There are few design decisions that affect your home as significantly as your choice of a heating and cooling system. The heating system affects both long and short term costs, comfort, health, and resale value of your home.
Cutting-edge equipment and careful installation combine for high-efficiency. SunTerra Homes has incorporated several types of high-performance heating and cooling systems to further reduce annual energy expenses. These include: geothermal heat pumps, air-to-water heat pumps, active solar and night flush passive cooling.
These systems are designed to lower electrical heating and cooling costs by an additional 50 to 70 percent.
Most SunTerra clients choose hydronic radiant floor heating for comfort and efficiency. This system can also be used for cooling, but the capacity is limited by the potential for condensation on the floor surface. When cooling needs exceed the capacity of the hydronic floor, an additional air distribution system is used.
Alternative heating systems, including solar and waste heat recovery, capture free energy for your home. Your home’s hot water needs can also be reduced by the use of the high-performance energy systems installed in most SunTerra homes. If you choose a heat pump for space heating, a desuperheater can be added to reduce your water heating cost by more than 50 percent. Active solar in many areas is a good choice for preheating your hot water. It can contribute up to 80 percent of the energy needed.
Because some high-performance systems require a substantial initial expenditure when compared to conventional equipment, the expense of a system and its savings potential are extremely important considerations. The availability of solar energy, cost of utilities, the siting of your home, equipment and installation costs, energy savings, etc. must all be carefully evaluated.
Federal, state and utility companies offer financial rebates and tax credits for the use of alternative energy systems to help offset the additional installation expense.