HVAC Hacks: Tips for Novices and New Homeowners

Answers to 4 First Time AC Installation Questions

Putting in an air conditioner for the first time in an existing home can be a bit challenging, since the infrastructure for a cooling system likely isn't present. The following can help answer some of the questions you may have. 

1. Is There an Ideal Season for AC Installation?

If you have never had an AC, you may not be aware of the seasonal fluctuations when it comes to AC work. Generally, HVAC technicians are busiest in the summer and choices on new AC units may not be as readily available due to high demand. Spring is the ideal time to install a new AC. Not only will the installation service have the time to focus fully on the job, you will have your pick of available units.

2. What If There Are No Ducts In the House?

 A first-time installation in an older home may mean there are no dedicated ducts for an AC system. If the home has central heat, then your installer can make a few alterations to the heating duct system so that it will also work with the AC. For homes with no existing ducts, there are two main options. You can have ductwork installed if there is sufficient ceiling and flooring space. Otherwise, there are ductless systems available that are efficient and effective.

3. Can One Unit Cool a Multi-Level Home?

It depends on the type of AC you choose. If you are putting in central AC, then a single unit that is sized properly to the square footage and layout of the home should be sufficient. For ductless systems, there will need to be one or more air handlers installed on each floor, and you will also likely need an additional condenser unit installed outside for each level of the home. 

4. How Much Will AC Increase My Energy Bill?

There are many variables that play into the cost of running an AC system. These include the rates in your areas, the size of the unit, the energy efficiency of your windows and doors, your home's insulation, and the efficiency of the AC unit itself. Fortunately, you can get a general guideline on energy cost by checking the paperwork for each unit, which will include an average cost per hour estimate. This may not be completely accurate due to the above factors, but it will provide a ballpark estimate.

Contact an HVAC installation service if you have further questions about a first time AC installation.