The efficiency of your HVAC unit depends in large part on how well and how quickly conditioned air is moved throughout the system. In your furnace or air conditioner, powerful blower motors send heated or cooled air into your home’s ductwork and out to end points at registers and vents all over your home.
HVAC motors are not standard equipment, however. Older HVAC motors are usually permanent split capacitor (PSC) motors. They are common in many types of heating and cooling systems. They are not as expensive as other types of motors, but are less efficient and use more energy during operation. PSC motors operate at only one speed, cycling off and on in response to temperature changes in your home. Considerable amounts of energy can be wasted during these on-and-off cycles.
Modern furnaces often contain a type of variable-speed blower motor that improves the efficiency and function of the entire system and results in improved home comfort. ECM, or electronically commutated motors, operate at variable speeds depending on temperature settings you’ve selected for your house. They are much more efficient than PSC motors since they operate only at the level needed for meeting pre-set comfort levels. Fan motors, blower motors and air handler motors can all be variable-speed ECM motors.
Since ECM motors operate at different speeds, their performance is more consistent. They use less electricity for general operation – up to 60 percent less – and do not waste as much energy during high-demand cycles. ECM motors are quieter and offer better levels of cooling comfort. They improve indoor air quality because they can be set on fan-only function, continually circulating air through the heating or cooling unit’s air filters and trapping more airborne contaminants.
Since 1983, Overland Park Heating & Cooling has provided reliable residential, commercial, and industrial heating and cooling services to customers in Overland Park, Johnson County and the greater Kansas City area. Contact us todayfor answers to your questions about variable-speed blower motors, and whether an ECM-equipped HVAC system is right for your home comfort needs.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about variable speed blower motors and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.