Should You Buy a Larger AC?
If your current AC unit is not doing a good job in cooling your home, you might assume you need a bigger one. Well, you may be right, but you may also be wrong. While it is true that a larger AC has more power and ability to keep a house cool, it is not necessarily better. This is because in many cases, the real problem may be due to leaks, inadequate maintenance, or lack of insulation.
A bigger unit for cooling warm spaces
Heat & cooling experts in Modesto, CA note that one main problem with a larger unit is that it causes uneven temperatures. If the place where your thermostat is located gets cool enough, but not so much in other rooms, don’t just assume that your unit is undersized. What you need to do is to find ways to get more cool air in areas where it is lacking. You can do this by:
- Finding and sealing air leaks (to stop heat from getting in)
- Adding or improving insulation
- Improving your duct system
- Having your unit professionally checked or serviced
When the AC is not doing what it’s supposed to do
Do take note that a correctly sized air conditioner is supposed to operate efficiently and keep you cool even at the hottest time of the day. If the one you are using is doing the otherwise, however, you may need a larger AC. Then again, it is advisable to have your unit and house checked before making a final decision.
The need to cool the house quicker
If you want to cool down your house faster when you get from work, switching to a larger unit is not the answer. A much better move is to use a programmable or a Wi-Fi-enabled thermostat. The former lets you set a schedule for the thermostat to operate by while the latter allows you have a total control over the schedule of your heating and cooling, as well as make changes using a compatible smart device.
A bigger unit is not necessarily better
Apart from costing more money to buy and run, oversized units are less energy efficient. They are also likely to turn on and off constantly (short cycle), which puts more wear and tear to the unit. This then causes more breakdowns, leading to higher repair bills, shorter life, and wasted energy and money. This is not an issue with a properly sized unit, which is supposed to run efficiently and last longer.
Other problems associated with an oversized AC include:
- Poor air distribution (leading to hot rooms and uneven temperatures)
- Higher duct pressure (causing more noise and leakage)
- Increased dust mites and mold growth (triggering allergy symptoms)
- Higher humidity during summer (the air will feel cold and clammy)
- Higher electric bills (especially because of excessive cycling)
Doing your homework can help you make a sound decision, as well as finding a reliable contractor or heating and cooling company. Be wary of those who try to encourage (or force) you into buying a larger AC, without considering the size of your home and other important factors. The right contractor will always use correct sizing procedures to determine which unit is right for you.