How to Investigate Your Air Conditioner to Find Information
Do you know everything you need to know about your air conditioner? Other than how to turn it on and off and input thermostat settings, many people don’t know much about the unit that’s keeping them comfortable (or not) all summer long. This is even more likely if the unit was already installed by a previous owner when you bought the house.
The manufacturer’s label, generally located on the outdoor component of a central air conditioner, can tell you a lot. Here’s some info you can get a glance or with a little additional research:
- Model and serial number. If you don’t the age of an existing unit, copy down the model and serial number shown on the label — often indicated by “M/N” and “S/N” respectively. Contact the manufacturer’s customer service department (there’s usually a link on the company website) with the model and serial number. They can usually give you a manufacturer date for the unit.
- BTU capacity. Air conditioner “capacity” refers to the amount of heat energy, expressed in BTUs, the unit can remove from your home every hour. Each home requires a specific A/C capacity to keep it cool, depending on the size and thermal characteristics of the house. Most manufacturers incorporate a three-digit number sequence following the model number which indicates the unit’s BTU capacity. This number typically ranges between 018 and 060 and represents the capacity in thousands of BTUs — i.e., 018 indicates 18,000 BTUs of capacity and 060 means 60,000 BTUs.
- Filter info. To make sure you’re replacing the system air filter with the right size, check the writing printed on the frame of the installed filter. Typically, it will indicate the dimensions in inches (height, width and thickness) or a manufacturer’s part number that can direct you to the correct replacement.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues — especially HVAC and plumbing issues — so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.