I'm new so I apologize if this has been asked before. Thanks for the great info on your site - I have learned a lot already.
I'm shopping for a new furnace and air conditioner - I've found a recommended, reputable contractor with excellent warranties and prices good too (i've read your posts about excellent contractor being even more important than product).
My house is a small bungalow, about 900 square feet.
I'm looking at a high-efficiency furnace as I live on the Prairies in Canada - many months of extreme cold during the winter. Energy efficiency is important to me. I'd also like to add central air conditioning - I've been told a SEER of 10-11 will be fine here as we don't deal with the months and months of heat like some southern states do. But we usually do have enough really hot days each year to make it a nice luxury here!
I' ve learned on your site that the choice between single stage and double stage furnace is about comfort not efficiency. But I'm not sure exactly what a variable speed blower does? Is a variable blower even available on the single stage furnace? I think I've read that I should consider one because I will also be getting air conditioning and then it adds to the efficiency?
The furnaces I'm looking at are the Rheem Classic 90 Plus single or two stage furnace with Dual Comfort Control. The air conditioner I'm considering is the Trane 1 1/2 ton XR11. But I'm really interested in your answers about whether I should be looking at single or two stage furnace, and whether the variable speed blower is an issue in terms of efficiency.
This is all pretty new to me. Thanks for your help.
It is a comfort issue. The VS is available on two stage systems for certain.
On single stage 90%s I know only of one conpany and that is Westinghouse products (parent co. Nordyne) and the VS motor is available in a kit to be added on to furnace.
Altoughe I don't know how much good it will do you on the ac.
Luck to you
Other than Nordyne as curry reported, I don't think anyone else has single stage with VS blower.
The VS blower has so much more control over airflow. You sent what you want and it varies its speed to deliver that amount as duct conditions change. This is within reason. If ducts are way undersized, it still can't overcome that.
Also the VS blower uses a lot less juice. That's how it can raise cooling SEER a point or more.
And most systems have the capability to slow the blower in cooling in times of high humidity to suck out more humidity.
The Rheem RGRK is a fine machine. I sure would put it on a Rheem RAKB instead of a Trane. The Rheem uses a Copeland scroll and is very quiet. The Trane uses a noisy recip.