Guide To HVAC Installation – Forbes Advisor

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Installing a heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system in your home may seem complicated, but with a little guidance, we think you’ll get it done. Even if you don’t have HVAC experience, this step-by-step guide can give you the fresh air you crave. Keep in mind that your local government may need to hire a certified, licensed HVAC technician. In this likely case, it’s still important to understand what’s going on so you can get an overview of the project.

When to Install an HVAC System?

Early spring is the best time to replace an old HVAC system simply because it isn’t needed offline for the highest or lowest temperatures of the year. Replacing an HVAC system really can be done at any time of year in temperate climates, but of course, the sooner the better.

A new HVAC system can be one of the best investments in a home, and the luck factor is high: think convenience and comfort. Plus, heating and air conditioning typically account for as much as 50% of a utility bill, so modernizing a low-efficiency system will pay off.

In the beginning of the pandemic, we all learned the importance of maintaining HVAC for our health. The “air space” or common environment for everyone living in your home is how germs spread and pollutants add to the misery for those with asthma and allergies. Outdated HVAC systems don’t filter contaminants, so modernizing can dramatically improve the air quality in your home.

Developments in HVAC systems over the past decade provide energy efficiency and new technology learns from your habits and adapts accordingly.

Safety Considerations

When in doubt, remember that you can always consult a licensed professional. And if you smell smoke or gas, contact the fire brigade. The best way to ensure a safe work environment is to stop and think: Do you smell gas? Are you aware of electrical faults in your home? Is there something in your house structurally unsafe?

Any of these can potentially cause serious hazards while working on the HVAC system. Any issues should be addressed before any work is done on the HVAC system. You can also protect yourself at work with the following:

  • Safety glasses
  • Wear gloves when handling sharp tools or materials such as pipes
  • Lift with your legs, not your back
  • Do not drink alcohol at work;


  • Reciprocating saw
  • vacuum pump
  • Refrigerant Scale
  • Cordless drill
  • Screwdrivers
  • Pipe wrenches and pliers
  • Cut and cut
  • Multimeter and voltage tester
  • Safety glasses
  • Gloves
  • Measuring tape
  • Flashlight(s)


Correct format new system; Calculate heating and cooling load

It’s important to make sure you find the right size unit — the size of a new HVAC can make a home feel comfortable or feel suffocating.

Installing the wrong size unit will lead to premature wear, shorter system life, higher utility bills, and inconsistent temperatures throughout the house over different seasons. A qualified technician must perform load calculations by gathering the correct information before making a recommendation, so if you are taking measurements yourself, be as thorough as possible.

This first part of an installation involves calculating the home’s heating load (HLW), taking into account the home’s location, age, size, and building materials, as well as nearby trees and sun exposure.

Research and upgrade current pipework

HVAC systems are expensive, so it’s important to make sure they work properly. First, check the ductwork for damage or debris that could be blocking the airflow. Clear all obstacles, most of which you find at outflow and info registers, often called shipments and returns.

Look for leaks and repair and seal any problem areas before moving on to other maintenance such as cleaning. Even if you purchase the best unit possible, an HVAC system will not perform at its best without properly sealed ductwork and adequate insulation around it. Both factors improve efficiency by reducing energy costs while ensuring proper operation.

One option for upgrading a system may simply be to repair an existing system. You may prefer a ductless heating and cooling system where you simply need to punch holes in the walls to connect indoor registers to outdoor heating and cooling units.

Find the ideal location for your unit

Choose the location for your unit, whether you have chosen an indoor or outdoor system. Ideally, you would do a thorough assessment of the location and then mark (with spray paint or chalk) where you want the unit. Be thorough with your measurements when determining placement (measure twice, cut once).

Installing the device

Most modern units are wall mounted, but if you have chosen to install a brand new duct system, we recommend that you follow the instructions supplied with the unit itself. Variation between existing manufacturers and those who may offer products in the future require this simple way out.

Whether you’ve chosen a wall-mount system or a more complex whole-home system, remember the steps above before picking up any tools. The manufacturer’s guidelines must always be followed, both to ensure proper operation and to maintain the warranty.

Check if the HVAC system is running smoothly

An incorrectly installed HVAC system can reduce performance by as much as 30%. You should do a final check before flipping the switch on a brand new HVAC, including listening for unusual noises and making sure the airflow and temperature in each room are consistent. Perform basic maintenance tasks to learn how to best care for your new equipment.

HVAC Safety Risks Every Homeowner Should Know

Turn off the power to the circuit that controls your HVAC at the electrical circuit breaker panel — that gray box in a cabinet that used to have fuses, but now just means flipping switches. You can test to see if there is still current flowing through that line with an electrician-approved multimeter before touching anything related to the circuit.

One of the major HVAC accidents is exposure to hazardous chemicals such as some refrigerants. Formal safety training is required to work with these substances. Some substances can cause severe burns or other injuries. Understanding each chemical can help you make the right choices when handling it.

Some refrigerants are labeled “safe” by manufacturers, but can pose a hazard if exposed to heat in any form, be it solar radiation, electric heating coil, or even human body temperature.

Be prepared for any possible accident. Do not take shortcuts to avoid additional costs.

When to call a professional?

If you’re in knots up to your ears, give your tape measure and gloves to someone who belongs the national organization of professional HVAC technicians. Hiring a technician to do your job doesn’t mean you’re off the hook. Use this guide to check his or her work, set up a timeline, and make sure everything is done right.

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