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With monthly savings on your electric bill, and maybe even a tax credit, buying an energy-efficient A/C unit is sure to be a good deal in the long run.
Step 1: Prevent and repair leaks
Fix the places around your home that are poorly insulated or that allow air to leak in and out so your new air conditioner will perform at its best.
Step 2: Determine size
Find out what size unit you need by measuring the space to be cooled or by having a central air specialist inspect your home.
Step 3: Understand SEER
Understand the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, a measure of how much cooling a unit puts out per unit of power. A higher SEER means greater efficiency.
Look for models with the EnergyStar logo and a SEER of at least 13 as baseline indicators of an efficient unit.
Step 4: Understand features
Look for additional features that will help conserve energy, like a thermal expansion valve, an auto delay fan switch, and a filter change indicator.
Look for a second rating, called the EER, with a value of 11.6 or higher. Higher values mean more efficient operation in the hottest temperatures.
Step 5: Comparison shop
Compare the output, performance, and SEER ratings of various models in your price range.
Step 6: Make the purchase
Purchase the most energy-efficient model you can afford.
Did You Know?
Pellet stoves, which burn small pellets of organic material at a combustion efficiency of up to 85 percent, are a much cleaner form of indoor heating than traditional fireplaces.