The lifespan of an air conditioner is 15 to 20 years. So, it’s essential to choose the right system when building a new home. Modern heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems have come a long way in terms of energy efficiency. Optimized AC units use up to 50% less energy to produce the same amount of cooling power compared to air conditioners from the 1970s.
Residential HVAC Options
There are several different home HVAC options on the market today. A custom home with efficient systems and proper insulation will save homeowners money on heating and cooling costs.
Central Air Conditioner
Central AC circulates air through a system of supply and return ducts. Supply ducts bring cold air from the unit to the home. When the cool air becomes warmer, it rises and flows through return ducts back the AC unit.
Split-System Air Conditioner
A split air conditioner has both an outdoor unit and an indoor unit. The exterior unit houses the compressor and condenser coil. On the interior wall, a unit contains the cooling coil, air filter, and blower. Split-system AC units are much simpler than central air because they do not require ductwork. The short tubing minimizes the amount of energy loss.
Air-Source Heat Pump
An air-source heat pump cools the home by transferring heat from inside your home to the outside. The refrigerant absorbs the heat inside, and the pump releases the heat outside. With the flip of a switch, the process is reversed to warm your home in the winter. These systems use less energy than central air conditioning. However, air-source heat pumps are inefficient when the outside temperatures fall below zero degrees. Many heat pumps require a backup heating system.
Ground-Source Heat Pump
Geothermal heat pumps are highly efficient and use renewable energy technology. They take advantage of the consistent temperatures below the earth’s surface for heating and cooling homes as well as heating water. The ground warms the home in winter and cools it in summer. Using ground-source heat might lower your energy bill, but the upfront installation costs are high.
There are many factors to consider when selecting an HVAC system for your custom home build. An expert design-builder can provide insight based on the size and location of your custom home build.
- Climate – Central New Jersey has moderately cold winters and warm, humid summers. In areas with moderate temperatures, heat pumps might not be the best option as temperatures often fall below freezing in the winter.
- Price Tag – Homeowners need to understand the total costs to purchase and install a system that can adequately heat and cool your home.
- Efficiency – Check the Energy Star rating. Higher efficiency models with lower operating costs can save money in the long term.
- Longevity – Typically, central air units last longer than heat pumps because they get a break during the colder months while the furnace heats the home.
Far Hills Design Build is here to help with your custom home build or major renovation project. Give us a call 908-781-0777.