If your A/C is getting older, running up excessive energy costs, or just plain not cooling your home the way it should, it may be time to upgrade your air conditioner. But shopping for a new cooling system can be stressful. There are so many different models on the market, each with its own pros and cons, that it’s hard to know which one is best for your home. Which units are the most efficient, and will help you cool your home most effectively? Here are three important features to look for when you upgrade the air conditioner in your Coastal Bend home:
- Two-Stage Compressors. Most air conditioners operate constantly at full power, regardless of whether your house is just a little warm or a full-blown sauna. But a two-stage compressor will reduce the amount of cooling based on your house’s particular needs at any given time, scaling back when possible. This can significantly reduce your energy consumption and save you money. Moreover, the reduced capacity operation does a better job of air filtration and humidity control. The one thing you have to watch for with this technology is airflow when the system is running on the lower speed. This technology is not right for systems with long extended duct runs because it does not get enough air to the extremeties.
- Scroll compressor. The scroll compressor consists of two interwoven spirals or scrolls. One remains still, while the other orbits around it, rather than rotating, allowing it to be counterbalanced to minimize vibration. It then traps the refrigerant between the two and compresses it. It’s more efficient than the standard reciprocating or piston compressor, and extends your unit’s lifespan.
- Low noise rating. Both of the above features help reduce your unit’s noise level, but when you upgrade your air conditioner, be sure to look for a model that’s rated quieter overall. A louder unit is annoying not only to you but your neighbors as well, and can even cause hearing damage over time. Your outdoor A/C unit should have a sound rating of less than 76 decibels (7.6 bels). That’s slightly louder than normal conversation levels, and less than average city traffic noise.
For more buying tips and general HVAC advice, please contact our experts at CCAC, Inc. We’ve been the Corpus Christi area’s source for quality heating and cooling solutions since 1979.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Corpus Christi, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about air conditioners and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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