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Over 60% of your annual energy costs go towards heating your home, so it’s worth heating it as efficiently as possible. Use the following resources to keep your home comfortable and your energy costs down.
In addition to the tips below, visit the Energy Hub for additional tips and tricks and explore energy saving resources for your home.
Ductless Heat Pumps: These are suitable for places with no ductwork installed. These can be single port or multiport depending on the number of zones in the home requiring heating/cooling. These are typically installed outside the home and connected to ports inside.
Ducted Heat Pumps: Also known as a central heat pump. This type of system may be suitable if there is a pre-installed ducting/vent system in the home. These heat pumps provide both heating and cooling through the existing duct/vent systems in the home.
Heat pumps operate on the principle of heat transfer from sources like air, ground, or water with the help of a refrigerant and electricity. Electric Heat pumps do not burn fuel to create heat and are up to 3x more efficient than an electric furnace or baseboards. ‘Cold climate’ air source heat pumps are designed to operate in temperatures as low as -25 to -30 C. For extreme cold temperature conditions, electric heat pump systems may have a backup heat source like an electric heating coil in the air handler unit.
Don’t force your HVAC system to work overtime to compensate for poor insulation or drafty windows. If your home’s thermal envelope — the exterior barrier that keeps you warm in winter and cool in summer — is compromised, seal in the heat with insulation, caulking and draft-proofing.
For maximum efficiency, clean your heating and cooling system every three to five years. Turn off the power on your HVAC. Unscrew the air duct covers from walls, floors and ceilings, and clean the grates with a brush. Use the accessories hose on your vacuum to give your ducts a thorough clean.
Clogged furnace filters diminish your home’s air quality. Plus, they consume more energy and force the system to work harder. Check the furnace filters monthly, and remember to clean or replace them every 90 days, depending on whether they’re disposable or permanent.
Clanging, knocking or popping sounds may be signs of worn-out or loose parts in your heating system. If you hear any unusual noises from your furnace, it may be time for repairs. Call a certified HVAC technician to inspect your system.
Once a year, invest in a tune-up with a qualified HVAC technician to ensure your system is running at optimal efficiency. Preventative maintenance will help spot potential issues before they become bigger problems.
To find a qualified licensed technician, call the Heating Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute of Canada (HRAI) at 877-467-4724 or check out the contractor locator portal.
While high-efficiency units tend to have a higher purchase price, lower operating costs mean you will spend less over time.
Think about upgrading if:
The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating, found on the official Canadian EnerGuide label, is a measure of how efficient your furnace is. The higher the rating, the more efficient the model.
Learn more on how you can save by Fuel Switching
Choosing a contractor
What to look for in an agreement