Athough summer is beginning to wane, there are still plenty of hot days left before it really cools off. If your AC system is on its last legs, now may be the time to explore your options and get AC replacement-ready. That way, if your unit decides to call it a day and temps are still in the high 80's or 90's, you'll know exactly what you want to replace it with. Air conditioning installation is expensive, so it’s a good idea to have a complete understanding of what is available so you can make the best decision for your indoor comfort and budget. Here's a rundown on the latest and greatest air conditioner features, all of which will save on energy costs and keep you cool as a cucumber.
Ductless Air Conditioners
Also called split systems and mini splits, ductless air conditioners can cool one room or a whole house. Split systems have an outdoor unit and one or more indoor units. The indoor units can be mounted on the wall, floor or ceiling, and each unit has its own thermostat. Ductless air conditioners are generally more efficient than ducted systems because they don't rely on ductwork. A ductless AC installation can usually be completed in a few hours.
This feature keeps cooling costs low and indoor comfort high. The compressor in traditional air conditioners is an all-or-nothing proposition. It's either running at full speed or not at all. With inverter technology, the compressor will run only enough to maintain the desired temperature.
Unlike the air conditioners of yesteryear, today's cooling systems offer a multitude of operational features for indoor comfort that can't be beat:
- In dry mode, the air conditioner cools your home just slightly while it removes humidity from the air.
- You can have a remote control thermostat with digital display and touchpad for every indoor unit in your house. You can customize your home's comfort system right down to the last detail.
- Some systems automatically convert to sleep mode when you go to bed. The result? Energy is conserved but you'll still feel comfortable while you sleep.
- The restart delay feature prevents the air conditioner from turning back on too soon after being turned off.
- You can configure programmable electronic thermostats with digital sensors to automatically adjust temperatures at different times of the day and on different days of the week. This can cut your energy costs considerably.
DREDs (Demand Response Enabling Devices)
This is a brand new "smart" feature that allows energy companies to control AC usage during peak periods. This, in turn, reduces the strain on your air conditioner and on the grid. The savings can be considerable, and the drop in energy will not significantly affect your indoor comfort or your cooling system's performance. Participation requires only that a signal receiver is installed by the power company into a DRED-enabled air conditioner. Once hooked up, the energy company can limit energy consumption during periods of heavy demand. To encourage participation, energy companies are providing incentives for those who purchase DRED-enabled air conditioners.
Air conditioners get more efficient by the minute. To assess air conditioner efficiency, look for the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). The SEER of an air conditioner tells you how efficient that AC is. The higher the SEER, the more efficient the product, and the more you'll save on energy bills. The minimum SEER for ductless split system air conditioners is 14, but the SEER of a unit can be as high as 26.
Swapping out your old air conditioner for a high-efficiency replacement might be pricey, but you'll start to recoup your investment immediately. A Carrier air conditioning installation will keep you cool for less, even in the intense Auburn, Opelika, Phenix City and surrounding communities’ heat and humidity. Your new air conditioner may also qualify for a tax credit from the IRS and for state and utility company incentives for those who install energy-efficient products. To learn more about how much you could save on cooling costs with a high-efficiency Carrier conditioning installation, give us a call at (334) 366-9237.