Buying a New Central A/C System
April 20, 2016
As summer stands in the not-so-distant future, now is the perfect time to start thinking about purchasing that new central air conditioning system your home needs. Before rushing off to buy one, there are some important things to understand that will save you some real money in the long term.
Why Central Air?
Central air works a bit differently than a conventional air conditioning unit, such as a window unit. The central A/C system works by circulating cooled air through a network of ducts that carry the air from the unit throughout the home. As the air makes its way through the house, it warms up and in return is eventually pulled back into the central air conditioner where it begins the cooling process again. This system of circulation is similar to how a dehumidifier works.
The advantage of a central system, as opposed to an old-fashioned A/C unit, is that it helps strip humidity from the air in addition to keeping your home at more stable temperatures by constantly monitoring the air.
How Do I Choose?
Central A/C systems are not only more convenient and quieter than room units, but they are also more efficient.
A big factor in whether or not central air is the right fit for you will be the ductwork required, meaning the system through which the air will actually be distributed. As central air systems are continually evolving, the requirements for ducts continue to change. So even if you already have central air installed in your home but are thinking of upgrading, it’s wise to consider what the implications may be for duct installation and renovation.
Regardless of your needs, today’s top units use up to 50% less energy than older models, while providing the same level of service. When you are making a purchase, look for models marked with the blue ENERGY STAR label to make sure that you are buying the most efficient unit available. If your central air conditioning unit is more than 12 years old, replacing it with an ENERGY STAR certified model could cut your cooling costs by 30%. ENERGY STAR certified central air conditioners have higher Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) and Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) ratings.