For much of the rest of the country, thinking about installing central air conditioning during mid-February sounds a bit nutty. But here in Southern California’s desert communities, it’s always a good time to investigate options for better cooling. Especially when that better cooling also comes with energy-saving performance!
Every year, air conditioning technology advances farther. New ACs in general use less power than older ones, thanks in part to the development of thinner aluminum refrigerant coils that helps them absorb heat faster and more effectively before. The SEER rating of air conditioners (a measure of how much cooling a system produces compared to the electricity it draws) is risen significantly, and you should aim to find a system with a SEER rating of 14.5 of higher, which is the requirement for a system to earnt the ENERGY STAR label.
Among the various types of air conditioners available, there are some special high-efficiency models that can score 18 SEER and above. These air conditioners are variable-speed models. What this means is that the blower fan on the AC can operate at different power levels. The conventional AC has a fan that is simply “on” or “off”; when running, it runs at top capacity, and that’s not always the most effective use of energy. A variable-speed air conditioner can run at a lower capacity for the fan, and it will automatically adjust itself to match the comfort needs of the house. Nearly 80% of the time, the air conditioner will run at the lower speed, and this mean a significant reduction in energy consumption.
Something to keep in mind: a high-efficiency rating doesn’t automatically mean a system that’s better for your home. A system with a high SEER rating may not effectively cool your house. Talk to professional installers before making a decision about your new AC.
Russell’s Heating & Air Conditioning will guide you toward the best air conditioning installation for your Palm Desert, CA home.