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Here are the questions and answers we get most often here at Ideal Energy from our Phoenix customers regarding heating and air conditioning! We hope this helps. If you have other questions regarding your home's comfort, energy efficiency or HVAC operation, feel free to give us a call - we'd be happy to help!

What Is a Variable Speed AC System?

If a two stage air conditioner is more efficient than a single stage AC, a variable speed AC unit is even more efficient than all of them. Instead of just the two settings that a two stage AC can operate at, a variable speed system has much more flexibility, and makes small changes throughout operation to run at the most efficient speed without sacrificing your comfort. For example, a Trane XV18 variable heat pump system has 750 stages of cooling, whereas a Trane XV18 variable air conditioner has 700 stages of cooling. Alternatively, a packaged Bosch inverter variable speed system operates between 25%-110% capacity at 1% increments. You might pay more up front for a variable speed air conditioner, but you'll see the difference when you get your energy bill- plus the continuous comfort is like no other!

What Is the Difference Between R-22 And R-410A Refrigerants?

AC units use refrigerant to transfer heat out of your Chandler home and keep you cool. In the past, the most common kind of refrigerant found in air conditioners was R-22, but you may know it by another name: freon. Unfortunately, freon isn't great for the environment, and in 2004 the EPA began phasing out its use. R-410A, or pruon, is its replacement.

Starting in 2020, R-22 will no longer be manufactured or imported in the US. You can still buy it, but prices will be on the rise as supplies dwindle and it gets harder to find.

All new AC units are designed to work with R-401A, but unfortunately if you have an older system that uses R-22, you won't be able to use the new refrigerant in it. On the bright side, upgrading to a new AC will save you money on energy costs, is better for the environment, and will likely provide higher comfort levels as well!

What Is a Two Stage Furnace?

A two stage furnace has two different settings of operation, instead of just one. With a single stage furnace, your furnace is either on, and running at 100%, or off, and running at 0%. But a two stage furnace has a setting where it can be run at about 65%, so unless you need full power to get your Phoenix area home comfortable, your furnace will run at a lower setting for higher efficiency and energy savings.

What Is a Variable Speed AC System?

If a two stage air conditioner is more efficient than a single stage AC, a variable speed AC unit is even more efficient than all of them. Instead of just the two settings that a two stage AC can operate at, a variable speed system has much more flexibility, and makes small changes throughout operation to run at the most efficient speed without sacrificing your comfort. For example, a Trane XV18 variable heat pump system has 750 stages of cooling, whereas a Trane XV18 variable air conditioner has 700 stages of cooling. Alternatively, a packaged Bosch inverter variable speed system operates between 25%-110% capacity at 1% increments. You might pay more up front for a variable speed air conditioner, but you'll see the difference when you get your energy bill- plus the continuous comfort is like no other!

Should I Install a Zoned AC System in My Arizona Home?

A zoned AC system allows you to set different temperature settings for different rooms or areas in your home. For example, zoned AC systems let you keep your bedroom at one temperature overnight while you sleep, and your kitchen at another, since you won't be in that room and the energy will mostly be wasted to keep it at the same temperature. Zoned AC systems can also allow families with different comfort preferences to keep their rooms at different settings.


The main thing to watch out for with zoned AC systems is they need to be installed properly without a dump zone or a bypass duct. In order to install zoned systems correctly, it's best if the AC or heat pump is a variable speed system so the AC unit can regulate its airflow with modulating dampers. If you have a single stage system that is zoned, it's very common for it to cause substantial high static pressure, leaks and other issues that will cause your bills to spike, frequent breakdowns and poor airflow due to the bypass duct or dump zone.


Zoned ACs offer greater flexibility, and options to create more customized comfort levels and ultimately more energy efficient home cooling operation. Ductless mini-splits or Trane variable capacity AC units like the Trane XV18 or XV20 are great options for Phoenix or Tempe homeowners looking for more control over their comfort, as each unit or zone can operate independently and set to different temperature preferences, are WiFi enabled and can be controlled by your smartphone.

What Is Short Cycling for an Air Conditioning System?

If your AC is short cycling, it usually means your AC is oversized and too big for your Chandler home! When an AC is too big for the space it's conditioning, it will turn on, and then turn off again shortly after, typically within less than 10 minutes of cooling, because it will reach the desired temperature level very quickly. What this creates are uneven temperatures in your home (because your AC isn't running long enough to push cool, conditioned air into every corner), and added wear and tear on your equipment because it will be turning on and off much more frequently than a properly sized and designed system would be.


The remedy to a short cycling AC is to replace it with a correctly sized system. At Ideal Energy, we take pride in doing precise load calculations for every AC installation project we work on to ensure that you get the highest AC service from our team and that your air conditioner will provide maximum value for years to come.

What Size AC System Do I Need for My Home?

While it's unfortunately common that a number of AC companies out there will try to pressure you into installing the same size or a larger (and more expensive) AC unit, the reality is that larger is not always better when it comes to energy efficiency, system longevity, and home comfort! Oversized ACs are a common issue that we see in Chandler, Scottsdale, and Mesa homes, which is why at Ideal Energy, we take the time to conduct Manual J load calculations, following strict protocol from ACCA (Air Conditioning Contractors of America), to ensure that your AC is sized perfectly to maximize your value and comfort.

What Type Of AC Unit Is Best for My Arizona Home?

Getting the most comfort and energy savings out of a new air conditioner is at the top of everyone's list, but the right AC for your Phoenix home is going to depend on your answers to a number of questions:


Do you want to cool your entire home, or just a specific room or area? Do you want your AC to connect to your central ductwork, or are you looking for a ductless cooling solution, like ductless mini splits? Are you looking for a combined heating and cooling system? If so, Ideal Energy offers a number of heat pump options for your home. Are you looking for a zoned AC system where you can set the thermostat temperature differently in every room? How important is energy efficiency to you? We can help explain how many cooling systems are rated, including SEER and EER.


The short answer is: if you're looking for the best system for your home, there are many factors to consider. Our biggest focus is the quality of the installation of your home's air conditioner, as you can have the most efficient AC unit but get half the efficiency out of it if it's not installed correctly. At Ideal, our expert HVAC technicians understand the unique needs to homes in our Arizona climate, and can sit down to learn more about your comfort needs and give you our best recommendations for AC and HVAC installation in your house.

How Long Should My AC Run in Its Cycle?

If you've been noticing that your AC either seems to turn and then turn off again too quickly, or that it feels like it's running for long stretches of time, then it's likely you're experiencing an AC sizing problem. When an AC is too small for the area it's trying to cool, it will struggle to keep up, and run for a long time. If an AC is oversized, then your unit may be "short cycling"—turning on, then turning off again shortly after, over and over.


The average AC should run for at least 15 minutes during a normal cycle, preferably longer. Anything less than 10 minutes, and you could be short cycling. If the system is properly designed and sized, on the hottest day of the year, it is normal for your AC unit to run all day. This means that when it's cooler than the hottest day of the year, your AC system won't short cycle.

What Is a Two Stage Air Conditioner?

A two stage air conditioner has a compressor with the ability to run at two different settings—high and low. A two stage air conditioner is more energy efficient—instead of running only at 100%, like a single stage, a two stage AC will run at 70% of its capacity when the full tonnage isn't needed (on cooler days). A two stage AC unit can tell when your Tempe or Mesa home doesn't need your AC to be going full blast to maintain your comfort settings, and will switch to the lower setting to save you energy (and money!).

What Our Customers Are Saying

  • ** NOTE: I did a decent amount of research on AC units and other aspects of HVAC systems prior to calling companies for quotes. I definitely don't know or understand it all, but I definitely learned enough to be dangerous (a.k.a.

  • We had an excellent experience with Ideal Energy. Alex and his team are very professional, timely, and did a fantastic job improving our home's energy efficiency. Also, their prices were very reasonable and competitive. Can't believe how hard the AC blows now.

  • We were very happy with the price and service. Our summer electric bill has been $300.00 to $400.00 dollars cheaper. We recommend these folks and have to family members.

  • This is, by far, the best company I have ever had the good fortune to work with. I have worked with enough not-so-good companies and bad companies to know this one is definitely a keeper. I have never worked with a company that worked so hard for me.

  • These guys came HIGHLY recomended from ___ board members to preform a home energy audit. They were very professional, timely, honest, and nice. Alex and his team did a great job and were a pleasure to deal with. I would recommend them to anyone looking at a home audit.

  • First off I would like to thank Ideal Energy for all their expert advice and professionalism.

  • My experience with Ideal Energy was exceptional. I would highly recommend any home/condo owner to contact IdealEnergy for a $99 home energy audit and then to follow through with IdealEnergy to conduct repairs.

  • Ideal Energy is AMAZING!!! I had the company come out and bid the work for my AC, duct work, and insulation. They were extremely professional, competitively priced, clean, on time, and did QUALITY work.

  • I highly recommend Ideal Energy if you want to reduce your energy bills and have a more comfortable home. Alex, Elena and their team are extremely professional and knowledgeable. We have definitely had a reduction in our monthly APS bill. Furthermore, they are conscientious and detail-oriented... Read More

  • Here is my latest bill from APS. As you can see, AFTER you guys came & did our house the bill is MUCH lower......Thank you so much!

  • Alex and Elena are remarkable people. They have really helped me determine the best way to save energy. I recommend them to anyone who are serious about getting the most of the energy used in their house!

  • We had Alex and his crew out for an energy audit, we are so glad we decided to call their number. Everything checked out fine, in addition they addressed our problem issue re: a hot room. Made a suggestion and finished the job. It worked! From a very happy customer Thank you!

  • My husband and I used Ideal Energy for the work we had done this July which included the installation of a new AC unit, another air return, duct sealing and repair, as well as insulation and airsealing. We cannot speak highly enough of Alex and his crew.

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