Choosing the Perfect AC For Your Climate: 8 Essential Tips

Choosing the Perfect AC For Your Climate: 8 Essential Tips

Burbank, CA, characterized by its Mediterranean climate, experiences long, cool winters and hot, dry summers. While the summer temperatures here do not often reach the extremes of triple-digits, selecting the appropriate air conditioning system is critical. Making the right choice will ensure consistent performance, high efficiency, and a comfortable environment. Here are eight essential tips to keep in mind when choosing an air conditioner for this region.

1. Work With a Licensed HVAC Company

You might encounter enticing deals on air conditioners at local big box and home improvement stores. However, purchasing a cooling system without the expertise of a licensed HVAC company carries significant risks. For example, you risk selecting equipment that is too large or small for your home, and this can result in excessively high energy bills, uneven humidity levels, frequent repairs, and a host of other issues. It’s crucial to consult with a professional to ensure you choose the right air conditioning system for your needs.

Unfortunately, inventory buyers at big box stores may not always consider region-specific needs when stocking their air conditioner selections. While these air conditioners often come at attractive prices, they may not deliver the performance and efficiency that you deserve. It’s important to choose a model that is tailored to the unique climate and requirements of your area to ensure optimal functionality and energy savings.

Working with local HVAC companies provides access to products specifically designed to meet the unique needs and conditions of the area. We offer a range of central air conditioners and other permanent cooling systems that are perfectly suited to the climate in Burbank. For example, our AC models feature variable-speed motors that efficiently handle typical warm days as well as the occasional heat wave, ensuring optimal comfort and energy efficiency.

2. Consider Wildfire Season

Between 1984 and 2021, cities adjacent to Burbank experienced only two wildfires. However, this does not guarantee that your home will be unaffected by wildfire smoke each year. The most effective air conditioners for the area are equipped to seamlessly switch to recirculate mode, ensuring indoor air remains safe when outdoor conditions are hazardous. This feature is essential for maintaining air quality and protecting your health during wildfire seasons.

In recirculate mode, air conditioners cool and circulate the existing indoor air instead of drawing in potentially contaminated air from outside. This process effectively reduces indoor concentrations of allergens and harmful gaseous chemicals, while ensuring that the occupants remain comfortably cool.

Designs that allow easy switching between standard AC operation and recirculate mode are also beneficial in response to chemical spills and other air quality emergencies. These features ensure quick adaptation to keep indoor air safe and clean under various environmental conditions.

3. Check for Optimal Humidity Regulation

Burbank experiences moderate humidity levels, with a year-round average of just 65%. This typically aligns well with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommendations for indoor humidity, which suggest maintaining levels between 30% and 50%. However, during periods of sudden spikes in outdoor humidity, it’s crucial to prevent your home from becoming damp and muggy. Look for air conditioners equipped with a user-friendly “dry mode.” This setting is ideal for times when you don’t require cooling but still need to reduce excess moisture effectively.

4. Protect Your Indoor Air Quality

Air conditioners improve the comfort of indoor environments by sending warm air outdoors. This air first passes through an air filter, which captures textile and carpet fibers, pet hair, dust, dander, and other large particulate debris. To protect and enhance your indoor air quality (IAQ), it is crucial to regularly check and replace this filter. Additionally, consider choosing air conditioners that provide timely reminders to change the filter and alerts that monitor indoor air quality. Installing a smart thermostat can also offer enhanced IAQ support, especially when upgrading your home cooling system.

5. Choose Equipment With Needs-Specific Warranty Protections

Although local temperatures may not reach extreme highs, they are warm enough to necessitate frequent use of air conditioning throughout much of the summer. Extended and regular cooling cycles exert considerable stress on AC compressors. Prolonged operation and increased temperatures can also affect the viscosity and performance of the lubricating oils within these components. Given that the compressor is one of the most critical and expensive parts of your AC system, it is highly recommended to choose an air conditioner that includes a robust compressor warranty. This ensures added protection and peace of mind.

Generally, new air conditioners are equipped with limited parts warranties ranging from two to five years and compressor warranties lasting 10 to 15 years. Choosing a model that offers enhanced compressor protection can significantly reduce your risk of facing costly compressor replacements or the need for premature system replacements. This decision ensures greater financial security, as your cooling system will be dependable for a long time to come.

6. Explore Different Cooling Equipment Types

Surprisingly, not all homes in Burbank are equipped to support central cooling systems. Many older and smaller properties do not have the necessary ductwork for central AC installation. While retrofitting your home with air ducts is always an option, there are often more cost-effective and less invasive alternatives available.

Ductless mini-split systems feature outdoor condenser units paired with multiple indoor air handlers, which distribute cooled air directly where it is needed and bypass the need for extensive metal ductwork. These systems are highly efficient, providing zoned climate control and tailored air delivery for specific areas of your home. Although initially more costly than traditional central AC units, ductless mini-splits are often more economical to install compared to the combined expenses of ductwork retrofitting and central AC installation. This makes them an attractive option for homes without existing ductwork.

Ductless mini-split systems are significantly more efficient than window-mounted AC units. Unlike window air conditioners, which typically only cool a single small room, ductless mini-splits can manage the climate in up to eight distinct service areas or zones. This allows for targeted temperature control across multiple rooms or sections of a home, which enhances both comfort and efficiency.

Burbank’s moderate climate makes it an ideal location for heat pump installation. During the warmer months, heat pumps operate just like air conditioners and cool your home. In the colder months, they reverse their operation to extract warmth from the outside air and distribute it indoors, providing consistent and even heating. Whether you opt for ducted or ductless models, heat pumps can achieve efficiency levels up to 400%, meaning they produce four times as much heating or cooling energy as they consume in electrical energy. If you’re looking to lower your energy costs and reduce your carbon footprint, heat pumps are an excellent option to consider.

7. Know the Efficiency Requirements for Your Region

Under the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act, homeowners can benefit from substantial end-of-year tax credits for installing high-performance heat pumps or air conditioners, along with other energy efficiency improvements. To qualify for these incentives, your installations must meet the specific efficiency standards set for Southern California and the type of HVAC equipment you choose. When you partner with us, we will guide you in selecting the optimal heat pump, air conditioner, or ductless mini-split systems to maximize these benefits and other potential rewards.

8. Look for Limited Noise During Operation

Nighttime temperatures in Burbank typically fall in the mid-60s. Throughout the early portions of the evening, your home could hold a lot of heat. Keeping your air conditioner running throughout the nighttime hours shouldn’t make it difficult to watch your television at a reasonable volume, converse with others, or enjoy deep and restful sleep. Shop for cooling systems that do not produce a significant amount of noise when in operation.

Consult With the Experts

We offer outstanding air conditioning, heating, and indoor air quality services. We also provide preventative maintenance plans, home energy audits, and utility rebate appraisals. To shop an expensive selection of air conditioners, heat pumps, and ductless mini-split systems perfect for the Burbank, CA climate, contact Air Max HVAC now.

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