It may be cold now, but warmer weather is just a few weeks away. Most people are getting their homes ready for the summer heat, even if they’re dealing with freezing conditions at the moment. If you’re looking to install a new air conditioner in preparation for the summer, there are a couple of things you need to consider first. Not every air conditioner is ideal for every home, and installing the wrong kind could cost you a lot of money and time. Make sure that the air conditioner you pick is the best for your needs by taking note of the following.
Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER, is the primary rating by which air conditioner efficiency is measured. The math used to calculate it is rather complicated, but basically it’s a number representing the amount of cooling output vs. the amount of electricity consumed. Certain US government laws have established a minimum SEER rating that air conditioners are allowed to be manufactured for, that number being 13 as of 2005. In order to qualify as a “high efficiency” air conditioner (like the kind that would earn an Energy Star qualification) a system would have to have a SEER rating of at least 14.5. This may seem like splitting hairs, but a higher SEER air conditioner can save you quite a bit of money over the lifespan of the system. Before you select an air conditioner, it’s always a good idea to look at the SEER rating.
How much output an air conditioner generates is another important way to determine whether or not an air conditioner is right for your home. Unlike the SEER rating, though, where installing a sub-par system will just cost you a bit more in annual energy bills, installing an air conditioner of the wrong output tonnage can have more significant consequences.
An air conditioner’s output is measured in tonnage, which is how much air it can cool per hour of operation. The actual equation is how much heat it can move required to melt one ton of ice in a 24-hour period, but that’s neither here nor there. The point is that it’s very important that you install an air conditioner that is the appropriate tonnage for your home.
If you install an air conditioner that generates too much output for your home, then the system will be shut down by the thermostat before it has the opportunity to finish a full cooling cycle. This behavior, called short cycling, is a serious threat to the health of the system. It will wear down much faster, have parts break down more often, and have a shorter lifespan overall. An air conditioner that is too small for your home will run into the same problem, but because it will be forced to operate for too long rather than short cycling.
Carney Plumbing offers air conditioning installation services in Perkasie, PA. If you need help selecting the right air conditioner for your home, contact us today to schedule an appointment.