Reasearch round 1 (how can heating and cooling be made more efficient)

I have begun my research on ways that humanity could possibly make their heating and cooling systems more energy and gas efficient or just improve heating and cooling as a whole. For my first round of research I decided to look into easier ways that people could make their temperature systems better. If you are interested in saving money in the long run then I recommend reading through my notes.

The thing I found most astonishing during my research was the amount of energy it takes to regulate your home temperature. I discovered that temperature related functions take up fifty percent of your total energy bill. The average family spends $2,200 on household energy a year that means $1,100 is going towards heating and cooling. However, what I found even more surprising was that you could reduce that $1,100 by twenty percent with some maintenance and sealing (1).

So, what do you need to do that save that $220 (20% of $1,100). The first step is to check you ducts for any leaks, these leaks could lead to heat escaping and being used in unnecessary areas. Another simple thing you could do is clean and maintain parts of your house’s heating system, check the system often if it is in need of another cleaning or maintenance (1). Also, avoid turning off the temperature system if you’re not going to be away for a long period of time as rebooting the system takes a great amount of energy (2). These are smaller easy to do tasks that reduce wasted energy usage, but if you’re looking to improve your house even farther you have to do a couple more serious tasks. A great saver of energy is “programable thermostats” these devices let you program them to change the temperature in the room depending on the time of day. For example, if you leave the house and are not home during the day then you could program the thermostat to lower the heating when you’re not home and raise it again when you return home, (this is best if you have a constant unchanging schedule). The last big change to do is check the age of your heating machine, generally speaking if the machine is over ten years old then you should change it (1). I the situation where you have to change your heating system occurs then I recommend replacing it with a new system with a EER (energy efficient rating) of 45 or above (2). Another thing to consider is that you get the right size equipment for your house, you want it to not be to larger that it producing and excess amount of heat, but also not small enough that it is unable to produce the desired amount of heat. As for the type of heating machine “heat pumps” are the most energy conserving machine to heat a house (3).

You may also consider lowering your house temperatures to save money which I recommend, however, be aware that 18 degrees during the day and 16 degrees during the night are the lowest safe temperatures to be living at (3).

I hope you found this information useful. If you have any thoughts or suggestions fell free to express your opinion in the comments. I am planning on doing new sources of energy and new machines that could possibly improve heating for my next round of research.

Sources

  1. https://www.energystar.gov/ia/...e%20FINAL_9-4-09.pdf
  2. http://www.climatemaster.com/residential/what is-the-most-efficient-heating-cooling-system/
  3. https://www.energywise.govt.nz...heating-and-cooling/
Original Post

Hey Max!

This is very useful information that everybody should know about, and your research was very easy to read - great work! While it's important to use your heating system efficiently, it would also be a good idea to take other steps, such as putting on a sweater and/or blanket instead of cranking up the heat. 

Here are some websites you can use for your next round of research:

http://www.green-energy-effici...nt-home-heating.html

http://www.level.org.nz/energy...ting-energy-sources/

http://smarterhouse.org/heatin...ypes-heating-systems

I'm eager to see what you find next. Good luck!

Hi @Max Wu (Charles Best - in class)!

Very informative, it certainly is surprising isn't it for what you find in life huh? The prices of those bills your parents get. Expenses are just baffling. 

There are some good ideas mentioned, for sure useful. Nice job! 

Here's some websites that can be of help: 

https://www.theguardian.com/en...ntral-heating-system

https://energy.gov/sites/prod/...ting_sourcebook2.pdf

Keep it up!
~Jim
CA
CBSS

Hi Max,

Your research is very intriguing! I believe everyone should know about how much heating and cooling costs and you explained very well how we can reduce the price. Here is a very useful link about the different types of heating some people have at their home to save money on their bills. I look forward to your next round of research!

https://www.theguardian.com/en...ntral-heating-system

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