Housing & Homes HVAC

Energy Star A/C, Furnace, & Heat Pump

The article is about Energy Star rated Heating & Cooling merchandise.  Al’s Plumbing, Heating & A/C, in Plano, Texas offers full service plumbing maintenance, repairs and replacements for each plumbing element in your house.  Al’s sells and installs Rheem Skilled Collection fuel & electrical water heaters, and tankless water heaters.  Al’s Plumbing, Heating & A/C is near your property in Plano, Allen, and Frisco.  We service all houses in southern Collin and Denton Counties with no further journey charge.

Al’s also supplies maintenance & repairs for all brands of Central A/C, Fuel & Electrical Furnace, and Heat Pumps.  Additionally, we sell and install new HVAC Techniques from American Normal (similar company as Trane), Ameristar (similar company as American Commonplace) and Coleman HVAC (similar firm as York HVAC).

Name Al’s at present to discuss any considerations or problems you’ve gotten together with your HVAC System or Plumbing.  We’ll organize an appointment at your comfort and supply 24/7 Emergency Service.

central air conditioner outside unit

Picture Source: Dreamstime

Most individuals are conscious of the Energy Star Certification on products.  To earn the ENERGY STAR, the product should meet the power efficiency standards set by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or the US Department of Energy (DOE).    Since Energy Star products use much less power, they create working costs financial savings and assist shield the surroundings by decreasing dangerous emissions from power crops, or from the product itself (resembling a fuel furnace).

While the Energy Star emblem assures the product meets their tips, the product may be removed from Excessive-Effectivity.  Central A/C, earns the Energy Star certification if it’s +8% extra environment friendly than the minimum effectivity.

  • SEER-14 is the minimum SEER in Texas.  SEER = Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio — a measure of efficiency for A/C.
  • SEER-15 can earn the Energy Star certification.
  • SEER-26 Probably the most efficient Central A/C in 2019.

Further Purchase Worth In contrast To Complete Savings Over The System’s Lifespan

There’s a giant distinction within the least environment friendly and most effective A/C that earn the Energy Star score.  New A/C installed in TX have to be a minimum of SEER-14. The Energy Star score for central A/C is on any a/c that’s SEER-15 or greater.    The qualify for the Energy Star score, the SEER have to be a minimum of +Eight% greater than the usual SEER.

As in contrast, in 2019 probably the most efficient Central A/C obtainable is SEER-26. Probably the most environment friendly central A/C bought by us is SEER-22.  It is the American Commonplace (similar firm as Trane) AccuComfort™ Variable Velocity Platinum 20 Air Conditioner.

A Greater SEER A/C Can End Up Costing Extra Cash.

To find out which SEER A/C presents one of the best value over the lifetime of the system, compute Annual Saving X 15 years.  Then examine that $ amount to the additional buy worth of the more efficient unit.   Use a SEER Financial savings calculator to determine the numbers (link offered under).  You enter the minimal SEER in the “Existing A/C” part + the new A/C’s SEER + the dimensions of the A/C + per kWH price electrical energy in DFW.  In case you are not sure what you pay, verify your payments, or use 10.5 cents / kWh.

Example:  Three-Ton / 36,000 BTU A/C:      Word: A Three-ton A/C cools a 2,000 square foot residence in DFW.      10.5 cents per kWh for electricity in DFW.

Annual Working Value:   Savings / Yr             15-Yr Lifespan Financial savings

  • SEER-14 = $520.
  • SEER-15 = $485.          Financial savings = $35 / yr = $525.  If the worth distinction exceeds $525, the usual SEER A/C is the higher value.
  • SEER-18 = $404.         Savings = $116 x 15  =  $1,740.  If the worth distinction exceeds $1,740
  • SEER-22 = $331.         Savings = $189 x 15  = $2,835.  If the worth difference exceeds $2,835
  • SEER-26 = $240.        Savings = $280 x 15 = $4,200.  If the worth difference exceeds $4,200
  • Word: Extremely High-Effectivity HVAC sometimes requires new, bigger ductwork be installed, as a result of greater air motion capacity.  Installing new ductwork increases the whole buy worth notably.

Click on Here For A SEER Savings Calculator: SEER Savings Calculator

The computation above exhibits lifetime savings for a SEER-14 A/C, as in comparison with different SEERS.  Your precise financial savings are based mostly on the SEER of your present A/C. We now have offered SEER’s based mostly on the age of the A/C slightly below.   Many ID tags provides you with the SEER, and almost all will provide the manufacture date of the A/C.

  • A brand new Commonplace Central A/C put in in TX have to be rated at SEER-14  or greater (Seasonal Energy Effectivity Score)
  • Excessive Efficiency Central A/C can have up to SEER-26.  The very best SEER central A/C is almost twice as power environment friendly because the minimum SEER A/C.
  • SEER-14 is at the least double the SEER of an A/C installed before 1985 (see details slightly below).
  • ENERGY STAR Certified Central A/Central have to be a minimum of +8% extra environment friendly than SEER 14 (SEER 15 or greater).
  • SEER-6 or decrease   —  Central A/C constructed earlier than 1980
  • SEER-7 or decrease   — 1980-1985
  • SEER-Eight or lower   — 1986-1991
  • SEER-10-12          — 1992-2005
  • SEER-13 or larger – 2006-2014
  • Starting in 2015 new Central A/C installed within the southeastern U.S. have to be no less than SEER-14.

The Outdoors Unit Has An I.D. Tag.  The ID tag might be on or near the rear of the unit.  It sometimes tells you the; brand, mannequin, date of manufacturer, BTU’s, refrigerant used and sometimes other details similar to SEER.

Click on Right here To See A Central A/C Identification Tag:  Central A/C Identification Tag/

One other Second Main Issue If Contemplating Restore Versus Changing An Older A/C

Refrigerant      International Warming Potential    Ozone Depletion Potential

  • R-22                  1810                                             .055
  • R-410A             2088                                            zero
  • R-32                    675                                             zero
  • If the ID Tag exhibits  Refrigerant “R-22” refrigerant, also called “Freon”.   Freon is not made in the U.S. (because it damages the Ozone Layer).  Remaining supplies of Freon are fairly expensive, and recharging an older Central A/C might value greater than the unit is value (based mostly on its age).
  • After 2020, Freon won’t longer be allowed for use in the U.S.  This implies older A/C will not be capable of be recharged with Freon. **  After 2020, you possibly can nonetheless use your Freon A/C until it wants recharged.  At that time it should get replaced.

** NOTE: There is a alternative refrigerant for Freon A/C’s.  RS-44b, also referred to as R453a.  It can be used to exchange the prevailing R-22 / Freon within the system.  This can be a alternative refrigerant.  The EPA doesn’t permit it to be combined with present Freon (like when a partial recharge is required).  To use RS-44b, all present Freon have to be removed from the system, and a full recharge of RS-44b be performed.

The fee to take away Freon and substitute it with RS-44b might present a decrease value answer to replacing and newer A/C.   R22/Freon Central A/C models have been bought via 2014 (though most used R-134a).  Some A/C should be new enough to justify the conversion from R-22/Freon to RS-44.  In DFW, the expected lifespan of an A/C is 15 years.  If your A/C is near, or older than 15 years, it’s possible not clever to pay the cost of an entire refrigerant alternative.

** SOURCE:  http://www.startribune.com/does-your-air-conditioner-use-r-22-refrigerant-here-s-why-you-should-care/428178123/

RS-44b is an HFC refrigerant.  HFC = HydroFloroCarbon.   At the moment’s most generally used R-134a Refrigerant can also be HydroFloroCarbon.  HFC refrigerants provide a greener answer to R-22, which is a CloroFlorCarbon refrigerant — which damages the Ozone layer.   HFC does not injury the Ozone layer, but has notable International Warming Potential (GWP).  The most recent refrigerant R-32 has just one/Three the GWP of R-134a.

  • Most A/C Manufactured Since 2010 Uses “R-134” refrigerant, also called “Norflurane”.  This is the most typical refrigerant used at this time in central A/C.    Whereas R-134 does not deplete the Ozone Layer, it has been discovered to contribute notably to International Warming.  Because of this, a 3rd Era Refrigerant is now obtainable.
  • The most recent A/C refrigerant is “R-32“, also known as “Difluoromethane”.  It has about 1/3 the International Warming potential of R-134, and (like 134) is has no Ozone Depleting Potential.
  • Daikin A/C is the primary to use R-32 refrigerant.  At present they don’t supply conventional central a/c with R-32.   R-32 is being used of their “ductless” Heat Pump residential techniques.  Additionally they produce the “through the wall” R-32 techniques, like these commonly seen in motels.
  • The rationale that R-32 shouldn’t be yet being used in conventional Central A/C is as a result of R-32’s greater operating temperature causes degradation of the oil contained in the compressor, and may injury elements inside the compressor.  Because of this, redesign consideration is required to make sure R-32’s working temperature is restricted to a suitable degree.   Sooner or later sooner or later, R-32 conventional Central A/C will grow to be out there.

Supply: https://www.airconditioning-systems.com/R32.html

photo of properly working gas burners in a gas furnace

Picture Source: ShutterStock

A Commonplace-Effectivity Fuel Pressured-Air Furnace In Texas is 80%.  An Energy Star Furnace Is 90% Environment friendly Or Greater.

The Most Environment friendly Fuel Furnace Is Rated At 98.7%.  Just one.3% Of The Heat Generated Exists The Residence With Its Exhaust.

old gas furnace

Picture Source: Can Stock Photograph

Furnace Shown Above Is 70% Efficient Or Less.  30% Or More Of The Heat Generated Goes Up The Flue.

This Can Be Decided By The 6″ (or larger) Metallic Flue Pipe At The Entrance Of The Furnace.

  • The oldest fuel furnaces (some are still in service within the northern U.S.) are about 50% efficient.  They’re often known as “gravity feed” or “octopus” furnace.  They don’t have a blower.

Click Here To See A Gravity Feed / Octopus Furnace:  Photograph Of Gravity Feed / Octopus Furnace

  • A Fuel Furnace constructed within the 1970’s has an efficiency of 60–70%.  AFUE = Annual Gasoline Utilization Effectivity — a measure of effectivity in fuel furnaces.
  • Older fuel furnaces have 1 metallic vent pipe diameter of 6″ or bigger.  The pipe goes upward by means of the roof.
  • Since 1987, a Commonplace Efficiency fuel furnace is 80%.  20% of the warmth generated is vented outdoors with the exhaust.
  • These furnaces have 1 metallic vent pipe diameter of three″– 5″ (depends upon measurement of furnace).  The pipe goes upward via the roof.
  • These furnaces have vent holes within the entrance cover (to drawn air in for fuel combustion) and you may see the burners’ flames.
  • Normal furnaces (inside the house’s dwelling area) take away heated air from inside the house to be used for fuel combustion.  This does not apply to attic furnaces.
  • This causes further decreases the whole power efficiency of the home.

Click on Here To See An 80% Efficient Fuel Furnace: 80% Efficient Fuel Furnace

high efficiency gas furnace with two white pipes visible

Image Supply: DreamsTime

SHOWN: Excessive-Effectivity Fuel Furnace (90% Efficient Or Extra)

  • Energy Star Furnaces having an efficiency score of 90% or greater.   They vent no more than 10% of the warmth generated outdoors with the exhaust.
  • Energy Star Furnaces use outside air for combustion of the fuel. They don’t take away heated air from the home for use for fuel combustion.
  • These furnaces have two plastic vent pipes.  One brings outside air in (for combustion).  The opposite pipe vents exhaust to outdoor.
  • These furnaces Do Not have vent holes in the entrance cowl.  You’ll be able to solely the burners’ flames by means of a small spherical opening (that has a plastic cowl).

Relying on the age of your own home, the additional cash spent on a High-E furnace in DFW could be higher spent on growing attic insulation.  In case your attic has less than    R-38 insulation, utilizing the High-E furnace price-difference might prevent extra money in the long term.  It depends upon the worth difference between High-E and 80% Furnace.

Attic insulation insulation will save on both Heating & Cooling. And, since DFW  is in a “Cooling” Climate, insulation will save probably the most cash in the course of the heat of summer time, as in comparison with a Excessive-E furnace’s savings throughout rare cold spells in DFW winter.   Additionally, attic insulation reduces how a lot the A/C should run, extending its lifespan.

In case you have enough attic insulation, the furnace price-difference is perhaps better spent on a better efficiency Central A/C — for a similar reasons listed simply above.

Other Energy-Saving Issues As an alternative Of Excessive-E Furance:

  • Have an organization do an Energy Audit, after which seal the place the house is leaking air.
  • Set up a Radiant Heat-Barrier in your attic.  This barrier blocks the solar’s radiant warmth from shifting deeply into the attic.  Once heat reaches the attic flooring (which can also be the ceilings of the rooms under) the amount of heat transfer from attic to dwelling area will increase dramatically.  In DFW summer time, attics can reach 170 degrees.
  • If your property has ductwork in the attic (most DFW houses do) — a Radiant-Heat Barrier reduces the quantity of heat ductwork should cope with too.

Click Here To See A Radiant-Heat Barrier Put in In An Attic: Radiant-Heat Barrier Put in In Attic

Click on Here To See A Thermal-Picture Of An Attic Displaying Its Temp At 170 Degrees: Thermal-Picture Of Attic

  • Add solar-film to west dealing with windows.
  • Add awnings above west dealing with windows.
  • Plant annual timber (they drop their leaves in winter) to block west or south solar.

photo of heat pump

(For Those With Electrical Heat)

There isn’t a such factor as a high-efficiency electrical furnace.  By definition, an electrical furnace is 100% environment friendly because no heat leaves the house with furnace exhaust (like with a fuel furnace).

To get more energy-efficient (and less expensive) Electric Heat, the one choice is to install a Heat Pump as an alternative of Central A/C.  A Heat Pump is a Central A/C when cooling PLUS it runs in reverse for heating.  When in reverse / heating mode, the warmth pump removes heat from outside air and transfers that heat into the house.  The power of a Heat Pump to warmth the home by itself depends on the outside air temperature.  The colder it’s outdoor, the less heat there’s in the outside air for the Heat Pump to extract.   The much less warmth to extract, the longer the Heat Pump will run.

When it will get chilly sufficient that the Heat Pump can’t sustain (which is not all of the frequent in DFW) the supplemental electric warmth (contained in the furnace) will even operate.  The furnace will add further heat as needed.  Right now’s Heat Pumps are capable of heating the home right down to round freezing (32 levels).  Under that outside temp, supplemental warmth could also be needed, and is provided by the furnace.  During these occasions, each the Heat Pump & Supplemental Heat will run.  The electrical / supplemental warmth runs only when the Heat Pump can’t sustain (or if it stops working).

Heat Pumps warmth the home utilizing much less electricity than electric warmth.   Relying on the outside temperature, a Heat Pump can function for as little as 50% the price of an electric furnace.  Because a Heat Pump operates during many outside temperatures, a very good guide is that it’ll value 30%–40% less (over your complete heating season) to warmth with a Heat Pump than with an electrical furnace.

nest thermostat in heating mode

Picture Source: ShutterStock

Shown: Nest Sensible Thermostat

Sensible Thermostats (corresponding to Nest thermostat) additionally permit the home proprietor to decide on how fast they want the HVAC System to warmth.  The Nest thermostat permits the owner to choose:nest thermostat heat pump balance display

  • Max Comfort / Quickest (adding electric heat)
  • Max Financial savings / Regular (utilizing only the Heat Pump)
  • “Balanced”.  In the 3rd setting, Nest will determine when, and how much, supplemental electrical warmth is important based mostly on outside temps.
  • Notice:  Subsequent goes online to verify the outside temp & climate circumstances, and shows them on the thermostat.

Because Heat Pumps Each Heat & Cool, They Have 2 Effectivity Scores”

  • SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) — This tells the cooling efficiency.  In DFW a Heat Pump’s SEER have to be 14 or larger.
  • HSPF (Heating Season Efficiency Issue) — This tells the heating efficiency.
  • Each SEER & HSPF rise with extra efficient Heat Pumps.

The extra efficient a Heat Pump is, the upper both SEER & HSPF can be as a result of, while in heating mode, a Heat Pump is just a central a/c operating in reverse

As Of 2019, The Most Environment friendly Heat Pump Is:

  • American Commonplace’s most effective is the AccuComfort Platinum-20 Heat Pump:  20.0 SEER + and 10.0 HSPF.
  • As compared, a Heat Pump with SEER-14 could have a few Eight.2 HSPF.

Heat Pumps are a bit costlier than Central A/C, because they will both heat & cool.  The worth distinction can be repaid a number of occasions over with lower heating bills.  NO new electrical wiring is needed to transform from Central A/C to Heat Pump.  The Heat Pump makes use of the identical power supply as the prevailing A/C.

With a Heat Pump, the air temperature coming from the vents is lower than an electrical furnace.  A Heat Pump will discharge air temps (on the vents) of 85-95 degrees.  An electric furnace makes temps of 130-140 degrees.  Whereas the air at the vents will really feel cooler with a Heat Pump, the output temperature is ample to heat the house.

The colder it is outdoor, the longer the Heat Pump should run (because there’s less warmth for it to extract from outdoors air).  It’s normal for the Heat Pump to run longer, and generate a cooler air on the vents, because it gets colder outside.    Relying on the model & mannequin, some Heat Pumps might turn off when it’s a sure outside temperature.  When this happens, all heating is offered by the electrical furnace until outside temps rise again.

(Elements 2-4 Are Accessed With A Hyperlink Inside Every Section)


Al’s Plumbing, Heating & A/C, in Plano, Texas offers full service plumbing upkeep, repairs and replacements for every plumbing element in your home. Al’s sells and installs Rheem Skilled Collection fuel & electrical water heaters, and tankless water heaters.  Al’s Plumbing, Heating & A/C is near your own home in Richardson, Garland, and northeast Dallas, Texas.  We service all houses in southern Collin and Denton Counties with no further journey cost.

Al’s also supplies upkeep & repairs for all brands of Central A/C, Fuel & Electric Furnace, and Heat Pumps.  Additionally, we sell and set up new HVAC Techniques from American Normal (similar company as Trane), Ameristar (similar company as American Commonplace) and Coleman HVAC (similar company as York HVAC).

Call Al’s at the moment to discuss any considerations or problems you might have together with your HVAC System or Plumbing.  We’ll organize an appointment at your comfort and supply 24/7 Emergency Service.