Does My Home Need High-Efficiency Heating and Cooling Equipment?
Do you need to install a high-efficiency unit in your Colorado home?
It depends on your budget, home size, utility costs, and heating and cooling needs.
A high-efficiency heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system saves money because it uses less energy than standard heating and cooling equipment. It generally costs more upfront, but the payoff comes in more comfort, better indoor air quality (IAQ), and lower energy bills.
A Bryant dealer can guide you through efficiency ratings and product features, helping you choose your next HVAC system. You can find a dealer you can trust through our Bryant Colorado directory.
We work with dealers in Northern Colorado, Southern Colorado, the Western Slope, Denver Metro-North, Denver Metro-South, and Denver Metro-West. Click our Find A Dealer link.
The Bryant dealers in our network will consider your home’s size, layout, cold and hot spots, insulation, and utility costs before recommending a solution for heating and cooling your home.
What Is High Efficiency?
All HVAC equipment has efficiency ratings. The annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating tells you how efficiently a furnace turns fuel into heat. The higher the number, the more efficient the furnace is.
A 90 percent rating, for example, means the furnace converts 90 percent of the energy it uses into heat.
Standard-efficiency furnaces are rated in the 81-83 percent range. High-efficiency furnaces have at least a 90 percent AFUE rating. Top ratings range from approximately 96 to 98 percent. The minimum rating is 81 percent.
Air conditioners and heat pumps carry Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio 2 (SEER2) ratings that measure how efficiently the equipment cools your home. The higher the number, the more efficiently these cooling systems operate. For example, Bryant’s top Evolution™ System air conditioner has a SEER2 rating as high as 24. Its most efficient heat pump carries a 22 SEER2 rating.
The minimum SEER2 rating for air conditioners installed in northern U.S. homes, including Colorado, is 13.4, and the minimum for split-system heat pumps is 14.3.
The heating seasonal performance factor 2 (HSPF2) indicates heating efficiency in heat pumps. The minimum HSPF2 is 7.5. Bryant’s top-of-the-line Evolution™ heat pump has a 10.5 HSPF2 rating.
More Than Ratings
Now that you know what ratings indicate, should you select a new heating and cooling system with the highest numbers?
Not necessarily. If you live in a small home, a 1,100-square-foot bungalow, for example, you may not see a significant change in your utility bills with high-efficiency equipment because you may not use much energy to heat and cool your home.
Larger homes with standard or low-efficiency units typically yield the most savings.
However, high-efficiency HVAC systems do more than save energy and money on utility bills. They offer better moisture control, are quieter, improve air quality, and have extended warranties. For those reasons alone, you might want to consider a high-efficiency system.
Bells and Whistles
High-efficiency HVAC units offer features you will not find in a standard system. For example, a high-efficiency gas furnace uses two heat exchangers. The second heat exchanger captures energy from furnace exhaust gases and turns it into heat. A furnace with a 96 percent AFUE wastes less energy than a unit with an 81 percent AFUE and a single heat exchanger.
Modulating furnaces, variable-speed compressors, and multi-speed blowers are the norm for high-efficiency HVAC systems. They offer precise temperature control and save energy. Ask a Bryant dealer if the best heating and cooling solution for your home is a high-efficiency system.
Worried about paying for a high-efficiency unit? Federal income tax credits can help. According to ENERGY STAR®, federal income tax credits are available through 2032 and help lower the cost of energy-efficient home upgrades by 30 percent.
The maximum credit for qualified air conditioners and furnaces is $600, and $2,000 for air-source heat pumps. See the ENERGY STAR website for qualification specifics.
Talk to a High-Efficiency HVAC Expert
Get expert advice about high-efficiency HVAC equipment through Bryant Colorado‘s dealer network. A Bryant dealer will offer the best heating and cooling solution for your home. Choose a reliable company through our directory. Click Find A Dealer.