It’s up to you. In the winter, most people are comfortable with a setting of 68° to 72°. At night, or when no-one is home, you’ll save energy if you turn your thermostat down to 55° - 60°. If your home isn’t comfortable with your thermostat as high as 72°, you may benefit from an energy audit.
An energy audit will show you where you’ll get the best returns on your investment in energy efficiency. Perhaps there are drafts that can be reduced? Or areas that need more insulation? Or an old furnace that can’t keep up with our cold winters any more? Or places where moisture is getting into your home? You’ll get answers to these questions and many more with an energy audit.
Because they are electronic, programmable thermostats are more accurate and efficient than the old familiar clock thermostats. Plus, they allow you to automatically control the temperature in your home at different times of day without ever touching your thermostat. You don’t have to remember to turn the thermostat down at night or when you leave. And if your schedule changes, you can easily override the programmed settings to keep your home warm and toasty.
The Energy Co-op of Vermont recommends replacing or cleaning the air filter on your furnace once a month during the winter. This will help your heating system operate at peak levels, improve indoor air quality, ensure proper air flow and keep your home free from dust, allergens and germs.
Your air filter should be located in either the blower compartment of the furnace, in an attached filter case, or in a return air grille in a wall or ceiling of your home. If you cannot find the air filter, our service technician will be happy to show you where it is located and how to change it during your next annual tune-up.
Most hardware stores carry a large selection. They are inexpensive, so buy several at a time to make sure you always have one on hand when needed.
Only a couple of times. If this doesn’t start your furnace, call the Energy Co-op of Vermont and we’ll get a service technician out right away. If you keep hitting the re-set button over and over, your furnace may start eventually – with a loud bang from the accumulated fuel.
It’s simple really. When it’s really cold, we get lots of “no heat” calls. Many Co-op members need our services. If you have signed up for the Co-op Guardian plan, however, and you call with a “no heat” emergency, you get bumped to the front of the line for service. It’s like walking into a crowded restaurant with a filled seating area, requesting the next open table – and getting it!
We can’t give you a definite answer to this question. It’s a bit like trying to decide when to replace your car. Here are some things to consider:
- How old is your furnace or boiler? If it’s more than 15 years old, you should think about replacement because old heating equipment is much less efficient than new equipment.
- What is the history of your heating equipment? Has it needed frequent repairs? Is it noisy? Has it been well maintained or neglected over the years?
- Are there any rebates or tax credits available to help offset the cost of new equipment? Is attractive financing available? What is the payback from an investment in new high efficiency equipment?
- Does your current system provide the level of comfort that you want in your home?
- How much will repairs cost…and how many more will you need in the future? Is keeping an old system running worth the time, money and inconvenience?
Here are some general things to keep in mind:
- Choose an equipment manufacturer with a good reputation for quality and durability. Consumer Reports may be helpful.
- Choose a high efficiency system for a more comfortable home and lower heating bills.
- Make sure that your new equipment is correctly sized for your home and climate.
- Ask if your money is best spent on new heating equipment or something like adding insulation, sealing air leaks or other efficiency improvements.
- Finally, choose a reliable company for your installation. Talk to your friends and neighbors.
We can only answer this question by visiting your home, learning about your needs and completing a thorough assessment of your existing heating equipment. The good news is that there’s no charge for this service. Simply contact Wayne Thompson (860-4090, wayneREMOVETHISBEFORESENDING@ecvt.net) to schedule a site assessment
I would like to thank you for assisting me in getting a grant from the State of Vermont for a new tank, slab and roof ..... Your furnace man told me my tank would need to be replaced, and told me about this grant for low-income households ..... Your staff helped me out a lot and I would like to thank each and every one of you. This is a big expense, and with your help I was able to get it done with little cost to me. Thank you all again.
–Daria K., Milton, VT