A new air conditioner is one the largest equipment purchases you'll make for your home, and it's one that will impact your family's comfort and your household operating costs for years to come. To make the wisest investment, be sure to avoid these pitfalls:
Buying An A/C That’s Too Big or Small
A new air conditioner must be sized to match your home or you'll experience comfort, reliability and energy efficiency issues. For accurate sizing, make sure that your HVAC contractor performs a detailed load calculation and selects the equipment based on Manuals S and J.
Replacing Only One Unit
If just one of the two main components of your air conditioner fails or needs a costly repair, you might be tempted to save money by replacing that half of the system. This is a costly mistake because you'll lose out on any improvement in energy efficiency, put extra strain on the older unit and void the manufacturer's warranty on the new unit. Plus, you'll face another replacement in the near future when the remaining component fails.
Making Price Your Only Criteria
Picking your equipment and installer based on price alone can end up costing you over the long run. If you opt for the least expensive A/C with a low SEER rating, you'll pay higher energy bills over its lifespan. If you go with the HVAC company that puts in a rock bottom bid, they may not have the expertise to size and install the equipment correctly and may not stand behind their work if problems develop down the road.
Not Considering a Maintenance Contract
Routine maintenance is a necessity to benefit fully from your investment in a new A/C. With a maintenance contract in place, you'll have the convenience of reminders about scheduling yearly service that keeps your cooling system in optimal working condition.