Do you remember the discomfort you felt last summer? When our sub-tropical climate brought us hot, sticky summer days and restless nights? If so, it’s time to start thinking about how you can change your home’s climate this year and start enjoying the comfort and health benefits of air conditioning. With the dizzying selection of residential air conditioners, it can seem a little overwhelming at first. So let’s take a look at some of the basics that you are going to want to consider.
Regardless of the type of air conditioning system you choose, a primary consideration is matching the size and capacity of the air conditioner with all of the space that you want to cool. Choosing a system that is too big and powerful is a waste of money and energy and can even make your room feel a little damp instead of providing the cool and refreshing climate that you want. On the other hand, a unit that is too small will overwork the air conditioner and will not produce the cooling effect that you desire. The cooling capacity of air conditioners is measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units). The higher the BTU value, the more cooling capacity the air conditioner has.
Thankfully, today’s air conditioning systems are much more efficient than they have ever been in the past. The current star rating system that is used to measure their efficiency was established when the energy labelling standards went into effect on April 1st, 2010. The rating is determined by the Annual Energy Efficiency Ratio (AEER) for cooling and the Annual Coefficient of Performance (ACOP) for heating. Air conditioners with high ratings save you money, use less energy and are more environmentally friendly.
Air conditioner cassette systems are generally used when there is not enough roof space for a ducted system. In the past, they were mainly suited to commercial applications, however new technical designs have created a unit with a much thinner profile and therefore they are now also being installed in residential situations.
Wall Mounted Split Systems
Split system air conditioning units are split into two parts, hence the term “split” system. They include an indoor air handling unit and an outdoor compressor unit. Nowadays, most split systems are also reverse cycle, which means they can both cool and heat rooms. In fact, the heating mode of these air conditioner units is generally regarded as one of the most cost efficient forms of heating available. Split systems are perfect for single room and cost efficient solutions, where the outdoor unit can be positioned nearby.
Multi Head Split Systems
This residential air conditioning technology allows you to have a number of individually controlled indoor units all running off of one outdoor compressor unit. This is typically not the most cost effective solution due to additional engineering requirements and the fact that you have to have an individual indoor unit for each room that you want to cool. However they can be the perfect solution if your outdoor space is limited and you don’t have adequate space for a ducted system.
Ducted air conditioning systems are the ‘top of the range’ solution and allow for the distribution of cool and warm air all around the house at the touch of a button. These ducted air conditioning systems contain a number of components, such as the air handling unit, the outdoor compressor and a series of ducts with vents in each room. To enhance this air conditioning solution even more, you can add a zone control system that will allow you to control the air flow to each room individually. This will provide you with the ability to distribute the conditioned air where you want it, when you want it. Ducted air conditioning systems also provide you with the greatest flexibility in the positioning of the outdoor compressor.
So with this information in mind you will be a lot more knowledgeable when you meet with a professional to design the perfect air conditioning solution for your home. Getting a professionally designed and installed residential air conditioner will ensure that you and your family can enjoy our incredible summers without all of the discomfort that you may have experienced in the past.