Phoenix is one of the hottest places in the country and if there’s anywhere that people benefit from high-efficiency air conditioning, this is the place. The minimum efficiency standard for central air conditioners stands at 13 SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio). A/C systems with higher SEER ratings may have advanced features that provide greater energy efficiency like:
- Dual-speed compressors. A dual-speed compressor runs at different speeds, depending on the need for cooling. You save money on electricity during the spring and fall, or when temperatures fall after sunset.
- Electronically commutated motors (ECMs). Also called variable-speed motors, these are especially good for cooling homes in this climate because they use a fraction of the electricity that a single-speed motor uses. These motors are also quieter and remove more humidity from your home during the monsoon since they run more slowly. If your condenser is located near a bedroom window, a system with an ECM in the condenser helps cut down on the noise.
- Thermal expansion valve (TXV). These function like dual-speed compressors. The valve opens wider during hot weather, so the compressor sends more refrigerant into the air handler’s evaporator coil.
These features for high-efficiency air conditioning won’t raise the SEER, but do help lower your electric bill and provide more indoor comfort.
- Fan-delay switch. This switch lets the air handler run a few minutes longer than the condenser, which circulates all the cooled air left inside the ducts.
- Filter sensor. This feature tells you when it’s time to check or clean your air handler’s filter. A dirty filter obstructs the flow of air through the air handler, raises the cost of cooling and can eventually cause system failure.
Regardless of the features a high-efficiency air conditioner offers, purchasing a new one with a 13 SEER rating can lower your energy consumption by as much as 30 percent, compared to an older 10 SEER system. Since we cool our homes for almost seven months of the year, these high-efficiency air conditioners make sense. If you’d like to learn more, contact us at Wolff Mechanical.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about high-efficiency air conditioning systems and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Wolff Mechanical services the Phoenix Valley area in Arizona. Visit our website to see our special offers and get started today!