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AC Buying Guide: What to Look for in Your New Air Conditioner?

Posted by Howell's Heating & Air on August 31, 2021

Which type of air conditioner is the bestThese days, it's safe to say that having modern and efficient air conditioning at your home is just as essential as having reliable plumbing or electrical systems. But before you can call in an AC replacement service to equip your Chesterfield home with a cutting-edge air conditioner, you must first figure out which AC to buy.

In previous articles, we gave you some tips on where to install your AC in your home and discussed the pros and cons of the different types of air conditioners available on the market today. Now we'll provide you with some pointers on how to find a great AC for your home. Read on.

Which type of air conditioner is the best?

Air conditioners come in multiple sizes, aesthetic designs, and types (portable, central, window, split system, etc.). No matter which one you prefer, they all have some crucial traits that can have a significant effect on your comfort levels and future utility bills.

These traits include:


Air conditioners can be quite sizable compared to many other household appliances. Take the appropriate measurements to ensure your AC can actually fit the space you want to install it in, especially if it's a window or wall-mounted model.


In the past years, manufacturers have made massive strides toward increasing the energy efficiency of modern ACs. When choosing your new AC, it always pays to go for the most energy efficient model that fits your budget.


The majority of today's ACs come with 5-10 year component warranties for defective parts, including evaporator coil, fan motor, blower motor, compressor, and so on. Since these warranties don't include the labor costs of air conditioner repair and servicing, HVAC installers also offer additional maintenance plans and extended labor warranties.


Modern ACs are very quiet compared to their older counterparts. That being said, some people would still like to keep noise to a minimum, especially while sleeping. If this is a concern for you, make sure to choose an air conditioner that features the latest noise reduction technologies.

How do I choose air conditioner capacity?

The heating and cooling industry uses BTUs (British Thermal Units) to show how much heat it takes to raise the temperature of a pound of water by a single degree. When used to calculate AC capacities, a BTU represents the amount of heat an AC can remove in one hour.

To determine the strength of the air conditioner you need for a specific room, take its total square footage and multiply it by twenty. The number you get is roughly how much BTU you need to efficiently cool that specific area.

You may also need to make these adjustments:

  • Add 10% if the area in question is heavily shaded, or lower it by 10% if the area gets a lot of sunlight.
  • Add 600 to the number if the area is frequently used by 2 or more individuals.
  • Add 4000 to the number if the area in question is a kitchen.

How do I choose air conditioner capacityWhere can I find a reputable AC replacement service in Chesterfield?

With a tradition that dates back to 1969, Howell's Heating & Air is the go-to choice for all your cooling and heating-related needs in Chesterfield and other communities across Virginia. Reach out to us today and take full advantage of our long-standing experience, client-focused Comfort Club maintenance plans, world-class equipment and products, and more. 

Our technicians will expertly perform your AC installation or repair service while you focus on your other obligations or enjoy a relaxing walk by the Fuqua Farm with your family.

Serving greater Richmond, VA

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