Air conditioning may not be the most mysterious topic out there in the world of the unknown, but there are absolutely myths and misconceptions that could be preventing people from living in comfort. With hot summer days coming before you know it, we’re going to address and debunk the myths you may have heard so that you too can benefit from cooler and cleaner air from here on in.
5 Common Misconceptions About Air Conditioning and Why They Are False
1. Air Conditioning is Bad for Your Health
This is an unfortunate one, and not because we’re worried about the impact on AC installations. It’s just a shame when the general public is misinformed about their health and wellness.
An old TIME magazine article once stated that the process of cooling hot air creates a significant amount of moisture and condensation, stating that if your AC system does a bad job of this, your internal space can become a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi. OK, that’s true. But take note of “bad job” because therein lies the problem. The article goes on to name culprits of poor maintenance of AC systems, damage, and or shoddy design. Again, we couldn’t agree more! Bear with us, we’re almost there.
Other critics point to a scenario where which AC coolant leaks into the home. If this happens, it rapidly evaporates into a gas, which can certainly be harmful for occupants, resulting in numerous health problems, including nausea, headaches, or worse. Again, we agree. If there is a leak, there is a problem. The same goes for any situation where AC being on the fritz can cause poor internal temperatures, excessive humidity, and poor air quality, resulting in numerous health concerns.
But to state AC is bad for your health because of this is baffling. Do the same critics state that cars are bad for your health? If not, they should, because after all, if the brakes don’t work you may drive right off a cliff! Any malfunctioning machine is bad for the general public. Does that mean we should remove them from society? Should we get rid of planes, trains, automobiles, traffic lights, lawnmowers, garbage disposals, fire detectors, and espresso machines? Certainly not. Instead, it comes down to demanding the best of makes, models, and installations, and for owners to take responsibility for identifying the need for maintenance and repair. By ensuring premium installations and having your AC system inspected at least twice a year you will have no cause for concern.
In fact, the are direct health benefits for households with premium AC installations.
2. You Don’t Need Air Conditioning In Your Region
This one comes up for those who live in cool to moderate climates. However, unless you’re up in the arctic circle (you know what we mean) you will very likely benefit from an AC installation. For instance, let’s look at Calgary, our home, and where we have heard this argument before. When you consider that climate change is resulting in even warmer/hotter summers, more frequent Chinooks, and the fact that AC is able to improve internal air quality (an issue in both rural, suburban, and urban communities) it’s hard to argue a case against AC. View more about why you need AC in Calgary Alberta, or wherever it is you live.
3. New AC Units Are Too Expensive
There are many homeowners who currently sit on their old AC systems because they’ve looked at some base prices for new models and immediately dismissed the prospect of an upgrade. This is understandable, of course. However, there are often gaping holes in the math.
In our recent article about how to save money on utilities with new HVAC installations, we stated how you will typically save between 20-40 percent of your cooling energy costs by replacing an air conditioner that is 5-10 years old with a newer, more efficient model. This is because of technological advancements in AC products, in both parts and manufacturing, resulting in better efficiency and lower costs of cooling. When you consider a 20-40 percent reduction in cooling energy costs, and the health implications (as per item #1) of maintaining an antiquated unit, it seems that you cannot afford to NOT upgrade your AC system.
4. The Bigger the Better
You may think that with item #3 above we’re pushing a bigger unit on you. But that’s simply not the case. In fact, bigger is not typically better when it comes to air conditioning units. AC systems are designed and expertly installed to condition and move air throughout a home at a specific rate. When you install a unit that is too large for your home, the unit will not efficiently adapt to the smaller space, even if it boasts the highest efficiency rating on the market. Instead, it will consume more energy than needed to produce the same results as an installation that’s the appropriate size. Whether you live in a single detached house, town home, or condominium, a professional installer will help determine the best size and set-up for you.
5. If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Inspect It
Many people don’t bother calling an HVAC specialist in for an AC inspection until something goes wrong. We typically get calls on hot summer days after homeowners aren’t able to achieve the level of comfort they used to enjoy a year ago. If they instead had their older units inspected on a semi-annual basis, they would not be living with discomfort in the thick of the season.
Of course, it’s not just about checking to see what might be broken. Regular servicing maintains efficiency and keeps your AC system in optimal condition, which will invariably extend the life of the unit (all else equal). An air conditioner is a very significant investment in your home and should be afforded proper attention to prevent future losses and unnecessary energy expenditure.
Since AC is connected to health and wellness of household occupants, allow us the following analogy, even if it flares for the dramatic. You and your family get regular checkups from the doctor and dentist (hopefully) even if everything appears to be fine, as doing so can nip the potential for more impactful health threats in the bud. Well, the same goes for your AC installation. View more on AC inspection, maintenance, and repair.
If you’re in the market for a new air conditioning unit, you’ll be pleased to know that it’s still early bird season and there are A/C w/furnace combinations that can save you up to $1500. Make your purchase before the arrival of late spring and early summer to take advantage. Contact Air Force Heating & Air Conditioning today to learn more.