As spring approaches and we look forward to the warmer weather, many homeowners will be considering switching to central air conditioning to cool their homes more efficiently. Central air is a wonderful home improvement for many people, but it’s not without its downsides. Below, we’ll be discussing the main pros and cons of installing central air conditioning to help you decide if it’s the right move for you.
What Is Central Air? How Does It Work?
Central air conditioning is a means of cooling your home. Rather than relying on small, individual condensers — as you’d find in window air conditioners — a central system uses one or two large condensers set outside your home. The cooled air is then moved through your home by a blower motor. The air moves around via ductwork, which is hidden behind the walls.
What Are the Pros of Central Air?
Central air conditioning comes with many advantages over other forms of cooling. Most importantly for many homeowners is the energy efficiency. Cooling your home with central air uses less electricity than window or wall units for similar results, ultimately leading to lower electric bills.
Central air also keeps your entire home cool and comfortable with a single control station, rather than having to remember to turn on different air conditioners throughout your house. Plus, central air equipment is housed outside of your home and the ducts are hidden in your walls, so the system won’t detract from your home’s visual appeal.
Finally, central air conditioning systems increase the value of your home, often in excess of what you pay for the system.
What Are the Cons of Central Air?
Central air conditioning isn’t without its downsides. The biggest negative aspect of installing central air is that the cost is astronomical if you don’t already have ductwork for your heating system.
Speaking of ducts, you will need to have central air conditioning ducts cleaned regularly to prevent system damage and recirculation of allergens and debris in your home.
Finally, central air conditioning will require a large outdoor condenser. The condenser can be unsightly, and positioning it in certain parts of your yard — far from your electrical panel — can be costly.