Before having your new air conditioner installed, there are several things you can do to make sure the installation goes as smoothly as possible and that you get the most out of your new system. Here are three things you can do to get the best experience possible.
Have Your Ducts Inspected
An air conditioner is only as good as its ducts, and if you're getting a brand new air conditioner installed, it's a good time to make sure your ducts are in good shape. Ducts can deteriorate in several ways over time: insulation can fall away, gaps can open as sealant cracks and fades, and pests can even make holes as they try to get into your ducts. Old ducts will let more cool air escape before it gets into your home and will let dust in, which will both get inside your house and inside components in your air conditioner that should not get dusty, such as your blower wheel.
After a duct inspection, a professional can tell you whether they should be repaired or replaced and whether they need to be cleaned or not. Cleaning is usually reserved for when ducts are very dusty or if there has been some kind of pest infestation that could pose health risks. Having this done before your installation will make the actual installation process much faster and ensure you're ready to use your new air conditioner at its best efficiency from day one.
Confirm What's in Your Contract
Every installation will vary to some degree based on the needs of the homeowner. If you are ready to have a new air conditioner installed, you likely have some idea as to what you need done. This can include the installation, the removal of the old unit, duct repair or replacement, and any additional components such as thermostats. Before you finalize any contract, however, it helps to make sure that everything you need is explicitly stated in the contract so you know exactly what is happening and how much it will cost. If you aren't sure exactly what you need, you can take a look at what is typically included in installation contracts. Look for important details about payment schedules, warranties, and any guarantees.
Along with making sure everything you want is in there, it can also let you remove anything you don't want. If a contract by default comes with a new thermostat, but the one you currently have will work with your new air conditioner, you can have it removed. Contracts aren't set in stone, so if it's not exactly what you need, you can always negotiate.
Explore Some Add-Ons
An air conditioner's most essential parts are generally the unit itself and your duct system, but there are several other things you can add or change about your HVAC system to modernize it and make it more efficient and convenient.
One example is a smart thermostat. These have more functionality than a programmable thermostat; many models connect to WiFi, allow you to set the temperature from your phone or smart home device, give you weather updates, and learn schedules on their own based on use.
Another example is a zoning system, which lets you set different temperatures for different parts of your house. This works by using dampers inside the ducts to regulate airflow to different parts of the house. This can be a good energy-saving option for houses where some rooms remain empty often or for households with varying temperature needs. Closing vents to save energy can actually harm your HVAC system, so using a zoning system instead can give you the efficiency you want while putting less strain on your air conditioner.
If you aren't sure what your options are or what might best benefit your household, ask an installer like Bud's Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning & Electric what they have available and how they can help you.