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Home Air Conditioning: If you can't Take the Heat

by Jon Nunan

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Your home air conditioning is an integral tool in making residents and guests feel comfortable in your house. This is especially true in very warm and humid climates. Those looking to purchase a home would do well to examine the existing air conditioning system. Anyone looking to build a new house should take a good look at the air conditioning options that are available to be put in place.

Home Air Conditioning Options
In warmer areas, central air conditioning is the best option for any house. Though significantly more expensive than other units, central air conditioning provides the maximum amount of comfort and efficiency when more than one or two rooms need to be kept cool. There are a few different types of central air conditioning available, and each has its strong points.

Most people who choose to install new central air conditioning will opt for a model that will heat as well as cool. Purchasing one of these heating/cooling units will give your home a significant upgrade no matter the time of year. These home air conditioning units are available for use with gas heat, or they can heat and cool using only electricity. In places where it gets very cold in the winter, gas heat is recommended.

Energy-efficient home air conditioning is becoming ever more popular, and for good reason. One great feature isn't contained in the unit at all, but comes in the form of a rebate issued by the government that is meant to encourage energy conservation. These models might cost a little more up front (even with the rebate), but they could conceivably pay for themselves in lower energy bills. Energy-efficient air conditioners are also available in both heat-cool and cool-only models.

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Contemporary Home Air Conditioning
Along with the more traditional central air systems, technology has given today's homeowner even more options. Ductless air conditioning is very desirable due to its ease of installation. They work especially well in new additions or garage conversions. Some of these units can be a bit noisy, however, so it is important to this into account before your purchase.

Mini duct air conditioners provide a system that is much like a conventional central air system, but in a compact size. They use a fraction of the large amount of space used in traditional systems while still providing enough air to cool a whole house. They are not as powerful as a traditional system, but are a good choice for homes that don't have a lot of extra room.

Wall and Window Mounted Air Conditioners
These are the least expensive, easiest to install options. For a quick fix to a long hot summer, it doesn't get much simpler than this. Window units can easily be put in by just about anyone and begin cooling a room in a matter of minutes. They can be a bit loud, and they are quite heavy and bulky. Mounting them into a wall will require some labor and some good carpentry skills, but it will make the unit less noisy and prevent air leaks. These models are meant to cool one room only, but for this task, they do a pretty good job.

Jon Nunan is a freelance writer who draws on his experience in construction, ranging from landscaping to log home building, for his articles on home improvement.