3 Things Contractors Should Know About Energy-Efficient HVAC
Helping guide your client toward the perfect HVAC unit takes a lot of knowledge on your part as a contractor. With the growing interest in eco-friendly living, it’s now almost a given that a customer will ask about energy efficiency when looking to purchase a new system for their home. That’s why it’s so important to be able to articulate exactly what each designation means and what benefits they will see. With these three points from Home Improvement Leads, you’ll improve your energy efficiency knowledge, which will make you appeal to more homeowners than ever before.
SEER, EER, and What They Mean for You
The output of modern HVAC units is measured by the seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) as well as the energy efficiency ratio (EER), with higher rankings meaning increased efficiency and lower costs for the homeowner. SEER ratings will show you how a particular machine will operate at an average temperature of 82 degrees. On the other hand, EER will give you a broader understanding of how it will perform under duress from extreme temperatures of 95 degrees or higher. Though both are important indicators to consider, SEER tends to be the more important gauge for long term savings.
These optimum units do come with a steep price tag. In general, a 21-SEER HVAC unit is going to cost 40 percent more than a 14-SEER, and a customer isn’t necessarily going to see the benefits of this upgrade back in their wallet. In many cases, simply repairing leaks that are found during an energy audit can help a client save as much money as a more efficient HVAC unit can. The Department of Energy has an energy calculator that can help you in advising your client as to which rated unit will best serve their family.
Benefits to Their Budget
Heating and cooling a home accounts for 48 percent of a homeowner’s energy bill each month. Though a patron will definitely lower their monthly outlay by adding extra insulation, sealing cracks, and switching to more energy efficient light bulbs, little will impact their bill more than upgrading to an Energy Star certified HVAC. These units use at least 10 percent less energy than a modern HVAC unit does—and even more if your client’s current unit is more than 10 years old. Plus, the federal government offers a $300 tax credit on all Energy Star HVACs, making them affordable on almost any budget.
Making your home as airtight as possible may be great for the environment, but it isn’t necessarily great for your health. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are found in your furniture’s upholstery to paint to cleaning supplies, and have been shown to linger in the air for years, resulting in higher cases of illness ranging from eye irritation and lethargy to respiratory issues and cancer. Similarly, moisture is more likely to be trapped within a thoroughly sealed house causing bacteria and mold growth. Due to this fact, most home’s air is 25 percent more polluted than the ambient air outside! The better a HVAC’s quality, the more it will be able to eliminate mold spores and pollens by reducing humidity levels, drawing in outdoor air, and properly filtering the home’s air. Be sure to advise your clients to change their air filters at least once every three months and have their air ducts cleaned every two to five years.
With the proper information, you can give your client’s everything they need to make the best choice for their home and their family.
About The Author: Courtni Wisenbaker-Scheel is a mother of two, and lover of all things Danish modern. She enjoys writing professionally with the goal of empowering homeowners with the expert guidance and educational tools they need to take on big home projects with confidence.