Does your heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) system need a new blower? When the blower fails, you won’t be able to cool or warm your home. All HVAC systems need a working blower. If you’re thinking about buying a new HVAC blower, though, there are several things you should consider.
#1) Direct vs Belt Drive
Most blowers are either direct or belt drive. While they both consist of a motor and a fan, they are designed differently. Direct-drive blowers are designed with the fan sitting directly on top of the motor. Belt-drive blowers, on the other hand, are designed with the fan connected to the motor via a belt. Most residential HVAC systems use a direct-drive blower.
#2) Flow Rate
You should consider the flow rate when choosing a blower. Flow rate is a performance metric. It represents the speed at which a blower can move air. Some blowers have a flow rate of 750 cubic feet per minute (CFM), whereas others have a flow rate of 1,250 CFM. The higher the blower’s flow rate, the faster it will move air through your home. Flow rate is essentially the capacity of a blower.
#3) Fan Diameter
Blowers are available in different sizes. Some of them have larger, wider fans than others. The fan, of course, should be appropriately sized for your HVAC system. Most residential HVAC systems use fans measuring about 5 to 6 inches in diameter. Commercial HVAC systems, on the other hand, often use larger fans. Regardless, you’ll need to ensure the fan with which a blower is packaged is the right size for your HVAC system.
#4) Single vs Variable Speed
Something else to consider when choosing a blower is whether you want a single-speed or variable-speed model. Single-speed blowers are the most common. They operate a single speed – full capacity – when demanded by the HVAC system. Variable speed blowers are able to operate at different speeds. They will speed up and slow down automatically depending on the thermostat settings.
You’ll probably want to consider the price when choosing a blower. Some blowers are more expensive than others. Variable-speed blowers, for example, almost always cost more than single-speed blowers. Blowers with a high flow rate may also cost more than those with a low flow rate. Even the brand can affect a blower’s price. Regardless, you should consider the price when choosing a blower.