How to Choose an Air Conditioner

img_acinstall-lgBefore you say yes to a new air conditioner, it’s important that you have some facts which will help you make an intelligent purchasing decision.

Matching the Size Unit to Square Footage of Your Home

If you get an air conditioning unit that is too big, your home can end up damp and cold, and the unit will cycle on and off too often. If you get an air conditioning unit too small for your home, it will not be able to keep up with cooling demands and it can freeze. A lot goes into determining the proper size of the air conditioning unit, including: size of the home, number of stories, insulation, number and quality of the windows, and the amount of direct sunlight and shade your home receives. Collectively, this is called a cooling load analysis. Given all of these constraints, it is advisable to have an experienced HVAC technician work with you to determine the best unit for your home.

Energy Efficiency is Key

Homeowners can save 30- 50% on cooling costs and reduce their home’s environmental footprint by replacing an old AC unit. Central air conditioning units have a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) which helps buyers know how efficient a system is. The higher the SEER number – the more efficient the air conditioning unit. The standard ratio is 13.

Air Filtration Can Make a Difference

Look for an air conditioner with a high Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV). A value of 8 is standard. For family members who suffer from allergies or asthma, air quality is important. Also, ask the AC technician about other technologies available to improve indoor air quality.

Quiet is Better for You and Your Neighbors

If you want to reduce noise, ask about an air conditioning unit with a scroll compressor. Scroll compressors operate at lower sound and vibration levels than traditional compressors.

The Price Can Be Right!

According to CostHelper.com, the price for a new air conditioning unit can range from $3,500 -$8,000, depending on a variety of factors. A good AC services technician can help you determine what will best serve your needs and meet your budget requirements.

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