When you have the best home air conditioner, even the hot summer months won’t faze you. But there are just so many types of air conditioners out there; picking the best is an uphill task.
In addition, the various types come with varying unique selling points, as different brands try to position themselves to appeal to the market.
This guide will help you see beyond all the noise and brand marketing strategies. While choosing the best home air conditioner, you have to consider factors like your budget, the type of AC, size of your home, and the current conditioning condition of your home.
Below, we’ll provide a detailed buying guide to pick the best air conditioner for your home. Here’s what you need to know:
- 1. Factors to Consider When Choosing Air Conditioner
The Various Types of Air Conditioners: Which is the Best for Your Home?
- 2.1. Ductless Mini-split
- 2.2. Portable Air Conditioner
- 2.3. Central Air Conditioner
- 2.4. Window Air Conditioner
- 2.5. Floor Mounted Air Conditioner
- 2.6. Hybrid Air Conditioner
- 2.7. Geo-thermal Air Conditioner
- 2.8. Smart Air Conditioners
- 3. Final Take
Factors to Consider When Choosing Air Conditioner
Going blind into the market when in search of the best air conditioner system is not efficient. You’ll waste time and resources and probably end up with the wrong appliance.
Vendors will sell anything to you as long as you write a check. However, if you consider the following factors, we can guarantee you’re getting the perfect home AC.
The budget is the primary factor to consider. Of course, you can’t buy beyond what you can afford. However, you can create a medium-term savings plan towards an AC you believe will be functional for your home. Based on the features and value offering, air conditioners come at varying prices.
The window air conditioners are the cheapest types. The portable air conditioners also fall in the “affordable” rank. These air conditioners are only functional for one room at a time.
Both the mini-split AC and ductless air conditioners are designed to be cost-effective. They can serve your whole home. However, doing that will require that you perpetually keep them on, which isn’t cost-effective. The best way to maximize the mini-split AC or ductless air conditioner is to use them for a maximum of two rooms.
Smart air conditioners, as you’ll expect, are costlier than the others. However, you’ll only bear such a high cost once. Over the long run, smart ACs offer better cost-efficiency. Therefore, you can budget for a smart AC if you are looking to cut down on energy bills.
The central air conditioning unit is exceptionally effective in cooling the home. They are also designed to be durable. However, the cost you’ll incur per month in running the central air conditioning unit is high.
The geothermal heating and cooling systems are expensive but are incredibly energy-efficient. The initial purchase cost is, however, on the high side.
While your budget reflects your purchasing power, it cannot stand alone. You’ll need to consider your needs and see how you can reconcile them with your budget.
When it comes to energy usage, it’s a no-brainer to go for an energy-efficient system. The best home air conditioner contributes less to your monthly recurring energy bill. The energy efficiency ratio (ERR) of an air-con is directly proportional to the system’s efficiency. Therefore, highly efficient ACs have higher ERR ratings.
Another efficiency metric you may find on your potential air conditioner is the SEER rating. SEER stands for seasonal energy efficiency rating.
You can calculate the SEER rating by dividing the cooling output by the electric input over a period. Conditioners with higher SEER should be your target as you hunt for the best type of air conditioner.
Except you are buying for just a short-term use, durability is another vital factor to consider. To use an appliance for the long-term, it has to respond well to maintenance. Again, though, air conditioners are easier to maintain when they are best suited for your space.
The British Thermal Unit is the standard measure of an air conditioner’s cooling power. The higher the BTU power, the better your air conditioner will be at cooling your space.
Most of the standard conditioners you’ll find are between 6000 and 12000 BTUs. The amount of cooling power you’ll need the air conditioner to produce directly depends on the vastness of its intended space. The larger the area you want to cool, the more power you’ll need.
Related Article: What is the Most Reliable Brand of Air Conditioner?
The Various Types of Air Conditioners: Which is the Best for Your Home?
The section above gives a clue to the types of air conditioners there are. On their best days, each type of air conditioner is best for one home or the other.
All ACs come with interesting features while also depicting innovative ways to solve the problem of heat. Hence, you should expect that some details will overlap. The overlap of details is what leaves the choice of your best home air conditioner to you.
The ductless mini-split air conditioner is a compact unit to serve a single room. Therefore, to cool all rooms in your house, you’ll need to fix one unit per room. The ductless mini-split is exceptional for either heating or cooling purposes. Hence, in the long run, they are energy efficient.
Beyond efficiency, the ductless mini-split also eliminates the stress of ducting the whole house. The flexibility of ductless mini-splits is responsible for viral use in modern homes.
For the ductless mini-split, there is a complementary compressor outdoor unit. The indoor unit is fixed indoors, towards the home’s lintel. The indoor and outdoor units are then connected via a tube. The connecting tube is responsible for transporting refrigerant.
The ductless mini-split air conditioner has a remote for control. Some brands of these appliances also have smart features that enable control via your mobile device.
- You can install ductless mini-split anywhere, without the hassle of ducting
- It gives you the flexibility of maintaining different temperatures for different rooms
- It costs less to install this air con
- You’ll need multiple units to cover the whole home
- The presence of the indoor unit on the wall can distort your interior decor
Which Home is a Ductless Mini-Split Best for?
The ductless mini-split ac is best for modern homes you’re occupying on a rental basis. You don’t want to make too much of a permanent modification of the house.
Portable Air Conditioner
The portable air conditioners are a single free-standing unit featuring its components enclosed in them. The design makes it movable from one room to another. Once there is a power outlet to plug it in and a window to let out its funnel, it’s good to go.
The portable air conditioners are best for homes or spaces you occupy for a very brief period. They come in different sizes, giving you options for different areas.
The designs of the portable air conditioners also come in a variety. There are portable air-cons with a single hose that expels air outdoors. There are also dual hose portable ACs that pull air with one hose, cool it, and subsequently eject with the other. The cooling of the air occurs in the in-built compressor.
The portable air conditioner is designed to stay indoors. Hence, the evaporator fans don’t stop working. The fan’s continuous work evaporates the condensed moisture the unit collects.
- Setup is almost stress-less
- You can move it quickly around your house.
- No permanent installation is needed
- You can easily store it when not in use
- They make so much noise
- They are ineffective in larger rooms
- Once it comes with a hose, it can’t stay anywhere other than beside the window.
Which home is this Best for?
If you can afford it alongside your central air conditioning unit, you can buy it. Also, portable ACs are functional in parts of the home, alongside a dedicated cooling system — for instance, your bathroom.
Central Air Conditioner
Central air conditioners have the primary purpose of cooling large spaces. However, they can also cool every part of your home. Installing a central air conditioner can be a hassle, as it requires installing ducts in the house.
The central air conditioner is a split system. It combines an outdoor pack with the indoor unit. The outdoor unit of the AC houses large compressors and condensers. The indoor pack of the appliance houses the air handler and evaporator coil.
A Central AC leverages refrigerants in the removal of heat from inside the home. The ducts then serve as the passage of the heat out of the house.
- Through the ducts, the system can cool more than one room at once.
- You can regulate the house’s temperature at once
- The presence of the central air conditioner reduces humidity in the home
- The central air conditioner will reflect heavily on your energy bills
- If there is a problem with the ducts, inefficiency sets in
- The outdoor units are always massive and take much space.
Which Home is this Best for?
If your home is large, with several rooms, the ducted system of a central air conditioner is essential.
Window Air Conditioner
The window air conditioners come in varying sizes. Irrespective, they are best suited for small rooms. However, with a large enough window air conditioner, you can cool a small home. They are champions of cooling smaller areas and are arguably the most popular type of air conditioner.
A window air conditioner is a single unit; all its components are embedded in it. The front of the AC faces inside, while the back is pointed outwards. Thus, it functions without a duct.
You’ll need professional air-con installation to affix it in your window or create a hole for it in your wall. The window air conditioner features a filter that requires frequent cleaning to ensure efficiency. In addition, there is the possibility of the AC coming with remote control.
- They are cheaper to install and operate
- Maintenance is easy
- They don’t take space
- They are noisy when switched on
- They make available window space smaller
Which Home is this Best For?
The window Air conditioner is best for your home if you’re working with a tight budget. They are also cost-effective for the long term. You have to deal with the noise.
Floor Mounted Air Conditioner
The floor-mounted air conditioner has a system similar to the ductless mini-split. However, you don’t need any ductwork to make the unit functional. Floor-mounted ACs are great for spaces with low or tilted walls.
You can install them at a level just 6 inches above the ground, then connect the pipe through a tiny hole to the outside unit.
One significant advantage of the floor-mounted air conditioner is the ease with which you can inspect the air filter. In addition, the easy reach of the air filter makes this AC unit ideal for people with respiratory issues.
- They are the best choice for aged persons
- You can easily install it
- They don’t take much space
- Obstacles like furniture can undermine their functionality
- They aren’t ideal for large spaces
Which home is this best for?
The floor-mounted air conditioner is best for your home if you want a mini-split air conditioner, but you can’t afford a wall to mount a unit. The regular mini-split conditioners should be mounted towards the lintel. However, you can mount this closer to the floor.
Hybrid Air Conditioner
The hybrid air conditioner system combines a heat pump with an electric air source with a gas furnace — the combination results in both cost and performance efficiency.
When it comes to cooling or heating a space, the hybrid air conditioner is one of the best. The hybrid system is a top air conditioner that’s smart enough to alternate between fossil fuel combustion and electricity in response to outdoor conditions. The alternation process can be pre-set or manual.
During winter, the cooling process – pull out hot air from the inside out – reverses. The system fosters an even distribution of heat across the home. If the heat pump can’t function during extreme cold, the furnace takes over.
- The system is extremely cheap to maintain in the long run
- The system lowers the carbon footprint
- The hybrid air conditioner is efficient for both heating and cooling functions.
- Initial setup is highly costly
- The financial impact will be felt for a long time.
Which Home is this best for?
If you are in your permanent residence, and you don’t mind investing in a durable and efficient system, the hybrid air conditioner is the best for your home.
Geo-thermal Air Conditioner
The geothermal system is a novel cooling system. The advanced system it features leverages the earth’s insulating properties. 4 to 6 feet below the ground, the earth’s temperature is relatively constant. The geothermal system takes advantage of the stable temperature in cooling your home.
To get this system up and running, there is a lot of digging and installation to be done. Core to the geothermal system is; pipes, loops, and the heat pump. Setting up the geothermal system consumes time. However, the resulting cooling system is worth the wait.
- The system is efficient
- The system is durable
- The operational cost is low
- The installation process is daunting
- The initial setup cost is very high
Which home is this best for?
You should only go for the geothermal air conditioner if you own the home.
Smart Air Conditioners
Smart appliances are the rave right now. However, smart air conditioners offer a different experience. Smart ACs aren’t necessarily a unique form of air conditioners. They can be mini-split, portable, or window air conditioners powered by a smart operating system. The interconnection of these appliances with other devices – IoT – is what makes them smart.
Smart air conditioners have Wi-Fi connectivity enabled. Upon connection, they download the corresponding native app to control the air conditioner from anywhere in the world. Once the air conditioners connect to the internet with your smartphone, you can control them.
Due to the connectivity of the smart ACs, the functions are limitless. You can initiate functions like weekly schedules, comfy mode, temperature control, geofencing, etc. The energy-saving capability of smart ACs is also incredible.
You can also get remote controllers from a trusted vendor. Smart air conditioners give you more control over your temperature regulation in an elegant way.
- They provide immense control comfort
- They are very efficient energy systems
- They incur the lesser operational cost
- The initial purchase price is expensive
- You need Wi-Fi to use the appliance.
Which home is this best for?
If you own a smart home, it’s only best to complement it with a smart air conditioner.
Related Article: 10 Things to Consider Before Air Conditioner Installation
Which air conditioner should I buy? The details on this page certainly do justice to that. With careful consideration, you’ll find the best one. The best home air conditioner is the one that meets all your needs. Start by listing your requirements; making a choice becomes easier.
When you make your purchase, reach out to our aid conditioner installation service for a safe handling and setup process. Discuss your air-con needs with the experts at ALP Heating today!