What to expect with today’s advanced Air Conditioning Systems?

Today’s air conditioners are quiet, reliable, and efficient. Also, many AC units have advanced technology to improve comfort in the home. Obviously, the main purpose of an air conditioning system is to condition the indoor air. This includes the removal of heat and humidity. It also includes the filtration of airborne particles. The proper removal of humidity and the removal of heat are critical for a comfortable indoor environment.

As of 2018, the minimum efficiency standard for air conditioners in our area is 14 SEER. Every few years the minimum efficiency is raised. Most systems we replace are from the 6-12 SEER range. Give us a call today to discuss the benefits and pricing of a new air conditioner for your home.

What does SEER mean?

SEER stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio. All central air conditioners have a SEER rating. SEER rating measures an AC unit or heat pump systems cooling efficiency. You can think of a SEER rating like MPG fuel efficiency for a car. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient the AC unit or heat pump.

How efficient are today’s AC units?

The minimum efficiency allowed by law in our area is 14 SEER. Most new air conditioners installed today are 14-20 SEER. There are ductless air conditioners that can achieve up to 42 SEER. Each increase in SEER number can save up to 6-8% on your cooling costs. Many new systems also have a multi-stage compressor. A system with a multi-stage compressor can run at a lower speed when it is not as hot outside. This feature dramatically improves the energy efficiency of an air conditioner. If you need a new a conditioner, Short Pump Heating and Air will always help you find the air conditioning system that fits your home and your budget.

Features that can help improve comfort and efficiency:

  • Fully communicating systems
  • Variable speed fans
  • Multi-stage compressors

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What are the different types of Air Conditioning Systems

In the Richmond, VA area, the vast majority of homes have “split system” air conditioners. Packaged air conditioners and ductless AC systems are in many homes locally, but are not as common as more traditional split systems.

Split AC Systems:

  • Compressor or “condensing unit” is located outdoors
  • Uses copper refrigerant piping to connect condenser to the evaporator
  • Evaporators are located indoors
  • Furnace or air handler located indoors
  • Uses a duct system connected to the air handler or furnace to distribute the air

Packaged central air conditioners:

  • Compressor, condenser, and an evaporator all located in a cabinet outdoors
  • Every part of the system is enclosed in the one cabinet
  • Often includes electric heating coils or natural gas furnace in the package unit
  • Uses a duct system connected to the package A/C to distribute the air

Ductless AC unit or “mini-split”

  • Operates like a split system but does not use ductwork
  • The air handler is usually mounted on a wall
  • The most efficient way to cool your home
  • Cool air blows directly out of the air handler without the use of ductwork

What size AC unit do you need for your home?

An appropriately sized air conditioner is the most critical factor. Correctly sizing an AC unit creates comfort and efficiency. If your A/C unit is too big for your house, it will not remove humidity. If your A/C is too small for your home, it will not be able to keep the home cool.

Factors impact the size of your AC system:

  • Climate
  • Size of house
  • Windows
  • Insulation
  • Age of house
  • Also, hundreds of others

We’re trained on Manual J load calculations. Manual J load calculations are the industry standard for properly sizing a heating or cooling system. If you need a new air conditioner, we will always discuss the size of your system and what options are available.

What are BTU’s

If you are researching new air conditioners, you probably have seen or heard the words “tonnage” or “BTU” many times. They relate to the cooling capacity of the air conditioner. BTU is an acronym for British Thermal unit. It is a measurement of the amount of heat that can be removed from a room per hour.. The size of an air conditioning system is usually referred to as “tonnage.” A 2 ton or 3 ton air conditioning system is a common residential system size. Each ton is equal to 12,000 BTUs. The higher the BTU or tonnage, the more cooling capacity of the air conditioner.

Do I need new ductwork?

The duct system is a critical part of your overall HVAC system. It delivers the air to your home. A poor duct system can cause comfort issues in the house and will cause the system to lose efficiency. A properly designed and sealed duct system is essential. Without it, it’s tough for an air conditioner to do its job. We will always check your duct system if you need a new air conditioner. We will give recommendations on ways to improve your current duct system. We can also provide you with pricing on replacing the entire duct system.

What is the best brand of Air Conditioner?

We install several different brands of air conditioners. The majority of the systems we install are Carrier brand equipment. We’re trained on all types of Carrier systems. We receive great support on the Carrier products and robust warranty coverage. Carrier has a very strong presence in the Richmond, VA area. Thinking of a new air conditioner, we’re happy to discuss the pros and cons of all AC brands that we install and service.

Indoor Air Quality

Indoor Air Quality is a topic of increasing concern. The air in most homes is 2-5 times more polluted than outdoor air. We offer many products to help improve your indoor air quality. Our products help alleviate dust, odors, and allergy symptoms. Most indoor air quality products integrate into your air conditioning system. We install many whole zone media air filtration systems. We also install Ultra Violet lights, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, and several other products. Many products will help kill airborne viruses and bacteria in your air. Do you have questions about installing air quality components into an existing air conditioner or a new air conditioning system? We can help!

Why might you need AC maintenance and servicing?

Many AC components need routine maintenance for your AC system to function correctly. Neglecting the necessary maintenance can reduce efficiency, cooling capacity, and increase breakdown frequency. A dirty air conditioner is an inefficient air conditioner. We service thousands of AC systems in Richmond, VA as part of our preventative maintenance plan. Our office will gladly explain our air conditioning maintenance options and pricing.

Do you provide Air Conditioning Repair?

We repair all makes and models of residential air conditioning systems. Our service technicians have experience fixing AC brands found in central Virginia. We stock the most common replacement parts on our trucks.

We provide fair and upfront pricing.

Before any work is done to repair the system, we inform you of the cost. All pricing and options are discussed upfront. Most air conditioning repairs can be completed in one trip to the home. If your air conditioner is not working, give us a call to schedule a repair.

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