Before Upgrading a Home Heating System, Find an HVAC Tech and Get an Energy Audit
The two most important bases to cover before upgrading a heating system, include finding a solid HVAC contractor and getting an energy audit. Your contractor and a team of technicians are essential for selecting the right equipment and installation for your home and budget. An energy audit will tell you where you can easily improve your home’s energy efficiency.
HVAC Contractor Selection
Your contractor should have a state license, insurance and bonding. Working with HVAC equipment entails handling combustible fuel lines and high voltage electrical lines and equipment. If the contractor doesn’t have one or all of these tools, you’re at risk for losing the warranty on the new equipment or being financially responsible for problems associated with the installation.
A sign of high competence in an HVAC contractor is a NATE (North American Technician Excellence) certification. NATE is a non-profit that only certifies the most knowledgeable and capable HVAC contractors and technicians in the industry. When you select a contractor with NATE credentials, you can expect the best service and performance from the company and their technicians.
An energy audit will reveal air leaks in your home, as well as inadequate insulation, two important things to address before upgrading a heating system. Sealing the leaks and improving insulation will change the size of the system you need, possibly saving you money upfront on the installation and certainly saving energy dollars all year long.
Auditors use a blower door test that measures the amount of air leakage through your home’s envelope. Technicians also use infrared equipment that tests where you have thermal losses through the foundation, walls and attic. By sealing leaks and increasing insulation, the amount of heat your home requires will drop. Your HVAC contractor will then run a load calculation to find the best size heating system for your home — a crucial step prior to equipment selection.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues – especially HVAC and plumbing issues – so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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