Considering an HVAC replacement is no small matter. We all count on our residential HVAC unit to keep us cool through the hot parts of our year. When the HVAC unit we use to cool us begins to falter, choosing what type, model and brand of air conditioner can be a very challenging situation. Most of us tend to look at price first. While that is a rational approach, often cheaper air conditioning options are just that, cheap. It is easy to get lured by marketing or a local HVAC salesperson who only wants to unload floor models. Considering an HVAC upgrade or replacement needs to be viewed through a lens of a qualified HVAC contractor or dealer.
While there are certainly several good brands competing for residential air conditioning market share, there is one brand with a one of a kind pedigree. Carrier is and has been the HVAC industry leader when it comes to heating and cooling systems. Their line of air conditioners alone are arguably the best out there. Carrier is no stranger to air conditioning. They have been the HVAC industry standard for over one hundred years now. In fact, Carrier’s namesake actually invented what we considering modern air conditioning. Willis Carrier and his group of engineers developed the first air conditioner in 1902. This invention transformed the economy nearly overnight. Carrier has continued to be the design, technology and innovation leader now for well over a century. Carrier was the one to bring air conditioning to the residential market. During the 1950’s, residential air conditioning became a fixture of Carrier manufacturing. And they continue to lead the HVAC industry into this new millennium. Carrier’s innovations, throughout the decades, has always been customer focused and driven. Carriers current line of air conditioning units reflects that core value. Two of the current lines of Carrier air conditioners are The Performance Series and the Infinity Series. Both of these outstanding lines of air conditioners are geared to customer comfort as well as a comfortable price point. They are Carrier air conditioners through and through which should give any homeowner added confidence when choosing a new HVAC system.
We will dive in a bit deeper to view the distinctions between these two lines of Carrier air conditioners. But before we get to that, there is a fundamental ingredient in any air conditioning upgrade or replacement. Whether or not a homeowner goes with an industry leader like Carrier, the installation process is fundamentally important. Using anyone other than a factory certified and licensed HVAC company can severely compromise what is a very important home investment. Carrier trains and qualifies HVAC contractors and technicians who are expertly educated at the Carrier Factory Training Center. These professionals go through a meticulous training program to then be considered Carrier HVAC experts. If choosing between the Performance Series or the Infinity Series, first locate a factory certified Carrier dealer. These people can help you from the very beginning of the process all the way through to the professional installation of your new HVAC. If using any other HVAC dealer, the wonderful qualities of a Carrier air conditioner can be rendered useless due to improper installation. Okay, so what do the Performance Series and the Infinity series have to offer? Well they are both Carrier quality but the Infinity air conditioners are more expensive than the Performance series. This is just a fact we should get out of the way first as many of us want to know about cost up front. But, there are many other factors to consider when choosing which line would be best for you.
An important part of this equation is the efficiency component. However, what makes one air conditioner more efficient than the other? The main indicator in efficiency is the SEER rating. SEER actually stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s just simply a mathematical ratio. A SEER number is derived from the amount of cooling provided to the amount of energy that is consumed. Another way to look at SEER is how much cooling was performed and then divide that by the amount of kilowatt hours consumed. This equation then provides us with a SEER number. Going by the SEER number alone, the Infinity air conditioners out performs the Performance air conditioner. The average SEER number of the Infinity line is, on average, about 21. While the Performance air conditioner line averages a 17 SEER rating. One can do the math and see that, on the surface, there is about a 20 percent difference in efficiency. Yet, this can be a bit misleading without the proper context. The region you live in has a great deal to do with efficiency considerations. Some areas have energy costs which are quite reasonable. If this is the case for you, then a SEER rating of 17 should be considered given the costs of purchase and installation.
However, living in an area where the energy cost are quite high, the added efficiency could then become a much more valuable priority. Given your location, each Carrier models has benefits given the desired efficiency rating and your specific needs. It should also be noted that a SEER rating is simply an average. It is much akin to the MPG rating in your car. If you drive like a speed demon, your mileage certainly suffers and gets nowhere close to the average MPG. Additionally, when thinking about efficiency gains, the average SEER rating of the HVAC unit being replaced is in the neighborhood of a 10 SEER. Either the Infinity series or the Performance series will be a huge improvement in efficiency. Noise can also be a factor in choosing between the two lines. They are both quiet but the Infinity series is the most quiet with a noise level of roughly 65 decibels. Fortunately, since we are talking about Carrier, quality and reliability will not be an issue. The choice between these two Carrier lines really comes down to a homeowner’s personal situation and needs.