Choose the Best AC Unit for Your Home

Choose the Best AC Unit for Your Home

Air conditioners are one of the most common electrical appliances in homes in the US. Therefore, when you are choosing an AC unit to help keep you comfortable, make sure you choose the best one for your particular home. Making the right choice is crucial to not only your comfort, but is also important in order to minimize the energy consumption.

Take your time to do some research about the air conditioning unit you wish to purchase. You need to know how much cooling you actually need for your home. Having this information before you purchase can eliminate buying a unit that doesn’t serve your needs.

Different types of AC units

There are different types of air conditioners, each having their own pros & cons.

Window Air Conditioner

A window air conditioner is one complete unit that you install in your window. You do not need to install any ductwork. One part of the unit faces inside and the other faces outside the room.

Window air conditioners come in different sizes and are ideal for use in individual rooms. They are suitable if you’re looking to cool a single room or a small area. However, if your home is small or you have an open floor plan, you could choose a large window air conditioner that can handle the job.

Pros of Window ACs:

  • Lower cost to purchase
  • Relatively easy to install and maintain
  • Do not take up your floor space
  • Good for one or two rooms
  • Wide variety to choose from

Cons of Window ACs:

  • Often noisy during operation
  • Are visible from outside the home.
  • Obstructs the view from a window
  • Must be located close to a suitable electrical outlet
  • Not all windows support air conditioners
  • Must be removed or covered for the winter

Portable Air Conditioner

Portable air conditioners are similar to window air conditioners. They are a single unit with all its components enclosed inside. The difference is that it is a free-standing unit and can move from room to room. All it requires is a power outlet and access to a window where air can be exhausted.

Portable air conditioners are good for temporary space cooling or wherever it’s not practical to install a window or split air conditioner. Portable ACs can be single-hose that takes in air from inside a room and expel it outdoors. Or, dual-hose which pulls air from the outdoors using one hose, this air cools the compressor and is then exhausted outdoors from the other hose.

Since a portable unit sits indoors, its evaporator fan runs continuously. This is to remove the condensed moisture that is inside the unit.

Pros of portable ACs:

  • Quick and simple to set up
  • Can move easily around the house
  • Do not require permanent installation
  • Offers a solution for spot cooling
  • Easy to store when not needed

Disadvantages of portable ACs are:

  • Are noisy during operation
  • Has problems cooling larger rooms
  • Requires a window to be open, reducing efficiency
  • Takes up floor space
  • Must be removed each winter

Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioner

Ductless mini-split air conditioners are a great choice if you need efficient cooling, but want to avoid running ductwork throughout your home. It is also a good choice if you only need to cool a portion of your home.

This type of AC unit has two components: one indoor; the other outdoor.

The indoor unit is high up on the wall and includes a cooling coil, long blower and air filter. You install the outdoor unit on the outside wall of the room in which the indoor unit is located. It includes a compressor, condenser coil and the expansion coil or capillary tubing.

Since these indoor units are small and compact, each room gets its own unit. These units are much more efficient in energy consumption than other options available. However, installing a unit in each room of your house can be a bit pricey.

Pros of ductless mini-splits:

  • Quiet and efficient to run
  • Eliminates the need for ductwork
  • Each room has its own temperature control

Cons of ductless mini-splits:

  • Not enough for cooling large homes unless installed in each room
  • Can be expensive if needed for the whole house
  • Indoor unit is wall-mounted and visible

Central Air Conditioning System

This AC unit is best for your home if you have a large home and wish to cool and regulate humidity in multiple rooms at once. A central air conditioning unit uses a split system that regulates air through ducts installed in your home. Split systems use a condenser placed outside the home and a fan and coil system inside, with the refrigerant circulating between the two.

Pros of central AC system:

  • Sized to cool the entire house
  • Consistently regulates the environment throughout the home
  • Can be coupled with programmable thermostats for more efficiency

Cons of central AC system:

  • Consumes more energy resulting in higher energy bills.
  • Ductwork needs to be installed throughout the home

Which AC unit is best for you?

Now that you know the various types of AC units available, to make the decision for the best suited AC unit for your home, you need to consider:

  • Budget
  • Space requirements
  • Maintenance
  • Energy consumption

With so many A/C types to choose from, you will be able to find one that’s right for you and your home. Be sure to plan out what you need to have so your living environment stays comfortable all summer. Be sure to let us know if we can help you determine the right AC unit for you.