How Can Climate Impact the HVAC System You Purchase?

When selecting new HVAC components, climate impact is an important consideration. Conditions imposed by weather influence the ultimate performance and efficiency of any new air conditioner or furnace. You can’t alter climate impact, so making sure the HVAC unit you purchase is appropriate to local conditions is vital. An experienced HVAC contractor is familiar with the specifics of the local climate and can offer input to help you make an informed decision.

Here are ways climate impact affects cooling and heating:


Because moist air holds more heat, local humidity affects indoor comfort and HVAC energy efficiency.

  • The air-conditioning process extracts humidity from the air at the system’s indoor evaporator coil. As humidity rises — levels above 50% relative humidity are generally considered high — lower thermostat settings are required to stay cool. Higher energy consumption, increased cooling costs, and more system wear and tear result.
  • During winter, homes in locales with low natural humidity often feel stubbornly cold. This means higher furnace thermostat settings and increased energy consumption are needed to stay comfortable. An indoor level of 30% to 40% is generally optimum for furnace efficiency and performance. Humidity below that range may require an indoor humidifier to augment furnace operations.


Season-long comfort and efficiency depends on AC and furnace performance.

  • An air conditioner doesn’t add coolness to your home; it moves heat out. Coolness is simply the result of extracting heat. Every air conditioner model has a finite capacity to remove heat, expressed by BTUs per hour. If the local climate impact includes temperatures that exceed the fixed capacity of a specific air conditioner, the unit won’t be able to maintain comfort and efficiency.
  • Cold, dry winter air doesn’t hold heat efficiently. Furnaces run longer cycles and consume more energy to warm the home. Optimum winter comfort relies on factors like home insulation and structural air leakage, as well as accurately matching the BTU capacity of a specific furnace to the size of the house and the impact of the local climate.

Paitson Bros., your Terre Haute source for trusted HVAC information since 1922, is very experienced with the climate impact in western Indiana.

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