Tips for When You're Buying an Air ConditionerIf you plan to buy a new air conditioner for your home this spring, don’t go unprepared. A variety of pitfalls can leave you with a central A/C that wastes energy, doesn’t properly cool your home, and requires frequent repairs.

Follow these tips for buying the right air conditioner:

  • Choose an HVAC outfit with a reputation for high-quality cooling and heating systems and professional, reliable service.
  • Make your new air conditioner. is correctly sized for your home. An A/C that’s either too big or too small for your particular house will waste energy and under-perform, both in regard to cooling and humidity control. It also may experience more breakdowns. Before recommending a certain capacity air conditioner, the contractor should perform a cooling load calculation on your home, taking into account a long list of factors in addition to its size and layout.
  • Ask the contractor what advanced features are available for their central A/C systems. A variable-speed blower motor (if your system isn’t going to use your furnace blower) is a good idea, as is a multi-stage condenser. Otherwise, your system will run at just one speed, full-go, which wastes energy, stresses parts, and may result in uneven cooling.
  • The contractor also should review your options for energy efficiency in a new air conditioner. High-efficiency A/Cs (with higher SEER ratings) use less electricity to produce cooling. While they cost more at purchase, they’ll be cheaper to operate from month to month. In Michigan, with its relatively short cooling seasons, however, a high-efficiency A/C will take longer to accumulate energy savings.
  • Make sure you know about available rebates or tax credits from the manufacturer, government, electric utility or HVAC business.
  • Discuss with the A/C dealer available maintenance contracts. Homeowners who invest in a maintenance contract are more likely to keep up with maintaining their central air conditioner. Regular professional maintenance, along with simple homeowner maintenance, will ensure continuing energy efficiency and performance, as well as a longer service life.

To discuss buying a new air conditioner for your Grand Traverse County home, please contact us at Team Bob Heating Cooling Plumbing.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Traverse City, Michigan and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about air conditioners and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 231-714-6196.

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