Which 2017 Air Conditioner Is the Quietest?

2017 Mar 14
Posted in: Air Conditioning

The last thing you want is an obnoxiously loud A/C unit.

But how do you choose a quiet one?

We’ll help you know what to look for. In this article, we’ll discuss:

  • How A/C sound level is measured
  • The quietest 2017 A/C units
  • Picking the right A/C size for your home

Let’s start by looking at how sound level is measured:

 

Decibels: How A/C sound level is measured

Air conditioner sound levels are measured in decibels (db). The lower the decibel rating, the quieter the air conditioner.

The quietest A/C’s fall into the 50–60 db range—but what does that actually sound like?

Here are some common sounds in that decibel range:

  • 50 decibels = the sound of rainfall
  • 50 decibels = the ambient sounds of a large office
  • 60 decibels = the sound of a normal conversation
  • 50–60 decibels = the sound of an electric toothbrush

For more sound comparisons, check out the Center for Hearing and Communication’s article about common environmental noise levels.

 

The quietest 2017 A/C units

Decibel comparisons at a glance

Let’s compare the decibel ratings of few leading air conditioner brands and models:

Note: These A/Cs are running in optimal conditions, so usually the range fluctuates to up to 10+ db higher than the advertised decibel level.

A word on A/C brands: Sometimes homeowners worry about choosing the best brand. In our experience, all of the major air conditioner manufacturers (like York, Trane, Carrier, Lennox, and Rheem) make quality products. Instead of focusing on the brand, focus on who you choose to install your air conditioner. A bad A/C contractor and ruin the best A/C brand via a poor installation

Learn more about how to choose the best A/C contractor.

Look for these noise-dampening features

As you shop around for an A/C unit, look for these features that point to a quiet A/C unit:

 

  • Variable-speed blower fans: The indoor component of your A/C unit has a blower fan that circulates the air in your home. The quietest A/C units have variable speed blowers, which operate the fan at different speeds (so it’s not running full blast 100% all the time).  This feature not only reduces noise, it improves comfort and cuts energy costs.

 

  • Noise-reducing fan blades: New technologies reduce the noise caused by fan blades, which makes your overall system sound quieter.

 

  • Compressor insulation and mounts: The compressor is the loudest part of an A/C unit, so a well-insulated compressor traps noise so it doesn’t reach your home. There are also compressor mounting materials that will limit noise when your air conditioner is running.

 

But, before you run out a buy an A/C unit with all those features, you should know that size affects sound...

Know that size affects sound

The A/C unit’s size (measured in tons) also affects the sound. Bigger air conditioners are inherently louder, so keep that in mind as you compare brands and models. If you have a big home, you’ll likely need a larger A/C unit to sufficiently cool your living space.
 

Find the right A/C size for your home

So how do you know what size air conditioner you need for your home?

You’ll need a professional to perform a Manual J Load Calculation.

This calculation takes into account many factors like the size, shape, insulation and local climate of your home to find the right air conditioner size.

Learn more about A/C sizing and Manual J calculations: What Size Central Air Conditioner Do I Need?

 

Want a free A/C installation estimate?

Contact George Brazil HVAC for expert help sizing your A/C unit and finding a quiet solution for your home.

We’ve been helping families in the Phoenix area since 1955.

 

Related articles