Unless your job requires it – or you just really don’t mind the
cold—we’re willing to bet you won’t be spending a lot of time outdoors over the
next few months.
And while the idea of holding up at home to wait out the winter seems appealing, it’s important to make sure you have a healthy indoor climate. In this blog post, we’ll discuss ways to improve your indoor air quality and how products like the Air Scrubber Plus can give you the gift of clean air in 2020.
If you’ve ever gone looking for a new HVAC system – or even
a window air
conditioner or space heater – you’ve probably encountered the initials BTU.
BTU stands for “British Thermal Unit,” and it’s a part of
the same system that includes things like pounds or inches, only instead of
measuring weight or length, the BTU measures energy.
A BTU is the amount of energy needed to raise the
temperature of a pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit at sea level. BTUs allow
you to track how much energy an appliance can process to make your space warmer
BTU per square foot and determining furnace sizes
To start with, the appropriate BTU per square foot
measurement for your home will depend on where you live. People living in, say,
Florida will need a lower number than someone living in Minnesota.
Here in the mid-Atlantic region, you’ll typically need 40-45
BTUs per square foot. To determine the proper furnace
size for your home, multiply the appropriate BTU per square foot by the square
footage you need to need.
Let’s say you live in a 2,000 square foot home in
southeastern Pennsylvania, meaning your BTU per square foot number is at 40-45.
That would mean you’d need an 80,000/90,000 BTU HVAC system to heat and cool
BTUs are an important factor in home heating and cooling.
Choose a unit with insufficient power, and you’re left feeling too warm in the
summer, too cold in the winter and paying a higher than necessary energy bill.
However, there’s more to determining what size heating and
cooling unit you need than just BTU per square foot. Consider these factors as
1. Your house
In addition to the size of your home, you’ll need to
consider some other factors. For example, if your living areas face south,
you’ll get more sun – and therefore more heat – in the winter months.
Then there’s the construction of your home. If you’re living
in a brick house, you’ve already got more natural insulation than someone
living in a home with wood siding.
There are even some external factors that can affect your
heating needs. If you’ve got a lot of trees or shrubs planted around your
house, you’ll have an extra layer of protection against cold air.
2. Your local climate
As we indicated earlier, the part of the country where you
live can determine the size of the furnace you’ll need. Someone in Maine, with
its often brutal winters, would want a bigger, more powerful furnace than
someone living in a more temperate climate.
Furnaces are required by law to have an efficiency rating of
at least 80 percent, and higher-quality heating systems will usually hit 98
This means two furnaces could be the same size but provide
substantially different levels of efficiency. You could purchase a smaller
furnace with a higher efficiency rating and still get the same amount of heat
as a larger unit with a lower efficiency rating.
Working out which size furnace to choose isn’t something you
want to tackle on your own. A qualified HVAC contractor can look at all the
factors we’ve discussed here—from home size to efficiency to BTU per square
foot – and determine what sort of heating system is right for you.
If you’re preparing to switch to a new heating system, All Seasons Comfort Control can help. For more than 15 years, we’ve worked with Bucks County area homeowners to make sure they’ve had the HVAC service that’s right for them. Contact us today to learn more.
When you bought your home, your heating system seemed solid.
But now that you’ve lived there for a few years, you’ve noticed some problems.
Heating and cooling bills that are higher than normal. Rooms
that seem too warm or not warm enough. You’re considering switching to a new
kind of system (gas instead of oil, a boiler
rather than a furnace), but the idea seems daunting.
A traditional heating system uses one unit that heats or
cools the entire building. With a zoned heating system, a network of smaller,
energy-efficient units sends warm (or cool) air into different sections.
The most common zone system splits the first and second
floors into distinct areas, although you can always have other zones added.
It’s a great system for people who tend to spend most of their time downstairs
during the day and head upstairs in the evenings.
A zoned heating system has three main components: an outdoor
unit, an indoor unit and a control system. The system works by transferring
heat to and from the outdoor unit to indoor units, which are connected by pipes
What are the benefits of a zoned heating system?
There are several benefits to switching to zoned heating, including:
Saving on energy costs – Combined with a programmable thermostat, a zoned heating system will allow you to realize significant energy savings. You’re not spending money heating sections of your home that don’t need to be heated
Everyone’s comfortable – Your family members might have all have different preferences for temperature settings. A zoned heating system can allow you to keep each bedroom at the setting they desire, while also eliminating uncomfortable hot and cold spots around the house.
It’s not just for heating – A system that provides you with zoned heating can also do zoned cooling, allowing you to be as comfortable in summer as you are in winter.
Is a zoned heating system right for my home?
There are several different types of homes that do well with zoned systems:
Any home that has more than one story
Homes that have finished, livable basements
Older or historic homes where it would be
impossible, or at least impracticable, to install traditional ductwork
Homes that have rooms that you don’t use because
they either get too hot or too cold
Homes with high ceilings or big windows
Is my home ready for a zoned heating system?
Are you embarking on a major a home renovation project? It
might be a good time to modernize your HVAC system too.
And if you’re updating your old, ducted HVAC system, why not
try something new in its place? Instead of a ducted system, go with a newer,
multi-room version, which can still utilize your existing ductwork while giving
you a more efficient and comfortable heating solution.
If you don’t have ductwork, don’t worry. A zoned heating
system will still work once you place indoor units around your house.
“No walls need be torn down, and the units can be carefully placed to blend into the aesthetics of both the interior and the exterior of the home. They eliminate the logistical and cosmetic challenges that come with a traditional, forced-air system. They also allow you to experience room-by-room comfort.”
If you think multi-zone heating will work for your home, contact All Seasons Comfort Control. We can examine your home and find the best possible heating solution, so your family will be warm and comfortable without having to worry about a massive energy bill.
In light of the recent developments involving COVID-19 (Coronavirus), All Seasons Comfort Control is taking a number of precautions regarding the health and safety of our employees, customers, and community.
You can now take advantage of our alternative, NO CONTACT, outdoor-only AC inspections to ensure your AC maintenance is complete prior to the summer season without having to allow a service technician in your home. Please contact us for details.