If you’ve been noticing a decline in the performance of your air conditioner, or if it’s been installed for more than ten to twelve years, it may be time for you to start thinking about replacing it with a more efficient model. Over the last few years, there has been a quantum increase in the efficiency level of air conditioners, and they now use much less energy to provide the same level of comfort or better. Energy efficiency is not the only consideration however, when looking for a new cooling system for your home or office—it is just one of several important factors to consider.
Inspect existing ductwork
According to the AC Man of Houston, a provider of home or office AC repair, it’s a good idea to inspect the existing ductwork thoroughly before having a new cooling system installed. If you have leaky ducts or disconnected ducts, it won’t matter how efficient your new air conditioning unit is, because the circulation of any cooled air will be inhibited or inefficient. Your inspection should check for sections that are too narrow as well as any that might be punctured or crushed. The best-case scenario would be to have your contractor conduct a diagnostic test on the duct system to determine if there is any degradation of airflow.
The size of your new air conditioner should not be based on the square footage of your home, but should instead be based on a calculation in a document known to Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) contractors as Manual J. This calculation takes into account all the relevant factors to cooling your home, like number of occupants, shade areas, indoor/outdoor temperatures, and the size of individual rooms. Oversized air conditioners turn on and off more often than they should, and undersized air conditioners run constantly, so sizing is very important.
Ability to dehumidify
Cooling systems have different capabilities in terms of removing moisture from the indoor air. The level of dehumidification that your air conditioner needs is dependent upon how humid the climate is in your region, and the level of humidity your house retains.
The newer models of air conditioners have a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) of 13 or greater, which means that the seasonal cooling output divided by the seasonal energy input is at least 13. What this means to the homeowner is that the cooling system puts out much more cooling for the energy it consumes than systems of the past.
Ease of maintenance
It’s a good idea to install the air conditioner with ease of maintenance in mind. For instance, air filters should be easily accessible so they can be periodically cleaned or replaced, and the inside coil should be accessible for cleaning as well. If an access panel is necessary with your new model, make sure it is installed in a location that’s easy to get to.
Proper installation location
Your new air conditioner should be installed on the north or south sides of the home, out of the direct rays of sunshine. There should be plenty of free space on all sides of the unit, as well as above it so that air can be freely taken in without hindrance. This means that there should be no trees or shrubs nearby, because these can not only obstruct airflow, but also can drop branches into the cooling system.
This article was contributed on behalf of the AC Man of Houston, your number one choice when looking for help to repair or replace your heater. Check out their website today and see how they can help you!