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How a Variable Speed Furnace Operates More Efficiently Than a Traditional Furnace

  • November 2013
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In the competition for maximum performance and efficiency, a variable speed furnace trumps a conventional, single speed model every time.  One-speed, on/off furnace blower motors deliver 100 percent output all the time they’re on. While total output sounds good on a cold winter night, there’s a major drawback: Your home only requires full-blast air circulation during very limited spans. The rest of the time, it’s just an energy drain. What’s worse, single-speed blowers actually contribute to decreased comfort in living spaces. Here’s why upgrading to a variable speed furnace is a better idea:

  • Increased energy efficiency. Many people forget that the electricity consumption of a gas-fired furnace is a major contributor to its overall operating cost. Standard PSC (permanent split capacitor) motors in single-speed furnace blowers use up to 500 watts of electricity. The ECM (electronically commutated motor) technology incorporated in a variable speed motor sips electrical power at a rate of less than one-quarter the consumption of a single-speed blower. Continuous low-speed operation also puts less wear and tear on the motor and increases expected service life.
  • Enhanced indoor comfort. While a variable speed furnace delivers full output when the home’s heating load requires it, the balance of the time the blower runs extended “on” cycles across a range of lower speeds. This eliminates the abrupt temperature changes of a conventional blower and keeps the household comfort level consistent. Single-speed, “on/off” blowers often allow substantial temperature swings above or below the thermostat setting, but a variable speed blower typically maintains temperatures to within two degrees of the thermostat target.
  • Quieter operation. The familiar roaring sound of rushing air in furnace supply ducts is a consequence of a full-blast, single-speed blower.  As the blower repeatedly cycles on and off, the alternation of loud blower noise with silence is even more conspicuous. The lower, more continuous air output of variable speed operation produces fewer decibels in the ductwork and less distracting, on/off contrast.

For more information about upgrading to the benefits of a variable speed furnace in Lufkin, Gary or the surrounding areas, contact Meyer’s today.