The specific HVAC equipment you choose can have a big impact on energy efficiency in your home, and that’s not just down to the specific heating and cooling unit you choose.
Equipment and Ductwork
Ductwork and even your programmable thermostat panel can impact energy usage, too. Simply choosing a highly efficient heating and cooling unit will help, but if you have leaking ducts or you can’t do much with your thermostat panel other than turn the system off and on, you’re probably going to lose some efficiency.
When you get an energy efficient system installed, have your contractor check your ductwork for leaks, and if the thermostat control panel that comes with your chosen system doesn’t allow you to set different temperatures at different points in the day, consider upgrading to a different control system. Make sure your thermostat panel installs in an area that makes logical sense, too. Don’t put it right next to your front door, in a cold basement, or directly in the path of sunshine coming through a large window.
Zones and Stages
Multi-zone heating and cooling can be quite efficient if it’s installed properly. Using multiple zones in a multi-story house, one for each floor of the house, can be the best way to get heating and cooling with an efficient focus on the actual temperatures in each part of the house. With a multi-zone system, you’ll be able to cool down a hot top floor while the systems on the bottom two floors take a break. With only one zone in the whole house, your HVAC system has to provide heating and cooling for the entire house, even if only one part of the home needs temperature control at any given moment.
Multi- and single-stage HVAC systems are, on a high level, conceptually similar to the multi-zone concept. In a single-stage system, your HVAC equipment has two power levels: on or off. In a multi-stage system, there’s more nuance between those two extremes, and if you need only a little bit of heating or cooling, the system can use a low power level to get the job done. This saves energy during those transitional seasons that are either a bit too warm or chilly but don’t require the full-blast power that you need during the height of summer or winter extremes.
Insulation and Filtration
The HVAC system itself isn’t the only energy efficiency factor when it comes to heating and cooling your house. If your home isn’t properly insulated, you’re going to waste a lot of energy. For example, if you have a lot of draughts coming in from windows and doors, your furnace needs to run more often and for longer to combat the incoming cold air. And if your home isn’t insulated well enough, all that air conditioning effort won’t last long as the home fails to retain the cold air and keep temperatures down.
Additionally, the filter you use in your HVAC system can impact efficiency. At the most basic level, a clogged filter creates a physical barrier. This makes it harder for forced air to travel out of your HVAC system, through your ductwork, and into your home. A slower transit time means the system has to run for longer before your thermostat senses your set temperature. Keeping your filters clean keeps your HVAC airflow running efficiently.
Energy efficiency factors in home HVAC system can help save you money and make your house more comfortable. If you want to learn more, contact us for your free in-home consultation.