Installing A New Central AC System: What To Expect
If your home is currently utilizing a ductless air conditioning system, combining a series of window units, or simply missing an air conditioning all together, you may be looking to have a new central air conditioning system retroactively installed. Not only are central air conditioning systems very effective at keeping your home cool and comfortable, but they're also quite energy-efficient and can add significant value to your home, sometimes up to 10%.
Still, retrofitting an existing home for central air conditioning installation requires some work and expertise. By having a better idea of what to expect, you'll be prepared for this undertaking on your property.
The Initial Home Visit
First, it's a good idea to find two or three reputable HVAC companies in your area that specialize in residential AC installation. Have each company come out to your home separately for a site consultation and estimate. This will allow them to take the measurements they need to design a cooling system for your home and give you a better idea as to what you can expect in terms of cost, lead times, and the level of retrofitting that will be needed.
Preparing for Installation
Once you've signed a contract with an installation company, there are a few things you'll want to do before the crew arrives. For starters, if you know the exact area on your property where the new AC compressor will be installed. Make sure this space is clear of any shrubs or heavy landscaping. You'll also want to make sure that any pets are contained inside your home or sent to a boarding facility during the install.
Ductwork Modification or Installation
If your home doesn't have any existing ductwork or has an older ductwork system, it's possible that your HVAC installers will need to make some modifications and install new ductwork to maximize the efficiency of the new unit. This will need to be done before the new compressor is installed and can take several hours, depending on how extensive the work will be.
New Unit Installation and Testing
Once the new compressor, refrigerant lines, and other components are installed, your air conditioning will need to be tested extensively to ensure it is working properly. Typically, your installers will stick around to check the performance of the unit after it is installed; within a few days, you can also expect a follow-up appointment to ensure everything is going smoothly. From there, any necessary tweaks can be made—and you can enjoy the convenience and comfort of having central air conditioning in your home.
For more information on what to expect from an air conditioning installation, talk to HVAC contractors near you.