AC vs heat pump. Split vs package. Electric vs gas.
What to do?!
Finding the right HVAC system is not as easy as snapping your fingers. Educate yourself on the pros and cons of commercial HVAC options. It’s always helpful to talk with an HVAC professional to get your facts straight.
And check out this article where we compare 3 common types of HVAC systems.
Do the Splits: Traditional Split Systems
Split systems get their name because they come in two units: an outdoor unit and an indoor unit. These “split” units work together to bring you both heat and air conditioning.
The traditional split system requires ductwork to deliver the air throughout the building. They usually include an air conditioner with a condensing unit that’s installed outside the property. And a gas furnace that’s installed inside.
This type of system is the easiest and cheapest option for most people. It’s also the most efficient and gives you the most options. But it does require that your building has ductwork.
No ductwork? Consider a ductless mini-split system.
This is when one outside unit controls one or more inside units. The indoor units are installed on the walls or the floor and work similar to how a hotel AC works. They’re more efficient than a window unit and they’re the best option when you don’t have existing ductwork in place.
Pump It Up: The Hybrid Heat Pump
Most of us think of an HVAC system as the furnace and the AC combined. But there’s another option available: a heat pump.
Heat pumps are actually known for their cooling ability just as much as their heating ability. They work like an air conditioner, taking the heat out of the air. And they can work in reverse too bringing heat into the air.
You can opt to have a heat pump and furnace as part of your split system. This is called a hybrid heat pump. And you’d want this if you live in a colder environment.
That’s because a heat pump works off of electricity. And at cold temperatures, say around freezing, they aren’t as efficient as a gas-burning furnace.
The hybrid system allows you to use the heat pump as an AC and as a heater during mild temperature drops. And use the furnace when the weather gets really cold.
The Whole Package: A Packaged HVAC System
The packaged system comes in one unit. Instead of the split, which has one unit inside and one unit outside. The package unit contains everything and is installed outside your building.
You might want to go with a package system if you don’t have room for the indoor element of a split system. Packaged HVAC units are often installed on the roof of a commercial building.
One advantage of these packaged units is that they aren’t as loud. Since the components are outside, you won’t hear them inside your building. But they do require ductwork and aren’t as flexible as traditional split systems.
Know the Types of HVAC Systems
It’s important to know your stuff when you’re looking into a new HVAC system. The types of HVAC systems on the market have become more efficient and flexible over the years.
Consider a traditional split unit for the most flexibility. Opt for a heat pump instead of an AC to give you more heating options. Or consider a full packaged HVAC system if you’re short on space inside your building.
Thinking about installing your new system yourself? Think again! Here are 5 great reasons to have your HVAC unit installed by a pro.