When it comes to buying things for the home, the air conditioning unit is not the most intriguing. But it is one of the essential components. Choosing the right A/C unit may be the difference between utmost comfort and sizzling heat. Determining the right type of air conditioning unit and how to measure for it will help you find the ideal one for your home.
Types of Air Conditioners
Before you buy an A/C unit, you need to know which type is right for your home. Air conditioning units come in varied sizes, shapes, and prices. Below are four types to consider when shopping around.
• Central Units: This kind of A/C pumps cooled air from a split unit into an entire home via duct work. Although it is expensive, it is more energy efficient. If your home already has duct heating, this is an excellent choice for you.
• Window Units: A window unit sits on a window sill and pumps cool air inside a room and forces warm air outside. They are great for keeping single rooms cool, but in a larger home you may need several to keep the temperature comfortable.
• Through-the-Wall or Mini-Split Units: These systems attach to an exterior wall with the compressor and condenser portions of the unit on the outside and the controls and airflow on the inside. These come in various shapes and sizes. Some are meant for installation below a window while other designs allow for overhead placement.
• Portable Units: This type is ideal if you have limited space and want to move from room to room with ease. If you are conscious about home decor, portable units are very sleek-looking. Some portable units utilize a hose to eject hot air outside a window while others simply recirculate the air within the room.
Things to Consider When Choosing an A/C Unit
Once you’ve narrowed down the type of system, choosing the right A/C unit is not difficult. Below are the items to check when selecting the perfect A/C unit for your home.
• Capacity: When it comes to choosing the right A/C, it is vital to pick the correct size. Picking the right size does not mean the physical size of the A/C unit but for the output of your home. Generally, air conditioner sizes measure by BTUs (British Thermal Units) for window, wall or portable units or by the ton for central-duct units. To know the right size for your home, you need to know the square footage. For a BTU system, 8,000 BTUs will cool 350 square feet and 1,2000 BTUs will cool 550 square feet. For centralized systems, you add one ton for every 600 square feet of your home. That is to say, if a home has 3,000 square feet and you want to cool the entire house, purchase a 5-ton air conditioner unit. Figure out the size of your home and choose an A/C unit that is the ideal size based on tons.
• Energy Efficiency: Now that you know the size of the A/C unit, it’s time to think about energy efficiency. Energy efficiency may be complicated, so it’s best you consult an HVAC professional for expert advice. Choosing a more efficient A/C unit saves money, and it’s eco-friendly.
• Features: Some A/C units come with better features than others. Check for features such as smart thermostats, auto delay switches and fan-only options before buying an A/C unit for your home.
• Warranty: Before you buy, double check the warranty of the A/C unit to make sure any foreseeable malfunctions are covered. Some warranties only cover parts like the condenser or the pump while others cover labor and parts if the unit becomes faulty.
For expert advice on finding your perfect air conditioning unit, have an energy efficiency inspection done for your home, or consult an HVAC professional.