1. What are efficiency rating numbers?

The federal government requires that all heating and cooling equipment as well as most other home appliances have an energy rating. This rating shows us the level of energy efficiency. The higher ratings means that this device will consume less energy, save you more money and is better for the environment which is achieved by lower energy consumption.

2. What is AFUE?

AFUE is a measurement which shows percentage of fuel efficiency of gas and oil furnaces and boilers. The AFUE shows how much of the heating capacity of the fuel will be turned into heat and delivered to the home. AFUE stands for “annual fuel utilization efficiency” and shows the percent of heat delivered from the specific thermal amount of fuel over a year. If you put 100,000 British Thermal Units (BTUs) of fuel in your furnace and it delivers 88,000 BTUs of fuel to the home, its AFUE efficiency is 88%. The government requires that all furnaces and boilers must include AFUE and defines its minimum levels for various furnace and boiler types.

3. What is SEER?

SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating and is primarily used for air conditioners with compressors. Minimum SEER rating for air conditioners are currently 13.0 SEER, and the latest designs have a SEER rating of 21.0

4. What is the difference between a package unit and a split system in cooling?

heating and cooling services on Long Island NYA split system is an air conditioner which consists of at least two units, out of which one is outdoor. The outdoor unit contains condenser components and release the home heat to outdoor air, while recuperating cold from it. Indoor unit, which can be one or more delivers the cold to the indoors. Split systems are more common in residential houses. Business premises and condominium apartments use package units more often. A package unit is an air conditioner where all needed components are zipped inside a single box and are usually placed at windows or built-in the walls.

5. Can I cover the outdoor unit in winter?

No, there are no benefits from it. Modern air conditioners are built to sustain long periods of being non-operational. It can also be risky if someone in your home turns the device on without knowing it’s covered, which can inflict damage. Note that now you can buy an inverter air conditioner which can be used for both heating and cooling, even in the extreme weather conditions. Inverter units must not be covered.

6. If an outdoor unit needs replacement, do I replace the indoor unit too?

Following the new EPA requirements regarding the cooling gas by which R-22 refrigerant will be phased out by 2020 you would best be replacing both the indoor and the outdoor unit. Even if it should look costly, you need to know that you will get a highly energy efficient new air conditioner which would pay for itself through lower electricity bills.

7. Can I grow plants around the outdoor unit?

Yes, but you shouldn’t quite cover the unit. You may keep the distance of 18 in between the unit and the closest plants. Otherwise the unit will lack room for air circulation which may cause unit overheat thus reducing its service intervals and increase risks of its failure.

8. Should I use “Auto” on the thermostat?

Definitely. New thermostats are programmed for “smart” operation which take many factors into account to deliver you just the enough chill you exactly need, saving you energy and extending the furnace’s, boiler’s or air conditioner’s life.
Benefits of putting steady on is that the air is filtered continuously and the temperature is delivered more evenly to all rooms that are subject to heating or cooling.

9. How do I find out the best size heating/cooling unit for my house?

Whenever you need to replace your existing heating and cooling equipment you need to hire a certified technician to make an audit of your home. This qualified person will assess all relevant factor, including the size and architecture of your home, its thermal insulation quality, doors, windows and other things that play a role in heating efficiency. If you get a unit too powerful you will waste money and lose comfort, and if you install weak equipment it would need to operate for more hours throughout the day which would shorten its life greatly and increase risk of frequent failures.

10. What is HSPF?

HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor) is a term used in the heating and cooling industry. Some air conditioners have a heat pump function. Their heating capabilities are rated by HSPF ratio, which is simply the percent of BTUS of heat delivered for a specific amount of kilowatt-hours of electricity they consumed to do so. The greater the HSPF rating, the better this air conditioner is.