Read This Before You Install Central AC
Here’s what you need to know before investing in a whole-house system
More than any other technology, air-conditioning has transformed how we live and work—and where we live and work. Yet as recently as 1993, only 68 percent of houses in the United States had some cooling equipment, either window air conditioners or central AC systems. Now, more than 87 percent of houses are so equipped. While the number with window AC units has shrunk overall, these appliances are still cooling significant numbers of homes, particularly in the Northeast, despite being noisy and obtrusive, and having limited efficiency and cooling capacity. Not to mention the twice-yearly struggle of putting them in and taking them out.
By comparison, central AC is a giant leap forward in convenience, quiet, and, most of all, comfort. Properly sized and installed, a split system—one with indoor and outdoor equipment—can keep an entire house nicely chilled on the hottest days, and do so far more efficiently than a battalion of window units.
On the following pages, we walk you through the factors that affect how these systems function. So whether you’re planning to deep-six the window ACs and install central air from scratch, or you’re investing in an HVAC upgrade, you’ll find loads of useful information to help you make smart decisions.
Click here to read more about what you need to know before you install a central air conditioning system…
By Thomas Baker of This Old House magazine