Variable-Speed HVAC Technology: What Is It?

Homeowners in Kerrville, TX, know that energy efficiency is the key to lowering their heating and cooling bills. What you may not know is that the design of your HVAC system determines how efficiently it operates. Here’s an overview of two-stage and variable-speed HVAC systems and how they deliver more efficient heating and cooling.

The Basics of AC Operation

Central air conditioners are pretty simple devices at their heart. When they’re on, they use compressed coolant to absorb the heat inside your home to cool the indoor air. The secret to that process is a compressor unit that sits outside and removes the heat the coolant absorbed before returning it inside to absorb more heat.

Most conventional compressor units only operate at a single speed. This means they run at 100% capacity whenever your air conditioner turns on, regardless of how much heat they need to remove. That work level isn’t very efficient, though.

How a Two-Stage AC System Works

Some recent AC systems feature compressor motors that can run at two speeds. One speed represents the maximum cooling capacity of the system, just like a single-speed system would deliver. The other is a lower speed that’s suitable for times when there isn’t as much heat for the system to deal with.

The thing is, most two-stage AC systems can operate at their lower speed settings the majority of the time. Not only will that work level provide you with the same comfort and indoor temperature, but it can do so at a much lower operating cost.

Variable-Speed Systems Are More Efficient

Variable-speed AC systems extend the concept of two-stage systems a bit further. They can operate at various speeds, depending on the cooling needs of your home from one moment to the next. By doing so, they use only as much electricity as the situation demands at all times, saving you a bundle in the process.

The bottom line is that two-stage and variable-speed HVAC systems are far more efficient than comparable single-speed models. Although they cost a bit more upfront, they more than recoup the cost difference in saved electricity over time. If you’d like to find out how much you could save by installing a two-stage or a variable-speed HVAC system, call Five Cross Services LLC. We’re Trane Variable Speed Certified.

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