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Heating and Air-Conditioning

HEATING

Furnaces have changed throughout the years and manufactures are now providing the homeowner with more options to choose from.
The '80% furnaces' are now your basic standard furnaces. They come in three styles which will meet even the most demanding homeowner.
  • The "Single Stage' is the first type of furnace you can use to heat your home. This style works with the gas valve 100% open and the blower speed on the medium high setting. This style will meet your basic needs and is the least costly to install.
  • The 'Two Stage' is the next upgrade to the basic and has a gas valve with 2 settings, 60% open and 100% open. These settings can save you an extra 10-15% on your gas usage. Also included is a 2 speed blower that allows for a slower air speed when the gas valve is on its low 60% open setting giving a quieter air movement.
  • The 'Two Stage Variable Speed' is the King of the Hill when it comes to furnaces. This furnace delivers the savings that the 'Two Stage' offers but also incorporates the 'Variable Speed' blower which is described as amazing. The blower operates on DC current allowing the motor to run so slow that you have to wonder if it’s on at all. The quietness is loved by every homeowner that has one installed. The 'Variable Speed' motor doesn't stop with just quietness but also delivers savings to your power bill by using the same amount of energy as a 40-watt light bulb. Simply put this furnace will always make you smile every time you use it and you will never regret that you went with the best.
The '90% furnaces' are the next level which has all the same styles as the '80% furnaces'. The 'Single Stage', the 'Two Stage' and the
King of the Hill, the 'Two Stage Variable Speed'.

AIR-CONDITIONING

Air Conditioning and installations are generally easy but the equipment needed is not very well understood by most homeowners. There are most often 3 components of Air Conditioning involved during an installation. The "Indoor Coil" which is always on or under the furnace or air handler. The "Outdoor Condenser" which is put on top of some sort of concrete or brick pad outside near a wall. Finally, the "Lineset" which is the conductor of Freon between the 2 major components allowing the gas to flow back and forth from coil and condenser. You also can't forget the 220 power needed to run the equipment.
Air Conditioning efficiency has come a long way since years ago. The way you rate air conditioning is by the "Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating" or as it's called the seer rating. Years ago the rating was 8-10 seer. A high efficiency air conditioner years ago would be a 12 seer. Today the minimum basic rating number is 13. Now just to bring you up to speed on the seer number. The higher the number, 18 seer, will use 56% less energy to perform the same job as 13 seer equipment. Now the cost for these higher rated seer numbers does go up as you step up from 13 to 15 to 16 to 18 seer.  Also some outdoor units come with a 2 step compressor lowering your power consumption even more.
Now these units generally only come in the highest rating like 18 so you will have to expect a higher cost for that equipment but over time the return on your investment has a big payoff. Also just remember that 15 seer and higher will get you that US Government energy rebate of up to $300.00 tax credit.
The latest update information just took place 1-1-2010. All Freon or gas used in air conditioning has changed from the standard R-22 to R-410a. This newer gas came on the market some years ago and has been progressively introduced into newer equipment knowing that on 1-1-2010 all new equipment will be required to use the more friendly environmental R-410a Freon gas.
The EPA has new rules on HCFCs and HVAC Equipment so you must consult with a qualified HVAC contractor before you have your new or existing equipment serviced or replaced. The new R410a Freon gas cannot be used on pre-existing R-22 systems.