What is the Value of Owning a Variable Speed AC System?

Like most other products for your home, the technology for air conditioning systems has vastly improved over the last 10 years. The efficiency of systems has improved, thermostats have become smarter, and even the refrigerant has been updated to be more environmentally friendly. One change having the biggest impact on overall performance is the shift from single-stage cooling (On or Off) to multi-stage cooling (2-stage to true variable speed). The benefits of having multiple cooling stages are higher efficiencies, better comfort, indoor air quality, and quieter operation.

What is a Variable Speed AC System?

Multi-stage equipment can take advantage of lower cooling demands by operating at lower stages. The lower stages use less electricity which makes the system more efficient in the summer, and in the winter if you have a heat pump system. SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) and HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor) ratings are like your car’s MPG – the higher the number the greater the potential for savings. For example, Carrier’s Infinity Series heat pumps offer a range of efficiencies that reach as high as 20.5 SEER and 13 HSPF. To put this into perspective a basic single-stage heat pump starts at 14 SEER and 8 HSPF.

Why Should I Get a Variable Speed AC System Installed?

Multi-stage equipment is for better comfort and indoor air quality. Not only does this equipment control the temperature in the home, but it also can control humidity. As outdoor conditions and demands inside the home change, the equipment makes adjustments to maintain your comfort levels. This allows the system to operate longer and steadier throughout the day, and constantly remove moisture from the air. Also, since the system operates longer it is pulling more air through the filters thereby removing more dust and debris.

Most manufacturers only offer multi-stage systems in their higher-tier offerings. For example, Carrier’s 5-stage and variable speed systems are only offered in their Infinity platform. Higher-tier equipment comes with sound-dampening features like a compressor enclosure, and when you couple this with the quiet operation of the lower stages the result is a more peaceful home.

If you are in San Antonio and need a new Air Conditioning System but aren’t sure which one is best for your home, please give us a call at Air Authority, A Riteway Service Company at (210) 791-0778.


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