There are several reasons homeowners choose to have central air conditioners installed in their attics. If you’ve been considering this for any reason, it is important to carefully think through whether or not it is really the right decision for your home before you schedule an installation appointment. Removing an attic air conditioner and relocating it can be a lot of work. Therefore, if you can avoid it, you should.
Here, you’ll discover some of the major pros and cons of attic air conditioning units. As with any decision you make about your home, you’ll have to weigh the good and bad points and spend some time considering your personal priorities. In the end, only you and your family members can decide if having an air conditioner installed in your attic is the right decision for your needs.
Attic units are space savers – As a general rule, new residential air conditioning systems consist of two separate, or split, units. The outdoor unit, which is what many people think of as “central air conditioning,” houses only the condenser and the compressor. An indoor unit contains the evaporator and the fan itself. In most cases, the indoor component can be installed in a storage closet or a utility room.
In some cases, though, the attic is the best place for this portion of the HVAC system. This tends to be especially true in historic North Carolina and South Carolina homes where there typically isn’t a lot of storage space. If you need to save room in your house, an attic air conditioning unit might make a lot of sense.
Attic units are less expensive – Because contractors can leave attic ductwork exposed and have to do less finish work overall, attic air conditioning units are typically cheaper than units installed in other parts of a house. Cost is a major factor for many homeowners and, frequently, is the thing that finally sways them toward an attic-based unit.
Attic units can use more energy – The main negative aspect of attic air conditioning units is that tend to be inefficient from an energy usage perspective. Contractors typically try to increase efficiency by sealing all of the air ducts located in any attic space. There is still, however, the potential for air leaks to develop. These leaks can ultimately lead to increased utility bills and decreased comfort levels within your home.
Attic units can have undetected issues – The other, less major, problem with attic air conditioners is that they can develop issues that aren’t noticed right away. If, for instance, an AC unit in your laundry room starts making strange noises, you will probably notice within a day or two. An attic unit, though, could be on the fritz for months before anyone realizes. This can lead to more expensive repairs.
If you are interested in having a new central air conditioning unit installed anywhere in your home, give your local heating and air company a call at your earliest convenience. They can help you with everything from choosing the right unit for your needs to figuring out where to put it in your house.