If turning on your furnace makes you cringe in anticipation of high energy bills, there are several things that can be done to improve the efficiency of the furnace which will reduce your utility bills. The easiest step to take is to regularly replace the furnace filter. The furnace filter removes airborne particles that can be harmful to the furnace. If the furnace filter isn’t replaced regularly, dust and other pollutants restricting airflow to the furnace makes it work harder, causing reduced efficiency. Next, it is highly recommended that a programmable thermostat be installed in the home. Heating your home at the same temperature while you’re away from the home as when you are home is wasteful. Manually turning the thermostat down a few degrees before leaving the home for an extended period can be a hassle. A programmable thermostat automatically adjusts the temperature in your home based on the day and time, to keep you warm and save you money. Annual furnace tune-ups are extremely important if reducing energy costs is your objective. Just like regular oil changes for your vehicle, annual tune-ups keep your furnace running efficiently while extending the life of the system. Without regular tune ups, your furnace can experience a shortened life span, as well as costly and preventable break downs. Also, zoning your HVAC system allows for different zones in your home to be heated and cooled to different temperatures. This saves money and improves the efficiency by heating your home to more even temperatures. Lastly, old, worn, or improperly sealed ducts can result in up to 20% of your heated air escaping on its way from your furnace into your home. By taking the time to have your ductwork professionally sealed, less of your heated air will escape.