The demand for HVAC contractors and other efficient equipment is rising. As the temperatures increase and most consumers look for more ways to stay comfortable indoors, installing an HVAC system in a building is more important than ever. That’s why you need to know more about how HVAC installations work and which type of system you are going to install.
Hire the Right Air Conditioning and Heating Professionals
Even if you have high-quality HVAC products, you won’t get their true worth without a licensed professional to install them correctly to each manufacturer’s specifications. It goes without saying that HVAC units will not perform to their fullest capacity and fail early if not installed right. It can also invalidate a factory warranty.
Pick the Perfect HVAC System
Before installing an HVAC system, you can narrow down the choices based on the climate where you live. For example, on the Texas Gulf Coast, our climate is hot and humid much of the year and it rarely freezes. This means that having a reliable air conditioner or heat pump will be one of the hardest working appliances in your home. As a result, your central air and heating system are critical to your home’s comfort. There are other factors you need to know before picking the right HVAC system for your home or office.
First, you must think about the unit’s size. Cooling capacity is measured in tons, and heating is measured in BTUs. The size determines how much cooling or heating your home can accommodate. See this helpful AC and heating calculator for a rule of thumb. It’s wise to make sure you get the right size, and an HVAC company can help you with this task. If you buy an air conditioner that is oversized for your home, it will get cold but it won’t remove enough humidity and it can create a mold problem over time.
Keep in mind that many HVAC manufacturers offer a variety of trim levels in different sizes and configurations. It’s smart to ask your HVAC technician for a quote and have them specify the exact model so you know exactly what you’re getting and you can research it online.
Energy efficiency is important to consider. Sometimes a more expensive variable-speed HVAC system can be so efficient that it actually pays for itself over time. You can look for Energy Star ratings and look for a high SEER rating.
SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s a fancy term that specifies how much energy an AC unit will use over the course of a year. Most AC units have a 13-20 SEER rating. Mini-split units can be even more efficient. Ask your HVAC technician if you have questions about energy efficiency, and they can help you balance efficiency and cost.
Before you decide on the cheapest HVAC unit model available, think about the unit’s life cycle costs and what maintenance is recommended. High-quality products come with a higher initial cost. However, their long-term costs can be much lower.
If you get a high-quality unit from a respected manufacturer, expect lower repair costs if you keep up with maintenance. This can make it a more practical choice despite the high initial investment price. Consumer Reports is a good third-party evaluator of different HVAC system models and manufacturers. The one thing they cannot evaluate is how HVAC systems perform when installed in different applications. The expertise of the technician installing your HVAC equipment is a very important consideration.
Decide Whether Extra Air Purification Is Necessary
Air purification is a concern that has been at the forefront of our minds, especially in the last year. The truth is that adding air scrubbers, UV lamps, and electrostatic media filters can provide more comfort and peace of mind. Cleaner air can improve health and also keep your HVAC system working more efficiently, a benefit that many overlook.
If anyone in your home has asthma or allergies, cleaner air can be especially helpful. Installing an air purification system can clear out mold problems caused by water leaks and eliminate viruses and other airborne contaminants. It keeps your HVAC system and ductwork cleaner, too.
If you’re interested in adding UV lamps, electrostatic media filters, or a whole-home air purification system to improve indoor air quality, an HVAC technician should be able to present several options that can work for any budget. Also, be sure to ask if there is any maintenance required. For example, UV lamps must be replaced every other year or so. If you want to solve indoor moisture and contaminant problems, we recommend having a licensed professional install these for you.
A subpar installation means your air conditioner or heater will likely waste energy and not keep you comfortable. It also wears out parts early, causing more repairs than we might expect. That’s a lose-lose situation. You could end up wasting the money you invested in the first place. To avoid this, we recommend hiring a licensed HVAC contractor who can do it right the first time.