As HVAC systems age their operating efficiency decreases. The result is higher operating costs, and less comfort. Also older systems will require more repair and maintenance to operate. A newer system will be quieter, more efficient and need fewer repairs.
The efficiency could actually be lower than before simply because the newer unit is not designed to work efficiently with older equipment. Attaching a new outdoor unit with older indoor equipment could also reduce the life of the system as a whole for the same reason.
Another important issue is the type of refrigerant. R-22 was the go to refrigerant for most residential and light commercial applications in the past. However, due to EPA guidelines this refrigerant is being phased out for a newer refrigerant: R-410a. The new refrigerant will not work with older equipment.
If your system uses the older refrigerant you have two options. The first is to replace the old unit with an R-22 unit. We do not recommend this for several reasons:
Or you can replace the whole system. The new system will:
To help control some of the factors that trigger allergies and asthma its best to take a three step approach:
If you are interested in any of these options please give us a call. We will be happy to help you.
If your Carbon Monoxide detector goes off get out of the home immediately. If you and another person in the house wake up with a headache and/or having difficulty waking up seek medical attention immediately. Then call your HVAC contractor to assess the problem.
Here is some further information:
HSPF – Heating Seasonal Performance Factor. This measures the energy efficiency of Heat Pumps only. Same as above, the higher the number the more efficient it is. The minimum HSPF is 7.7.
Putting dollar amounts to SEER ratings is difficult to do accurately because there are so many factors that are different with each household and each type of equipment. The basic idea is this: if you have a 10 SEER unit, and your options for a replacement are a 13 SEER and a 17 SEER the 17 SEER system will save you more money than the 13 SEER system.
AFUE – Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency. Everything that burns has an AFUE from wood stoves, to ultra-efficient gas heaters. The minimum AFUE for natural gas furnaces is 80%. The higher the percentage the more efficient it is. In other words on a 60% AFUE furnace, for every $1.00 spent on gas, 60 cents heats the house and 40 cents goes up the flue vent. The highest efficiency natural gas furnace available is 96%. If you have propane ask us how a 90%+ furnace can help save you money.
Refrigeration is the practice of taking heat from one place and moving it to another. Your air conditioning system during the summertime uses this process to take heat from your home and move it outside, thus making your home cooler and more comfortable.
A Heat Pump can not only do that, but it can also take heat from outside and move in inside, even if it is cold outside! Why do this? Because this process is much more efficient than using an electric heat source to heat your home, and if you don't have natural gas source available this might be the most cost effective option to you.