Adding Air Conditioning

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated March 11, 2015)

Anyone who has ever sat through a summer without air conditioning can tell you just how quickly you stop thinking about energy savings and begin thinking about comfort. There are generally several options that you can use to add such comfort to your home, and some are significantly more expensive than others.

  • Central air. If you will forgive the expression, central air is the Holy Grail of air conditioning. This is due to the fact that central air can get cooler (or warmer depending on the season) air where you want it—throughout the entire house. However, there is a major drawback to adding this kind of air conditioning to a home or office, and that is the cost. If you do not already have it installed, then you can very easily rack up a large bill having it installed into your home. This is due to such things as adding air ducts, purchasing the unit itself, and all the labor associated with the installation. If you already have some type of duct work in place though, then you will only be charged about $4,000 to have the whole thing installed.
  • Ceiling fans. One of the more inexpensive options, and one that any home improvement enthusiast (no matter their skill level) can do themselves is to installing a ceiling fan. While these units are not particularly effective on their own, they can add a nice bit of relief when it is needed. In addition, they use the least amount of energy when compared to the other types of air conditioning that you could be adding to your home.
  • Window units. Another common solution, particularly for smaller homes or apartments, is to add a window unit. Typically these are simply a small type of fan or possibly an actual air conditioning unit that fits within a window. It then draws out the hot air inside your home, and replaces it with the potentially cooler air that is outside. At the very least, this unit will help create a breeze within the home which can help to cool things off a bit.
  • Evaporative units. Another traditional method for adding air conditioning to your home is to use what is known as an evaporative unit. These types of air conditioners are also known as a swamp cooler. Typically these air conditioning units can either fit in a window, or work with an existing air duct system to help get the cooler air throughout the house. The way that these units work is by having a pad continually saturated with water, through which air is sucked into the home. The temperature difference (and the moisture) that is sucked into the house is typically cooler than the air inside. However, be aware that this type of system not only can add to your electric bill, but to your water bill as well.

When thinking of adding air conditioning, you need to stop and think about a few things. The first and foremost should be how much are you willing to spend to achieve the level of comfort that you want. Shortly after that, will usually follow something along the lines of how much this will set you back on your monthly energy bills.

Once you decide on which way you want to add your air conditioning, then you need to figure out the procedure to use to do it. If you are going to go with central air, then you really should contact a professional. Look for HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) contractors in your area; they can do the job for you and they should guarantee their work.

If you choose a different method of air conditioning (ceiling fans, window units, or evaporative units), you may be able to do the installation work yourself. Check with your local hardware store or outlet; they will be able to provide detailed information on installation.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...


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