If you and your family are having arguments over how cold or warm to keep your home, don't assume that some of you will just have to suffer while others win out. In homes that have central heating and cooling units or HVAC systems, it can be difficult to get different people to agree on what temperature the thermostat should be kept at. Invariably, this leads to some occupants being very uncomfortable. A good compromise is adding a window air conditioner, which also has the secondary effect of keeping your home's HVAC system in better shape.

Removing Stress

The more your HVAC or central system cycles on and off, the sooner it will wear out. If you can leave your thermostat at a temperature that's closer to what the room would normally be without it, then the system won't turn on and off so much. Adding a window air conditioner to rooms that you want to make colder allows you to leave the central or HVAC system at a more moderate temperature.

Allowing Customization

That also lets people in the house have more leeway in finding a comfortable temperature. If you have four people all trying to set a thermostat at different temperatures, you're going to get three unhappy people in the end. But if those people have their own air conditioners, then they can retreat into their rooms if the rest of the house gets too warm.

Adding window air conditioners won't increase your utility bills by that much if the units are energy-efficient, and if the people who have them don't leave them running all the time. In fact, that's one advantage window units have over other types of air conditioning systems; the units tend to be noisy enough so that you don't forget that they're running. If you leave your home, you'll remember to turn the unit off.

Preserving Cool Air

Window units also send the cool air right into the room--no ducts to traverse first. So, the unit won't need as much energy to make the room colder. That will help make any increase in utility bills much more moderate.

And of course, the biggest advantage to keeping a window unit or two around even when you have an HVAC system is that you'll have access to air conditioning should the HVAC or central system break down. If you've ever gone through a heat wave without air conditioning, you'd know how wonderful it would be to pull out a window unit instead of sweltering until the repair company shows up.

Window units will cool only the rooms they're in, so you'll still need your HVAC or central system for whole-house cooling. But adding these units can really help keep everyone comfortable instead of forcing some people to be hotter or colder than they want to be.