Efficiency vs Comfort advanced tstat settings

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Old 04-28-18, 02:33 PM
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Efficiency vs Comfort advanced tstat settings

Hi everyone,

As we end our first heating system in our new home with a HP and electric aux heating, I’m continuing to learn how these units function and how I can avoid another season of $600/month heating bills.

I’ve found our Carrier Infinity thermostat has an advanced setting where you can choose between efficiency and comfort. I’ve read a little about how this function works on gas furnaces but haven’t found much on how this setting impacts electric aux heat and heat pumps.

More airflow vs. Less aux heat? More time for the HP to do it’s thing vs. The aux heat kicking on so quickly?

Does anyone know? And does or will the efficiency setting = less cost to me?

Thanks
 
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Old 04-28-18, 02:45 PM
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From the Carrier manual:

Comfort is a decreased airflow used to increase the output air temp. and provide increased comfort.
Efficiency is the airflow used to meet specified ratings.

And here’s one persons thoughts who seems to think the efficiency setting will disable some of the Carrier features, particularly on dehumidification:

I've tried Comfort and Efficiency on my Infinity furnace. Blower speed is about 10% higher when heating in Efficiency mode (thus lowering the temperature of the discharge air). I haven't seen any estimate of how much difference this would make with respect to fuel consumption. My wild guess is that it's only a couple percent or so.

There are also equivalent settings for the AC/heat pump. In Efficiency mode, some of the fancy dehumidification capabilities are disabled. On heat pumps, Efficiency doesn't slow down the blower when heating in cold weather, so again, you get lower discharge air temperatures. Those changes matter for electrical efficiency, but it's still not a huge difference, and this one matters quite a bit for comfort.

So in my book, it might be worth trying Efficiency on the furnace to see if the difference bothers you, or is even noticeable. I wouldn't run the AC/Heat Pump setting on anything but Comfort unless you're in an arid climate, though. Those features are what makes an Infinity system an Infinity system. It'd be a shame to pay for them and then disable them.
 
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