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Replacing Your Air Conditioner? 2 Features You Should Look For

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Are you in the market for a new air conditioner? Before you take a trip to the appliance store to look for the cheapest model, you should consider the fact that new technology has made air conditioners better than ever. Here are two features you should look for in a new system, and how they might improve your day:

1: DC Inverter Technology

Don't you hate being startled by the sudden buzz of your air conditioner clicking on? If you live on the main level of your home, or your system is a little older, you might be familiar with the racket that your air conditioner can cause. Unfortunately, during the hot summer, your only choice might be to pop in some earplugs overnight and hope for a peaceful night's sleep.

Believe it or not, the noise you hear actually stems from your air conditioner pulling power. Fortunately, you might be able to eliminate this troubling noise by upgrading to a system that uses DC Inverter Technology. Because your air conditioner relies heavy on powerful fans to suck in air, it requires massive amounts of power. Older systems simply power on and power off, which can rattle the system and make a lot of noise.

However, DC inverters work by controlling the flow of power to your air conditioner, which means that it can start up slower and much more quietly. Inverters work by carefully converting the incoming alternating current into the direct current that powers your system. Because the current is controlled, your system can gradually kick on, and the fans can run at variable speeds.

Because DC Inverter Technology offers your air conditioner the ability to operate at different speeds instead of simply "on" or "off," your entire system will use less energy, saving you money. In fact, this simple electrical upgrade can reduce your air conditioner's electricity consumption by 20-40%.

2: Auto-Clean

When the end of the summer approaches, your air conditioner might start to smell a little musty. Dust and dirt can accumulate inside your air conditioner because your system is constantly pulling in air from the outside. Unfortunately, because outdoor air also contains humidity, mold and mildew growth can run rampant through your system.

To get rid of the smell, you might find yourself paying for duct cleaning, and wondering how to scrub the inside of your compressor. However, there might be an easier way. Some newer systems boast an auto-clean feature, which can help you to clean your system from the inside-out. Auto-clean systems work by opening a valve to send collected moisture outdoors, and they can even wipe down internal filters to eliminate mold breeding grounds.

To keep the inside of your system even cleaner, some air conditioners even contain bacteria resistant stainless steel filters, so that internal system components don't become worn and riddled with contaminants. Some systems have a simple auto-clean button that you can press whenever your home starts to smell, while others automatically run the auto-clean cycle after the system has operated for a set number of hours.

If you want to make your home smell as clean as you keep it, look for a system that will take care of itself. You might be able to cut down on your yearly HVAC maintenance, while eliminating frustrating odors from your home.

After you track down a new air conditioner that meets your needs, hire air conditioning contractors to install it. Not only will he or she be able to tear out your old system without causing any collateral damage, but your HVAC expert might even be able to help you to program your new thermostat to take advantage of those great features.