Every Sacramento homeowner knows that heating and cooling your home can be costly. While you may never before have heard of “degree days,” this is a subject that can help you assess how energy efficient your home is, so that you can do whatever is necessary to increase efficiency and make your home more comfortable.
Outside air temperatures are used in calculating degree days, and this formula can be used for both heating and cooling degree days. To determine the heating degree days for a particular day, add the high and low temperatures together. Divide this total by two. If the number is 65 or above, you don’t have a heating degree day that day. If the number is below 65, subtract that number from 65 to determine the number of degree days. For example, if the day’s high is 70 and the low is 50, your average is 60. Subtract 60 from 65 to find out that you had five degree days that day.
Degree days help you increase efficiency and save money in several ways:
- You can compare degree days with the amount of energy you are using in your home, whether it is electricity, natural gas or heating oil. Use your energy bills to do this.
- If you have made investments such as adding more insulation or installing a new heating and cooling system, you can determine if your investment is paying off in energy savings.
- Suppose you have replaced your air conditioner or furnace over the past year; by comparing this year’s energy costs using degree day figures to those of last year, you can determine if you are saving money.
- Knowing this information can help you make decisions about whether you need to upgrade your insulation, switch out your old heating and cooling system for an energy efficient model, or even whether you should switch to a cheaper type of fuel for heating your home.
- Have you built on to your home? By calculating degree days, you can even determine how much adding a room has impacted your energy costs, if any.
This formulation simply helps you keep track of whether the changes you have made have added to your energy efficiency or not. This helps you know when your air conditioning or heating method is not working efficiently so that you can have repairs made or upgrade, or whether adding insulation may do the trick.
ALL YEAR Heating, Air, Solar has provided customers in the greater Sacramento area with exceptional products, services and installation since 1969. Have questions about heating and cooling? Give us a call, we’re glad to help.
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