LESLIE: Shawna in Oklahoma’s up next and she’s a prime example of how one home improvement project can lead to another. What can we do for you?
SHAWNA: We just replaced our sewer line over the weekend. And we had to dig down under our air conditioning unit out back. And now we know we have to replace our air conditioning unit.
SHAWNA: Because it’s leaking. And I was wanting to know what is the best type of air conditioning unit to buy.
TOM: Well, there is good news. And that is that the air conditioning units today have never been more efficient. The ones that are Energy Star rated today, are going to give you more BTUs of cooling power for less electrical expense. The other piece of this is that if you buy an Energy Star rated air conditioning compressor, you’re going to qualify for a federal energy tax credit and actually be able to get some money back on your income taxes after you … after you put it on.
So the secret here is to look at the Energy Star rating and to buy the best unit that you can afford based on the rating so that you use the least amount of electricity to deliver the most cooling power. OK, Shawna?
SHAWNA: OK. And also, I need to replace my thermostat in my house …
SHAWNA: … because it kicks on and off, on and off.
TOM: Well, that may not be the thermostat. That could be a problem with the …
LESLIE: It could even be the location of the thermostat.
TOM: Or it could be a control circuit issue. So when you (ph) put in a setback thermostat so that you can have the heat or the air conditioning automatically come on or off when it’s needed throughout the day. Because, you know, just – especially in the winter time, for those in the colder parts of the country – putting in a heat setback thermostat will actually knock about 10 percent off that heating cost.