Purchasing a High-Efficiency Air Conditioner
When upgrading to a newer cooling system, there are many reasons you might want to consider a high-efficiency unit. For one thing, while a high-efficiency air conditioner might cost more upfront, you could end up saving that and more, in the long run, thanks to lower energy bills.
You can compare air conditioner efficiency by looking at the SEER rating, which measures cooling efficiency. SEER stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio, and it’s calculated by dividing the air conditioner’s total summer cooling output by the energy used over that same cooling season.
The higher the SEER number, the more efficient the air conditioner will be, and potentially the more you’ll save on energy bills. Newer air conditioners typically have a SEER rating between 13 and 21, but some are even higher than that.
Finding the Most Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
When efficiency is a major concern, there are lots of special air conditioner features you can look for that will guarantee better energy use and lower utility bills. One of the most important things to look for is the SEER rating, but you can also check the EnerGuide label and look for the ENERGY STAR logo.
EnerGuide is a program launched by the Canadian government to help consumers identify and compare efficiency ratings for HVAC systems, appliances, electronics, and other devices. The EnerGuide label will tell you an air conditioner’s annual energy consumption and show you how a particular model stands up against others in its class. Unfortunately, EnerGuide labelling is voluntary for central air conditioners, so you may not always be able to rely on this as a resource.
ENERGY STAR is a voluntary labelling program that was created by the Environmental Protection Agency in America. Any air conditioner that bears the ENERGY STAR logo has been tested and guaranteed to meet high-efficiency standards.
There are also many advanced features and new technologies that improve the efficiency of modern air conditioners, and these include:
- Larger coil
- Two-stage or variable-speed compressor
- Variable-speed fan
- A filter indicator light (for cleaning)
- Easily accessible filter
Air Conditioner Warranties
Most air conditioner manufacturers back their products with warranties, but warranties can range anywhere from standard to excellent. It’s good to pay attention to what kind of coverage a potential cooling system has because with the right warranty you could end up saving a lot on repairs and labour costs should something go wrong with your air conditioner down the road.
A standard air conditioner warranty might include a one-year parts warranty, but most manufacturers also offer at least a five-year warranty that covers the compressor and coil. The compressor warranty is typically the one you’ll want to note because replacing a compressor is one of the most expensive air conditioner repairs.
Important Installation Information
Installing an air conditioner is no easy feat, and it’s typically something you’ll want to leave to the professionals. In fact, improper installation is one of the most common causes of air conditioner problems so you can guarantee your comfort and the longevity of your cooling system by calling a licensed and certified technician to deal with the installation.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that HVAC companies will often offer an installation guarantee that could include a labour warranty and additional maintenance calls. Finally, having your air conditioner installed will ensure you have the right size unit for your needs, and this means you won’t spend too much trying to cool your home or overspend on an oversized air conditioner.
Available Rebates and Deals
Unfortuantely the Save On Energy rebates have been discontinued, however you can see the HVAC latest rebates here.
Although the criteria will vary by rebate, a few of the common eligibility criteria include:
- You must buy a central air conditioner
- The unit must have ENERGY STAR certification
- The SEER rating must be at least 18
- The indoor coil must qualify
- You must buy and install the unit through a participating contractor
Buying a new air conditioner is an investment, and even if you opt for a low-tier model from an economy brand, you will likely still have to spend at least $1,000 after installation. Fortunately, many HVAC manufacturers offer financing options that might include leases, payment deferrals, or monthly payment programs. By taking advantage of one of these options, you might be able to afford a higher-quality and higher-efficiency air conditioner, and this could save you money in the long run on things like energy bills and maintenance.
Popular Air Conditioner Brands in Markham
There are plenty of HVAC manufacturers out there building durable, reliable, and efficient cooling systems, and some of the most popular brands in Markham include:
- American Standard
Markham is a mid-sized city that lies about 30 kilometres northeast of Toronto, and that makes up part of the Greater Toronto Area. The warmest months in Markham are June, July, and August, and average daytime highs can hit close to 30 C throughout July. Because of nearby Lake Ontario, Markham can get humid and sticky throughout the summer, especially in June and at the end of summer, so an air conditioner with good humidity control is recommended for this climate.