Choosing the Best HVAC System for Your Vancouver WA Home
Choosing a new HVAC system for your home is a task that takes some thought. End up with the wrong one, and you can expect inflated electricity bills, along with uncomfortable temperatures indoors. There are several factors that one needs to consider to ensure you find a system that’s worth its value and that will serve your home well. If you’re looking for an HVAC in Vancouver, WA, here are a few tips that can help you to make the right choice.
1. Think About the Size
Choosing the right size HVAC is an extremely important aspect. Installing the wrong size HVAC, either too small or too large, and the unit will need to spend more energy providing the proper cooling or heating inside the house.
Moreover, frequent fluctuations in the temperature and the overall load on the unit can also hike up your maintenance costs. This means paying for more repairs to your system, and sooner rather than later. At worst, you may need to replace the HVAC unit a lot sooner than you expected.
Utilize a qualified HVAC contractor to guide you in finding the correct size HVAC system needed for your home. Don’t purchase a unit just because it works fine in someone else’s house, as the dimensions and household factors may not be the same.
2. Choose Whether You Want a Packaged or Split-Ductless System
Many people prefer an HVAC system with a split, as these units are more convenient, easier to install, and safer. They can also reduce your utility bills by up to 30 percent. As there are no ducts in this model, there is no energy lost due to leaking or clogged ducts. Since these units are small, they also offer more flexibility. These units tend to be on the expensive side to install, so weigh your expected savings against the up-front price. Keep in mind that split-ductless systems don’t do an excellent job of heating the indoors during the winter season if you live in an extremely cold climate. You may need a backup system.
Another option to consider is a packaged HVAC. A packaged system gives you access to everything in one model—evaporator, compressor, and condenser. Some of the models may also come equipped with a gas furnace or heating coils. These units are highly compact and work very well if you’re facing space constraints. It’s also relatively cheaper to install packaged HVAC systems, especially when compared to split HVAC. However, you can experience limited energy efficiency, which can adversely impact your utility bills.
3. Don’t Skip the Ratings
The efficiency ratings of an HVAC system are a crucial factor when you’re choosing one for your home. Ratings help you to assess the potential electricity consumption and to keep your electricity bills in check. Here are a few ratings you must take into account:
- Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER): EER represents the cooling capacity of your air-conditioning system. A higher EER denotes a more energy-efficient air conditioner. EER also helps you understand how efficiently the HVAC will perform indoors, depending on the temperatures. Usually, it’s recommended to opt for an EER of 12 or above, as it denotes a more energy-efficient HVAC.
- Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF): HSPF represents the heating efficiency of an HVAC unit. Ideally, one should opt for HVAC with an HSPF rating between 7.7 and 13. A higher HSPF indicates better efficiency of the heat pump.
- Seasonal Energy-Efficiency Ratio (SEER): SEER represents the energy efficiency of a cooling unit. It represents the average EER over various outdoor temperatures, ranging from 65 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit. SEER is distinct from EER in that the EER is calculated in a laboratory setting with a simulation of fixed outdoor and indoor temperatures.
4. Take Stock of the Ductwork
If you’re opting for a ducted HVAC system in Vancouver, WA, a well-maintained duct system is essential for the efficient functioning of your unit. Make sure to thoroughly inspect the ductwork before you have your chosen model installed. Keep an eye out for dirt and debris in the ducts, as they can impact the functioning of the HVAC and even damage the equipment.
Broken, blocked, or leaking ducts can result in up to 30 percent loss of air, which adversely impacts the output of warm or cool air and inflates your electricity bills. Moreover, prolonged use of such ducts can give rise to mold and moisture issues.
5. Be Careful about the Thermostat You Choose
Ensure your HVAC has a digital thermostat, as you will enjoy a more consistent temperature, especially when the outdoor temperature fluctuates constantly. An analog thermostat is best avoided, as inaccuracies are more common.
You can also look for a programmable thermostat to maintain the correct temperature indoors even when you’re outdoors or away from home. The pre-programmed settings allow the HVAC system to change the temperature automatically and can be controlled remotely. You can also save up to 1 percent of your energy consumption, resulting in lesser expenditure on utility bills.
6. Quality Trumps Everything Else
There’s no substitute for a good-quality HVAC unit, and settling for the cheapest one in the market just because it’s the cheapest isn’t the wisest option. You may feel like you have snagged a great deal, but paying to maintain a substandard HVAC system can add up quickly. Also, bear in mind that an improperly installed cheap HVAC unit could be an even greater source of anxiety for your family.
Instead, it’s better to do your research and go for a high-quality HVAC installed by an expert. Get quotes from multiple HVAC contractors before you settle for one. Be mindful of your budget and housing needs and communicate those to your contractor right in the beginning.
Feeling confused about how to choose the right HVAC in Vancouver, WA? The team of experts at Entek is here to ease your worries. Get in touch with us, and we’ll help you find a suitable system for your home. We follow a systematic approach when it comes to picking an HVAC—we start with evaluating your home needs and locating the areas that need improvement. Then we recommend a model that we feel will work best. So if you’re in the market for a new HVAC, contact us for a free estimate.