SC mom warns home-buyers of low-performance AC units in new builds

Home owner's warning on AC requirements

INDIAN LAND, SC (WBTV) - A mom in Indian Land expected her family's new home to be a hideaway from the heat, but a misunderstanding of construction requirements now means balmy conditions inside the house.

"It'll get to 80 up there," Amy West says of the second floor, where the family's bedrooms are.

West says when they are upstairs on a hot South Carolina day, the temperature can hit the 80s.

"When it's bedtime and your kids are extra whiny or hot, you just have to tell them to suck it up," she says. "That's disappointing."

The family's AC unit isn't cutting it, as temperatures tick up. The unit is not enough tons to keep the inside air at a set temperature. West says the home's builder cut costs when it came to cooler quarters.

"Just said when it's hot outside, it's going to get hotter in the house too and to just expect this," she says.

There is no regulation broken, the state says. Not according to South Carolina's construction standards.

"In the case of outside temperatures exceeding 95 degrees, a differential of 15 degrees from the outside temperature will be maintained," it reads. "Where there is excessive glass, this may not be attainable. Owner should be advised on the use of shading in that area."

"They just put in what was economical for them," West says.

Now, the mom says hindsight is 20-20.

"What we were looking at was what color floors, what kind of cabinets, that kind of stuff," she says. "You assume that all the operational stuff is going to be functional and you don't have to ask questions."

Nearby, new homes, new AC units, and new families are coming in. Families West hopes can learn from her own experience.

"Now we would think twice about that," she says. "If we were buying another new house we would ask more questions for sure."

West says her family is now thinking about installing an attic fan to try to keep things cooler, a much less expensive option than an entirely new AC system just two summers after moving in.

Copyright 2018 WBTV. All rights reserved.