Whether you’ve never owned a central air conditioner, or whether you’re just looking to update, now is a great time to purchase a new AC. Today’s air conditioners offer a bevy of benefits that you quite simply won’t receive from an antiquated air conditioner.
However, even though all modern air conditioners far out-benefit all old school air conditioners, it doesn’t mean that all modern ACs are created equally. You must do your research when buying an air conditioner for your specific home. You must take a few things into consideration.
Before you go out searching for an air conditioner, the first thing you need to do is figure out how much you’re willing to spend. Ideally, you should figure a minimum amount to spend and a maximum amount to spend, and try to find an AC which falls between those two figures.
It’s important to remember that ACs are not cheap and that, as with all products, you get what you pay for. It’s not recommended that you buy the cheapest air conditioner available. You must consider that purchasing an AC is a big investment which will pay out over years and years of use. Don’t be too afraid to spend a little more for something of higher quality.
In order for it to cool your home adequately, you air conditioner unit needs to be the correct size. Air conditioners come in a number of different sizes, and are measured in total tonnage. Tonnage refers to an air conditioner’s ability to cool an area. The greater the tonnage, the more space an air conditioner is capable of accommodating.
There are a number of ways to find estimates for the amount of tonnage your home requires, but it is recommended that you call in a professional to get the most precise measurement possible. After all, buying an air conditioner is a huge investment. You don’t want to cut any corners when trying to pick one out. Doing this could result in more expenses in the long run.
How efficient it is
All modern air conditioners possess something called a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER. Each air conditioner’s SEER indicates how adequately it can cool down a given area without expending too much energy. The lower the SEER, the less efficient an air conditioner will be. The higher the SEER, the more efficient it will be.
Currently, states in the southwest and southeast require air conditioners with minimum SEERs of 14. States all over the rest of the country require SEER ratings of 13. The air conditioner with the highest current SEER rates at 33. Essentially, the higher SEER you can find, the less you’ll spend on energy costs.
Ducts or no ducts
There are two primary types of air conditioners: ducted and ductless. Ducted air conditioners provide better airflow and do a better job of stifling humidity than do ductless ACs. If you already have ducts for heating in your home, the ducted air conditioner is the no-brainer option.
But if you don’t already have ducts in your home, a ductless air conditioner can be a great choice. These air conditioners don’t provide quite the same airflow, but they are aesthetically more pleasing. Ultimately it comes down to personal preference. However, if you already have ducts installed in your home, a ducted air conditioner is recommended.
The long and short of it
When you buy a central air conditioner, you’re making a huge investment. ACs are built to last over decades and decades, therefore their costs are fairly high. In order to ensure that you get the most out of your money, you need to make a couple of considerations.
Figuring your budget, finding the correct sized air conditioner, taking efficiency into account, and deciding whether to go ducted or ductless will guarantee that you pick out the right air conditioner for you. Don’t get stuck paying more in the long run. Search smart, buy smart.