Understand Your Home’s Numbers for Safety & Efficiency
Do you know your home’s numbers? Chances are, you can rattle off the square footage, lot size, age, the year you remodeled your kitchen, the property tax amount, and so on without pausing for a breath.
But what about the numbers that help keep your home comfortable, safe, and efficient?
Today, we’re sharing with you the temperatures, levels, and ratios that every homeowner should know. Read on to learn more.
Indoor Air Temperature
Keeping your home comfortable is important, but you don’t want to waste energy and spend more money than you have to. So in the summer months, try to keep the thermostat at 78 degrees F and 68 degrees in the wintertime. For even more savings, install a smart programmable thermostat that allows you to control the temperature from just about anywhere via your smartphone or tablet and set schedules that match your typical comings and goings.
Indoor Humidity Level
Excess humidity is not only uncomfortable, it can make it more likely for mold or bacteria to grow, lead to condensation on floors and walls, and cause problems for allergy and asthma sufferers. On the other hand, low indoor humidity levels can cause your nose and throat to feel dry and scratchy, irritate your skin and eyes, and cause delicate wooden furnishings and instruments to warp. Ideally, indoor humidity levels should be between 30 and 50 percent.
Water Heater Temperature
The U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting household water heater thermostats to 120 degrees F. Many water heaters are factory set to 140 degrees F which can present a burn and scald hazard. Plus, leaving the thermostat at such a high setting can cost you an additional $61 a year just to reheat the water sitting in the tank. Add in the amount of hot water used daily to shower, bathe, do laundry, and wash dishes, and you could be spending an additional $400 each year.
Refrigerator and Freezer Temperature
A refrigerator that is too warm allows food to spoil more quickly, leading to food waste and exposing you to food poisoning. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends setting refrigerators to no higher than 40 degrees F to ensure foods are chilled properly and bacteria aren’t able to multiply. As for freezers, the FDA recommends setting the thermostat to 0 degrees F to help food last longer and protect the health of everyone in the home. Even if your fridge and freezer have built-in thermostats, use an appliance thermometer to verify temperature.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
The Environmental Protection Agency recommends installing carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of a home. It’s not just about how many you install, but where. If you’re installing a carbon monoxide detector on a wall, place at least 6 inches above the floor and at least 6 inches below the ceiling. If installing on the ceiling, it must be a minimum of 6 inches away from the wall. Also, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation to ensure proper placement and correct operation.
Radon is present in both indoor and outdoor air. While outdoor radon disperses quickly, high levels of radon indoors can have serious health consequences, including lung cancer. If the radon level in your home is greater than or equal to 4 picocuries per liter (pCi/L), the EPA recommends having a radon mitigation system installed.
Air Conditioner SEER Rating
If you’re considering purchasing a new air conditioner or HVAC system, it’s important to understand its SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating. SEER ratings are calculated by dividing a unit’s cooling capacity by the amount of power it uses. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy-efficient the unit will be.
At Correct Temp, we have numerous ways to keep your home cool, comfortable, and safe. For annual preventive maintenance, expert repairs, and new system installation, contact us today.