HVAC upgrades can represent a big investment. However, they can also provide a big return on investment, whether that’s in the form of increased comfort, energy savings or lower lifetime costs.
To choose the right HVAC upgrades for your Kansas City-area home, you should be familiar with HVAC terminology. Besides the most common air conditioning terms, below are some HVAC upgrade terms you should become familiar with:
- AFUE – Annual fuel utilization efficiency. AFUE rates how efficiently a furnace converts fuel into usable heat. AFUE is expressed as a percentage; a 90 percent AFUE, for instance, means that 90 percent of the potential energy in the fuel makes it into your home as heat.
- HSPF – Heating seasonal performance factor. HSPF rates the heating efficiency of air-source heat pumps. Heat pumps can actually provide more heat energy than they consume in fuel energy, so HSPF is not a percentage; instead, it tells you how many British thermal units of heat are produced from a single watt of electricity.
- COP – Coefficient of performance. This is used to rate the efficiency of geothermal heat pumps. COP can be easily translated into a percentage; a COP of 3.25, for instance, represents 325 percent efficiency. You can multiply COP by 3.4 to get the equivalent HSPF and compare the efficiency of different heat pumps.
- Dual-fuel – Combining an electronic heat pump and a gas furnace to keep your home comfortable while minimizing energy costs.
- Ductless mini split – A heat pump system that has multiple indoor heating/cooling air-handling units tied to a single outdoor compressor/condenser. Because the indoor units are spread throughout the house, there is no need for a duct system. This makes them efficient and easy to install. They’re also useful when trying to heat or cool a room addition.
- Variable-speed blower – An HVAC upgrade that allows your indoor blower fan to operate at more than one speed. Since it’s not constantly running at full blast, it allows for more efficient and inexpensive heating and cooling of your home.
When considering HVAC upgrades, consider calling the experts at Overland Park Heating & Cooling. We can help you choose the most effective upgrades for your home’s unique heating and cooling needs.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Overland Park, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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