Five Tips for Buying a Heating & Cooling System

from wikiHow – The How to Manual That You Can Edit

When buying a heating and cooling system, there are several factors that must be taken into consideration. Purchasing a heating and cooling system will be an expensive purchase initially, but over time the expense will be offset by the efficiency of the system. Heating and cooling systems are now much more energy efficient than previous past models. Your costs to operate it should be lower both for heating and cooling and in overall maintenance than the original system that it is replacing. Here are some helpful tips on how to buy a heating and cooling system.

Steps

  1. Inspect your home and do an energy audit to measure the efficiency of your present heating and cooling system. Look for poor insulation, small holes and/or leaks in the ductwork.
    • A home energy audit will help you evaluate the energy needs for your home in addition to pinpointing problems. The process will be a beneficial step towards making your heating and cooling system more efficient and less costly to operate.
    • Consider hiring a professional heating and cooling system contractor to come out to your home to conduct the energy audit. Some utility companies may offer such services in your area possibly for free or for a low cost.
    • Browse the Internet for sites that offer free, helpful tips on how to conduct an energy audit yourself if cost is a factor in your budget. The Department of Energy offers suggestions on their website for home energy audits. A link to their website is provided at the end of this article.
  2. Conduct a comparison overview of the potential costs for operation and performance across several different heating and cooling system models and brands. Look for an energy efficiency rating label on any system product that you are considering purchasing.
    • Carefully consider all factors as you do your research before you make a purchase. Installing a new heating and cooling system is an expensive, long-term investment.
    • Review your heating and cooling requirements relative to the size of your home. Additional factors to consider include fuel costs, age of your home, its location relative to the climate where you reside and the floor plan.
  3. Contact your local utility company for information about possible incentives such as cash rebates. Many utility companies offer and provide some type of financial incentive for those that are considering installing a more efficient heating and cooling system.
    • Consider exploring possible tax incentives for installing an energy efficient heating and cooling system. Tax laws will vary depending on what region you reside in.
  4. Do some comparison shopping and visit several heating and cooling retail centers that sell energy efficient systems. Look at the different models and ask the store representative questions including whether or not financing plans are available.
  5. Select a professional contractor to install your new heating and cooling system. Research potential contractors to check for any complaints from past customers. Choose a contractor that is preferably licensed and bonded in addition to having a reliable reputation.

Sources and Citations

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