did you know you can save energy in your mount pleasant home year round

Did You Know You Can Save Energy in Your Mount Pleasant Home Year-Round?

August 18, 2014

Taking steps to save energy at home results in a more comfortable home with lower energy bills, and may even add additional life to your appliances, helping you avoid expensive repairs or replacements.

Tend to the Water Heater

  • Next to cooling and heating your home, the water heater consumes the most energy in a typical home. Check the thermostat setting and turn it down to 120 degrees to save energy. Outside of using the dishwasher, water over 120 degrees isn’t necessary, and the heating coil inside the dishwasher uses far less energy than a water heater set to 130 or 140 degrees.
  • You can also improve the efficiency of the water heater by draining several quarts of water from it twice a year. As the water sits in the tank, the dissolved solids in the water settle at the bottom. The sediments interfere with the heating process and shorten the life of this appliance.
  • Place your hand on the outside of the water tank. If it feels warm, you can wrap it in an insulating blanket found at home improvement centers to reduce standby losses. If your heater is gas, you may want the assistance of a plumber to avoid covering any necessary venting areas.

HVAC System

  • Check the condition of the air filter for the cooling system. If it’s dirty, replace it. Running the HVAC system with a dirty filter increases energy bills and shortens the life of the system. Of all the maintenance you need to do to keep your cooling and heating systems running their best, checking and changing the air filter is the most important.
  • The outdoor condenser needs to be cleaned periodically throughout the summer to save energy at home. Remove any vegetation or debris that surrounds it and check the fins and coils. If they’re dirty, hose them off. Bent fins reduce cooling efficiency. You might be able to straighten them with a fin comb, available at hardware and home improvement stores.
  • If you haven’t had your HVAC system serviced for the cooling season, contact your HVAC contractor. Annual maintenance brings the system up to its highest potential for energy efficiency. The technician will go through the entire system, cleaning and adjusting its parts. A refrigerant check will reveal if it’s out of the range the manufacturer specifies. Levels that deviate reduce the system’s efficiency, particularly if they’re too low.
  • During the maintenance visit, ask the HVAC technician if you could benefit from a programmable thermostat to save energy at home. Families that are routinely away can save energy dollars by programming the unit to change the temperature based on occupancy patterns.

Energy Audits

Making an appointment to have an energy audit will help you save energy at home. Trained auditors use specialized equipment to evaluate the major appliances in your home and test your home for air infiltration and inadequate insulation.


The phaseout of incandescent bulbs is well underway, and 2014 is the last year that 40- and 60-watt bulbs can be manufactured. Once the supply is gone, consumers will have to choose more energy efficient bulbs. Consider replacing any of your remaining incandescent bulbs with LED or CFL bulbs. Besides consuming far less energy, these bulbs put out much less heat, keeping your home cooler.

Note the number, wattage and placements of the bulbs to replace to help you select new ones. Opt for LED bulbs for locations where you turn the lights on and off frequently. CFL bulbs tend to burn out faster by turning on and off the switch frequently.

Eliminate Vampire Power Consumption

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) estimates that Americans waste $10 billion annually in electricity by leaving products that use standby energy and vampire power plugged in. Although some standby power consumption increases convenience, like programmable coffee pots and programmed DVR players, some of this consumption is unnecessary. The chargers for portable electronics often continue to draw power even after they’re disconnected from the device.

Gather all your chargers into one place and label them for the device they charge, then dedicate a power strip for them, and either turn the power strip off or unplug the charger.

The pros at Berkeley Heating & Air Conditioning can help you save energy at home by thoroughly inspecting your HVAC equipment. We’ve provided exceptional HVAC services for homeowners in the North Charleston, Mount Pleasant and Hanahan areas since 1958.

Image Provided by Shutterstock.com

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