We service ALL brands makes and models!
Free Install Estimate

Complete Guide to HVAC: What It Means and How to Choose the Right System for Your Home

June 17, 2022

Your HVAC system is an essential utility. We rely on our heating cooling to keep our homes comfortable all year-round. It can also be a big part of your monthly energy bills. Spending time to understand more about your HVAC system offers a lot of benefits. You can increase its efficiency and choose the right replacement equipment. We’ll share the key details about the most common HVAC systems. After, we’ll go over how to find the best HVAC system in the Bay Area.

What Is HVAC?

HVAC stands for Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning. This utility system keeps indoor temperatures comfortable. It also takes care of air quality through filtration and humidity control equipment. Collectively, these systems work together to keep our homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Your standard HVAC system will have three main components: heating, cooling and ventilation. Some places won’t always have both heating and cooling, like temperate climates or in older homes.

Most HVAC systems work by circulating air in and out of your home. Depending on the type of system, heat can be added or taken away to regulate the indoor temperature. Air ducts can bring the air to every room of the house, but they’re not always necessary. Many HVAC accessories like air filtration equipment are fitted within the ductwork for the highest possible efficiency.

There Are Different Types of HVAC Systems

HVAC technology has come a long way in terms of overall design and efficiency. Homeowners have more options than ever when choosing an HVAC system. There are several different models, with one or more being the ideal combination for your comfort needs. These range from popular air conditioners and furnaces to alternatives such as the heat pump.

Air Conditioners

An air conditioner is a groundbreaking piece of technology that pulls heat out of the air with a special substance called refrigerant or coolant. Extra heat and moisture are pumped out of the air and ventilated outdoors. This is incredibly efficient for keeping cool through the hot summer months.

Furnaces

The trusty central furnace has been the most popular way to warm your home for decades. It commonly runs on natural gas or oil, combusting the fuel to produce heat. This heat warms the air that moves through your home while vapors are carefully ventilated outside. Furnaces use a pilot light or electronic hot surface ignition system to begin a heating cycle.

Mini-Splits

Some HVAC systems don’t use central ductwork to provide heating and cooling. A ductless mini-split system is one such type of equipment. An indoor and outdoor unit are instead connected by copper piping that delivers climate control. You can install multiple indoor units to heat or cool your home. Some models offer air conditioning while some can handle both heating and cooling.

Heat Pumps

Heat pumps are an increasingly popular alternative for heating and cooling your home. In contrast to central furnaces and air conditioners, heat pumps don’t create their own source of climate control. Instead, they pump heat in or out of your home with air circulation. Reduced energy use can help you save on your monthly bill. Heat pumps are ideal for milder climates and can even be installed along with other equipment.

Garage Heaters

This smaller kind of HVAC system is used to keep garages warm in the colder months. Many garages are unfinished, so they can be particularly chilly to spend time in. Garage heaters use fuel like electricity, natural gas or propane to generate heat. This heat is distributed with power fans. The garage heaters themselves are often manufactured to be portable. They can be relocated around the garage freely or fitted to the wall. Some models are even mounted to the ceiling.

How Do I Select an HVAC System?

When choosing a new HVAC system, there are several things to think about. You want to find a balance between efficiency and your unique comfort preferences. You can narrow down potential options with the following tips:

Find the right size for your home: Bigger isn’t always better. In fact, a furnace that’s too powerful for your home may end up costing you in higher energy bills. New HVAC systems should be the proper size for maximum effectiveness.

Focus on energy efficiency for long-term savings: High energy efficiency is one of the best ways to earn back more savings. Energy-efficient equipment puts less demand on essential components and doesn’t need to run as long for climate control. Try to find models marked with the ENERGY STAR® rating for particularly efficient models.

Explore financing options and special offers: Lots of local service companies extend special financing for new installation. You might receive special offers for the system itself as well as other perks such as discounts on preventive maintenance plans.

Entrust new installation to qualified professionals: A new HVAC system is a quality investment. You can get the most out of a new air conditioner or heat pump with experienced technicians. They perform air conditioning installation quickly and efficiently, ensuring you receive maximum benefit from the beginning.

Your local expert technicians can review your home and suggest the perfect HVAC system for you. If you’d like to begin the process, give Contra Costa Heating & AC a call at 510-343-9841 today.