Do Air Conditioners Need A Dedicated Circuit?

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Do Air Conditioners Need A Dedicated Circuit?

Any air conditioner must be connected to a correctly sized electric circuit. Hopefully this was taken care of whenever your Illinois or Northwest Indiana house was built, but that could have been several years ago. During that time air conditioners have changed and may have different electric circuit requirements. Additionally, many older homes did not have central air conditioning installed when they were built. Any AC replacement or new installation means electrical work could be required.

By the Numbers…Volts That Is

With very few exceptions, a central air conditioner requires a dedicated 220-240 volt circuit. If you are installing a window air conditioner it will likely plug into a standard 120-volt outlet. It may or may not require a standalone circuit, meaning its own circuit breaker. One rule of thumb is if the air conditioner is 110-120 volts and the required amperage is more than seven amps, then it would be best to install a dedicated circuit for the air conditioner. If you have any concerns or questions about the situation in your home, you should call for professional help.

The Numbers Must Match

When replacing an older air conditioner with a new unit it must match the dedicated electric circuit that’s already in place. In other words, the amperage of the circuit must be adequate for the new air conditioner. Always remember safety is the top priority. You should never increase the amperage rating of the circuit breaker without confirming the other elements of the electric circuit, the wiring and outlet, are capable of safely handling the increased amperage.

Depend on Merts

Our Merts Heating & Air Conditioning technicians are qualified to judge if your existing electrical circuitry is adequate for any AC replacement or installation and can also perform basic electrical work like changing a circuit breaker. Any circumstances requiring extensive electrical work in your Steger, IL or Crown Point, IN home will mean hiring a licensed electrician to perform that work before the air conditioner replacement or installation can proceed.

Now is the Time to Call

Whatever your air conditioner needs as we move closer to the heat of summer, Merts Heating & Air conditioning is ready to help. Call to schedule your seasonal maintenance or to receive a no-obligation estimate for an AC replacement. For more great heating and cooling information, be sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.