Everyone living in Arizona understands the importance of having a working air conditioning. Having an AC that works is vital to surviving in this desert heat. If you are buying a home, it is vital that the home inspection company you choose does a complete inspection of your air conditioning units
If you are buying a home built prior to January 2006, you should invest in a home warranty package that covers your air conditioning units and find one that include a 13 SEER modification option. This is important for two reasons.
- The Department of Energy (DOE) mandated that all air conditioners manufactured and installed in the United States after January 2006 be 13 SEER. This is a 30% increase in efficiency over the current 10 SEER standard set back in 1992.
- As of January 2010 manufactures of air conditioners are prohibited from using R-22. The new environmentally friendly R-410A is now standard. This means if your compressor goes bad, you will have to get the new R-410A that cost significantly more than the R-22. Make sure your home warranty has this coverage available to purchase.
SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It is a measure of how efficient your air conditioning unit is. The higher the SEER rating the more energy efficient your air conditioning is. Having a higher SEER will result in lower energy costs.
If you have an air conditioner that is 10 years or older you should think about replacing the unit. Most air conditioners in Arizona are not properly maintained. Because of this the SEER rating of the AC unit could be below a 10.
The best time to maintain your air conditioning unit is in the fall/winter. This is due to HVAC companies are slower during this period. This is wonderful for the homeowner because they the cost can be up to ½ vs. if you needed the same repairs in peak summer season.
If you need help with your AC unit make sure you do your research. Make sure that they are registered with the Arizona Registrar of Contractors. Also make sure you check with the Arizona Better Business Bureau (BBB) to make sure you are dealing with a good company.