keep your water cooler for a longer period of time. You can get relatively inexpensive foam tubes to cover the pipes between your hot water tank and the boiler.

Keep Heating Under Control

Installing a thermostat, timer, and thermostatic radiator valve can help you save also. This ensures that you can configure the timer to switch your heating on before you get up or before you get home, which saves more energy compared to turning your thermostat up to warm up your home instantly. Individual thermostat valves on your radiators will also give you control over which rooms you want to heat and which temperature you want to heat. Bleeding your radiator might be helpful as well since trapped air in the radiators will make them hotter and less effective. Plus, try not to position the furniture directly in front of the radiators, as it might mean that the heat will be absorbed into the furniture rather than heat the air. Our Minneapolis HVAC techs highly recommend smart heating controls. These are the latest technologies that help you monitor your heating remotely through your smart device. Heat Check Twin Cities MN

Turn Your Thermostat Down

Reducing your room temperature by just 1° could reduce your heating bills by up to 10%. If you’re healthy and under 65, you can comfortably get your home cooler than 65°F if you’re relaxed. Otherwise, heat your home to at least 65°F. You will also want to turn the thermostat down on your water heater tank, as it saves both water and power, so you don’t need too much cold water to keep the temperature of your bath or shower warm.

Switch to LED Bulbs

Replacing all of your light bulbs with energy-saving LED bulbs might be an expense, but it’s worth it. Many LED light-bulbs are rated life of up to 50,000 hours, which means that if you use them 12 hours a day, they will last more than 11 years. LED bulbs often use less energy than other bulbs. An average household will spend $134, replacing all its LED bulbs. But that will save about $47 a year on expenses. So if you’re not replacing them for 11 years, you’re going to save a huge amount. Although LED is still a relatively new lighting technology, the prices have fallen. Find them in your nearest supermarket or DIY shop. Often strive to get into the habit of turning off the lights when you don’t need them. Switching off the light for just a few seconds saves more energy than it takes for the light to start up again, no matter what sort of bulb you use. This will save you about $19 on your annual energy bill.

Service Your Home’s Boiler

If your Minneapolis home has gas or oil central heating, try to ensure that your boiler is serviced every year by a professional heating company in Minneapolis, MN. If, on the other hand, your boiler is getting old, it could be worth replacing it with a more powerful one that could save you money in the long run and keep your home warm. New boilers are expensive-usually around $3,000.  If you’re concerned about how to save energy this winter, contact McQuillan Bros. One of our HVAC techs will examine your heating and cooling systems and plumbing to see if there are ways to improve. If you’re looking to save on HVAC repairs or plumbing repairs, check out our coupons and special offers

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Have You Scheduled Your Seasonal HVAC Maintenance?

Have You Scheduled Your Seasonal HVAC Maintenance? - McQuillan Bros

Scheduled Your Seasonal HVAC Maintenance with McQuillan Bros

Seasonal HVAC maintenance is vital to ensuring that the system works efficiently and reliably while keeping energy costs minimal. However, some homeowners don’t know where to start in terms of seasonal HVAC maintenance, and the discussion below is aimed at helping you to know what needs to be done, when and by whom.

HVAC Maintenance and Safety Concerns

At McQuillan Bros, we are particularly concerned about two safety issues with regard to seasonal HVAC maintenance.

The first has to do with the problems which can result once your heating and cooling system isn’t properly maintained. For example, Blaine HVAC experts say it is easy for a crack to form on a furnace and remain undetected if annual maintenance isn’t performed on the heating system. Such a crack can leak carbon monoxide into your home, and your household may be in grave danger due to this toxic gas that is odorless. Furthermore, electric systems can short-circuit, and this can pose electrical fire risks to your home and family. Furnace installation MN technicians have seen many tragedies arising out of such electrical defects, so don’t let your home add to the statistics.

The second safety concern has to do with DIY attempts to maintain the HVAC system. Many homeowners don’t know where to draw the line between what they can do and what should strictly be left to a Blaine HVAC contractor. Some maintenance tasks, such as replacing air filters, are basic, and they can be performed by anyone, while other maintenance tasks, such as testing the controls of the HVAC system, are technical and can only be done safely by a professional. 

With McQuillan Bros as your HVAC service partner, you will know what you can or cannot do while keeping your heating and cooling system working at its best.

Have You Scheduled Your Seasonal HVAC Maintenance? - McQuillan Bros

Seasonal HVAC Maintenance Tasks for Professionals

A Blaine heating and cooling professional will perform the following seasonal HVAC maintenance tasks to prepare the system for either the heating or cooling season ahead:

  • Inspecting all electrical terminals, wires, and connections to ensure none are loose or corroded.
  • Lubricating the moving parts so that they can move effortlessly and without using a lot of energy.
  • Checking the refrigerant level to ensure it is optimal
  • Inspecting and cleaning all the major components in addition to ensuring they are damage-free
  • Ensuring that the airflow within the components meets manufacturer specifications for efficiency
  • Testing the controls to ensure they are working as they should
  • Checking the thermostat for accuracy
  • Checking the coils to ensure grime accumulation doesn’t impede heat transfer
  • Clearing the condensate drain to avoid water damage or system shutdown once water stagnates in the line.

Our McQuillan Bros team visits Minneapolis homes armed with an extensive maintenance checklist. We also inform our clients about the tasks they can attend to in-between our visits.

Homeowner Seasonal HVAC Maintenance Tasks

Here are some maintenance tasks that you can perform to ensure that your HVAC system works properly all-year-round.

  • Checking and replacing the air filter. The energy consumption of your unit can increase by up to 60% with a dirty filter. The filter plays a big role in maintaining the indoor air quality and the efficiency of the HVAC system. We recommend checking your air filter monthly.
  • Sealing air leaks. Any leak in your home allows the conditioned air to escape to the outside. That means that your HVAC system will work a lot harder than it should to maintain ideal conditions inside your home. Placerville plumbing and heating professionals, therefore, recommend that you periodically check the house envelop for leaks and seal those leaks in order to get the best from your HVAC system.
  • Keep the unit clean. It is also a good idea to wipe down your HVAC system periodically. This will ensure that any accumulation of dust and grime can be removed in a timely manner. Otherwise, heat exchange may be tampered with, and the efficiency of your unit will be compromised. Not to mention its durability (as it will suffer premature wear and tear).

If you haven’t scheduled your seasonal HVAC maintenance, now is the time to do so. Contact McQuillan Bros today for a boiler tune-up, furnace tune-up. One of our experienced HVAC technicians will make sure your HVAC system is ready for the new season.

Contact an expert

We Can't Wait To Serve You!

Complete the form below and one of our team members will give you a call to help get you scheduled. If you have an urgent need please call us at
(651) 292-0124