Deciding to replace the HVAC unit is a big decision. It is a significant investment and will impact your home’s comfort and energy efficiency. First, think about the reasons you want to buy a new unit. Is the current unit too old, inefficient, or broken? If so, replacement is probably the best option.
A new unit may also be the best option if you have expanded your home or made other changes that have increased your energy needs. A new, efficient unit guarantees both energy savings and improved comfort.
Talk to an expert such as Year Round Heating & Air Conditioning to learn the best replacement options for your home. Here are the considerations to make.
The Type of HVAC Unit
The most common HVAC units are standard split units, ductless mini-splits, and packaged units. If you had a central air conditioner and furnace, you would likely replace it with a split unit consisting of an outdoor compressor and condenser connected to an indoor evaporator coil.
A ductless mini-split is similar to a split unit but doesn’t require ductwork. Packaged units are self-contained and usually placed on the roof or outside the home. They are less common in residential settings. Talk to an expert on the possibilities of upgrading your system, what the exercise entails, and the benefits.
The Size of the Unit
Once you’ve decided on the unit type, decide on the size. The square footage of your home, the number of windows and doors, the insulation, and the climate determine the size of the unit. A small unit, although cheaper, works harder and is less energy-efficient. It will take longer to cool or warm the space.
A unit that’s too large will cool the house too quickly, resulting in uncomfortable temperature swings and high humidity levels. It will also cycle on and off more frequently, wasting energy and putting unnecessary wear and tear on the system. The best way to determine the right size is to have a load calculation done by an HVAC contractor.
The Efficiency of the Unit
When shopping for a new unit, you’ll see two efficiency ratings: Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) and Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER). The SEER rating is the cooling efficiency, and the EER is the unit’s cooling efficiency at a specific temperature. The higher the rating, the more efficient the unit, and the more you’ll save on energy costs.
Generally, units with a SEER of 13 or higher are considered high-efficiency. The most efficient units have a SEER of 21 or higher. If you live in a hot climate, look for a unit with a high EER.
For areas that experience extreme winters, choose an HVAC unit with a high Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF). This rating measures the heating efficiency of the system. A good HSPF rating is around 8.
The Desired Features
Newer HVAC units offer more features than ever before. You can now find units with smart technology that allows you to control the temperature from your phone, self-diagnose and repair, and purify the air as they heat or cool your home.
One of the most popular features is a zoned system, which allows you to control the temperature in different areas of your home. It’s beneficial if you have a large home or rooms used differently. A humidity control system is also desirable, especially in areas with high humidity levels.
The Cost of the Unit
HVAC units are a significant investment, and the price varies depending on the size, type, and efficiency. Consider your budget but don’t compromise on quality. High-quality units last longer and are more energy-efficient. To get the best value, buy from a reputable dealer and hire a qualified technician for the installation.
Research and Consult Experts
There’s so much to consider when buying a new HVAC unit. You’ll be satisfied with your purchase if you take the time to do your research and consult experts. However, a poor installation leads to subpar performance even with a suitable unit. Don’t overlook the importance of a professional installation job.