Last updated on July 2nd, 2024 at 03:33 pm

In the Pacific Northwest, more new homes are being built with central air conditioning systems than ever before. However, our area still lags behind the rest of the country, with about 20% of new homes not being built with central AC. If you find yourself in the market for a new PNW home, it’s imperative that you look into its built-in heating and air conditioning options.

Fortunately, there are many great options for builders and homeowners starting from scratch. At Paragon, we recommend these heating and air conditioning options for new homes.

Heat Pumps

heating and air conditioning

What They Are

Heat Pumps, despite their name, can perform both heating and cooling functions. You can use them to keep your home comfortable throughout the whole year.

A heat pump works by moving heat energy between the air outside and the air inside the home. If you are heating your home, it takes heat energy from the outdoors (even in cold weather) and transfers it in, while if you are cooling your home, it does the same process in reverse. There are models that can be used with houses built either with a ducted system or without one.

Why We Recommend Them

We recommended heat pumps to customers who would like the convenience of having both heating and cooling performed by the same unit. They can work well either as the main cooling unit or a supplementary one.

Since heat pumps transfer air instead of generating it, they are energy efficient and more environmentally friendly than other heating systems as long as the temperature outside isn’t too cold.

The Best Heat Pump Models For New Homes

  • If you value energy efficiency and want to save on energy costs, then the Coleman Echelon Series is for you. This series includes two models, the HC19 and the even more efficient HC20.
  • If you want reliability and excellent all-season performance, there is the Coleman LX Series. You have several model choices, including the ENERGY STAR® certified CH6, the HMH7, and the TH4.
  • If you need to heat or cool a room not connected to ductwork, the Daikin Single Zone has you covered. This is a ductless model that is good for cooling small spaces or single rooms. In addition, there are several other models of Daikin heat pumps built to fit your needs.

Natural Gas Furnaces

What They Are

A natural gas furnace is a furnace that runs on natural gas. It works by detecting the temperature in the house to maintain a comfortable level of heat. Once the air inside the house falls to a certain temperature, the igniter will ignite the main burner, creating heat that then disperses throughout the home.

Why We Recommend Them

We recommend gas furnaces for almost any home. They work well for homes in colder climates, which means that they are also effective in moderate climates like the PNW. Though they have a higher installation cost than some other heating options, their day-to-day operating cost will be more affordable, depending on the cost of natural gas in your area.

The Best Gas Furnace Models For New Homes

There are two gas furnace models that we recommend for our customers:

  • The Coleman TM8Y 80% two-stage furnace has high efficiency and lower energy costs. Its fan motor gives dependable air distribution, keeping you home at your ideal comfort level. The TM8Y also has an ECM motor. All new furnaces are now required to have an ECM or more efficient motor for federal efficiency standards.
  • The Coleman TM9Y 96% efficient two-stage ECM Motor takes everything that is good about the TM8Y and makes it better. It’s quieter, more efficient, and more environmentally friendly.

Electric Furnaces

What They Are

Electric furnaces, as the name suggests, run on electricity. Like natural gas furnaces, they create heat once the house temperature drops below a certain level, but instead of igniting and burning natural gas, they use electric coils to produce heat.

Since these furnaces use electricity to run, they do not rely on combustion like natural gas furnaces. This means there is no chance of them leaking chemical emissions into your home.

Why We Recommend Them

Electric furnaces work well in moderate climates like the Pacific Northwest. They are safer than natural gas furnaces because they do not create carbon monoxide, and this makes them more energy efficient and environmentally friendly than some other heating options.

Running on electricity does tend to make operating costs higher than what you would see with a natural gas furnace. However, if electricity is inexpensive in your area or gas is more expensive, it may be worth the investment.

The Best Electric Furnace Models For New Homes

The Coleman LX Series air handlers are known for their high level of efficiency and reliability. These electric units are small in size, which makes them easy and less costly to install. They have a quiet operating noise level and need little maintenance.

Central Air Conditioning Systems

heating and air conditioning

What They Are

A Central Air Conditioning (AC) System is a system that utilizes ducts and fans. The unit sits outside the home and uses a cold evaporator coil and refrigerant to cool the air before distributing it into your home through its ductwork. This system makes central AC ideal for dispersing cool air throughout a wide area.

Why We Recommend Them

We recommend these systems for their reliability. Central AC is a great option for houses that already have ductwork built in or where the owner is open to adding ductwork.

If you have a large home and are looking for a cooling system that can reach all corners of your house at once, then central AC may be the solution you’re looking for.

The Best Central Heating and Air Conditioning Systems For New Homes

  • The Coleman 13 SEER series is popular for its reliability, and it is perfectly optimized for the PNW climate.
  • The Coleman 14 SEER is quieter and designed in a way that will help you save money on energy bills.
  • The Coleman 17 SEER is the most energy efficient while still giving a strong performance for your household cooling needs no matter what furnace you have.

Whether you are moving to the Pacific Northwest from out of state or are simply moving into a newly built house, it is good to know if your home is built with central AC in mind. Even if it is not, Paragon can help find the right heating and cooling options that fit your needs.

There are many heating and cooling options that are good for new homes. Contact Paragon to learn more about heating and air conditioning systems in the Puget Sound Area.