If you’re are like most here at Bryant we are ready for winter to be over and ready for some nicer weather. What that means for your home comfort is a transition from heating to eventually cooling season. Not only might your cooling system be called on soon, for some homes that means a replacement is getting closer on the horizon. If you are in the market for a new cooling system you may have heard of variable speed, but still not quite understand what it means or the benefits variability brings to your home comfort.
What Is Variable Speed?
Variable speed in a heating and cooling system allows components to operate at multiple levels, having better control over energy usage and climate control. Both your heating and air conditioning units can utilize variable speed components. Furnaces may have a multiple speed or fully variable speed blower fan. They also have variable or “staging” gas valves and heat packages. This means your gas to electrical consumption can be controlled by your furnace as well. This allows your system to move the air at difference speeds both in heating and cooling settings. Air conditioners and heat pumps may have a multiple speed or fully variable speed compressor.
How Does Variable Speed Improve Comfort?
Let’s start talking about your home comfort in regard to the furnace variable components. Some furnaces have single speed fans and others have variable speed blower fans. Variable speed allows your furnace to move the air throughout your home more evenly. Starting on a low speed the furnace keeps the air moving at a slower, quiet speed. As your thermostat takes a gauge on how your heating or cooling is doing on satisfying the temperature setting it will adjust by ramping up as needed.
Gas furnaces that utilize variable or “Staging” gas valves control how much gas is used during the heating process. When the temperature outside are not requiring your furnace to work real hard the furnace also reduces the amount of gas it uses, saving you every second it’s in use. Electric furnaces or fan coils may have staging heat packages or elements. Meaning the system will have different levels of heat that can be turned on by the furnace depending on how much the system needs to work to reach your thermostat setting.
When talking about your air conditioner or heat pump, the variable component is the compressor. With a variable speed compressor your cooling system can adjust the your home’s need. What we’re talking about here is that the compressor will only work as hard as it needs to. During those times when outdoor temps are mild the compressor will operate a low speeds allowing for cooling calls to run longer without using additional energy. Lengthening out the time that the air conditioner or heat pump runs allows it to better dehumidify your home. During cooling season keeping the humidity at bay is a must for your comfort. When outdoor temps raise and the air conditioner’s compressor will ramp up as needed to keep you cool under the collar.
Comfort is not just the temperature in your home, but it also includes noise. Variable speed fans and compressors allow your home’s heating and cooling system to operate at lower audible levels so you can bear to keep your home cool in the summer and carry on a conversation outdoors even if your air conditioner sits right close to your patio.
How Can Variable Speed Increase Efficiency?
Above we discussed your comfort, but when selecting your next furnace and AC we’re sure efficiency is something you are also considering. Variable speed components aren’t available just for comfort reasons, they have equal affect on the efficiency of your equipment.
Let’s look at your furnace for instance. If you are a person that likes to run the fan nonstop, moving air even when there is not a call for heating or cooling, a variable speed fan will allow this to be done while using less energy. If staging gas values or heat packages simply put will save you money when the furnace, gas or electric, is heating your home. Less energy or fuel will be used when possible. Say it’s a sunny 55 outside, even with that sun warming your home, your furnace will probably need to kick on from time to time. When it does it staging gas valve will restrict the amount of gas used meaning the furnace is saving you money. Pretty nice right?
As for your cooling system. The lower the speed your compressor can operate, the less energy it’s consuming to keep you comfortable.
Bryant Heating and Cooling Systems
If you are looking at your heating and cooling bills and wondering how to reduce what you are regularly paying in utilities each month Bryant Heating and Cooling Systems offer multiple options for upgrade. today’s base model equipment is likely more efficient than what your current system is. When you consider a furnace and air conditioner or heat pump with variable speed components you can really start saving. Would you like to look at some options for your home? Give us a call, 402-470-8162, or complete our online contact form. We offer FREE, no obligation estimates.