Have you noticed your electric bill has increased exponentially? Or perhaps your air conditioner is not operating as efficiently as it once did. There are a few signs that it’s time to replace your air conditioner. Once you’ve realized replacement is your best option, it’s only natural to want it done as quickly as possible.

However, it’s in your best interest to fight that urge and do just a little research before spending thousands of dollars on a new HVAC system. To help you along the way, we’ve compiled this list of six mistakes many people make when buying an air conditioner. Please avoid the following:

#1 – Making price the only factor.

The cost of a new unit will absolutely be a major factor in purchasing your new air conditioner, but it shouldn’t be the only one. When you ignore everything but the price tag, you’re more likely to end up with diminished efficiency, inferior cooling ability and an unreliable unit. To get the best deal possible without sacrificing the features you need, make sure to get all of the details for each air conditioning Tampa unit along with the cost.

#2 – Miscalculating the importance of a SEER rating.

SEER refers to the seasonal energy efficiency rating. This number demonstrates how much cooling is released for each energy unit it expends. A higher SEER equates to a more energy efficient air conditioner. Both temperature and humidity are taken into account when determining a SEER rating.

HVAC systems have advanced greatly over the past few decades, with a little push from the government. Previously, many of the models offered had a SEER rating of 8. As of 2006, the minimum requirement for central air conditioners became a SEER rating of 13. HVAC systems with at least a 14.5 SEER qualify for the Energy Star label from the Department of Energy.

#3 –Not taking advantage of rebates.

Energy efficiency is a hot topic with the government. As such, many states and manufacturers offer special rebates to help offset the cost of a new air conditioner with higher efficiency. For example, in Tampa Bay – the Tampa Electric Company (TECO) offers a rebate when replacing an old inefficient air conditioner. You can read more about it here.

#4 – Only getting one estimate.

How do you know you’re getting the best deal when you have nothing else to compare it to? Aim for three estimates, and make sure they’re all in writing. Each should list the details of the work to be done, a warranty and terms of payment.

When it comes to heating and cooling your home, Hinton AC and Refrigeration is here to help! For any questions about buying a new air conditioner or to set up an appointment, please call (813) 924-3836.