Most people upgrade to high-efficiency air conditioners for increased energy savings. If you’re hanging on to an A/C manufactured before 2006, then simply by moving up to a new high-efficiency model, you’ll advance from a SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) of 10 to a unit rated at least 14. This translates into energy savings of more than 30 percent compared to the old unit. But high-efficiency air conditioners go beyond the bottom line of efficiency to offer perks and technology that boost comfort and convenience in addition to saving money. Not every make and model offers every potential advantage, but here are a few of the reasons homeowners are taking the step up to higher efficiency:
Two-stage cooling. A single-stage compressor in a standard unit runs at full output continuously. A two-stage high-efficiency compressor operates at full output only when the cooling load in your home demands it—about 20 percent of the time. The rest of the time it automatically shifts into reduced output mode, saving energy while cooling more consistently and reducing noise.
Fan-only operation. To use the air circulation power of your standard A/C, you have to run the energy-consuming, noisy compressor, too. High-efficiency air conditioners offer the option to run the blower fan alone and circulate cool nighttime and early morning air without starting the compressor.
Peace and quiet. Standard single-stage units disrupt your household peace and can even disturb neighbors. High-efficiency A/C with two-stage cooling offers an array of sound-dampening technology to reduce noise levels to below 69 decibels, up to 20 times quieter than standard units.
Friendly refrigerant. Ever worry that your air conditioner may need refrigerant that’s unavailable—or only at black market prices? If your standard A/C uses R22A refrigerant, you should. Now being phased out for environmental reasons, spot shortages of R22A have occurred and costs have multiplied. Fortunately, new high-efficiency air conditioners utilize R410A, an environmentally-friendly replacement available at stable prices.
With the largest full-service HVAC fleet in Tulsa, Air Assurance specializes in residential and commercial comfort solutions. Contact us for more information on the benefits and bonuses of upgrading to a high-efficiency air conditioner.Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Image courtesy of Shutterstock