Did you know that your HVAC system is the biggest energy user in your home? Together, your air conditioning and heating make up about 46% of your home’s annual energy consumption. That’s almost half!
More and more homeowners want to reap the benefits of eco-friendly systems in their homes. And as the biggest consumer of energy, choosing a “green” air conditioner is a great way to not only reduce your carbon footprint but also decrease your energy usage.
If you’re in the market for a new AC system, let’s go over your options with eco-friendliness being the most important factor under consideration.
Central Air Conditioning: Can Be “Green”
Although central air conditioning systems haven’t been considered to be eco-friendly, advancements in central AC technology have made them a much more energy-efficient choice.
The efficiency of central AC systems is ranked according to its SEER2 rating (SEER2 recently replaced SEER). SEER2 stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio. In a nutshell, it’s the ratio of the cooling output of an AC over a typical cooling season.
The higher the SEER2 rating, the more energy-efficient it’ll be. In fact, The minimum SEER2 rating for the Southwest region is 14.3 for all AC systems below 45,000 BTU and a 13.8 SEER2 rating for all residential central air systems 45,000 BTU and above.
ACs with a higher SEER2 rating often have two features that provide greater efficiency: a 2-stage or variable-speed compressor, and a variable-speed blower. As the name implies, this lets you vary the power setting between low and high. This allows you to adjust the power based on if it’s moderately warm vs incredibly hot outside.
Heat Pumps: Very “Green”
If you’ve been Googling “air conditioning installation near me,” there’s a strong chance that info on heat pumps came up. If you don’t know about heat pumps, you might be wondering why something with “heat” in the name comes up on a search for ACs.
The term “heat pump” is kind of a misnomer. Heat pumps don’t pump heat, they move heat from one place to another. In the summer, a heat pump moves the heat in your home outside. In the winter, it taps into the ambient heat outside and moves it inside your home. A heat pump performs both heating and cooling.
Heat pumps are considered to be incredibly eco-friendly. That’s because they run entirely on electricity (and refrigerant) and don’t burn any fossil fuels. In fact, it’s been estimated that heat pumps can transfer 300% more energy than they consume. Just like with central AC systems, you can choose between levels of efficiency by looking at the HSPF2 rating (for heating) and SEER2 (for cooling).
Ductless Mini Splits: Very “Green”
Ductless mini split systems consist of a single outside unit and multiple air handlers that are wall-mounted in various rooms of your home. Ductless mini splits utilize heat pump technology, so their benefits are the same as above. But they can be more energy efficient than a ducted heat pump for 2 reasons.
The first is that with no ductwork, you’re not losing conditioned air through leaky ducts. The second is the ability to cool (and heat) a single zone or room of your home.
Hometown Heating and Air Conditioning is your trusted resource for air conditioning services. Reach out to us today! Your comfort is our business.