Preparing Your Home for Vacation
With the 2018 summer vacation season officially upon us, a projected 35 percent of Americans are planning a vacation this year. And, with the average vacation goer dropping more than $5,000 on a single getaway, controlling unforeseen costs while you’re away is one way to ensure your vacation dollars aren’t swindled.
The Energy Drain in your Home
You might think that computers and smartphones, with their daily charging and recharging regimens, might add strain to your electric bill. But, with an annual energy cost of just 12 cents for smartphones and a mere $8 for laptop computers, homeowners should be looking for bigger energy drains while they’re away. According to Michael Bluejay, aka Mr. Electricity, it’s the big things that count. At the top of his list of energy suckers: your home’s heating and air conditioning systems. About 48 percent of all energy used in the home goes to heating and cooling, so imagine the savings if you can lessen that energy load while you’re away.
What can homeowners do to control the energy use of such big systems while they’re away? Start with turning off or turning down your heating and air conditioning settings, making the system work less or even go idle, while you’re away. Maintain a temperature in the home that prevents things like humidity from getting too high and creating a potential problem.
Also important is making sure your system is well-maintained, as a dirty heating and air conditioning system can impact its ability to run efficiently. When the system doesn’t run efficiently and is bogged down with dust, dirt and other items, it requires more energy to move air through the home.
Maintain your system with regular maintenance and air duct cleaning to address any built-up dirt and dust. While air duct cleaning isn’t necessary for vacation preparation, ensuring your home’s heating and air conditioning systems are in order will ensure that the steps you take to minimize energy waste while you’re gone yield savings on your energy bill.