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Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning Full Course - HVAC Course (Part 24)

 In this part of Full HVAC Course, we will see about Energy Efficiency in HVAC Systems.

What is Energy Efficiency?

Energy efficiency refers to the ability of a device or system to use less energy than its initial cost would indicate. There are many different ways to measure energy efficiency, but they tend to fall into two categories: energy usage per unit of output (i.e., how much electricity/heating/cooling does it consume to produce 1 kilowatt-hour of electricity?) and total energy consumption over a period of time.

Does Energy Efficiency Matter in Climate Control?

Yes! A lot of people overlook energy efficiency in climate control systems. We’ve all heard about how “green” our homes are, but what if we really make green improvements? In addition to having a healthier environment, energy-efficient technologies help us save money — especially on utility bills. If you’re interested in saving some money on your air conditioning bill, here are some tips to get started:

• Check out the Energy Star label — these products were tested to be at least 20% more efficient than national standards require. You can find them in appliances (refrigerators, dishwashers, etc.), lighting, heating, water heaters, and even insulation.

• Keep an eye on your thermostat settings; you may have programmed yours to higher temperatures than necessary. A good rule of thumb is 90°F to 110°F, depending on the type of home you live in.

• Use fluorescent bulbs wherever possible, because they last longer and use less energy. Most experts recommend CFLs (compact fluorescents) or LED lights (light emitting diodes).

How Can I Improve My Home’s Efficiency?

There are many things you can do to improve your home's energy efficiency. Here are just a few ideas:

• Seal windows and doors well.

• Install weather stripping around outside door frames.

• Insulate hot surfaces and add ceiling fans where possible.

• Switch off lights and power strips whenever they're not being used.

                    The heating and cooling system is arguably the most expensive piece of machinery in any building. So how do you save money while still keeping your home comfortable? A few things to think about are:

- Insulation - Insulate your ductwork and attic spaces. Duct insulation should only have R-19 rating or higher (depending on the climate).

- Window Films - Consider window films which help keep heat out. These films block UV rays and reflect infrared radiation back into space which reduces heat transfer.

- Fans - Consider using exhaust fans to remove hot air instead of opening windows.

- Energy Star Products - Look for products that use less electricity than traditional HVAC equipment.

- Variable Speed Drives - When you turn down the temperature on your thermostat, don't make the fan run faster; just reduce the speed.

1. Energy efficiency rating scale

There are different ways to evaluate how efficient a system is. Two of them are the R-value or U-factor rating and the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating). While the first is based on a mathematical calculation, the second is based on energy consumption over time. As you're about to learn, the higher the number, the more energy efficient the unit is. In order to find out what the best rating is for your specific situation, we recommend going to www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?chome&lngen. There, you'll find a list of recommended ratings for each type of system.

2. Airflow

The airflow rate determines how much air enters the space during heating season, and exits during cooling season. A properly sized system should have a minimum airflow rate of 4 cubic feet per minute (CFM) (18 liters per minute), although 5 CFM units are recommended. For maximum efficiency, try to install units with at least 8 CFM rates.

3. Ductwork

Most HVAC units are installed in ductwork as opposed to free-standing units, making the size of the ductwork part of the installation cost. If you plan on installing a central forced ventilation system, make sure to choose a unit with enough capacity to accommodate the duct size.

4. Unit sizes

A larger unit does not necessarily mean that it's more efficient. Each unit comes with its own set of specifications, including wattage output, BTU input, and CFM rate. When selecting a unit, remember to check these numbers before purchasing.

5. Seasonal operation

If you're planning on using your unit year round, make sure that the unit comes equipped with a seasonal control function. These controls ensure that the unit operates efficiently during the peak heating and cooling seasons, reducing energy usage and increasing the lifespan of the equipment.

                                Heat pumps are a great way to save money while maintaining comfort levels. If you have ever visited a house with a heat pump before, then you know how much they can reduce your energy bills. There are many different types of heat pumps that are available to consumers today, ranging from small systems that fit in a closet to larger units that can heat entire homes. Heat pumps provide a clean, safe, and controlled method of heating and cooling your home.

There are two main components to any heat pump system. One is the compressor, which gets its power from electricity. The second component is the condenser coil, which transfers heat out of your air conditioning unit. These coils are located outside and are connected to the ductwork inside the home, transferring the heat to the home. A fan circulates the air throughout the home, and the air enters and exits through vents. When cold weather arrives in the fall and winter months, the compressor turns on and sends warm air through the coils, removing the heat from the home. In springtime and summer, when the temperature rises, the compressor shuts off and cool air passes through the coils, storing the heat within the home. Air conditioners and heat pumps work together to keep your home cool. Without a heat pump, you would need a separate air conditioner unit to cool down the air inside the home. Most people don’t realize, however, that heat pumps function just as well in warmer climates as they do in cooler ones.

The compressor, fan, and coils are the three main parts of any heat pump system. When choosing a heat pump, make sure that these components are installed correctly and that the air flow is properly maintained. Your contractor should be able to tell you if the installation was done properly. You may want to hire someone else to check over the work for you to ensure that everything is working correctly.

When looking at heat pumps online, you must take note of their efficiency ratings. Many manufacturers give a rating based on their minimum efficiency level, which means that the higher the number, the less efficient the unit. An example of this is the ENERGY STAR label, which is given to air conditioners and heat pumps that meet certain standards set by the government. The amount of energy savings you will get from purchasing a particular heat pump system will vary depending on several factors, including the size of your home and whether or not you use air conditioning in the summer.

Heat Recovery Ventilation Systems (HRVs)

The use of HRVs is based off of a simple concept called “Heat recovery”. When air enters an industrial space, the temperature increases; however, the heated air is then cooled down via ventilation. The cooling occurs due to evaporation of water, which takes place when air passes over cooling coils. As the air cools, moisture condenses out of the air and eventually ends up being collected into buckets and drains.

One of the main advantages of using HRVs is that they help decrease the amount of energy used, while at the same time increasing comfort levels inside the building. In addition, they have been known to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to 40%.

                        The first thing you should know about heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems is that they operate differently than residential furnaces, boilers, water heaters, etc. These differences can mean big savings if you use them correctly. Here’s what you need to know.

Energy Efficiency

HVAC systems operate at lower temperatures than traditional appliances, meaning less energy consumption. An average home uses around 10% of its total power usage on the furnace/air conditioner.

Heat Recovery Ventilation (HRVs)

All homes have ventilation, whether through windows, doors, or air handlers. In fact, most ventilation systems don't even have any control over their temperature setting. HRVs work differently. By utilizing the cooling system to cool outside air before exhausting it out the house, HRVs help decrease the amount of energy consumed. They typically have higher efficiency ratings than standard ventilation fans.

Cooling Seasonality

If you live in a place where air conditioning is not necessary year-round, consider installing a programmable thermostat. You can save money when using HVAC systems during off-peak hours, such as evenings and weekends.

Variable Speed Technology

Most people turn their HVAC's fan speed to high whenever they're sleeping or watching television. Most variable-speed technology automatically lowers the fan speed while the unit is running. If you find yourself turning the fan speed back up, this could indicate that you're wasting electricity—especially if you've got children who tend to play on electronics for extended periods of time.

Sensors & Controls

There are many ways to enhance the efficiency of your HVAC system. One example is sensor controls, which allow the unit to adjust its settings based on user habits. Other examples include low-voltage lighting, smart thermostats, and intelligent ductwork. All these features help cut down on wasted electricity and improve the way the entire system operates.


You may think you don't need insulation, but you do. Your HVAC system helps keep your home warm or cool by circulating room air throughout the space. That means it has to push cold or hot air around. To make sure the air flows efficiently, you want to insulate the ductwork.

                                The first thing we need to understand about air conditioners is that they have two different types of uses. One is cooling and the other is dehumidification. When you choose an air conditioned space, you are choosing between cooling and dehumidifying. If you want to keep food fresh in a refrigerator, you would put it in the fridge. However, if you don't care about the temperature inside the kitchen, then you could just leave the door open and let the cool air circulate around the room. You wouldn't put food in the fridge while you're working or doing homework. We do similar things with our homes when we use climate control systems. Air conditioning is used to keep out unwanted elements, like insects and moisture. In both cases, we are trying to maintain a certain level of comfort.

When we talk about energy efficiency, we are talking about reducing the amount of power we use to get the same effect. Energy efficiency is measured by dividing the total electricity consumed by the device, divided by how much work was done (in this case, saving money). Because it's not possible to directly measure the total work that was done, we have to calculate the energy consumption based on the amount of time spent using the product and the cost of the item.

So, if I take my current AC unit and replace it with a newer model, what happens? Well, the new unit will consume less energy than my old unit did. But at the end of the day, I'm still going to pay the same amount for electricity. Why? Because even though the new unit uses less energy, it does the same job. So, here's the question - Is it worth it? Let's look at some numbers before you decide.

Cost Per Hour

We'll start off by looking at a basic example. Say that I have a window AC system and my house gets 10% cooler throughout the year. Now, assume that my AC costs me $150 per month. That means each hour I spend using it costs me $15. How much will replacing the AC with a model that consumes 20% less energy save me?

Well, if I replaced the system with a newer model, I'd now be spending $90 instead of $150. So, I've saved $60 over 24 hours.

Let's move to a more realistic situation. Assume that you have an A/C unit that runs for 8 hours a day, 365 days a year. And, say that a replacement system would cost you $200 a month. Can you save enough money to justify the investment?

Well, again, we find ourselves saving 60 hours of AC usage for each month. At $15 per hour, that's a savings of $900 a month. That's $10,800 a year! I think that justifies the cost. If you aren't willing to spend that kind of cash, then you can always try installing solar panels or wind turbines. These methods of generating energy are cheaper than any type of AC, but they require maintenance and upkeep.


Energy efficiency is a great way to reduce your electric bill and make sure that you are getting good service for the price you're paying. There's no doubt that it's a worthy investment. But, be sure to consider whether or not you really need to invest in a new system. If you're satisfied with the performance of your current AC unit, it may not be worth replacing it.

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