If it’s time to upgrade your air conditioner, you may want to learn the terminology to shop like an expert. By familiarizing yourself with the following terms, you’ll find it easier to pinpoint the perfect new upgrade.
- Refrigerant: The cooling liquid that carries heat from the air, R-22 refrigerant began being phased out in 2010 and replaced by more environmentally-friendly R-410A refrigerant.
- Refrigerant charge: The amount of refrigerant in the system, the charge should be checked by a technician as part of your annual maintenance plan to ensure it’s within the range recommended by the manufacturer.
- Coil: A system of tubing that refrigerant runs through, this is where heat transfers take place to make air conditioning possible.
- Evaporator coil: This is the interior portion of the system where the refrigerant is expanded to cool air for your home.
- Expansion valve: The main component of the indoor evaporator coil, the expansion valve lowers the temperature and pressure of the refrigerant so it expels cooled air into your home.
- Condenser coil: This is the outdoor portion of the system where heat is dispelled.
- Compressor: The main component of the outdoor condenser, the compressor raises the temperature and pressure of the refrigerant so it expels the heat picked up from indoor air.
- EER and SEER: Efficiency ratings given to central air conditioners. EER indicates how well the unit runs in the hottest conditions, while SEER is the efficiency averaged over the entire cooling season.
- Btu: British thermal unit, the measurement used to indicate the power of an A/C unit.
- Cooling load: When you upgrade your air conditioner, it should be sized properly based on the unit’s Btu/hour output. For example, you might find a two-ton system with a cooling output of 24,000 Btu/hour or a 2.5-ton 30,000-Btu/hour system. In order to choose the correct output, your technician needs to perform a load calculation to determine the cooling load, or amount of cooling capacity necessary. Sizing is critical for energy efficiency and comfort.
With these terms in the back of your mind, you’re ready to upgrade your air conditioner and enjoy heightened efficiency and home comfort. To learn more, or to browse through our A/C selection, please contact Blanton’s Heating & A/C in Fayetteville today.