Energy Efficient Air Conditioners

An overview of energy efficient AC units

With regular use, home air conditioners can produce about a ton of greenhouse gases every year. Multiply this by the number of homes that are using them and you can see that conventional air conditioners are posing a problem for the environment. Even so, people have to cool their homes, so what are they to do? The answer may lie in energy efficient air conditioners.

Energy efficient AC units use anywhere from 10 to 50 percent less power and dramatically cut down on greenhouse gas emissions. The Energy Star system makes it easy for consumers to identify energy efficient home air conditioners, as units that meet Energy Star standards bear a seal of approval. As with other energy efficient appliances, Energy Star air conditioners use significantly less power than the maximum allowances under federal law.

Shopping for Energy Efficient AC Units

When you're shopping for home air conditioners, you have many different options to evaluate and energy efficiency is not the only factor you need to consider. For instance, you need to weigh the relative merits of energy efficient central air conditioners, portable AC units and energy efficient window air conditioners to find the best fit for your home and budget.

Energy efficient central air conditioners are the most expensive option in terms of upfront cost and installation, but they are also the most convenient to use and will cool your entire house rather than individual rooms. The alternatives are window-mounted air conditioners and portable air conditioners, neither of which are as energy efficient as central systems but can lower overall costs because they run in limited spaces and use less power to operate. Generally, portable air conditioners aren't as efficient as window-mounted air conditioners, but you recoup in system versatility what you sacrifice in overall efficiency.

Regardless of the type of unit you buy, there are a few features to look for. First, you'll want a product that is quiet during operation. Also, you will want easy-to-use controls that allow you to instantly adjust the air temperature, the direction of the airflow and the speed at which the air is blowing. For easy maintenance, units with easy-to-clean and easy-to-replace air filters are also recommended.

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