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Adding an Air Conditioner to Your Home


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Nothing beats the comfort of a central air conditioner in your home. Central air conditioners (also called split-system air conditioners) work with your furnace to blow cool air throughout the home. Achieving the same results using window air conditioner would require using 2-3 units.

We wrote this article to help you understand some of the processes involved in adding an air conditioner to your home. If you decide to add air conditioning, it should only be installed by a licensed competent technician. This article will give you the basic understanding of what to ask when talking to your technician.

Typical a/c components

Understanding Split System Air Conditioners

As mentioned above, the split-system air conditioner works with your furnace to distribute the cool air. It’s referred to as a split-system because the condenser unit sits outside of the home, and the a-coil sits inside the home in the furnace. When running, the compressor, located inside the condenser, pumps freon to and from the home. This, along with the aid of the a-coil, removes heat from the home. During the process the a-coil becomes very cold. The furnace’s blower then distrubutes the coolness from the a-coil throughout the home.

A-CoilWhen choosing an air conditioner, choosing one that’s the same brand as your furnace may help simplify the installation process. Then you’ll need to know how big of an a/c to get. The size of an a/c is measured in ‘tons.’ Talk to your technician about which size is best for your home. 2-4 tons is the range for most homes. If you get too small of an a/c, it’ll run all the time. If you get too large of an a/c, it may not run long enough; therefore, leaving excess humidity in the home.

If you want an a/c that runs efficiently, then you need one with the most ‘seers’. Today most air conditioners are 12 seer. Older ones tend to be 10 seer or less. However, our government has now mandated that all air conditioners sold will have a minimum seer of 13. Like anything, the more efficient the air conditioner, the more it will cost to buy.

Then you need to take a look at your furnace. Is your furnace a/c ready, or do you may need to get it ready?

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