Four Considerations When Making an Air Conditioning Upgrade
If you’re considering a high-efficiency A/C upgrade for your Maryland home, there are many factors to consider before you make the investment.
Here are some of the most important ones:
- Size – Did you know that a properly sized air-conditioning system can reduce energy usage by up to 35 percent? The problem is that right-sizing your A/C isn’t as easy as taking room measurements. Other factors – the climate where you live, the style of your home, the number of windows you have, and the amount of insulation you’ve installed, to name a few – should also be taken into account. Together, these factors constitute the “cooling load” of your home.While there are rules of thumb for estimating cooling load, these formulas fail to take into account the complexities described above. To get a more accurate estimate, you’ll need help from a pro.
- SEER rating – SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) is the measure of an air conditioner’s efficiency (think of It like you would MPG in your car – the higher the rating, the better). Most the central air conditioning models we install have SEER ratings between 16 and 20.You’ll pay more for a higher SEER unit (about 8-10 percent for every 1-point increase in SEER, all other things being equal), but eventually the cost will pay for itself: the payback period of a typical 18 SEER central air conditioner compared to a 14 SEER unit is about three years.Also remember that SEER doesn’t take into account other factors that can drastically affect efficiency, such as leaky ductwork or improper installation.
- Portable vs. ductless – If you have an older home with no ductwork, your choice of A/C will be limited to either portable window air conditioners or a ductless (or mini-split) system. We highly recommend the latter: today’s ductless systems are quieter, more efficient, and less obtrusive than window A/Cs, and can even be installed in rooms without windows. They even have some advantages over even central air conditioning systems, including improved indoor air quality.
- Other Factors – Other factors that could affect your air conditioning choice include:
- Rebates – Many manufacturers and energy assistance programs offer substantial discounts on high-efficiency equipment (we’re up on the latest rebates by all manufacturers we carry).
- Manufacturer options – Always choose an HVAC company that works with recognized industry leaders. Carroll Home Services offers the full range of products from Carrier – one of the most trusted brands in home cooling.
- Warrantee – Compare warrantees offered by each manufacturer (we can help you with this).
- Who installs the system – Proper installation is vital to the performance of your cooling system. Always choose a company with experienced, knowledgeable, and certified technicians.
Ready to take the plunge with a new home cooling system? Now is a great time to do it. Contact Carroll Home Services today to get a FREE estimate on a new A/C unit for your home.