Summer is progressing right along, and with it so are warmer temperatures. Is your air conditioner up to the task? If you’re considering a new system this time of the year, chances are it’s a decision you’re a bit rushed on. We urge you however, to not make this decision in haste. Choosing a new air conditioner too quickly could leave you with an ineffective and inefficient air conditioner.
For example, the first instinct of many homeowners is to buy the largest, most powerful AC system on the market, especially if they’ve spent previous summers with an AC that didn’t seem powerful enough. But the fact of the matter is, bigger is not always better. When it comes to your cooling system, size and power do matter, but perhaps not the way you thing. Read on as we explain!
The Problem with an Underpowered Air Conditioner
As you probably know, an air conditioner that’s too small–or rather, underpowered–for your home won’t be able to keep up with your cooling demands. This will force the cooling system and essentially work harder than it should have to in order to do its job, and as a result, you can expect a rise in energy costs.
Additionally, an underpowered system won’t be able to keep your home as comfortable as you’d like it to. During one of our sweltering summer days, you can definitely see why this would be a problem. It’s better to make sure that you have a properly sized air conditioner professionally installed right from the beginning.
The Problem with an Overpowered Air Conditioner
This is the situation we were talking about above–bigger is not necessarily better. You may think this is the case, but it’s actually pretty inefficient. This is because optimal AC efficiency happens through continued operation and regular cycles or intervals.
When an air conditioning system is too big for the home, your desired temperature will be reached too quickly. This might not seem like a problem, but what’s happening is that your air conditioner is never completing a full cooling cycle. This is a problem known as short-cycling.
Short-cycling is both a problem in itself and the cause of further problems–not something you ever want to deal with. What happens is that your air conditioner cycles on, cools off the room too quickly, then cycles back off faster than it should. Your air conditioner uses the most energy cycling on, therefore this is very inefficient.
Plus, this accelerates wear and tear. While a properly installed and well-cared for air conditioner should last you about 10-15 years, a short-cycling air conditioner may not even make it to a decade. Short-cycling will create a domino effect where other components start wearing down and this will shorten the system’s lifespan.
Not only will you find yourself paying more for service each month with a short-cycling air conditioner, but you’ll find yourself paying for a replacement far sooner than you should have to!