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Buying a New AC? Here’s What to Look For

Buying a new AC can be a hassle, and a big one if your former unit happened to bail on you during the summer. Needless to say, past mistakes are something you want to completely avoid and that’s why you should consider this list of essential factors. Want to know what you should let influence your decision? Take a look at the list below.

Suitable Horsepower

While it’s always a convenient option to opt for as much horsepower as you can, it’s rarely the best. Ideally, you want to match the amount of horsepower that your air conditioning unit has to the size of your room to get the most out of your purchase. In bigger rooms, you’ll need more horsepower, and so is the case with rooms that are often subjected to direct sunlight. With smaller rooms, there’s no need to spend your money on a 3.0 HP unit when you can easily cool the room with a 1 H.P unit. Not only that, but too much power will only end up making the temperature of your room uncomfortable. Too little power will also deplete your unit by overworking it.

Air Quality

Another essential factor that should be taken into consideration is the quality of air provided by your AC. Especially if you have any allergies or asthma, air quality isn’t something you want to compromise on. A decent filtration system will keep the dust and the other impurities, as well as, any odors out of your house. In other words, it will keep your indoor air as neutral and pure as possible. Add to that, if you’re sensitive to humidity, some AC units come with a dehumidifier. These will definitely make your breathing easier, and protect your house from humidity-caused damage.

Unit Type

There are two common types of residential air conditioning units in the markets. The first is the window AC which, as the name suggests, has to be installed in place of a window. It’s a single unit that combines the indoor and outdoor components in a single design which makes it cheap, but a challenge to live with. Aside from the loud noise coming out of the motor fan, you’ll be limited to installing it in place of or next to a window. On the other hand, there is the option of ductless cooling and heating which separates the indoor components from the outdoor components. So, in your living room, you could have your sleek-looking indoor unit installed wherever you want, and the less-appealing outdoor unit on the outside of the building. This stands for zero noise, a better-looking interior, and the freedom to place your air conditioner.

Efficiency

This is a critical factor for anyone purchasing an air conditioning unit since it affects power consumption, the air conditioner’s long-term health, and most importantly, the overall cost of having an AC. If you’re new to energy efficiency ratings, you’re looking for what’s closest to five stars (most efficient). High efficiency means that the difference between the power going into a unit and that coming out of it is minute. Meanwhile, an inefficient unit will consume more electricity for less cooling, costing you more money on electricity. Not to mention, if your AC’s compressor has to work double the time to bring your room temperature down 1°C, it only means you’ll be spending even more money on maintenance and, eventually, replacement.

Features

Sometimes, what separates one air conditioner model from another is nothing but the bells and whistles, and they can be quite attractive. Make no mistake, those added features on a unit are far from worthless. Some control how the air will be distributed through a room, like adjustable slats to control air direction, swing function, and adjustable fan speed. 

Other features are a lot more advanced, like wifi connectivity which enables you to control your AC from wherever you are. You could set it to cool the room before you arrive, or turn it off if you had forgotten to do so before leaving. While power and efficiency are more important, you should allow the added features to influence your decision a little. 

That being said, when making your final decision, you might be tempted to go with the cheaper options, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, there is one thing you should keep in mind. Overpriced products aside, highly-efficient air conditioners manufactured with durable components cost more than low-quality products. In most cases, if your decision is solely price-based, you’re most likely going to get cheated out of quality. Because a hundred bucks you save today can be the five hundred that you spend down the road, it’s best to seek quality before attractive prices.