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.
HVAC Buying Guide for Pittsburgh
If you are reading this HVAC buying guide, chances are you are considering the purchase of a new HVAC system for your Pittsburgh area home or business. Important considerations are necessary to ensure your HVAC investment is installed correctly, legally, and is the right size and type suitable for your property. This buying guide will cover the important considerations you should take along with a basic introduction to HVAC installation and what to expect when purchasing a new system.
Climate Considerations in Pittsburgh
Purchasing a new HVAC system requires investing in one matched to your area’s climate. Pittsburgh residents enjoy 160 days of sunshine per year. While most folks enjoy sunny days, the downside is the temperature can reach 84 degrees in mid July, putting a heavy load on your cooling system. During the winter months, residents face a chilling average of 24 degrees in mid January. These frigid temperatures can also put a strain on your heating system. Your HVAC contractor must take into account your climate along with Manual J and D calculations when sizing your new HVAC system. If your contractor fails to make new calculations and suggest simply replacing your old system with a new system of the same size, it might be best to find another, more professional HVAC contractor.
Selecting an HVAC Contractor in Pittsburgh
Selecting a licensed and certified contractor is vital for your HVAC installation. Anyone who represents himself as a professional HVAC technician will have the appropriate and current HVAC license, certification, and insurance including liability and worker’s compensation to back them up. Any person who fails to produce the proper credentials should be shown the door. Using an unlicensed contractor is criminal in some states so be sure to verify or be prepared to face the potential consequences. In addition, you may incur fines or an order to remove and reinstall the system using a licensed HVAC contractor. You can view the HVAC contractor requirements for Pittsburgh by visiting the Department of Permits, Licenses and Inspections online or by clicking here.
HVAC Permits in Pittsburgh
Residential HVAC permits are required for all HVAC system work for single and two-story family dwellings by the Pittsburgh Department of Permits, Licenses and Inspections. Residential HVAC applications are available online by clicking here. Their physical address is the Department of Permits, Licenses, and Inspections, 200 Ross Street, 3rd Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15219 or you can reach them by phone by dialing (412) 255-2175.
Benefits of New HVAC Installation in Pittsburgh
You can expect many benefits after installing a new HVAC system in Pittsburgh. While the initial cost of a new system may seem high and depends on the size system needed, over time, the benefits will outweigh the investment. These are just a few of the benefits you can expect:
- Lower monthly utility bills due increased energy efficiency
- Improved heating and cooling capabilities
- Solid return on investment as property value increases
- Potentially qualifying for government, city or state tax credits and/or incentives
- Outstanding marketing tool should you decide to sell your property in the future
Types of HVAC Systems Common in Pittsburgh
When it’s time to choose a new HVAC system, your contactor will recommend the best type for your property. Listed below you will find a list of some common HVAC systems used in Pittsburgh.
- Packaged system
- Ductless mini split heating and cooling systems
- Split systems
- Multi-split systems
- Air-source heat Pumps
- Geothermal or ground-source Heat Pumps
This buying guide will not get into the specifics of how each system type works, instead focus on the important questions to ask your contractor or sales representative. One of the most important topics to cover is which size unit will accommodate the square footage of your home. The size of the unit, along with its efficiency ratings, is critical to ensure you purchase a system suitable for your specific property needs. You do not want a system that is too small nor do you want a system that will not function effectively because it is too large. When it comes to HVAC systems, the size of the system is of the utmost importance.
If you are replacing an existing HVAC system, do not assume the size currently installed is what you need. The HVAC specialist should run a set of calculations based on several factors to determine the unit size. You can do this yourself with an online calculator like the one located at this website.
HVAC installation, as with most major home improvement projects, is an investment in not only your home, but also your comfort and lifestyle. By doing your homework beforehand, you will understand the basics of HVAC installation allowing you to make an informed decision. This makes you a smart consumer who will reap the many benefits and savings of a properly installed HVAC system.