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Buying The Right Air Conditioner For Your Needs

Buying a new residential air conditioner is similar to buying a new car. The more you know going in, the better you look coming out. Today there are many more makes and models to choose from than there used to be. It can be a little overwhelming to say the least. There are some great products to choose from, but a well-informed buyer will always fare better with so much information to wade through.

We have many high-efficiency models of air conditioners on the market today. They are able to operate on anywhere from 30% to 50% less energy than the older models we grew up with. Even if you have an air conditioner in your home that is merely ten years old, the fact is, you could probably save yourself a good chunk of money if you upgraded to a newer model today. This is only one point to consider, however, as air conditioner efficiency is relevant to how it is used. Whatever your circumstance is, there are some units that can handle it better than others. Every situation is unique, and you need to be able to know what you need before you shop.


The size of the AC you want will be crucial to the entire shopping process. An AC is rated by BTUs ( British Thermal Units) which is a measure of how much heat they are able to remove every hour. To gauge how efficient an air conditioner will be, how durable it will be, what size you’ll need, and what your initial costs are going to be, depend on these following factors-

(1). Home Size and How Many Windows
(2). The Amount of Insulation in Your Home (ceiling and walls)
(3). The Output of Heat From Home Appliances and Other Family Members
(4). How Much Shade Your Home Receives on its Walls, Windows, and Roof
(5). The Amount of Air Leaking Into Your Home

All of these are points of consideration whenever you decide to purchase a new air conditioning unit for your home.

You cannot judge how well an AC will serve your needs by its size. A larger air conditioner can do a poorer job than a smaller one, and installing one may well cost you dearly in efficiency and effectiveness.

Efficiency Is Key

All ACs have energy-efficiency ratings. That is how they are identified. It is by BTUs that you gauge their capacity. When you are referring to room air conditioners, then the identifying term is ‘EER’ (Energy Efficiency Ratio). With a central air conditioner it is ‘SEER’ (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio). These are always visible on the attached ‘Energy Guide Label’ found on new air conditioners.

The ones that have the higher SEERs or EERs will be more expensive. Never let that dissuade you. It could be that a higher priced unit will repay you many times throughout its lifetime in lower energy costs. Always opt for the most efficient type of air conditioner you are able to afford. They do have a way of paying for themselves.

Another factor in choosing the right one is the noise level. Some AC units can really put out some noise. Units outside the home are not usually the culprits, but noise should be a consideration if you plan to use it in a high traffic area of your home. Noise is even more of a factor if the unit is in the bedroom. You don’t want to spend sleepless nights even if you are saving on energy costs.

Buying the right air conditioner is not difficult as long as you go in with these things in mind and you should come out with an air conditioner that will best suit your needs, and give you the best bang for your buck.