The part of a furnace that's responsible for blowing the heated air through your home's ductwork is called the air handler. Standard furnaces come with an air handler that only operates at one speed, so it's either on or off. In contrast, a variable speed furnace has an air handler that can provide a range of different airflow rates.
This ability offers three main advantages:
- Decreased energy bills - Variable speed furnaces are able to keep your home warm while using less energy. This is partly due to the fan consuming less electricity and partly due to its ability to operate at less than full speed. By operating at less than full speed, the fan can reduce how often the furnace must cycle on and off, which increases its heating efficiency.
- Increased home comfort - The longer run times at less than full speed can also improve your home's comfort. Longer run times offer better air circulation, which helps prevent the development of spots that are uncomfortably hotter or colder than the rest of the home. Lower operating speeds also have the advantage of being less noisy.
- Improved temperature control - A standard furnace matches your thermostat's temperature setting by simply turning on when the home's starting to get too cold and turning off when it reaches the set temperature. This means your home is constantly swinging from temperatures that are colder than the setting to those that are a bit warmer. A variable speed furnace lessens this problem because it can change the rate at which it's adding heat to your home. This allows it to better match the heating needs the home is currently experiencing, so temperature swings will be much less evident.
Many of the benefits of a variable speed furnace can be magnified if they're combined with other high-efficiency features, such as a multistage burner or a zoning system.
If you want help finding the best furnace for your home, contact us at P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling today. We've been helping homeowners in the greater Cleveland area find the best heating and cooling solutions for their homes since 1936.Follow @PKwadsworth
Paul Wadsworth is the President and Owner of P.K. Wadsworth Heating and Cooling. For 37 years, Paul has been providing heating and cooling services to the Greater Cleveland area. P.K. Wadsworth has been a trusted Cleveland HVAC service company for over 75 years. The company understand the area's construction and local heating and air conditioning needs. Paul has an MBA from the University of Michigan and a B.S., Industrial Engineering from Purdue University. Paul is the Chairman of COSE's Energy Advisory Council. He's been President of the Cleveland Air Conditioning Contractors of America and a founding member of the local chapter. Paul was born and raised in Cleveland and has been active in the local community. He resides in Cleveland, Ohio with his wife and two sons.
The opinions and statements contained in this article are for general informational purposes only and are not instructions. Only trained, licensed and experienced personnel should attempt installation/repair. The author assumes no liability for the opinions/statements made in this article. Any individual attempting a repair or installation based on this article does so at their own risk of loss.