The scorching temperatures of Jacksonville’s summers make having an air conditioner a must for most homeowners. If you are looking to replace or upgrade your existing air conditioner, you must do your due diligence before making the final decision. Because of the expense involved in purchasing a new unit and the importance an air conditioner plays in your family’s comfort, you should consider things like the best-sized AC unit for your home and find the most energy-efficient model.
Choosing the Right Type of Air Conditioning Unit For Your Home
There are several types of air conditioning units available. Finding the one that fits your needs is vital to feeling comfortable in your home.
Window air conditioners are popular types of air conditioners. They work best in smaller spaces that have suitable windows for them. They are relatively inexpensive, easy to install, and fairly easy to maintain. However, they do offer some limitations when it comes to cooling power and durability.
Portable air conditioners are freestanding systems that sit on your floor and can be moved around because they are on wheels. They are used as a cooling system and as a way to exhaust hot air outside of the room. Portable ACs need to be near a window. They work suitably for cooling one room. However, they are not designed to cool larger rooms or multiple rooms.
One of the more popular forms of energy-efficient air conditioning is the ductless mini split. Instead of using ductwork, the cool air is transported through a 3-inch conduit. A mini split has an outdoor and indoor unit. They are easier to install than many central air-conditioning units, offer multi-zone heating and cooling, and can be cost-effective.
Central air conditioners are also extremely popular in North America. They circulate cool air through a system of supply and return ducts. They are powerful, can be used to cool the entire home, and do a good job of dehumidifying the air to improve the home’s comfort.
Finding the Right-Sized Air Conditioner
If your air conditioning unit is too large for your room, it can quickly cool the room, but it will do a poor job of removing excess moisture from the air. If the unit is too small, it will need to run continually to try to do its job effectively.
Find an AC unit that is the right size for your room, makes the room comfortable, and can save you money and prevent unnecessary repairs or expensive electricity bills.
When calculating the size air conditioner you will need, technicians will start by multiplying the length times the width of the room that needs to be cooled. Then, as a general rule of thumb, that number is multiplied by 25 BTUs (British Thermal Units). This provides the ideal cooling, whether hot or rainy, sunny or cloudy. For example, if the room you want to cool is 12′ x 15′ long, it is 180 ft.². 180 ft.² multiplied by 25, meaning you would need an air conditioner with a 4,500 BTU cooling capacity.
Other factors need to be considered when choosing the right-sized AC unit. These include the number of windows you have in the home, the level of insulation, the age of the house, the types of windows and doors you have installed, and how much heat from the sun the home receives. For this reason, it is best to leave sizing an air conditioner up to our professionals at Reliable Ducts Heating & Cooling.
Consider Your Budget
You must set a budget when evaluating the best air conditioning unit for you. The budget should not only include the initial cost of purchasing a unit but also should allow for the cost of operation, installation, and future maintenance.
When creating your budget, consider the pros and cons of the different features air conditioners offer. For example, an air conditioner with more features might cost more upfront, but you may save money by reducing electricity use. Additionally, more features may mean improved comfort.
A portable or window air conditioner is usually less expensive than installing central air-conditioning. However, the cooling power they offer is a lot lower. Installing a ductless mini-split unit may be more expensive than installing a window unit, but mini-splits are cost-effective long-term and many offer the option to heat and cool a room.
Consider the Technology You Will Want the Unit to Have
It can be frustrating to adjust the air conditioner’s temperature manually. And, if you don’t adjust things accurately, you could drastically increase your electric bills. Smart technology may be able to resolve some of these issues.
For example, a smart air conditioner that offers automation can be programmed to turn on or turn off based on when you are home. Advanced air conditioner technology goes beyond regulating temperature and humidity. If you forget to shut off your unit when you leave your home, geo-fencing technology can handle that for you. Some air conditioning units give you the option to receive alerts on your telephone or smart devices when you need to change an air filter or do maintenance. They can also provide reports about the air conditioner’s energy usage.
EER Ratings, SEER Ratings, and Inverter Technology
SEER and EER ratings show you at a glance the efficiency of an air conditioning unit. EER stands for Energy Efficiency Ratio of Cooling. It shows how much energy you need to power the unit and cool a set space. SEER, Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, measures the same thing. The only difference is that it focuses on the energy you will need to use throughout the heating season. According to federal law, newer air conditioners should have a SEER rating of 14 or higher.
Considering the EER and SEER ratings is essential because the higher the rating, the less power the unit consumes. The unit can provide better cooling and do it in an eco-friendly way. Units with a higher SEER or EER rating may be more expensive upfront, but they often offer long-term energy savings.
Air conditioners with inverter technology turn off and on the compressor less frequently. It just changes the speed of the compressor to match the cooling needs. Air conditioners with inverter technology are a little bit more expensive than those that do not have said technology. However, they do have the potential to save money on electrical use in the long run.
Maximizing Home Comfort With Reliable Ducts Heating & Cooling
At Reliable Ducts Heating & Cooling, we proudly serve Jacksonville, Florida, residents and surrounding communities. We offer high-quality, customer-focused HVAC services. We are a family-owned and operated company with deep ties to the community. For this reason, we are committed to honesty and are proud to offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on our services.
Our services include HVAC installation, repair, and maintenance. We offer duct cleaning and repairs. Indoor air quality, UV lighting, ventilation testing, and humidity control are just a few of the additional services we offer. Contact Reliable Ducts Heating & Cooling today, and see what it’s like to work with a company that provides transparent, all-inclusive services.