One of the most effective ways to control your home heating and cooling costs is to use a programmable thermostat to monitor your HVAC system and maintain a comfortable temperature in your rooms. According to Consumer Reports’ Top Thermostat Reviews:
Programmable thermostats can trim about $180 a year from your energy bill by automatically reducing your heating or cooling when you need it least. Some thermostats tested by Consumer Reports were easy to set and use but others were so complicated that you might end up spending more on energy, not less.
Every family lives differently in their homes, so the programmable thermostat your neighbor just installed may not be the best choice for you. Finding the correct equipment for your home and family is part of what’s called “right sizing” an HVAC system. This means just what it sounds like: designing, installing, testing, and maintaining the appropriate equipment to maximize your family’s comfort and health, and minimize your home heating and cooling energy bills.
What is a programmable thermostat?
A programmable thermostat is a sensor connected to your HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning) system. It can turn your HVAC system on and off, in order to maintain a comfortable temperature. There are many different types of programmable thermostats, but they all work according to the same principles.
What are the benefits of a programmable thermostat?
Set it and forget it! If you have a regular thermostat in your home you might find yourself adjusting it several times a day, as you leave for work and come home, or when you go to sleep and wake up. The most basic programmable thermostats will do this for you. All you have to do is input a time of day and temperature. Your new thermostat will take care of the work.
More advanced programmable thermostats are sometimes called “learning thermostats”. Learning thermostats are basic programmable thermostats with additional sensors and software. The sensors are activated when you or your family move in and out of rooms. Software connected to the sensors then activates your HVAC system to raise or lower the room temperature to the comfortable level you programmed into the thermostat. Over time, these thermostats learn when you are home and when you are away, and program themselves to manage your HVAC system for you. Some of them are even connected to the Internet, so you can use your laptop or phone to control your home’s temperature while you’re away.
Is a programmable or learning thermostat the right choice for you?
Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems are one of the best places to look for savings in your home. If your heater or air conditioner are more than 10 years old, if you think they’re running a lot, or if you can take advantage of a tax credit for energy efficient appliances, you should add HVAC system upgrades to your home improvement checklist.
According to the United States Energy Information Administration, home HVAC systems account for nearly 48% of a home’s total energy consumption. There are several parts of the system you can improve, independently or together.
You may want to consider a programmable thermostat set to adjust your home’s temperature for the winter heating season and the summer cooling season, and to adjust based on time of day. Why pay to heat or cool an empty house? Programmable thermostats are easy to install and use, and will pay for themselves with the money you save on your heating and cooling bills.
One of the most cost-effective upgrades to an HVAC system is air sealing. If your home is drafty it’s a good candidate for air sealing. A trained and certified contractor can find the cracks and gaps where air is leaking in or out, and seal them with caulk and weatherstripping. This will make you and your family more comfortable, and reduce your heating and cooling energy costs.
Are HVAC system upgrades the right choice for you?
Understanding home heating energy performance just got a whole lot easier. The new Heating Energy Assessment Tool (HEAT) from AREVS is a RESNET Approved, easy to use web-based application that tells home energy professionals, homeowners, and renters whether or not a home is in need of energy retrofits or upgrades. Using patented algorithms that are normalized for house size and geographical location, and information from its utility bill, HEAT provides a heating energy audit for a home in under 5 minutes. A simple A+ through F grade range gives instant understanding of home heating performance.
Advantages for Professionals:
• A “first line” assessment tool to determine if a home needs further envelope assessment.
• Can be used for performance-based quality assurance verification for homes that have undergone weatherization upgrades.
• Eliminates need for on-site inspections.
• Offers opportunity for en masse initial ratings.
• Pre-qualified leads sent directly to your sales team.
• Use HEAT as a complement to asset-based rating programs.
Advantages for Homeowners:
• Economical and easy to use.
• Information from a single energy bill results in a custom HEAT Assessment in less than 5 minutes.
• Determine energy consumption and costs for heating, air conditioning and hot water.
• Provides an accurate assessment of whether a home is in need of energy retrofits or upgrades.
• Provides an accurate assessment of whether a home is in need of a further envelope assessment from a certified RESNET professional.
• Verify energy savings achieved through weatherization and energy upgrades.
• Know a home’s PITI+E payment: Principal, Interest, Taxes, Insurance, and Energy – the true cost of home ownership.
Introducing HEAT: Heating Energy Assessment Tool, Powered by AREVS
For Immediate Release
May 29, 2019. Queensbury, NY –
AREVS: American Residential Energy Verification System is proud to announce its newest product, the Heating Energy Assessment Tool (HEAT). HEAT is a web-based software application that yields extremely accurate home heating and cooling energy efficiency ratings, and projects annual heating, cooling, and domestic hot water costs. HEAT can be used with data from one heating season utility bill. No physical inspection of the premises or tools are necessary. This allows both off site and en masse ratings of the national and international housing stock.
HEAT is available for personal and professional use immediately. Please visit http://arevs.us for a free AREVS rating.
HEAT is the ideal first line heating energy assessment app for homeowners and professionals who need to know exact heating and cooling energy consumption and costs,” said Dean Durst, Co-founder and CEO of AREVS. “No other tool is as accurate or easy to use. All you need is one utility bill and 5 minutes to find out how a home is performing, if it needs an asset based energy audit, weatherization upgrades, or retrofit work to improve energy efficiency and lower the home’s operational costs. Understanding a home’s heating energy efficiency just got a whole lot easier!
Rising energy costs and a fast paced residential housing market mean that renters, sellers, buyers, brokers, and lenders need to accurately value home energy consumption costs and efficiency. HEAT is the only performance based home energy efficiency rating software available in the US.
AREVS develops software and data sets for the Home Performance, Real Estate, and Energy industries. Founded in September 2012 by Dean Durst and Jeff Hiscox, AREVS launched the Home Energy Performance Calculator in February 2013. The Calculator is available for professionals as a stand-alone web application. HEAT launched in July 2014 and is available for all customers as a stand-alone web application, a white label web application, or a website plugin.