Is Your Heating System Burning Money?
The simplest way to maintain your heating system’s efficiency is to get your heating system cleaned every year. When a certified heating technician comes to clean your system, he or she will check your system’s efficiency. Newer heating oil systems use about 85% of the oil supplied to heat your home. The remaining 15% is what is called “lost energy”. Propane heating systems use about 94% of the propane supplied to heat your home and the remaining 6% is “lost energy” or potential heat that is “thrown away”.
A dirty furnace will increase the heat you lose – lowering your efficiency. This means you’ll need to buy more heating oil or propane gallons to make up for what it loses.
Be sure to schedule a cleaning with your heating provider. Pick a date on the calendar each year to remind yourself. And, while you’re doing so, ask a certified heating technician about some other efficiency-boosting opportunities:
- Install a vent damper – A vent damper improves efficiency by preventing heat from escaping through the chimney by closing off your boiler’s vent when it isn’t firing. Not all boilers require a vent damper, so be sure to ask a certified heating technician what’s right for you.
- Replace your heating system – Cleaning your heating system or installing a vent damper might not work if your furnace or boiler is simply too old and inefficient. In this case, you’ll have to seriously consider investing in a new heating system. A new high-efficiency furnace can save you hundreds of dollars on your heating bills over your old furnace. And, a new “low mass” boiler can save 30-40% of the gallons used by an old boiler with a 30 gallon water jacket.
- Other considerations – although your heating system is a big factor in your heating costs, you should look into other energy saving ideas for your home.
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Posted on January 11, 2012