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The Complete Process of Installing an Air Conditioning System

The Complete Process of Installing an Air Conditioning System

An extensive reference to the installation process for air conditioners. Learn how the way your air conditioner is installed has a big impact on its longevity and efficiency.

I won’t lie; installing a new hvac installation is a challenging task. Customers are frequently surprised to realize how much work is needed when they ask me what the process entails.

The fact that many hvac installation businesses and air conditioner installers don’t know all the processes that should be included in a professional installation is more concerning. For an A/C system to function “well enough,” it is simple to make compromises. But choosing “good enough” typically means that you and your family will experience less comfort and lose thousands of dollars in energy expenditures over the course of your system. This must change.

Which would you prefer: a trashcan outside your house that steals your comfort or a sleek, efficient machine running your air conditioning? You probably prefer the first option. You’re in luck, I suppose.

We will go through every step of the air conditioner installation procedure in detail in this post. Continue reading if you’re dedicated to getting the most out of your air conditioning system. By the time you’re done, you’ll be able to relax knowing that you comprehended each step. It will also enable you to select a business with a quality installation procedure.

Notably, this is not a how-to manual. A qualified specialist should always install an air conditioner. It should be clear why once you’ve read through each step involved.

Making plans to replace or install a new central air conditioner

Just the last few years have seen enormous change in the world. Think about how much has changed in only ten years.

The majority of outdated air conditioners that are replaced nowadays range in age from eight to thirty years.

Modern air conditioners are 20–50% bigger in all three dimensions. This enables a bigger coil, increasing the effectiveness of the air conditioner. Your new air conditioner might not fit in its current placement due to the bigger size of modern air conditioners. Sometimes the air conditioner needs to be moved, especially if your unit must comply with state or manufacturer space clearance requirements. Others demand that the unit be situated close enough to the utility meter. This sometimes results in extra expenses.

The first thing a homeowner should think about is if they need to move any equipment or alter their ducting.

What’s good news then? Your expenditures are frequently countered by the fact that contemporary air conditioners are both quieter and more effective than older models.

Gathering AC-related data during the home estimate

The estimator is in charge of inspecting the current air conditioning system during your initial in-home visit. They need to gather crucial data so they can provide you with a precise proposal. The installation crew is then given this information.

The installation staff can bring any specialist equipment they may require because of this stage, depending on the work.

Before the day of installation, having the right information enhances the likelihood that the task will be finished properly and quickly.

The Installation Team’s Arrival, Review, and Safety

You should get a call or text letting you know your installation crew is en route before they show up there.

A lot of reputable hvac installation companies will also give advance profiles and images of the installation personnel that will be working at your house. This adds another layer of security and comfort before a stranger enters your house.

The lead installer will go over the task details with you once they arrive and share it with them. This is frequently sent in a package that also contains employment information. This package includes details on the equipment, installation accessories, and any specific instructions you provided to the estimator prior to the sale.

You should set aside some time for this review. This will stop expensive and annoying errors from occurring during the installation. A successful installation depends on good communication.

The other team member(s) will start putting down floor protection and setting up tools and equipment while you and the lead installer go through the specifics of the task. Additionally, they will begin a safety procedure that entails shutting off the gas and electrical supplies to the installed hvac installation systems.

Taking Down Your Current Central Air Conditioner

Before a new air conditioner can be installed, a refrigerant from your old one must be removed. It is prohibited to directly vent this refrigerant into the atmosphere in accordance with EPA regulations.

To safely and legally extract the refrigerant from the current central air conditioning system, a recovery machine and recovery tank are required. The refrigerant can only be removed and handled in a safe manner using this technique.

A separate EPA certification is required for anybody handling any refrigerant or equipment containing one. Only the name on the certification is certified by the EPA. As a result, the legislation mandates that every member of the installation crew, service team, or any group that could handle refrigerant or equipment containing refrigerant possess their own unique EPA certification.

Electrical wiring is detached from the existing air conditioner once the refrigerant has been appropriately collected. An emergency safety mechanism, the disconnect box, is located close to the air conditioner. Your A/C unit may be turned off by it.

A “whip” (flexible electrical conduit) transports electricity to the air conditioner from the disconnect box. To maintain system security, reputable hvac installation providers replace the disconnect and the whip while replacing an air conditioner.

Safety regulations demand that a new disconnect box be installed together with the new air conditioner in circumstances where an old system doesn’t have one. There are detailed installation instructions for correctly sizing and wiring the disconnect.

Before performing any work within the service disconnect, the electrical panel’s circuit breaker has to be switched off. The existing air conditioner may be securely removed once all of the connections have been cut.

Getting Ready the Area for the New Central A/C

Most of the time, some preparation work will need to be done at the air conditioner’s current position before the new air conditioner can be installed. The pad that the new air conditioner will sit on has to be replaced as part of this preparation.

The size and height of modern air conditioners have increased over time. The earth has also sunk on occasion. The earth needs to be leveled before the new pad can be installed. The location where the new air conditioner will be installed should be leveled or raised using a gravel base, according to reputable hvac installation providers.

Some individuals believe that pouring a concrete platform for the new air conditioner to sit on is preferable. A concrete pad is not required and risked severe shifting and cracking. It is quite tough to fix or fix when this occurs. A composite pad is suggested as an alternative. The composite pad was created with the intention of being outside and surviving for the whole life of the new air conditioner. Additionally, it frequently has superior vibration absorption capabilities than concrete, which helps lessen noise and rattling.

In most circumstances, the new air conditioner cannot be securely moved or lifted without harm once it has been installed. There are several stiff and pressured interior components. After it is linked, moving it can do the system irreparable harm. If the air conditioner ever has to be leveled, a composite cushion can prevent harm.

Taking Away the Current Indoor Evaporator Coil

The indoor evaporator coil, which makes up the other half of your air conditioning system, often lies above the furnace but occasionally does as well. The opposite end of the refrigerant lines is attached to this.

There are two versions of the indoor evaporator coil. One is uncased, whereas the other is. In either case, the replacement coil cannot be placed until the sheet metal plenum has been separated. When access to the coil is restricted, this process may become challenging.

The most typical limitations are areas designed with the system in mind, like completed basements or closets. As a result, the coil or plenum cannot be accessed from all sides. Depending on how tough the task is, there can be an extra fee. The majority of indoor coils are higher because they are more effective. Before the replacement coil can be placed, the supply plenum may need to undergo further preparation.

Taking Down the Current Copper Refrigerant Lines (Line Set)

The current refrigerant line set can then be taken out. The refrigerant passes via this pair of copper wires as it makes its way from the outside condenser to the indoor evaporator coil.

The refrigerant line set is typically fastened to the floor joists using straps. The line set is taken down along with these straps. In any situation where the line set is visible and accessible, it is advised that it be changed.

Oil and refrigerant both go through the lines together. The oil in an older air conditioner’s line set is different from the oil in a brand-new air conditioner. It is impossible to combine these oils without endangering the modern air conditioning system.

The line set may occasionally be hidden by a wall or a ceiling, or it may even be buried in concrete or below ground. Access isn’t always a choice or even feasible. You may either identify a new position to run a new line set under these circumstances, or you can reuse the remnants of the old line set. If the current line is set to be used again, it has to be properly flushed and cleaned before being pressure tested. It is never advised to preserve a line set that can be replaced if one already exists.

The new indoor evaporator coil is installed

Any new air conditioning system has two evaporator coil installation choices: cased and uncased. A cased coil is the best choice since it comes in an insulated cabinet with front panels that can be removed for access to the coil within.

Additionally, the cased coil is made to just lay on top of the furnace, making maintenance and upgrades simple. It will often be painted to match the furnace’s color. The fact that a cased coil is pre-cased by the manufacturer is its main advantage. Due to this, failure resulting from a subpar installation is extremely rare, regardless of the installer’s degree of expertise.hvac installation

When utilizing a cased coil, it just has to be placed on top of the furnace because it has already been “installed” by the manufacturer. Connecting and sealing it to the preexisting sheet metal plenum is the next and last stage.

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