How to Choose the Right HVAC System for Your Home




HVAC systems have an average lifespan of 15 to 25 years. They tend to fall on the shorter end of that spectrum when they’re heating and cooling homes in extreme climates – the greater Sioux Falls area’s climate included.


Your HVAC system will provide many clues when it’s on the verge of kicking the bucket. These include:

  • Weird noises
  • Odd, lingering smells
  • Fluctuating temperatures
  • Abnormally high energy bills
  • Incorrect thermostat readings
  • Uncomfortably high indoor humidity levels


Whether your HVAC system is extremely old or indicating signs of imminent failure, you would do best to see to its entire replacement before it retires for good. An HVAC system’s furnace tends to give out before its air conditioning unit, but it is advisable to replace both at the same time anyway. HVAC systems with factory-matched heating and cooling units perform far more efficiently in the long run!

But how do you choose the right HVAC system for your home? You can certainly ask for assistance with so important a task from an HVAC contractor in Sioux Falls. You’ll also have a better chance of installing the right HVAC system if you do the following!


Choose the Correct Size HVAC System for Your Home

When an HVAC system is too large for the home it is installed in, it will needlessly shorten its own lifespan by cycling too often. When it is too small, it will fail to heat and cool the home effectively.

You can use the “rule of thumb” to estimate your home’s air conditioning needs: one ton of AC capacity for every 500 square feet of home. Unfortunately, the rule of thumb method often produces inaccurate results.

The Manual J calculation is far more accurate. Typically utilized by professionals, Manual J entails measuring a home’s square footage, evaluating its insulation, determining its optimal BTU values, and finally calculating the home’s HVAC load.

Manual J is an involved process, and laymen seldom find it accessible. That’s why the best approach to choosing the correct size HVAC for your home is partnering with a local HVAC contractor.


Choose a High-Efficiency HVAC System

A high-efficiency HVAC system may cost a little more upfront than a less efficient one. But its installation cost is virtually identical, and its greater efficiency is certain to pay for itself over the coming years. A high-efficiency HVAC system represents lower energy bills, more consistent performance, quieter performance, and superior air filtration which will have you and your family breathing easier all year round.


Consider Including Indoor Air Quality Components Alongside Your New HVAC System

Air pollutant levels are usually two to five times higher indoors than they are outside. These airborne pollutants may cause eye and throat irritation, exacerbated asthma symptoms and even severe illness, and they include:

  • Pollen
  • Viruses
  • Bacteria
  • Dust mites
  • Pet dander
  • Mold spores
  • Mycotoxins
  • Smoke particles
  • Cleaning chemicals


Indoor air quality (IAQ) components are designed to reduce the levels of contaminants that circulate throughout your home’s air. Whether you choose to install one of the following IAQ components alongside your new HVAC system or add one independently, you’re certain to breathe cleaner, healthier air.

  • Ultraviolet light air purifier: Kills airborne bacteria, viruses, fungi, and mold spores by destroying their genetic material.
  • Air ionizer: Emits negatively charged electrical ions into the air, forcing positively charged airborne particles to clump together and accumulate safely on the floor.
  • Ionic air purifier: Operates on a similar principle to an air ionizer, but draws air through itself so clumped pollutants accumulate within its housing.
  • Dehumidifier: Ensures that your home’s relative humidity stays within the optimal range of 30 and 50%, at which level mold is mostly incapable of releasing spores.
  • High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter: Traps airborne particles as small as 0.3 microns in diameter, including dust, pollen, and several species of bacteria.


Choose a Reputable HVAC System Manufacturer

Not all HVAC system manufacturers create their products equally. You want to do some research before you commit to an HVAC system to ensure it offers good energy efficiency, longevity, and reliability. Furthermore, companies that specialize in manufacturing high-quality HVAC systems typically only sell their products to reputable HVAC contractors – i.e. contractors who have demonstrated their abilities to correctly install and maintain HVAC units. Less reputable manufacturers usually sell their products to anyone who will buy them, which is why they are often installed by less capable contractors.


Choose the Best Contractor to Install Your New HVAC System

As we just touched on, HVAC contractors are not universally competent. You want to avoid working with a company that hasn’t got a proven track record of excellent work – not to mention one which will apparently cease to exist once you need their technicians to return to your home and fix something.

If you live in the greater Sioux Falls area, you fortunately don’t have to spend another moment hunting for a great HVAC contractor. PrairieSons offers complete plumbing, heating, and air conditioning services for projects of all sizes. Our experienced technicians take great care to install HVAC systems correctly the first time, and our 24-hour emergency service ensures we will always be available to address any problems down the road.

Whether you need HVAC installation, repair, or routine maintenance, we welcome you to contact PrairieSons today!