EC Motors: What’s the Scoop?

What is an ECM?

An ECM, which stands for “electronically-commutated motor“, is a motor that is very important in different HVAC equipment. While these motors sound like any other motor, they’re actually brushless! A brushless motor replaces the carbon variants found in brushed motors with magnets. This change within the system allows for the ECM to adjust to its specific task at hand, whether that be through its torque, power supply, or speed.

Why it’s Important:

Recently, there’s been a change in the requirements for ECMs: they are now mandatory for every piece of HVAC equipment. According to Richard Bardgett from Nidec Corp. (a motor-manufacturing company), the two main modes of operation for ECMs are: “constant airflow within the system or constant torque of the motor.” The main reasoning behind this shift is to increase the energy efficiency of HVAC equipment installed in residential buildings. There’s also another type of motor: a PSC, or a “permanent split capacitor”, is similar to an ECM. The main difference is that a PSC constantly uses energy, rather than adjusting to specific tasks. This means that, with a PSC, your HVAC equipment becomes less efficient both in energy and in overall system quality.

What does this mean for you?

These mandatory motors, while they’re generally more expensive than other motors, save homeowners more money due to its adaptable nature! Since they are so energy efficient, you can save more money on your monthly energy bills. The savings in your bills make up for the higher pricing of the ECM, and allows you have more pocket money at the same time. Another perk to the ECM is that it’s much quieter compared to other motors found in HVAC equipment. For this reason, Happy Harold suggests you call High Performance Heating to quickly change or replace your system to match ECM guidelines. The faster you switch, the more money you’ll save!

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