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When considering a heating and cooling purchase there are many factors to consider. Your top consideration should be utilizing the right sized quality equipment. Our trained sales and service professionals will help aid you in this purchase process. We also offer several financing options and pre-sale tips.
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Most Reliable Central Air Conditioning Systems
The brands most likely to keep you cool
Installing or replacing a central air conditioning system is one of a homeowner’s biggest expenses so you’ll want to get it right the first time. It’s not practical for Consumer Reports to test central air conditioning systems because there are so many variables, including a home's size and design, how the system is installed, and construction of the ductwork. Instead, we estimate the reliability of major brands on the market by asking our readers about their experiences with the systems they bought and installed. Choosing a brand with a lower failure rate will help boost your chances of getting an air conditioning system that will last for years.
In our latest survey, 16,247 of our subscribers told us about the central air conditioning system they purchased between 2008 and 2015. Because systems with heat pumps are used for cooling for more months of the year than conventional systems—7 months vs. 5 months—we analyzed the data for each type separately. This year we also asked our subscribers how satisfied they are with the central air system they purchased, the cost of their most expensive repair, and which parts broke. Here’s what we found.
Five Things to Think About Before Buying Heating or AC Systems in Central Ohio
1. Replace or repair?
The traditional formula to apply is the 50 percent rule. If the cost of repair hovers at half the cost of a new system, it is generally better to replace it.
2. Make sure your AC and heating systems match.
Make certain that your air conditioner and/or heat pump’s outside compressor unit works with matched indoor blower coils to work at peak performance. To make sure that the systems not only can work together but also work together at optimal performance, they must be the same size.
3. Consider new technologies.
• New high-efficiency HVAC systems can save homeowners up to 60 percent on heating and cooling their homes. Furnaces can now work at 95 percent efficiency and air conditioning systems more than 20 SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio).
• Ultraviolet (UV) light is now used in HVAC systems to kill 99 percent of the germs and viruses in the air. Some systems shine on the air outside the air conditioner’s vaporization coil. That system not only purifies the air, but it stops buildup in the air conditioning unit that improves considerably the efficiency of the unit.
• Smart technology has been introduced in HVAC systems. The systems come with indoor touch screens to control your systems and can be controlled by smartphones, computers or iPads. The remote control ability allows the homeowner to control the temperature remotely. The systems also alert the homeowner if there is a system problem or in case of fire.
4. Buy the right size system for your home.
There are three figures that are factored in when deciding the proper size: the amount of heating and cooling for your climate; the area that the system is to heat or cool; and, the condition of the parts of the home that interface with the outside. Buying the biggest system is a mistake. It actually will not work as well and will cost more in utility bills.