Your air conditioner is one of the most important appliances in your home. It keeps you cool during the long Texas summers, so when your AC unit malfunctions, you can be left with needing to get it repaired or replaced as quickly as possible. Whether you’re being proactive and making sure your HVAC system is working well before the heat hits or you need a new AC quickly, here’s what you need to know about installing new AC units and if your home’s electric system should be upgraded first.
Determine the Type of Cooling You Want
If you have an existing central HVAC system, you may want to simply upgrade your outdoor central air unit. If your AC stops working or you need to replace an older unit to cool your whole home, this may be the best option for you. However, if you’re looking to add cooling to only one or two rooms in your house — such as an attic bedroom that gets too hot during the summer despite a working central HVAC system — you may want to opt for ductless HVAC. Decide what type of system will best fit your needs and then find out if any changes need to be made to your electrical system to accommodate the new equipment.
When Do You Need to Upgrade Your Electric?
In some cases, the job is more complex than simply adding a new air-conditioning unit. Your home’s electrical system may not be able to support the heavy load a new central-air unit or an additional ductless mini split without an upgrade. If you’re adding a new room and installing new ductwork to connect to your existing ductwork or are installing a ductless air conditioner, an electrical upgrade is a must. Or, perhaps your AC isn’t working properly because it’s taxing your electrical system. Signs your electrical system is struggling to keep up with your air conditioner include AC failure after power outages, an AC that doesn’t turn off or flips your circuit breaker, or if your electric bill is unexpectedly high.
When to Consult an HVAC Professional
Unless you are highly skilled with electrical work, it’s important to discuss your electrical upgrade with a licensed HVAC technician. While many units will use the same breaker size and wire, such as the commonly used 30-60 amp with 10-4 AWG wire, it’s impossible to know exactly what you need without knowing what type of unit will be installed. Additionally, wiring electrical for multiple AC units, especially for zoned HVAC, can be challenging, and a different electrical setup may be necessary. Consult with an experienced HVAC professional and let him know your cooling goals and if you’re experiencing any issues with your current HVAC system potentially overloading your electrical system. Your HVAC specialist will evaluate the situation and let you know what you need.
At Efficient Climate Control Air Conditioning and Heating, we understand how frustrating it can be dealing with an air conditioner that doesn’t work properly or causes your electric bills to be too high, especially during the heat of brutal Texas summers. Contact us today for an HVAC consultation at (281) 367-5267.