You probably make use of your air-conditioning and heating system throughout the year to keep your home's indoor temperatures comfortable, but all that use can result in wear and tear as well as higher-than-necessary energy bills. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to minimize HVAC wear and tear and lower your monthly power bills. Having your system inspected once a year is important so small problems can be caught and addressed before they become too serious. Consider implementing the following tips and tricks too.

Seal Your Air Ducts

With a forced-air HVAC system in place, your household can easily lose up 30 percent of the air movement that's needed in your system for optimal performance due to cracks and leaks that go undetected. The good news is that you can seal the leaks to improve HVAC performance. Unusually high power bills during summer or winter, rooms that feel stuffy, and spaces that are seemingly hard to keep heated and cooled are all signs that your air ducts should be sealed. To take care of the problem, just use some thermal metal tape to seal the edges of all the air ducts you can reach, including those found in your attic and basement.

Replace Your Thermostat

You can decrease your monthly power expenses by up to 15 percent and decrease HVAC wear and tear by simply installing a programmable thermostat in your home. Your programmable thermostat will enable you to manage indoor temperatures even when you're away from home, which will minimize the workload your HVAC system is faced with and keep your energy bills in check. You can turn the heater off after you leave the house in the winter and turn the air conditioner on a few minutes before arriving home on a stuffy, hot day. Programmable thermostats come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, and that should make it easy to incorporate one that complements your home's décor.

Plant Some New Deciduous Trees in the Yard

Landscaping with some new deciduous trees is not only likely to increase your overall property value by up to 20 percent, but also should help lower your energy costs and take some pressure off of your HVAC system. Throughout the summer months, deciduous trees are packed with leaves that will shade your home from the sun's heat, and they lose those leaves in the winter so the sun can naturally warm temperatures up inside.

This will lessen the need for your HVAC system and keep your energy bills under control year-round. For optimal results, plant your trees near windows that get direct sunlight at some point during the day and in front of your HVAC's exterior unit. Some gorgeous deciduous-tree options include dogwood, magnolia, and even cherry.

These tips and tricks should be easy to implement and should save you quite a bit of money on both energy and HVAC repairs as time goes on. Consult a company like Cape Fear Air Conditioning & Heating Co., Inc. for more information.