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Two Stage is Better than One

Bryant 2 Stage Air Conditioner Unit

Two-Stage Air Conditioning and Why You Should Get It

First, what exactly is a two-stage air conditioner?

A two-stage air conditioner is exactly like a typical single-stage air conditioner, except in one critical component. The compressor can operate at two different speeds, or stages.

This one small change results in a lot of very big differences.

Two-Stage Air Conditioner Benefits

  • More Energy Efficient
  • More Durable
  • Better Humidity Control
  • More Comfort

Energy Efficiency

Most of the time your air conditioner isn't cooling your home from one very drastic heat plateau to another. Instead, the air conditioner kicks on when the temperature drops a degree or two beneath the thermostat setting.

This is good. Otherwise, your house would get really uncomfortable.

The downside is that your air conditioner kicks on and off a lot.

Going from 0 to 100% operating capacity when, really, that 100% isn't required for the job wastes energy. By contrast, a two-stage air conditioner goes from 0 to 67% capacity. It's not working as hard as a single-stage unit, but your home stays just as cool while you use less energy.


If you know anything about the internal combustion engine, you probably know that highway running is the least damaging even though the engine runs at higher speeds. Slow city driving with a lot of starts and stops increases wear and tear.

Your air conditioner isn't any different. Going from 0 to 100% running isn't great on the compressor.

As with energy efficiency, a two-stage air conditioner's dual stages reduce start-stop operation. This decreases compressor wear and tear, letting them last a lot longer than single-stage compressor.

That's definitely a good thing.


Really dry air is uncomfortable, so humidity is great until you get too much of a good thing.

All air conditioners dehumidify your home. In a hot humid summer that's a great thing, and a dual-stage compressor does it even better.


We've already told you how a two-stage air conditioner runs longer at a lower capacity than a single-stage air conditioner. As a side effect, the longer running time allows the unit to dehumidify more effectively.

If you're constantly swamped by murky summer humidity, a two-stage air conditioner is a great asset.

More Comfort

You might be skeptical, but two-stage air conditioners do typically provide better air comfort than single-stage units.

Don't worry, we'll explain why.

Your home probably has its own unique hot and cold spots. When a single-stage air conditioner runs at 100% for a short amount of time, the air might not have time to reach all corners of your home. Which is why those spots are there.

Again, the longer running time on a two-stage air conditioner comes in as a huge benefit.

With the fan distributing air around the home for a more sustained period, there is more time for the cool air to displace evenly. This gives you an overall more comfortable environment throughout your home.


So, yeah, a two-stage air conditioner does cost more than a single-stage unit. That's just the truth.

It's also worth a whole lot more, because it's just better.

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