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Matching Sides of Split-System A/C After Malfunction: Why It’s So Important

28Jun

The importance of matching sides of split-system A/Cs can’t be overstated. Both sides are designed specifically to work in sync with one another. Simply replacing one unit without the other after a malfunction is a costly mistake that could cost you time, money and peace of mind.

As the name implies, split air conditioning systems are actually divided into two halves: an indoor evaporator coil/air handler and an outdoor condensing unit. The indoor coil effectively removes heat from indoor air, cooling it before it’s circulated through your home. This heat energy is then transferred via refrigerant to the outdoor condensing unit where it’s released to the outdoors.

It’s important for the outside unit to have the same specs and cooling efficiency level (SEER) as its inside counterpart. Otherwise, it will be impossible for the complete unit to achieve the efficiency and performance that a properly matched system offers. For example, if an indoor unit with a SEER of 15 is paired up with an outdoor unit rated at a SEER of 7, the outdoor unit won’t be able to keep up and likely will fail prematurely. The indoor unit won’t be able to perform at its peak efficiency when matched with an older, less efficient outdoor unit.

Another problem you’ll face when trying to match an old evaporator, for example, with a new condensing unit is that they probably will be engineered to work with different refrigerants. The new condenser likely will operate with R-410A, an environmentally friendlier refrigerant than the R-22 your old evaporator was designed to operate with. Without significant modifications to your old unit, you’re not going to have a working system, and even then it won’t work as smoothly as a new, properly matched A/C. A matched system that uses the same refrigerant for both sides is always the best choice, and in most cases, this means buying a new A/C system with matching components.

At Gulf Coast Air Systems, one of our seasoned NATE-certified technicians can help you make the right choices for keeping your A/C system in sync. For more information on matching sides of split-system A/C systems, please contact us at Gulf Coast Air Systems. We proudly deliver quality service and expertise to homeowners in the Tampa Bay area.

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