Factors That Will Influence Your HVAC Cost
HVAC systems are available in a variety of types, models, and sizes. A one size fits all policy cannot be used, when installing a new HVAC system or upgrading an old one. HVAC costs depend on multiple variable factors. These include everything from the unit price to installation charges, labor costs, electrical work, energy efficiency, duct work, zones, vents, permits, and a lot more.
Understanding what your HVAC costs include and how pricing is decided will help you design a budget for the basic purchase and installation and then for monthly utility bills and future maintenance of your system in your Bay Area residence.
- Equipment related costs
A. Type of air conditioner or heat pump
If you are investing in an air conditioner or a heat pump, you have options like ducted split systems, variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems, ductless mini splits, or water-cooled systems. An HVAC contractor can guide you to select the correct system for your house requirements.
B. Size and capacity of the unit
The size of a unit refers to its heating or cooling capacity. It’s paramount to size your systems correctly because an over-sized or under-sized unit will reduce efficiency and result in higher utility bills, which means that your monthly costs will rise.
C. Energy efficiency rating
Systems that are high on energy efficiency are comparatively more costly as compared to units that are less energy efficient. Although you will have to shell out a larger amount to purchase and install such systems, they will help you save money in the long run.
D. Replacement of heat pump
While replacing your air conditioner, it is a good idea to replace your heat pump too. This is an additional expense, but necessary for the two units to be compatible and give you efficiently conditioned hot or cool air.
E. Add-on features
Additional features like UV air purifiers or humidification systems can help you have clean, pollutant free air inside the house. This is advantageous for residents with respiratory problems. But it will incur additional costs.
- Installation related costs
A. New vs Replacement system
A replacement system usually costs less compared to a new system because all the infrastructure required for the unit is already in place.
Centralized air conditioning requires elaborate ductwork around the house. Designing a new duct system or modifying it to suit a new HVAC system can cost a lot. Costs will differ based on the length and diameter of the ducts, areas to be covered, complexity of the design, and material used.
C. Zoning and controls
If you need different conditioning for every room of the house, your system must include zoning capacity. This will increase costs.
D. Number of vents
The greater number of rooms to be cooled, more will be the number of vents you need, increasing your costs.
E. Building permits
Installers usually take care of all the paper work and building permits required for installation of new systems, but the permit costs are an addition to equipment and installation costs.