Air surrounds us. For millennia, human beings did not “control” their air – we lived in trees or in caves, and took it as it was.
Heating, of course, was the first change. No one can date the invention of fire. With it, however, humans adapted to environments – enabling our species to spread all over this planet, to cold climates. But heating was pretty much limited, until relatively recently, to open hearths.
As far as anyone can tell, the first real attempt to control the thermal environment – the AC part of “HVAC” – can be seen on Egyptian inscriptions (and in Hollywood movies) . . . a slave fanning the pharaoh!
What is HVAC?
Choosing a home heating and cooling system is one of the most important decisions a homeowner can make.
Choosing a good system will lead to complete indoor comfort year round, as well as contribute to family health and energy efficiency. Choosing the wrong system can lead to an uncomfortable home environment, which can have an adverse effect on the family’s happiness.
However, because the heating and cooling system is unseen, this important decision is often overlooked. We can help you understand the major types of heating and cooling systems in common use today, help you to identify a quality HVAC System contractor, and ensure that you and your family are provided the comfort you deserve.
Good heating and cooling, with the right type of system, is more important than the average homebuyer realizes. No matter how perfect the home, convenient the layout, or magnificent the view, all will be useless if you are not completely comfortable.
Good heating and cooling not only brings you proper and complete indoor comfort year round, but it also contributes to family health and reasonable housekeeping maintenance costs. Since a good heating and cooling system is quite thoroughly hidden, it is too frequently forgotten or not considered as carefully as it deserves.
The question is whether a heating and cooling system should do more than heat and cool. The answer is that it certainly should! Heat from the fireplace kept past generations from freezing, but it certainly didn’t create total comfort, which you should expect from a modern system. The concept of total comfort has many facets, which contribute to your family’s long-term enjoyment of its home.
Temperature Control (Zoning) – A number of different zoning options are available. In most cases, it is recommended that the blower run constantly.
- Multiple Systems – More than one heating/cooling system
- Zone-Damper Systems – Consists of multiple ducts and thermostats located throughout the house
- Programmable Thermostats
Humidification and Dehumidification – An HVAC System that provides proper humidification and dehumidification offers the following benefits:
- Healthier Environment – Reduces occurrences of sore throats, dry skin, nose bleeds and other health-related problems
- Helps Efficiency – System can be set lower because the body feels warmer
- Lessens Static Electricity
- Helps Preserve Furniture and Wood (i.e., doors, floors, millwork)
- Proper Humidification Control – Adjusts to outside temperature
Clean Air (Indoor Air Quality) – The HVAC System should include components that ensure clean, fresh air. Some of these options are:
- Heat Recovery Ventilation (HRV) and Energy Recovery Ventilation (ERV)
- Electronic Air Cleaners
- Media Air Cleaners
- Electro-Static Air Cleaners
- Ultra-Violet Treatment
- Periodic Duct Cleaning
Efficiency – The HVAC System should provide maximum energy efficiency. Some of the options for providing an energy-efficient system are:
- Energy Efficient Equipment
- Variable-Speed System
- Two-Speed System
- Programmable Thermostat
- Properly Designed and Installed Sheet Metal Ductwork System
- Proper Duct Sealing
- Multi-Stage System
Noise Control – If an HVAC System is properly designed and installed using good quality components, its operation will be extremely quiet. To ensure optimum noise control, the system may include:
- Vibration Isolation
- Insulated Compartments
- Acoustic Lining
- Proper Location of Equipment
- Variable Speed Equipment
User-Friendly – A user-friendly HVAC System will include:
- Easy-to-Operate Thermostats and Controls
- Clear Maintenance Instructions
- Long-Term Maintenance Agreement