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Keeping Your Cool: Choosing the Right HVAC System for Your Texas Custom Home

The Texas sun is no joke. When building your custom dream home, ensuring year-round comfort is paramount. The Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system plays a critical role in keeping you cool in the scorching summer and warm during the occasional winter chill. This blog post equips you with the knowledge to choose the right HVAC system for your Texas custom home.

The Importance of Sizing Your System

One of the most crucial factors in choosing an HVAC system is proper sizing. An undersized system will struggle to maintain your desired temperature, leading to discomfort and higher energy bills. Conversely, an oversized system will cycle on and off more frequently, wasting energy, creating temperature fluctuations, not removing adequate humidity, and reducing lifespan.

The industry rule of thumb suggests a capacity of one ton of cooling for every 900 square feet of conditioned space. However, this is just a starting point. Several factors influence the actual size needed for your home:

  • Climate: Texas summers are notoriously hot. Homes in hotter climates generally require larger HVAC systems. But, if you insulate your home properly, this becomes less of an issue.
  • Home Insulation: Homes with good insulation require less cooling power than poorly insulated homes. Sealing the house well and utilizing sufficient spray foam insulation will go a long way in reducing your need for a large HVAC system.
  • Sun Exposure: East and west-facing walls experience more solar heat gain, potentially increasing cooling needs. To combat this, minimize windows in walls of high sun exposure and utilize porches to keep heat gain at bay.
  • Ductwork Design: Leaky or poorly designed ductwork can significantly reduce efficiency, necessitating a larger system to compensate.

High Efficiency – Your Wallet and the Planet Will Thank You

With Texas’ scorching summers, energy bills can soar quickly. Choosing an HVAC system with a high Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating is crucial. SEER measures how efficiently a system converts electricity into cool air. The higher the SEER rating, the less energy the system uses and the lower your energy bills will be. Look for systems with a SEER rating of 16 or higher for optimal efficiency in Texas.

Benefits of High-Efficiency HVAC Systems:

  • Lower Energy Bills: Reduced energy consumption translates to significant cost savings on your monthly bills.
  • Environmental Benefits: By using less energy, you contribute to a smaller carbon footprint.
  • Government Rebates: Many government programs offer rebates for installing high-efficiency HVAC systems.

Variable Speed – A Smoother, More Efficient Operation

Traditional HVAC systems operate with a single-speed compressor, meaning they blast cool air at full capacity until the desired temperature is reached, then cycle off completely. This can lead to temperature fluctuations, problems with humidity, and uneven cooling throughout your home.

Enter Variable Speed Technology:

Variable speed systems utilize a multi-speed compressor that adjusts its output based on the cooling demand. This results in:

  • Improved Comfort: Variable speed systems maintain a more consistent temperature throughout your home.
  • Enhanced Efficiency: By avoiding frequent on-and-off cycles, variable speed systems operate more efficiently, reducing energy consumption and lowering your bills.
  • Quieter Operation: Variable speed compressors run at lower speeds most of the time, leading to quieter operation compared to traditional systems.


  • Consider a Variable Speed System: While the initial cost might be slightly higher, the long-term energy savings and improved comfort make variable speed systems a worthwhile investment for a Texas custom home.

Multizone Systems – Tailoring Comfort to Your Needs

Do you and your family have different temperature preferences? Perhaps some rooms receive more afternoon sun than others. If so, a multizone HVAC system might be the perfect solution.

Multizone systems allow you to control the temperature in different areas of your home independently. This can be achieved through:

  • Zoned Thermostats: Individual thermostats are installed in each zone, allowing for customized temperature control. Generally, you are able to have up to four thermostats on one system!
  • Variable Air Volume (VAV) Systems: These systems adjust airflow to each zone to meet specific temperature needs.

Benefits of Multi-Zone Systems:

  • Personalized Comfort: Set different temperatures for different zones, ensuring optimal comfort for everyone in the house.
  • Improved Efficiency: Only heat or cool the zones that need it, reducing wasted energy.
  • Reduced Noise: Multi-zone systems often allow for zone-specific fan control, minimizing noise in unoccupied areas.
  • Eliminates the Need for Separate Systems – Saving Big $$: Multi-zone systems eliminate the need for several inefficient units in one home. With a multi-zone system, it’s like having up to four units in one house, for the price of one system!


  • Discuss Multizone Options with Your HVAC Contractor: Multizone systems offer greater comfort and efficiency, but they do require minimal additional upfront costs. Discuss your comfort preferences and home layout with your HVAC contractor to determine if a multi-zone system is the right choice for you and your budget.

Building with Built Green Custom Homes

Choosing the right HVAC system is an essential step in building a comfortable and energy-efficient Texas custom home. You can ensure your home remains a cool oasis during the sweltering Texas summers by considering factors like proper sizing, high efficiency, variable speed technology, and multizone systems.

Contact Built Green Custom Homes today to discuss your owner-builder custom home project. We can advise you based on your specific needs and recommend the perfect HVAC system to keep your Texas dream home cool, comfortable, and energy-efficient for years to come.

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Dennis Celsor