From keeping your home and family cool to removing humidity and maintaining healthy air quality levels, an air conditioning system that is in proper working condition is imperative. Unfortunately, these systems are not meant to last forever, so there will come a time when you need to install a new one. Thankfully, the right AC system can be a great investment. Of course, if you are like many homeowners, you may not know where to begin when replacing your AC system with a new model. With this guide, you will learn a few essential things to consider when choosing and installing a new air conditioning system.
Again, your system will not last forever, no matter how great you think the brand is or how well it has been maintained. On average, you can expect a system to last between 12 and 17 years, so if your system is at or approaching this age and you are noticing signs of distress, it is time to install a new one.
Knowing the signs of distress is smart to ensure your family is comfortable and to reduce energy waste.
If you are noticing that your home is not getting cool even though the AC is running or you feel warm air flowing out of the vents, your system is in obvious distress. An unexplained increase in your energy bills may also stem from a faulty air conditioning system. Other signs of AC unit distress may include frosty residue on the unit and connecting lines or loud noises in the system when it is in operation.
Consider the Specs
When choosing a new air conditioning system for your house, you also need to focus on the unit's specifications. Most people are surprised to learn there are not only different sizes but also different SEERs or energy ratings.
To get started, you and the contractor will need to determine what size is right for your home. Units are measured in tons, which does not refer to the unit's weight but how many tons of warm air can be removed from the home. A higher tonnage will cool more effectively because it is capable of removing more warm air from the home. However, bigger is not always better.
If the unit has too many tons for your home, your system will reach the set temperature sooner, shutting the system down before the air conditioning has a chance to remove both warm air and humidity from the air. This is known as short-cycling. If your home has high levels of humidity, it may be due to an oversized system.
The SEER rating is also an important spec to consider when choosing a system. SEER refers to seasonal energy efficiency ratio. Basically, the higher the SEER rating is, the more energy-efficient the system is.
Contractors can complete a load calculation, which takes the square footage, layout, and your local climate into account, to determine the best tonnage and SEER for the most effective and efficient air conditioning system.
More Than Just Units
Once you decide it is time to replace your AC unit and you know what unit is right for your home, you may think that is all the decisions you need to make. In reality, there are many other components that make up an efficient AC system.
Contractors should inspect your entire home and system to ensure all components are working as directed. For example, ductwork may have torn seams or holes that are preventing the system from moving conditioned air through properly. Even though you have a new unit, faulty ductwork will affect the system's efficiency, so replacing the ductwork may also be necessary.
Help is available when you are ready to update your home's air conditioning system. This guide will get you started with your air conditioning replacement.