Air Conditioning Energy Savings
TerraWise Homes Have Today’s Most Efficient HVAC Systems
TerraWise Homes utilizes the most energy efficient HVAC systems available. Three levels are offered in our new homes, any of which are BETTER than what most other builders offer as standard.
LEVEL 2 – A 17 SEER 2-Stage (upgrade above most builders).
LEVEL 3 – A Mini Split System (upgrade far better than other builders and a very good solution for smaller homes).
Every TerrraWise home includes special features that help reduce HVAC operating expenses regardless of the system selected:
-High efficiency heating & air-conditioning system
-High quality bath exhaust fans to control humidity and fresh air makeup
-Vented range hood
Heat & Cool Efficiently
TerraWise takes a systematic energy efficient design approach to every TerraWise Home constructed. This results in less air conditioning needed to keep homes cool in the summer and warm in winter. A professional mechanical & electrical engineer is used to design and develop our air conditioning systems. This results in greater efficiency and lower electric bills.
Typically, over half the energy used by a home goes to heating and cooling. Making smart decisions about a home’s HVAC system is just the start to lowering utility bills — and improving the living environment. Take these steps to increase the efficiency of home heating and cooling systems.
1. Install a programmable thermostat
A programmable thermostat is ideal for people who are away from home during set periods of time throughout the week. Through proper use, a programmable thermostat can save as much as $180 every year in energy costs. Programmable Thermostats are standard in all TerraWise Homes and for 2 Story homes there is one upstairs and downstairs.
2. Seal heating and cooling ducts
Ducts that move air to-and-from a forced air furnace, central air conditioner or heat pump are often big energy wasters. Sealing and insulating ducts can improve the efficiency of the HVAC system by as much as 20 percent or more. TerraWise Homes are constructed with properly sealed duct work. See this Duct Sealing brochure for more information.
3. Consider installing ENERGY STAR qualified heating and cooling equipment
If your HVAC equipment is more than 10 years old, or is not keeping your house comfortable, have it evaluated by a professional HVAC contractor. If it needs upgrading, consider replacing it with an ENERGY STAR system. Depending on where you live, replacing your old heating and cooling equipment with an ENERGY STAR qualified system can cut annual energy bills by more than $115.
4. Change air filters regularly
Check the A/C filter every month, especially during heavy use months (winter and summer). If the filter looks dirty after a month, change it. At a minimum, change the filter every 3 months. A dirty filter will slow down air flow and make the system work harder — wasting energy. A clean filter will also prevent dust and dirt from building up in the system — leading to expensive maintenance and/or early system failure.
5. Tune up HVAC equipment annually
Just as tuning up a car can improve gas mileage, a yearly HVAC system tune-up can improve efficiency and comfort. Learn how to maintain HVAC Equipment and find tips for selecting the right contractor.
For more information, see the Energy Star Help Document – Guide to Energy Efficient Heating & Cooling.
If you are planning on building consider a TerraWise Home – it will include the latest HVAC system available and more. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you build a highly energy-efficient Net-Zero home.