What type of HVAC system is best for me?

When looking to replace your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system, selecting the right one can be dizzying, with a large array of products, brands and characteristics to choose from. Often, we replace our existing (possibly broken) system with one of the same type (e.g., heat pump, air conditioner, furnace), but there are still many factors to consider.

The table below highlights and compares common features of different HVAC systems (click to expand).

No matter what type of HVAC system you ultimately choose, there are other considerations to think about, including humidity control, thermostat type, homeowner upkeep and contractor maintenance. Keeping these issues in mind will help you maximize comfort, safety and durability for the long run.

Getting a more efficient HVAC system, like a ductless heat pump, will not automatically save you money, though. Along with system efficiency, energy savings depend greatly on how you interact with your thermostat and adjust set-point temperatures.

We hope that even with the large number of options, this resource will make choosing a new HVAC system less overwhelming. If you are unsure of where to get started, a reputable HVAC contractor can be a big help. In addition, the U.S. Department of Energy created an HVAC guide with a decision tree to assist with determining if it’s time to replace.

Source: https://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/publications/pdfs/building_america/hvac_guide.pdf

If you have further questions, please contact Jonathan Coulter, senior consultant, at jcoulter@advancedenergy.org or 919-857-9016.