When summer heat is at its worst, you’ll want the most reliable air conditioning available
When purchasing a new air conditioning system, there are many factors to consider. To help you make your decision easier, we have answers to some questions you may have.
What do good central air conditioning units have in common?
The best air conditioners are efficient, with multiple-stage or modulating inverter compressors and variable-speed fan motors. Units with these features create a dry, cool, and very comfortable indoor environment. When properly maintained they will provide steady, dependable performance year after year.
Good A/C systems are quiet, long-lasting, and low in service needs, so we recommend and use Ruud air conditioners. Ruud air conditioning units are designed to keep your home cool during the hottest Minnesota summer months, offering efficiency, durability, and customizable comfort.
Ruud’s advanced features include:
- Variable speed compressors
- Programmable thermostats
- High-efficiency filtration systems
- EcoNet smart sensor technology on some models
Their units also sport a grill design that minimizes air restriction for a quieter fan operation, and a powder-coated finish for more durability. Their removable louvered panels offer convenience for easy cleaning and maintenance, as well as added protection against hail and other elements that could damage the cooling coils.
These innovative features make Ruud’s air conditioners our choice for the best home air cooling solutions. Plus Ruud’s air conditioners come with a 10-year parts warranty with registration.
How to determine which air conditioners are the most energy-efficient
Air conditioner manufacturers are required by law to evaluate and rate their equipment according to its energy efficiency — similar to vehicle MPG ratings. A/C ratings are known as SEER, or “Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating” and EER or “Energy Efficiency Ratio.”
Introduced by the Department of Energy in 1987, a SEER rating refers to the average operating time and energy efficiency over the entire summer season. Comparatively, EER is only a snapshot of the efficiency of a system at one moment in time based on specific conditions. The testing conditions for the EER number require an outdoor temperature of 95 degrees.
Current standards have raised the minimum SEER in Minnesota from 13 to 14.
Some brands claim very high SEER ratings but fall very short in the more important EER rating. Ruud has several options that can give you the balance you may be looking for between cost and efficiency. For example, the UA18AZ series can achieve an impressive cooling efficiency of up to 19 SEER2 and 12 EER2.
The best air conditioners are efficient, operating on minimal electricity to help keep your utility bills down. When properly maintained they will provide steady, dependable performance year after year.
Making sure your A/C unit is the right size
An air conditioner that’s too small* won’t keep your home sufficiently cool. But an oversized system will cycle more than necessary, turning on and off, adding to your energy bill, and possibly putting undue strain on the compressor.
At Joel Smith Heating & Air Conditioning we can determine the optimum size air conditioner unit for your home you will need in order to cool your home properly. We make a careful study of your cooling requirements, taking into consideration factors like:
- your window dimensions
- floor space
- exposure to the sun
- the amount of shade in your yard
- average climate
- the insulation value in your walls, and the direction your home faces.
*Air conditioning systems are sized in tons, with one ton being equal to 12,000 BTUH, or British thermal unit (BTU) of heat removed per hour.
Are some air conditioners built better than others?
The compressor is the heart of an air conditioner’s condensing unit, working extra hard on hot days. Ruud’s condensing units excel in reliability, efficiency, and quiet operation, thanks to their highly advanced compressors.
In some air conditioners, the fan can also be a source of bothersome noise. Ruud units have a grill design that minimizes air restriction for a quieter fan operation. They also include louvered hail guards for added coils protection.
To meet the sustainability demands of the Department of Energy’s new efficiency restrictions and testing procedures, Ruud has introduced a new energy-efficient line of air conditioners, gas furnaces, and heat humps called Endeavor™ as a next-level "green" home environment solution with higher efficiencies, and more models that are ENERGY STAR® certified.
Of course, proper installation and maintenance of even the best air conditioners are critical to achieving optimal efficiency and performance. We can advise you on how you can give your air conditioner the TLC and maintenance it needs.
Do I need an air-source heat pump as well as an air conditioner?
No, you do not need both air conditioning and a heat pump. An air source heat pump does provide both heating and cooling, so there are many benefits to switching to one when the time comes to replace your existing cooling system.
Check out our heat pump page to learn more about their advantages and if a heat pump is a fit for your home. Or give us a call — we’ll be happy to assess and advise, as well as install a high-quality, cost-efficient air-source heat pump to keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter!
Remember that even the best air conditioners need a little TLC to keep them running at their optimal efficiency and performance. Check the Joel Smith HVAC FAQ for more tips on A/C care, or get in touch. We can advise you on how you can give your air conditioner the care and maintenance it needs.