This depends on a couple of factors. For example, during an in-home inspection, we’ll look at the square footage, layout, number and type of windows, average climate, and insulation. All of these factors and more play into the size of the air conditioner. You don’t want to end up with a small unit that can’t keep up with your cooling needs or one that’s too big and wastes energy.
Before calling, you may be able to troubleshoot the problem a couple of different ways:
- Check for a blown fuse
- Check for a tripped breaker
- Change your air filter
- Test the batteries in your thermostat
- Make sure the system is set to cool (at least 3° below the current room temperature)
SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating, which relates to how much energy (and money) an air conditioner will use in a year. The current air conditioners on the market have a seer rating from 13-25. The higher numbers indicate better energy-efficiency and more money saved on bills.
We suggest servicing your AC unit at least once a year, with spring being the best time to do so.
The outdoor AC unit is built to withstand the winter environments and shouldn’t be covered. Turning it on with a cover on will restrict the airflow and can cause serious damage. To ensure there’s no debris causing blockages or parts that need to be lubricated, we recommend setting up a springtime checkup with one of our technicians.
If appropriately maintained, air conditioners can last for 10-15 years. You may need a couple of small repairs along the way, but they’ll be much less expensive than a new unit.
There are a couple of ways to help lower your energy use during the summer:
- Get a smart thermostat, so your AC doesn’t run when you’re not home
- Regularly change your filter
- Keep up with maintenance
- Use ceiling fans whenever you can
- Keep your air vents open and unrestricted
There are a couple of ways your unit will indicate that it’s starting to fail. Ideally, if you notice any signs, you can start shopping around and find a new one before it completely quits out on you. For example:
- Your AC unit struggles to cool your home
- Your energy bills have suddenly increased
- Your AC unit’s starting to make unusual noises
- It’s more than 10 years old
In some cases, we will only have to repair the unit, not replace it. We can help determine if it’s more cost-effective to buy a new one or repair your old one.
If you are running your AC or heater we recommend setting your thermostat on “auto”. If you want to keep the cost of your bills down, use the “auto” switch since it only turns the fan on when necessary.
Just about any home can include central air. It may become quite pricey because of the ductwork that goes throughout the house. We recommend setting up an in-home consultation, where we’ll give you an estimate of the project and explain any alternative options.