To make the process of replacing your home’s HVAC easier, the ModHVAC Calculator offers system recommendations and a quick estimate of your replacement costs to save you the guesswork. To use the tool, just slide the bar in the green box to match your home’s square footage. Then enter your city and state below and click Calculate Cost. Seconds later, you’ll be provided with a set of options for your new HVAC unit.
Replacing HVAC Systems in New York
A good HVAC system in important in New York, where the winters can be brutally cold and the summers are always hot. Whether you are installing a new system or replacing an old one, new energy efficient HVAC systems can help you save money while feeling more comfortable in your home.
Replacing Existing Equipment in Your New York Home
Debating whether or not to continue to repair your old HVAC system? Well, it’s a good rule of thumb to replace your HVAC system when the cost of repairs approaches 30% of the value of your heating or cooling system. If your existing unit is more than 12 years old, a new system can be 50% more efficient, which means you’ll start recouping the cost of your investment with your utility savings immediately.You’ll also avoid years of costly repair bills for an outdated system.
If the temperature in your home is consistently uncomfortable, it may be a sign that your HVAC system is on the fritz, or that you have duct problems, or inadequate insulation. Dust, pollen, and mold spores can invade your home from leaky ducts that pull dirty air from attics, crawl spaces, and basements. Sealing your ducts may be a solution, as well as adding air cleaning equipment. Either way, you definitely want to have an HVAC professional evaluate your home as a properly installed system, ductwork, coils, and filters will save you money and could impact your health.
Heat Pump Installation in New York
A heat pump is essentially an air conditioner that can also function in reverse to heat your home. In the summer you have an air conditioner that can cool your whole home and in the winter you get energy-efficient heat. In New York, you may want to have a furnace as a backup for your heat pump on very cold nights. There are three common types of heat pumps.
Geothermal Heat Pumps
Though expensive, geothermal heat pumps (GHPs) are great for cold weather climates. GHPs rely on the constant temperature of the earth (instead of the outside air), allowing the system to operate very efficiently on even the coldest of nights. Compared to an air-source heat pump, GHPs can operate at 300% to 600% efficiency.
No matter what the temperature is in New York, from scorching heat in the summer to sub-zero cold in the winter—just a few feet below the earth’s surface the ground remains at a relatively constant temperature. In the winter, the ground temperature is warmer than the air above it, and in the summer, the ground air is cooler. Your GHP takes advantage of this by exchanging heat with the earth through a ground heat exchanger. Geothermal and water-source heat pumps are able to heat, cool, and, when properly equipped, supply the house with hot water. Many homeowners prefer GHPs to air-source heat pumps as they are quieter, last longer, need little maintenance, and do not depend on the temperature of the outside air.
You can typically expect to recoup the cost of the GHP in your energy bills over a period of 5-10 years. Additionally, the internal components of your GHP system should last up to 25 years, while the ground loop can last up to 50 years.
Dual-source Heat Pump
If a GHP is a cost prohibitive, you may want to look into a dual-source heat pump. A dual-source heat pump combines an air-source heat pump with a GHP to help you get the best of both worlds in terms of initial installation cost and long term energy savings.
Ductless Mini-split Systems
Ductless heat pump systems work much like the traditional furnace and air conditioning combo, but require no ductwork. If you have an additional room that would be difficult to run a duct to, this system is the perfect fix.
Air Conditioner Installation in New York
A high functioning and efficient new air conditioner unit is essential for steamy New York summers. Your air conditioner works similarly to your refrigerator in that a refrigerant runs through a closed system of metal coils. As warm interior air passes over these coils, the liquid refrigerant absorbs the heat cooling the air, which is then blown back into the house through ducts. Make sure you buy the right size air conditioning unit for your home as air conditioners that are too big use more electricity and leave the air in your house with excess humidity. Air conditioners that are too small do not cool your home to a comfortable temperature. Your HVAC professional can help you determine the right size for your home based on the square footage of your home and the average climate of your region.
Furnace Replacement for New Yorkers
Many New Yorkers heat their homes with a furnace. A furnace pulls cold air from the house and passes it around a heated metal box, the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger transfers heat from the metal to the air and a blower fan pushes the heated air through ducts that distribute it throughout the house. Furnaces can be single-stage, two-stage, or modulating.
- A single-stage furnace can only be on or off. The result is greater peaks and valleys in temperature and more inefficiency.
- A two-stage furnace has two settings, high and low. These models are preferred to a single stage furnace because they have a low-burning setting that keeps the heat from dropping too far below your desired point. They are also more efficient because they keep the air temperature from varying as much as it would with a single-stage furnace.
- A modulating furnace can adjust the flame to any point between off and high. It constantly adjusts its flame to try to keep the air temperature constant. In theory, this results in greater comfort and better efficiency. That said, modulating furnaces are relatively new and unproven.
Boiler Installation for New York Homeowners
A boiler is water containing vessel which converts heat from a fuel source (oil, gas, coal) into steam that is piped to a point where it can be used to provide either hot water or steam for heating. Steam is distributed through pipes to steam radiators, and hot water can be distributed through baseboard radiators or radiant floor systems, or can heat air via a coil. Steam boilers operate at a higher temperature than hot water boilers, and are inherently less efficient, but high-efficiency versions of all types of furnaces and boilers are currently available. Energy Star certified boilers have AFUE ratings of 87% or greater for oil boilers and 90% or greater for gas boilers. You can improve the efficiency of your boiler by looking for the following features:
- electronic ignition, which eliminates the need to have the pilot light burning all the time;
- new combustion technologies that extract more heat from the same amount of fuel;
- sealed combustion, which uses outside air to fuel the burner, reducing drafts and improving safety.
Save Energy and Money on HVAC in New York
Heating and cooling your home accounts for 48% of your annual energy bills, and that price is rising. An energy-efficient HVAC system can help significantly decrease and stabilize your monthly energy bills. There are several rating systems that can help you select the most efficient HVAC system for your home.
- The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating measures the efficiency of central air conditioners or heat pump usage over a theoretical cooling season. It’s a simple ratio of the amount of cooling provided by the air conditioner with the amount of energy the central system consumes. So if you see a system rated at 16 SEER, that actually means it produces 16 BTUs per watt-hour. But remember, a SEER number is theoretical. Your usage patterns — as well as proper equipment sizing and installation — will determine actual efficiency.
- The Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) measures a heat pump’s energy efficiency over one heating season combined with its SEER value over one cooling season. The HSPF formula is slightly more complicated. But the HSPF rating uses BTU to calculate useful heating output (including electric heat) divided by the total electricity the heat pump consumed (in watt/hr) during the heating season.
- The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) measures average efficiency for furnaces, boilers, and water heaters. This is a measure for a theoretical heating season, not including electricity.
For SEER, HSPF and AFUE, higher numbers indicate higher energy efficiency. These numbers are then used in two energy rating programs:
- EnergyGuide label: Manufacturers of heating and cooling equipment are required to display the EnergyGuide label. This label estimates how much energy the equipment uses, compares energy use of similar products, and gives approximate annual operating costs. Your exact costs will depend on local utility rates and the type and source of your energy.
- ENERGY STAR® certification: ENERGY STAR is a voluntary energy awareness program developed by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency. High-efficiency systems are labeled ENERGY STAR to identify products that are at least 15% more efficient than standard products.
What Size HVAC Unit is Right for My New York Home?
In most homes, the HVAC system is too big. Besides wasting energy, improper size can create uneven temperatures, poor humidity control, and maintenance problems over time. Your HVAC professional can help you choose a system that is right for you based on the size of your home and your local climate. Properly sized ENERGY STAR qualified equipment can easily cut your annual energy bill by hundreds of dollars. Programmable thermostats can save you even more with improved energy savings, home comfort, and peace of mind that your equipment is operating at peak efficiency.