A/C efficiency has really taken off in the past decade, so instead of dreading a pending air conditioner replacement, consider the energy savings that await you, along with other benefits of replacing it sooner rather than later. But before you choose just any contractor to replace your outdated unit, there are four questions you’ll need to ask your heating and cooling professional.
Will you use the house-as-a-system approach?
The HVAC professional you work with should understand that the A/C is merely a single component in a bigger system. The contractor should address other factors that impact air conditioner performance, such as insulation, duct tightness, air leakage and solar heat gain. By hiring a contractor who can remedy these trouble spots before making an air conditioner replacement, you could improve cooling efficiency that much more.
What methods will you use to size the air conditioner replacement?
Rules of thumb – replacing an old unit with the same-sized unit, increasing the size for extra coolness or basing the size on square footage alone – don’t result in efficient cooling. The proper way to size an A/C is to calculate cooling loads based on insulation, window type and layout, home orientation, air infiltration rate, occupancy level and more, with the use of the Manual J load calculation tool.
Do you test for duct leakage?
Typical duct systems have numerous leaks that let cooled air escape into unconditioned spaces. Take the time to have your duct system checked for leaks and properly sealed before sizing your new air conditioner.
Do you assess airflow and make repair recommendations?
Other problems with ductwork impede efficiency by blocking airflow. Undersized, overly long, kinked or otherwise poorly designed ductwork could add hundreds of dollars to your cooling bills every summer. At a minimum, the contractor should measure airflow and make sure it’s within the recommended parameters. Ideally, the contractor will also measure the flow of air to each room and make specific recommendations for improving airflow and therefore efficiency and comfort.
To learn more about making that upcoming air conditioner replacement, please contact us at Overland Park Heating & Cooling. We have proudly served the Greater Kansas City area since 1983.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Overland Park, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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