Summer’s getting close and, in Tennessee, our air conditioning has been running for at least a month. As the mercury rises, we’ll rely on AC more and more for comfort. But at some point, you might notice a drop-off in performance. It’s only natural to wonder, “Do I need a bigger AC unit?”
Knowing if you need a bigger one takes more observation. Ask yourself:
1. Does it Seem Like Your AC is Always Running?
There are a few factors that might cause your air conditioner to stay on. Abnormally hot weather, a drafty home, direct sun exposure, and a poorly sized system can all be causes. However, pay attention to conditions and ask your neighbors for input. If your system runs more than your neighbor’s, for instance, you know that it’s at least worth getting a professional opinion. Ask your AC tech to make a heat-load calculation so you can be sure your system is the right size.
In addition, make sure that your unit is clean and running well. That will help you rule out dirt buildup as a cause of inefficiency. An efficient, right-sized AC system should be able to cool quickly with breaks in between sessions. Those breaks will give the system a longer lifespan.
2. Is Your Utility Bill Higher Than It Should Be?
Compare your utility bill against the same month from a previous year in a similar home. Or, ask your neighbors what they pay for electricity (assuming of course their home is a similar size). Is it higher than it should be? Your system may be too small. (Note: oversized units are no good either. Learn why here.)
The benefit of replacing an undersized AC system is over the long term. You should see a drop in electricity use. You’ll also see an increased lifespan for the properly-sized unit. That lifespan will be even greater if you have your system inspected and cleaned at least once a year – but preferably twice, at the beginning of hot and cool weather.
So, how did you answer the question, “do I need a bigger AC unit?” If you think you may need a larger system, Just Call Dale’s. We’ll be happy to help you stay comfortable in the most efficient way possible.