One of the most important aspects of keeping your home a comfortable, efficient and safe place to live is ensuring that your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system is working properly. The average lifespan of an HVAC system runs from 10-20 years. If your system is more than 10 years old and/or you’ve seen a sudden increase in your energy bills, it may be time to start looking for a new system.
Before you spend thousands of dollars on a new system, make sure you have an HVAC professional check the system for air leaks. These may be the cause of your problem and they are much less expensive to treat than replacing the whole system. And, of course, make sure your home is properly insulated. This is something you can do yourself or through a professional insulation company.
If you discover it’s time to buy a new HVAC system, here are some things to consider:
Choosing the Right HVAC Size/Capacity for Your Home
A system that is too small won’t keep you comfortable. A system that’s too big won’t be efficient. While many companies may simply want to replace your current system with one of the same size, you should ensure your contractor uses the Manual J load calculation. This formula uses information such as the square footage of your home, the amount of insulation, number of windows, outdoor shading, building materials, and the size of your family to find the perfect size of your HVAC system.
Efficient Heating and Air Conditioning
The energy efficiency of your new furnace, air conditioner or heat pump is one of the most important decisions when choosing a new HVAC system. While this can quickly get confusing (checking the seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) for air conditioners or the average fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) for oil and gas furnaces), the easiest way to ensure you’re getting the right efficiency for the region of the country where you live is to ask your HVAC professional. You can also check out the best energy-efficient HVAC products on the U.S. government’s Energy Star website.
Accessories for Better Air
There are many accessories you can add to your HVAC system, including a humidifier (furnaces can sometimes make indoor air dry); ultraviolet lamps, which can kill viruses, bacteria, mold, dust mites, and other pests; and air cleaners or purifiers.
Get Multiple Quotes
HVAC system costs vary widely depending on the type of system, whether you’ll need new ductwork, and what accessories you’re getting, if any. Get several quotes from reputable companies and be sure and ask about things like cost of maintenance plans and warranties, which can also greatly affect your system’s cost in the long run. Keep in mind that a good quality HVAC system can improve the value of your home.
Ask About Maintenance
Just as you visit your doctor for your annual checkup, your HVAC system should have a professional inspection every year to ensure your system is running at its peak and is delivering clean air to your home. Regular inspection can also prevent inconvenient breakdowns to help ensure your family remains safe and comfortable throughout the year. Paragon’s comprehensive maintenance plan includes cleaning and replacing filters, checking heat exchangers, measuring gas pressure and cleaning and adjusting burners among many other services.
Reputation of the HVAC Company
Paragon Heating and Home Comfort Solutions has a sterling reputation. We serve homeowners in the Snohomish and east King County areas. We pride ourselves on high quality workmanship, exceptional service and trustworthiness. We’ve been reviewed on Home Advisor, Angie’s List, Yelp and many other sites, with consistently high ratings. With Paragon, you can rest assured you’ll be getting the best HVAC system for your home at a reasonable price.