Monthly Archives: December 2013

Nine Free Things You Can Do to Lower Your Winter Energy Bills

Nearly half of your energy bills go to heating and cooling your home, so Getzschman Heating and Air Conditioning wants to lower your energy bills. Finding ways to lower your heating bill in the winter can mean substantial savings so here is an easy-to-follow list of tips for lowering your heating bills. Hopefully, by combining as many as you can, you’ll see some savings on your next heating bill. This post will cover the free things you can do. Check back for an article listing ways to save money with small and medium sized investments you can make.
But for now, let’s stick to the free things you can do to lower that energy bill. These won’t cost you a dime but will save you money anyway.
  1. Close any vents in unused areas of your home and keep those doors shut. Why pay to heat the entire home when you only use a few rooms?
  2. Don’t use kitchen and bathroom fans unless absolutely necessary. They are vented to the outside and will suck heated air out of your home. According to the Department of Energy, in just one hour, a hard-working bathroom or kitchen fan can expel an entire houseful of warm air which your furnace has to work hard to replace.
  3. Replace or clean your furnace filter so your furnace doesn’t have to work so hard. Don’t forget to do this once a month. (Okay, technically, this isn’t free since you have to buy replaceable filters, but most people have them handy and it’s important to do even if energy savings isn’t your main goal).
  4. Rearrange any furniture that is blocking a vent to take maximum advantage of that air flow.
  5. Take advantage of the sun – it’s free! Open drapes and blinds on south facing windows during sunny hours. During evening hours, keep windows covered to slow the loss of heat from the room.
  6. If you have an attached garage, keep the big door shut as much as possible.
  7. Don’t use a traditional wood burning fireplace to heat – it will suck more warm air out the flue than it will return in heat from the fire. Also make sure the damper is closed when it is not being used.
  8. Lower the temperature on your water heater. Usually lowering it to 115-120 degrees reduces power use without users noticing too much of a difference.
  9. Lower your thermostat a couple of degrees when you are home and wear socks and sweaters.
While these seem like simple steps, combining them will save you money. And, as we mentioned above, they don’t cost you a thing! If you’d like more ideas on how to lower your energy bill, check back for our post on small investments that will save you big on energy bills. Plus, if you’re thinking about making energy improvements to your home, check out our Omaha ReEnergize Program. Until then, stay warm and snug and enjoy this Omaha winter weather! Warmest wishes from the G-Force team.

10 Questions to Ask Before Upgrading Your Home’s Furnace

street in omaha during the winter time

Getzschman Heating and Cooling has replaced hundreds of furnaces since we began serving the Omaha area in 1960. Whether it was because a homeowner wanted to upgrade to a more energy efficient system or because a home’s furnace was on its last leg and the homeowner wanted to avoid a break down in the middle of winter. Each time we replace a furnace, the G-Force team works with the homeowner to help them make an educated decision about the furnace they are purchasing.

If you are considering upgrading your home’s furnace this winter season, be sure that you are informed about the system you are purchasing. Ask the heating and cooling company that you are working with the following questions!
1.   What is the efficiency level (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) of this unit?
2.   How much should I expect to save in energy savings by upgrading to this furnace?
3.   Does this furnace upgrade include a warranty? If so, what is covered under this warranty?
4.   What is the average age for this furnace model?
5.   Is a new thermostat included with the purchase of this furnace? If so, is it a programmable thermostat?
6.   When I purchase a new furnace, is a routine maintenance package included? Learn about the G-Force Maintenance Program, Save Money With a G-Force Maintenance Agreement.
7.   How often should I have this furnace inspected and maintained?
8.   Is this an Energy Star certified furnace?
9.  What size filter is required? How do I change the filter in this new model?
10.  What air filtration options are available?
Knowing the answers to these questions will help you make a well-informed decision about your home’s furnace upgrade. For more information about furnace replacements or to learn about the options available at Getzschman, give us a call today.