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Is Energy Conservation More Important Than Indoor Air Quality?

By Your Advisor 11/11/16 1:00 PM Time to read:

If you are house hunting, what are some of the first concerns that come to mind? You most likely have a checklist in your head: desired location or neighborhood, square footage, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms are probably up there. Maybe that list also includes details like curb appeal or a state of the art kitchen. Besides the checklist, however, your primary concern is most likely whether or not this dream home is within your budget. But when setting your budget, are you accounting for hidden factors, like an outdated electrical or HVAC system?

Hidden home costs

While many newly-built homes are designed for energy conservation, older homes on the market may not be quite up to par. If you choose not to upgrade your system, you run the risk of having high utility bills over the long term. Maybe that is why homeowners rate the energy efficiency of products in their home as one of their top requirements according to the American Institute of Architects.

Interestingly enough, indoor air quality ranked the lowest priority on the same report. Of surveyed respondents, 63% prioritize energy conservation, while only 35% care about indoor air quality. What many homeowners don’t realize is that investing in an efficient HVAC system can achieve both goals.

Get the Best of Both Worlds

Did you know that central air conditioning and heating can use fifteen times the energy of a refrigerator? Even so, no one should have to make the decision between maintaining their family’s health and comfort and paying the energy bill! If the existing HVAC system in a home is at least 10 years old, chances are that the equipment is not up to current energy efficiency standards. That means even if it is working well, it could be using much more energy than an upgraded model. Over the last few years there have been huge strides in innovative HVAC technology. Variable speed blowers, wifi thermostats and precise zoning capabilities are just a few of the ways that new homeowners can conserve energy with new cutting edge equipment.

Not every new HVAC system needs to have its duct system replaced, but it is very important to have it inspected to make sure it is doing its job efficiently and safely.

The duct system is a collection of “tubing” that distributes heated or cooled air throughout your home. This ductwork can lose nearly 40% of the heating or cooling energy output from your equipment due to insufficient insulation or from leakage through the seams of the ducts themselves.

Improperly designed or installed ductwork can also have a profound effect on the health of the people within your home. If the sections are poorly connected, your ductwork could be prone to accidental air leaks and contamination. Dust, mold, and mildew could be traveling through your system blasting pathogens throughout your home. Properly sealed ductwork can ensure that your HVAC system runs at its most efficient and maintains the integrity of your home’s indoor air quality.

Once you are confident that your duct work is healthy, determining the proper level of filtration and purification is the final piece of the puzzle. The benefits of air filtration and UV purification can affect your HVAC system’s health as well as your family’s. The better the filtration/purification, the cleaner your system’s components as well as the indoor air that your family breathes.

Do you have any concerns about your HVAC system? Give Burgeson's a call and one of our Comfort Advisors will be happy to contact you.