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Your Complete Guide to Buying a New Air Conditioner

Image: A new air conditioner unit ready for installation. Are you in need of a new air conditioner to beat the scorching heat? Look no further! This comprehensive guide will ensure that you have all...

new-uni-install.jpeg Image: A new air conditioner unit ready for installation.

Are you in need of a new air conditioner to beat the scorching heat? Look no further! This comprehensive guide will ensure that you have all the information you need to make an informed purchase. Buying a new air conditioner can be a significant investment, but with the right knowledge, you can find a unit that is both efficient and cost-effective. Let's dive into the details and find out what you need to know!

Understand SEER for Optimal Efficiency

Air conditioner efficiency is measured using the seasonal energy efficiency rating, or SEER. As per federal regulations, air conditioner units in the northern half of the U.S. must have a SEER rating of at least 14, while the southern half requires a rating of at least 15 by 2023. A higher SEER rating means a quieter unit with more advanced features and lower operational costs. However, keep in mind that higher SEER units usually come with a higher upfront cost. A SEER rating between 14 and 16 strikes a balance between efficiency and affordability.

Determine the Right Tonnage for Your Home

When it comes to choosing an air conditioner, tonnage refers to the unit's ability to remove heat from your home. It is important to select a properly sized unit to ensure efficient cooling. An undersized unit will struggle to cool your home adequately, while an oversized unit will cycle on and off frequently, reducing its lifespan. Additionally, an oversized unit will not effectively remove humidity from your home. Factors such as local climate, insulation, home size, and window orientation determine the tonnage you require. It is recommended to consult a technician who can assess your specific needs.

Know the Cost of Installation

The cost of installing a new air conditioner typically ranges between $3,800 and $7,400, depending on various factors such as local market conditions, unit type and size, ducted or ductless installation, and the need for a new furnace. Before making a purchase, research the average installation costs in your area. Comparing different air conditioning units and their affordability will help you find the best solution for your home and budget. Consider exploring ductless options or window air conditioners for a more cost-effective alternative.

Obtain Multiple Quotes for Comparison

When it's time to purchase your new air conditioner, be sure to obtain at least three quotes from different contractors. Start by reaching out to the company that conducts your regular A/C tune-ups, ask for recommendations from friends and family, and explore online reviews for contractors in your area. A reputable contractor will carefully assess your home's needs and provide a detailed estimate. Beware of significantly lower quotes as they may indicate compromised quality or corners being cut. Opt for a contractor that provides quality work within your budget and comes with positive references or reviews.

A technician examining an air conditioner unit Image: A technician examining an air conditioner unit.

By following these guidelines, you'll be equipped with the knowledge necessary to make a well-informed decision about your new air conditioner. Don't forget to consider protecting your investment with an American Home Shield® home warranty, which can cover the costs of future breakdowns. Stay cool and comfortable with your new air conditioning unit!

Disclaimer: The content provided in this article is for informational purposes only. Please consult a professional for specific advice regarding your individual needs.