What You Need to Know About Adding an AC Unit to the Garage

When you think about central air conditioning, you may envision cool air flowing through the main section of your home. However, this leaves your stuffy garage to its own defenses. Trapping heat in this extended area of your home also makes your main HVAC system work harder to circulate cool air. So, how can your garage stay cool and keep your home cool?

The experts at Air Care Heating and Cooling understand that home cooling goes beyond comfort, keeping vulnerable family members healthy. That’s why we don’t want any rooms to present issues for your HVAC system. We compiled a list of everything you need to know about installing a garage AC unit, and how professionals can deliver complete cooling to your home.

Are you searching for air conditioning system upgrades like a new garage AC unit in Charlotte, NC? We can help! Don’t hesitate to call the expert technicians at Air Care Heating and Cooling! Schedule your air conditioning service appointment today, at (980) 580-8134.

What is a Garage AC Unit?

A garage AC unit may be integrated into your central heating and cooling system or a standalone AC unit placed in the garage. When a garage AC unit is used in combination with another indoor cooling system, it actually makes that system run more efficiently. After all, your garage is often one of the hottest places in your home because of its loose insulation.

During the summer, it’s common for warm air to travel from your garage into the rest of your home. This makes it harder for your indoor AC system to reach a cool temperature, thus making your unit waste more energy. When your garage is controlled by its own AC unit, it no longer acts as a hot pocket that traps harmful heat in your home, spreading out the cooling duties. 

Ductless Mini-Split AC

Ductless mini-split AC systems offer the ultimate customization in your home’s central cooling. Allowing you to send different temperature-controlled air to separate rooms through head units, ductless systems are a perfect solution to the heat or humidity inside your attached garage. Some systems even allow you to control your thermostat from an app on your smartphone.

Mini-split AC systems offer a more straightforward solution to cooling your home than a traditional HVAC system because they don’t use ducts to transfer air. This makes them the ideal choice for your garage, which typically isn’t suitable to run ductwork in. The only downside to ductless systems is their high price. However, investing in a mini-split system keeps your home running efficiently in every room or space, so you save money in the long run on monthly costs.

Window AC Unit

Garages with windows offer an additional option for indoor cooling. Installing a window AC unit allows you to cool your garage separate from the main part of your home. While a window AC unit may be noisier than other cooling systems, while tucked away in your garage, it keeps its sounds contained. In bigger garages, two window AC units are sometimes necessary to evenly cool the entire space. A trained technician can help you determine how many units you need.

Through-the-wall AC systems are similar to window AC units, but they use a hole in the wall to receive air instead of a window. These systems often offer a more affordable alternative to a ductless mini-split AC system without needing to add windows to your garage space.

Portable AC Unit

Purchasing a portable AC unit is frequently the cost-effective option. Instead of investing in two window units to cool your space, portable units allow you to move the cool air in your garage where you want it. Some portable units offer both heat and cool air, while others focus on one task. Installing a portable AC unit in your garage is much easier than a ductless mini-split AC or window AC unit because it only requires plugging in the exhaust hose.

However, where portable AC units cut costs initially, they can be more expensive to maintain monthly compared to window AC units. Window AC units are often more efficient because they use less energy to cool your garage, reducing energy consumption and costs each month.

5 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Garage Air Conditioning System

When you’re considering a new garage air conditioning system, there are five factors you should consider before making your decision. 

1) Does your Home Currently Have Central Air?

If you already have an existing central air conditioning system in your home, like a mini-split AC, a professional HVAC technician can help you determine if a head unit can be installed in the garage. This helps your system run efficiently from one system, instead of introducing new cooling methods to the garage. However, if your home runs on a traditional HVAC system, a window AC unit or portable AC unit may be a simpler alternative than unsafe garage ductwork.

2) How Big is Your Garage?

The size of your garage also helps you determine which cooling method is right for it. Small garages may easily be cooled by a portable AC unit or single window unit. On the other hand, large garages may benefit more from their own mini-split AC head unit or from adding extra window AC units to your garage space. Weighing your options with a professional HVAC technician helps to ensure your garage air conditioning system is running most efficiently.

3) Does Your AC Need to Cool Varying Sections of Your Garage?

If you are only attempting to cool certain sections of your garage, a portable AC unit offers the most flexibility because it can be moved around your garage. Window units are limited to properly sized windows in your garage, while mini-split AC systems focus on cooling the whole room instead of a specific area. Ductless systems may provide too much cooling if you are only interested in temperature-controlling a certain section.

4) What is Your Garage AC Unit Budget?

If budget is a major concern in your garage AC unit purchase, window AC units and portable AC units are often the cheaper cooling alternative, ranging from around $100 to $500. On the other hand, ductless mini-split AC systems increase cooling functionality and efficiency drastically, making them well worth their range from $5,000 to $20,000. The price for ductless systems increases as you add more zones or head units. One room is considered a zone.

5) How Humid is Your Garage?

Window AC units remove moisture that is typically associated with mildew or mold in your AC system. However, portable AC units and ductless mini-split AC systems operate as even more active dehumidifiers. If strong humidity is the main problem in your garage, the latter two options offer the best solutions to dry your air and ward off irritants.

Importance of Maintaining Your Garage AC Unit

Since you likely use your garage AC less than any air conditioners running inside your home, it may seem like it needs less maintenance. However, your garage is often one of the dirtiest parts of your home, regularly making your garage AC unit filter filthy. In fact, your air conditioning system in the garage may need to be maintained more frequently than your indoor AC.

Typical indoor HVAC filters need to be changed at least every 90 days, with garage AC unit filters likely needing to be changed every couple of months. 

Air Care Heating and Cooling is the Professional HVAC Technician in Charlotte, NC

Air Care Heating and Cooling is the HVAC company you can trust. Our team puts safety and customer service above all else. We increase your family’s safety by offering temperature-controlled zones that protect your elderly or newborn family members from dangerous heat. Your home deserves to be comfortable, and we can provide that.

Are you searching for reliable air conditioning system services in Charlotte, NC? Call the team of professionals at Air Care Heating and Cooling today, at (980) 580-8134.