What Size Air Conditioner Do I Need?

Identify all the things you would like to improve on from your current system. Some contractors will ask you these questions, but some may not. If you educate yourself on what you'd like your system to do for your home, you will be happier in the long run.

Expert Advice for Selecting the Best HVAC System.

There are two important considerations when selecting the system to best fit your needs:

Hire a skilled contractor. With central heating and air, product performance and reliability greatly depend on the contractor's ability to design and install a system suited for your home.
Check out our tips on how to select the right contractor.

Think about what you want. Because heating and cooling purchases don't happen very often, you may not be up to speed on the latest solutions for common indoor problems. Now's the time to speak up if you'd like to save energy, lower utility costs, correct hot and cold spots or fix a host of other problems.

A heating and air purchase is a 16-20 year commitment, so now is the time to get the system that will satisfy your family's needs. You can do this by reviewing the questions below.

Do you want to lower your energy bills?

  • If you experience high gas bills in the winter, ask about 95% AFUE furnaces or higher.
  • If you experience high electric bills in the summer, ask about 15 SEER or higher.

Would you like to reduce the amount of hot and cold spots in your home?

  • If you experience hot/cold spots predominately during mild temperature days, ask about multi-stage options.
  • Basic two-stage systems use two stages of heating or cooling to give better comfort during mild temperature days.
  • Better two-stage systems use two stages of heating and cooling plus a variable-speed blower to provide more even temperature and fresher air.
  • The best is a modulating system that offers a multitude of stages to provide the most precise temperature control and comfort. Not all manufacturers have indoor and outdoor modulating systems like Westinghouse.

Do you want to control temperature by room?

  • Zoning systems are designed to allow the homeowner to control the temperature by room. You can zone as little as two areas (like an upstairs and downstairs), or you can zone up to eight. The ability to zone your home, and the approach to zoning, may vary depending on your home layout and the contractor's skill.

Does anyone in your family have allergies?

Is it too humid in your home?

Does it get too dry in the home?

Is dust a problem in your home?

Do you have pets and the resulting dust and dander?

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