Air Conditioning Service 101: Top Factors To Consider When Choosing An HVAC Unit | Fort Worth, TX
Winters and summers in Fort Worth, TX, and most regions in the US can be unforgiving, making investing in an efficient heating and air conditioning system a worthy consideration for homeowners. In 2015, the United States’ Residential Energy Consumption Survey discovered that over 90 percent of all American homes had some heating and air conditioning system.
Besides helping keep you and your family comfortable regardless of the temperature conditions outside, HVAC systems also promote air indoor air quality. This often happens by pressurizing your home’s indoors to facilitate seamless air circulation, conditioning the air in occupied spaces for comfort, and eradicating indoor air pollutants via the ventilation system.
However, as helpful as these appliances may be, problems may arise that may require you to contact a heating and air conditioning service for replacements. For starters, if you’ve been consistently calling your preferred heating and air conditioning service company, it could be a sign that you need to have the system replaced during your next service call. Also, ever-rising energy utility costs may require you to consult with a reliable HVAC technician for you to find heating and AC replacement solutions that can suit your needs.
Another instance that may require you to seek an HVAC system replacement is if your unit has served you and your loved ones for more than 10 years. On the same note, you should probably consider replacing your home’s heating and cooling infrastructure if it still uses the R-22 Freon. This is because the Environmental Protection Agency discovered that the freon had harmful effects on both humans and the environment. In that regard, it has been phasing out the manufacturing and importation of this type of freon, which means that if your home’s unit uses it, your air conditioning service technician may not be of much help when repairs are needed.
With a working knowledge of how HVAC units benefit homeowners and some of the common reasons that may lead to their replacement, below are a few factors you should keep in mind when shopping for a replacement option.
Type of System
Now that you’ve already decided to schedule a meeting with a professional heating and air conditioning service technician for heating and AC replacements, you should keep abreast of the types of HVAC systems you can choose from. Ideally, there are four main categories of HVAC units, with each type offering a unique set of advantages and disadvantages. You can ask your trusted heating and air conditioning service provider to install a split system, hybrid HVAC unit, packaged unit, or a duct-free heating and air conditioning apparatus.
Split heating and cooling systems, as the name suggests, are divided between units, one for cooling and the other for heating. They’re pretty popular and consist of outdoor and indoor components that are relatively easy to distinguish. The external units feature the cooling system, which uses compressors, coils, and the refrigerant to cool indoor air as well as fans to blow out warm air.
Split HVAC systems also have a heater that heating and air conditioning service specialists install in the basement or any other available storage space for heating purposes. The heat produced by these indoor units is often distributed by either a fan or evaporator.
To help manage the temperature, HVAC technicians may install a thermostat, which allows you to maintain desired temperatures even when you’re not around conveniently. Most split heating and cooling systems come with pre-installed humidifiers and purifiers that help keep the indoors of your home comfortable regardless of the external weather conditions. They’re widely accepted since they have minimal maintenance needs and are eco-friendly.
Past that, if the split system may not be a viable option for you, you can ask your heating and air conditioning service provider to install a hybrid HVAC unit. Although hybrid heating and cooling systems share several similarities with split HVAC units, they have notable features that distinctively differentiate them from the latter. Hybrid HVAC units have become more popular among homeowners in Fort Worth, TX, and beyond due to their ability to cut down on heating and cooling energy costs, a feature that distinguishes these units from all the other types of heating and cooling apparatus.
This fundamental difference can be determined by the homeowner, which is another reason they’re famous. With hybrid units, you can conveniently switch from gas power, which offers a quicker and more complete heating process, to electric functionality, which is more efficient and silent. This ability to choose the mode of operation particularly suits persons living in areas that experience mild climatic conditions.
In such places, homeowners can use electric heat to warm up their indoors since the temperature may not be too cold. However, hybrid systems may still use traditional ducts and thermostats just like split HVAC units, but with the guarantee of energy conservation and reduced energy costs.
Apart from split and hybrid heating and cooling units, your heating and air conditioning service provider near Fort Worth, TX, may also recommend duct-free or mini-split HVAC systems. They’re unique, and despite their high installation costs, they guarantee worthwhile benefits depending on your specific needs and applications.
These heating and air conditioning systems are often installed as individual units in each room, facilitating independent control. Your air conditioning service technician may mount the units on the walls, attaching them to an outdoor compressor. The installation service may be quite expensive, and that’s why mini-splits are recommended for new home additions such as garages or additional buildings. Duct-free units are also ideal for restaurants or event venues since they allow tenants to control their indoor air conditions individually.
Another benefit of these systems lies in energy conservation since only rooms or spaces get heated, thereby avoiding energy wastage. In this context, if you’re contemplating downsizing your residential living space, a mini-split HVAC unit would be ideal for you as it will only condition the air in the room you’re in, saving you a significant amount of cash in the long run. Be warned, though, they have intensive maintenance needs, which you should strive to always keep up with lest you may end up incurring unnecessary repair or replacement costs.
If you’re convinced that none of the above-discussed HVAC types mentioned above suit your heating and cooling needs, you can request your heating and air conditioning service technician to install a packaged heating and AC system.
Packaged heating and AC components are quite common because they contain both the heating and cooling apparatus within a single unit, often stored within the house in the attic. Their compact design means that they can be used in smaller homes or dwellings with limited indoor space. Besides promising optimum energy efficiency.
They’re also easy to maintain and perform well in areas with warmer climates since they may not be as powerful as other types of systems. While most models are electrically operated, newer models feature a combination of both gas and electric capabilities.
Your Household Needs
When contacting your preferred heating and air conditioning service contractor for HVAC replacement options, you should know precisely how much conditioned air your home may require for your comfort. This value may be based on a wide variety of factors, including the square feet your home covers, its thermal and physical characteristics, and the homeowner’s personal heating and cooling requirements.
With this in mind, if you’re not sure of the measurements of your home or your specific heating and air conditioning needs, feel free to speak to a heating and air conditioning service professional for informed recommendations.
However, sizing regarding heating and cooling doesn’t necessarily imply the size of the unit in feet or inches, but rather its operational capacity in terms of British Thermal Units, often abbreviated as BTUs. For the furnace, heating and AC professionals use BTUs to describe the amount of heat per hour it can produce. In contrast, BTUs regarding air conditioners typically describe the amount of heat the unit can remove from indoor air per hour.
Essentially, BTU requirements may vary depending on factors such as the square footage of your home, how many windows it has, or the level and type of insulation present. In other cases, heating and AC experts may consider the airtightness of a building when determining its BTU requirements.
BTU estimates may fail to guarantee accuracy when shopping for an HVAC unit, which is why you should always work with a qualified heating and air conditioning service technician during this process. Experienced artisans can survey your property to determine the appropriate BTU requirements of your household with the help of industry-grade HVAC sizing software.
After that, they can also help find an HVAC system with similar capacity features that your home needs. When planning for an HVAC replacement or installation, you should never forget that failing to accurately distinguish your home’s BTU requirements may have some costly consequences.
For starters, when the heating and cooling system is too small for your home, the amount of conditioned air produced may dwindle significantly, leaving your indoors unbearably hot in the summer or extra cold during winter. As a result, the system works harder as it struggles to meet your home’s excessive heating and cooling demands, wasting money and energy in the process.
This extra effort also increases the chances of an unexpected breakdown since it may exacerbate the rate of wear and tear. On the other hand, an HVAC unit that’s too large may generate excessive amounts of conditioned air that you may not need within your home, resulting in significant energy and money wastage.
If you’ve decided to schedule an air conditioning service to replace your home’s HVAC system, then you should ensure that you pick a unit that ranks higher in energy efficiency. The best heating and AC systems currently use 30 to 50 percent less energy to produce the same amount of conditioned air as designs created in the mid-1970s did.
On the same note, newer AC models can help homeowners in Fort Worth, TX, and beyond shave between 20 and 40 percent off of their monthly energy expenditure. In that context, you can determine the efficiency of an HVAC system by analyzing its SEER, HSPF, and AFUE ratings. If you’re having trouble discerning the numbers, your preferred heating and air conditioning service contractor can help you select a high-efficiency heating and cooling system.
The SEER rating refers to an air conditioner’s efficiency, and it stands for the seasonal energy efficiency ratio. Ideally, the higher the SEER rating an AC has, the higher the level of efficiency. The US Department of Energy requires that all air conditioners sold and manufactured within the country have a minimum SEER rating of 13. In that case, any appliance with a rating exceeding 14 is considered to be highly efficient while the average rating for high-efficiency equipment stands at 18. The highest-rated air conditioners typically have a rating that’s in the range of mid-20s. This rating not only applies to the efficiency of the AC but also the cooling processes of furnaces.
Conversely, AFUE ratings relate exclusively to the efficiency of heating systems. Whether you’d like your air conditioning service technician to install a gas or electric furnace, you must consider the system’s AFUE ratings if energy efficiency is your goal. This rating depicts how much of the inherent fuel in the unit the component consumes to generate usable heat.
As you shop for HVAC options, your heating and air conditioning service provider may recommend that you pick equipment with a higher AFUE rating since they’re the most energy-efficient. They may also advise you that electric furnaces may have a higher rating than their gas counterparts.
The HSPF rating, also known as the seasonal heating performance factor, relates to the heating processes of furnaces or heat pumps. Although most efficient models feature a rating of above 9.3, professional heating and air conditioning service providers often recommend units rated at 8.2.
One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Fort Worth, An HVAC Company in Fort Worth, TX You Can Trust
If you need comprehensive heating and air conditioning service solutions near Fort Worth, TX, you can rely on the skilled experts at One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Fort Worth. Our technicians can help with the installation, repair, replacement, and maintenance of any HVAC unit. Regardless of whether your home needs a standard packaged unit or a newer ductless model, we’re here to help.