After an HVAC professional services the furnace, there are a few steps homeowners can take to keep it running smoothly. Most importantly, perhaps, is changing the air filter regularly, at least every three months, according to Energy Star, which is a branch of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A clogged air filter will restrict air flow, which can also negatively affect your health through exposure to environmental contaminates.
Another energy savings tip, HVAC professionals say, is using a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat can save you up to 10 percent on energy bills, if you dial it down seven or eight degrees from the normal temperature setting — the U.S. Department of Energy recommends a setting of 68 degrees — for eight hours a day, whether it's during the work day or at night, according to DOE.
"There have been a lot of studies that have proven having it serviced and maintained can save up to 30 percent on your energy bills," Mills said.
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Kris Conover, a technician for Aaron York's Quality Air in Indianapolis, says it's also important to remember to maintain new furnaces, not just old ones.
"Most people don't understand [and when they] put a new system in think, 'I’ve got a new system, so I won't have to maintain it,'" Conover said. "Well, there's nothing greater from the truth than that, because manufacturers require you to have regular maintenance and to have record of that. If you would ever have a warranty claim, that manufacturer has the ability to ask you for those service records. So not only does it make sense from a perspective of the longevity of it, but if you have a warranty, you want to make sure you keep it intact."
Editor's note: This is an updated version of an article originally posted on Oct. 2, 2013.
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