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How to Choose Right A/C Unit for Your Home & Maintenance Tips

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The new window air conditioner models are quite energy efficient to run. Rather than running constantly like the older models, they can be set for the temperature you’d like your room to stay at. Whenever the temperature rises above that, the window air conditioner will turn on and cool the room to the desired setting.

Many people do not realize it, but there is sound science behind how to choose a window air conditioner. When the window AC unit is too small for the area it is supposed to be cooling, it will struggle to keep up with cooling. This drives up your electrical costs, and wears out the unit before its time.

When the unit is too large, it will cool the room too quickly without removing enough humidity. Thus the room will be cool, but it may not feel cool to the people in it due to the residual humidity.

Shopping for a window air conditioner

Two factors are important in determining what size unit your room needs: square footage of the room and the BTU’s of the air conditioner unit. Measure the length and width of the room in which you plan to install the window air conditioner. Then multiply the length times the width to get the square footage.

Take this information to Sutherlands and look for a window AC unit that fits your room and has all the features you want. According to

  • If your room is 100 to 300 square feet, choose a unit rated at 5,000 to 7,000 BTU’s

  • When your room is between 400 and 450 square feet, choose a unit that is around 8,000 to 10,000 BTU’s

  • For rooms larger than that, choose a unit that is 10,000 to 12,500 BTU’s.

Maintaining your window air conditioner

There are several things you can do to keep your window air unit working at peak performance.

  • On most models, the air filter is located in the front and can be easily lifted out. Pull it out and clean it monthly. Most can be washed gently with soap and water and dried with paper towels before being replaced.

  • The condenser coils are located on the rear of the part of the unit that hangs out of the window. They need to be cleaned at least once each season using either compressed air or a soft bristle brush.

  • Take the air conditioner out of the window at the end of each summer and store it in a clean, dry place. If you cannot take it out of the window, cover it completely, sealing it around the edges of the cover to protect it.

When you shop for a window air conditioner, the helpful folks at Sutherlands will make sure you get the right unit for your needs.

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