If you’re looking to replace your furnace this fall, and you’re hoping to get the highest combination of efficiency and comfort, one feature to consider is a variable speed fan. The blower fan on most furnaces runs at a constant speed and is either on or off, whereas a variable speed furnace can increase or decrease fan speed to meet your heating needs as they fluctuate throughout the day and night. This variable speed operation has several benefits, including:
- Lower energy costs: A variable-speed furnace never overworks, because it can regulate its operation to match heating needs. Because your fan isn’t set at maximum all the time, it draws less power, lowering your energy bills.
- Quieter operation: Running your fan at a lower speed when the top speed isn’t necessary means quieter overall operation. You won’t have the constant loud noise that accompanies the blower going on when the temperature has fallen. One fringe benefit of variable speed operation is that it continually circulates air. The air passes through your furnace filter more often, removing more particulates and improving your air quality.
- Improved temperature control. A variable speed furnace can maintain indoor air temperature with a precision that traditional one-speed furnaces can’t match. A traditional furnace pushes a predefined amount of hot air into a room until a temperature is met. Then it shuts off until the temperature drops again, whereas a variable speed furnace is able to circulate precisely enough hot air into a space to maintain a given temperature.
Furnaces with variable speed fans work well with other energy-efficient upgrades such as zoned heating controls and smart thermostats and deserve serious consideration in a whole-house approach to energy efficiency. If you have questions about a furnace upgrade and features to ensure your warmth and comfort during the coming heating season, don’t hesitate to contact HVAC & Plumbing Unlimited Heating & Air Conditioning. We serve homeowners throughout the Lorton area.