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Your High-Efficiency Air Conditioner: Installation Factors That Can Help or Hinder Performance

ChoosiClimate Control 05.28.2013ng a properly sized, high-efficiency air conditioner, with a high SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio), is only the first step to superior home comfort combined with lower energy costs. Expert installation will make or break the actual performance efficiency you get from your system. It pays to have an HVAC contractor on your side as you make this important home comfort investment. Professional A/C selection and installation must include:

Calculating correct sizing

Simply buying a new cooling system – the same size you currently have – is usually a mistake. The formula to determine A/C sizing in complex and may have been miscalculated for your existing system. In addition, your Western Colorado home has likely become more tightly sealed/better insulated over the years. Your load calculation and cooling needs will have changed. A new high-efficiency air conditioner that is too large or too small won’t cool your home evenly, but will waste energy and compromise your family’s comfort.

An expert HVAC contractor determines the system size/capacity that your home requires using a precise method. The calculation involves details unique to your house: the construction of your home, the overall size, the layout, the number of residents and much more.

Ensuring proper airflow

Adequate airflow throughout your home means about 400 cfm (cubic feet per minute) per ton of A/C capacity. Ensuring correct airflow may include:

  • Enlarging ducts to accommodate the new system.
  • Refining/retrofitting the duct layout to eliminate airflow restriction.
  • Adding supply or return registers/grilles to rooms as needed to balance airflow.
  • Selecting compatible equipment components for greatest efficiency.

Checking refrigerant charge

Quality installation includes carefully measuring refrigerant pressure and adjusting to factory specs. Both under-charging and over-charging are common. Either situation lowers energy efficiency, shortens system life and inhibits performance.

Ensuring well-sealed ductwork

Expert installation includes checking ducts for leakage and sealing ductwork if needed. According to energy research non-profit Advanced Energy, 35 percent of cooling capacity is lost from leaking ducts and from un-insulated/poorly insulated duct systems.

Need a new high-efficiency air conditioner? Please contact us at Climate Control Company for guidance. Visit our website to learn more or just give us a call.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Aspen, Vail and the surrounding Western slope communities in Colorado about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about high efficiency air conditioners and other HVAC topics, please visit our website.     

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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