Your home's central air conditioner is an investment in your comfort and also in your home itself; the central air will remove humidity as well as heat so your home is less likely to have moisture buildup that can lead to mold and mildew behind the walls, in the carpeting, and so on. However, a central air conditioner can be a bit expensive for most homeowners to run, which is why it's important to understand your options for such a unit before you shop. Note a few features to look for so you find a central air conditioner that is energy efficient and which might be less expensive to operate on those warm sunny days.
The larger the coils for the unit that sits outside your home, the more efficiently the unit will transfer or remove heat from the air that it is cooling. In turn, the unit may need to run less often or for a shorter time in order to create cool air.
Automatic delay fan switch
This type of switch or feature allows the central air conditioner to actually shut down the cooling unit but still run the fan before it reaches the temperature you've set on the thermostat. By continuing to circulate the air in your home that's just been cooled, the unit will continue to cool your home and the temperature will continue to drop, but the air conditioner will use less electricity by operating just the fan and not the condenser.
Filter indicator light
Your central air conditioner pushes air through the furnace of the home and, in turn, uses the furnace filter to filter out dust, pet hair and dander, and other such debris that can clog the unit and make it work harder than it should. If you neglect to change the filter regularly, the unit works harder. By having an indicator light telling you when the filter needs changing, your unit can run optimally and use less energy.
A central air conditioner should work with a zone thermostat for larger homes especially. This allows you to set different temperatures in different zones of the home, or shut it off in those areas altogether. This keeps you from using the central unit to cool the upstairs bedrooms during the day, when you're only occupying the downstairs living room. You can also adjust the temperature according to each person's preferences when they are in different rooms, so you're not using energy to make one room cooler than necessary.
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