Manufactured homes have special considerations. Often time you will be sold a home that is heat pump ready. This term means different things to different manufacturers. Here are some questions you need to ask:
- Is natural gas available at your site location?
- Does it have a heat pump thermostat or a standard heating/colling thermostat?
- Is the return air sized correctly?
- Is the blower large enough (have enough horspower) to suport a heat pump or air conditioner?
If you own a manufactured home and you call a heating and air conditioning contractor, be aware:
- Beware the contractor that gives you a quote over the phone. There are just too many variables to consider. An on-site inspection of the home is necessary if you want the job done right.
- Does the home have a lot of glass or skylights? Occasionally a manufactured home will have a lot of glass and that glass may be oriented toward the south. If this occurs, the home may actually need additional ducting.
- If you're installing a heat pump (much more economical to run than an electric furnace), you may need to replace the thermostat that came with the home. They are wired completely differently.
- Often the return air grill (and ducting) is not sized correctly for the amount of air necessary to adequately "feed" a heat pump or air conditioner. It is vital that this be sized correctly for maximum efficiency. A too small return can literally starve your system, making it run poorly and contributing to frequent breakdowns and early failure.
- Too often, the blower on the existing furnace is not powerful enough to move the amount of air necessary to adequately cool the home. When this is the case, the blower must be replaced. The only way to know is to inspect it.