How to Choose the Best Air Conditioner for Your Home

How to Choose the Best Air Conditioner for Your HomeCentral air conditioning works in much the same way that your refrigerator does. Warm air blows across an evaporator coil, the heat energy in the air is transferred to the refrigerant inside the coil, and a blower pushes the cooled air into your home while the heat collected by the condenser stays outside.

Types of HVAC Systems

Split System

The most common type of HVAC system, a “split” system is divided into two main parts: a cooling system and a heating system. The air conditioning condenser and compressor are located outside the home, with the evaporator inside.

Hybrid System

With improved energy efficiency due to the presence of a hybrid electric heater system, this is an advanced version of the Split System.

Ductless System

Ductless systems have an outside air conditioner for cooling and a heat pump participating in both cooling and heating. These are often used in homes that cannot use conventional ducts for whatever reason.

Packaged System

Packaged systems are used primarily in homes without basements, including high-quality heating and cooling combined in a single unit usually installed outdoors. The central air conditioner, condenser,  evaporator, and compressor are in a single cabinet, situated on a concrete slab next to the house or on the roof, and there is no separate furnace.

A/C System Factors to Consider

Temperature and Air Quality

When choosing an HVAC system, you should consider how different units influence your indoor temperature, indoor air quality, and energy consumption. Options that may seem relatively inconsequential can have a significant impact. For example, having UV light in your HVAC system can increase the EPA indoor air quality score, help tackle airborne particle content and reduce humidity.


There are rating systems that reflect an HVAC system’s efficiency. Look for ratings such as the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER), HSPF, AFUE, and EER.

The SEER is the ratio of an air conditioner’s total cooling output over a season to the total energy consumed to do the job. The higher the SEER rating, the most efficiently the unit operates.

There was a time when average air conditioner SEER ratings were 10 or below. Today, new units sold in the U.S. must have a minimum SEER rating of 14, with top units now offering SEER ratings of 22 and above.

To see how much you can achieve in energy savings based on the SEER rating of your new unit, check out the SEER Energy Savings Calculator.


HVAC systems should be able to heat and cool a home’s indoor space effectively. HVAC capacity is measured by British Thermal Units or BTUs. In general, the higher the BTU rating, the greater the capacity.

Thermostat Compatibility

Make sure the system you are considering is compatible with programmable thermostats. By turning your systems on and off as needed, you’ll save money on energy bills and prolong the life of your system. Additionally, most modern thermostats can be controlled by a smartphone from virtually anywhere.

Maintenance Requirements

HVAC systems need regular maintenance for optimal performance. Buy a low-maintenance, cost-effective system and include a service plan that combines regular inspections with repair discounts and labor warranties.


Depending on where installed in your home, HVAC systems can be noisy. Variable-speed blowers are quieter (and use less energy) because they don’t have to run at top speed. Newer models have optional, noise-reducing fan blades. We will work with you to ensure you choose a unit that meets both your climate control needs and noise tolerance.


Your goal in choosing the right HVAC system for your home should be that it meets your comfort needs, even if not the cheapest option. If you are working with a strict budget, you should still consider energy efficiency and durability. Money saved in energy costs and repair expenses over the life of your system can more than compensate for an initial purchase price that’s a little higher.

The purchase price depends on the brand purchased, the home’s size, and the installation cost. HVAC systems are complicated and made up of many different parts. Installation costs vary widely based on the type of unit, as some types require much more complex installation processes.

Government tax credits are often available for newer air conditioning units and heat pumps. We can provide information on available tax credits when working with you on your new or replacement system purchase.

How to Choose the Right HVAC System


When considering what size system your home needs, you should be able to rely on your HVAC contractor or dealer. The calculations often involve many factors, including square footage, ceiling height, insulation, sun exposure, and tree coverage. Older homes may need a different-sized system than a newer home of similar size.

In this case, getting more than you need is not a good thing. Oversized equipment cycles too frequently, which shortens system life, and will not provide proper comfort or indoor air quality.


Buy the highest-efficiency HVAC system sized for the home that you can afford. Heating and cooling account for roughly 45 percent of a home’s entire energy usage. High-efficiency units are always more cost-effective over the long run.


Choosing the right HVAC installer is a crucial factor affecting the quality of your new or replacement system. The right installer will not only cater to your individual needs, but make recommendations to make sure your system best suits you, your home, and your lifestyle.

At Indoor Air Quality, Inc., we can help you determine the right system size for your home and expertly install your new system. Whether replacing a worn-out unit or starting from scratch, we have the technical know-how to keep your home cool and comfortable.

We offer several types of air conditioners, including the popular Rheem air conditioners, and include a five-year parts and labor warranty on all installations. Every Indoor Air Quality, Inc. technician is certified by North American Technician Excellence, Inc. (NATE). The NATE certification program is recognized in the HVAC industry as the leading non-profit technician certification program.

Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) components

IAQ components like humidifiers and high-efficiency air filtration systems are commonly added to base HVAC systems. Discounts are often available.


Warranties not only help save money when things break, but they can also save you time and headaches. Some parts and repairs are covered with a default warranty when buying new ones. The duration of the warranty is essential, along with the terms. In addition to the manufacturer’s warranty on parts (which is 10 years on Rheem products when you register the purchase), Indoor Air Quality, Inc. includes a five-year labor warranty on all installations.

Count on Our Experience

Indoor Air Quality, Inc. has served Highlands Ranch and the Denver Metro Area for more than 20 years. Our team of professional HVAC/R technicians has over 60 years of combined industry experience. Check out our customer testimonialscontact us, or use our online contact form for more information and a free quote.