If you are planning to upgrade your HVAC system or install a new one, it is best to do a little market research and identify the new innovations and improvements that various brands offer every few years.
After all, an HVAC system is a big investment and it is going to last you for many years. Brands often come up with new features and conveniences which you must look out for.
It is no use spending on a system only to realize that it no longer holds valid licenses for operation or that replacement parts are not easily available. Take a look at some features and innovations that you must consider while installing a new HVAC system.
1. Energy efficiency
The maximum cooling efficiency of an air conditioner is gauged by the SEER rating. Old systems show a SEER rating of 9 or 10 which is quite low today. Recent air conditioners are very efficient and can have a SEER rating ranging between 13 (which is low efficiency) to more than 25.
Getting a new system that has a high SEER rating will definitely enable you to increase energy efficiency and lower your monthly utility costs.
While older HVAC systems had air handlers with fans that could only run at one high speed, current systems have variable speed fans so they can be run on a lower speed when it is not very hot. This speed change means that you will save more energy and also experience less noise.
The refrigerant R22 or what was commonly known as Freon has proved to be detrimental to the environment and to the ozone layer and so the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has decided to stop anyone from using it.
It is being phased out and will soon not be available. The ban on manufacture or import of this refrigerant will mean that if you have an older HVAC system that requires this refrigerant, repairs will become very expensive and hard to do for you. So, choose new systems that do not use R22.
Although durable, sheet metal ducts that are present in old HVAC systems are not insulated and are noisy as well. Newer systems make use of fiberglass lined or fiberboard ducts that are more energy efficient and quiet. Recently, flexible ducting, that bends easily and denim ducting (which is environmental friendly) is also available.
As opposed to the single stage compressors in old HVAC systems, which only operated on one setting- ON or OFF and were very loud; new systems have dual stage compressors that can run at a lower speed too.
There is also a new technology called VRF (Variable Refrigerant Flow) that only runs according to current requirements, is quiet and can control humidity well which anyone in the Bay Area should be happy with even if the humidity levels are not Georgia like.
6. Convenient controls and diagnostics
Smart, programmable thermostats and sensors help you control the temperature setting and zoning in the house without that much effort.
Better diagnostics in current systems help identify problems if any and make it easier to solve them.