AC on the fritz? What to do next

(BPT) – Does your home feel uncomfortably warm, even when your AC is running full blast? You may think you can wait until next season to fix this, but with hot and sticky temperatures still lingering, now is the perfect time to upgrade your air conditioning system.

Replacing old ineffective heating and cooling systems can save you money. In addition to impacting your family’s daily comfort, the decision you make about your HVAC system can have a greater impact on your energy bills than any other investment. Heating and cooling typically account for 40% of your household’s energy usage.

If you are among the millions of Americans upgrading their HVAC systems this time of year, here are some things to consider:

1) What’s changed?

If you’re uncomfortable with your current system, you may want to review what’s changed in your household. Has your family grown? Has the weather changed? Is the system at the end of its life?

If your needs have changed or the environment is different, this could explain why the old system is no longer up to the challenge.

2) Consider your home’s design

Some homes already have ductwork in place, which makes it easy to choose a system that requires ductwork. On the other hand, if there’s no existing ductwork, you may want to consider a duct-free system. They consist of three basic components: an energy-efficient inverter-driven outdoor unit, a stylish and quiet indoor unit that delivers conditioned air to the room, and compact conduit pipe for refrigerant and wiring that connects the units.

The space-saving design allows you to heat or cool your entire home or a single room without the need for bulky ductwork, which means no tearing down of walls. One of the most popular indoor units for ductless systems is called Art Cool Mirror, which uses energy-efficient inverter technology. It’s easy to install and comes in a range of heating and cooling capacities from 9,000 to 22,000 BTUs. Many Energy Star certified systems like these also are eligible for tax credits, another important consideration when you’re considering HVAC system upgrades.

3) Where do you live?

The region of the country where you live can have a big impact on your HVAC needs. If you’re in the southeast, you’ll need effective cooling and dehumidification. If you live up north, your system needs to be equipped to handle extreme cold, as well as potentially hot summers.

Make sure the system you choose is equipped to handle the needs of your particular climate. A local HVAC expert can determine the best solution for your location and provide recommendations on the best equipment for your needs.

4) What does your family need?

If your household is constantly undergoing thermostat wars, it may be worth considering a zoned system. It puts a thermostat in each room for individualized comfort control. And it can save energy by targeting only those areas that need cooling or heating, a cost-effective feature when only certain portions of home are being used.

An effective solution is an energy-efficient HVAC system that provides both heating and cooling in one compact unit. Today’s most advanced systems, like LG’s Multi V S outdoor unit, are a year-round solution for comfort in even the most extreme climates, from minus 13 up to 122 degrees Fahrenheit. Plus, they’re compatible with ducted and duct-free indoor units, and they offer quiet, efficient operation.

5) Use connectivity to your advantage

Choosing a new HVAC system just like the one you already have might not be your best option. As with cell phones, TVs and cars, a lot has changed in the last 10 to 15 years since your system was new.

Now you can control your HVAC system’s settings from your smart device, wherever you are, using apps like SmartThinQ. This is the perfect solution for people who might forget to adjust their heat or air conditioner when they leave the house, or for anyone who wants to have comfort at their fingertips.

Once you’ve determined your family’s needs for maximum comfort and energy-efficiency, you can choose a modern system that works best for your home. For more information about new options for heating and cooling your home, visit